Eliminator

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Want a way to make Space Marine Scouts both competitive and scary? Given them some actual Power Armor.

THE SHORT VERSION:

The sniper Veterans you always wanted, except they're Primaris.

THE LONG VERSION:

Eliminators are the Vanguard Primaris Marines sniper specialists. Think Scout Squads with actual Power Armor and thus, reasonable. They act as battlefield assassins for the Primaris Vanguard, using camo cloaks and specialized Bolt Sniper Rifles to pick off enemy leaders and disrupt infantry. They fulfill a long-standing gap most Space Marine armies have had since the Horus Heresy: a lack of dedicated sniper teams in power armor, just like the ye olde Legion Reconnaissance Squad. Role-wise, they are heavier, more specialised sniper scouts designed to camp in cover and strike key targets from a distance (even through walls) with a range of special ammunition.

Equipment[edit]

Eliminators are full-fledged marines in stealth-modified Phobos-pattern power armor that has been stripped of some of its armor and fitted with silenced servos. In addition to their standard krak and frag grenades and bolt pistol, Eliminators all go to war with camo cloaks and signature (now S5!) bolt sniper rifles. Their rifles can accommodate a variety of special ammunition including:

  • Executioner Rounds: The default ammunition type with high damage output, good armor penetration and a chance of inflicting mortal wounds.
  • Mortis Rounds: Specialist ammunition that is extremely accurate and ignores cover, but have reduced armour penetration and damage output. Used to eliminate foes that are completely out of sight.
  • Hyperfrag Rounds: Fragmentation rounds for horde killing. No armor penetration, but basically converts your sniper rifles to a longer ranged boltgun so your special ammnunition isn't wasted on Ork boyz.

The new Space Marine Codex further expands their wargear, notably adding las-fusils that are 36" Heavy 1 S8 AP-3 D3, giving them a surprisingly potent anti-armor punch, and finally giving Primaris Space Marines a way to fill the Lascannon-Devastator shaped hole in their lineup. Use Concealed Positions to drop them in cover with good firing lines, and harass enemy vehicles with your surprisingly-hard-to-shift 3 Power infantry unit.

For extra cheese, the Sergeant can also optionally be equipped with an Instigator Bolt Carbine, which enables him to use a Covering Fire ability that lets you move the entire unit immediately after firing Overwatch, before the charging unit can get stuck in and force the Eliminators into close combat. So, when someone tries to charge melee bruisers into your long range fire support squad, they can Overwatch, immediately move away before any combats can be resolved without having to eat the penalties of falling back, and then on your following shooting phase, they and the rest of your gunline can light up those units that your opponent probably used a stratagem to deepstrike into charge distance. Basically, with this upgrade, the only way your opponent will get this unit into melee is by charging it with multiple units from multiple directions.

Tabletop[edit]

For fluffy players of Raven Guard or Raptors who have long waited for a dedicated sniper unit other than Sniper Scouts, Eliminators are grand. Their competitive usage is yet-to-be seen, but they are notable for being one of the few infantry units in the game that can target foes outside of line-of-sight, meaning that plinking off a Guard officer behind a tall rock is now a thing.

They have the ability do deep strike, but this is at odds with their long-ranged fire support role to use Concealed Positions, setting up during deployment anywhere on the board that is more than 9" away from the enemy deployment zone or enemy units. This allows your sneaky snipers to set up in favorable fire positions outside of your normal deployment zone.

As a Heavy Support choice, they compete heavily with other units that could go into the slot and they lose ObSec, diminishing their value as objective campers. They are intended to be deployed as a fire support unit, not an objective holder (you have Infiltrators, Incursors, and Intercessors for that on top of regular Scouts).

When entrenched in cover with their camo cloaks, they have comical durability - a 2+ save that ignores the first point of AP means that nothing short of plasma guns will even remotely threaten them at long range. At short range, they can beat a retreat from charging enemies using Covering Fire, thus avoiding any melee meatshredders. They also have the signature 2W of Primaris marines.

Although the optional las fusils give them the capability to serve in an anti-vehicle role (which is itself much needed given the near total absence of designated anti-vehicle weapons among Primaris infantry), they are defined by bolt sniper rifles, which are a versatile anti-infantry weapon. With all ammunition profiles, bolt sniper rifles can target Characters at will. Their standard ammunition is a scout sniper rifle shot with AP-2 and D3 damage, instead of AP0 and 1 damage. On average rolls, Eliminators will have 2 damage per shot and a much-needed AP value for sniping. Their most unusual round is the Executioner round, capable of targeting foes entirely outside of line of sight at AP-1 and 1 damage. Executioner rounds also add an incredible +2 to hit to their attacks, meaning your snipers hit on 2's and ignore a single -1 to Hit penalty entirely. Their last round is a Heavy D3 36" boltgun for token horde clearing, but your points really are wasted every time you don't fire at a character with these weapons.

Finally, for those extra tricky targets, the Sergeant can skip shooting to instead use the Guided Aim ability, spotting targets for the other two snipers in the squad and thus giving them a +1 to both Hit and Wound rolls.

Trivia[edit]

On page 7 Vanguard Space Marine Mini-dex, Mortis rounds are described as carrying a payload of self-replicating mutagenic acid, while executioner rounds are described as self guided missiles able to navigate around cover. Care should be taken to note their crunch profiles are the other way around. (Fixed in the new Codex)

Forces of the Primaris Marines
Command: Primaris Ancient - Primaris Apothecary - Primaris Captain
Primaris Chaplain - Primaris Librarian - Primaris Lieutenant
Vanguard Librarian - Vanguard Lieutenant - Helix Adept
Troops: Aggressor - Eliminator - Hellblaster - Inceptor - Incursor
Infiltrator - Intercessor - Reiver - Suppressor
Vehicles: Impulsor - Invictor Tactical Warsuit
Redemptor Dreadnought - Repulsor Tank
Super Heavies: Astraeus Super-Heavy Tank
Flyers: Overlord
Allies: Space Marines