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Made in us
Monster-Slaying Daemonhunter




So in watching astartes, the fan film, I realized two things.

1. Astartes are WAY more powerful than I originally thought.

2. Humans have zero chance against them, even with extremely heavy weapons like ACs and heavy turbo-las thing(?) The only thing that really stops them is psykers. And that was basically a road bump.

So that got me thinking: If Heretic Astartes are supposed to be the equals if not superior in the fluff to regular Astartes, how do the Imperial Guard even hold the line? The books make it seem like they die to even bayonets, but honest question, how do guardsman fight or even stand against Traitor Astartes? Plasma rifles and Melta guns?
   
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Stormin' Stompa






You're forgetting that while individual squads of guardsmen are definitely no match for CSM, they are inevitably backed up by massed artillery, air support, battle tanks, and other heavy weapons amongst the special weapons you've mentioned. This also potentially includes Abhuman auxiliaries like Ogryn that can more than match a SM in terms of physical prowess.

Keep in mind that the Astartes film, while great, really shows only a relatively small cult that lacked ideal weaponry to take down Astartes. The thing you saw shooting at them was a multi-laser, which is all about high rate of fire and not armour penetration, which is why it did very little to power armour. In an actual engagement, there is going to be way more guardsmen and way more stuff going down a CSM's way, which is why they usually avoid pitched battles and have their cannon fodder of cultists/renegades muck up conventional imperial forces while striking at command centers, etc.
   
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Warning From Magnus? Not Listening!






Tanks, superior numbers, AT weapons, and deleting grid squares on a map with artillery.
   
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Pyromaniac Hellhound Pilot






Also note that the mutlilaser still forced the Astartes into cover. You can see multiple hits in his armor glowing that have to cool down.

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Monster-Slaying Daemonhunter




All the things you guys are mentioning are easier to delete for Astartes than the guardsmen are. Devestators or tanks for the tanks, Thunderbirds for the Artillery, etc. Also I really doubt any Ogryn is a "match" for an astartes.
   
Made in au
Regular Dakkanaut




Let’s turn this question into a logistical one. How many bolts can/does a space marine carry? Space Marine bolters are typically described as .75 calibre, which is approximately 20mm.

Here’s a size comparison for you:



The smaller cartridge is .50 cal, the larger is 20mm. The difference between the 2 within the setting would be the smaller being a Heavy Stubber round while the other is a bolt shell.

So, again, how many could/does a space marine carry? 300? Around that is fairly typical for assault rifle infantry today. Infantry today though typically have 5.56mm rounds which are maybe a quarter of the size of the .50 cal.

So even that’s maybe unreasonable. 150? Maybe? Considering some sources say they can be magnetically attached to the armour, so that eliminates pocket space issues. However they also carry a bolt pistol, a chainsword, frag grenades, krak grenades, smoke grenades, etc.

Let’s be generous and say 120.

Then you have to assume a space marine never misses, never uses covering fire, that the marines targets go down with only 1 bolt. Then and only then could each marine kill 120 GEQ’s with ranged combat alone.
   
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Warning From Magnus? Not Listening!






FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
All the things you guys are mentioning are easier to delete for Astartes than the guardsmen are. Devestators or tanks for the tanks, Thunderbirds for the Artillery, etc. Also I really doubt any Ogryn is a "match" for an astartes.

As soon as the Havocs fire they're revealed themselves and the rest of the armour squadron removes them from existence, an artillery position is going to be heavily defended by AA and be deep behind enemy lines so not an easy thing to destroy. As for Ogryns, they're roughly 9 feet tall, are immensely strong and tough, are super easy to indoctrinate at which point they become very stubborn, and either use huge rapid-fire shotguns, grenade launchers or power mauls. Pretty dangerous.
   
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Longtime Dakkanaut



London

Well witness a poor military today go up against the Yanks, Brits, French, etc. They get beaten. But they are still a threat. A lot of effort goes into attacks where the enemy can't defend well or attacks that rapidly degrade their ability to sustain and continue fighting.

Guard have unmatched firepower, CSM have orbital manoeuvrability. Guard units have to hope they have the supplies and force mix to win, because they basically are forced to fight to the end by a high command that has no way or matching the enemies speed. You use up formations fighting CSM hoping to do damage. Then replace the formations.
   
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[MOD]
Keeper of the Adeptus Arbites Flame






Cairo, Egypt

Figure it this way, most human armies, cults, gangs, PDF, lesser IG regiments have flamers, grenade launchers, maybe a missile launcher. And as long as you fighting similar forces that's fine.

But the sort of IG regiments sent to hold off the Chaos Marines, that's the sort of table top army you see with melta guns and plasma all over, maxed out vet squads, dropping Scions etc.

It's the difference between a SWAT Team, or the Trinidad and Tobago Defense Force and a full USMC Battalion.

 
   
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Powerful Pegasus Knight






Weight of bodies and fire power. Plasma gun is still a plasma gun, regardless whom wields it, same with a melta.

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Enginseer with a Wrench




Bath

FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
So in watching astartes, the fan film, I realized two things.

