The Leman Russ Conqueror is a variant of the Imperial Guard's primary main battle tank, the Leman Russ. The Leman Russ is named after the Primarch of the Space Wolves Space Marines Chapter, Leman Russ, and is one of the most common armoured vehicles used by the Imperium of Man.
The Leman Russ Conqueror variant differs from the standard pattern Leman Russ in that its main weapon is a Conqueror Cannon, as opposed to the Battle Cannon. The Leman Russ tank has many variants, and the Conqueror is one of the most uncommon, as the Standard Template Construct (STC) designs used in its construction were only recently rediscovered by the Adeptus Mechanicus.
Although the Leman Russ Conqueror is relatively new to the Imperium's arsenal, it has already proven itself as a capable line-breaker tank, used to penetrate and surround the formations of enemy armour.
The Standard Template Construct designs for the Leman Russ Conqueror were rediscovered on the Forge World of Gryphonne IV sometime during the 38th Millennium. When the designs were originally found many within the ranks of the Adeptus Mechanicus feared that the Conqueror Cannon's smaller size would result in a loss of firepower and poor battlefield performance when compared to the standard Leman Russ' Battle Cannon, but these fears were laid to rest during the weapon's field testing.
The weapon was shown to have greatly reduced recoil due to the gun's torsion bar counter-balance mechanisms, and this provided the new tank design greater accuracy when firing on the move. The weapon's smaller size also gave the vehicle greater mobility, and allowed its loaders to keep up a high rate of fire. The weapon's use of smaller shells allowed the Conqueror to carry more ammunition and thus made it less reliant on re-supply during operations. The space saved in the turret also allowed for the use of a co-axial Storm Bolter.
The Conqueror is one of only two Leman Russ variants that make use of a co-axial weapon, the other being the Leman Russ Vanquisher. The turret also has additional armour plating on the forward side, improved air-intake valves and vents, and a rear hatch that can be used to quickly re-arm the tank and also to dispose of spent shell casings without a crew member having to leave its armoured interior.
The entire first production run of Leman Russ Conqueror tanks was issued to the Skitarii legions of Gryphonne IV, and their first action was to partake in the Castra Campaign. During the campaign the Adeptus Mechanicus Skitarii and the Legio Gryphonicus Titan Legion were tasked with the destruction of enemy forces that were held up inside of Hive Castra Septus. The Conqueror-equipped Skitarii legions were able to keep up with the advance of the Titans as they attempted to encircle the hive city and trap the enemy combatants within.
Enemy forces were unable to make it past the combined force of the Titans and the Conqueror tanks and after the Titans created breaks in the defender's defensive line the Conquerors rushed into their midst, completely annihilating the Traitors. After this success, the Leman Russ Conqueror was put into full production and was slowly but steadily exported to Imperial Guard armoured regiments around the galaxy.
Sometime during the 39th Millennium the Adeptus Mechanicus Munition-Adepts of Gryphonne IV tried to create a new type of shell for the Conqueror Cannon. This shell, known as the Auger Shell, was supposed to increase the tank's firepower, but was considered a complete failure during testing, and the production of the Auger Shell is no longer permitted for the design.
In the 41st Millennium the Leman Russ Conqueror is an uncommon sight in most Imperial Guard regiments as the STC designs used in its construction are found only on the Forge World of Gryphonne IV.
The original designs that were recovered on Gryphonne IV now reside on Mars waiting to be processed for distribution across the Mechanicus' manufactorum network and at present there are several other Forge Worlds lobbying to gain access to them.
The Leman Russ Conqueror is well-liked by its crews due to its speed, mobility, and high rate of fire, and it has unofficially became known as a "breakthrough" tank because of its common tactical deployment by Guard commanders to exploit gaps in the lines of enemy armour.
The Leman Russ Conqueror's main weapon, the Conqueror Cannon, is a smaller and less powerful version of the Battle Cannon used on the baseline Leman Russ, but the reduced size and firepower allow the tank to move while firing and maintain a higher rate of fire. The Conqueror is also one of only two Leman Russ tank variants that have a co-axial weapon mounted on the tank's turret, the other being the Leman Russ Vanquisher.
The Conqueror, like all Leman Russ variants, can be equipped with two sponson mounts, one on each side. The most common configuration for the sponson-mount is 2 Heavy Bolters or 2 Heavy Flamers. Leman Russ tanks that are a part of an unusually well-equipped armoured regiment sometimes have 2 Multi-Meltas or 2 Plasma Cannons as their sponson weapons.
