Background Image

(ec) Devastator Space Marine In Melee

Discussion in 'Space Marines' started by SergeantDracopickles, May 16, 2014.

  1. Fox Fox Active Member

    Heavy means it's going to have a chance at causing some kind of damage, unlike the combat knife which can't penetrate Astartes Power armor. Heavy objects don't need to pierce armor, they smash the bone beneath it. In the Warhammer novels, the authors depict devastators using their weapons to smash enemies when it becomes a desperate brawl. I have never read once that the devastators threw down their heavy weapons and started stabbing people with their knives.

    What's with this "presuming" stuff? Just look at a devastator model, and you'll see that the belt feed or cables go from the front of the weapon to Space Marine's backpack. In other words, it's short so that it doesn't get tangled up in the devastator's legs. If they were longer, they'd risk getting tripped up by their own weapon.


    Astartes Power armor is almost immune to small arms fire, including their own blessed boltguns. The knife isn't going to be used to cut through armor. It's going to be used to target the joints while your opponent is just going to hack you in half with his chainsword.

    Furthermore, I don't read about Space Marines always having a knife. The knife is hardly ever depicted in the novels. I've gone entire novels without the knife even being mentioned. So, no, there isn't a good logic to assume everyone has a combat knife.

    Main Issue: Why would you put down the only thing that is going to give you a chance to kill your attacker? Kicking and bashing your enemy gives you a chance to use your heavy weapon and kill him. Pulling out the combat knife against a melee specialist is just fighting on HIS terms, not yours. You're already dead once you toss your heavy weapon away. Using the knife is going to get you killed. It is a terrible idea.
    JuSpE likes this.
  2. Mhorge Mhorge Curator

    A monomolecular edged weapon is going to pierce anything, it's monomolecular.

    I think we're just going to have to disagree here then, because looking at the heavy bolter for example, it looks like to me that there is room to spare to drop it and quickly draw out your weapon. And drawing out your weapon for a group of people who train for combat in all fashions for their lives is going to be reaching for their weapon by reflexive action.

    If the enemy is 30 metres out, I'm going to overwatch, and I'll continue to overwatch until the enemy is about 5 metres out, then I'd drop my weapon if he manages to survive that long for over 25 metres of the air sizzling past him and mass reactive bolts driving divots out of his flesh. If he, despite all of that hell being unleashed in his face manages to get to me, then I'll drop my weapon and prepare to receive his charge with my own, because if both of my hands are taken up swinging something so cumbersome as a heavy weapon I'm dead, because I can't react to his blows. If his chainsword comes into my bolter, then he's going to carve it up, and then I'd have to explain myself to the Techmarines and their lectures afterwards. I'd also be unable to fulfill my role as a Devastator for a period of time.

    If I emerge triumphant after the charge, I can pick up my heavy weapon and retake my position. I'll drop the heavy at the last possible second because it's dead weight to me in an actual engagement, because it's not actually designed for the purpose of close combat.
  3. Fox Fox Active Member

    Chainswords are monomolecular, and even they don't ensure a kill against a Space Marine. In the TT, chainswords have a "-" stat for armor penetration, meaning they have no armor penetration at all. In the lore and novels, chainswords often get stuck inside of Space Marines because the motor can jam in all the metal and bone.

    No, you don't know what you're talking about. The TT disagrees, the novels disagree, the lore disagrees. This isn't an issue of agreeing to disagree. This is an issue of you not knowing what you're talking about. It's as simple as that. You don't know what you're talking about.

    If you want to continue believing your incorrect concept, be my guest. There is no rule against believing what you want even if it isn't true.
  4. Fangz Fangz Confessor


    When speaking in terms of marines, you have to throw away the incredible tech that easily fools players.
    The combat knife used by marines are generally used to slit throats, and is preferred only by veterans at that. Power armor isn't just a chunk of reactor-fueled metal, it has blessings and enchantments and whatever coating on top of that, giving it that seemingly indestructible character, and it does take more than a single molecular blade slice to penetrate.
    When being charged at, the devs' battle brothers would be the ones to engage those brave enough to rush those supermen, so it is not going to be the devs' waiting to drop his gun and get personal. Thus, when engaged in melee, it is usually out of some unaccounted for elements; either ambush or an enemy so capable that could even break through lines of marines. In cases like these, there are just not enough time for devs' to drop whatever they were holding and pull out a knife for a readied counter attack, not to mention after dropping their weapons the marines are practically naked of arms. Even if the devs' somehow managed to kill the engaging enemy after dropping his weapon and disconnecting the feed, how is he going to face new enemies showing up across the block? Even for a space marine it wouldn't be a 10 second thing to pick up the weapon he dropped and reconnect all the aux and cables, again during which time all the devs' have is a combat knife at hand.
    DekArosaro likes this.
  5. Mhorge Mhorge Curator

    I don't see why he needs to 'disconnect' the ammo feed since there seems to be more than enough room to not to, but I guess it depends on the particular weapon he's wielding. Too short an ammo feed is actually going to restrict the degree of movement the battle brother is going to have to use.