1. Astartes are WAY more powerful than I originally thought.

2. Humans have zero chance against them, even with extremely heavy weapons like ACs and heavy turbo-las thing(?) The only thing that really stops them is psykers. And that was basically a road bump.

So that got me thinking: If Heretic Astartes are supposed to be the equals if not superior in the fluff to regular Astartes, how do the Imperial Guard even hold the line? The books make it seem like they die to even bayonets, but honest question, how do guardsman fight or even stand against Traitor Astartes? Plasma rifles and Melta guns?


The situation in Astartes is basically almost optimum for the Rebributors, in that they are fighting a boarding action in an enclosed, channelled environment that prevents the enemy form making best use of his greater numbers, and reduces things to a series of head-to-head fights against a few squads at a time, all of which maximise the astartes strengths. And, while its not clear in the animation, i'm pretty sure those two psykers manage to kill several of the attacking marines when, its not "Just" a speed bump for them.

In a pitched battle planetside, the guard can bring a lot more firepower to bear via mutually supporting positions of crew served weapons covering pre-prepared kill zones, have vehicles and such in direct support and can call on that great leveller of war, artillery to pound an attacker. They can, and will gladly, trade a hundred to one in casualties with a marine attacker, because they can take that and more.


That said, Astartes, loyalist or traitor, very rarely engage in pitched battles. Canonically they make surgical strikes at certain high value targets with overwhelming force on that one specific target, wreak havoc then withdraw before the enemy can rally and flatten them with superior numbers. the old IA books like the taros campaign or the siege of vraks showcase this, the majority of the fighting being done by the Imperial Guard, with the marines being used for special forces strikes to disrupt the enemy, take out high value targets, smash penetrations of guard line, etc.

CSM warbands attacking a planet are normally just raiding, after supplies or slaves, and are not attacking heavily guarded positions. they come in, smash a company or two of guard, take what they wanted and get out before they are drowned in lasgun fire (which, in sufficent concentrations, 100% can kill astartes).

if Chaos is trying to invade a planet for conquest, the bulk of the attacking force is cultists that the CSM fight around, not pure CSM. very much like the loyalist in that regard.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/06/30 17:02:58


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But it's " Thin red line of 'eroes " when the drums begin to roll
The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
O it's " Thin red line of 'eroes, " when the drums begin to roll.
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Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut




Usually by three methods: judicial use of explosives, specialist squads, or the law of averages.

On the battlefield, IG will have tanks, planes, massive ordinance, the ability to call in orbital or artillery strikes, and so on. As tough as Space Marines, spikey or not, are, anti tank weapons tend to work as well on them as against tanks, with Rubric Marines or Death Guard being more resistant but having their own issues.

Some specialist units are arguably able to hold their own in fights against CSM's, though these tend to be exceptional individuals armed with exceptional weaponry against fairly average specimens, such as when the most dangerous named characters from Gaunt's Ghosts ambushed a CSM squad on a backwood planet and killed them all.

And the law of averages...well, you have enough lascannon heavy weapon teams, plasma, tank rounds, etc. flying around, odds are eventually a stray shot will pick someone off. Probably another reason CSMs and SMs hate the large scale grinding battlegrounds the IG find themselves in.
   
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Dakka Veteran





sorry but a 20mm cannon round would be FAR LARGER than a bolter round. The bolter round has to be small enough to fit into a bolter, and they have to be able to carry hundreds of them. Those 20mm cannon rounds are meant for firing out of a cannon mounted to a vehicle. Dont mistake the 20mm diameter for the actual cartridge.

An example would be a 7.62 tokarev round being compared to a full power 7.62 NATO rifle round. One of them is damn near 10x more energy on target and much larger, despite them both having the same diameter of a bullet.
   
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Last Remaining Whole C'Tan






The very very short answer?

You’re 100 psycho killer nutter unstoppable mentalists.

They’re 10,000 strong, fairly weedy as individuals. But have a better supply line. More mainline battle tanks than you have warriors. Possibly double you warrior count in “vaguely over there, ish” artillery which can soup/mist any of your warriors with an even vaguely direct hit.

And all the time, in a straight up battle, are pouring on individually inconsequential firepower. But just as I barely notice a single raindrop and even if do it doesn’t bother me? Make that trillions of cumulative shots. And you’ll understand how severe storms can end entire civilisations.

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Longtime Dakkanaut






AM have a life expectancy of about 10 mins. Heavy losses are expected.

They can have all the artillery they want but CSM aren’t the kind of army to stand still and let you bomb them.

Artillery won’t work against dread law drop pods, warp talons will take out artillery crews in the blink of an eye.

The problem for AM is they have to a cannon fodder horde army in the fluff because that makes SM look harder

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/07/01 22:28:25


 
   
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Revving Ravenwing Biker




New York City

I don't think Chaos Astartes can really be compared to an Astartes of the 41st millenium. Their equipment is salvaged, a lot of it old, and while there certainly are Astartes that have defected from the Imperium to join the Traitor Legions throughout the years, a large portion of them are still Heresy or pre-Heresy era Astartes. The way war was waged back then for the Legions I imagine; is very different from how war is waged by Chapters today. This difference is further exacerbated by the fact that traitor marines mostly operate as warbands nowadays. Pirating, banditry, raiding, insurgency, mercenary work, seems to be the MO of most traitor Astartes in the 41st millenium.

