PDA

View Full Version : "Down to earth 40k"



Iuris
15-09-2009, 16:43
(Rule of cool, take a short break, please. There's a nice monopoint nail bed over there for you to take a short nap on and some granite if you're feeling peckish.)

Everyone else, I'd like to invite you all to join me in some thinking about a slightly different Warhammer 40000 - a more "down to earth" one. I do that a lot. I like my sci fi a bit more realistic, and yet like 40k (it got me while I was still young, and I can't get rid of liking it...). So I find myself mentally censoring every bit of background and reshaping it to fit an "under the top" version. Amazingly, I don't think this necessarily means a less impressive universe - but it usually does mean a more "brainy" one. So, how about it?


I'd like to start with the Space Marines, since they are usually the core of the whole universe. Someone says Warhammer 40000, the first thing we think of is HUGE pauldrons, isn't it? Honestly?


So, We have the big guys in armor. Usually portrayed charging at the enemy, yelling "FOR THE EMPEROR!!!" at the top of their lungs, swinging a chainsword. Well, this always has me thinking, why do they have to train for decades in that case? Running forward, the recruits should know how to do that by the time they join the aspirants. Getting better at swinging a chainsword, OK, but is that it?

Me, I see them as a far more "skilled" operation. A squad of space marines coming at you, you don't even see. They are experienced enough that the one you're looking at is behind the best cover available - and in the mean time, the squadmates you aren't looking at are sprinting to next cover - but you'll only ever see them with your peripheral vision. By the time you turn toward them, they're in cover - and the other one is sprinting toward the next spot - one from where YOU no longer have cover.

If you fall into an Space marine ambush, you'll find that they all stay put - because they have already taken the ideal positions where they are in cover, their fields of fire overlapping and leaving no safe space at all for you - except the spot right there behind the rocks. And when you jump behind them, the last thing you see is a 40th millenium equivalent to a claymore anti infantry land mine.

Also, I see them out of armor quite a lot. The marine's soul's armor etc. etc. etc. - you take a day off tonight while the marine puts on a chameleoline cloak (or an old fashioned ghillie suit) and do some silent sneaking around, planting explosive charges on enemy heavy weapon emplacements and similar. A marine is essentially a veteran scout, after all, remember? And out of armor, he can fit through access hatches, climb up normal ladders and similar.

Now, the armor. Mostly, we see it as damn impregnable to any weapon, enemy fire leaving cosmetic dents in the armor at best, never penetrating. However, I see the armor as much less powerful, able to take some punishment but not granting invulnerability. It just means that the marine can afford to take a single shot safely (ok, not on the weak spots - but in the half second the marine lets you have to shoot at him from the time he leaves lst good cover to the time his chainsword takes your head off, you try hitting a weak spot - try it. Play an FPS with just 1 health and only shoot headshots :) ). A protracted burst of lasgun fire hitting the same spot of the armor over and over should burn through the armor, though. So, the marine just gets an extra life - but then, with the enemy at just one life, that means guaranteed survival. Never mind that 60% of the space marine you see rushing at you is the big thick shoulderpiece.
(Why are the marines rushing enemy shooting at them, anyway? Aren't they smarter than that?)

A marine should in principle return from 99% of their missions with a spotless suit of armor. They are smart, after all, and the enemy never got a shot at them. Certainly not the enemy heavy weapon crews, who are always taken from the rear of their firing position.

And if the worst comes - either the marine didn't see the banana peel or the enemy had a smart commander deploying troops - the marine is not invulnerable himself. Harder to kill than a normal human, but mortal still. A blade cuts the carotid artery, the marine is in serious trouble. But, while a cut carotid means loss of consciousness in seconds and death soon after for a guardsman, the marine is not automatically lost. Of course, consciousness is lost in a matter of seconds, but, the Sus-an membrane (I hope I remember that correctly, the one that allows the coma state?) means the brain does not automatically die. The marine is down and out of the fight - but if someone manages to slow down the bleeding enough for the wound to close, the marine will live. A few transfusions, a short rest, and the marine is back in action. The guardsman is lost forever.

I feel the same applies to Orks, too. Cut off an arm, he goes down. But you'd better chop off the head while you're at it too, or one painboy visit later...

Oh, the weaponry. The boltgun. Every marine carries one, and yet the players do their darndest to make him replace it. In real life, the general purpose firearm is there for a reason - it's the most versatile one. There are stronger ones around, but they have their downsides. Like, for starters, ammo. A plasma gun, you get say 10 shots per plasma flask, and carry two spares. A potential 30 heavy infantry killed, good trade. A lascannon or missile launcer, 5 shots total.

With a boltgun, you carry 20 shots per magazine and carry four spare - 100 kills. It probably doesn't take half a minute to screw in a spare magazine, too. Maybe you can carry even more in the backpack. And it doesn't leave a big line of glowing plasma leading to your firing position. And you can afford to waste a few shots on covering fire. And it's small enough that you can clear rooms with it, while the lascannon would get stuck in the door. And most of all - if you hit some guy at 5 feet, the shot doesn't hit you yourself, too.

The bolter is the main weapon for a reason. It doesn't waste. And it's a damn good weapon on its own. The vast majority of marine kills would be made by it - following the philosophy of one shot one kill. A marine will have a hard time remembering when he last used it on full auto.
(Or at anything but maximum range Why are the marines always supposed to be rushing the enemy shooting at them, anyway? Aren't they smarter than that? :))

Oh, yeah, another important bit - it's not all in the firepower. The marine bolter doesn't have to be more powerful than an IG colonel's prized firearm. It could still be much better for a different reason. Maybe it is more accurate, letting the marine make full use of his superior marksmanship. Maybe it's adapted to fire in any environment. An IG colonel will fight on one world and will have a version adapted for it. A marine's may be able to fire in vacuum, a corrosive atmosphere, chocked full of flies and similar. No more powerful, but much more versatile.

If the chapter really really really needs specialized firepower... why wouldn't they have it? They have the resources of a whole world! I'm sure every strike cruiser actually carries 100 spare lascannons, 100 spare plasma guns, 100 spare grenade launchers - they are the space marines! No expenses are supposed to be spared with the marines... :)



And I like these marines better. What's actually heroic about a space marine in plot armor? The heroes that are actually vulnerable, those are the real heroes. (OK, usually not very heroic skilled professionals that aren't rushing an enemy shooting at them, they're smarter than that. :) )

canucklhead
15-09-2009, 17:00
The only real arguement I can make to that, being as I agree in theory with all you say, is the part about marines being smart enough to use the best possible tactics. True, they are that smart, but they are also tied to millenia of battle doctrine that is not founded on the best possible tactics, but on concepts of honourable battle and other antiquated ideals.

A good parallel would be the Samurai. They understood a far greater deal about infantry tactics than they actually practiced. Their peasant levies would use extremely effective tactics under the command of Samurai Warlords, but the Samurai warrior was often hamstrung when fighting anyone other than another Samurai by his code of ethics.

To a Space Marine, fighting any other way is tantamount to treason or heresy. It shows their lack of faith in the ideals of their Emperor.

But for the most part, I do agree with you, the 'reality' of 40k is near non existent. Before you condemn it too harshly though, try making up a fairly simple set of rules for a table top battle, covering all the real life possibilities you've mentioned. It's ***** nuts.

UselessThing
15-09-2009, 17:05
Down to earth is so not what I'm looking for out of 40k.

BrotherMoses
15-09-2009, 17:09
I don't know where people get the idea of Space Marines being bogged down in battle by some sort of doctrine.

Gorbad Ironclaw
15-09-2009, 17:09
I think 40k just fails if you try to look at it logically. The setting just plain doesn't work then as that's not at all how it's designed. There are just so many things that doesn't make any sense at all and wouldn't work that if you don't accept the basic premises that the whole thing does work for some reason it all falls apart.

malika
15-09-2009, 17:17
You might want to check out the stuff by Philip Sibbering: http://www.philipsibbering.com/WH40KRP/40K_1_Concepts_index.shtml

Argastes
15-09-2009, 17:26
Down to earth is so not what I'm looking for out of 40k.

The OP addressed people like you in the very first sentence of the thread, please don't post in the thread if you have nothing to contribute and are only going to scoff at the thread topic.

Malika: Phil Sibbering's stuff is not anymore realistic or down-to-earth than anything GW publishes in a codex.


I don't know where people get the idea of Space Marines being bogged down in battle by some sort of doctrine.

Well, I think people get that impression because you rarely see them fight according to anything resembling actual small-unit infantry tactics. I would say, however, that this is less because they are bogged down by a doctrine and more because the artists, fluff writers, etc. are willing to sacrifice military realism to create a certain type of imagery.

Iuris
15-09-2009, 17:30
P.S. check the tread again tomorrow. I actually drew a few funny pictures on the topic for fun :)

Philip S
15-09-2009, 17:35
@ Iuris: I agree with much of what you say.


I'd like to start with the Space Marines, since they are usually the core of the whole universe.
I think the first things to do is sort out the environments and history of the dark age so it is easier to say what enviroment the marines are designed for.

I would start with technology advances, some hypothetical ideas on sentient machines, the impact of machine economies, robot/ automated workforce, some ideas for colonisation and etc.

Once that is all in place there may be a place for marines.

I tried to do this, and ended up with marines being designed to take out Ecorium - basically self sufficient fusion powered subterranean biospheres, which are pretty much the same as the insides of ships (space hulks), and shifted everything to mundane technology - as I like architecture and engineering and all the current work on such buildings. I also like the fact the design I came up with caters to every vocal interest group we have now yet it is a place none would really like to live. A case of 'careful what you wish for'.

I also separated out mundane and 'magical' technology, so I could go hardcore sci-fi on the mundane but it did not interfere with the pure fantasy elements. The Space Marines do have a touch of the magical in my vision, but the Imperial Guard are much more down to earth.

If you can stomach the gross fantasy elements of my marines there are some interesting ' mundane' ideas, like bolters as smart weapons with modal bolts, with some less extreme sci-fi like artificial sub-brains as part of the autosense filtering information.

Keep dreaming as a 'down to Earth' vision of 40K can be a lot of fun ;)

I would also be really interested in your feedback as you seem to be on a similar wavelength.


You might want to check out the stuff by Philip Sibbering: http://www.philipsibbering.com/WH40KRP/40K_1_Concepts_index.shtml
Thanks mate ;)

Philip

Gen.Steiner
15-09-2009, 19:37
Interestingly enough, your vision of Space Marines is near enough exactly the same as mine. Note also that Powered Armour suits can be painted in camouflage patterns, and often are (or would be); while Scout Armour is almost certainly going to be in camouflage.

And that's just the Mk 1 Eyeball camo. It doesn't even begin to cover the ECM/EW suites, the active/passive scanners, the infra-red/night-vision filters, etc etc etc... a Space Marine squad has total battlefield awareness, with each Marine being able to access his fellow Marine's vision and scans, and being able to act on it.

Meanwhile, in the wider universe, the effects of DAoT genetic engineering will still be widely felt - people on planets who've had infra-vision given to them due to the low light levels, or others who can withstand zero-G much better because their ancient ancestors had their genetic baseline designed for it, and so on and so forth.

And then there's the single most important factor - time.

Homo Sapiens in the 21st Century is 40,000 years older than stone age man. What will our technology look like in another 40,000 years - even if we have forgotten a lot? The average drooling ***** of the 41st Millenium will still make us look like cro-magnon man. Think on that!

