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Contemptor Pattern Dreadnought

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Space Wolves Contemptor Dreadnought Har Skrinn[8a]

The Contemptor Pattern Dreadnought is a Space Marine Dreadnought developed prior to the Horus Heresy. The Contemptor is larger and more powerful than standard Dreadnought patterns, featuring systems similar to those used by the automatons of the Adeptus Mechanicus Legio Cybernetica branch, including Atomantic Shielding field generator technology that would be implemented into the Storm Shields of Space Marine Terminators.[1]


The Contemptor comes equipped with a twin-linked Heavy Bolter, a Dreadnought Close Combat Weapon with inbuilt Storm Bolter, and Smoke launchers. The Contemptor can replace its standard equipment with a variety of weaponry, including: a Rotor Cannon, Multi-melta, twin-linked Heavy Flamers, twin-linked Autocannons, Plasma Cannon, heavy Conversion Beamer, or twin-linked Lascannons. The Contemptor can also replace its inbuilt twin-linked Bolter with a heavy flamer. The Contemptor can also be upgraded with Extra armour, Missile Launcher, and a Searchlight.[2]

Once the standard pattern of Dreadnought in the Great Crusade-era, the ability to create new Contemptors is now beyond the Adeptus Mechanicus or perhaps a closely guarded secret by certain Tech-Priest factions. At the time of the Horus Heresy it was a recent design, equipped with advanced energy generators that allowed for enhanced speed and strength as well as defensive energy field systems. These advantages came with a price however, for it requires a higher degree of maintaneance and a catastrophic meltdown may occur if its arc reactor is breached.[36] Some believe that the design may share systems with the dreaded, near-mythical battle-automata of the Legio Cybernetica. If this is the case, it may explain why so few Contemptors remain in service as of M41. Those few that still remain in service are relics of the Great Crusade, Horus Heresy, and The Scouring.[4a] In the 41st Millennium, the Castaferrum Pattern Dreadnought has become the most common.[3]

Technical Information[4b]

Vehicle Name: Contemptor Pattern Dreadnought Main Armament: Twin-linked Heavy Bolters, Lascannons, Volkite Culverins, or Heavy Flamers, or single Multi-Melta, Plasma Cannon, Conversion Beamer, Rotor Cannon
Forge World of Origin: Mars Secondary Armament: Dreadnought Close Combat Weapon, Storm Bolter or Heavy Flamer
Known Patterns: I-XXVI Traverse: 360°
Crew: Interred Space Marine Elevation: From -90° to +90°
Powerplant: Atomantic arc reactor Main Ammunition: Variable
Weight: 14.5 tonnes Secondary Ammunition: Variable
Length: 2.1m
Width: 3.1m Armour
Height: 4.5m
Ground Clearance: N/A Superstructure: 75mm
Fording Depth: Hull: 75mm
Max Speed - on road 12kph Gun Mantlet N/A
Max Speed - off road: 7kph Vehicle Designation: 8681-756-127-DR 081
Transport Capacity: N/A Firing Ports: N/A
Access Points: N/A Turret: N/A


Variants used by multiple Legions

Contemptor-Cortus Class Dreadnought

A Contemptor-Cortus Class Dreadnought with a heavy Conversion Beamer[5]

First created during the Ullanor Crusade, the Contemptor-Cortus was a variant of the highly successful ‘Prime’ Contemptor pattern. Utilizing many base components, the most sophisticated systems were replaced with robust - if less potent - systems which could be more readily fabricated in the field by the Legiones Astartes. The result was a war machine with its own unique strengths and combat characteristics, but also with a not-undeserved reputation for instability. However, as the Horus Heresy broke out, this more easily produced variant of Contemptor Dreadnought was returned to widespread service.[5]

Contemptor-Mortis Class Dreadnought

World Eaters Contemptor-Mortis Pattern Dreadnought Juljak Nul[3]

