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30K: Building My Emperor's Children - Part Three Elites

Time to move on to the Elite choices. The Force Org chart for the Age of Darkness (30K) allows up to 4 choices in the Elite spot. Which is great, because there are many great options for this slot. As discussed previously, I'm using the Pride of Legion Rite of War which makes Legion Terminators and Legion Veteran Tactical squads troops. So no need to discuss again here. So what are the other options?

  • Techmarine Covenant
  • Apothecarion Detachment
  • Dreadnought Talon
  • Mortis-Dreadnought
  • Contemptor Talon
  • Mortis-Contemptor
  • Rapier Weapons Battery
  • Rylanor the Unyielding
  • Palatine Blades
Let me rule a few out, as they do not fit my theme.

Rapier Weapons Battery

These static gun platforms, whilst cheap and effective, do not fit my fast attack theme. So none in my list.

Techmarine Covenant 

I'm sure there are plenty of Techmarines rolling around with Eidolon's forces keeping his machines in the perfect working order, however I really can't see my force deploying any. The Elites slot is going to be highly contested within my force so I need all the slots I can get and the Techmarine just doesn't fit right with me. For Iron Hands or Iron Warrirors, yes, but not for my Emperor's Children.

Dreadnoughts and Mortis-Dreadnoughts

There's nothing wrong with these. They are cheap and thanks to 7th Edition, they are more survivable. The main problem I have with Dreadnoughts is that they aren't Contemptor Dreadnoughts. The model is very static and dated, unlike the Contemptor which I will discuss later. 

Now, it's time to talk about the Elites I do want to take.

Apothecary Detachment

Apothecaries are great, they give 5+ Feel No Pain to any unit they are attached to. They have access to an Augury Scanner, which gives the unit Interceptor rule, they can also take Artificer Armour. This is my preferred load out, and they work very well in making a large blob of Tactical marines more survivable. I will model at least 3 of these to use within my army. It's also extremely fluffy for Emperor's Children, who were known to have a large contingent of Apothecaries.

Contemptor Dreadnought Talon

Contemptor's are my favourite models, full stop. I was always going to have a couple of these. In 30K you can take the Contemptor in Talon's groups of up to 3 units, but operate independently after deployment. What makes them so great is that they great an Invulnerable save from their Atomantic shielding, which confers a 5++ from shooting attacks and a 6++ in close combat. It adds 1" to any explosion result that the Contemptor may suffer, so be wary of that. It also has fleet, which means it can get across the table pretty quickly. It can be armed with an assortment of weapons, the Kheres assault cannon is my favourite. 24" Str6 AP4 Heavy 6 Rending is brutal. Add in a close combat weapon with either Heavy flamer, Plasma blaster or Meltagun this Dreadnought is scary at both ranged and close combat attacks.

Mortis-Contemptor Dreadnought

The Mortis variant comes in at 20 points cheaper than its brother. It loses a weapon skill point and fleet capability, but it gains the Helical targeting array. If the Mortis remains stationary, it gains skyfire and interceptor special rules. It's perfect for taking out flyers, but also great for support fire when taken with Dual Kheres Assault Cannons.

I've chosen to take 2 Contemptors at this point, with four Kheres Assault Cannons and two Close Combat Claws. I can then equip both Contemptors in a variety of ways.

Rylanor the Unyielding. 

Rylanor is a Special Character for the Emperor's Children, that takes an Elite spot. He's a Loyalist Emperor's Children, and will not feature in my army unless I do a Crusade game, pre-heresy. So what makes him special compared to normal Contemptor? A Contemptor with a Kheres Assault Cannon, Dreadnought Close Combat Weapon with Heavy Flamer comes to 200 points, Rylanor is 255 points. For the additional 55 points you get:

  • Crusader; extra dice when rolling run move, an extra D3 with sweeping advance.
  • Venerable; Re-roll penetration result.
  • Mantle of Glory; Friendly units within 24" re-roll failed morale checks and +1 to assault result.
  • +1 Weapon Skill.
A steep price to pay, but you get some great additional rules. I would recommend him for any loyalist EC players out there. I will have the weapons and the model to play Rylanor, but I will usually run a standard Contemptor.

Palatine Blades

Palatine Blades are a warrior fraternity drawn from the finest swordsman in the Legion and operate outside the legion formation. It seems fitting that a squad of these guys should accompany Eidolon. They come with the chosen warrior special rule, which means they can accept and refuse challenges as if they were characters.

As standard they come armed with bolt pistol and a Charnabal sabre. The sabre is a rending weapon that gives +1 initiative in challenges. It's these guys that will 'Heroic Intervention' for Eidolon if he is unable to insta-kill on a first turn challenge with his at initiative thunder hammer attack. 

They can also take Phoenix power spears, which is str +1 and AP2 on the charge, and AP3 in normal combat. A mix of both Charnabal sabres and Phoenix power spears would be great. They can also take Sonic Shriekers (+1 initiative in the first turn) and will need Jump packs to keep up with Eidolon. The Sergeant has Artificer Armour as standard and can be equipped with melta bombs.

I plan to take 6 in a force (Number of Slaanesh)  to escort Eidolon, a fluffly and excellent close combat unit.


A recap of what I plan to build for my Elite slot:
  • 2x Contemptor Dreadnoughts
  • 4x Kheres assault cannons
  • 2x Close combat claws
  • 3x Apothecaries
  • 2x Palatine Blades (Some I will use as sergeants for my Veterans and tactical squads)
  • Jump Packs (for Palatine Blades)
  • Phoenix power spears (will have to search eBay or alternative spears)
I plan to purchase two Contemptors, one Emperor's Children Variant and the other a Relic Contemptor. The Relic is covered in Aquilla's and looks very like an Emperor's Children model, I have some brass etch to add some Emperor's Children symbols to complete the look. 

I've been donated a 40K Apothecary, which I will convert to 30K. I will continue to look out for cheap Apothecaries on ebay to convert. If anyone has any left over bits from Grey Knights Terminator sets I am taking donations! :)

I've already started work on my Contemptors and you can find them in other posts on this blog. So excited to finish these off. As always, I would love to hear your feedback or comments on your chosen elite slot.


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