Sometimes the only solution to a problem is a complete lack of anything resembling subtlety.
A Rhino Transport grown several orders of magnitude too large, the mighty Land Raider is one of the biggest available tanks that Space Marines and Chaos Space Marines can field. Its firepower is incredible, and its armor betrays no weakpoints: it has maximum armor (14) for every side, something that only the Necron Monolith, Necron Pylon, and Spartan Assault Tank share with the Land Raider; not even Baneblades have this. Its armor is pretty much only beaten by Warlord Class battle titans. It can also transport Terminators. This is the Metalboxiest of all the Metal Boxes.
- 1 Overview
- 2 Variants and Such
- 2.1 Phobos Pattern
- 2.2 Venerable Land Raider
- 2.3 Chaos Land Raider
- 2.4 Crusader Pattern
- 2.5 Redeemer Pattern
- 2.6 Ares Pattern (Chapter Approved)
- 2.7 Terminus Ultra Pattern (Warzone: Damnos)
- 2.8 Achilles Pattern (Forge World)
- 2.9 Helios Pattern (Forge World)
- 2.10 Prometheus Pattern (Forge World)
- 2.11 Proteus Pattern (Forge World)
- 2.12 Excelsior Pattern (Warhammer World exclusive)
- 2.13 Looted Land Raider
- 2.14 Grav-Raider
- 3 External Links
- 4 Gallery
The Land Raider has always been a somewhat insane beast, owing to its large weapon load and the fact that only part of this load can usually fire at a given time, making it so that it's of questionable value - this is because there are almost always better choices to do what the Land Raider can do for cost - Predators generally do better at vehicle busting or infantry killing, and the main use of the Land Raider is as a transport vehicle for Terminators and getting them right into the heart of the battle, which is kind of lopsided with its heavy armament.
Even with this, the Land Raider is still something of a good combat vehicle, if only because of the changes to the 5th edition vehicle weaponry rules. Stationary, the Land Raider can fire off all its weaponry in a salvo, which is especially good for the Chaos version, which can mount a Havoc Launcher to add a little extra infantry-raping punch. The Grey Knight version is also notable (Psycannon Bolts help this thing a lot) since it's pretty much the only heavy tank Daemonhunters get.
Make no mistake: It may be inefficient, large, and points-heavy, but the Land Raider is still a powerful force and should not be underestimated under any circumstances. Virtually any form of Land Raider is a daunting foe if it sticks around, whether it has troops in it or not. AV14 all around makes it a tough nut to crack without dedicated anti-armor weapons, and the Land Raider still is likely to survive the opening salvo, especially if it has extra armor. However, keep your Land Raider away from dedicated anti-heavy armor (railguns, melta), or you will very quickly feel the pain of losing all those points.
And before you say it, a Land Raider is not a main battle tank or an armored personnel carrier; it is an infantry fighting vehicle like the Razorback, since it can carry people inside and provide heavy fire support (hence Infantry and Fighting). A Baneblade is a main battle tank (well, it is if you don't accept the term heavy or superheavy battle tank), a Rhino is an an armored personnel carrier, a Land Raider is an Infantry Fighting vehicle (though perhaps you could throw in heavy into that term). Well, that is unless you can actually get the Ares and Terminus Ultra pattern models, who traded their transport capabilities for even more and bigger guns, where they're pretty much
MBTs an assault gun and a tank destroyer respectively...Okay, now that that's over, the original Land Raider was designated an MBT by the man who found the STC and whom the vehicle is named after, Arkhan Land. If the theory that the Land Raider Proteus is actually the default/original variant of the Land Raider is correct, then the Land Raider IS an MBT, it's just that the variants that permitted honest troop capacity were utilized more often by the Assault-happy Astartes to the point that Land Raiders are now known by the more common offspring of the original pattern.
In terms of appearance, a Land Raider is basically a cross between giant World War I Mark series tank and a modern armored fighting vehicle. It's shaped more like the latter, but the exposed treads on the entire front of the tank and the sponson mounted guns resemble the former. Oddly, the placement of sponson mounted guns on the Mark series tank was a feature implemented so the tanks could fire into enemy trenches more easily; after the war, that design was scrapped in favor of rotating turrets that gave an entire 360 degree firing arc (cannons on a Mark tank could only be pointed at things in front of them or to the side, they could not aim behind it).. Why GW decided to model something after this is a mystery, but they seem to have a thing for giving the Imperium of Man pre-
Cold WarWorld War II vehicle designs. Isn't it obvious? The Mark I was a British invention! And now for the low price of $110 a piece! Holy shit.