PondaNagura
15-09-2009, 20:22
honestly, even though marines are the best of the best, they would need to be crazy-reorganized from the way the Codex Astartes is setup now. I'm one of those people who thinks that you can maintain the fanciful elements of 40k, but there should be some tweaks to the stats to help people realize how fethin large the galaxy is. granted if you go too large, the whole Imperium model just wouldn't work, so Rule of Cool is more like plotglue for continuity's sake.

Each marine chapter should be tasked with their own sector of space, there should be probably around 1500 actual marines per chapter. this number does not include the constantly fluctuating number of recruits or scouts, I keep them separately for purposes of advancement in training, and genetic manipulation. scouts being the later stages where they actually fulfill an active combat role, and transformation is more stable.

in the field there would be no designation aside from rank, to signify that battle, reserve, scout and veterans would be broken down into actual separate companies. such titles and merits would be honorary, aside from the command 1st company. though some companies might have a proficiency due to circumstance for a battle preference (siege craft, planetary assault, boarding action, etc).
the 1st company, also the smallest, would have overall control maintaining communication between the other battle elements, domestic and abroad, keeping tabs on location, schedule, and resource conducting (recruits from homeworld[s] or facility replenishment mostly).
each company in itself would be for the most part autonomous. they would have their own ships, their own chain of command. their own vehicle pool, factories, training facilities, apothecarion, armory and librarium. they would have their own crews, menials and servitors to look after. they would have more than just cruisers but entire escort vessels and storage ships, as well as navigator contracts.

the thing that binds them as a chapter would be the conducting role of the 1st company, their namesake and the pschyo-conditioning that would drill brotherhood/unity into their subconscious. to be reunited in battle only when such extreme situations arise, or by chapter traditions/ceremonies to meet, debate and spar with each other to ensure that corruption does not go unchecked...maybe once every 50 years or so.

depending on the situation that calls for their attention, they could launch an entire company or commit a few squads.

I'm in the middle of rewriting some chaos fluff, which I'll post in my artlog later...

Nakor
15-09-2009, 22:56
i agree with the principal of the OP argument. here are my thoughts.


(Rule of cool,

1. So, We have the big guys in armor. Usually portrayed charging at the enemy, yelling "FOR THE EMPEROR!!!" at the top of their lungs, swinging a chainsword.

2. I see them as a far more "skilled"

3. If you fall into an Space marine ambush, you'll find that

4. Also, I see them out of armor quite a lot.

5. Now, the armor.

6. And if the worst comes

7. I feel the same applies to Orks, too. Cut off an arm, he goes down. But you'd better chop off the head while you're at it too, or one painboy visit later...

8. And it doesn't leave a big line of glowing plasma leading to your firing position.

9. The bolter is the main weapon for a reason.

10. And I like these marines better. What's actually heroic about a space marine in plot armor? The heroes that are actually vulnerable, those are the real heroes.

1. Fear comes to mind for this tactic. nothing more serious than a rhino (animal nor vehicle) charging your ass. its also effecting vs lass physical opponents, and a charge can tip the odds vs equal or stronger opponents especially coupled with 100 years of space-muai-thai-with-a-chainsaw-and-magic-super-full-plate-armor experience.

2. thats an entirely different story when the marines are running at a position with more than just 1 man defending it. you got hundreds of guys holed up waiting (assuming they are all on alert) pretty hard to sneak up on them in a prepared defensive position from the front. but yes i do see SMs using more than just blarg!-barbarian charges (but they do have their place)

3. i havent read any 40k books but my understanding was that how you explained it was exactly how a SM ambush went down already.

4.ive always thought this was a neat idea too.

5. entirely depends on what the armor is shot with but then keepin mind that this crap is still solid metal. 2-3 high powered shots (e.g.bolter) in the same spot any hes got a problem but one hole has little effect on the integrity of plate around it. with your lasgun example, again got to hit the same spot everytime but a single power pack should punch through. however thats not going to happen unless the SM stands still and has the whole enemy squad practice shooting his aquila.

6. again isnt this already how it is?

7. sure if the ork doesnt bleed out first.

8. bolters fire rockets. rockets burn fuel as they travel. burning equals light. so bolts are effectively tracer rounds.

9. yes it is the main weapon so whats the problem?

10. fighting like Heracles, bringing the fight right into the enemy face and out the back of his skull with you bare hands, shrugging off blows that would kill a normal man.

thats classic heroics there man. from as far back as humans go thats been one of the archetypes men have aspired to be. even sports like rugby, american foot ball, ice hocky all follow this form. hardcore is badass.

Argastes
15-09-2009, 23:05
8. bolters fire rockets. rockets burn fuel as they travel. burning equals light. so bolts are effectively tracer rounds.

This may be true in movies and video games, but if you look at real-life rockets and missiles, many of them produce no visible exhaust plume in daylight, and very little (or sometimes none) even at night. Anything that's rocket-propelled does not automatically produce a visible exhaust flame and, conveniently, it's smaller rockets that tend to be less likely to have a visible exhaust flame (and a bolter round is only about the size of your thumb). In fact, in real life, a visible exhaust flame is something that the guys designing the system may want to minimize or eliminate for various reasons. So it's entirely plausible that bolter shells have no visible exhaust flame, or that it's minimal enough that it's only visible in low-light conditions.

IncrediSteve
16-09-2009, 00:28
A blade cuts the carotid artery, the marine is in serious trouble. But, while a cut carotid means loss of consciousness in seconds and death soon after for a guardsman, the marine is not automatically lost. Of course, consciousness is lost in a matter of seconds, but, the Sus-an membrane (I hope I remember that correctly, the one that allows the coma state?) means the brain does not automatically die. The marine is down and out of the fight - but if someone manages to slow down the bleeding enough for the wound to close, the marine will live. A few transfusions, a short rest, and the marine is back in action. The guardsman is lost forever.

A marine also has hyper-active clotting in his bloodstream. A second heart as well. He may lose enough blood to pass out for a time, but unless a large chunk was blown out of him he would heal himself eventually.

Otherwise, aside from frequently operating out of power armor [that's what Scouts are for!], everything you mentioned is entirely within the scope of normal 40k. It is entirely possible anything and everything we read in the short stories and Black Library is just Imperial Propaganda. The stories in the codexes are just tiny hors d'œuvres of the 41st millennium. Heroic last stands and charges are appealing as far as excitement and "awesomeness" are concerned, so that's what they write about to sell us, but that is not what marines do all the time in every battle.


So it's entirely plausible that bolter shells have no visible exhaust flame, or that it's minimal enough that it's only visible in low-light conditions.

Don't forget the marine's enhanced senses, vision, and autosense suite. They may be able to see the thin contrail anyway, even when others can't, making it a sort of one-way tracer round.

Lord_Crull
16-09-2009, 00:34
1. Fear comes to mind for this tactic. nothing more serious than a rhino (animal nor vehicle) charging your ass. its also effecting vs lass physical opponents, and a charge can tip the odds vs equal or stronger opponents especially coupled with 100 years of space-muai-thai-with-a-chainsaw-and-magic-super-full-plate-armor experience.


That fairs poorly when fighting any non-IG opponet though, orks and tyranids while probably charge screaming right back. Eldar will pull of ninja stuff.

terribletrygon
16-09-2009, 01:34
Space Marines are terror troops. They are made to be seen.

Philip S
16-09-2009, 01:39
8. bolters fire rockets. rockets burn fuel as they travel. burning equals light. so bolts are effectively tracer rounds.
Or not - gyrojets leave no trace, and many think Bolters are a type of gyrojet.

Philip

Argastes
16-09-2009, 02:35
Space Marines are terror troops. They are made to be seen.

This sounds appealing at first but it doesn't hold up. Being seen, in order to incite terror, may work fine against rebellious PDF troops but against any of the numerous terrible foes that the Marines usually face, it's not going to do any good. Chaos Marines, Orks, Tyranids, Necrons, Aspect Warriors, etc. are not going to be terrified by Marines who stand tall and charge headlong into battle, they are just going to be thankful for the easy and tightly-packed targets. Against anyone other than normal human rebels, the Marines would need to make use of realistic infantry tactics if they are to have any chance. Orks are arguably the most common foe that Marines fight, and they sure aren't going to run away quailing at the sight of Marines charging them.

IncrediSteve
16-09-2009, 02:42
Space Marines are terror troops. They are made to be seen.

I concur.

Let's say you're a hardened veteran. You've fought in war for years, seen friends and comrades die to gunfire dozens of times. It doesn't phase you any more. Your squad ducks to avoid shrapnel from a frag grenade going off by your cover, and you raise back up to see the silhouette of an 8ft, solid armor half-ton behemoth vaulting down into your firepit, eyes glowing red, screaming in name of the false god of your enemy, crushing your CO's skull to a pulp with a single blow, wielding a .75mm rapid firing rocket launcher in a single hand, simultaneously causing another comrade to explode at point blank. He's not going to sit still and let you come to your senses and try to find a weakpoint. He's slaughtering you.

Lord Malice
16-09-2009, 02:48
The other thing to bear in mind is that there are only one million marines. They should be incredibly rare sights on the battlefield.

If you wanted to make marines more realistic then really the first thing to do is not change how they work in the background but make their in-game appearances match their background. The problem is that the game sets up roughly equal armies which have no relationship to their in-universe existence.

If marines were portrayed on the table-top the same way they are in the background you'd see marine armies consisting of one squad, usually tactical. They'd be as hard as nails (think of the Ultramarines in Winter Assault), moving quickly, taking out important targets and never having stand up fights; the marine player would start off with a rhino say, drive strait at his opponent's HQ, unload a squad of marines and tear them apart, blowing up a tank or two and then racing off for the next important attack.

I certainly think it would be doable but all the armies would have to be overhauled and their interactions with each other; marines fighting alongside guard for example. However, this wouldn't exactly help sell armies of models which is why we have such a disparity between what the armies should be and how they actually work on the table-top.

EDIT


I concur.

Let's say you're a hardened veteran. You've fought in war for years, seen friends and comrades die to gunfire dozens of times. It doesn't phase you any more. Your squad ducks to avoid shrapnel from a frag grenade going off by your cover, and you raise back up to see the silhouette of an 8ft, solid armor half-ton behemoth vaulting down into your firepit, eyes glowing red, screaming in name of the false god of your enemy, crushing your CO's skull to a pulp with a single blow, wielding a .75mm rapid firing rocket launcher in a single hand, simultaneously causing another comrade to explode at point blank. He's not going to sit still and let you come to your senses and try to find a weakpoint. He's slaughtering you.

Awesome. Also:

"Camouflage is the colour of fear... I have no need to hide from my foes... I have no fear of death. My colours I wear openly, they proclaim louder than any words, "I am proud to live - I am proud to die".

Philip S
16-09-2009, 02:54
This sounds appealing at first but it doesn't hold up. Being seen, in order to incite terror, may work fine against rebellious PDF troops but against any of the numerous terrible foes that the Marines usually face, it's not going to do any good. Chaos Marines, Orks, Tyranids, Necrons, Aspect Warriors, etc. are not going to be terrified by Marines who stand tall and charge headlong into battle, they are just going to be thankful for the easy and tightly-packed targets. Against anyone other than normal human rebels, the Marines would need to make use of realistic infantry tactics if they are to have any chance. Orks are arguably the most common foe that Marines fight, and they sure aren't going to run away quailing at the sight of Marines charging them.
See - now this is why I like to define the enviroment the marines will be in if 'realistic'.

