The Krios was a main battle tank used by the Mechanicum of Mars during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy. The Krios was developed on Mars during the earliest days of the Mechanicum and used numerous arcane integrated systems that are well outside the purview of most Standard Template Construct (STC) construction facilities to build or maintain. Due to the difficulty to build and maintain these vehicles, the Krios and its variants have never seen service outside the Taghmata and Skitarius. The Krios Battle Tank is comparable in function and tactical role to the Predator main battle tank that is used by other Imperial forces. Although it lacks a more flexible traversable turret for its main weapon, the Krios makes up for this disadvantage with its greater speed and maneuverability.
In marked contrast to more conventional armoured vehicles, the Krios Pattern tank does not use layers of physical armour plating for protection and instead relies on a series of interlocking defensive energy fields, lending it a deceptively skeletal appearance. The Krios and its variants also make use of a galvanic traction drive that allows the vehicle to traverse dangerous terrain with relative ease. The most important feature of the Krios Pattern Battle Tank is its extremely potent on-board fusion reactor. This powerful reactor not only powers the vehicle's protective energy fields but its powerful directed energy weapon systems as well.
The Krios Battle Tank is armed with a hull-mounted, forwards-firing Lightning Cannon. The Lightning Cannon uses the Krios' powerful on-board reactor's vast capacity to create a laser-guided electromagnetic beam. The weapon is capable of vaporising flesh and rupturing heavy armour with sustained blasts. While the Lightning Cannon has a relatively short range, its advantage over conventional ballistic weapons is that its reactor-fed firepower has the capacity to fire at full effect for extended periods, far eclipsing the amount of solid shells that other vehicles would ever be able to carry. The Krios Battle Tank can be outfitted with several upgrades and attachments, including Extra Armour Plating, Smoke Launchers, an Anbaric Claw, and up to two Volkite Sentinels.
The following are all known formations used by the Krios Battle Tank:
- Krios Battle Tank Squadron - The standard battle formation for the Krios and its variants, this formation consists of up to three Krios Battle Tanks or Krios Venator Tank Destroyers.
The Krios Battle Tank has been in service to the Mechanicum for many centuries, and unsurprisingly its has many variants that have come and gone over the years, with the following the most common:
- Krios Venator - The Krios Venator is the most common variant of the standard Krios Battle Tank and replaces the Krios' standard Lightning Cannon with a Pulsar-fusil. A relic of the Dark Age of Technology, the Pulsar-fusil is a multi-chambered particle beam cannon designed to fire volleys of destructive energy bolts that detonate explosively upon impact. The Krios Venator is a purpose-designed tank destroyer.
Adeptus Mechanicus Technical Specifications
The technical specifications of the Krios Battle Tank are a closely-guarded secret of the Martian Priesthood, and the Adeptus Mechanicus has thus not made its specifications public.
- The Horus Heresy - Book Three: Extermination (Imperial Armour), pp. 224, 226, 228
- Forge World - Krios Battle Tank