Space Marine Review: Heavy Support: Centurion Devastator Squad

Hi everyone, Michael here with a review of the Centurion Devastator Squad. These guys were the business in 7th edition, how do they fare in the 8th edition of 40k? For more reviews and analyses, check out the Tactics Corner.

Overview:

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. I think Centurion Devastators suffer the issue of having been far too good in 7th edition. They are not a bad unit in 8th edition on paper, being able to put out quite a lot of strong firepower on the move. However, their points cost ranges from prohibitive to insanely expensive depending on the weapons options. The base centurion Devastator Centurion Squad costs 110 pts (so 330 points for a minimum sized unit) and can be fielded in squads of 3-6.

The Centurion Devastator Squad gets a Situational rating. That situation being “never going to see the tabletop again!).

Wargear:

  • Two Heavy Bolters
  • Hurricane Bolter
  • Any model may replace the Hurricane Bolter with a Centurion Missile Launcher (36″, Assault D3, S8, AP-2, D3 damage).
  • Any model may replace their two Heavy Bolters with two Lascannons or a Grav-cannon and Grav-amp.

Abilities:

  • And They Shall Know No Fear
  • Combat Squads- Before any models are deployed, a Centurion Devastator squad containing 6 models may be split into two units, each containing 3 models.
  • Decimator Protocols- Models in the unit do not suffer the penalty to hit rolls for moving and shooting Heavy weapons.
  • Omniscope- Enemy units do not receive the benefit of cover to saving throws for a unit that includes a Centurion Sergeant.
  • Keywords- Imperium, Adeptus Astartes, <Chapter>, Infantry, Centurion, Centurion Devastator Squad.

Tactics:

The Centurion Devastator Squad have a decent statline for a heavy infantry unit. They have WS and Bs 3+, S5, T5, 3 wounds, 2 attacks, Ld 7 and a 2+ save. Each Centurion comes with two Heavy Bolters and a Hurricane Bolter. This actually gives each centurion a decent level of anti-infantry firepower. At range, a squad of 3 Centurions will put out 18 Heavy Bolter shots and 18 Bolter shots (going up to 36 Bolter shots at rapid fire range). This actually allows them to take on weaker infantry units such as Cultists or Guardsmen and actually have a good chance of decimating or even wiping out these types of units. Even against heavier units, the volume of fire could do some damage simply through forcing your opponent to take enough saves.

They can move and fire their weapons without penalty, which is nice. However, with a 4″ move, they are not going to be going anywhere fast. You are better to just sit them in cover with a good view of the battlefield and keep them firing at the enemy army.

You can also upgrade them to having two Lascannons and a Centurion Missile Launcher each. A unit of three Centurions armed in this fashion will be a huge threat to any enemy vehicles or monsters on the table, putting out six Lascannon and 3D3 missile shots each shooting phase. With some average shooting rolls you should be able to cripple or even destroy enemy vehicles in a turn or two of shooting.

The Grav-cannon and Grav-amp is still a strong option, though maybe not the auto-include that it was before. You will get 12 shots with a basic squad, which is a decent level of firepower. You will probably want to be targeting enemy units with at least a 3+ save for the chance of doing additional damage. Against most vehicles, you will still be wounding on a 5+ though, so I wouldn’t expect your damage output to be amazing with the unit.

However, the biggest problem with the Centurion Devastator squad is their high points cost. The basic Centurion squad costs 330 points, which is a whopping investment for the damage they can put out. Arming them with two Lascannons and a Centurion Missile Launcher brings each Centurion up to 155 points, or an insane 465 points for the unit. The Centurions are only T5 with 3 wounds and a 2+ save. It’s not going to take a lot for your opponent to go through that in shooting or in assault. I think the Centurions will really struggle to make their points back in a game. They do have a good level of firepower, but will probably be a prime target for your opponent’s fire.

For me, the cost of the squad really is the deciding factor on fielding them. For 330 points, there are better options in the Space Marine codex. You could go for a Predator tank or two, a Devastator Squad or two for the same cost.

Unit Synergy

If you are planning to bring a Centurion Devastator Squad to the table, I would recommend pairing them with some of the support Characters available to the Space Marines.

An Apothecary will be great for healing the Centurions as they take damage or for bringing them back from the dead when they are slain. This will help to make your investment in them worthwhile if they can survive for several turns to fire on the enemy army.