I have marines fighting close urban warfare inside artificial bio-dome habitants using modal bolts and facing mostly small arms fire (to which I imagine they are immune) In this enviroment, the one I imagine Hives are really like, the marines can be terror troops - but it is very restricted.

Once outside the depths of hives I believe they are vulnerable, and I would prefer they have full adaptive camouflage where the upper layer of the suit can change colour to match their surroundings, and maybe even holographic tech to make a virtual 'Predator' cloaking device.

I am not sure a marine could stand up to heavy weapons like repeated hits from 25mm bushmaster cannon, so staying out of view it a good idea. Once they close with the enemy and engage at point blank range, they 'flash' into Chapter colours. This would have the effect of making the marine seem like they pop out of nowhere, and once in the thick of it the enemy would have to fire on their own (and the marines have a better chance of survival, and can switch back to cloak once the enemies 'friendly fire' wipes out their meat shield). I would imagine the marines see this camo as being more to allow them to close with those who would run from their awesome presence and evade judgement rather than 'hiding'.

In this light marine can be 'terror troops' but it's really 'canon' as the stories would have you believe - but it does retain the image in some respects.

I hand wave the discrepancies with the official background away as being the 'exception to the norm'. Marines probably win all the time, and it's only those expectational times when they are tested that make a good story. All BL novels and GW colour text is therefore 'the exception'.

It seems reasonable considering the size of the Imperium, GW barly covers less than 0.001% of worlds...

Philip

Argastes
16-09-2009, 04:01
I am not sure a marine could stand up to heavy weapons like repeated hits from 25mm bushmaster cannon,

I would say that they definitely can't. Small arms fire and shell fragments, definitely. HMG fire, to a limited extent; it's definitely something they'll want to avoid even if their armor can be expected to take a couple hits from it. A dedicated anti-armor weapon like an M242, no way. M919 (the DU APFSDS round for the M242) is capable of penetrating up to 75mm RHA at 1000 meters. That's three inches of a quite tough steel alloy and obviously it can penetrate even more at shorter ranges. Marines, IMO, would be toast against that. It was specifically designed to shoot at Soviet tanks along with softer-skinned targets like BMPs and unarmored vehicles (admittedly it is only effective against the side armor of Soviet MBTs, but penetrating a T-80 turret from the side is nothing to sneeze at).

I agree with your analysis and I really like the idea of Marine power armor having a mimetic camouflage layer on it's surface that can blend in with their surroundings but revert to chapter heraldry if they want to "show their colors" in a melee. Very well thought out. I generally accept 40K fluff at face value even when it's silly (I just grouse about it's silliness at the same time), but if I was into reimagining 40K with more realism while trying to keep some of it's 'style', that would definitely be something I'd incorporate.

Condottiere
16-09-2009, 05:48
Since Marine chapters detach elements to form Task Groups, what they need is a separate HQ unit that coordinates them. They probably do need a sizable combat support contingent to let them get on with what they do best, decapitation strikes.

eyescrossed
16-09-2009, 06:45
Read the first and second HH books, and you'll see the tactics they use ;)

Nakor
16-09-2009, 09:36
oh boy i tried readin a HH book but it was more than half (well seemed to me that way) about journalists and some guy moping that he had run out of 'real' paper pads. snore.


if you look at real-life rockets and missiles, many of them produce no visible exhaust plume


i stand corrected.

still vs the likes of thermal vision, zing-a-ling-ching i can see you. (but not everyone can see in thermal)

@SM terror tactics

remember that the races available to play with arent the only race out there that SMs have or will fight. plenty of the forces facing SMs wont like the sight of them trolluping right up the guts of their field of fire unharmed. and as for those that dont fear it and are charging back, well tbh id rather be charging too than be standing still. again the caveat of choosing the right tactic for the right situation.

Condottiere
16-09-2009, 09:51
Chaos uses terror tactics.

Space Marines use Shock and Awe.

Philip S
16-09-2009, 13:12
I would say that they definitely can't. Small arms fire and shell fragments, definitely. HMG fire, to a limited extent; it's definitely something they'll want to avoid even if their armor can be expected to take a couple hits from it. A dedicated anti-armor weapon like an M242, no way. M919 (the DU APFSDS round for the M242) is capable of penetrating up to 75mm RHA at 1000 meters. That's three inches of a quite tough steel alloy and obviously it can penetrate even more at shorter ranges. Marines, IMO, would be toast against that. It was specifically designed to shoot at Soviet tanks along with softer-skinned targets like BMPs and unarmored vehicles (admittedly it is only effective against the side armor of Soviet MBTs, but penetrating a T-80 turret from the side is nothing to sneeze at).
This all sounds good to me.

In my interpretation I did go with 4" 'ceraform' shoulder armour (but that has more to do with their MO). I like to think of the marines as a one man APC/ IFV that can go into STC buildings. However they would still not be able to stand up to powerful weapons. I did add in 'electric armour' to deal with HEAT rounds, but there is a limit to the punishment they can take.


I agree with your analysis and I really like the idea of Marine power armor having a mimetic camouflage layer on it's surface that can blend in with their surroundings but revert to chapter heraldry if they want to "show their colors" in a melee. Very well thought out. I generally accept 40K fluff at face value even when it's silly (I just grouse about it's silliness at the same time), but if I was into reimagining 40K with more realism while trying to keep some of it's 'style', that would definitely be something I'd incorporate.
Cool.

The camouflage is complimented by the Bolter with 'modal' bolts (here's my take (http://www.philipsibbering.com/WH40KRP/40K__10_Bolter.shtml#BoltModes)).

This allows a marine to lay down a mass of mode 2 bolts (airburst) to take out great swaths of lightly armoured troops, yet switch to mode 1 (HEAT) to punch through most armours. Switching is instant and controlled by the auto-sense interface.

The fun bit is that I've designed it so marines are not that greatest against other marines at long range - the air-burst has minimal effect, and the HEAT is defeated by the 'electric armour' layer. Therefore when in combat with another marine they have to close, and use the Bolter as a 'stunner' to try and get the advantage as they close. The stunning has a secondary effect of 'clearing the stage' of lesser minions backing up a marine - be they Imperial Guard or Chaos cultists (sets the stage for the show down!).

The Bolter is still lethal to regular humans.

It seems to me a reasonable explanation of some of the quirks of marine behaviour. Why they like to close (being getting into the middle of lesser troops to cause mayhem, or other marines), why they have bright armour, and why they are feared by those who meet them.

I much prefer a 'smart' marine, as to me intelligence is far more threatening that brawn. I imagine the marine variant I have put forwards would give any modern troops a run for their money - not because they are heroic abominations, but because they have good gear and know how to use it, and are aware of their limitations.

I would imagine that marines on a world like ours are more like snipers or designated marksmen, but can get really close thanks to their active camo, and if caught short they armour will probably save them (and the fact they are probably able to 'run' through the walls of most building and flank (a reason for the heavy shoulder pads ;))). It would be a nightmare fighting them as they would never be where you thought they would be, they have a ton of firepower, and keep 'disappearing'.

Marines out in the open play 'cat and mouse', but that cat like to turn into a rabid dog now and again when it meets resistance :chrome:

Inside they are like a bull in a china shop, and their auto-sense and armour probably saves them from most booby traps (and if in doubt pump in a few mode 2 and crash through a wall - LOL).

Philip

Iuris
16-09-2009, 14:01
As promised, I uploaded the piccies that were inspired while writing this wall of text. The Dakka denial marine one may be worth a look, at least.

Anyway:

Chaos uses terror tactics.

Space Marines use Shock and Awe.
Very... well put.


About heavy weapons, I'm not quite sure everyone here is aware of what different real life weapons can do and what they are meant to be used against.

5.56 and 7.62 assault rifles and sniper rifles are meant for anti-personnel use. the .50 caliber machine guns and sniper rifles (aka. anti-materiel rifles) are meant to engage bigger targets - light vehicles (jeeps, trucks, helicopters and planes on the ground, etc.). Even infantry fighting vehicles and armored transports should at least be worried, with only tanks really immune.

A size comparison of the actual cartridge is useful as an illustration:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Rifle_cartridge_comparison_w_scale.png

Müller
16-09-2009, 14:19
now I haven't read the entire thread, so don't fry me if someone already brought it up but before we even start going at how marines actually fight lets look at the bolter... surely a weapon like that should be accurate at a far longer range than maybe 300ft which is the approximate lenght of usage it has in the game ;) (this applies to pretty much all other weapons as well)

Argastes
16-09-2009, 14:40
Funny you guys should bring this up, because I'm in the middle of writing up a fairly in-depth realistic analysis of a boltgun's performance. I'll post it (or host it somewhere and link to it, since it's quite long) once it's done

Muller: Depends what you mean by "accurate", but generally, yes. The effective range will of course depend on the sights or fire control arrangements, the operating principle of the weapon (open-bolt vs. closed-bolt, etc.), the inherent accuracy of the projectiles (i.e. the degree to which they deviate from the theoretically perfect line of fire while in flight), and of course on the target; many people fail to appreciate that weapons don't have a single clear-cut "effective range", but rather may have one effective range against individual humans, another against larger point targets such as vehicles, and yet another against area targets. But yes, boltguns would have an effective range against personnel targets of at least a couple hundred meters, rather than the ~50-75 meters (24" at a scale where one inch is two meters or a bit more) that their tabletop rules imply. My analysis goes into more detail on this, so check it out when I post it.

Iuris
16-09-2009, 15:10
Nice functionalities, Phillip, but why so much high tech? I mean, it is cool, but it's not field reparable and not expendable given the 40k tech levels.


This allows a marine to lay down a mass of mode 2 bolts (airburst) to take out great swaths of lightly armoured troops, yet switch to mode 1 (HEAT) to punch through most armours. Switching is instant and controlled by the auto-sense interface.

I'd go for a budget solution and instead of an MIU selector go for a fire selector switch and an additional boltgun magazine - that would do for the penetrative+frag airburst system. Or maybe a loading port that allows manually loading a specialized round at any time.


mimetic camouflage layer

I really don't like that one. It would take laboratory environments to repair such a layer. Why not go for a simple Ghillie style overcoat that can be made cheaply, adapt to the environment at hand, and be quite sacrificeable? Hell, a marine that takes a few hits only has to tear off some strips of a dead enemy's uniforn to replace missing patches. Also, some dramatic reveals could be possible, with marines tearing off the cloaks to reveal shining heraldry :)


I did add in 'electric armour' to deal with HEAT rounds, but there is a limit to the punishment they can take.

I'd sooner expect a composite that uses its thickness to absorb enemy strike's energy by being destroyed. More like the Chobham or passive spaced armor. An impact by a HEAT warhead leaves a big hole - but nothing actually comes through the armor.


The Bolter is still lethal to regular humans.

Yup. I expect the effects would be best described as "chunky"...


I much prefer a 'smart' marine, as to me intelligence is far more threatening that brawn. I imagine the marine variant I have put forwards would give any modern troops a run for their money - not because they are heroic abominations, but because they have good gear and know how to use it, and are aware of their limitations.

Ah, the modern army vs. space marines. I have given that some thought, and these were my conclusions:
-current armies are equipped with weapons adapted to killing humans. As such, they would be of low use against a marine (burst at short range should still be worrisome, but marines shouldn't let that happen).
-weapons capable of defeating marine armor should exist already, but are not universally deployed. .50 caliber weaponry should really be able to seriously threaten marines, with hits injuring or at least ripping off pauldrons and chest plates (remember, these are anti vehicle weapons). Mass production of anti-materiel rifles would start soon, and HEAT grenades for the standard grenade launchers should be a possible solution.