Variants and Such
The Land Raider has a ton of variants. Some of the more noteworthy ones are listed below.
The basic one has two Twin-Linked lascannons in sponsons (called "Godhammer" pattern, for some odd reason) and a twin-linked heavy bolter, making it some kind of heavy infantry fighting vehicle derpfish. It's very flexible, but ultimately rather inefficient. The Predator Annihilator is better at tankbusting, as it can unleash 3 lascannon beams, one of which is twin-linked, plus a Hunter-killer missile if you've taken one, whereas the Land Raider only has 2 twin-linked lascannon (though the Land Raider can take a pintle-mounted Multi-Melta, which can one-shot almost any tank). The Predator Destructor is better at killing infantry; 2 shots from an Autocannon and 6 more from Heavy Bolters shred all kinds of medium/light infantry, plus two more shots if you choose to add a Storm Bolter, whereas the Land Raider only has the single twin-linked Heavy Bolter to fight infantry (plus an optional storm bolter). The Rhino is generally a better transport for its price, only falling short in its inability to carry Terminators. The Land Raider stands apart from the Predator and Rhino because it can fill multiple duties at once (it's recommended that you add a Storm Bolter/Multi-Melta, extra-armor, and Hunter-Killer missile to help in this task), and is the only vehicle in many armies that allow a unit to disembark and assault in the same turn. It may be schizophrenic, but it is effective, especially if you use it right. Now in 7e, put 3 in the Land Raider Spearhead Formation for 750 points stock and you got a lethal counter to those super-heavies, gargantuan creatures, and buildings with Mighty Bulwark thanks to the reroll failed to wound/armor penetration.
Venerable Land Raider
The Adeptus Custodes also have their own sub-variant of the Phobos/Godhammer Pattern Land Raider called the aptly named Venerable Land Raider which is a Land Raider bristling in gold to blind the enemies of men with the superiority of the Bling. Venerable Land Raiders ignore shaken and stunned results and also comes with some pretty cool upgrades as well now like a 5+ invulnerable save from the aegis ability all for 275 points. Other than that there is very little difference armament wise other then being a 'cheap' (For Custodes standards anyway) replacement to the vastly superior Coronus Grav Carrier. Still don't try to underestimate this sub-variant as the cargo its holding just so happens to be dudes who can tear your Riptide a new asshole.
Chaos Land Raider
Functionally identical to the Phobos Pattern Land Raider, the Chaos version has a number of small changes that actually make it quite a bit better than its standard counterpart. It has Assault Vehicle like the loyalist, meaning that troops exiting it can assault the same turn, and it can be further specialized as an assault transport with Daemonic Possession, Extra Armor, and Dirge Caster. It can also be turned into a better combat vehicle due to its ability to pack on a Havoc Launcher; this gives it the ability to fire a few clusters of blast templates downrange for those using it as a heavy offensive vehicle. You can alternately pack on a Combi-Bolter and Combi-Flamer/Melta, and they're even comparable with Havoc Launcher in current codex. It's usually a bit more valuable to Chaos than it is to the Loyalists as a result. However, unfortunately for Chaos; this is the only kind of land raider they get, and compared to some of the other things on this list, it's out-specialized by other Land Raiders - the Crusader does Assault Transport (arguably; Daemonic Possession does a LOT to make this thing more dangerous, or DID before the rules change made Daemonic Possession cause the Chaos Raider to randomly eat passengers) better, and the Ares, Redeemer, and Achilles handle massed infantry better, whilst the Terminus Ultra is basically a tank destroyer. Add to this that the Chaos Land Raider doesn't have Power of the Machine Spirit rule that loyalist Land Raiders have, and the Chaos Land Raider is more limited in the ways it can shoot. However, like the Godhammer, the Chaos Land Raider can handle multiple simultaneous roles as needed, which, paired with the Chaos Land Raider's generally-better utility makes it something of a decent deal. Worth using if you have the points to spend, or if you have some big nasty close-combat squad that absolutely MUST get into close-combat.