    I don't think 'Blessings' and stuff add to some degree of protection for armour (as in, some sort of supernatural element), it's more that it's actually just maintenance to keep things in working order that has become a ritual due to how crazy the 41st millennium is, but that's neither here nor there.
  6. Mhorge Mhorge Curator


    Sorry, you're confusing 'lore' with TT rules wise. I know, it's frustrating, people get up me for doing the same thing as well. And it's possible for motor's to jam too, it's still has to function in reality etc.
  7. I get your arguments Mhorge, but I feel there is a critical part you are over looking. The edge of an Astartes knife is described as monomolecule, but Astartes armor, and indeed the armor of many races, is thick. So while the edge may get into the armor there is an entire length of knife behind it that is not monomolecule, which means the equivelant of trying to force a text book through a slot the thickness of a sheet of paper. Put in real world terms if you put one of these knives in the hands of a normal human, the vast majority of people couldn't put a mono-edged knife far enough into someone wearing padded medieval plate to damage the person inside, and Astartes armor is far more resistant and structurally sound.

    Now as far as side arms go, there are some instances in both lore and codex description where Devastators still carry a bolt pistol as a side arm for those rare instances a close range solution becomes necessary for them. As has been said, for balance purposes Devastators, Havocs, Lootas, and Dark Reapers should all be thoroughly effed if a close combat specializing enemy gets that close to them, and even in table top and lore that typically ends up being the case. So from a lore, balance, rules, and real world physics stand point, no, a devastator would not attempt to detach his ammo feed to fight with a knife. He would kick his opponent back if possible and shoot with the heavy weapon, or support the heavy weapon one-handed and draw his pistol to shoot accurately at that close range.
  8. Mhorge Mhorge Curator

    Just by having a monomolecular weapon isn't going to mean it's going to be a hot knife through butter, the user is still going to have to use a bit of force in order to drive the point home. The combat knife isn't a mainstay weapon mainly because it's just a dagger (however sharp), vs weapons with a lot more reach and or killing power (such as power weapons which function on a level that splits armour apart), but it's still purpose built for combat, and can be used to inexpensively turn a weapon aside (parrying with a dagger isn't as easy as it sounds) or to quickly jam into joint sockets.

    I can get the argument that for balance purposes a Devastator is going to be able to kick and butt and push away enemies (that and realistically speaking, diverting resources to make the riggings on a model and animations where he drops the weapon in order to fight is going to be way too expensive to make), but the argument that Fox is making primarily, that it's a 'lore' reason why he wouldn't to be absolutely ridiculous. You're going to fight in the most efficient method possible, even as a Space Marine, and its asinine to suggest that you aren't going to want to keep your hands as free as possible when the situation arises in melee. With your hands free you can go for the opponents weapon for one at key points and you are obviously much more maneuverable as well. That's the point I'm trying to drive home, one of 'common sense' rather than strictly speaking 'lore' (although I can't imagine there'd be many cases of devastator's getting stuck in anyway) and books almost always follow the rule of cool anyway.
  9. the ammo feed doesn't stretch so if a dev were to drop his h bolter a good bit of weight would still be pulling on his back pulling him off balance thats a no go in a melee so he would have to detach the feed which is also a no go because it would take to long to reattach if he can even do that by himself also blessings do add protection in almost ever single book ive read at some point the only reason the marine lives is because of faith in the Emperor
  10. Fox Fox Active Member


    This is what you fail to understand. The knife ISN'T the most efficient melee weapon, even as a weapon of last resort. As I said, you don't know what you're talking about. The TT doesn't favor it. The novels don't favor it. The lore doesn't favor it. The novels consistently depict Space Marines PREFERRING to punch, kick, use their rifle butts, smash enemies with blunt objects over pulling out their knives.

    You don't know what you're talking about. It's as simple as that. As an Astartes, the most efficient weapons in melee combat, if you don't have an actual melee weapon, is your firearm followed by your own power armored fists and boots, NOT your combat knife.

    The combat knife is for stealth operations, used to kill enemies quietly, not direct combat when you have ANYTHING else available to you.

    If it was such an obvious tactic to use, where are the examples of it? Where does it read in a novel that the devastators "throw their heavy weapons away to stab people in melee combat"? There's plenty of battles where Space Marines are busy punching, kicking, and smashing the crap out of enemies.

    How about the video games?

    Dawn of War 1 - Tacticals with heavy weapons specifically DO NOT pull their knives out to fight while the tacticals with boltguns and special weapons, do.

    Dawn of War 2 - Devastators with heavy weapons punch enemies in melee combat. In fact, no one even has combat knives to begin with.

    Space Marine - Devastators don't even HAVE knives to use.

    You have no evidence other than your "common sense." Unfortunately for you, your common sense is wrong.
    DekArosaro likes this.

Share This Page