Updated: Jan 16
Greetings one and all,
Continuing with the release of plastic models, Gamesworkshop recently released the Land Raider Proteus, a tank that can only be described as being able to take the worst that the battlefields of the galaxy can throw at it and still ask for more. So, why don’t we have a look at how this tank is to build and how it performs on the tabletop?
Land Raider Proteus
The Land Raider Proteus kit builds two variants of the Land Raider; firstly, the basic version which is the Land Raider Proteus Carrier, and secondly the Land Raider Proteus Explorator. Formally, both of these were only available in the Forgeworld store (and yes, I know there has been a Land Raider Plastic kit for decades already, but not in this style), so it seems that Gamesworkshop is continuing the trend of turning Forgeworld models into plastic kits, which I don't think anyone is sad about.
The Land Raider is an odd beast though, as it’s basically a heavily armed and armoured personnel carrier. It’s a bit of a jack of all trades, but sadly that doesn’t make it good at any one thing (except being a bullet magnet).
When the Build Monkey and myself were first going over the Spartan, we commented that it looked like this was going to be used as the basis for another tank as there were extra sprues and pieces available that had no use and nowhere to go, so we both agreed this was likely going to be the Land Raider Proteus, and maybe the Spartans' other variants as well (such as the Typhon and Cerberus).
Much like building the Spartan, the Land Raider Proteus is a dream to build, with very clear instructions and yes, you can build either the Proteus or the normal type of Land Raider with the assault ramp. That said, you can’t exchange the front of the hull, so you had best be sure you’re getting the type you want from the beginning.
The sponsons are also like every other tank that’s been released so far; really easy to build and such an improvement over the old Land Raider or, heaven forbid the Predator. The improvement in quality is like night and day. They’re also detachable to help keep them safe during transport as well, which is a great bonus.
If you’re considering magnetising any parts of this build though, the only parts of the model that might be worth it are the hull-mounted weapons on both variants of the Land Raider. You’ll then be able to pick between a pair of Lascannons, Heavy Bolters, or Heavy Flamers when arming it for battle (not sure why you’d not want the Lascannons though, but eh, that's just me).
When considering how this build might fare on the tabletop, it’s important to consider both variants of the Land Raider as separate tanks. As such, I’ll be discussing them both individually from this point on.
The Land Raider Proteus Carrier has, like the beast of old, 2 sponson-mounted Gravis Lascannons and a hull-mounted Heavy Bolter as standard, plus a 12 model carrying capacity and an assault ramp. This all comes to a total point value of only 220, so if you have a dirty close combat unit you need to get into range of your opponents to wreak havoc this is a great vehicle, as it will get them to where they need to be while laying down a fair amount of firepower. If you choose though, the hull-mounted weapon can be exchanged for either a Heavy Flamers (for free), or Lascannons (at an additional cost of +15 points). As the Land Raider already comes with 2 sponson-mounted Gravis Lascannons, it makes sense to get the hull-mounted ones too, because at least then all your weapons will be effective on the same target.
Overall, I really like the Land Raider Proteus Carrier. But you know what I don’t like?
The Land Raider Proteus Explorator. It carries the same weapons as the Proteus Carrier, but it only carries 8 models and it doesn't have an assault ramp. And it even costs an extra 30 points?!
Okay, okay, so what does it have? Well, it gains the Scout rule (Pg.246 main rulebook), allowing you to re-deploy it within 12 inches of its original position, including outside of your deployment zone. It also gains Explorator Augury Web (Pg 142 Liber Astartes or Hereticus) which grants 1 of 2 modes per turn; first is Disruption Mode which inflicts a -1 to enemy rolls while bringing in reserves, and second is Relay Mode, allowing you to reroll your rolls for bringing in reserves… Maybe I’m missing something here, but honestly, I can’t see why you would take the Land Raider Proteus Explorator over the Proteus Carrier.
The Land Raider Proteus kit is a great kit no matter which one you’re building. The Land Raider Proteus Carrier is a great way to get those powerful units to where they need to be; it’s hardy and it also has some impressive firepower. While the Land Raider Proteus Explorator, exists… But at least it looks good. If you can find a use for it, then please let me know.
Overall, this kit was a pleasure to build and these continued releases of the previously Forgeworld-only models give me a lot of hope for eventually getting some plastic breachers as well.
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