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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I play more for fun and am pretty new to the game but I have trouble seeing any real big strengths or great deadly units in the codex to build a list around. Everything seems just so - so. What do these guys do well?

We don't seem to have any super deadly HQ units like most armies. I cant see what the use for tactical squads is, what do you tourny players use these guys for? Obviously not CC but to be frank they don't kill much when they shoot either...

Ive used scouts with snipers thinking they were a cheaper possibly more effective way to fill my troop slots and honestly that was nothing but a disappointment, killing like 1 guy a turn.

My terminators just get peppered creeping around the table and before you know it they've failed a save or two and are toast, they seem to be the only unit that really kills much of anything for me though I must say.

Why would you even take any of these units a simple rush of ork boyz can counter all of them for half or even less the points.

Are there any good units in the codex? Ive tied one game so far lost about 14 badly.

I just dont see what any of my units can do against ork hordes or a DP and Berserkers/1k sons with obliterators... My main opponents.
 

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bikes, TH/SS terminators, combat tactics, librarian's powers are all really very good in the vanilla codex when comparing them with BA and SW. What you have to try to do is avoid spending unnecessary points and optimize your list as much as possible. As crimson shadow said, post your list and we'll be able to help you in a more specific manner

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Vulcan the character himself is a great strength of the codex as he makes meltas and flamethrowers even better. Also the assualt terminators with SS/TH are much cheaper then the Space Wolves alternatives, and are 5 points cheaper each then the blood angels. Also having the orbital bombardment from the chapter masters is super powerful. Troop wise the vanillla marines are less powerful.
 

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The vanilla dex can be tons of fun! Check this theorycraft list out:

HQ
Master of the Forge
Captain w/Bike, Combi-Plas and Storm Shield
Command Squad /w Bikes, Combi-Whatever and Storm Shields

TROOPS
5 Marine Bikers w/ Attack Bike
5 Marine Bikers w/ Attack Bike

ELITES
Dreadnought
Dreadnought
Dreadnought

HEAVY SUPPORT
Ironclad Dreadnought
Ironclad Dreadnought
Ironclad Dreadnought

FAST ATTACK
Land Speeder Squadron
Land Speeder Squadron

Look at all that ARMOR!!!! The only infantry models have T5, FNP and a 3++. Super cheese, or super FUN?

You be the judge.
 

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Captain with Relic blade, Arty armour, stormshield and Digi weapons.

Thats a 2+/3++ save.
3 str6 no save attacks with 1 re-roll to wound at WS6.

MCs/heavy Infantry beware.
 

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I play more for fun and am pretty new to the game but I have trouble seeing any real big strengths or great deadly units in the codex to build a list around. Everything seems just so - so. What do these guys do well?

We don't seem to have any super deadly HQ units like most armies. I cant see what the use for tactical squads is, what do you tourny players use these guys for? Obviously not CC but to be frank they don't kill much when they shoot either...

Ive used scouts with snipers thinking they were a cheaper possibly more effective way to fill my troop slots and honestly that was nothing but a disappointment, killing like 1 guy a turn.

My terminators just get peppered creeping around the table and before you know it they've failed a save or two and are toast, they seem to be the only unit that really kills much of anything for me though I must say.

Why would you even take any of these units a simple rush of ork boyz can counter all of them for half or even less the points.

Are there any good units in the codex? Ive tied one game so far lost about 14 badly.

I just dont see what any of my units can do against ork hordes or a DP and Berserkers/1k sons with obliterators... My main opponents.
You are right that vanilla marines seem to be not very good. They're expensive (compare them like-for-like to the IG list!) and inflexible. I am still figuring out ways to get around that inflexibility. So far I have learned

