How to Equip Space Marines Centurion Devastators?

Space Marines Centurions Warhammer 40KAlong with the new Space Marines Anti-Aircraft tanks, the only other truly new unit are the Centurions, both as Centurion Assault Squad and Centurion Devastator Squad.

Centurions didn’t get much love from the community when the first pictures hit, but it seems quite a few (though probably not all) people are coming around to them.

So, starting with the Centurion Devastators, how should they be equipped on the table?

#1 – Centurion Devastator Basics

The background for Space Marines Centurions is pretty spot-on.

Centurion Devastator Squads are long-range specialists who pound enemy positions with salvos of heavy weapons fire. A Centurion Devastator Squad’s only real weakness is its lack of speed, for whilst they can outgun entire squads of enemy infantry, they are easily outpaced by fast-moving elements of a foe’s strike force.

To start with, Centurions are obviously slow (and Purposeful), tough and bristling with weapons. Their main challenges are the problem of moving them around (cost-) efficiently (Land Raider or bust… no deep-striking these guys) and, possibly, the lack of an invulnerability save, both of which mean Centurion Devastators should look carefully at the range they operate in.

Centurions also aren’t cheap. With a few weapon options, you are quickly looking at 250+ points.

#2 – Weapon Options

Centurion Devastators have both a “primary” and a “secondary” weapon (and can fire both, thanks to Decimator Protocols).

Their secondary weapon are hurricane bolters, which can be upgraded to the ever-versatile missile launchers (no Flak missiles though).

Their primary weapon, however, is where it gets interesting.

  • Twin-linked Heavy Bolter 

By default, Centurions come with Heavy Bolters, an iconic weapons of Warhammer 40K, and twin-linked on top.

A bare-bones Centurion “Dakka” Squad at 200 pts. or less will be mowing down light- and medium-armoured infantry left and right. It’s fun, but still feels like a slight waste of 200 pts. as (Heavy) Bolters aren’t usually in short supply in a Space Marines army.

  • Twin-linked Lascannon

Arguably the weapon that suits the Centurions best. It has the longest range from all options, making a slow walk from the deployment zone hurt the least.

But…  they are pricey, and you almost must take missile launchers for synergy. A 3-Centurion all-lascannons and missiles squad is just a Marine-and-a-half short of 300 pts.

A regular Devastator Squad with 4 lascannons, for all their differences to the tough Centurions, will get the essence of this job done nearly as well for half the points.

  • Grav-cannon and grav-amp

I love the Grav-cannon, both visually (as seen on the Centurion by Miniature Miscellany above) and as a concept. Yet it seems to be the most difficult weapon to work with them.

It’s no-longer Twin-Linked, though lots of shots and re-rolls to wound (grav-amp) make up for that. More importantly, the grav-cannon is short-ranged, meaning smart opponents should be able to keep the obvious targets – Terminators, MCs, etc.. – away from them.

Imagine if Centurions could deep-strike, or at least drop-pod, jumping – say – a Riptide or Wraithknight with 15 AP2-shots that roll (and re-roll) to wound on their armour-save?

#3 – The Magic Omniscope

At the end of the day, I think a squad of Centurions with only one type of weapon will not be the ideal way to field them (which, btw, seems like good game-design).

  • All-Bolters will work, but may be redundant in a Marines army.
  • All-Lascannons will work, but doesn’t seem cost-efficient.
  • All-Grav-cannons is potentially devastating, but will struggle a lot to catch worthy prey.

The magic ingredient, in my humble opinion (and against a lot of 40K-specialize-at-all-costs-wisdom) is the omniscope for the sergeant. It grants him Night Vision and Split Fire, allowing him to shoot different targets (with different weapons). This obviously works very well with a lascannon (making the most from Night Vision at long range), but may also work well with a grav-cannon too.

  • A sample Centurion Squad – 230 pts. 

2x Centurions with twin-linked heavy bolters and hurricane bolters

1x Centurion with twin-linked lascannon, missile-launcher and omniscope

I am still not sure if a Land Raider could work for them (though I think there’d be worthier cargo, including Terminators and, possibly, Assault Centurions).

