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.
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!).
- 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.
- 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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