1)
Bikes are good, especially when counted as troops choices because your Captain is on one. (Pure theorycraft; I have none.)
2) Drop-pods look handy. (Again, I have none.)
3) Rifleman dreads look excellent. (Yup, I have no riflemen :scratchhead:)
4) Land Raiders are expensive, but good. AV14 all round, assault ramps, and hefty guns makes them relevant in any larger list.
5) Sternguard are really good, especially with Pedro. The thing about these guys is the tremendous discount they get on upgrades, and their really great flexibility.
6) Shrike and the Khan are very good with the right army. They both have exceptional special powers, but you must exploit them as hard as possible. For example, with the Khan you can have an outflanking Crusader Land Raider filled with angry termies.
7) Command squad can be configured in interesting ways, for example with 4xPlasma Gun.
8) MotF with CB is about the best in the list for trading shots with heavy armour at range.
9) It pays to read the list really closely. For example every member of an assault squad can have MB. Or take Chaplain Cassius. On the surface he looks like he's just a chaplain with a fancy gun. However, he gets FNP, a master-crafted combi-weapon firing hellfire shells, and he's Toughness 6. Taken together that probably is worth the extra 25pts you pay for him.
10) Sometimes the thing that might look cheapest, isn't really. For example, it seems expensive to buy a Razorback with TLLC when you could have 2xLC at the same cost. However, the former is the cheapest possible way all told to get an LC onto the field.
11) MM/HF Land Speeders are nearly always relevant, but break easily.
12) The cheapness of Scouts as a troops choice is an enabler for more interesting forces. For 150pts you fulfil your FOC troops requirement: that lets you experiment with all kinds of other stuff.
13) Librarians are really good. Psychic hoods and force weapons!
14) Others will have said it, but TH/SS termies are incredible against the right enemy, especially if they can run and assault, or outflank, due to Shrike or the Khan.
15) VSM are not very good at long range, nor are they incredible in assaults. (They're okay in assaults, but many other things are stronger.) Their armour is fairly weak, and they have little artillery. Finding ways to get them to their ideal range is challenging. Rhinos are better than they look, for that reason. Drop-pods better still.
16) Many of their ICs are flashy, but somewhat over-costed for the most common 1500pt game.

VSM is not as strong as say the IG Codex or Space Wolves, but does have more to it than appears on the surface. I think GW did a good job with the list. A lot of people take VSM as their entry into 40K, so they've made it easy to put a legal force together. That required inflexibility. Fortunately, they also put in keys to let you shake off those fetters. Biker captains being one example.
 

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Ive gotta disagree with you mate (op) the vanilla marine list is loaded with nasty stuff, TH/SS termis to start with, The Librarian is one of the best non special characters around imo.

Tactical squads are very good, but really need a transport, Land speeders and attack bikes make for awsome mobile antitank, Vulcan is a very dangerous special character but to get the benefit you need to taylor your list around him (not a problem really tho) however he dosent have the option of a command squad.

As said riflemen dreadnoughts are excelent, im currently roadtesting a trio of these (before i invest in the guns) and are tearing stuff to shreads.

Long story short, Mech up, and remember that marines do actually take a bit of finess to use, unless you use dual raiders with assault termis, in that case point and kill.
 

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it's funny I remember a time when everyone thought Space Marines had the hardest lists to defeat and that every new player immediately collected them because any of the other armies in an inexperienced had were toast compared to the ease of Space Marines, my how the times have changed.

Anyway Space Marines are the most diverse army in the game. Able to take the battle to the enemy on any front. With 4 different transport vehicles one of the largest lists of Elites and Fast Attack, a sh*tload of special characters or HQ's.

At the moment wannabepl47 it might just be your inexperience, cause trust me weidling any other army might just as disasterous, but that happens in the beginning. Give it time, learn from the pros and your mistakes and soon you'll get it, just don't give up because you're not massacring every opponent within your first month of playing.
 

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I've actually found myself relying more and more on Tactical squads. They're highly flexible, and I've taken tanks out with melta-bombs before. The free special and heavy weapons are actually brutally effective from entrenched positions so long as the dice love you haha.

Dreadnaughts are also an excellent choice for entangling the enemy. I've locked alot of units in close combat, and the plasma cannon mine fields is quite flexible. I've also found a close-combat command squad quite nasty, especially since the Apothecary provides Feel No Pain to the entire squad.

Terminators are best used in reserve as a Deep Strike unit for contesting the objectives most hard-fought for. Assault marines are similarly effective in this regard, although they can easily be deployed on the field and accomplish a similar goal.

I've come to love bike squads, although I only have three bikes, and even if they haven't lasted long (they seem to be an appealing target), they generally draw fire away and wreak a little havoc before they die. They also fall into the "quick contest" category for objective games. 24" using Turbo Boosters is nothing to laugh at, especially with a 3+ cover save for it.

A friend of mine has also demonstrated the fearsome power of the new special characters, and I have a healthy respect for Pedro Kantor. I myself am looking into getting Darnath Lysander once I have a sizeable contigent of Termies for a nasty bolter-spam surpise with Deep Strike.

However you look at it, Space Marines are a very flexible army. The key is learning where to best apply your forces and how to get the most bang for your buck points-wise. Losing isn't a bad thing so long as you learn from the mistakes of battles past. Focus on building a core army you can use in nearly any situation, then add on units that compliment your favorite strategies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Thanks for the help and advice everyone. I recently got a Rhino for my Tac Squad and switched out my Captain for a Librarian and that alone has helped quite a lot.

