20 Things to Fix in the Space Marine Codex – part 3 by Digital Unicorn

12 Nov

This weeks post won’t be my usual diatribe of vitriolic hate, I hope. I can’t promise anything but, ill try. I mean its not like I got a complaint or anything, that would be ridiculous. Yes. Ridiculous. That definately didn’t happen, no one called Dylan asked Dave for my personal email address and picked apart my articles piece by piece and make me feel completely worthless. That definately DIDN’T happen.

So, now we’ve cleared up what did and didn’t happen last week, let’s get on to this weeks item from my List. I can say that it won’t be my normal rant-fest, as today I’m going to be discussing a unit I actually like, Scouts. Ill only be proposing a few minor changes to help them match up against the now beefed up Tact squad. I’m gonna squeeze 2 smaller points into one list item as they won’t make full article alone. See, I’m not even cheating to get to 20. See Dylan? I mean, see, hypothetical complainant.

So, first of the tweaks…

“I’m very sneaky sir, you will let’e me change your socks”


One thing that’s always annoyed me a little about scouts is their cost. Obviously we all wish things in our codex were cheaper but, it just seemed a bit daft to me that the “inferior” scouts cost the same as marines. What’s that you say? They don’t cost the same? Come on guys let’s be serious here. They do. What? They do!

While not being actually mandatory, in most situations its so close to mandatory that even Rob “Showbiz” Madely couldn’t squeeze a fantasy Cav base through the gap. There are only 2 situations I have ever seen in my gaming life where a unit of scouts didn’t have cloaks. One, was in a 500pt game where my points were a little tight and I just really didn’t fancy dropping my Land Raider. The Second, is when I see people using them in a Land Speeder Storm to get that first turn charge, people tend to scrimp points on that clearly sacrificial unit.

Aside from those rare occurances scouts come ready equipped with Camo Cloaks. Which as a 3pt upgrade means they now cost the same as a Tact marine.

So let’s compare, most of their stats are the same and with a Veteren Sergeant they have the same Leadership. They have the same Strength and Toughness, wounds and attacks. The only differences are the drop in Weapon and Balistic Skill and the weaker armour save. So the question to ask is, is stealth worth -1 on 3 different stats? I’m not so sure.

I think the easiest way to solve this is reduce the Camo Cloak cost from 3pts to 2pts. That way we don’t affect the base scout cost which is probably pretty balanced and let them still be at least the cheaper option, if not the better one. 15pts for a Scout equivilent is really not unprecidented, wolf scouts come out at that price and retain the higher Weapon and Balistic skill.

Your so very Special, I wish I was Special,

But I’m a Scout…

Once again I’m going to bang on the same drum I seem to do every week, give me more Special Weapons. I know, I know, you all hate me but, the meta gamers love me. Alright Dylan, ill explain myself. As we’ve already established in myy previous article, the plethora of 5 man meltagun toating squads knows no limits. Everywhere I turn, there stood ready to rain super heated justice on me, are 5 models in power armour with Madaline the Meltagunner smiling cheerily. So their elevated brother marines get the option. So what?

Well it doesn’t end there. Blood Claws, scouts in better armour, get them, cheaply too. Wolf Scouts, although a class above, get them. I’m gonna have to lay off Blood Angels this week as this unit is in their Codex but, you’ll feel my wrath next week pretty boys! I’m sure if Chaos had any troops that we’re BS3 they’d have option for a Special Weapon. But, do you know what? I don’t even need to pick a Marine Codex to justify myself with this week. Do you want to know why?

Guardsmen can take Special Weapons.

An Infantry Platoon. Just about the lowest rung in the Imperial guard Military structure. Fodder to the known galaxy, come better equipped than members of the most elite force available to the Imperium. For goodness sake, a Guardsman with a flamer costs the same as a Black Templar Initiate!

Game balance aside, what i’d like to know, is where, in their illustrious career between Scout and Tactical Marine our favourite little post humans actually learn to use a Plasmagun? Because for the life of me I can’t find the missing link. Can you? You mean to tell me that upon ascension to full Marine they’re just handed a complex weapon and told,

“There ya go Barry, work it out…”


So, after even considering the fluff the conclusion I’ve  come to is this. Scouts should have the following options.

5pts Flamer

10pts Meltagun

15pts Plasmagun

Seems only fair to me. Now, what I can’t decide, is if they should get them at 5 men? Should it be an either/or situation with the Heavies. Or should work similary to what Franco suggested last week except reversed, Heavy at 5 men then Special at 10?

The first option means we the player get to choose their role and do what we wish. The second means that they retain their primary “DeckChair” function but, reward those willing to invest a few more points into them. So I’m opening this one out, what do you think?

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it.

Shut up Dylan.

Remember, hold fast, hold the line and don’t stop reading until…

Digital Unicorn is GO!!!


3 Responses to “20 Things to Fix in the Space Marine Codex – part 3 by Digital Unicorn”

  1. Mark Perry November 14, 2011 at 12:25 #

    Sniper scouts work with Telion as he gives the unit stealth and so you save on the camo. Ability to pick out ICs/upgrades in a unit makes the sniper/ML unit a threat on the field.

    No Telion? Run them as a 90 point deckchair. If the snipers hit something then treat that as a bonus. Having a 90 point objective holder is a benefit.

    • Digital Unicorn November 16, 2011 at 12:32 #

      Sorry it took me so long to get back,

      Yes, I completely agree, in fact I have that 90 point deckchair unit in my tournie army. But, I just feel 85 is just right considering they don’t have power armour.

      Telion is cool, and iv made much use of him but, I’m not a fan of having to take a Character to make a unit “work”, if u get me? Lots of the techniques that use him are very good tho.

  2. Andy Ovel November 16, 2011 at 13:31 #

    I like Scouts, it’s a pain the’re only BS3 for snipers, but WS3 is not so much of a pain, they normally hit on 4+, unless they are fighting WS7, and to be honest if you are throwing Scouts against anything WS7, well, good luck with THAT! 🙂

    And yes more special weapons please! 😦

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