Philip S
16-09-2009, 16:10
Nice functionalities, Phillip, but why so much high tech? I mean, it is cool, but it's not field reparable and not expendable given the 40k tech levels.
I think GW overplays the 'lost technology' angle, and more appropriate would be the Ad-Mec exerting control over advanced tech as they are a monopoly.


I'd go for a budget solution and instead of an MIU selector go for a fire selector switch
Manual Override.


I really don't like that one. It would take laboratory environments to repair such a layer.
I think it will work with holes blown in it (when the non hole bits). There could even be a robust self-repair system.


I'd sooner expect a composite that uses its thickness to absorb enemy strike's energy by being destroyed. More like the Chobham or passive spaced armor. An impact by a HEAT warhead leaves a big hole - but nothing actually comes through the armor.
Already have that included ;)


Yup. I expect the effects would be best described as "chunky"...
Hell yeah.



Ah, the modern army vs. space marines. I have given that some thought, and these were my conclusions:
-current armies are equipped with weapons adapted to killing humans. As such, they would be of low use against a marine (burst at short range should still be worrisome, but marines shouldn't let that happen).
-weapons capable of defeating marine armor should exist already, but are not universally deployed. .50 caliber weaponry should really be able to seriously threaten marines, with hits injuring or at least ripping off pauldrons and chest plates (remember, these are anti vehicle weapons). Mass production of anti-materiel rifles would start soon, and HEAT grenades for the standard grenade launchers should be a possible solution.
Seems fair.

I have the shoulder pauldrons at 4" composite (coz these puppies are charging through walls and such)

And I class the marine as a one man APC/IFV, and at 4" some of the marines armour is superior.

Time to break out the 20mm chaingun to put them down!

Philip

DarkMatter2
16-09-2009, 16:38
I think, at the end of the day, trying to make 40k realistic is a pointless task.

40k is self consciously antithetical to realism - it is EXPRESSLY not a Trekky universe for gun nuts and military historians.

It evokes shallow, surface level emotions via imagery and appeals to the Rule of Cool.

I don't understand why so many people want to...overrationalize and overintellectualize the 40k universe. It's self defeating.

You have 10,000 Sci-fi universes that range from hard to soft and squishy - why try to take one of the softest and squishiest and turn it hard? Why not just migrate to a "hard" universe that suits your taste? Outside of the craziest of its ROC conceits, 40k is hardly a groundbreaking space opera setting filled with interesting characters and meaningful stories. It is an excuse plot for armies of power armored super warriors and robots and space berserkers to kill each other in.

This entire thread strikes me as a masturbatory attempt to put clothes on the Emperor (not THAT Emperor).

Enjoy 40k for the child's GRIMDARK universe that it is - its shallow and illogical and that is the point. I don't even think you would be going too far to say that its crazy, unrealistic nature is a large portion of the point to begin with.

Iuris
16-09-2009, 16:52
Seems fair.

I have the shoulder pauldrons at 4" composite (coz these puppies are charging through walls and such)

And I class the marine as a one man APC/IFV, and at 4" some of the marines armour is superior.

Time to break out the 20mm chaingun to put them down!

Philip

Yeah, I'd agree. Armor equivalent to an APC - vulnerable to anti vehicle weaponry - but DAMN harder to hit :)

Philip S
16-09-2009, 17:13
I think, at the end of the day, trying to make 40k realistic is a pointless task.
Depends why you are doing it.


40k is self consciously antithetical to realism - it is EXPRESSLY not a Trekky universe for gun nuts and military historians.
I think everyone knows that.


I don't understand why so many people want to...overrationalize and overintellectualize the 40k universe.
Because it's fun? - for some.

I went ahead and rationalised the whole universe, lead link in my sig, and I think it came out more 40K not less, and many have said it really brought home the sheer madness of 40K.

My version was christened 'Philverse' by Kage back in the day (it's been around for a while). As a collection of interlinked concepts it does quite a good job - and is internally consistent. It's quite well known among fandom (the older players). Some like it because you can not hand wave 40K way in a dismissive manner and it brings to light some interesting questions to be discussed. That's reason enough to share it.

I grew up with 40K and 40K has grown up with me. It's the same for many of the old fans, in chatting about ideas and going through the background many concepts are born and developed, and the shape the way you look at 40K.

It's possible to do this because 40K is so 'open', some thinks this a weakness others a strength. There is no canon lore of definitive reference, so it can be all things to all people (fans).

I can take my reality, my scientific understanding, into 40K and it does not bother me at all. To me hard sci-fi can nestle in 40K with no problems, there is no awkwardness of diminishing out the 'grimdark'. I can chat about 40K with gun nuts, scientists, and those who enjoy it as sci-fantasy with no problems at all - and it remains consistent 'Philverse'.

In many instances I argue counter to the direction many a realist is taking - not by attacking their arguments (which are normal very good and well thought out) but by injecting some new ideas and bringing in more technology all with an aim to bringing it back to the image of 40K.

I do not see why such an interpretation would offend you or provoke derision?

We all love 40K!


Yeah, I'd agree. Armor equivalent to an APC - vulnerable to anti vehicle weaponry - but DAMN harder to hit :)
That's the spirit!

Philip

Iuris
16-09-2009, 19:25
Phil, you must have noticed that I believe in a rather low tech 40k. I'd like your thoughts on my logic.

Essentially, my logic is that there are no super materials, no super muscles and similar for one reason: we still have the humans as the lowest common denominator. There is still hand to hand combat in 40k, done by regular humans.

That is a serious limitation - if a human still can do something, the regular armor materials are not invincible. Extremely tough, maybe, but not impervious to all harm. Since most guns leave corpses and not ash piles, we know they are not a 21st century main battle tank gun stuffed into rifle form, but are comparable to regular firearms of today. Small details like that.

It makes for a universe scaled down to man size, and I like that. I find sci-fi that goes beyond rather bland - supefullerene armor to protect against railguns means that one small puncture will mean the pilot gets gurned by his own exhaust and similar.

Argastes
16-09-2009, 19:38
I think, at the end of the day, trying to make 40k realistic is a pointless task.

...

Enjoy 40k for the child's GRIMDARK universe that it is - its shallow and illogical and that is the point. I don't even think you would be going too far to say that its crazy, unrealistic nature is a large portion of the point to begin with.

The OP addressed people like you in the first sentence of the thread. Please don't come into the thread if you have no contribution and all you are going to do is scoff at the concept and accuse it's posters of being "masturbatory". Just find another thread to post in if you don't like it. This thread isn't "everyone share your thoughts on whether 40K should be realistic", it's "those of you who like a realistic 40K, discuss it".

Argastes
16-09-2009, 21:19
Okay, moving past your extreme rudeness (which IS specifically warned against in the forum rules) and the fact that one poster doesn't have to be a mod to ask another poster to stop crapping up a thread with non-contributory posts, I'll try to address your question.

I can't speak for Phil or Iuris or anyone else, but personally, I am not interested in turning 40K into a 'hard' setting. You're right, if I want hardness, I can go read K.S. Robinson or something. I am perfectly fine with all of the fantastic elements in 40K--warp space and everything that comes from it (daemons, FTL travel and communications, psychic powers), the weird aliens, the absurd spaceship designs and war machines, the fact that Imperial infantry tactics are stuck somewhere between the Middle Ages and the 19th century, and all of the other anachronism and craziness. As I said earlier, while I recognize that (for instance) Space Marines probably SHOULD use modern infantry tactics, I'll still take them at face value instead of trying to remake the setting so that it's more realistic. My interest in realism is not in taking the setting's unrealistic elements and changing them, but in taking the poorly-defined mundane details of the setting (like the ballistic performance a boltgun, or exactly what type of laser a lasgun is) and seeing what kind of realistic speculation can be made about them. This is fruitful to me because, firstly, I find that stuff interesting, and secondly, I think it makes the setting more interesting to have some technical realism mixed in with all the weird magic and such. If you don't agree and you want to deliberately keep the setting devoid of any details that make sense, so that it's 100% magic with absolutely no sense even in the mundane little things, that's fine, that's your business. I guess "over"-intellectualization and "over"-rationalization are in the eye of the beholder.

Furthermore, the idea that 40K's "proper" role is nothing more than using the Rule of Cool and imagery to evoke shallow surface emotions is far from absolute truth, it's just your own expectation from the setting. Others will think differently. Please don't try to pretend that you have a monopoly on the true nature of the setting and those who have a different vision are deviating from that truth. Out of curiosity, how long have you been playing 40K? Your attitude towards the setting--that it should be nothing more than an "excuse plot" for the game's armies to kill each other in--sounds very similar to that of more recent hobbyists who missed out on the game's early days.

EDIT: I also don't see what could have possibly lead you to associate Star Trek with hard sci-fi in your original post. It's barely less soft than 40K.

2nd EDIT: Okay, the post this was responding to has been removed by the mods.

Philip S
16-09-2009, 22:06
Phil, you must have noticed that I believe in a rather low tech 40k. I'd like your thoughts on my logic.
You ideas are not that far from mine. It do not mind low tech, the Ecorium designs I came up with to explain 'hives' all use mundane materials and conventional architecture - it would be possible to build it now. The only fantasy element is the fusion generators powering the LEDs that illuminate all the hydroponics. This can easily be swapped out for more convention methods - be it 'old fashions' fission or even renewable 'green' energy.

Thinking about the armour camouflage a bit more; having it pigment based - more like a chameleon - than a screen. Though something like OLED (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OLED) would seem like a good idea and there was talk of 'printing' it, and that means it can be printed onto irregular surfaces (like some buses have full adverts on the back and sides).

The marine's armour could be printed with this stuff and it would probably be quite good visual camouflage but not perfect - they would not be 'invisible' just 'miss-able' if not moving about.

On the other hand an old fashion ghillie suit will do, and if the marines armour can insulate while sniping (power down) they may be hard to spot in Infrared.

In fact marines may see a lot of IR informations thanks to the auto-sense, and humans who think they are camouflaged may be anything but and light up like a Christmas tree.

It's merely an option - if marines are primarily a SWAT like strike force for taking hardened STC installations then they may not even turn the adaptive camouflage on. The may be running around in bright red armour!

Thinking a bit more about IR - maybe marines think camouflage is next to useless as everything is easy to see, and a look out with IR would see them a mile off (I'm sure they produce heat - though I could direct you to my STC thermoelectric cells that convert heat into electricity, and that could partially solve that- but it would not be 100%)

Marine combat doctrine may be very different to ours, because their capabilities are different.

Philip

UselessThing
16-09-2009, 22:14
I dunno. I went through my 'Marines should wear camouflage!' phase quite early on, being a rather humourless sprog.

These days I'm more interested in genre emulation, and making the MOST 40kish 40k there can be.

The oldest, the biggest, the most ornate, the most grimdark it can be.

So Marines have the biggest muscles you can imagine. They are all a thousand years old. Their armour is covered with purity seals and stone carvings, and they are followed around by the most chittering technogargoyles and cybercherubs john blanche could draw. Their weapons are the largest, heaviest swords and most inflatable warhammers possible.

Restraint is boring. I want to see excess.

--

I do think boltguns would look cooler with stocks though. And suspension on a Leman Russ wouldn't go amiss.