#4 – Thoughts?

What do you think?

  • How would you field Space Marines Centurions, if you’d field them?
  • Which weapons do you think will work best?
  • Land Raider or walking?

Leave a comment and let me know!


Image: Astral Claws Centurion painted by Andrew from Miniature Miscellany.


I am Zweischneid. Wargame Addict. Hopeless painter and founder of Pins of War. I hope you enjoyed this article. Don't forget to share your favourite miniature pictures and wargaming videos at
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  • NagaBaboon

    It’s a good question. I can;t help but feel if you’re a;ready paying 230 points you might as well go all out and take all missile launcher, and all upgraded weapons but I do like the idea of mixing primary weapons, a lascannon on the searg and grav cannons on the others maybe?

    Saying all that it does just seem to much to give them a landraider as useful as it is. Unless I was taking it as much for it’s weapons and fire magneting (if that’s a word) I’d be loathed to chuck that many points onto a single unit no matter how resilient.

  • Douglas Nicol

    I’m running
    2x lascannon + missile launcher
    1 x Grav cannon + missile launcher + omniscope
    @ 290
    Seems out perform my devs buy quite a bit

    • Zweischneid

      Cool. So what you do with that one Grav cannon? Seems curiously short-ranged to .. well … everything else. Not an issue?

      • Douglas Nicol

        the grav cannon is there for TEQ’s that deep strike into the my back field other wise i just use his missile launcher

  • Lysere

    Just as an FYI the sergeant gives both rules to the squad so he doesn’t have to be the one split firing if you want.

    Still debating what I’ll be taking on them once I get some.

    • Zweischneid

      Yes. Goes with the whole 6th Edition “if-one-model-has-it-all-of-them-have-it”, etc..

      In that particular case, small units of 3, I don’t really see the advantage. Even in units of 6, it’s still only one model that splits (and it may as well be the Sergeant).

      A pity actually that Split Fire isn’t something like 1/3 of the unit can shoot a different target, or something along those lines.

  • Simpaul

    mine are equiped with gav weapons and hurrcan bolters while the serg has lascannon and hurraca bolters. The benifit of the bolters is that at rapit fire range you get 6 shots with rerolls. and the gav weapons are spot on played with them last week first turn took at a pred then on when it turned up took out a storm raven pluss all of the marines they killed off.

  • BrassScorpion

    I started with Warhammer in 1989 and it’s fun seeing all these elements of Rogue Trader and 2nd Edition coming back into the hobby. I’ll probably put Grav Cannons on all three members of a small squad. I’ve got plenty of the other weapons like Lascannons and Heavy Bolters on other models in the army, so why not add something completely new to the collection? Besides, my teenage son who has been playing 40K for ten years and who wins tons of games tells me to go all Grav Cannons, so who am I to argue? :)

    • Zweischneid

      You win!

      Not gonna argue against that :)

      • BrassScorpion

        I’m wondering how I want to equip a new plastic 10-man Sternguard Squad. The new set comes with stormbolters, numerous combi-weapons including new graviton options and of course all the special weapons: flamer, graviton, melta and plasma. Then there’s the heavy flamer, grav pistol for sergeant, etc. I’m overwhelmed with choices! I have one squad of the older pewter Sternguard models already, I’m not sure at all how to build a new plastic one.

        • Zweischneid

          That’s probably not as straightforward an answer as with the Centurions.

          Depends on what you want them to do.

          2 HFlamers for 10 is a steal, put em in a drop pod with a Librarian (Pyro!), perhaps Salamanders Chapter Tactics, even more combi-Flamers, etc. if necessary, and force a gazillion saves on somebody.

          Or more long-range scoring, with Pedro perhaps, Kraken rounds at 15″ Rapid Fire, Plasma, etc..

          Need to figure out what you want them to do in your list I guess.

  • Fulcrum

    I wouldn’t equip them with anything & same myself $80 for 3 ugly inefficient models.

