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Author Topic: Who drives Space Marine tanks?  (Read 2920 times)

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Offline CODE BLACK

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Who drives Space Marine tanks?
« on: July 11, 2012, 11:13:49 AM »
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  • It's never a question I've thought before, but as the title says, who drives space marine tanks?

    It doesn't seem to say in the codex, or at least I can't find the answer. They don't seem to say where they fit in the standard chapter organisation.

    Obviously the pilots of stormtalons are techmarines, that's explicitly stated.

    There's a special character (Chronus) who's a tank commander but not a techmarine, but then the tank commanders that come in the sets are covered in techmarine iconography.

    The codex also says that chapters typically have a rhino for every squad, so that would be 90 rhinos at least, but I can't imagine there being 90+ techmarines in a chapter. In fact it states in the codex that the ultramarines maintain 27 techmarines.

    Offline travisb7

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #1 on: July 11, 2012, 11:29:03 AM »
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  • Specially trained Space Marines drive/pilot the Chapter's vehicles. The iconography is of the Adeptus Mechanicus as they are fully trained in the operation of their vehicles by this organization.

    Offline UselessSidekick

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #2 on: July 11, 2012, 12:39:29 PM »
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  • I have read somewhere that it's usually the seventh company that drives most of the vehicles I will try and find it probably on wiki or a site like that :-/ so not the most reliable source. But even if it is like you said that's 90+ marines for the rhinos but what about the rest of the armoury? I dont think the 1000 marine cap in each chapter fits the bill anymore especially when each tank needs a commander, driver and gunner at the least

    Offline Benis

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #3 on: July 11, 2012, 04:40:38 PM »
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  • It is stated that this task usually falls to the reserve companies (specifically the Ninth) and chapter serfs who failed to become a Space Marine very late in the transformation process.

    The Seventh company is specifically tasked with driving Land Speeders but not vehicles in general.

    Offline Ludo

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #4 on: July 11, 2012, 05:02:12 PM »
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  • Most chapters don't have large armories and the rhinos/razorbacks are for the battle companies 2-5.  I always assumed that they came from the tactical reserve company.  Two squads could drive around an entire battle company.

    I also think we field more tanks in a game than most chapters use in regular battles.
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    Offline Sir_Godspeed

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #5 on: July 11, 2012, 05:11:21 PM »
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  • Most chapters don't have large armories and the rhinos/razorbacks are for the battle companies 2-5.  I always assumed that they came from the tactical reserve company.  Two squads could drive around an entire battle company.

    I also think we field more tanks in a game than most chapters use in regular battles.

    I'm not sure on the actual ratio, but yes - it's important to keep in mind that tabletop =/= fluff. If it did, Space Marines would lose their officers a bit too often, for one thing.

    Offline Lachdonin

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #6 on: July 11, 2012, 08:42:00 PM »
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  • Certian specialised or highly revered vehicles are sometimes piloted by Techmarines. The Storm Raven, for instance, and i recall from the days of the current gen Land Raider's release it was also stated it was Techmarine driven.
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    Offline Hymirl, Space Machine!

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #7 on: July 12, 2012, 11:58:20 AM »
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  • I dont think the 1000 marine cap in each chapter fits the bill anymore especially when each tank needs a commander, driver and gunner at the least

    There never was a limit of 1000 marines. Thats just a general guideline for the marines in the main companies. It doesn't include command staff such as the chapter master, captains, the librarians, chaplains, apothecaries, techmarines and tech adepts who're part of the armoury and so on as they aren't strictly part of the fighting body of the chapter.

    And marine tanks enjoy a high level of automation, a chimera might have a commander, driver and gunner but a rhino/razorback has a single marine, or possibly two depending on configuration. Similarly heavy tanks like predators and land raiders have automatic everything, so you only need a driver and commander/gunner. Marines are hardcore, they multi-task!
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    Offline Ludo

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #8 on: July 12, 2012, 03:12:36 PM »
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  • And marine tanks enjoy a high level of automation, a chimera might have a commander, driver and gunner but a rhino/razorback has a single marine, or possibly two depending on configuration. Similarly heavy tanks like predators and land raiders have automatic everything, so you only need a driver and commander/gunner. Marines are hardcore, they multi-task!
    [/quote]

    Except those pintle mounted storm bolters and multi meltas on land raiders.  They are too much for the machine spirit and require a techmarine to fire them...
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    Offline Koval, Master Verispex

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #9 on: July 12, 2012, 03:37:00 PM »
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  • And marine tanks enjoy a high level of automation, a chimera might have a commander, driver and gunner but a rhino/razorback has a single marine, or possibly two depending on configuration. Similarly heavy tanks like predators and land raiders have automatic everything, so you only need a driver and commander/gunner. Marines are hardcore, they multi-task!

