Friday, August 22, 2014

Horus Heresy Review: Legion Vindicator

Genuinely, I'm quite fond of the vindicator as a tank. The Betrayal book explicitly notes that the vindicator finds a lot of use in both Iron Hands Legion and Sons of Horus Legion forces. But for my own part, I regularly use vindicators with my 40,000 Death Guard armies and have won some solid victories through the holes they've manage to punch in enemy lines.

My earlier reviews of Chaos Vindicators and Dark Angels Vindicators still applies in the Heresy era (modulo the daemonic possession stuff in the chaos variant, of course!). I think they make great tanks for many legion armies, but they are competing for a heavy support slot against other viable options here (assuming we're not playing with unbound armies). One interesting option available in the Heresy era is to replace the demolisher cannon with a laser destroyer array.

The only slight issue: we can only take one vindicator per heavy support slot (unlike, say, the Legion Artillery Tank Squadron which can feature up to three tanks, and similarly with the Legion Land Raider Battle Squadron).

Here are a few sample builds to think about.

Legion Vindicator, dozer blade, armoured ceramite (145 points)
I think this is probably the baseline vindicator for the Heresy / Great Crusade era. The use of the armoured ceramite is almost a given to protect against lance and melta a little better and the dozer blade to help the tank get where it needs to be.  Add a machine spirit and/or auxiliary drive to taste.

Legion Vindicator, Laser Destroyer Array, armoured ceramite (150 points)
With a slightly larger range than the destroyer cannon, the need to move around is lessened and I've removed the dozer blade. This is probably the baseline build for the laser destroyer variant.

Legion Vindicator, dozer blade, armoured ceramite, havoc launcher, machine spirit (185 points)
For when you have to get somewhere and you want to pressure the enemy significantly. Half tempted to replace the havoc launcher with a heavy flamer for counter charge purposes. At this price tag, it starts to get expensive though.

Legion Vindicator, Laser Destroyer Array, Heavy Bolter (145 points)
At first glance, this seems kind of odd. But then factor in that the weapons both have the same range and realise that this combination could be a character killer.

Legion Vindicator, dozer blade, hunter-killer missile (135 points)
Cheaper and highly expendable. This one - particularly if taken a couple of times and filling out the heavy support slot - can be a painful experience for an opponent.


Chris said...

Surprised you haven't consider running one naked as-is as an option.

I've found the vindicator underwhelming, but probably still worth 125 points for the Potential damage it may one day do to a terminator unit.

I don't know why you think armoured ceramite would help against lance. I think 20 pts is a bit steep for anything not AV14.

jabberjabber said...

Hi Chris,

Thanks for the comment!

I agree that a naked vindicator is very viable as an option. The only thing that makes me hesitate is that I cannot take them in a squadron or formation of three -- if so, I think I'd totally do so. But given its competing against other decent heavy support options, I'd prefer to spend some points on a few upgrades. And you're dead right about the damage it does to terminators: I've run triple vindicators in a 40k Death Guard list and had a devastating impact with them.

Regarding armoured ceramite. I think it is something of a meta-issue. If almost everything is armoured ceramite, then we force the opponent to think about close combat as the technique to eliminate all tanks on the table. Given that the front armour is AV13, I think its worth it here, to some extent - particularly against other Legion armies who might (probably?) have gone full melta for their tank destruction technique.

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