Argastes
16-09-2009, 22:29
Thinking a bit more about IR - maybe marines think camouflage is next to useless as everything is easy to see, and a look out with IR would see them a mile off

Surely they would be aware that not all of their foes have the same sensory capabilities as they do? I can't believe Marines are dumb enough that they don't realize their abilities aren't universal, and would fall into "If I can see him than he must see me" thinking.

Philip S
16-09-2009, 22:57
Restraint is boring. I want to see excess
Nothing wrong with that.

I'm suggesting that having the mundane mapped out gives a base and yard stick for the excess. Excess not fun if it is not excessive!


Surely they would be aware that not all of their foes have the same sensory capabilities as they do? I can't believe Marines are dumb enough that they don't realize their abilities aren't universal, and would fall into "If I can see him than he must see me" thinking.
Not how I would frame it, but not that far off -please allow me to explain myself before you rush to judgement;

In a universe of Eldar, Ork, Nids (which all seem to have IR vision) and high tech renegade human armies (of the type the marines would realistically be called in to deal with) that visual spectrum camouflage may not be that effective. It would be nice to have, and I will included it, but I suspect such 'camouflage' is not a magic bullet and may be a bit redundant.

I like the idea that they do have it, and if they see unmasked humans without IR they may give it a try.

I suspect something akin to what you stated but with a tweak "just because the enemy looks like it hasn't got IR doesn't mean they can not see in in IR" Orks would be a case in point, and mutant humans another. Also fancy contacts.

Therefore it may not be quite as you frame it; that the marine assumes that everyone can see in IR because they can - but more the marine does not always know which enemy can, and which can't, see in IR. It's safer from the marine's POV to assume 'they can' when in doubt. Hence lack of reliance of visual spectrum camouflage, and maybe even a lack of reliance of IR suppression.

Marines may go with a simple 'hit it first - hit is fast' in a lot of cases. However if they know for a fact the enemy can not see IR then the armour can change colour in a flash.

Philip

Col. Tartleton
17-09-2009, 23:00
See we need more people with this perspective. 40k on the table can be silly, that's fine by me, but I hate to see fluff suffer due to poorly thought out and poorly written perspectives.

When I imagine marines I divide it into categories that shouldn't be mixed.

Realist and Romantic

Like stories told in our world, things are usually romantic renditions rather than realistic ones.

So while you read of that breach being held by a single marine armed only with a broken beer bottle with wrent open power armor for twelve days and nights before being relieved in a fight against six million well armed shock troops, that's not how it actually works (sorry Calgar, you're still awesome in my eyes...:D)

Instead when marines attack its going to be something that makes the best CGI studio in the world think twice about recreating it for film. Let me set the scene for you (yes there are more marines then a "chapter", a thousand angels of death won't do squat against a city of billions...):

Warhammer 40,000: My Vision of The Noble Space Marine

Imagine a mound rising several miles up into the sky, its pristine and shapely as we zoom towards it. We are over a hundred miles away, its still a clear obstacle distinguishable from the mountain range it is nestled into. It looks smooth, like a hemisphere, but we know otherwise. It is actually a cluster of frighteningly narrow spears rising into the claustrophobic skyline. The sun is setting, and the city is in the growing shadow of the mountain range. It glows faintly from almost a billion lights in view. Everything is hauntingly silent. We are so far away.

The perspective changes to that of a battle barge.

A room a thousand paces deep and two hundred high and wide. This is a thunderhawk loading bay. There are eleven others of the same size on this vessel. It holds three of the craft well spaced out. Each are roughly fifty meters long. They are hovering in place, just inches from the ground on their foot pads, the humming of their anti grav suspension is deafening. The nearly six thousand men in the room are forced to wear ear plugs and many such as loaders wear mouth guards to stop their teeth chattering from the thrumming vibrations across the entire room. They move like ants scurrying about moving cargo to their best ability in an ordered state of chaos. Directors wave bright colored batons as they cannot speak above the roaring of the craft. Systems are rapidly checked by teams of hundreds of men who move with caution and precision to avoid the dangers of the craft. The room is bathed in a crimson hue as men and loading equipment frantically equip the massive craft.

Time slows as the time to launch nears and the minutes trickle forward. And then they arrive.

A door leading to an internal armory slides open slowly. As the crack widens white light pours out. Then a black shape. It is followed by ten more black vehicles. Rhino armored vehicles quickly maneuver into position beside the thunderhawks. Their rear ramps deploy and ten black armored infantry emerge from each Rhino. Massive in stature and covered in black gleaming plate their red eye lenses dull in the red aura of the room. Upon their backs twin jets point towards the ground. Their hands hold chunky inelegant weapons designed to stand up to the same level of punishment as their armor, and more than any gun should sensibly have to. They file into the Thunderhawks in good order, officers and specialists marked with simple symbols. The crewmen are in awe of these "Fighting Astartes" and do their best to stay out of their way. The vehicles finish loading quickly, and it as soon as they are done fueling the massive exodus begins.

The thousands of workers begin making an orderly exit from the room, the rhinos joining them in their retreat. As they complete their exodus, purple flame emerges from the aft end of the Thunderhawk's thrusters. The air is rapidly drawn from the room using massive air ducts until the enormous room is a vacuum. Then the bulkhead of the ship begins to slide open exposing the room to open space. Then launch: the massive thrusters hurl the vehicles from their place into the void. They soon form one of twelve strike wings advancing rapidly towards the planet below...

In other quarters of the ship energy surges through bundles of cables a dozen meters in thickness. These coils channel raw energy from the ships engines into an array of lances.

TBC

UselessThing
18-09-2009, 04:54
a thousand angels of death won't do squat against a city of billions...

I find it more entertaining to ponder just how hard Marines need to be to deserve their reputation in an Imperium of a million worlds.

We're talking full on superheros here - leaping tall buildings with a single rocket boosted bound, throwing cars at helicopters, elbow dropping tanks and generally acting like The Incredible Hulk.

Cause a thosand Hulks can take down a city no problem...

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 10:32
I find it more entertaining to ponder just how hard Marines need to be to deserve their reputation in an Imperium of a million worlds.

We're talking full on superheros here - leaping tall buildings with a single rocket boosted bound, throwing cars at helicopters, elbow dropping tanks and generally acting like The Incredible Hulk.

Cause a thosand Hulks can take down a city no problem...

No they are not, Marines are nowhere near the Hulk's level, (This comes from a dedicated comic book fan) nor do they do anything even remotely like you describe in any codex or novel I have ever read.

Daver X
18-09-2009, 13:29
i think you are forgetting the most of you are underrating space marine armour- it is MUCH better out of the game but to my real point.

marines wouldn't be going against thousands of men, they would be either launching a surgical strike against the enemy hq or other important targets before they get swarmed by enemy re-inforcements, leading to why they seem to be charging forward so often.
also in most 40k battles, small invasion forces are only really necassary when the enemy has only its best troops left hiding in sheilded or what ever other mystical protection they have after all troop concentrations and cities have been reduced to several glassy and gaseous substances from orbit. Smaller concentrations around important targets would be hit by scouts using the chapter masters orbital bombardment tactic

UselessThing
18-09-2009, 14:46
nor do they do anything even remotely like you describe in any codex or novel I have ever read.

They have a reasonable stab in Brothers of the Snake, killing a 300' wyrm with a single cast of a harpoon.

And we have the new Space Marine video game, with Marines scattering hundreds of orks with every sweep of a thunderhammer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvjICeeoPAU

Anyway, they need the power to deserve their reputation.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 15:03
They have a reasonable stab in Brothers of the Snake, killing a 300' wyrm with a single cast of a harpoon.


Putting aside the fact that Brothers of the Snake was a peice of crap novel. We have other space marines depicted as far less stronger. Ragnar sturggles to lift off a sealed tank hatch and Learchus struggles to lift a truck.

Plus the feat of killing a 300' wyrm still does not compare to the Hulk's feats in the comics.



And we have the new Space Marine video game, with Marines scattering hundreds of orks with every sweep of a thunderhammer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvjICeeoPAU


That is not hundreds, you are exaggerating heavily.



Anyway, they need the power to deserve their reputation.

No they do not, the last thing marines need is more OTT hype.

malika
18-09-2009, 15:20
Hey Phil...I think we found some people who might be interested in SITA. ;)

Argastes
18-09-2009, 15:29
Lord_Crull, Useless Thing, you guys obviously have totally opposite and irreconcilable opinions about what Space Marines should be like, there is no point continuing to discuss it. Neither of you is ever going to convince the other, you are just going to keep saying "This is how space marines should be", "No it isn't, that way is dumb, THIS is how space marines should be", "Nu-uh THAT way is the dumb way, mine is the good way", forever. For the record, I agree with Lord_Crull, but it's pointless to argue over, you are just going to keep going back and forth, quoting each others posts and responding with statements of disagreement. It's not like either of you can cite fluff evidence to prove your case, because you are not arguing over what space marines actually are like in the fluff, but rather over what you think they should be like. Totally unresolvable. Agree to disagree.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 15:35
Lord_Crull, Useless Thing, you guys obviously have totally opposite and irreconcilable opinions about what Space Marines should be like, there is no point continuing to discuss it. Neither of you is ever going to convince the other, you are just going to keep saying "This is how space marines should be", "No it isn't, that way is dumb, THIS is how space marines should be", "Nu-uh THAT way is the dumb way, mine is the good way", forever. For the record, I agree with Lord_Crull, but it's pointless to argue over, you are just going to keep going back and forth, quoting each others posts and responding with statements of disagreement. It's not like either of you can cite fluff evidence to prove your case, because you are not arguing over what space marines actually are like in the fluff, but rather over what you think they should be like. Totally unresolvable. Agree to disagree.

I would be inclined to agree, if I see marines tossing around battle tanks barehanded, lifting mountains, and smacking around titan-sized mecha with ease.

But I don't

Argastes
18-09-2009, 15:40
I would be inclined to agree, if I see marines tossing around battle tanks barehanded, lifting mountains, and smacking around titan-sized mecha with ease.

But I don't

Ummm I repeat: It would be possible for you to cite fluff in support of your case if you guys were arguing over how Space Marines are portrayed in the fluff, but you are arguing over how Space Marines SHOULD be portrayed in the fluff. The guy you are arguing against is saying that Space Marines SHOULD be portrayed in this way to justify their reputation, not that they already are portrayed in this way.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 16:23
Ummm I repeat: It would be possible for you to cite fluff in support of your case if you guys were arguing over how Space Marines are portrayed in the fluff, but you are arguing over how Space Marines SHOULD be portrayed in the fluff. The guy you are arguing against is saying that Space Marines SHOULD be portrayed in this way to justify their reputation, not that they already are portrayed in this way.

Then that's my entire point.

It's rather annoying, to see the Hulk, one of the my favourite Marvel characters, be lowered to the level of a mere space marine.

UselessThing
18-09-2009, 16:43
The guy you are arguing against is saying that Space Marines SHOULD be portrayed in this way to justify their reputation, not that they already are portrayed in this way.

Yeah. I'd argue that a lot of what is written about Marines makes a lot more sense if they are superheros. And I think its more fun to give in to this and make them superheros than to add more Marines or whatever.


It's rather annoying, to see the Hulk, one of the my favourite Marvel characters, be lowered to the level of a mere space marine.

So wouldn't you like your Space Marines to be as awesome as the Hulk? Cause they could be. The fluff largely assumes they are anyway. So why not run with it?