The tank can also be equipped with camouflage netting, extra armour plating, a Hunter-Killer Missile Launcher, improved communications equipment, a mine sweeper, a pintle-mounted Heavy Stubber or Storm Bolter, track guards, rough terrain modifications, a dozer blade, and smoke launchers. All Leman Russ Conqueror tanks are equipped with searchlights mounted on top of the turret which are used to illuminate enemies and are also used for nighttime communications in case of a Vox failure.
Notable Users of the Leman Russ Conqueror
- Imperial Guard - The Leman Russ Conqueror is used as a "breakthrough" tank by the Imperial Guard, and is used by many Imperial armoured regiments and companies that receive their vehicles from Gryphonne IV.
- Planetary Defence Forces - The Leman Russ Conqueror is used by several Planetary Defence Forces stationed on Imperial worlds near Gryphonne IV.
- The Lost and the Damned - The Lost and the Damned is the name collectively given to the multitude of beings that have turned to Chaos over the millennia, the vast majority of whom are the ordinary mortals who fight for Chaos. They are not a single coherent force, but rather a diverse and infinite collection of war-bands and hosts under the leadership of Chaos Champions. These forces take their weapons and vehicles with them, and as many of them were former members of the Imperial Guard or Planetary Defence Forces, they make use of an unknown number of Leman Russ Conqueror tanks.
- 74th Cadian Armoured Regiment - Fought during the defence of Hamman's World against the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Kraken
- 27th Konig Armoured Regiment - Part of the Caleb Reclamation Forces
- 8th Palladius Armoured Regiment - Fought during the Atria Wilderness Campaign
- 66th Arcadian Armoured Regiment - Part of the Toal III Invasion Force
- 11th Mortant Armoured Regiment - Fought on the world of Hellion V
- Armageddon Steel Legion - Fought during the Third War for Armageddon
- 3rd Tallarn Armoured Regiment - Fought in the defence of Balle Alpha, and during the Taros Campaign
- 12th Tallarn Armoured Regiment - Fought against the Tau during the Taros Campaign
- Vraksian Traitor Militia - The Vraksian Traitor Militia fought against Imperial forces during the Siege of Vraks
- Death Korps of Krieg - The Death Korps of Krieg fought against Traitor forces during the Siege of Vraks
- 28th Valhallan Armoured Regiment
- 21st Death Korps of Krieg Panzer Division
- 5th Blitzen Heavy Armoured Regiment
- 8th Pardus Armoured Regiment
Adeptus Mechanicus Technical Specifications
|Vehicle Name:||Leman Russ Conqueror||Main Armament:||Conqueror Cannon|
|Forge World of Origin:||Gryphonne IV||Secondary Armament:||
Co-axial Storm Bolter
|Known Patterns:||III - VI||Traverse:||360 degrees|
|Crew:||1 Commander, 1 Driver, 1 Main Gunner, 1 Loader, 2 Sponson Gunners (if sponsons are attached)||Elevation:||-8 to 20 degrees|
|Powerplant:||G4230 v12 TRM Multi-Fuel||Main Ammunition:||46 Rounds|
|Weight:||62 Tonnes||Secondary Ammunition:||1000 Rounds|
|Height:||4.42 metres||Superstructure:||180 millimetres|
|Ground Clearance:||0.45 metres||Hull:||150 millimetres|
|Max Speed On-Road:||34 kilometres per hour||Gun Mantlet:||100 millimetres|
|Max Speed Off-Road:||24 kilometres per hour||Vehicle Designation:||0427-941-2002-LR0085|
|Transport Capacity:||N/A||Firing Ports:||N/A|
|Access Points:||Top Hatch||Turret:||200 millimetres|
- Imperial Armour Volume One - Imperial Guard and Imperial Navy, pp. 53-60
- Imperial Armour Volume One - Imperial Guard (Second Edition), pp. 15, 21, 40-46, 239, 247, 250, 254, 267
- Imperial Armour Volume Three - The Taros Campaign, pg. 57
- Imperial Armour Volume Six - The Siege of Vraks - Part Two, pg. 76
- Imperial Armour Volume Seven - The Siege of Vraks - Part Three, pg. 127
- Imperial Armour Twelve - The Fall of Orpheus, pg. 203
- Imperial Armour, pp. 6-7, 38
- Gaunt's Ghosts Omnibus: The Saint (Novel) by Dan Abnett, pg. 57