Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Must Have Unit: Space Marine Scouts

"Take the shot, take the shot!"

There's a call to arms for a collaborative post From the Warp regarding "must have" units. These aren't tactical or game-winning units, but units that you personally try to work in every time, regardless if they're technically points winners or not. Tau Vespids are definitely one such unit that comes to mind, wow, they look awesome, and their fluff is even cooler, but have you ever fielded them? They are not "for the greater good"!

For me, it's the Space Marine Scouts. Space Marines are great, they always have been, but Scouts are the "cooler" version of said greatness. They're tough, but not crazy 3+ power armor tough, but they're still considered "marines". In codex chapters, scouts are the rookies of the chapter who have to earn their way into a suit of standard power armor and one of the more veteran companies. In this way it's neat to think of captains (or chapter masters) slogging it out in scout armor as a FNG at one point in their career.

The loadout options for scouts is also something that is very cool. Standard marines get a boltgun, that's it. Scouts get boltguns too, but can switch up to shotguns (still using pump action in the 41st millennium!), sniper rifles, close combat kits, camouflaged cloaks, and the like. Even their heavy bolters get a special ammo option in the form of Hellfire rounds, which was a nice throwback to see return in fifth edition.

A sneak peek of my upcoming Ultramarines army post...

Sure, scouts are flexible in their gear options, but the models themselves exude nothing but character. My Dark Angels army has sixty models or so, obviously the Deathwing termies stand apart, but the rest of the army looks roughly the same, except for, guess who, the scouts. Helmet-less, radio headsets, full visors, nightvision goggles, extra grenades, spools of rope, and the like all make them stand out and just look cool. Wearing scout armor, there's more options in your painting too because you have a lot of visible cloth in the form of pants, shirts, and (on the snipers) camo-cloaks. Plus, as seen with my old scouts right above, when they first came out they had the original combi-weapons...mullet-mohawks!

...and then there's 'Turn Signals'

I've lauded Turn Signals on a Land Raider before, and it's sad that they are no longer cranking out funny 40k strips. They put a humorous light to my favorite unit, and frankly, cemented them as a "must have" unit in my book. The above strip was the first one to show up, and it's hilarious. It's also the reason I say, "We are the ninjas!" whenever I field them! The idea of the models being left at the game store ('cause they were in cover) is funny to me. It's never happened to me, but I'm sure it's not that rare an occasion.

Over half a million "scale" miles of terrain...

Look at them, they're friggin' rock stars!

scout sergeant played by Ice Man apparently...

From time to time, scouts can be surprisingly effective

So there you have it, Space Marine Scouts are my "must have" unit. From a tactical standpoint, they have lots of options (didn't even mention bikes or the Storm!) and can fill a variety of roles depending on how you outfit them. Visually, in a fairly vanilla marine army, they may be some of the more characterful models you'll field (even amongst the HQ and Elites). They already had neat fluff to work with (and Dark Angels Scouts are even cooler), and thanks to SteveC86, they've also been given a good deal of humor to boot. Enjoy!


  1. Nice post, loving the old plastic "ultramarines" scouts - still have a squad of those myself in my bro's old DA army. Can't wait to see the ultramarines post!

  2. Thanks Tristan! I actually have a second mohawk-mullet squad primered and unpainted, but with a converted sarge (lost the old one).

    The Ultramarines army post is coming (as is a Tau and Dark Angles), it's done and scheduled in the queue as we speak.

    Do you have any "must have" units?