Instead of standard twin-linked heavy bolters, this class is armed with two weapons of the same type - Multi-Meltas, twin-linked Autocannons, Kheres pattern Assault Cannons, or twin-linked Lascannons.[4b]

Variants used by specific Legions

Contemptor-Incaendius Class Dreadnought

Contemptor-Incaendius Dreadnought[9]

The Contemptor-Incaendius Class Dreadnought was a variant of Contemptor used by the Blood Angels Legion. Classified as a "fast attack" Dreadnought, the chassis was equipped with a Incaendius Booster Pack which allowed for the Dreadnought to fall from low orbit or make small jumps despite its bulk. This class of Dreadnought was only built within Mechanicum enclaves located on Baal's first moon as per an agreement between the Blood Angels homeworld and the Forge World of Anvillus. Armed with twin Talons of Perdition with built-in Heavy Flamers, the Incaendius served as a shock assault unit of unparalleled ferocity.[9]

Osiron Class Dreadnought

Osiron Pattern Dreadnought[10]

The Osiron Class Dreadnought was a type of Contemptor used by the Thousand Sons. These dreadnoughts were created by Magnus himself, and consisted of a mortally wounded psyker Space Marine laced with a psychometric barrier for his brain. This allowed the Dreadnought to perform psychic abilities that was far safer to the user and its allies. As such, these Dreadnoughts were equipped with Force Weapons.[8b]

Custodes Variants

Contemptor-Achillus Class Dreadnought

A Contemptor-Achillus Class Dreadnought[7]

The Contemptor Achilus Dreadnought is a model used by the Custodian Guard.[7]

In those isolated cases where the body has been all but irrevocably destroyed but the Custodian’s mind remains intact and their will to survive undimmed, internment within the cold and unyielding body of a Dreadnought is the next step. To this purpose, the few Dreadnoughts of the Legio Custodes are as singularly advanced as their other wargear, outfitted with weapons and systems artificer-made by the servants of the Imperial Court. At the time of the outbreak of the Horus Heresy, the most widely employed was the Contemptor-Achillus, a general battle unit which combined phenomenal strength and speed with the echoes of the interned Custodes’ own unmatched martial skill.[7]

The primary weapon of the Contemptor-Achillus was the mighty Dreadspear, a weapon modeled closely on the Custodes Guardian Spear but larger and equipped with a Corve Las-Pulser. It was also equipped with two wrist-mounted storm bolters, incinerators or Adrathic destructors.[7]

Contemptor-Galatus Class Dreadnought

A Contemptor-Galatus Class Dreadnought[6]

Similar in aspect to the Contemptor Dreadnoughts of the Legiones Astartes, the Contemptor-Galatus is a markedly superior war machine. The unrivalled skills of the warrior entombed within its sarcophagus notwithstanding, the Contemptor-Galatus is stronger, faster and better armoured.[Needs Citation]

Designed to provide an anchor for a Legio Custodes battleline, the Contemptor-Galatus is armed in similar fashion to the Custodes themselves – wielding a huge Galatus Warblade with its inbuilt twin-linked infernus incinerator, and equipped with a vastly enlarged version of the Custodes Praesidium shield. Already able to withstand heavy assaults with its armour and refractor field, the Praesidium shield allows the Contemptor-Galatus stand nigh on impregnable, enduring the enemy onslaught and reaping a murderous toll with its immense power blade.[6]