    • Fulcrum


      • Omnia incendunt

        Absolutely agree. this thread had me almost reconsidering them but
        for $80 or nearly £50 centurions simply can’t afford to be a “hmmm, Maybe” Unit

  • cjb

    I know they aren’t meant to be a cc squad but I was a little disappointed in the lack of power fists for these guys (as well as an invuln save) I felt like they were meant to be the marine version of obliterators. For their point cost I’m not quite sure why you would ever take them. Sure they have toughness 5 so they won’t be instant killed to easily, but when a strength 10 weapon does show up they won’t be around too long. I feel the assault versions will be out done by assault terminators that only cost a little bit more but have more attacks and a possible 3+ invulnerable save. Not to mention the already over saturation of elite choices for marines. The devastator versions are the only ones with access to the grav-cannons but like you said, with out mobility how much can they really do with them? I feel a devastator squad or predator will be better in the long run.

  • Stupid Waldo

    Personally I really like the look of the centurions. They’re right in line with the bulky armored look of space marines. I’m running mine as grav-cannon with hurricane bolters. I figure that they can pretty much annihilate any MC’s or high armored targets with ease. If nothing else, your opponent will think twice about moving his wraithknight within 36″ of a land raider transporting them, knowing that it probably wouldn’t survive a single shooting turn from them

  • Thandalor

    People seem to be overlooking the Stormraven or even the Caestus Assault Ram from forgeworld which in my oppinion are much better options for transport. And both cheaper than a land raider.

  • Moivin26887

    I was thinking (as an absolutely ridiculous points sink)
    3 Centurions, All Grav, All Missiles
    TDA Libby + Relic Shield (Level 2 with whatever powers you like)
    Storm Raven with Multi Melta, Plasma Cannon and Hurricaine bolters
    Ironclad Dread
    Escorted by Storm Talon with Skyhammer Missiles.

    At over 700pts this is an ugly great lump of points which may not even arrive until turn 4 but…

    Say it does turn up turn 2, the raven and talon will churn up the ground beneath them carving a bloody furrow for your centurions, libby and dread to pile out into, these guys will then make a comprehensive ring of death turn 3 with the 2 flyers buzzing about dishing out their own brand of mayhem, meanwhile you have 2 full units of marines in the back field sitting on Objectives drinking space coffee….

  • Urkbad

    I build mine with omniscope, all Missiles launchers and one grav canon. Versatile and can fire even when far away. And a threat to anything. The heavy bolters do also take their toll on MC, its harder to wound but you’re pumping so many shots you are bound to attract fire. Tried an allied DA librarian for power field generator…. they lost 2 wounds during the whole game and wrecked a lot of stuff. So it’s an option, especially since I run a white scars army, they sit back with a thunderfire cannon and play all day long.

  • JP

    I agree with the Omniscope. That could really give you some intriguing options. However, I feel that the missile launchers are too good NOT to take. A marine army has so many bolters in it already that no one will miss those hurricanes.
    But there is something in this article that was overlooked. The Centurion seargent is a character, which means he can get Precision shots on 6′s. Now think about the sheer volume of fire you can give that one seargent if you give him some combination of Hurricane bolters, heavy bolter, or GravCannon. That is ALOT of potential for rolling 6′s. You can even give him a missile launcher and gravcannon for potential AP2/3 precision shots. I’m not saying it’s something that should be relied upon, but it should be taken into consideration, that every once in a while you can put a Precision shot from a powerful weapon onto any model you feel needs to be singled out and eliminated. At 24 in, with gravcannon and missile launcher, you can pump out 6 AP2/3 shots and should statistically get 1 precision shot each time you shoot. That’s a big deal on overwatch too, should you be unable to prevent someone from getting to charge them. You can possibly take out a squad leader with a special melee weapon, making it much harder for that unit to hurt the centurions in combat, and giving you a chance to get backup to them.

    Taking that into consideration here’s what I’ll probably end up doing -
    Seargent – Omniscope, Missile Launcher, GravCannon
    Dudes- Missile Launchers, and Either Heavy Bolters or Lascannons (depending on points)

    I think that gives them a good mix of weapons to handle just about anything, although I’ll still be Magnetizing like a MADMAN so I can use all the options for both versions of the squad!