I'm also still running a proxy until I can get an actual model. How easy is the rider to modify...swapping heads or torso, that sort of thing?
I think you might be disappointed if you're a huge converter. I don't find he is very swappable friendly. The head, arms, legs are all really hard to swap. They are however very well done and unique.
I'm still debating buying one or not. While the model is amazing i'm not sold on the rules.
How fragile have you found him to be with a relic or physic buff?
How pose-able is the model?
He's fragile. A lot of people ridiculed those that made the comment he's too fragile at 12 wounds, but it is definitely the case. The only time your opponent is not going to start by targeting him is if they don't have a clue what he does, or what his Warlord trait may be (I'm Black Legion and not taking half damage trait.... I'd rather have 6 Daemon Engines get a 2" bonus and charge one in after advancing personally).
I try to Psychically buff him.. it's really hard though. He takes off and once you try to advance to keep up to him, you are (very likely) putting your Sorc /MoP in an area of the table you really don't want him.
The Lord Disco is good though, but not quite as good as I hoped. He's okay against low brow infantry, and okay against Vehicles but not great.
I'm finding his detachment relic is a bit of a red herring.... in 8th your opponent is not going to move into base you in assault if they have a clue what they're doing. You will be based and unable to try to get more 'stuff' within his relic's sweet zone of 1".
It looks good on paper but doesn't work in practice... just my opinion, but I stopped taking it. I prefer relics that... don't rely on opponent's not knowing what they do.
What’s people’s opinion on the maw weapon? Stick with injector or swap for magma cutter?
Injector by a mile. Above all else... the Injector is the best thing you have going against Knights, etc. on the charge.
Further to load out... I think the Baleflamer is what I'm going with on one of these units. I am building the other with the cheaper option.
Right now my lists feature 2 of them. I've had bizarre games with them though.
This is a bit off topic so I'll keep it brief: the thing I'm finding is most of the 'effective' Chaos Detachments differ from the loyalist ones in Vigilus in a substantial way. They need a strong, wholesale commitment to work. The Possessed definitely need this, the Raptors are better with a full buy in, even this Daemon Engine detachment needs a larger buy in for success.
I do think the Venomcrawler still needs a point reduction. In my games the Defiler is a lot more valuable (larger foot print too for buffs/psyker stuff).
People have asked me at the store why I use the Venomcrawler considering my view/experiences with them... simply put the model is extremely cool and the Defiler still reminds me of a washing machine on crab legs.