The Predator Destructor is the main battle tank employed by the Space Marines of the Imperium of Man and the Traitor Legions of the Chaos Space Marines. It is a more heavily armed and armoured version of the Rhino armoured personnel carrier. The Predator Destructor is the most common variant of the Predator used by the Space Marines. All Rhino and Predator variants are based off of designs originally created during the Dark Age of Technology, using Standard Template Construct (STC) database designs. The tanks can be constructed on Forge Worlds of the Adeptus Mechanicus or in a Space Marine Chapter's own forges, and afterwards they are sent to the Chapter's Armoury until they are needed. A Space Marine Chapter will usually maintain around 20 to 30 Predators of all types at a time. The Master of the Forge is responsible for all the vehicles of a Chapter, and upon request will issue these vehicles where and to whom they are needed.
HistoryThe Predator Destructor, and the other Predator variants, first saw service during the Dark Age of Technology where they served as the main battle tank of all of Mankind's forces. The Predator variant of the Rhino was first developed when Mankind encountered a violent and warlike breed of xenos, who would later be identified as the Orks. The forces of Mankind were having great difficulty combatting the Ork's reckless attacks and headlong charges, and thus the Predator tank was developed with thick armour and powerful weapons that allowed it to resist the attacks of most Ork weapons. The original Predator designs were constructed with a small amount of troop-carrying capacity, but during the years of the Emperor's Great Crusade in the late 30th and early 31st Millennium this transport capacity was gradually replaced with more storage space for ammunition, especially if the Predator was equipped with sponson-mounted weapons. This practise eventually became the standard and all Predators are equipped with sponson-mounted weapons at present.
Notable FeaturesThe Predator tank features a special armoured chassis consisting of three different layers of protection. The inner layer provides the main defence for the vehicle and is constructed of bonded Ceramite and Adamantium alloys which provides protection that is over five times greater than conventional steel, yet is much lighter. The second, center layer is made of reinforcing Thermoplas containing a sub-dermal energy dissipation fibre mesh which protects against extremes of heat, cold, and radioactivity. The third, outer layer consists of a non-magnetic acrylic identification sheath that helps the vehicle keep hidden from enemy scanners. Like all variants of the Rhino armoured personnel carrier, the Predator is capable of crossing deep water, but is not truly amphibious.
ArmamentThe Mars Pattern Mark IVb Predator Destructor is the most common of all the Predator types in use by the Adeptus Astartes today. The Destructor Pattern is armed with a turret-mounted "Syrtis" Pattern Autocannon, featuring an automated ammunition feeder, muzzle flash suppressor, and discharge extractor. The weapon is slave-linked to a multi-spectral remote targeting surveyor and accuracy talisman that is controlled by the vehicle's commander, who is also the vehicle's gunner. During the Great Crusade, the Predator sacrificed its small troop carrying capacity in exchange for more ammunition storage, as many Predators were being equipped with sponson-mounted weapons. This practise became standard and now all Predators are equipped with sponson-mounted weapons, which are usually Heavy Bolters or Lascannons. The sponson-mounted weapons are controlled remotely by the tank commander from the turret using a multi-spectral targeting surveyor that is protected from enemy fire by an armoured cowling. The sponson-mounts are able to be equipped with a variety of weapons, with Heavy Bolters and Lascannons being the most common. All variants of the Predator can also be outfitted with a dozer blade, extra armour plating, a Hunter-Killer Missile Launcher, improved communications equipment, a Pintle-mounted Storm Bolter, a searchlight, and smoke launchers.
There are several variants of the basic Predator Destructor design in use by the Space Marines, usually equipped with different weapons and equipment. The three major variants are as follows:
- Predator Annihilator - The Predator Annihilator is a variant of the basic Predator Destructor that replaces the tank's turret-mounted Autocannon with a set of Twin-linked Lascannons. The Lascannons allow the Predator Annihilator to effectively engage enemy armoured vehicles. This variant of the Predator was developed during the 36th Millennium by the Space Wolves Space Marine Chapter to use against overwhelming enemy armoured forces during the Skarath Crusade. After nearly 200 standard years of testing, the Adeptus Mechanicus gave the Machine God's blessing for the variant, and now most Space Marine Chapters field this powerful anti-armour vehicle.
