One Line Unit Reviews – Space Marines

Hi everyone, long time no see. I definitely don’t have the motivation to continue doing lists and tournament reviews on this blog, so it’s fallen by the wayside. I’ve had a few ideas for editorials, but they haven’t really manifested.

Instead, I’m going to tentatively start a new series! One Line Unit Reviews. The idea is going to be to take a codex (or index for the time being) and literally write one line to gauge its competitive merit. This ‘review’ series should be taken with a grain of salt, but hopefully there’ll be enough truth in each one to give you both a laugh and some ideas about where to go with the army.

So in light of that, Ill be starting with the big old Space Marine codex. Every reviewer has to start here right? It’s practically a rite of passage! I’ll be going through in codex order, so feel free to follow along at home.

HQs –
Marneus Calgar – Budget Gulliman
Chief Librarian Tigirius – Raven Guard on a stick with good denying
Chaplain Cassius – If you really want to pay more for a chaplain you weren’t taking anyway
Captain Sicarius – Budget Calgar
Sergeant Chronus – Killshot really needs to hit
Telion – I needed to fill that HQ slot and figured a sniper would do less nothing than a techmarine
Lysander – I punch stuff real hard
Pedro Kantor – If you’re running Assault Centurions I guess
High Marhsall Helbrecht – I punch stuff sort of hard
The Emperors Champion – The fluffiest of the fluff choices
Chaplain Grimaldus and Cenobyte Servitors – I pay more for the privilege of bringing useless units along with me
Kor’sarro Khan – Dude, where’s my Bike?
Vulkan He’Stan – What edition is it?
Kayvaan Shrike – I’m too hipster to play Ultramarines but I still don’t want to lose
Captain – Chasing pigeons with a Thunder Hammer and a Jump Pack or warming the HQ Slot Cheaply
Primaris Captain – All the downsides, none of the benefits
Librarian – Why do CSM get the good powers?
Primaris Librarian – Why do I cost so much?
Chaplain – Don’t Chapter Masters let you reroll in both phases?
Primaris Chaplain – Chaplains are known for needing the resilience of an extra wound..
Techmarine – ‘Misplaced’ his axe somewhere so he can claim cheapest in slot
Lieutenants – I wanted a filler HQ that does something
Primaris Lieutenants – Had their moment in the sun when the above didn’t exist

Troops –
Tactical Squad – Not aggressively awful but do nothing well
Intercessor Squad – I give it two more chapter approved before these guys cost the same as Scouts, hold off til then
Scout Squad – Shoot well, block well
Crusader Squad – Closest you’re getting to a horde army.

Elites –
Primaris Ancient – I’ll hold the Standard of the Emperor but I’m gonna charge you for the privelege
Chapter Ancient – At least he’s cheaper than the Primaris Ancient
Chapter Champion – Bitterly regrets the addition of weapon damage
Honour Guard – Stopping wounds on characters that can’t be shot anyway is still relevant right?
Company Ancient – Enjoys watching his friends die.
Apothecary – Will overcostedly bring your overcosted models back to life
Company Champion – They were an optional upgrade in 7th, they’re somehow less than that now
Company Veterans – Fill no specific role that something else doesn’t do better
Servitors – Minimum Squad Size 4??
Primaris Apothecary – Overcosted version of the overcosted guy
Reiver Squad – Super Scary Combat Appearance, Ity Bity Close Combat Weapons
Aggressor Squad – If they get to you, you’re doing something wrong
Terminator Squad – The last time we were good, the last good terminator movie was in cinemas
Terminator Assault Squad – They’re still paying for 5th Edition
Cataphractii Terminator Squad – More survivable, same weapons
Tartaros Terminator Squad – They can move faster AFTER they deep strike
Sternguard Veteran Squad – Bet you wish you hadn’t modeled these guys with combi-weapons
Dreadnought – We can still use the Index right?
Ironclad Dreadnought – Hilarious with Raven Guard and smoke launchers, Invisible Wall
Venerable Dreadnought – If you’re taking Dreads, take these instead if you have the points
Contemptor Dreadnought – Forgeworld do this better
Redemptor Dreadnought – They’ve got the gameplay to match the beer gut
Centurion Assault Squad – I own 5 of these and wish I didn’t

Fast Attack –
Bike Squad – 2 Wounds, lots of shots, completely outclassed
Assault Squad – Cheapish mobile scoring, just don’t expect them to do anything
Land Speeders – Trying really hard to be a mobile Razorback but defeats the point of having a Razorback
Attack Bike Squad – cheap slot filler, has decent firepower for what it is
Scout Bike Squad – Shotguns and go!
Inceptor Squad – Too expensive to kill your models with plasma, too low impact to use with heavy bolters

Heavy Support –
Devastator Squad – You bring 0 or you bring 15
Centurion Devastator Squad – One model has the points cost to match its firepower and then some
Hellblaster Squad – Keepin’ the hope alive for good Primaris, AP-4 is a hell of a drug
Thunderfire Cannon – Thank fuck for that strategem
Hunter – Please let me know if you’ve ever killed a flier with one of these
Stalker – Everyone knows Ap-1 D2 is ideal for killing vehicles with 12+ wounds
Whirlwind – Awkwardly between Predators and Razorbacks, have their place
Predator – 3 Damage is a great sweet spot and Lascannons never go amiss, Killshot is cherry on top
Vindicator – ‘I’ll just take 3 Lascannons and average about the same’
Land Raider – Less survivable and shooty than it looks, prone to getting bogged down
Land Raider Crusader – Suffering for the sins of Stormravens
Land Raider Redeemer – Too short range to ever be effective

Dedicated Transports –
Rhino – Rush Rush Baby, but nothing good to go inside
Razorback – GW took pity on Gladius players and made the free stuff god.
Drop Pod – But not that much pity
Land Speeder Storm – Salty because my loadouts are illegal post index.
Repulsor – For some reason a transport, it has a shitload of firepower on a resilient frame, just needs someone to make them work competitively but there’s room here

Fliers –
Stormhawk Interceptor – Cheap and Anti-flier, but GW are too, so these suck
Stormraven Gunship – Please GW, no more nerfs
Stormtalon Gunship – Gunship is a misnomer and everyone knows how to beat the good fliers now, so the meh ones are even worse

Lords of War –
Roboute Gulliman – Force Multiplier taken to 11, if you don’t at least consider him in Imperium, let alone space marines, you’re doing something wrong.


So there we have it, a long but short winded run down of the Space Marines Codex.

As a bonus I’ll do a couple of Top lists for each book, though the criteria will vary:

Top 5 Units Paying for the sins of previous editions
5 – Command Squads
4 – Terminator Assault Squads
3 – Librarians
2 – Centurion Devastator Squads
1 – Drop Pods

Top 5 Units that just need one push to be great
5 – Inceptors
4 – Aggressors
3 – Predators
2 – Repulsors
1 – Hellblasters


Thanks very much for reading! Leave me any feedback/disagreements/vehement hatred here, or on twitter @InnesAWilson, and feel free to leave any suggestions for the next codex, or your own one line unit reviews of units I’ve touched on here!


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