I’ve taken a longer look behind the new Marine Codex – and I have some thoughts.
Hey, Goatboy here – guess what I won the North American Grand Tournament this past weekend! I will probably do a write up on it before long – I won it with the evil might of Iconoclast Chaos Knights with the help of those sneaky Red Corsair Renegades. I got a sweet skull goblet thingie — death to the false emperor and all that jazz.
But we are not talking about Chaos today – instead, it’s more of my thoughts about the new Marine Codex.
So far, I think the book feels pretty good. It feels like an 8th edition book and, with the upcoming supplements, it has shown how they are starting to think of these main big books as building blocks for unique armies that can spiral off of them. It also really shows you how they could just fold in the other legions into using the big book with a few small tweaks, more rules, and exciting abilities to fill the whole thing out. Now it does make your “army” book more expensive – but you get a whole lot room to build and work than before. Plus, the supplements are pretty much full of fluff, art plates, and history to feed those wanting more than to call their red Marines a successor chapter of the Ultramarines.
Successors, Tacticals & Bikes OH MY!
That’s an interesting question as well. Will see forced painting guidelines for marine players? At least with the new rules for making your own Successor chapters. I found those rules interesting because I think there is some play there with the increased Range option and some of the other stacking powers. The Supplements feel more powerful, but I am sure someone will come up with something substantial. It just feels like there could be something there that’s fun.
The other weird thing from this book is that it feels like regular Tactical Marines got more powerful. A drop in their point cost mixed with access to a lot of options (weapons, transports, etc.) means these guys are not dead like we all thought they were. I mean, look at the White Scars and the lack of a Primaris bike. I think it’s very weird that as soon as you pass the Rubicon to become a Primaris character, you all of sudden get scared of wheels and treads? I am wondering if we’ll see some of the other heroes pass that threshold, get bigger, and become another expensive single mini to purchase. I would love to see an Inceptor based Shrike running around the tabletop as well as the first real “terminator” like Primaris with Lysander the bringing of the boom.
This leads me to wonder if one of the six initial supplements will end up being the Imperial Fist and friends (Crimson/Black Templar). This would be a great value book as it lets you play all the yellow, blue, and black marines you’d want. I say this because the Ultramarine Supplement is pretty beefy (at 80+ pages), while the White Scars sits at some more akin to a smaller supplement. Thankfully the rules for the White Scars make it still pretty good, but I would have loved to see a true Veteran biker squad in there.
The new book does put a big hammer in the nail of biker captains as the only ones left are the Index one and the “Captain” for the White Scars on a bike. They don’t get the Angels of Death rule, which leaves them out of all the extra powers from the new book. I am guessing we’ll see a Forgeworld update to help those expensive guys out and maybe bring some kind of love to the good guy dreadnoughts.
Right now, the big chatter on the book is the inclusion of Drop Pods and matched rules breaking. Yes, the Drop Pods don’t follow Tactical Reserve rules. This means it can come in turn 1 – 7 and doesn’t count towards the amount you can have off the table. It could be part of a very troll heavy army. I know a lot of people are talking about using them to block armies in, but I feel that is less of an issue with current builds and what armies have available to them. Think about how the early days of 8th had scout based models used to push opponents back. A lot of armies can easily get that, or they don’t care about drop pods as they can easily fly over – or murder 2-3 in a turn (Chaos knights/Knights…). Even Orks just send a unit jumping over and then deal with each pod quickly because they don’t explode when given a bad touch or laser shot in the engine hole. I just don’t see the value in spending so many points on something that isn’t going to kill your opponent. A few in an army isn’t bad – as having something that can come down turn 5-6 to grab an objective or mission point is a compelling option for Marines.
Things I don’t like – the Thunder Hammer for characters went up in points like crazy. These smash captains of old might end up getting an arm popped off and replaced by a Powerfist. If this book becomes the centerpiece for all marines, then this will be coming for the other smash captains from other books. It is probably needed as all these new Marine jabronis got an extra attack out of all of this when that little FAQ update comes out this weekend. But as much as it sucks the Thunder Hammer got taxed like your yearly bonus – the Thunder Hammer for, say, your Veteran Intercessor Sarge did not. That’s right – you can throw that smash option on your sarge and have a 4-5 attack jerk running around hitting bad guys in the face. This is pretty nutty as it isn’t too expensive and when you mix in some of the other rules for the units you could get at 3+ hitting jerk pretty easily. Heck, if this comes to Intercessors for Space Wolves, then we have some potent options – as well as a client that will have me searching for more Thunder Hammers to use.
Overall the book brings a lot of hope to the Marine players out there. If you’ve been playing for a while then you should have some kind of Marine army somewhere. Or at least you can get one relatively cheap. It’s great to have a book that will make the army better, more varied, and finally just interesting. I think they still might have some issues with Knights – but they put a number on any horde based army. Those pesky Plague Bearers giving you trouble? How about a plethora of marine bullet hell to come down and wreck those stinky Petes with the holy fire of the bolt.
~For the Emperor!