Warhammer 40K: Primaris Aggressors Review
on Aug 9, 2017
What do you get when you combine a Space Marine Terminator with a Centurion? Probably something that looks like one of the new Primaris Aggressors, an Elite troop choice for the Space Marine army list. These bulky, clumsy-looking dudes practically visualize the word "lumbering", with jumbo Frank Miller-sized hands and the new Gravis armor that looks like it was made with immobility in mind. Strapped on to each of those giant mitts is a standard Boltstorm gauntlet or an optional Firestorm variant, so you get your choice of bullets or fire. If you go the fire route, you lose the shoulder-mounted grenade launchers but you gain 2D6 of those crazy 8th edition no-template auto hits- twice if you didn't move before lighting 'em up. But if you do move, these guys have Relentless Advance and take no penalty for firing Assault class weapons after and advance.
So the reason they are called Aggressors is pretty clear from the above. They are a quite brutal forward-pressing element, but they can also serve as a tremendous defensive asset to protect more vulnerable units. Nobody wants to charge into 2D6 automatic hits. They are tough, dangerous and in some ways easy to underestimate. You can field them in a set of three or six, with the option to divide the unit into two detachments.
Definitely not the hands of a surgeon.
The power of these guys is undeniable, but I am somewhat indifferent toward them. I don't really care for the models, and although I like the flamethrowing choice, I found the Boltstorm gauntlet to be a boring weapon despite its dakka. It's definitely tactically valid (a unit of six can dole out a stunning 72 BS 3 shots if they stand still), but I would have rather have seen something like a Melta, Grav, or laser option for them. I have so many bolt weapons; I picked the Flamestorms almost solely for variety. Salamander players will find that pick a no-brainer as well.
I'm also not too crazy about the kit. After being so impressed that I could build two different units with one kit of Reivers, I was disappointed that the Aggressor set is one three man unit. I really would have liked to have one set of each weapon type, and I'm not sure I like these guys enough to buy another box. The build is pretty simple, but you've got to do that hateful, deplorable thing where you have to glue teeny tiny cable ends together. Like, six times for each model with the flame weapons. They aren't very customizable or interesting, and overall I found my hobby time with them to be pretty dull.
Regardless of my personal tastes and issues, this is still a solid addition to the Primaris range and I would expect to see Aggressors in many top builds. The potential for these brutes fielded alongside Rouboute Guilliman, for example is extreme. Imagine rerolling those 72 BS 3 shots- yikes!