Notable Contemptor Pattern Dreadnoughts


See also


Legiones Astartes Forces of the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy
Command PrimarchLegion MasterPraetorCenturionSpace Marine Command SquadChief ApothecaryForgemasterChief LibrarianHeraldDecurion
Elite Troops Veteran SquadTerminator SquadDestroyer SquadMoritatChampion ConsulHonour GuardNullificator
Troops Tactical SquadAssault SquadBreacher Siege SquadSeeker SquadOutrider SquadSky Seeker SquadHussar SquadTactical Support SquadReconnaissance SquadHeavy Support SquadSky Hunter SquadDespoiler SquadNewbloods
Specialists Techmarine (MortificatorForge Lord)Apothecary (Primus Medicae) • ChaplainLibrarian (Esoterist)Master of SignalsConsul (PraevianDelegatusWarmongerArmistosOpsequiariNullificator)VigilatorSiege BreakerPathfinder
Dreadnoughts ContemptorDeredeoCastaferrumVenerableMortisLeviathan
Armored Vehicles Rhino (Advancer) • Predator (ExecutionerInfernus) • Land Raider (PhobosProteusAchilles) • SabreKratosTermite
Heavy Vehicles SpartanKratosSicaran (VenatorPunisherArcusOmega) • Malcador (AnnihilatorDefenderInfernus) • CerberusTyphon
Super-Heavy Vehicles Fellblade (Glaive) • FalchionShadowswordStormbladeMastodonCapitol ImperialisLeviathan
Fast Attack Vehicles JetbikeBike (Attack Bike) • Land SpeederJavelin
Artillery BasiliskMedusaWhirlwind (ScorpiusHyperios) • Vindicator (Laser Destroyer) • Arquitor (GravitonSpiculaMorbus) • RapierHeavy Quad LauncherTarantula
Aircraft Drop Pod (Deathstorm) • Kharybdis Assault ClawDreadclawStormbirdThunderhawk (Thunderhawk Transporter) • Storm Eagle (Fire Raptor) • StormstrikePrimaris Lightning Strike FighterXiphon InterceptorCaestus Assault RamOrgus FlyerApisLotusWrathLightning CrowStormhawkCorsairDeathbirdSwordstrikeCastellanPythosHarbingerHawkwing

I - Deathwing (Companions) • Dreadwing (InteremptorsNaufragia) • Firewing (Enigmatii) • Ironwing (Forge-wrightsExcindio Class Robot) • RavenwingStormwingPaladinKnights CenobiumIII - KakophoniPalatine BladesPhoenix GuardSun KillersIV - Iron CircleIron HavocStor-BezashkTyranthikosTyrant Siege TerminatorDodakathikThunderstrikeThunderburstWarsmithCastellan RhinoV - KeshigEbon KeshigGolden KeshigFalcon's ClawsKaraoghlanlarKyzaganSagyar MazanStormseerVI - Blood ClawsDeathswornFenrisian WolfGrey SlayerGrey StalkerBlood ClawBlack CullRune PriestWolf GuardWolf PriestHrimthursarEldthursarHunterVII - CastellanHuscarlsPhalanx WarderTemplar BrethrenVIII - AtramentarNight RaptorTerror SquadContekarReaverIX - Angel's TearsBurning EyesHigh HostContemptor-IncaendiusCrimson PaladinsDawnbreakerSanguinary GuardX - GorgonIron FatherMedusan ImmortalMorlocksXII - DevourerRampagerCaedereRed ButchersTriariiBloodiedRed HandXIII - EvocatiFulmentarusLocutarusInvictariiPraetorianNemesis DestroyersXIV - DeathshroudGrave WardensMortus PoisonersPlague MarinesXV - Ammitara OccultCastellax-AcheaHidden OnesKhenetai OccultOsironScarab OccultNumerologistsXVI - JustaerinLuperciReaverXVII - Anakatis KulAshen CircleDark ApostleDiabolistGal VorbakMhara GalVakrah JalProcuratorXVIII - Forge WardenFiredrakesPyre GuardPyroclastSanctifierXIX - Dark FuryDarkwingMor DeythanRaptorShadow WardensDeliverersWhispercutterXX - LernaeanHeadhunterOperativeSaboteur

Support Forces Imperial Army (Imperialis MilitiaSolar AuxiliaImperial Armada) • Mechanicum (Collegia TitanicaTaghmata OmnissiahSkitarii) • Sisters of SilenceCustodian Guard