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Ultramarines 7th Company
Tactica: Hidden Ordanance
About Me
First Army List
The Ultramarines 7th Company
Article: The Chapters of Legend Part 1
Article: Space Marines of the Black Library
Article: Comprehensive History of the Salamanders
Article: Comprehensive History of the Space Wolves
Tactica: Tactics of the Adeptus Astartes
Tactica: Hidden Ordanance
Tactica: Powerfists and how to use them
Battle Report: Bloody Accusations Parts 3 & 4
Battle Report: Bloody Accusations Parts 1 & 2
Battle Report: Reaper's Harvest
Battle Report: Beware the Daemon
Battle Report: Suffer Not The Alien To Live
Battle Report: Death to the Traitors
Battle Report: Shattered Armor
Battle Report: Undaunted Traitors
Battle report: Old Hatreds
Battle Report: Death to the Xenos
Battle Report: Baptism of Fire

A Tactical article on a common problem faced by players of all races including Space Marines. The problem of hidden ordanance and sneaky, hidden opponents.

Tactica: Hidden Ordanance


We all have seen it I am sure. The Bassalisk, Leman Russ, Defiler, Whirlwind etc sat behind a large bit of terrain at the back of the enemies army almost impossible to get at with conventional methods raining death on your squads. All have something to fear from this, high strength means hits easily wound and a number of such hidden units shots are ap3, scary to even marines.

So I have decided to try my hand at writing a tactica for Marines for a change. Instead of the usual that I write about killing marines.

Now for starters there are a few ways to get at those opponents and each has their benefits. But all of them have one task. To get at that sneaky enemy vehicle or position pounding your army out of sight. This is conventionally some ordanance carrying vehicle but can also be Eldar craft with CTM, warp spiders or even Tau Battlesuits or tanks. However no matter what it is one fact remains, its pounding your forces and is always out of sight when its your turn to try at retribution.

There are however some very nice methods of dealing with those troublesome units so lets take a look at them.

The Solutions:

Pros: Deep Striking Terminators with assault cannons can chew through even Land Raiders. Tough to take return fire and well armed they can mow down infantry positions and blow up a target vehicle or squadron with a good chance of success.
Cons: You cant be very sure of when these guys will arrive and unless using a teleport homer they are in danger of scattering and dying. As the target will usually be hidden in a corner behind terrain the possibilities of instant death by falling into terrain or off the board are all too present.

Pros: These guys can take infiltrators or tank hunters and can drop in with a drop pod or infiltrate forward and can pack grenades, power fists and melta guns for dealing with that armor aswell as cc power to chew through say a group of mortar teams.
Cons: Armor, these guys are not as heavily armored as Terminators and lack invulnerable saves. Add to that their weapons that actually deal with armor while there are limited and not nearly as multi shot as assault cannons.

Pros: Drop podding in a Dreadnaught with any mix of the assault cannon, missil launcher, and twin linked lascannon is sure to do some damage to whatever it targets and the drop pod is safer than Terminators.
Cons: There is a good chance however that the Dreadnaught will scatter too far away to shoot its target or get to it and of course now your dreadnaught (always fairly vulnerable as many marine players know) is way out in a forward position and with plenty of enemies around.

Tactical Marines
Pros: The options for these guys is many indeed especially with the traits you have everything from two assault weapons to infiltration and many others besides. Some geared towards taking out tanks.
Cons: Getting these guys there will certainly be a problem, even infiltrating the likelyhood of getting close is not great and Tactical marines, like the Veterans, are not that tough or numerous. If you commit too many disaster is likely and too few they wont succeed. There are certainly better options than the Tactical Marines for this job.

Pros: Cheap, infiltration capable, can take a heavy bolter or missil launcher for dealing with infantry or vehicles plus they move through cover well.
Cons: Very lightly armored and they just dont have the weapons options or speed once infiltrated to get to grips with their target who is likely well hidden from even infiltration.

Assault Marines
Pros: Power Fist sergeant, plasma pistols and melta bombs make these guys great for rushing in to deal with enemy armor. They move fast and are well armed. Even a squadron of skimmers has much to fear from them. With as many as 3 plasma pistol shots on the move, then a charge with melta bombs and power fist attacks an entire squadron can crash quickly and there are many chances of punching the high armor of a Leman Russ or Defiler with upgrades.
Cons: Expencive and few in number they can also crash and die if they land in terrain and are subject to the same ordanance that comes raining down on your forces. They can also be locked in close combat and pulled down in a prolonged engagement or slaughtered by a more dedicated assault unit such as khorn berserkers before they ever reach their target.

