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Offline Gladewalker

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Size of a Space Marine
« on: June 20, 2006, 10:28:22 AM »

I was just thinking about the fluff that says a Space Marine is a 7' tall mountain of a man, bred to kill, super senses... etc etc etc How tall IS that? How strong would that make them? What does that relate to in "real world" terms?

I figure the average Guardsman is around the same as people today so about 5'8. A Space Marine at even just 7'1 would be about 25% taller. But, he'd also be 25% larger in all dimensions too so the mass would be about twice... so over 300 lbs (without suit and gear which would be much more!) I figure he'd be about twice as strong too, given the cube rule (height times width times length)

Does that seem about right?
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Offline Aesir Yggdrasil

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2006, 02:30:05 PM »
Well, if truely intent on figuring out how strong they are, average joe marine can make a mans head go squish. Now all you have to do is figure out how much pressure it takes to do that, and what kind of muscles are required to produce that much force. The tricky bit is figuring out if the marines doing it one handed or two-handed...
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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2006, 02:32:24 PM »
That would be almost an easy one to answer if he was doing it one handed or not.It can be summed up like so:

Is the Marine using a Power Fist?

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Offline Vlex

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2006, 02:40:00 PM »
I've found that assuming the Toughness and Strength scale used in 40K is logarithmic is useful. That is, T4 is 10 times more tough than T3, S6 ten times stronger than S5, and so forth. However, for real approximations of strengths you need to turn to Inquisitor and even there the system is a bit broken. A space marine punches harder than a plasma rifle shoots.  :P IMO, Marines shouldn't ever have bee introduced to Inquisitor.  :-\


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Offline Aesir Yggdrasil

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2006, 02:43:37 PM »
That would be almost an easy one to answer if he was doing it one handed or not.It can be summed up like so:

Is the Marine using a Power Fist?

Power fists are hardly fair, as is power armour, as both blow things into the superman scale. Really, might as well give a gaurdsman a titan and ask how hard is he to kill...
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Offline sergeantbrother

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2006, 03:55:52 PM »
Lets say that we have Bill, the Imperial guardsman who is 5'8" and weighs 160 lb. Bill can bench press 200 lb.

I Bill were suddenly increased in size from 5'8" to 7'1", then his strength would increase with the square of the heigh increase and his weight would increase with the cube of the height increase. 85" divided by 68" is 1.25, so his weight would increase by a factor of 95.3% and his strength would increase by a factor of 56.3%. So at 7'1" Bill would both weigh and bench 312.5 pounds.

But, that is a very scrawny build for a Space Marine, 5'8" and 160 lb isn't exactly bulging with muscles. If Bill were taken as a teenager and given Space Marine treatment, he would surely end up much heavier than that. Lets give our Space marine the build and strength of power lifter Scot Mendelson who is 6'1" and weighs 320 lb. He can bench press 713 lb. So, lets make him 7'1" : 85/73 = 1.1644. So our Space Marine would weigh 505 pounds and could bench press 967 pounds.

But, with all of his high tech augmentations, surely a Space Marine is stronger than a modern day unaugmented human weight lifter. Lets assume the Space Marine's muacles have to be at least twice as strong as the weight lifter's for an equal cross sectional area. Under that assumption the 7'1" 505 lb Space Marine could bench press 1,933 pounds - a small car. And this is without power armor.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2006, 04:03:01 PM by sergeantbrother »

Offline Gladewalker

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2006, 04:24:00 PM »
Ya know.. genetic augmentation is nice and all.. but I still think there's a limit human physiology can take. For example, too much muscle can snap a bone (happens to athletes who over-build even now) since it's more than the body was designed/evolved for.

I'd say the thousand pound lift is enough super-mod. Why would you say strength is double when mass is tripled? Why wouldn't they both be tripled?
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Offline sergeantbrother

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2006, 04:47:55 PM »
The strength of muscle is not based on the mass of the muscle, it is based on cross sectional area of the muscle. Cross sectional area increases with the square of heigh and not the cube of height. This is why larger things are proportionally weaker than smaller things. Ants for example, are very strong pount per pound, but the only reason that they are is because they are so small. If you make an ant large enough, it wouldn't be able to move under its own weight. This principle is one thing that limits the size of animals.

