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Hi. I'm a Space Marine player and am having trouble againts my friend, who plays with CSM - he usually uses the Mark of Nurgle.
I don't have his army list but I'd like some general advice.
The problems I see are that CSMs are SMs with super-powers and über in close combat. I have a Land Raider? He has a Land Raider. I have Devastators? He has Obliterators. I have Marneus Calgar? He has Demons!
I try to bring low AP weapons, use as many Reserves as possible to better use the battle field, try to separate his armies across the board - he does all that too.
I've heard I should use the disadvantage that CSMs are not as mobile - should I use more Drop Pods? Use more Scout troops with Out-flanking, Infiltration or Reserve? Should I buy Jump Infantry? Is there more to it?
He's not a cheater; we've been playing games since we're kids - and he knows the rules of his games VERY well.
The thing is: CSMs keep looking much better options than SMs. No, I wouldn't change my army, because I love my Ultramarines, but it sucks to have my mighty army being crushed under his close combat attack. I do believe that the point system works, so when I play a 1500 points battle, I really expect to have a fair fight. But against CSMs, it hasn't been one, IMO.
My armies have fared well against Tyranids, Imperial Guard and against SMs, using mainly Tactical Squads, Drop Pods, Dreadnoughts and Scouts.
Can I get some help?
First of all, may i recommend rhino tactical squads with melta guns and power fists? Have about three of themn and a scout squad of five with rocket and snipers for objective sitting. Then take two libbies with null zone and might of heroes and give the libbies some bikes. Then you have three units of 2 attack bikes each with multi-meltas and stick two libbies with them to support your army.
I would only ever suggest drop pod armies to the space wolves, because they don't have attack bike squads, but i think you need rhinos and attack bikes which will make the chaos marines shudder as attack bikes are very good value for points and they essentially have 36" multi-meltas due to their movement.
2x librarian with bikes ( they stay with the attack bikes until you tactical marines can get into combat and depending on who your facing, might of heroes your sergeant with the power fist or your libby ) Or you can null zone a daemon prince and watch him die to multi-melta and missile launcher spam.
3x tactical marine squads with melta weapons and a power fist in rhinos
1x scout squad in camo cloaks, snipers and a missile launcher
3x units of 2 attack bikes with multi-meltas.
This should give you a very mobile force that can deal with almost anything.
Then i would suggest either units of devestators with missile launchers or sternguard squads (5 man squads) with lascannons. Never take more than two sternguard or two devestator squads in 1500 points. Mix and match if you want, but i think the devestators will be better due to more firepower and you already have attack bikes and melta weapons from your tactical squads.
The tacticals should not be split if you go rhino rush, because they are easy meat as five man squads and offer too many kill points
I hope my advice helps. You may also want you show your list in the army lists section of the forum.
Maybe deploy all your units on the board and travel in packs. If he's coming onto the board peice-meal from reserve it shouldn't be too hard to overwhelme 1 unit at a time and move on as quickly as possible.
Hope this helps.
Calgar is great... in apocalypse with 3 honor guard units. In a 1500 points game I would not take him. If you need someone to tank deamons use lysander or hammer-naters. Libarians are great with null zone. Instead of putting them on bikes, they could also get a terminatir armor and stormshield. They lack the mobility, but with your LR that should not be a problem.
I too just got my SM butt kicked by nurgle marines, but it was clearly because my deployment failed. Missiles are great vs. plauge marines, as it ignores FNP. They are also great at taking down his rhinoes and MC, allowing you to mauintain mobile superiority, and give you a chance in melee.
HQ: Take a cheap chaplin such as the Ultramarine spcial character with T6 (Cassius is it?)
Troops: Tac squads are great. Plague marine armies tend to be a little light on long ranged firepower so combat squadding in cover with plasma cannon or lascannon can be good. Put plasma or melta in the first element and I would buy razorbacks for them with LC/TL-Plasma gun. These make fantastic PM killers as well as being great vs daemon princes and other tanks.
Elites: Take assault termies with 2 TH/SS and 3 claws. Add the chaplin into them and they shred PMs easily as you ge the initiative on them and rerolling hits and wounds on Claws can rack up the kills. The TH can kill tanks and characters in one blow and the shields are great for allocating plasma hits to get the 3+ invulnerable save.
Fast: 2x MM attack bikes. Squads of 3-5 normal bikes with 2 plasma and a PF are good too.
Heavy: AC/2LC preds and vindicators are perfect.
Quorn! - Protein for the Protein God.
Awesome, guys! Thanks for all the tips!
It'll take some time for me to buy everything I need to make a more diversified army (like bikes) against CSMs but there are many other things that I can do right away! Like looking into Chaplain Cassius, the FNP disadvantages, the Rhinos and their modifications, Assault terminators, more librarians...
I'll come back to this thread in the future to post the results of my next battles, mainly against this CSM player.
Thanks for the help!
Chapter masters are very useful, if you hit them they will not survive, devastator squads with 4 plasma cannons obliterate anything, redeemers, vindicators and vanguard veterans also help. With your landraider put in some assualt terms(l.claws) with a chaplain if you charge, that is re rolling hits and wounds. Nice!