- Baal Predator - The Baal Predator is a special infantry support variant of the Predator tank. This variant of the Predator was developed by the Techmarines of the Blood Angels Chapter. This variant replaces the tank's Autocannon with Twin-linked Assault Cannons or a Flamestorm Cannon and it can also equip Heavy Flamers on its sponson-mounts. The Standard Template Construct (STC) designs for the Baal Pattern Predator have been held by the Blood Angels since the early years of the Great Crusade and this has caused much friction between the Sons of Sanguinius and the Adeptus Mechanicus. Due to this design never being truly sanctified by the Mechanicum, it is mostly used only by the Blood Angels and their Successor Chapters.
- Deimos Predator - The Deimos Pattern Predator, better known as the Deimos Predator, is an ancient pattern of the Predator that was first used by the Space Marine Legions during the Great Crusade. The Deimos Predator is Artificer-crafted by the finest machine-wrights of the Adeptus Mechanicus on the Machanicum's homeworld of Mars. This pattern of the Predator also has its own variant, known as the Deimos Predator Executioner, which exchanges the Deimos Predator's Autocannon or Twin-linked Lascannons with either a Plasma Destroyer or a Heavy Conversion Beamer.
Notable Users of the Predator Destructor
- Adeptus Astartes - The Predator Destructor is the main battle tank of the Space Marines, and is also one of the most common vehicles in use with their Chapters.
- Chaos Space Marines and Renegades - Space Marine Chapters that have fallen to Chaos or have otherwise left the Imperium make use of Predator Destructors in much the same way as their Loyalist counterparts.
- Storm Warriors - The Storm Warriors Space Marine Chapter used Predator Destructors during the defence of Cadia during the 13th Black Crusade.
- Raven Guard - The Raven Guard Space Marine Chapter used Predator Destructors during the Imperial raid on the Ork held world of Kastorel-Novem.
- Space Wolves - The Space Wolves Space Marine Chapter used Predator Destructors during the defence of the Imperial Mining World of Betalis III against the Eldar of Craftworld Mymeara.
- Blood Ravens - The Blood Ravens Space Marine Chapter used Predator Destructors during the Dark Crusade, the Kaurava Conflict, and the First, Second, and Third Aurelian Crusades.
- Black Templars
- Omega Marines
- Deathstrike Chapter
Notable Deployments of the Predator Destructor
- The Taros Campaign - The Raptors and Avenging Sons Space Marines Chapters used Predator Destructors during the Taros Campaign against the Tau.
- The Siege of Vraks - During the 17-year-long Siege of Vraks, the Predator Destructor was deployed by the Red Scorpions, Steel Brethren, Dark Angels, and Red Hunters Space Marine Chapters. The tank was also used by several Chaos Space Marine warbands.
- The Badab War - During the Badab War, the Fire Angels, Novamarines, Salamanders, Minotaurs, and Sons of Medusa Space Marine Chapters used Predator Destructors. The Lamenters, Executioners, and Astral Claws Renegade Space Marine Chapters also made use of the Predator Destructor.
