I know this is Advanced Tau
Tactica, but advancing the path of the Greater Good involves understanding its adversaries. And who but the dreaded gue'la Space Marines threaten the Empire most?
Since the release of 5th Edition, I've kept track of games played in a somewhat fluffy "Art of War" style document.
Maybe others can use this to enhance their own tactics?
Listed below the Ten Game Summary are my army lists at 1,850 and 2,000 points. The 2,000 point list is by far the more effective of the two!
If you would like to see some of my finished marines, click here
!Ultramarines 3rd Company Battle Log – 5th Edition
Major Losses......................31. Innocentia IX: 1850 versus Necrons [dawn of war, kill points] – Major Victory
A restructuring of tactics allowed the heroic warriors of the 3rd to avenge their brothers’ defeat some decades earlier by exterminating the necron plague from Innocentia IX. The final score was 7 to 2, with lascannons, terminators, and a refused-flank strategy all contributing to the win. The MVPs were unquestionably the 10-strong squad of terminators.Moral: Necrons have been severely weakened by 5th Edition 40k. They are weak in that they rely on a variety of troops to field a balanced force; this dependence on variety makes their actions predictable.2. Foetorous IV: 1850 versus Tau [long table edges, 2 objectives] – Draw
A deep-strike mishap early in the game (in which my 460-point Terminator squad was shunted to an un-important corner of the board) prevented the Ultramarines from waging an effective offensive. However, the blue-skins were unable to penetrate the armored wall of Space Marines holding their own objective. An over-reliance on Deep Strike was cited in the annals as the reason for mission failure.Moral: There is no such thing as a sure thing. Only risk what you are willing to lose.3. Foetorous IV: 1850 versus Angels of Caliban Deathwing [long table edges, 5 objectives] – Minor Loss
A training exercise between honorable chapters. The unstoppable nature of Terminators, coupled with the unfamiliarity of the Ultramarines’ captain leading the mission, resulted in mission failure: the last untagged terminator of an enemy squad claimed victory for his team, despite the efforts of two twin-linked Predator lascannons to tag him. Stupid invulnerable saves.Moral: Shoot one squad at a time until everything in it is dead. Don’t waste ammunition shooting at distractions. The Ultramarines lost this encounter because their leadership became distracted.4. Foetorous IV: 1850 versus Dark Angels Deathwing [spearhead, victory points] – Major Loss
Another training exercise. Much, much more brutal. The Dark Angels’ Land Raider was their key to victory, as the Ultramarines’ Commander had neglected to bring along sufficient firepower to deal with it.Moral: AV 14 is a *BAD WORD DELETED*. Meltaguns are no longer a novelty but a necessity for all competitive play.5. Moros: 1000 versus Orks [long table edges, kill points] – Draw
Led by Tigurius, a raid to assassinate the ork Warboss Gruznik turned into a fight for mere survival. This was the Commander’s first time working with Tigurius, and the full capability of the Chief Librarian was sadly never realized; he and his retinue of terminators were overrun by the Orkish Horde early on, and only by the Emperor’s Grace did they survive. The Commander faced several months of prayer and fasting as penance for his poor planning.Moral: Do not use expensive Characters in low-points games. It is better instead to field more basic troops!6. Bel Playn: 4000 Space Marines + Orks versus Tau + Necrons + Tyranids [long table edges, kill points] – Major Victory
Investigating reports of an eldar warp-gate, Chief Librarian Tigurius discovers a tear in the fabric of reality itself! On the distant planet Bel Playn, time and space had distorted to usher in a host of extradimensional entities. Despite the planet being ruled by greenskins, the Ultramarines were able to send in an efficient strike force and close the tear before irreparable damage was done to the space-time continuum. Moral: Ork allies effectively make Space Marines into a horde army. This is very unbalanced but also a lot of fun!7. Defense of Masali: 2000 Space Marines versus Imperial Guard [spearhead, objectives] – Major Loss
Traitors are dangerous foes indeed! In this encounter, two large infantry squads – each with many lascannon teams – held valuable territory, whilst chimera squads advanced to seize more ground. A pair of Leman Russ battle tanks gunned down space marine armor, and although the Ultramarines sustained very few actual casualties, the traitors held their ground. Most unfortunately, a deep strike accident caused most of the Terminators to arrive half-a-mile away from their projected coordinates.Moral: Remember your lessons! This battle was lost for the same reasons as Game #2!8. Defense of Masali: 2000 Space Marines versus Eldar [spearhead, take and hold table quarters + kil points] – Minor Victory
