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Get your Free Space Marines! Well sort of…. Space Marine Initial Ideas.

There are some really interesting new formations coming out of the new Space Marine Codex.  Clearly some of the Chapter tactics, Librarian formations and the Land Raider ‘walls of death’ are drawing some attention.  But look over the lowest common denominator at your peril. 

The humble Marine and his workhorse transport have been and always will be at the core of your list and GW is ramming that home with the new Demi-Company.

Tournaments in the US like 1850pts; the UK right now leans toward 1650pts.  They also like fixing you to either one Decurion style formation or one CAD/Allie, one CAD/LoW, CAD/Formation etc.  We will use these rules to temper some of the craziness that could follow by adding things like Grey Knights, Space Wolves, Blood Angels, Priests, Cent Pods etc.

Lets play with an Ultramarine/Iron hand Demi-Company, using the rule when you increase it to a full Battle Company (i.e. 2 Demi-Coys).

1 x Captain with Auspex.
3 x 5 man Marine squads with one Combi-Plasma and Plasma Gun in each squad.
1 x Land Speeder.
1 x 5 man Dev Squad with 2 Grav Cannons.

Totals 565pts – critically no transports…

Lets double it with maybe Meltas instead of Plasma and add a Chaplain with Auspex.

1 x Chaplain with Auspex.
3 x 5 man Marine squads with one Combi-Melta and Melta Gun in each squad.
1 x Land Speeder.
1 x 5 man Dev Squad with 2 Grav Cannons.

Total 550pts. 

Our running total is a slim line 1115pts. 

42 marines, inc 2 HQ with -1 Cover save and 4++, 2 Deep Striking Flamer Templates and what could be 20-24 Turn 1 Snap shot Grav shots.  Not bad, but room for improvement.

Now when you take the extra core choice you need an Auxiliary selection to make the Decurion legal. Hmm will we have enough points?  Spoiler…yes, with some to spare... This is where the power starts ramping up.

I have a problem with flyers from what I have chosen so far.  I have 2 options in my opinion.  The Storm Wing Formation with Las Talons comes in at 450pts.


The 2 Stalker/Hunter formation arrives at 220pts.

If I were running an Ultramarine Pod list I would take the flyers for null deployment.

If I were running Iron Hands I would take the 3 tanks.

And now for the actual Sicarius Coup de Grace! 

Each list requires 8 transports, easily 9 if you add a Comd Squad with 3 Meltas at 120pts – lets do that shall we?  That gives us 5 Pods turn one.  Nice.

The Ultramarine player in me pulls off 9 Drop Pods from the shelf, adding them to my army for free.  315pts of model for free. 27 AV12 Hull points, all Objective Secured.

The Iron Hand player takes Razorbacks…oh boy….  495pts of model for free.  27 Str 5 Twin Linked Heavy Bolter shots.  Re-growing, it will not die, Objective Secured tanks.

Final checks and balances then.  2 Core choices and 1 Aux; all good in that department.  We are only using the Decurion so we should be fine in a tournament setting.  The Demi-Coy states the entire formation is Objective Secured, not just troops.  That’s all the HQ’s, Land Speeders (!) and Devastators Ob Sec – important and powerful. 

The Ultramarine list comes in at 1685pts with 315 pts of free models. 

The Iron Hand List comes in at 1455pts with 495pts of free models. 

At this point player preference takes over to get you up to 1650/1850 respectively.  If you think those numbers of free models are high you can easily add another Comd Squad and/or Dreadnoughts to get more free transport models…. there is still over 300pts to play with in an 1850pts list.

I tip my hat to GW on another clever way to get us to take (buy!) more models.  The community limited games to standard point levels around 1750pts and by making stuff free, well…. We will inevitably buy more!

Disclaimers: If my math is a bit wonky forgive me, but it is not far away that’s for sure.  Without the proper book there could be some holes.  This is all good theory.  There are a few things that could invalidate these ideas and I will need to check it tomorrow.  Can Tac Marines be taken in 5 man units in the Battle Company? From what I can see, yes but if they force 10 man squads this would limit things.  Will the Land Speeder on its own satisfy the mandatory Fast Attack choice in the Demi-Coy?  I think so from what I read but I want to check.  Will tournaments limit Marines to one core choice making the Battle Coy impossible to take? Who knows, we must enjoy it as it is for now and make the most of the new book.

Will you make friends down in your club running 9 Pods and 9 Razorbacks, effectively playing 2000pts vs some dudes 1650 list? No you won’t.  In a tournament setting by all means go for it.  The chance to play a Marine Coy properly and maybe get somewhere with it is a Marine players dream come true for some.  It is time to turn the tables and exert some revenge on the Elder Wave Serpent spam! (I jest J) However I would suggest saving it for tournaments rather than chasing causal gamers away from the hobby this coming weekend!  Enjoy!  HTB.


  1. Something a friend pointed out yesterday. The space marine company, because it's two "Demi" companies, is illegal in the ITC and many tournaments because it "duplicates" a formation or detachment.

  2. It's a great point. We will see if anywhere allows it. I think the theory is still sound however. And I think more free stuff will be tied into formations in future releases for sure.

    1. won't be so bad once everyone is on the same playing field...but as of right now, my orks are seriously feeling the pain. The scout statline at the cost of a boy + avy armor is insane.

    2. Think orks with free trucks! Brutal.

    3. Dread mob with free killa kans :P

  3. Iron Hands vehicles (except Dreadnoughts) no longer get It Will Not Die. Just a heads up.


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