As for there beings a maximum strength even with augmentation - that is true.  But with the Ossmodula which not only stimulates bone growth but allows for the bones to absorb ceramic compounds to become even stronger and the Biscopea organ which stimulates muscle growth, I would have to think that a Space Marine would be stronger than just a larger version of a normal human weight lifter. With augmentation like a space marine has, I don't even know if you could call it "human physiology" anymore.

Offline Kage2020

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2006, 05:47:44 PM »
Well, this thread is going to be posted on the "commonly posted thread" sticky! ;)

Quote from: Gladewalker
How strong would that make them? What does that relate to in "real world" terms?
Unfortunately, not only their training regimen but their bionetic augmentations make this a fairly redundant question . That is, the results of what goes into creating a Marine also goes to skew any form of standard equation of strength vs. height, which is problematic anyway.

Quote from: Gladewalker
I figure the average Guardsman is around the same as people today so about 5'8. A Space Marine at even just 7'1 would be about 25% taller.
The problem is that there are lots of contradictory information here.  About the only bit of 'fluff' that tries to give some information on this is Jes Goodwin's scaled "Space Marine" image in the back of his artbook, but in that he couldn't count (he starts off at 2').  With that said, I personally agree with his overall scale, i.e. a Space Marine is around 8' in power armour.  This means that, reasonably realistically, they're going to have an average height of around 7'7".  With that said, I would put their average weight at around 350 lbs or so.

Quote from: Gladewalker
I figure he'd be about twice as strong too...
Canonically they are around four times as strong.  (I find this amusing since I originally had them at around that strength out of power armour, but PA increased that to around twenty-five times as strong!  A tad too high... ;))

Actually, on this premise, how much do you think that a Marine in Power Armour could lift with a single arm without overtly straining themselves?

Quote from: ui-Gon Jinn
Quote from: ui-Gon Jinn
Is the Marine using a Power Fist?
Not too relevant, methinks.

[quote autho=Vlex]I've found that assuming the Toughness and Strength scale used in 40K is logarithmic is useful.
That doesn't hold up with the comparisons that GW has, though.

[quote autho=Vlex]However, for real approximations of strengths you need to turn to Inquisitor and even there the system is a bit broken. A space marine punches harder than a plasma rifle shoots. [/quote]
Ain't that the truth.  I'm also interested in this because it helps me model them in GURPS Rogue Trader, my own personal conversion of 40k...

Quote from: sergeantbrother
Lets say that we have Bill, the Imperial guardsman who is 5'8" and weighs 160 lb. Bill can bench press 200 lb.
The values are a tad low, out of interest.  Average weight would probably be higher.  As to the lifting capacity?  Hmmn... definitely on the hight side for the average, I think.

Quote from: Aesir Yggdrasil
So our Space Marine would weigh 505 pounds and could bench press 967 pounds.
Again, a tad too high based upon how weight tends to go.  More so when you add in the "heroic factor".

Quote from: Gladewalker
Ya know.. genetic augmentation is nice and all.. but I still think there's a limit human physiology can take.
Amen to that.

Quote from: sergeantbrother
As for there beings a maximum strength even with augmentation - that is true.  But with the Ossmodula which not only stimulates bone growth but allows for the bones to absorb ceramic compounds to become even stronger and the Biscopea organ which stimulates muscle growth, I would have to think that a Space Marine would be stronger than just a larger version of a normal human weight lifter. With augmentation like a space marine has, I don't even know if you could call it "human physiology" anymore.
With such a wonderful physiological response for cross-sectional area, to get this one for Marines is a tad disappointing.  I would take a more balanced approach and let game mechanics work out average strength of specific activities based on determined values.  Anyone care to provide any suggestions?

Personally I'm torn on how strong to make the average human in RPG terms.  I would hate to make them completely munchkin! ;)

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Offline Gladewalker

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2006, 06:10:59 PM »
Well, I was using the 7' scale and making them twice as powerful as "normal" humans. So if you go by that reasoning, each "step" of attribute would be approximately double... so a guardsman would be twice as strong as a grot for example. For fun, we could go all the way up and see that a Carnifex would be 64 times as strong as a Guardsman. Sounds about right =-)

While we're at it... how in the HECK are Kroot as strong as Space Marines anyway? With those spindly little arms and legs? They look very fragile actually.
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Offline Kage2020

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2006, 06:24:38 PM »
Because it is a wargame, and not designed to make 'sense'.  Otherwise the Eldar would be far, far more powerful than practically anything else other than the darned Necrons! ;)  Even then it is a matter of perspective.