Began by the Black Templars, and spreading, eventually, to some of the other Marine chapters, including the Grey Knights, who were given a few for helping the Templars out once, the Crusader Pattern Land Raider forgoes long-range firepower in favor of a dedicated role as an assault transport/infantry fighting vehicle, generally making it a bit more effective at getting into the enemy's face and spewing out a truly immense amount of dakka. Armed with a pair of Hurricane Bolter sponsons, an optional Multi-Melta (for vehicle rapage), and twin-linked Assault Cannons, the Crusader Pattern basically delivers a truly beautiful amount of dakka at (twelve bolters, and two assault cannons=some 272+ rounds per second) close range (with the Multi-Melta being there to deal with the errant vehicle threat) before disgorging its troops into the heart of enemy forces. Making it even better, the Crusader holds more men and has Frag Assault Launchers, ensuring that the disembarking troops gain the benefits of Frag Grenades (which Terminators normally lack).If you play Dark Angels, you owe it to yourself to play at least one game where this beast is boosted by a Banner of Devastation and some power fields, for an utterly hilarious TWENTY FOUR twin linked bolter shots all protected by an AV 14 4 HP 4++ monster of a vehicle. All of this, however, comes at the price of the baseline Land Raider's raw offensive punch (unless you're fighting guard/cultist/ork/tyranid blobs, then you will eat people) - fight accordingly.
The Redeemer is designed to maximize close-range punch. Whilst it's not the balls-out dedicated infantry-fighting vehicle/assault transport that the Crusader is, the Redeemer packs on considerably heavier firepower. It maintains the Assault Cannons, Frag Assault Launcher, and optional Multi-Melta, but replaces the sponson-mounted Hurricane Bolters with a pair of Flamestorm Cannons - functionally improved Flamers with S6, AP3, the only drawback to them being that since they're sponson mounted they can't hit targets that are too close to the front or back of the Redeemer. Cheaper than the other Land Raiders, this is one of the more popular Land Raiders due to its slightly lower points-cost. Tends to annihilate infantry by the dozens once in-close and makes tyranblob crap itself in sheer terror, but seriously needs Extra Armor. Using these when facing Tyranids or bikes-heavy lists (Ravenwing) is highly recommended since they don't have any vehicles or anything with more than toughness 6. Flamers ignore any armour but 2+ saves and ALL cover saves, meaning you'll be BBQing nids and bikers negating their Venomthrope/bullshit rerollable jink save.
Ares Pattern (Chapter Approved)
Decides to say "Fuck that shit" regarding transporting and seeks to become the most destructive linebreaker around, trying to eclipse even the dreaded Leman Russ Demolisher and Vindicator. No transport capability, and costs about 50 points more than the standard Land Raider, but you get what you pay for; Twin-Linked Heavy Flamer Sponsons, Twin-Linked Assault Cannons and a fucking Demolisher Cannon make this thing filthy rape to anything with the misfortune of getting anywhere near it. This tank lacks tactical flexibility, as none of its weapons has a range of more than 24"(although due to power of the machine spirit its demolisher cannon actually has a threat range of 36"), but what it lacks in versatility it more than makes up for in close-range balls-out power, it concentrates on applying overwhelming fire-power to a single point in the enemy battle line. If your opponents weren't shitting bricks trying to kill/escape your Vindicators, they most assuredly will at the sight of this fucking thing. Tyranid players tend to weep tears of blood, piss themselves, and crap their pants all at the same time when these show up. Now if only Chaos had them so we could toss on a Havoc Launcher and make it possessed. Now that would be the ultimate blob destroyer.
With the release of the Typhon you could spend fifty more points to get two more hull points and upgrade your gun to 7" blast Ignores Cover, but with the Ares people might actually play you.