An Ancient will also be of benefit to the Centurion Devastators, allowing them to still fire on the enemy army if they are slain. Paired with an Apothecary, the Centurions have a chance to fire when they are killed and also have a chance to be revived by the Apothecary.

A Captain is also a great support unit for the Centurions. He can provide re-rolls of 1 to hit, thereby maximising your firepower and investment, while also being able to go after threat to the unit that could tie them up in combat and stop them from shooting.

Chapter Tactics

The Ultramarines Chapter Tactic is great for Centurions. This unit really needs to be firing each and every turn to get the most out of them. Being able to Fall Back and still fire is great, stopping your unit from being tied up in combat with enemy chaff units is a great boost.

Salamanders Chapter Tactics are also useful, maximising your damage output with a re-roll to hit and to wound.

Raven Guard Tactics are great for keeping them alive for longer. You are going to want to keep the Centurions at range of the enemy army, so any penalty to being hit with enemy guns is a great bonus.

Iron Hands Chapter Tactics are also useful for perhaps keeping them alive a bit longer with a 6+ save against damage.

Overall

It’s hard to recommend the Centurion Devastator Squad in 8th edition. They are simply too expensive to be worth fielding in a Space Marine army. I think they need at least a 20 point cost reduction to even make them worth fielding, and even then there are still better options available.

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!

secondhandhsop

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About Michael Corr

An avid 40k player and blogger from Scotland. I started in 3rd edition and have been playing ever since. I detail my adventures in my own blog "St Andrews Wargaming", highlighting my mediocre painting skills, regular battle reports and my occasional random ramblings.

10 Responses to “Space Marine Review: Heavy Support: Centurion Devastator Squad”

  1. WestRider February 13, 2018 3:30 pm #

    I hope they get re-visited in the next Chapter Approved or something. As is often the case with GW, the pendulum swung a bit too far on these guys.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 13, 2018 3:35 pm #

      They’re very effective rules wise but a bit too expensive.

      • WestRider February 14, 2018 12:41 am #

        For the vast majority of things, that’s really what it comes down to. There are (potentially) a few things that are just flat out garbage at any price, and conversely, there can be things that are game-breakingly good at any price. But most things, whether they’re good or bad largely hinges on what they cost. So, hopefully the next CA will knock a few points off for them.

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 14, 2018 4:02 pm #

          Yeah, it is a difficult task to get points correct.

  2. Darthdiggler February 13, 2018 9:00 pm #

    In a game where everything can hurt everything these guys are priced out of the game. About the only thing I can think of is to put 4 of them inside a Vortex Missile Strongpoints with lascannons and Hurricane bolters. That way they have a huge firing angle that can cross multiple Los blocking terrain features with the huge size of the building and anything that comes close to the building will eat all those Hurricane bolter shots.

    • Michael Corr
      Michael Corr February 14, 2018 1:56 am #

      Yeah, the amount of points investment you need to put into these guys to make them work is just too prohibitive.

  3. Ishagu February 14, 2018 6:36 am #

    Centurions have great rules but are priced horribly. You can’t run a t5 model with 3 wounds for 110+ points. They move slow and have no invul or combat ability.

    A Centurion with Grav and Hurricane Bolters should be priced at the 80 point mark. Remember they need a transport too!

    • Michael Corr
      Michael Corr February 14, 2018 7:46 am #

      I think that would be a fair points level, or even 80 pts for the basic armament. Grav Cannons are still good in 8th edition thanks to volume of fire, but they are nowhere near as over-powered as they were in 8th edition (which is good in my opinion!).

  4. DM February 14, 2018 7:35 am #

    Love these reviews – keep them coming! I agree with your assessment of the Centurion Devs –
    too expensive to make their points back effectively in most cases. If you can get them in cover they can do well.. but man are they expensive. You should probably protect them with more infantry as well, meaning you need to devote even more points to them.

    Would be interested in your take on Centurion Assault Squads as well. I think they are in a better place points-wise to be effective in a list.

    • Michael Corr
      Michael Corr February 14, 2018 7:44 am #

      Thanks, good to know people are finding them useful. Yeah, you really need some sort of screening troops to stop them being tied up in assault, adding even more to their cost.

      I’ll take a look at the Centurion Assault Squad with my next set of reviews. Any more requests?

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