    Except those pintle mounted storm bolters and multi meltas on land raiders.  They are too much for the machine spirit and require a techmarine to fire them...
    Not necessarily, although having a Techmarine fire them can be justified from a fluff perspective as either wanting to improve the weapon's accuracy, or wanting to get stuck in while having a good view :P

    Offline Ghostofman

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #10 on: July 12, 2012, 03:58:19 PM »
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  • Some of the vehicles that require a higher level of training and experience to operate seem to have some kind of Tech-adept marines at the helm pretty regularly. While these could certainly be tech-marines, it's also possible that there is a middle ground of marines that attend a Mechanicus sponsored school/course that focuses on vehicle operation and basic field expedient repairs and preventive maintenance. You know, pre-flight checks, emergency procedures and oil changes,  but not the full "here's how to completely rebuild the engine". Think of something like Warrant Officer pilots. If nothing else this would explain the mechanicus bits we get... Sort of a "Here, you completed the vehicle crewers course, as a reward you get a mechanicus icon and a small can of red paint. Go nuts."

    But as Hymirl said, Tech marines (or the tech marines lite) may or may not count toward the marines chapter "cap." One thing that is clear is that in the Imperium, bureaucracy trumps common sense all the time. The Decree Passive was no doubt intended to strip the church of any military forces to prevent self destructive crusades and religiously motivated infighting. But since the thing said "men under arms" some Ministorium lawyer type came in and was all "oh-ho-ho the Sister of Battle are WOMEN under arms, and that totally different in every way possible... because... you know... boobs... and stuff..." (yes that's exactly how I envision it being worded). So there's precedent for some space marine type saying that since tech-marines are technically "non-combat support personnel that just happen to be able to fight really really well when the need arises, which just happens to be all the time" they shouldn't count against the marine chapter size caps. A slightly more sane argument would be that techmarine vehicle crews are tallied as part of the vehicle inventory instead of formal rosters, since the vehicle can't function without them (aside from the odd land raider of course) and their training too specialized to waste filling out tactical teams.

    Offline The GrimSqueaker

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #11 on: July 12, 2012, 04:08:18 PM »
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  • Back in the old days, if the Techmarine of a Land Raider was killed in the battle then the vehicle would have to be reconsecrated during the battle before it could be used again. They do say though that vastly abbreviated rituals were used if the battlefield was still, as you say, lively with the full rituals conducted at a later date. Of course, this was also during the time that the Imperial Guard had their own Land Raiders and that Marine Land Raiders were either built by the Adept Mech or by the Marine Chapter themselves at their own forges.
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    Offline Sir_Godspeed

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #12 on: July 12, 2012, 04:45:44 PM »
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    in the Imperium, bureaucracy trumps common sense all the time.

    I think the various organizations do a good job circumventing the bureaucracy for pragmatic reasons most of the time. ;)

    Offline myles

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #13 on: July 13, 2012, 02:00:31 PM »
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  • ... and that Marine Land Raiders were either built by the Adept Mech or by the Marine Chapter themselves at their own forges.

    Despite all these other changes, I thought this was still the case? Where else do Space Marines get their Land Raiders now?
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    Offline The GrimSqueaker

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #14 on: July 13, 2012, 02:08:16 PM »
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  • I thought they were now made only by Adept Mech Forgeworlds rather than by the Marines themselves. My mistake if otherwise.
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    Offline myles

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #15 on: July 14, 2012, 02:39:30 AM »
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  • Well, I can't be sure, I don't recall seeing anything that says they're no longer produced by the Marines themselves. But that was always a relatively small number to begin with, wasn't it?