Terminus Ultra Pattern (Warzone: Damnos)
Now available as a free upgrade for a Land Raider formation in Apocalypse, but only as the exclusive ride of Antaro Chronus. The Yang to the Ares's Yin, and the second of the "fuck transporting!" Land Raiders, which lack transport capability and anything resembling subtlety, the Terminus Ultra is designed as a dedicated vehicle-killer, armed with a hilariously over-the-top three twin-linked lascannons and two single lascannons, the Terminus Ultra can overheat and explode if it fires the bulk of its Lascannon payload (you should know however, that the chances of this happening are tiny, you need to roll FOUR 1's when rolling to hit, or 1 in 1296). Known for making Vehicle units shit bricks, and for destroying Titans on its own. Beam spam and Shoop Da whoop indeed. There aren't many other vehicles that are better at the role of tank destroyer than this. Plop these in a nice easily defended spot where your enemy will have to bring his vehicles, superheavy vehicles, high value HQ units, monstrous creatures, and gargantuan through and turn their most valuable units into swiss cheese. Make a note, however, that it's generally inefficient for the role, is a huge target and becomes 100% useless if facing blob armies of any sort - fight accordingly.
Achilles Pattern (Forge World)
The Achilles Pattern is the most heavily armored Land Raider, and was originally-created by the Imperial Fists. The Achilles Pattern is a giant derpy hunk of metal, bristling with guns and designed to get in close, firing off heavy firepower before discharging its payload of troops right into enemy formations. Its armor is impervious to the Lance and Melta special rules and most other weapons suffer a -1 on armor penetration rolls (essentially its armor is the same as a Necron Monolith's prior to the 5th Edition codex, it's just that the rules are given different names). The only things killing it are heavy-bore anti-vehicle weapons like the Leman Russ Vanquisher outside of lucky shots with high-strength armor-piercing weapons, like a Baneblade or Terminus Ultra firing all of its weapons (thus using the law of averages to help in its attempt to pierce the armor), or anti-vehicle Titan guns (like those used by a Shadowsword or like the epic beamspam that can be unleashed by a Reaver or Warhound dual wielding Turbo-laser Destructors), or some weird shit like haywire, gauss, entropic touch and so on (because xenos are dirty cheaters). It mounts a devastating Thunderfire Cannon (which is a massive quad-barreled mortar that can cause several flavors of infantry death) and twin-linked Multi-Melta sponsons, but it carries only 6 people (that means only three termies), have no assault ramp and costs more than Ares and Terminus Ultra - generally those 6 places are for techmarine and his servitor retinue, or for command squad loaded with plasmaguns. The earlier Achilles Alpha prototype swapped the Thunderfire Cannon for a Quad Mortar and was equipped with twin-linked Volkite Culverins as sponson weapons.
Chaos Space Marines recently got access to this version of Land Raider as well through Imperial Armour volume 13. Along with access to all the typical upgrades for Chaos Space Marine vehicles, the Chaos Achilles swaps out the Thunderfire Cannon for a Quad Mortar, which is weaker and less capable of penetrating armor but compensates with the Pinning rule- and as a bonus, its pinning tests are made with a -1 penalty. On top of that, the Quad Mortar's Strength, AP, and Pinning test penalty all increase as the Chaos Achilles loses hull points, making it more and more deadly as it takes damage. This is of course assuming it isn't killed in one turn like most vehicles do in the current meta when they draw the ire of the nearest D-strength weapon. God fucking damn it.
Helios Pattern (Forge World)
The Helios Pattern Land Raider is designed for fire support, replacing the usual heavy bolters with a pair of twin-linked lascannons and sacrificing ten transport spaces for a missile battery from a Whirlwind. This allows it to provide heavy fire support at long ranges and with minimal opportunities for retaliation, though it's quite points-intensive for what it does, whilst the Achilles does it better. If you do use one, be sure to employ it with a shooty force that can actually use the damned thing, like a Devastator Squad. It was originally designed by the Red Scorpions, who didn't trust the Imperial Guard to provide them with artillery support. Of course, this means that you're probably going to use it as an artillery tank, meaning you still have transport space. And a lot of armor. That will probably go to waste because you didn't just get a Whirlwind instead. Which all brings us to the question: Just why?
It also has the option of taking an anti-air Hyperios launcher.