Argastes
18-09-2009, 16:45
So wouldn't you like your Space Marines to be as awesome as the Hulk? Cause they could be. The fluff largely assumes they are anyway. So why not run with it?

Umm no. You may WISH that the fluff portrayed Marines are being "as awesome as the hulk", and you may think that it SHOULD portray them as being that awesome in order to justify their reputation, but nevertheless fluff clearly does not portray them that way.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 17:28
So wouldn't you like your Space Marines to be as awesome as the Hulk? Cause they could be. The fluff largely assumes they are anyway. So why not run with it?


First of all no, they don't, Marines die and get killed. Read Imperial armor Taros. A entire battle company get's pinned down and mauled by a pair of Tau hunter cadres. Marines in certain peices of fluff do not win because they charge in bolter blazing. Marines in those peices of fluff do not do retarded acts like killing thousands of dark eldar, or killing tens of thousands or orks.

In IA V the marines lost 200 battle brothers after fighting several thousand PDF soldiers and a few dozen chaos marines

I can go on.

There are multiple examples avalible to marines being portrayed far weaker than how you make it to be.

Second of all, I hate the superhero He-man fluff that some of the more extreme examples of the marine fluff. I think it's stupid and borning. I want my marines to win because of good tactics and training, not charging in mindlessly, bolter blazing, winning only due to plot armor.

I want my marines to be more restrained like those in the IA. I want them to have a certain degree of realism, as portrayed there.

Do you know what a Boring Invincible Hero is?

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BoringInvincibleHero

In short the latter superhero mairnes are like that. Boring as hell for me and extremely childish and stupid.


Umm no. You may WISH that the fluff portrayed Marines are being "as awesome as the hulk", and you may think that it SHOULD portray them as being that awesome in order to justify their reputation, but nevertheless fluff clearly does not portray them that way.

Exactly

Col. Tartleton
18-09-2009, 20:10
Lord Crull is correct.

A marine should never be described as more powerful than a tank. They are more useful than a tank, and in my mind weaker than a tank (I see marines at about APC level in terms of offensive and defensive capabilities on paper without factoring in the smaller profile and enhanced mobility and capabilities.

That is the upper end of what a marine should be seen as. It isn't however the upper end of what a marine is nessacarily capable of. A marine is designed to be the key in the ignition of a larger war effort. They perform small important acts that in return create much larger effects.

On the other hand, they should never be portrayed as human. That's a simple mistake to make. They are not human mentally, nor physically. They at least twice as powerful as the most elite person in a field conductive to war.

For example, given a proper rifle with a scope they can accurately get a kill on a moving man at two thousand meters consistantly. There are a lot of(well, some) snipers in the world that can hit a fixed target at a thousand meters reliably. A marine is that much better. Given a more powerful rifle and an even better scope, that shot can be delivered by a soldier like Telion from a few miles away. Not only will they be dead before they hear the gunshot, they may never hear the gunshot. The thing to remember however, is that Telion will continue to take these shots all day. Even if he gets a near miss he gets his kill, bolters explode violently. With a bolter hit its impossible to tell which direction the sniper fired from because the reciever of the wound is missing their torso.

Marines can squat hundreds of pounds out of armor and thousands in it. They can raise car sized vehicles over their head and walk, how else could they carry a wounded comrade who probably weighs one to two tons.

But can they hold up an airplane? A building? A mountain? No.

Leave the muscle magic to Superman. Astartes get bolters...

Argastes
18-09-2009, 20:24
For example, given a proper rifle with a scope they can accurately get a kill on a moving man at two thousand meters consistantly. There are a lot of(well, some) snipers in the world that can hit a fixed target at a thousand meters reliably. A marine is that much better. Given a more powerful rifle and an even better scope, that shot can be delivered by a soldier like Telion from a few miles away.

Isn't this a bit of an oversimplification? A very talented human marksman is also capable of hitting a target at theoretically any range, up to and including "a few miles", if their weapon and optics have what it takes. I don't doubt that Marines are extremely good marksman, but it seems to me that couching it in such terms--"A marine can hit X target at X range with the proper weapon"--is a bit meaningless. The "proper weapon" part is kind of a magic clause.

UselessThing
18-09-2009, 20:44
Second of all, I hate the superhero He-man fluff that some of the more extreme examples of the marine fluff. I think it's stupid and borning.

Well, you say you like The Hulk, so you must see the attraction.

His strength, after all, is limited only by his rage.

Like I say, I find it more entertaining to have Marines who can actually do what their role in the fluff demands.

So when a company of Marines arrives on a world where a billion guardsmen are battling a billion Orks, people sit up and take notice.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 22:16
Well, you say you like The Hulk, so you must see the attraction.

His strength, after all, is limited only by his rage.


No, please do not presume to know my tastes.

I like Hulk, not for his strength, but for the dynamic between Bruce Banner and the Hulk persona, and the psychological and moral struggles that are involved in it.

The Hulk being strong is fine, since he is a hero. He faces enemies that are strong as him, or have other superpowers.

Space marines are soldiers, they have been beaten and killed before. Even Guardsmen can get lucky and kill marines, read Gaunt's ghosts. If they are overpowered to a ridiculous degree then there is no sort of excitment at all to see them fight.

Those are two different settings.



Like I say, I find it more entertaining to have Marines who can actually do what their role in the fluff demands.

So when a company of Marines arrives on a world where a billion guardsmen are battling a billion Orks, people sit up and take notice.

Except they don't do that much in the big picture. Look at the 3rd war for Armedgeddon, 20+ chapter eventually arrived, and they ddi not change the course of the war.

Look at Seige of Vraks 500 Dark Angels arrived, adn ultimately where unable to do anythign buy accomplish a single objective.

IV6, same planet, a single company of marines held a breach and allowed the Guard to gain a major victory, but is was made clear that a single company was unable to take the planet on their own, or do anything but affect that single threatre.

UselessThing
18-09-2009, 22:26
Except they don't do that much in the big picture.

Thats not very cool. Wouldn't it be more fun if they did?

I mean, no one want to play a side show.

Argastes
18-09-2009, 22:46
Thats not very cool. Wouldn't it be more fun if they did?

I mean, no one want to play a side show.

Okay, again, now you are no longer arguing about what the fluff says, but about what you think it should say. Why bother? What are you trying to accomplish? It's obvious that Lord Crull disagrees with your ideas about how to make Marines cooler and more fun; it's obvious that he thinks that they are cooler and more fun when they're more realistic, and thinks that making them more ridiculous would make them less cool and less fun, not more cool and more fun. Do you really Lord Crull is going to have some sort of revelation and say "Oh my god UselessThing you just changed my mind totally, I now reverse my position and agree that Marines would be cooler and more if they were more over-the-top, thank you for showing me the light!" The same goes for him trying to argue his ideas, about how realistic marines are cooler, to you.

Arguments about 'what would be cooler' are just utterly pointless. It's totally subjective, people have their own opinions and can't be convinced to change their mind by the other side's argument. It's like arguing whether sunsets or sunrises are prettier. Honestly it's a waste of everyone's time. Just stop.

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 23:00
Thats not very cool. Wouldn't it be more fun if they did?

I mean, no one want to play a side show.

I don't think it that way. I like marines moving as part of a finely honed cog in the war machine, doing their part alongside the Guard, Nacy etc, etc.

Not everyone thinks that Marines should be the overpowered Conan carictures that destroy everything. Not everybody has you opinion. You have no right to force it on others.

I don't like marines doing everything singlehandedly with ease. I think that's boring and stupid.

Argastes
18-09-2009, 23:02
"I think Marines would be cooler if they were like this"

"No you're wrong, they'd be cooler if they were like this."

"No YOU'RE wrong, they'd be cooler if they were my way!"

"Your way is the less cool way, my way is the only way that makes them truly cool!"

"No your way is actually LESS cool than mine, there can be no question that mine is the cooler way!"

Lord_Crull
18-09-2009, 23:22
Due, I'm not the one who is forcing his opinion on others. If UselessThing thinks he wants marines to be like that, then that's fine. It just that anyone who has ever read the Hulk or any peice of marine fluff will know that marines are nowhere near Hulk levels when he get's angry.

Argastes
18-09-2009, 23:39
I'm not saying you are forcing your opinion on anyone. But both of you contribute to the pointlessness when he states his opinion of how marines should be, you respond that they shouldn't be that way, he says that yes they should, you say that no they shouldn't, and so on and so forth. Like I said earlier, I agree with you. But if you respond to him and get into a back-and-forth with him every time he posts "hey guys marines should be like the hulk", it just escalates the stupidity and kills the thread. I recommend ignoring him. It's what I'm going to do, starting now.

Gen.Steiner
19-09-2009, 05:28
With regards to Marines and sniping, specifically:

Yes, human marksmen with the right gear can get one-shot-kills out to very long ranges (I believe the longest sniper kill is over 1km in Afghanistan by a Canadian SpecOps sniper, I may be wrong), but the difference is that a Space Marine can do it consistently and monotonously without having to stop for a break.

He can lock his armour and have no shake from his breathing. He can use cameloline armour coating and blend into his surroundings. He can remain motionless, rigid, and undetectable for as long as he likes; or he can power up and become a mini-IFV storming through your lines, punching people into pink mist with power fists or blowing them apart with mass-reactive rockets.

He is a generalist who also happens to be very good at most things - yes, there will be troops better at specific things, e.g. Vindicare assassins are better snipers than Telion, Mkoll is a better scout than Telion*, Imperial Guard armoured units have more punch than Space Marine ones, etc etc - but only the Marines are capable of doing it all to a very high level.

And at any rate, why are we discussing the Marines, when the Stormtroopers of the Imperial Guard often carry out the same tasks with little or no recognition? Where's the in-depth scientific and tactical/strategic analysis of the Imperial Guard's way of warfare and the Adeptus Munitorium's seperate but massive logistical chain?

And what about the AdMech's Titan Legions, the Skitarii, the Navy, the Navy's Landing Parties, the Arbites, the application of the Lex Imperialis across millions of diverse cultures, the incredibly massive scale of the Imperium both in time and space, the effect that has on everything else (armies numbering in the hundreds of billions or even trillions rather than the thousands, space fleets of transports alone numbering in the hundreds of millions rather than the high tens or low hundreds), and so on and so forth.

Marines are boring.

* Because Telion is teh be5t!!!1!! so I used him for comparison purposes.

Flightleader
19-09-2009, 06:51
To be honest I agree with alot of what is being expressed here. I do feel I should point you gentlemen to the new Space Hulk Novel. This novel really epitomised what a Space Marine is. Armour breaks, assault cannons explodes, weapons jam and field repairs to all of the above by apropriate ad mech. But technology is there, suits that actually gives tactical information and warnings like "reading indicate that your hearts are operating at above normal parameters". Even the way the marines interacted was spot on in my opinion! I highly recommend this novel!

Anyways, I see marines as being specialised, but with the kind of environment they are asked to function in, it's not a problem. Rarely will you see them in the open or in a jungle. Urban warfare/ship/space station actions where their armour actually means something!

But I'll happily stick to my guardsmen on the tabletop thanks. Whilst Marines are a cool concept in theory, the on-table translation is, for me, meerly an exercise in marketing. If I did play marines I'd play a Deathwing force. Small elite and hard hitting and at about the right ratio aswell!

Cheers,

Flightleader

Lord_Crull
19-09-2009, 10:42
And at any rate, why are we discussing the Marines, when the Stormtroopers of the Imperial Guard often carry out the same tasks with little or no recognition? .