An uncoordinated eldar strike force met its end in the deserts outside Masali’s habitable zone. Dark Reapers attempted to siege the armored spearhead and slow its arrival, but the terminators of 1st Co. combined with a textbook refused flank strategy won the day. (My opponent was a good guy, fun to play against, but his army list was ...lacking...).Moral: The novice can be defeated easily by seasoned tactics. Refused flank is a famous tactic because it is so effective!9. Masali Plains: 2000 Space Marines versus Warp Lions Space Marines [long table edge, central objective] – Major Victory
A training exercise between honorable chapters, the Warp Lions were sadly outclassed by the Ultramarines’ superior tactics and firepower. The Ultramarines never stepped foot outside their armor, shelling the Warp Lions from a distance and sweeping in after the rout to claim the central objective.Moral: Remember the adage, “Don’t throw good money after bad.” If you allow yourself to become desperate, you will act like a desperate man! You are more likely to take senseless risks and lose the match, so keep a cool head.10. Sixth Moon of Phrenius: 3200 Space Marines (Ultramarines and Iron Hands) versus Necrons [long table edge, five objectives] – Draw
A necron advance war party was bested here in the desolate Iron Swamps. The necrons fielded a number of excellent core units though they had little in the way of mobility. The Space Marines fielded nearly twenty terminators; army composition was against the necrons from the get-go, and (predictably) many were slaughtered in hand-to-hand combat. Although the game was called due to time on turn 4, the space marines had a clear advantage and would undoubtedly have won on turn 5.Moral: A balanced army can adapt to handle any foe, while an army built solely to exploit certain strengths must continually play to those strengths or be defeated. The latter is locked into a predictable pattern of behavior and, therefore, much easier to defeat.THOUGHTS AFTER 10 GAMESCounter Point to Lesson 2. Always keep a force in reserve. This force can be used to achieve ‘encirclement,’ a devastating psychological attack. Make the enemy feel as though he is surrounded on all sides. Allow your visible forces to become “horns,” encircling the enemy and growing ever and ever tighter; your reserves then become the “loins,” entering the battle just as the encircled portion of your enemy’s forces are most weakened.
Counterpoint to Encirclement Strategy: By holding the center, you force your opponent to divide his forces. A force divided is easier to conquer.
The true power of the Space Marines lay in their versatility. Although individually expensive, the Space Marines can bring to bear the finest weapons in the galaxy. In the right quantity and diversity, Space Marines can best any foe.
They defeat Orks and Tyranids with the quality of their weaponry.
They can defeat the Tau, Necrons and Eldar in hand-to-hand combat, and by weathering the devastating barrage of fire such opponents bring to an engagement. Against Eldar especially, proper deployment is key to success.
Space Marines are weakest against other space marines, especially against forces fielding a large number of Terminators. The durability of the Terminator squad makes it an obvious threat, thus allowing a clever opponent more opportunity for misdirection and intelligence gathering. Do not be fooled! Terminators can be killed by a concentrated barrage of fire.
By not allowing oneself to become distracted, one can overcome the camouflage Terminators bring to the game and see through a clever opponent’s misdirection.
Most important of all: a space marine player must remember conventional wisdom. Slow and steady wins the race!- 1850 -
Chaplain TiberJump Pack
Terminator Squad Duro2 Cyclone Missile Launchers
“Brother Zed” - DreadnoughtAssault Cannon
“Brutalis” - DreadnoughtMissile Launcher, Twin-linked Lascannon
Assault Squad BrockSergeant w/Power Fist + Bolt Pistol
Plasma Pistol x2
Tactical Squad Stygiusw/Rhino
Sergeant w/Power Fist + Bolt Pistol
Tactical Squad Samosw/Rhino
Flamer, Plasma Cannon
Tactical Squad Theraw/Rhino
Flamer, Plasma Cannon
Predator Annihilator – 130Heavy Bolter Sponsons
Predator Annihilator – 130Heavy Bolter Sponsons- 2000 -
Master of the Forge
Dreadnought with twin-linked Lascannon and Missile Launcher
Dreadnought with Assault Cannon and Close Combat Weapon (with built-in storm bolter)
Terminator Squad (#10) with Cyclone Missile Launcher (x2)
Scout Squad (#5) with sniper rifles
Tactical Squad (#10) with Rhino IMeltagun, Multi-melta, Sergeant with Power Fist
Tactical Squad (#10) with Rhino IIMeltagun, Plasma Cannon, Sergeant with Power Fist
Tactical Squad (#10) with Rhino IIIMeltagun, Plasma Cannon, Sergeant with Power Fist
Dreadnought with Plasma Cannon and Missile Launcher
Predator Annihilator with Heavy Bolter Sponsons
Predator Annihilator with Heavy Bolter Sponsons