The Predator Destructor tank has been the iron fist of the Traitor Legions since the days of the Horus Heresy, and it is the most common Predator variant used by the Chaos Space Marines. The Forces of Chaos have used Predator tanks in every conceivable theatre of war, from the civil wars that broke out between the Traitor Legions following the attempted cloning of Horus to the Black Crusades of Abaddon the Despoiler. The Predator is used by all of the Traitor Legions, and all Renegade Space Marine Chapters that have turned against the Imperium. There are rumours of Predator Tanks within the arsenals of the Forces of Chaos that are controlled by the daemonic entities of the Warp itself, and thus lack a crew. These tanks are marked with the fell iconography of the Chaos Gods, and feature special weapons such as toxic sprayers and Sonic Weapons. The Predator Destructor is more common amongst the ancient Traitor Legions than it is in the newer Renegade Chaos Space Marine forces that have defected from the Imperium in later times. There are many Predators being produced everyday within the Eye of Terror on Chaos War Worlds and corrupted Dark Mechanicus Forge Worlds. Many smaller Chaos Space Marine warbands will scour battlefields in order to find and recover battlefield wreckage, and thus are able to add to the number of Predators and other vehicles they have at their service. The Forces of Chaos deeply enjoy looting and corrupting Imperial vehicles, and since Predators are easy to repair, they are favoured prizes. The Predators under the control of Chaos Space Marine warbands are usually armed with either a Predator Cannon or a set of twin-linked Lascannons. They can also be armed with Pintle-mounted twin-linked Bolters (Combi-Bolter) or other Combi-Weapons, and sponson-mounted Heavy Bolters or Lascannons. Predators in use by Chaos and Renegade warbands that have recently betrayed the Imperium, or recently captured Imperial Predators, may be armed instead with a Storm Bolter or even a Hunter-Killer Missile Launcher. They can also be armed with a Havoc Missile Launcher, an ancient weapon system that has long fallen out of use in the Imperium. Chaos Predators can also be equipped with destroyer blades, Dirge Casters, dozer blades, extra armour plating, Chaos Icons or Marks, or Warpflame Gargoyles.
Adeptus Mechanicus Technical Specifications
|Vehicle Name:||Predator Destructor||Main Armament:||Turret-mounted Autocannon|
|Forge World of Origin:||Mars||Secondary Armament:||Sponson-mounted Heavy Bolters|
|Known Patterns:||I - XII||Traverse:||360 degrees|
|Crew:||1 Driver, 1 Gunner||Elevation:||-15 to 28 degrees|
|Powerplant:||Quad Mark II Adaptable Thermic Combustor Reactor||Main Ammunition:||120 Rounds|
|Weight:||44 Tonnes||Secondary Ammunition:||1100 Rounds|
|Width:||6.0 metres with sponsons|
|Height:||4.4 metres||Superstructure:||65 millimetres|
|Ground Clearance:||0.44 metres||Hull:||55 millimetres|
|Max Speed On-Road:||68 kilometres per hour||Gun Mantlet:||65 millimetres|
|Max Speed Off-Road:||50 kilometres per hour||Vehicle Designation:||0120-766-0723-RH 812/819|
|Transport Capacity:||N/A||Firing Ports:||N/A|
- White Dwarf 271 (UK)
- Insignium Astartes, pg.48
- Codex: Ultramarines, pg. 69
- Codex: Blood Angels (3rd Edition), pg. 9
- Codex: Blood Angels (4th Edition), pg. 11
- Codex Blood Angels (5th Edition), pp. 35-36
- Codex: Black Templars (4th Edition), pp. 40-41
- Codex: Dark Angels (4th Edition), pg. 86
- Codex: Dark Angels (6th Edition), pp. 39, 78, 103
- Codex: Space Wolves (5th Edition), pg. 41
- Codex: Space Marines (3rd Edition), pg. 14
- Codex: Space Marines (4th Edition), pp. 38-39
- Codex: Space Marines (5th Edition), pg. 78
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (3rd Edition, 1st Codex), pg. 18
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (3rd Edition, 2nd Codex), pg. 34
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (4th Edition), pp. 42, 96
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (6th Edition), pp. 54, 99
- Imperial Armour Volume Two - Space Marines and Forces of the Inquisition, pp. 26-36
- Imperial Armour Volume Three - The Taros Campaign, pp. 23, 54, 122, 131
- Imperial Armour Volume Five - The Siege of Vraks - Part One, pp. 64,
- Imperial Armour Volume Six - The Siege of Vraks - Part Two, pp. 57, 86, 128, 173-175
- Imperial Armour Volume Seven - The Siege of Vraks - Part Three, pp. 33, 38, 58
- Imperial Armour Volume Eight - The Raid on Kastorel-Novem, pp. 59, 66, 201
- Imperial Armour Volume Nine - The Badab War - Part One, p. 96, 114, 122
- Imperial Armour Volume Ten - The Badab War - Part Two, pp. 26-27, 93, 103, 158-163
- Imperial Armour Volume Eleven - The Doom of Mymeara, pg. 54