Who says they don't get recognition? Where does that say it in the fluff?

Argastes
19-09-2009, 12:37
With regards to Marines and sniping, specifically:

Yes, human marksmen with the right gear can get one-shot-kills out to very long ranges (I believe the longest sniper kill is over 1km in Afghanistan by a Canadian SpecOps sniper, I may be wrong)

"Over 1 km" is a bit of an understatement... it was 2.4 km! Cpl. Rob Furlong is the record holder.

Anyhow, of course I agree that Space Marines can kick more ass than normal human soldiers. What I was saying was that I felt the way you had put it--that they can hit a target at X range if they have the proper weapon--was rather meaningless, since a very talented human marksman could always hit a target at the same range if he had the "proper weapon" too.

canucklhead
19-09-2009, 15:04
And young Furlong was trained by one of my students. It's fun being a modern day Yoda ;)

Well, it gives a man a sense of pride anyway.

Gen.Steiner
19-09-2009, 15:57
Who says they don't get recognition? Where does that say it in the fluff?

Wot? I was talking about this thread, fans, and the player base in general.

Most often, when people talk about the Space Marines, they're touted as the Imperium's special forces.

They're not.

The Stormtroopers are. It's not mentioned very much in the background, either, indeed IIRC pretty much the only place you'll find talk of Stormtroopers partaking in precision strikes on fuel dumps and HQs is in their own background page in the Guard 'dex.

So, instead of having a topic about realism in 40K devoted to teh spass muhreenz, why not include the glory boys?

I mean, they wear ultra-advanced composite armour over clothing that is itself made out of shrapnel-resistant materials, they have the best info-suites next to the Marines (IR, NVG, telescopic sights, comms-kit, etc etc), their weapons are the next most powerful from boltguns (and it's a damn shame they don't allow them to take bolters to be honest), they work closely with the IN to insert from the air, they can stealth, etc etc...

Or what about the humble Adeptus Munitorium serf-driver, a vital cog in the machine of war that is the Guard? Without the Munitorium the Guard would be nothing.

Or the local police forces, from citizen militias with halberds to the carapace-armoured, plasma-toting private enforcers of Lord Helmawr in Necromunda's Hive Primus, they solve the petty crime that the Arbites care nothing for.

And so on and so forth.

Hell, what about the Imperial Guard's seaborne Regiments - the marines that really are? The Guard forces that use boats, submersibles, one-man midget subs, etc etc.

Or how about a quick look at the role of the Ecclesiarchy and just how religious the Imperium as a whole and the Guard in particular is - after all, this is a fighting force which has its religious icon on every single piece of equipment it issues, and which consists entirely of hypno-indoctrinated soldiers raised from birth to believe in some variation of the God-Emperor... how would that affect them? How does that alter how they fight? Would they not approach war differently, knowing that they fight to earn a place at His side?

And so on and so forth.

Marines are boring! Let's talk logistics instead... :evilgrin:

Col. Tartleton
19-09-2009, 18:29
It's not that marines are "boring" its that they're really really contradictory.

Black Library... Games Workshop in general failed them.

The only way we could get a "good" marine book is if a Tom Clancy wrote it.

They're supposed to be super elite soldiers.

They're supposed to be really powerful warriors.

Clearly they aren't sure. Are marines insanely powerful brawlers or a relatively fragile (very relatively) scalpel blade the regularly performs asymetrical warfare and can only be described as the peak of modern soldiery.

They really can't be both. You can't be a genetically enhanced medieval knight in a four inch thick suit of impragnable armor who runs headlong at the enemy waving a razor blade chainsword claymore and an extremely advanced future warrior with powered reactive armor automatic senses that can see in nine different spectrums including smell that can be dropped from orbit, teleported, air assault from thunderhawks, drop pods, or jump packs. Who can pit an ace with any weapon at two thousand meters on the run and tear open the skin of a tank with a well aimed strike of their synthetic diamond boot knife or carve through building walls with their razor edged chain bayonets. Can fight in orbit, underground, underwater, in a desert, on a glacier, in a city, or a jungle with no loss of effectiveness or requirement of time to acclimate.

Well you can... but no one has successfully yet.

canucklhead
19-09-2009, 21:38
The thing is, you can, but only for a very short engagement. This is what the Marines really do. (I can't believe I said that about an imaginary force).

A great view of the role of Space Marines is in the Epic game Final Liberation. You only use them in the very first mission turn, when they drop five squads, a thunderhawk, a squadron of whirlies and one of preds to take the spaceport. From that point on, almost all of the fighting is done with IG. The smurfs only make it back when you finally liberate the astropath monastery and call for reinforcements.

The Marines are psycho aggressive, heavily armoured assault force designed to take a small specific target, and hold it for a short time. In that role, they actually make some sense. Their main firearm is suicidal to use at short range unless you are wearing full anti-fragment armour, they are immensely strong and tough, and carry brutal cc weapons, since it's a given that they will be charging in to actively take a piece of terrain. Even their vehicles make sense in that context. Rather than a lumbering monster of a tank that grinds along with artillery and infantry support, their tanks are either APV's designed to cross hostile ground and dump SM's into close combat, or better yet, fly them in and do the same.

Argastes
19-09-2009, 21:45
Their main firearm is suicidal to use at short range unless you are wearing full anti-fragment armour

What? Not it isn't. Boltgun rounds are fused to explode inside the target, and are only slightly bigger than a 12-ga. shotgun slug. They aren't like modern HE-F grenades, they aren't going to produce a fragment hazard to people near the target (including the shooter at very close range). Remember, SMs are not the only ones who use bolters. IG officers wearing nothing more than a flak vest use them. Underhive gangers with no armor at all use them, presumably at ranges that are often very close.

Lord_Crull
19-09-2009, 21:50
The only way we could get a "good" marine book is if a Tom Clancy wrote it.


But if Tom Clancy wrote the book, the only reason the mairnes would not have defeated the foe by Page 20 would be interfearance by the bleeding-heart liberals who strive to block any kind of military effort at all.;)

canucklhead
19-09-2009, 22:35
What? Not it isn't. Boltgun rounds are fused to explode inside the target, and are only slightly bigger than a 12-ga. shotgun slug. They aren't like modern HE-F grenades, they aren't going to produce a fragment hazard to people near the target (including the shooter at very close range). Remember, SMs are not the only ones who use bolters. IG officers wearing nothing more than a flak vest use them. Underhive gangers with no armor at all use them, presumably at ranges that are often very close.

Assuming you are lucky enough to hit your target, then his rent flesh may very well indeed supress any fragments. considering it's a rapid fire weapon, than a fair number of rounds are going to impact other surfaces, like walls and trees and rocks, at which point I'm going to bet fragment proof body armour is a great thing to be wearing.

oh, and never use a 12 guage shotgun at extremely close range without significant preotection for your face and eyes at least. The backspray of hard tissue like bone can be devastating to the shooter.

Argastes
19-09-2009, 23:08
Assuming you are lucky enough to hit your target, then his rent flesh may very well indeed supress any fragments. considering it's a rapid fire weapon, than a fair number of rounds are going to impact other surfaces, like walls and trees and rocks, at which point I'm going to bet fragment proof body armour is a great thing to be wearing.

I guess this would depend on the type of terrain you're fighting in... even so, from directly behind the round, fragmentation would be minimal. Explosive shells, etc., don't actually produce a perfectly radial burst of fragments in all directions; the fragmentation pattern is less dense directly ahead of, and especially behind, the round.

That said, I suppose it is possible that if shooting at targets at extremely close range, with an wall or tree or something immediately behind them, it is possible--though unlikely--for the shooter to have the bad luck to be struck by a few fragments from his own rounds (or perhaps fragments of wood, stone, etc. from where the round penetrated the wall or tree or whatever and exploded inside it). I don't think this justifies the claim that it's "suicidal" to use a bolter at close range without full body armor, though.


oh, and never use a 12 guage shotgun at extremely close range without significant preotection for your face and eyes at least. The backspray of hard tissue like bone can be devastating to the shooter.

I don't know who told you this but it is an urban legend, like 5.56mm bullets following bone or .50-cal. rounds killing with near-misses. There is no way that buckshot pellets (or even a slug) are going to shatter bone and send fragments of it back out, through the target's tissue, to hit somehow nearby. Buckshot pellets can break bone, but nearly so violently as to have this effect.

Goatboy
19-09-2009, 23:17
In 40K Marines are lead by expert stratagists with centuries of experince, even the basic trooper is skilled in tactics.
However in real life many Marine chapters are lead by people who think a tactic is a kind of mint:p

canucklhead
20-09-2009, 01:33
I'll have to look up the photo of the gent with his face full of bone shards. He decided to coup de grace a severely wounded moose from about 6 inches with a 12 guage and 00 buck. The charge entered the skull and the severe increase in pressure caused a spout of moose brain and skull shards to jet back out of the entry wound, causing severe lacerations to his face.

One in a million for sure, but still more than possible.

Anyway, that wasn't the point. The actual point was that any rapid firing weapon whose standard amunition explodes upon impact is going to necessitate some form of protection from fragments for the firer, if only because we all know that given enough opportunities, weird things happen.

Nakor
20-09-2009, 07:47
One in a million for sure, but still more than possible.



sometimes guns misfire and damage the user so in my imagery of 40k noone actually uses guns, just in case someone gets hurt.


but seriously i point you to plasma guns. is it dangerous?... but does it work? ill take 10.

also to physics, unless your shooting at a right angle to the wall/whatever most of the fragments are going to be angled away from your position anyway.

Condottiere
20-09-2009, 10:09
Marines are shock troopers, they overawe their opponents by their sheer puissance while accomplishing their missions as efficiently as possibly.

Lothlanathorian
20-09-2009, 12:56
Anyway, that wasn't the point. The actual point was that any rapid firing weapon whose standard amunition explodes upon impact is going to necessitate some form of protection from fragments for the firer, if only because we all know that given enough opportunities, weird things happen.

I wouldn't call a bolter 'rapid fire'. I don't think they fire like a fully automatic weapon. I could be wrong, though.

What I know I am not wrong about, though, is that bolt rounds don't explode upon impact, they explode after impact. They hit, penetrate, then go boom. On the inside. So I do agree with you that, at close range, bits of the enemy may be hazardous to your health.

Also, I agree Spaz Muhreenz have been done, done again, then done once more before being done. This topic comes up with frequency and it always devolves into either what it is now or what it is now, but with more arguing over whether Phil is more right or less right. I think talking about logistics would be waaaaay better and much more fun.

Argastes
20-09-2009, 13:13
I think that bolters are actually capable of fully automatic fire, most of the fluff and the art certainly seems to depict them that way. But, I also think that in the hands of an Guard officer or other non-Space-Marine, it would be best to stick to single shots and treat the boltgun more as a flat-shooting semiauto grenade launcher or a short-ranged anti-armor/anti-material rifle. For one thing, boltgun ammo is quite heavy and bulky, so a Guardsman wouldn't carry too much of it--probably one two or three twenty-round magazines at the most. For another thing, depending on the mass of the weapon and the projectile's weight and the muzzle velocity imparted to it by the cartridge's "kicker" charge (i.e. the propellant charge that expels it from the barrel before the rocket motor kicks in), recoil might be rather heavy, meaning that shooting in full auto would be fairly inaccurate for non-Space Marines. A 20-lb. weapon with a 1000-grain projectile leaving the barrel at 750 fps (and I think these are reasonable figures) would kick like a modern 7.62x51mm rifle (~10-12 ft-lbs. recoil energy), and if 7.62x51mm combat rifles like the M14 and FAL are any indiciation, would thus be fine on single shots but rather hard to control on full auto.