Prometheus Pattern (Forge World)
20 points more than a standard land raider, this variant loses a few transport spaces (it has 10, so no IC with your terminators) for two quad heavy bolters (because FUCK hordes) and some interesting abilities: you get to subtract one from your enemy's cover save (because hordes, again) and you also get to choose whether or not to add 1 to your reserve rolls. Essentially, you get to choose whether or not something comes in if you roll a 2. Not bad, does it's job fairly well. It's the only land raider that can't penetrate the armour of another land raider, so keep it away from tanks.
Proteus Pattern (Forge World)
The Proteus pattern is the latest in the long line-up of Forge World turning its sucky job of covering for GW's old models and fluff into a glorious winblob of Awesome. This is the old, goofy-looking Rogue Trader Raider, all grown up. Barely even considered a Land Raider, it doesn't even use the same Phobos-pattern chassis as all of the other Land Raiders do. This thing is so old that Eldar consider it old. This thing is so old it was a mysterious, time-shrouded relic when the Horus Heresy took place; i.e. the time from whence on all things made before that moment were mysterious, time-shrouded relics. This self-contained vehicle was supposedly used as a universal Main Battle Tank during humanity's first expansion, similar to the Leman Russ or Predator today; which just goes to show you how awesome things were back during the Dark Age of Technology. It was designed to combat all kinds of new and evolving enemies, as well as do exploratory recon work on unexplored worlds. So, on the wargame side of things, this thing is the metal-est box on the battlefield. It works like a normal Raider, with the option to switch out the lascannons for heavy bolters or Heavy Flamers. But now, it gets the Scout rule, it can screw with enemy reserves rolling or buff your own rolls, it can get the Achilles' anti-melta armor (but not the anti-Lance), and no Infiltrators can get within 24" of it. You can get a pintle-mounted multi-melta, heavy bolter, or storm bolter. But that isn't the best part. The best part is that Chaos gets it too. Finally, the Chaos Space Marines get to FIRE THEIR LAZORZ at multiple targets! And, Chaos gets to put on a pintle-mounted Havoc Launcher on top (so do loyal space marines as well if used in Horus Heresy and time span after that). And that thing is right next to the twin-linked Bolter, Heavy Bolter, or Multimelta we can put it too! The only downside to the Proteus is that it only has an 8 model transport capacity (assuming you take the Explorator Augury Web or the Ark of Unnameable Horror described below) due to its role as a universal tank, not a dedicated infantry ferry/weaponspam platform. It also lacks the frontal assault ramp and the Assault Vehicle rule, so don't even think about using this to drop termies. Loyalists should use it like a spearhead linebreaker, systematically killing tanks while screwing with reserves, and to safely transport some plasma gunners to rapid fire range.
The Chaos version doesn't get to use the Explorator Augury Web; instead, it gets Fear and a nasty toy called the Ark of Unnameable Horror. Whatever is in it is so horrible that anyone shooting at it has to take a pinning test before they attack- failing the test means the shooter must forfeit their attack and go to ground immediately. Although artillery, Fearless units, and units with no Ld score are exempt from this effect, it gives the Chaos Proteus an extra degree of protection against shooty foes, encouraging them to be used in a far more aggressive manner than their Loyalist counterparts. Of course, using it to ferry a few Havocs or Chosen to where they need to be is a good idea as well.
Excelsior Pattern (Warhammer World exclusive)
A newly announced variant of Land Raider described as a command tank, the ridiculously named Excelsior, (which means "high" so, highest landraider) has the Phobos' lascannon sponsons but replaces the hull heavy bolters with a grav-cannon and grav-amp, and it can take a combi-plasma as a pintle-mounted weapon instead of the standard Storm Bolter. It comes with a 6++ invulnerable save and built-in immunity to Crew Shaken and Crew Stunned, but that's not its main draw. That would be its Tactical Authority rule- at the start of each shooting phase, any model of the same faction as the Excelsior within 12" (18" with the right upgrade) gets their choice of Counter-Attack, Fearless, Hit and Run, Interceptor, Skyfire, Preferred Enemy, and Tank Hunters. Finally, it gains an extra +1 BS as long as it's within 24" of a Rhino Primaris.