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Offline Vlex

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2006, 06:38:52 PM »
The Kroot's muscle structure was likened to wires/cables (don't quote me on the exact wording) in the first Tau codex. The result of this being that their limbs move exceedingly fast for their size. Thus, immensely hard hitting for just being 'wiry'. Of course, don't forget to take a copious dose of Handwavium before considering this.

EDIT: This being said, in Inquisitor the average Kroot's strength is 62. An unarmoured Marine's is 151. For reference, a guardsman (not civilian) is 57. Try to get your head around that. :P

EDIT2: Oh, and forgive me for falling back on Inquisitor so much. It's a good game, I swear!
« Last Edit: June 20, 2006, 06:43:06 PM by Vlex »


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Offline Full Metal Geneticist

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2006, 06:49:36 PM »
I think its effective strength. For example a weight lifter has massive slow burn muscles. However a footballer has less muscle but can kick harder owing to a different mix. So the marine may be able to bench press x KG but in a fight the punch the kroot throws is just as good.


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Offline sergeantbrother

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2006, 08:21:55 PM »
If a Marine is 7'7" tall and weighs 350, then he would be quite skinny. He would have the same build as a 5'8" human who weighs 146 pounds. I think that my estimate of 505 lb for a 7'1" (620 for a 7'7" Marine) is pretty close, considering marines are supposed to be heavily muscled.

I am inclined to think that a Marine should be very strong compared to a normal human, so much so that a normal person would stand no chance in a physical fight that didn't include high tech weapons.

As for a punch being more powerful than a plasma weapon, no way. A huge Kodiak Bornw Bear is really string and powerful, but against a tank it would be powerless. That is how I see a marine's strength. A plasma weapon (or tank, etc.) is high technology and should be vastly superior to a marine's ability to damage with his bare hands.

As far as balancing this for a RPG, it can be difficult. Personally, I would never allow Space Marines to be player characters. Also, even balancing something like a plasma gun would be difficult. A hand held anti-tank weapon should be able to kill anybody with one hit.

Offline Deloth Vyrr

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2006, 09:44:19 PM »
As for a punch being more powerful than a plasma weapon, no way. A huge Kodiak Bornw Bear is really string and powerful, but against a tank it would be powerless. That is how I see a marine's strength. A plasma weapon (or tank, etc.) is high technology and should be vastly superior to a marine's ability to damage with his bare hands.

Well Inquisitor seems to have a pretty solid base on comparing strengths, at least moreso then WH40k. Unfortunatly for u, a Marine's punch does far more damage then any standard firearm and is on par or even greater then some heavier weapons.

In Inquisitor, a Marine does substantially more damage with a throwing axe then they do with a Bolter, or any other gun that you could arm them with.
The force at which they can throw said axe is soooo powerful, then magnified by power armor, it would pass through the carcasses of a douzen guardsmen without slowing down much.

Offline Mud Man!

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2006, 10:27:06 PM »
In conclusion, how strong are Space Marines?

Stronger than you.
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Offline alienspokinatcha

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2006, 11:05:20 PM »
Inquisitor is a hopeless game.

A plasma gun tears a man apart , and I highly doubt that a marine punch would even do the same damage as a bolter round
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Offline hunterXXL

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2006, 06:53:45 AM »
stop comparing game rules with fluff

the fluff is true the ganme rules are different to balance it


nobody wants that all marines are as powerfull as a hive tyrant (and expensive) compared to imperial gaurd
its not fun to play with that why the rules are like that. simple


oww yes and a example of how powerfull marines are
how about they climb walls by punching holes in concrete to use it for a ladder
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Offline The Ego-Man

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2006, 05:52:30 PM »
A powerfist is iirc said to have a thnder-like energy around that destroys anything around it, thus it's not just a matter of strenght.
Instead, a SM is fruit of genetic engineering and fed with hormons since it was born, thus i'd say at least 2 meters tall, heavy 100 kilos, muscular by "nature" and yes, much stronger than a regular human, it could easily smash a man's head with a single hand.
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Offline Deloth Vyrr

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Re: Size of a Space Marine
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2006, 06:07:29 PM »
True, but Inquisitor (you guys are gonna hate me :P), a Marine without Power Armor punches approximatly the same as a Guardsman with a Powerfist

 


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