I see that there are quite a few good things to be had from a SM force, I just don't have many of em lol.

I really like iron clad dreadnoughts from the stats, also the command squad and bikes look pretty appealing.

BTW heres what I was using in my games and was seemingly useless ranging from 500 - 850 pts.

Captain w/powersword
Tac-Squad, ML, Flamer
Scouts w/snipers, ML, Sgt. Telion
Terminators w/ assault cannon
Dreadnought w/ MM or Assault Cannon

Now in addition to the above I have a Rhino, Predator, an additional Dreadnought, Librarian, and a Chaplain.
 

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Vanillia marines allow you do take some thnings that other chapters can't such as LS Storm, Ironclad and Thundefrie Cannons. Also they allow various chapters which can change the way an army plays such as Salamanders, Imperial Fists and raven guard.
 

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in general, shooty termies are not worth it in vanilla marines, since they're not really shooty (storm bolters don't count as shooty =P), and only get the 5+ invul. In the world of melta and plasma we live in, shooty termies die quick. On the other hand, TH/SS termies can beat face and survive, so they're a much better option. If you can change your termies to TH/SS that would help you a lot.

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I mean, Space Marines are a beginner army + most people don't get them because they have a Khorne DP problem they need fixing. Its a fun army for SM enthusiasts and believers.

With that being said, lets not discount some of the downplayed elements of the SM:
Danath Lysander, for example, allows his squad re-roll 'to-hit' bolter, heavy bolter, storm bolter, and bolt pistol shots, not to mention he is an eternal warrior, runs a master crafted thunder hammer and has +2/+3 save. Stick him in a squad of terms or sterngaurd, and that will be your power-punching force.

Now, the way to combat orc hordes is veeeeery simple: orbital bombardment, whirlwinds, and landraider redeemers packed with a bunch of antsy CC terms and a chap master.

And lastly, your terms should be fine vs. his 1k sons, just punch them with those power fists or something. Berserkers, well, have frankly nothing on CC terms so if any do survive after your CC terms are done with them, just shoot 'em with something, they're basically still SM's as far as basic stats are concerned.
 

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I am watching Mythbusters, so just very quickly: (and also, welcome to the game! :) )

Captain is good, at range and melee as well, do not overspend points. Stick him into a unit. Has awesome command squad.
Chapter master is overpriced by 25 points. Also has shitty Honour guard.
Chaplain makes you lose Chapter tactics (important) and does not make SM cc units good.
Librarian is the best. Yay for the power of books :)
Also epistolary sucks majorly. Take another libby instead.
Forgemaster is harder to use without beamer but playable, or can snipe in an unbelievable manner. Stick into scouts without Sean for good protection;)


Tac squad is scoring, can take the best transport in game, multimelta and a flamer, maybe a combi-melta, park in midfield, shoot out of hatch. They are hard to kill. Can also nicely support anything else in the army.
Scout are cheap and scoring. Without rifles bad, with rifles can hurt monsters with high T and pin squads. Telion can snipe special weapons etc. from squads. Which is good:)
Assaults are bad at assaulting. Even with a Chaplain.
Shooty termies are worse than cc termies, storm bolters aren't anything special. Assault cannon is worst, dual rockets and flamer is more playable.
TH+SS+LC is very good, can DS with beacons or ride in LR.
Preds are cheap and good as is Vindie. Whirlwind bad.
Dreads are also playable, either dakka version (missile launcher, plasma or assault) or rifle version (2x autocannon). Replace storm bolter with flamer. Sticking to multimelta is also good, as is venerable upgrade if you can spare the points imho.
Ironclads AV 13.
Razorback and twin plasma is great and can have a scoring unit inside.
Sternguard awesome, but pricy. Either combi-meltas or heavy flamers.
Speeders kitted with bolters, flamers or meltas are very good suicidal units.
Devastators are overpriced. At most playable with rockets.
Thunder cannon is nice, but vulnerable. Good against hordes.
Calgar, Tigurius, Cato bad. Cassius also bad, but much better than regular chaplain for 25pts. Chronus very bad.
Lysander weird and schizophrenic, Pedro is stubborn, but otherwise ok, Shrike ok and Vulkan awesome.

