In a triumph of the middling, a nod to mediocrity, and with gorge rising, it gives me great nausea to announce the Custodes Venerable Contemptor Dreadnought – the subject of today’s article.
This lapdog of Elite choices is as dull as he is unremarkable, as lackluster as he is soporific. This reversion to the mean, this reubke to the exemplary, gives hope to the millions of datasheets unfavored by the exceptional. Not the worst. Not the best. Just what we’re stuck with if the event we are going to bans Forge World.
Now that Adam Sorkin’s lawyers have something to work with, let’s crack into our analysis. The Contemptor in the Custodes codex is boring and forgettable. Not even the new stratagems in War of the Spider can make it appealing. It’s something you do with the random model you never painted from the Betrayal at Calth box for that sick Heresy-era Imperial Fist army that is gonna happen just as soon as you find the right yellow recipe.
Clocking in at 155 points, this dread initially seems like an affordable choice in an otherwise pricey codex. It has two options for guns, either a multi-melta or a kheres pattern assault cannon. It also has a dreadnought close combat weapon with a built in combi-bolter.
A movement of 9 inches (that can degrade), WS and BS of 2 (that can both also degrade), Strength and Toughness of 7, 10 Wounds, 4 Attacks, Leadership 8, Armor Save of 2+, 5+ Invulnerable Save, and the ability to ignore damage on a 6 seems nice. It’s not good enough compared to everything else we’ve got.
155 points gets you 3 Custodes, it gets you 3 Sagittarum Guard, it can get you a Vexillus Praetor for less than that. It just isn’t worth it. Even if you make it an Eternal Penitent for a command point to give it an extra attack and let’s you re-roll charges. This makes it slightly more appealing. 5 Attacks at Strength 14 AP-3 and Damage 3 are not to be lightly dismissed, but this requires the dreadnought to get into melee with something that we care about. There aren’t too many targets that Custodes worry about being in melee with, and if that is the case, we typically have other solutions for them. The dreadnought just sufferers from trying to do a little bit of everything, and not really having anything much to offer.
Now we know that muli-meltas will soon change to gain another shot, this is potentially interesting. I really wish frankly that we could take two of them, then you might have my attention. Or two close combat weapons like a Telemon or some of the FW Contemptors can pick, but alas, we are stuck with being mediocre at everything. You could either From Golden Light they come him onto the battle or Strategic Reserves him off of the flanks, but why should we be investing our command points to turn something forgettable into something semi-useful when we can use those points to turn good things into amazing things?
Save your codex Dreadnought for games where you are teaching someone the game, or for Crusade campaigns. This is not the option for tournaments or competitive leagues, it will leave you feeling disappointed. Just ask Jed Bartlet.
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