Every once in a while, an Ork gets it into his head to capture, rather than blow up, a Land Raider, or salvage one from a bombed-out husk. Once the thing's been made suitably Orky, it makes for a great Battlewagon, and though most Orks extensively modify the design until little of the vehicle's original shape remains, a few enterprising Orks like the boxy design of the Land Raider, and modify their vehicle accordingly. Though it can no longer be considered a true Land Raider due to the various modifications the Orks have made to it, it's still killy and flash.
While it's never gotten a model, the existence of a Land Raider even larger than a Spartan Assault Tank fitted with anti-gravitic plates that allowed it to function as a skimmer has been mentioned in the Horus Heresy novels. Quite notably, Arkham Land used one as his personal transport, which was equipped with a turret-mounted quad- Volkite Caliver array. Incidentally, this also makes it the only known model of Land Raider with a turret-mounted weapon.
- Forge World talks about the history of the vehicle
- Original 4th Edition Land Raider Ares Datasheet from the original creator
- Updated 8th Edition Land Raider Ares Datasheet from the original creator
A Chaos Land Raider, impressively modded.
Another modded out Chaos Land Raider, belonging to the Emperor's Children. It functions as an assault transport and mobile crack party.
A Dark Angels Land Raider Ares
A Salamanders Terminus Ultra, in all of its Las-cannony glory. (IMMA FIRIN' MAH LAZORS!!!!!)
A Space Wolves Land Raider Helios. Aim away from eyes and face.
WE'Z GOT DA BEST BOX ON DA FIELD!
|Forces of the Adeptus Custodes|
|Command:||Companions/Hetaeron - Shield-Captain|
|Troops:|| Aquilon Terminator - Custodian Guard |
Sagittarum Guard - Sentinel Guard - Warder
|Walkers:|| Contemptor-Galatus Dreadnought |
Telemon Heavy Dreadnought
Venerable Contemptor Dreadnought
|Vehicles:|| Caladius Grav-Tank - Coronus Grav Carrier |
Drop Pod - Grav-Rhino - Gyrfalcon Pattern Jetbike
Pallas Grav-Attack - Rhino - Venerable Land Raider
|Flyers:||Orion Gunship - Stormbird|
|Titans:||Warlord-Sinister Pattern Battle Psi-Titan|
|Auxiliaries:||Sisters of Silence|
|Forces of the Adeptus Mechanicus|
|Troops:|| Combat Servitors - Electro Priest - Enginseer - Kataphron Battle Servitors |
Myrmidon - Secutarii - Skitarii - Tech Priest - Tech Thrall - Thallax - Ursarax
| Castellan-class robot - Cataphract-class robot - Colossus-class robot |
Conqueror-class robot - Crusader-class robot - Scyllax-class robot
Thanatar-class robot - Vultarax stratos-automata
|Walkers:||Ironstrider Ballistarius - Onager Dunecrawler - Sydonian Dragoon|
|Vehicles:|| Chimera - Galvanic Servohauler - Karacnos Assault Tank - Krios Battle Tank |
Land Raider - Macrocarid Explorator - Minotaur Artillery Tank - Ordinatus
Rhino Transport - Triaros Armoured Conveyer
|Flyers:||Avenger Strike Fighter - Lightning Fighter - Storm Eagle|
|Titans:|| Imperator Battle Titan - Imperial Knight - Reaver Battle Titan |
Warhound Scout Titan - Warlord Battle Titan
|Forces of the Inquisition|
|Command:|| Inquisitor (Ordo Malleus Inquisitor - Ordo Hereticus Inquisitor |
Ordo Xenos Inquisitor)
|Retinue:|| Acolyte - Arco-flagellant - Astropath - Banisher - Cherubim |
Chiurgeon - Crusaders - Daemonhost - Death Cult Assassin
Jokaero - Hierophant - Mystic - Sanctioned Psyker
Sage (Autosavant - Lexmechanic - Sister Dialogous)
Servo-skull - Servitor - Sister Hospitaler - Pariah - Penitent
Ministorum Priest - Militarum Veteran Squad - Warp-Seer
|Auxiliaries:|| Inquisitorial Stormtroopers - Deathwatch - Grey Knights |
Sisters of Battle - Callidus Assassin - Culexus Assassin
Eversor Assassin - Vindicare Assassin
|Vehicles:|| Chimera - Land Raider (Land Raider Crusader |
Land Raider Redeemer) - Razorback - Rhino