Support your units with one another, use the mobility of your transports, utilize chapter tactics + atsknf (fail morale, run away safely, rapid fire back etc.).
Don't play Arnie with tacticals.
Bolters excel at 12 range, which is close enough for enemy charge, so watch closely. Multimelta inside rhino awesome, shoot even at expense of others. Its range is 24 and then double power at 12.
Stay in cover.
Don't play plasma. Only exception is command squad (feel no pain).
Play a lot of melta and flamers.
Use the right tool for the right time. Use autocannon (s7) to kill rhinos and meltas against LRs.
Tacticals suck, so don't run in guns blazing.
Hide in the metal boxes, use them for cover, as roadblocks and los-deniers.
Advance into the midfield. You are not Tau, no gunlines for marines.
Bikes are only powerful if you take Captain to unlock them as troops, then combat squad them.
Don't spam tacticals, they are bad. Take only required amount (1x hq + 2x troops)

Suggested changes:
Captain, melee or range, can do both 100+
Librarian 100 (null zone + something, avenger perhaps)

Tac squad with multimelta, flamer, combi-melta and rhino 215
Scouts x10 plus Connery 190
-ml 10+-

Assault termies x5 200+
- 3x thss
- 2x LC
- or some combination thereof

Shooty Dread under 200
and one more under 200 (vener?)

Predator
- 60 with autocannon
- 120 with las sponsons

about 1300 points. You can add a myriad of things. For example, replace scouts with another tac squad (in rhino!), add plasmabacks, add sternguard, add raider for termies, add melta bikes/speeders, add flamers, captain on bike etc. Should be good as a start. Don't forget to experiment for yourself to see what you like best. Concentrate firepower, play as a team and don't paint them as ultramarines, be so kind :p:grin:

Old list:
Captain w/powersword
Tac-Squad, ML, Flamer
Scouts w/snipers, ML, Sgt. Telion
Terminators w/ assault cannon
Dreadnought w/ MM or Assault Cannon

Now in addition to the above I have a Rhino, Predator, an additional Dreadnought, Librarian, and a Chaplain.
 

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I know nothing of Space Marines (Besides the Librarian sucking when you play as Eldar ;) ) But I DO know about playing a new army. If possible, try and get in a game with another vanilla Space MArine veteran. Either getting beat by his kung-fu, or watching him smite your mutual enemies in a 4-way game should help you find some neat tricks you didnt think of and show you a good build for your army.
 

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thats a great point mathai.

i also agree with 43 regarding termies..
.. you could tear your current arms off, buy the set of 5 th/ss from GW and throw them in a land raider, and though that isn't a complete thought (with respect to what you have/will field with it), you roll that mofo up the middle and you'll make it through often enough to satisfy your need to demolish some units. back it up with some predation and i think you will be on your way.

good luck tomateo
 

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They can get Vulkan and doube their efficacy with the game-defining weapons of the metagame (meltas and flamers) for a very affordably price.

Also, TH/SS termies, everyone's favorite will-never-lose CC beasts.

Librarians are affordable and versatile. Get I10 and Force Weapon that Tyranid monster's 6 wounds instantly! Especially fun with Swarmlords. Also, blocking other people's psykers is a great thing.

Not sure how many people agree, but i find Land Speeders awesome. Fast, cheap skimmers that can mount multi-meltas and go for side and rear arms. Deep Strike them and the enemy really won't be able to do anything against them.
 

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The vanilla list is very flexible. The special characters, particularly Vulkan and Pedro, are very good, and they all really change the character of the army.

Here's a list I like:-

Vulkan

5 CC Termies (3LC + 2TH+SS)

LR Redeemer with MM.

10 Tac Marines including Sgt with PF, Melta and MM with Rhino transport.

5 Tac Marines including Sgt with PF in Razorback with TL Assault cannons

5 Tac Marines including sgt with PF in Razorback with TL Assault Cannon

2 Dreads with MM

That should be a tad under 1500 points (which is the size that most Codex lists are play-tested at I believe)

Vulkan can travel with the Termies or either of the Razorback crews. If the latter he's a nasty surprise when he leads the assault.

The army has no firepower over 24" but from there on in its lethal. The 4 MM all count as twin-linked and they are AP1 (so can destroy a vehicle on a glancing hit). The Assault cannons (there are 3 in this list as the Redeemer has one as standard) are the best value guns in the 40K universe in my opinion (and only available to loyalist Marines). TL Assault Cannon is a better anti-armour weapon than a TL Lascannon and vastly superior to anything at mowing down armoured infantry.

Vulkan can go toe-to toe with almost any opponent (I5 is particularly handy).

The Dreads are great v armour and good at tieing up hordes (but avoid the Ork Nob with 29 ablative wounds from his Boy-mates) whilst you move round them.

Low Troops count is offset by (a) Combat squads and (b) mobility.

And did I mention that the combination of the Redeemer's flamestorm cannons and the Termies is the nearest you'll get to an unstoppable assault?

Just persevere with the SM and work out your own style of play. Then choose the characters and weapons that enhance that style.

Regards
TT
 
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