Space Marines are getting Heavy Intercessors along with the release of Pariah Nexus – but who’s better? Intercessors vs Heavy Intercessors.
It’s time to do a side by side comparison of two of the new(er) core units in the Space Marine arsenal. Folks have been using Primaris Intercessors since the Primaris Marines were introduced and now with the release of Kill Team: Pariah Nexus Heavy Intercessors are getting models. But how do they stack on Paper? Let’s take a look.
Intercessors – Meat & Potatoes
This should come as no surprise, but they have one of the best “basic troop” stat lines in the game. They are Primaris Marines, afterall. Your basic unit of 5 comes with 4 Intercessors and a Sergeant. Each member must be equipped with the same type of Bolt Rifle and we’ve seen those variants on paper for a while now. The base Bolt Rifle is 30″ range, Rapid Fire 1, Strength 4, AP -1 and 1 damage. Then you’ve got the Auto Bolt Rifle which is Assault 3 up to 24″ and has str 4 with 1 damage for the cost of that -1 AP. And finally you have the Stalker Bolt Rifle which Adds 6″ of range, is Heavy 1 and goes up to -2 AP and 2 damage.
However you load them up, you’ve got a good firebase vs most infantry in the game. Plus, because they are Primaris, they can put up a fight in close combat thanks to their attacks (although having a power sword or fist in the mix REALLY helps). Again, we’re only looking at 5 of them in the squad for ease of comparison, but you can go up to a max of 10. They also clock in at 20 points per model (before weapon upgrades). That’s not a bad package overall.
Heavy Intercessors – The Beef
Stat-wise, Heavy Intercessors trade a point of movement for +1 Toughness and +1 wound. This makes them one of the most durable “basic troop” units in the game. They do cost more points wise as they clock in at 28 points per model (before weapon upgrades) and they cost 7 Power vs the Intercessors 5. So you’re paint a points/power premium. But what else does that net you?
You get access to some down-right scary Strength 5 shooting. Much like their counterparts, Heavy Intercessors have 3 new Heavy Bolt Rifle variants. The base version is the Heavy Bolt Rifle with a 36″ Range, Rapid Fire 1, Strength 5, AP -1 and 1 damage. From there you can swap them to the assault 3 version which is 30″ range and loses the -1 AP. Or you can go with the Executor Heavy Bolter which is 42″ range, Heavy 1, and also goes up to -2 AP and 2 Damage.
On top of that you also get access to a new Heavy Bolter, also with three variants. It follows the same pattern – the assault version drops in range and AP but adds a shot while the even heavier version drops in shots but adds range, AP and Damage.
Along with access to a Heavy Bolter another notable difference is the Heavy Intercessors don’t have access to a close combat weapon for the Sergeant. Sorry – no power sword or power fist to punch them out of a close quarters fight. At least squad can also go up to 10 men and that is a LOT of beef.
The Heavy Intercessors will certainly add some durability to your firebase along with some potent strength 5 shooting. But for a 5 man team, you’re paying 40 more in points (100 vs 140). While you are going to get some extra range, against anything T3 or lower, they are effectively the same. However, the Heavy Intercessors do start to pull ahead vs T4 or harder targets.
Basically, against other Marines, you’ll notice the benefits of the Heavy Intercessors. But against hordes of T3, you might be better off with more bodies with the standard Intercessors.
Now, we’re also leaving out any buffs, stratagems or other “outside” influences. It really depends on how you want to build your army with these units in mind. It also depends on if you want to run a specific Chapter because that can have HUGE impact on their effectiveness. And we haven’t even tossed in Assault Intercessors in this fight…
“Hey, we’re Intercessors, too!”
What do you think? There are a lot of other factors to consider – but on paper which Intercessors do you prefer? Let us know in the comments!