Adeptus Custodes Preview – Part 2: The Troops

After 10,000 years as the Imperium’s final line of defence, the Adeptus Custodes are marching forth from Terra in force, and thanks to a new codex, you’ll be able to lead them in battle with new units, Stratagems, Relics and much more. In the second of our daily previews this week, we’re looking at how the core unit of your army – Custodian Guard – have been improved in the new codex, as well as a powerful rule that applies across your entire Adeptus Custodes army.

Warhammer 40,000 has seen rules for the Adeptus Custodes before, but in the new codex, they’re more than just a collection of units – they’re an interconnected fighting force, rich with potent synergies for those with the cunning to unlock them and a Detachment-wide special rule that significantly rewards the disciplined list builder.

Firstly, the Aegis of the Emperor has been tweaked to also provide a 6+ additional save against any mortal wounds caused by psychic powers. This is both a thematic change and a practical one, representing the Emperor’s protection of his most cherished servants. It also helps you defend your units against Smite and other attacks that would otherwise cut through your high Toughness and excellent saves.

The Emperor’s Chosen gives every Infantry and Biker unit in a pure Adeptus Custodes Detachment +1 to their invulnerable saves, to a maximum of 3+. In practice, this means that none of your units, including Custodian Guard, will ever have worse than a 4+ invulnerable save. Combine this with the high Toughness and Wounds characteristics of Adeptus Custodes units, and your army just got a lot more durable, particularly against the kind of heavy weapons – lascannons, krak missiles and Dreadnought power fists – that previously presented a more substantial threat to the Adeptus Custodes.

The second part of the Adeptus Custodes Detachment rules is less immediately powerful, but still invaluable change to the army. As you may know, with Chapter Approved and every codex so far, most Troops in the game gain some version of Objective Secured, giving them scoring priority over units without the rule. Under the current rules, the Adeptus Custodes have struggled to score objectives compared to more armies with a higher model count, unable to cover every objective at once and without the necessary squad size to outnumber other units. All that is about to change…

All Infantry and Bikers in the Adeptus Custodes army gain Sworn Guardians, meaning whether or not they’re Troops, they’ll count as controlling an objective marker if the enemy doesn’t have any units with similar rules or more models. In practice, you’ll still have to work hard to neutralise your opponents’ Troops choices, but your Terminator-armoured Allarus Custodians and jetbike-mounted Vertus Praetors will be able to dive deep into enemy lines and secure objectives, while your Custodian Guard are under much less pressure to race to critical battlefield locations.

Custodian Guard themselves have received a variety of discreet improvements in the new codex. For one, they’re now BS 2+, allowing them to get a little more out of their surprisingly powerful attacks with their Guardian Spears. For another, they can now be taken in units of three, meaning if you build a Vexilla and a Shield Captain out of your Custodes set, you’ll still be able to build a playable unit with the remaining models. Finally, the Custodian Guard combine superbly with some of the new Stratagems in the book, particularly Piercing Strike, which makes wounding larger foes much easier.

It’s something of a tradition of the Adeptus Custodes to deliver golden death from the doors of an equally golden Land Raider. From Golden Light They Come, on the other hand, opens up new deployment options for your Custodian Guard, as well as other units in your army.

However you build your Adeptus Custodes army, the new codex is packed with benefits for your army. If you’re yet to start an Adeptus Custodes force, the Talons of the Emperor boxed set is a great way to do it, while if you want to learn more, we’ll have an in-depth preview tomorrow of what the new codex means for the war machines of the Adeptus Custodes – including the new Vertus Praetors.

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