Philip S
20-09-2009, 18:14
Hey Phil...I think we found some people who might be interested in SITA. ;)
Maybe, time will tell ;)

Philip

Gen.Steiner
20-09-2009, 20:40
I think talking about logistics would be waaaaay better and much more fun.

Shall I start the thread, or you?

Lothlanathorian
20-09-2009, 21:38
Shall I start the thread, or you?

I thought this thread was for that lolol. And, even if you were to start a thread, it would devolve into Space Marines and how many Serf's they need :p


And, back to the full-auto Bolter; Even though a Marine would be capable of handling it on full-auto, would he use it that way? Firing rounds rapidly into the enemy? Or would he choose his shots and conserve ammunition?

Would you give the IG a full-auto Bolter? Something with expensive, hard to produce ammo and that they can't carry a whole bunch of at a time? Just let them spray and pray until their wrist can'nay take na'more?

I very much don't like the thought of fully automatic weapons that aren't squad special weapons. That, and, I guess it is my personal image of what a Bolter looks, feels, sounds and fires like that is also part of my argument, which is kind of irrelevant.:p

Col. Tartleton
20-09-2009, 21:45
SITA?

I have to ask.

What is it?

On a second point, bolters should be semi auto. Heavy Bolters can be fully auto, but I find even that wasteful. I can understand long bursts, but not full auto. Bolts are supposed to be pretty devastating. Most writing has them blowing a basketball sized hole out of you at least. Some writers pretty much have the torso disintegrating.

I mean a plasma gun leaves ash and boots. Like any good cartoon ray gun.

Lothlanathorian
20-09-2009, 21:49
SITA?

I have to ask.

What is it?

There is a link in the Philverse should be official (http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=221355) thread.

Argastes
20-09-2009, 22:45
On a second point, bolters should be semi auto. Heavy Bolters can be fully auto, but I find even that wasteful. I can understand long bursts, but not full auto. Bolts are supposed to be pretty devastating. Most writing has them blowing a basketball sized hole out of you at least. Some writers pretty much have the torso disintegrating.


And, back to the full-auto Bolter; Even though a Marine would be capable of handling it on full-auto, would he use it that way? Firing rounds rapidly into the enemy? Or would he choose his shots and conserve ammunition?

I agree that even when being fired by a marine who can handle the recoil, bursts would usually be wasteful; for this reason, marines would probably voluntarily stick to single shots most of the time. But I can definitely see situations where bursts (from either a dedicated burst setting that fires X number of rounds per trigger pull, or an actual full-auto setting) would be useful. When firing at distant targets, a short burst increases the probability of a hit (which was the reasoning behind the Army's real-life Project SALVO). And while one shot might be more than enough to reliably take down a human target, there are many targets in the 40K setting that are a good bit tougher--Tyranid warriors, necrons, traitor marines in power armor, and so forth. I could see these being targets you'd want to hit with a burst, to give yourself a better chance of dropping them with one pull of the trigger. I think Space Marines can be expected to have the fire discipline not to use fire bursts when a single shot would be enough, so I don't think there's any problem with giving boltguns (at least the SM versions) a burst and/or full auto setting. Obviously if it does have a full-auto setting, Marines can also be trusted to use that setting to fire controlled bursts of the appropriate length, rather than panicking and emptying their magazines in one long burst (unless this is actually justified.... like if they found themselves face-to-face with a carnifex or something like that).

As for heavy bolters: Col. Tartleton, if you want "long bursts", might as well go ahead and make them full-auto, it would actually probably lead to LESS waste. There's a reason most modern machine-guns are simply fully automatic, rather than having, say, 10-round burst settings or whatever; it's that a fully automatic weapon lets a trained shooter choose the burst length to suit the situation. They can squeeze off short 3-5 round bursts, or go longer as needed (with practice they can often even learn to squeeze off single shots). Heavy bolters might have a feature in the trigger mechanism that limits the length of a burst and cuts it off after a certain number of rounds, but they probably shouldn't have a setting that limits them to bursts of a fixed length.


Would you give the IG a full-auto Bolter? Something with expensive, hard to produce ammo and that they can't carry a whole bunch of at a time? Just let them spray and pray until their wrist can'nay take na'more?

No, I don't think so. As I said, boltgun-armed IG would probably want to treat the weapon like a flat-shooting semiautomatic grenade launcher or a short-ranged AMR, so yeah, it would probably make sense to give them a version with only a "safe-single" fire selector. But there might also be an argument for giving them a version with, say, a three-round burst setting in addition to single shots. Again, it could be useful against some of the big, tough targets that we see in 40K.


I very much don't like the thought of fully automatic weapons that aren't squad special weapons. That, and, I guess it is my personal image of what a Bolter looks, feels, sounds and fires like that is also part of my argument, which is kind of irrelevant.

Like it not, many modern armies put a fully automatic weapon in the hands of each and every infantryman... Of course they also train them (to varying degrees) to practice fire discipline and not just rip through whole magazines in one long burst. Which is the same sort of training that Space Marines would have if their bolters had a full-auto setting.

Gen.Steiner
20-09-2009, 23:08
I very much don't like the thought of fully automatic weapons that aren't squad special weapons.

As Argastes points out:


Like it not, many modern armies put a fully automatic weapon in the hands of each and every infantryman

The Russian Army would respectfully like to disagree. ;)

Argastes
20-09-2009, 23:16
And the Brits, Australians, Israelis, Chinese, Belgians, Brazilians, Germans, Canadians, French, Iranians... in fact the US is rather unusual in not issuing it's troops a rifle with a full auto setting. Most countries do it.

Lothlanathorian
21-09-2009, 00:30
M4. Fully Automatic.



And I remember back in 2nd Ed when Rapid Fire was a Marine special rule and only they could do it with Bolters due to their training and ability to wield them. I play a lot of Gears or War 2 these days and I am in love with the Hammerburst Rifle. It is a single shot every time you pull the trigger, but, the faster you pull that trigger, the faster it fires. I can shoot that mother like none other. A Bolter being like that would also work, imo. A Marine would have the training and ability to carry it and fire it quickly, pulling the trigger rapidly enough to make it almost seem like a full auto or burst fire weapon.

And, if I remember correctly, the M-16 being made into a 3 round burst weapon was a thing of the Vietnam era designed to help conserve ammunition. And, as I said, it is a personal preference and I am aware of that.

Condottiere
21-09-2009, 00:36
Any planet that loses Orbital Space Superiority should consider terms, and if it loses Orbital Space Control over it's primary assets should surrender immediately.

Argastes
21-09-2009, 00:48
M4. Fully Automatic.

Only the M4A1 variant has a fully automatic position on the fire selector, and it's limited to use by special operations unit. The basic M4, which is what 99% of M4 users are issued, has the same safe/single/3-round burst selector as the M16A2/A4.


I play a lot of Gears or War 2 these days and I am in love with the Hammerburst Rifle. It is a single shot every time you pull the trigger, but, the faster you pull that trigger, the faster it fires. I can shoot that mother like none other.

That's how all semiautomatic firearms work...


A Bolter being like that would also work, imo. A Marine would have the training and ability to carry it and fire it quickly, pulling the trigger rapidly enough to make it almost seem like a full auto or burst fire weapon.

That's one possibility; other possibilities would be that marine bolters have a full-auto setting whereas IG bolters only have a single-shot and/or burst setting, and that Marines are thus capable of producing a larger volume of fire by using their full-auto setting. Or that all bolters have a full-auto setting, but that the recoil on full-auto badly degrades accuracy for non-Marines (which is plausible if the recoil is similar to that of a modern 7.62mm rifle), preventing them from using it effectively. Or that no bolters have a full-auto setting, but Marine versions do have a burst setting while IG versions are single-shot only.


And, if I remember correctly, the M-16 being made into a 3 round burst weapon was a thing of the Vietnam era designed to help conserve ammunition.

Yes, that was the rationale. I'm not saying it was a bad decision, just pointing out that most armies in the world have a full-auto setting on their service rifles, and rely on training rather than the fire selector to prevent ammo wastage.

EDIT: Just to clarify, I'm not trying to "prove you wrong" or anything. I have no problem with the idea of semiauto-only bolters, though I do think that an additional burst setting (not necessarily full auto) would sometimes be useful. But it's certainly not crucial. As I said, a burst setting would probably be rarely used even by SMs, and especially by Guardsman; both would probably want to stick to single shots most of the times even if they had the option to use a burst.

Lothlanathorian
21-09-2009, 00:58
Oh, I don't think you're trying to 'prove me wrong'. I am enjoying this. I am learning things about real life weaponry and we are applying it to 40K. Learning and my favorite hobby? Together? Win.

And I wasn't sure if all semi-auto fire could fire as fast as you pull the trigger or not. I've never fired an actual weapon in my life. (So sad. So, so sad.)

Argastes
21-09-2009, 01:09
Yeah, they basically can; there is theoretically a mechanical limit imposed by the time it takes for the weapon's bolt to cycle back and forth, but you would have to pull the trigger many times per second to reach that limit, which is essentially impossible. The real limit is the trigger pull and the trigger travel distance. Trigger pull (measured as a weight, i.e. "this weapon has a four-pound trigger") is how much force your finger has to exert before the trigger "breaks" and the weapon fires. Trigger travel distance is how far back the trigger moves as it's pulled. A weapon with a heavy trigger pull and/or a longer trigger travel cannot be fired as quickly as a weapon with a lighter trigger pull or shorter trigger travel; when the trigger pull is very light, you can just tap your finger lightly and quickly against the trigger to fire rapidly. Of course, most people aren't capable of shooting accurately anyhow when firing as fast as they can pull the trigger, and it gets worse the heavier the weapon's recoil is.

I'm glad you're finding this interesting, gives me a chance to ramble ;)

EDIT: BTW, I see you're located in Maryland.... I'm a northern Virginia native, and although I'm out the area right now, I should be back within the year. If you ever want to go shooting and touch on some actual firearms, let me know! There are several good ranges nearby.

Lothlanathorian
21-09-2009, 01:22
Rambling is all the fun. Now, I will again use a video game as my frame of reference and experience. The Hammerburst is set so that you barely have to tap the trigger on the controller to fire it. I am picturing Bolters being like that. A light trigger with short travel.

And I couldn't complain about an opportunity to shoot a gun and the possibility of Warhammer. Need to be ready for when the Zombie Apocalypse happens.

And I am interested in IG Storm Troopers. We can talk out the wazzoo all day with Space Marine speculation, but IG ST are closer to real life special forces than anything else the Imperium has. And we never talk much about them on Warseer.

Damage,Inc.
21-09-2009, 05:57
I have long been a fan of 'harder' sci-fi and although I love 40K, some of the excuses that get used for things and the 'over-the-topness' do cut the interest for me.

Space Marines- I have always seen them as the terror troops of the Imperium, for example. Like Roman Praetorians, you would feel well protected when they are fighting against your enemy however you would never want to talk to one in the street or invite one into your home.

I see them as being nameless, faceless, armored killing machines, lethal, stealthy when need be, and ruthless. Of course we lose some of this idea once we are let into the 'world' of the space marines and see their interactions with each other.

I guess I just don't like the cartoony feel of much of 40K. The nitty gritty of realism turns out to be jsut as gothic as skulls and chains everywhere.