Land Speeders
Pros: These have a multitude of options and can take weapons such as multi meltas and assault cannon and heavy bolters aswell as even missil launchers. They are fast and skimmers so they can speed over terrain, have armor to save them from quite a bit of small arms fire, cant be locked in close combat and can deal with both infantry and armor.
Cons: Not heavily armored they could easily go down to dedicated fire, plus they could always crash into terrain if they are unlucky. For a skimmer moving fast immobolization is a firey death.

Bike Squadrons
Pros: With up to two melta guns, a power fist and a multi melta aswell as the ability to turbo charge that even gains them an invulnerable save and higher toughness they are not only durable but pack enough punch to tear through infantry and armor.
Cons: Few in number and not cheap they can suffer when trying to pass through terrain and like the assault marines can be cought in close combat but with an assault bike are even more expencive.

Pros: Indirect fire like whatever is shooting at you it does not have to get close. Especially if you are facing enemy infantry, such as mortar teams, that blast weapon could wreak havoc on the enemy raining shells on your lines.
Cons: If the center of the Ordanance is not over the target its strength is halved and your wasting a blast weapon on a vehicle.

Land Raider
Pros: Heavily armed and armored, the Land Raider Crusader especially, you could use this vehicle to run the gauntlet of enemy fire and get at that hidden foe.
Cons: Expencive and running the gauntlet is in general a bad, bad idea as many times you wont make it even with AV14.


There are many ways marines can get at hidden foes. However from the list of likely candidates I will select five for major consideration and they are as follows and I will explain why:

-They have the arms and armor to do the job. While targeting well hidden vehicles and mortar teams may not be the best idea not all enemies will be hidden that well as things like Battlesuits and warp spiders will be using whatever cover they have and by simply eliminating that cover the Terminators can flush them out to be shot or assaulted by other units in your army or shoot them to pieces. Teleporting is however always a risk so use with caution.

-The drop pod is a good reliable way of getting the Dread in there safely and has a good chance putting a bit of LOS blocking cover where you want. The Dreadnaught is also very heavily armed for dealing with the foe of your choice and with a nice drop you could even bring a heavy flamer and assault cannon to bear on a nice hidden infantry target and destroy it. This can be especially devastating against hidden infantry units, cover using infantry (such as Warp Spiders and Battlesuits) and can even flush out ambush units aswell as taking out hidden Ordanance with a bit more safety than the Terminators can manage. However the Dread will likely be a one hit wonder and face retribution and near sure destruction when your opponents next turn comes so chose a target that will earn the Dreads points back in one blast if you can.

Assault Marines
-These guys have the speed to get where they need to go reliably and can stay behind cover doing it. Ordanance is always a problem but they can sitll take it out if you need to and they can deal with other hidden threats aswell that the rest of your army cannot get to. They only have power armor though so they cannot do everything and careful use is required. They are like a fine arrow, aim carefully and fire when the time is right or otherwise they can prove useless.

Land Speeders
-Speed and durability these can get to the threat and neutralize it quickly and efficiently by as soon as turn 2. They are also not that expencive compared to many other options and once their main target is destroyed have a good likelyhood and armament to move on and deal with something else so their use continues once they achieve their goal where the Dread can be destroyed, the Assault Marines find themselves far from the action and Terminators blanketed by an unrelenting storm of fire and fall.

Bike Squadrons
-Fast and durable like the Land Speeders they also pack nice weaponry. They are expencive though fully loaded and can be cought in cc. They are though a good and fast though, as fast as Land Speeders and do not suffer from being shaken and getting their weapons destroyed which could leave the Land Speeders useless. But they do suffer cassualties and could be pinned. A good alternative to Land Speeders for those armies who are limited in their choices of such units but they are not perfect.

Therefore in short the Marines have a great many options for dealing with hidden units. Chosen with care and used correctly there is nowhere to hide for the enemies of the Emperor.

I hope this has proved useful for those of you who encounter this all too common tactical problem.

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