Thursday, 3 November 2011
Apocalypse ~ Formation: Land Raider 'Iron Exemplar' Command Spearhead
Despite this I still plan to at least maintain some posts for Igota4. So here we have another Apocalypse review, this time from Imperial Armour Vol.9 - The Badab War, part 1.
Counted within the pages of the Codex Astartes as a particular formation of Land Raiders for use by elite Space Marine forces engaged in open armoured warfare, the 'Iron Exemplar' formation is intended to ensure the maximum survivability of those onboard during spearhead attacks in order to reach their targets. The concentrated power of the Land Raiders is used to punch a hole in an enemy defense line, while the marines on board, led usually by a captain, force a breach through which the rest of the Space Marine forces can advance.
One Land Raider or any type with a Space Marine Captain (including such special characters) and Command Squad, as well as two-four Land Raiders of any type each acting as dedicated transport to one of the following: Tactical Squad, Terminator Squad, Terminator Assault Squad, Sternguard Veteran Squad or Vanguard Veteran Squad.
Before including the 100pt formation cost this obviously makes the formation rather expensive in models alone, since the minimum three Land Raiders are not cheap, not to mention the Captain, Command Squad and additional units.
The common 'Strike Force' rule is replaced with a rule named Command Vehicle and works almost identical in that the Land Raiders must be deployed or come on from reserve within 12" of the command vehicle. However in this case it also seems to suggest that the command squad must be aboard their transport at such a time.
The first main beneficial rule of the formation is Inviolate armour, despite a rather large text box containing fluff and modelling notes the rule simply just negates the first Penetrating hit (caused by a non-destroyer weapon) each Land Raider suffers.
The last ability is Hearts of Iron, which grants Space Marine units that are part of the formation the Stubborn USR as long as they are within 6" of their dedicated Land Raider.
Thoughts, Opinions and final Review
Costly in points, but certain units in Land Raiders can be seen as a powerful force in Apocalypse (Thunder Hammer/Storm Shield Terminators are wonderful against Super-Heavies etc) so I'll only really consider the cost of the formation itself, in which case it seems rather good. For the effective cost of 20-33pts per Land Raider you can ignore a Penetrating hit which is quite lovely. Add that you also get Stubborn for the units in the right circumstance and you're great, especially since Stubborn & And They Shall Know No Fear work especially well together in combat.
Unfortunately Destroyer weapons ruin this formation since Inviolate Armour would not negate such a hit, which is most unfortunate and stops the formation being a wonderful anti-super-heavy formation. Considering that you generally need Destroyer, Lance or Melta to penetrate AV14 then the ability not applying to one of those three makes it seem rather unfortunate.
A lovely formation if you'd intend to use multiple Land Raiders and better than the other Land Raider formations (except perhaps the Lucifer Armoured Task Force) in my opinion. However Inviolate Armour's inability to affect Destroyer weaponry really lets it down, making it highly dependent.