    I just thought you meant that Land Raiders are rolling off of Hive World assembly lines now or something, I'm glad to see that isn't the case...
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    Offline Ludo

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #16 on: July 14, 2012, 06:41:00 AM »
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  • I think the more difficult patterns, like land raiders, are only made on certain forgeworlds. Mars is also the largest producer of land raiders in the imperium
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    Offline Becarem

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #17 on: July 14, 2012, 09:36:47 PM »
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    There never was a limit of 1000 marines. Thats just a general guideline for the marines in the main companies. It doesn't include command staff such as the chapter master, captains, the librarians, chaplains, apothecaries, techmarines and tech adepts who're part of the armoury and so on as they aren't strictly part of the fighting body of the chapter.

    This.  Chapters were never limited to strictly 1000 men.  Not only would there be graduating classes of scouts of slightly different sizes (marines in all but power armor, say), but command staff, specialists (tech marines, apothecaries, etc), and advisors of all types.  I think that even the most devout warrior would see the pragmatism in having another recruit squad or two, ready if not deployed.

    I have always felt that the number "thousand" was to be taken liberally, both in chapters and marines per chapter.  If the space marines serve the Imperium so well, then it would take little convincing to get the governing High Lords to permit some leeway in their recruitment.  Rate of attrition, and all.  Plus, there are chapters who consist of a few thousand, such as Black Templars.  In the Badab War, it only became apparent that the Astral Claws were "violating" this limit when they reached four to five thousand...yet they still thought of themselves as loyal.

    Even then, I believe the number "thousand" is supposed to be more reflective of the dark age mindset in the 40th millenium. Rather than try to memorize the exact numbers and dispositions of a largely independent fighting force, citizens and soldiers alike would be told, "thousand", because it is easy to envision.  Most of the fluff is told as interpretation instead of fact, anyway.

    tl;dr - Poetic use of the number "thousand" is not necessarily literal.

    Offline Sir_Godspeed

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #18 on: July 15, 2012, 10:45:33 AM »
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  • Even then, I believe the number "thousand" is supposed to be more reflective of the dark age mindset in the 40th millenium. Rather than try to memorize the exact numbers and dispositions of a largely independent fighting force, citizens and soldiers alike would be told, "thousand", because it is easy to envision.  Most of the fluff is told as interpretation instead of fact, anyway.

    tl;dr - Poetic use of the number "thousand" is not necessarily literal.

    I'm not so sure of that. If there is one thing the HH book series added to the universe that wasn't arguably ill-conceived, it's the idea that the Chapter had previously existed as a maneuver unit within the legions, a unit of approximately a thousand fighting men, somewhat similar to a battalion or somesuch. Regardless, the idea of a thousand fighting men isn't unique to the 40th millennium.

    Again, this is one more way the Imperium limits the capability of its various constituent parts. Imperial Guard commanders do not have access to interplanetary transports. Navy Captains and Admirals do not have access to substantial fighting forces to occupy planets, the Ecclesiarchy wasn't supposed to have access to any military forces (they cheated... but their forces still aren't humongous) and finally the Astartes are limited in numbers.

    Fact is, we know that marines aren't incorruptible. If anything, the prospect of a marine chapter going rogue or to chaos is such a terrifying prospect that it's better to keep them somewhat limited in the case of them doing so. Chapters who refuse this are either the subject of much controversy, or supported by ancient claims to their organizational body, or somehow working with some kind of "alibi" against corruption. (the Black Templars' constant crusading and lack of a chapter homeworld might count as this, though they still seem fairly controversial.)

    Point is; the numbers 1000 is meant as a standing rule, but at the same time, some leeway and turning of eyes is provided on a case-by-case basis. The Imperium Is A Big Place, after all.
    « Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 03:07:53 PM by Dipsomaniac »

    Offline Koval, Master Verispex

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    Re: Who drives Space Marine tanks?
    « Reply #19 on: July 15, 2012, 12:51:22 PM »
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  • I'm not so sure of that. If there is one thing the HH book series added to the universe that wasn't arguably ill-conceived, it's the idea that the Chapter had previously existed as a maneuver unit within the legions, a unit of approximately a thousand fighting men, somewhat similar to a battalion or somesuch. Regardless, the idea of a thousand fighting men isn't unique to the 40th millennium.
    The Heresy books didn't add that, Gav Thorpe did in Angels Of Darkness. Astelan talks about being a Chapter Master, so considering that Astelan lived back when there were Legions, you do begin to see the Chapter as a sort of batallion-level structure within the framework of the Legion before the Heresy series took it and ran with it.

     

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