With all of the above being the case, I fail to see how any substantial IG force can have their will denied by anything less than a really large Chaos Warband with substantial auxilliary elements. Of course, there would be outliers and exceptions. But if I was a betting man, I'd bet on the IG if any type of large scale battle is is to materialize between the two factions.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/07/01 22:44:34


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Giggling Nurgling





Sniper fire, longlas style.

Its canon that lasguns can punch in through weak points in power armor, namely joints or spots already damaged sufficiently to allow las shots through. Its even been mentioned in at least one short story I read a long, long time ago that longlas shots to the throat armor of Astartes power armor can and will down a space marine with the added bonus of destroying the geneseed located in that area (if they haven't retconned and moved it somewhere else).

While not as grandiose as an artillery barrage or a regiment of tanks rolling up or even as awe inspiring as a display of warp-spawned shenanigans, a well placed sniper can down some big nasties pretty quickly regardless of side.
   
Made in au
Regular Dakkanaut




warpedpig wrote:
sorry but a 20mm cannon round would be FAR LARGER than a bolter round. The bolter round has to be small enough to fit into a bolter, and they have to be able to carry hundreds of them. Those 20mm cannon rounds are meant for firing out of a cannon mounted to a vehicle. Dont mistake the 20mm diameter for the actual cartridge.

An example would be a 7.62 tokarev round being compared to a full power 7.62 NATO rifle round. One of them is damn near 10x more energy on target and much larger, despite them both having the same diameter of a bullet.


A bolt would be shorter yes, but it's a 20mm. They'd probably look more akin to the Neopup 20mm grenades. So shorter, but much fatter.

A Neopup 6-7 grenades, but that’s a human sized weapon not astartes. So a 30 round box magazine could be possible. The next problem is, the bolter isn’t a grenade launcher, it’s more like an automatic RPG. Which means that bolts size will increase to have more propellant to actually travel. Still equating to the same logistical issues.

* * * * *


In terms of Guard fighting marines. It's pretty simple. Lasguns are used to distract marines, while the special weapon operator or heavy weapon operator try and get the kill. Anything that can kill tanks can kill marines, and guard are good at killing tanks.

Missile launchers, lascannons, plasma guns, melta guns, etc. Then there's the vehicles, that don't really need any mention really. A battle cannon firing an armour piercing round directly into a marine should 100% drop them.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2021/07/02 00:43:46


 
   
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Exalted Beastlord




Numbers of guns. And chaos marines fight as warbands or even advisors and not, for the most part, as legions.

Efficiency is the highest virtue. 
   
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Jinking Ravenwing Land Speeder Pilot



Canada

Bayonets.

All you have to do is fire three rounds a minute, and stand 
   
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Longtime Dakkanaut





 LumenPraebeo wrote:
I don't think Chaos Astartes can really be compared to an Astartes of the 41st millenium. Their equipment is salvaged, a lot of it old, and while there certainly are Astartes that have defected from the Imperium to join the Traitor Legions throughout the years, a large portion of them are still Heresy or pre-Heresy era Astartes. The way war was waged back then for the Legions I imagine; is very different from how war is waged by Chapters today. This difference is further exacerbated by the fact that traitor marines mostly operate as warbands nowadays. Pirating, banditry, raiding, insurgency, mercenary work, seems to be the MO of most traitor Astartes in the 41st millenium.

With all of the above being the case, I fail to see how any substantial IG force can have their will denied by anything less than a really large Chaos Warband with substantial auxilliary elements. Of course, there would be outliers and exceptions. But if I was a betting man, I'd bet on the IG if any type of large scale battle is is to materialize between the two factions.


Correct, the traitor legions fought war differently to how marines would do it now. By which I mean they were/are vastly superior. They traitor legions are still full of soldiers that fought by the side the primarchs and the emperor and learned their craft from them. And now have 10k years more experience.

1 veteran of the long war is worth 100 astartes and a 1000 guardsmen.

All of these responses for AM standing their ground against CSM seem to be based on the notion of to entrenched armies opposed on a battlefield. One a large regiment and the other a warband of unknown size but probably 10s of marines?

This wouldn’t happen, in the same way DE wouldn’t take up such a position on a battlefield.

If CSM went to war with legion sized numbers, like the black legion, they would have artillery, arial support, tanks etc just like AM.
   
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Pyromaniac Hellhound Pilot






But the IG would still have vastly more... if the CSM come as a Legion they are a Major threat and will likely get hundreds to thousands of Regiments deployed against them.

You can't have both. Either they do surgical strikes, where the IG cannot entrench and outnumber them too massively: there (C)SM would win, not Problem with that. But they would get into trouble when they linger to long and it might turn into a war of attrition, facing thousands upon thousands of Guardsmen with their equipment.

The other way around: yes they can come as a legion with tanks, air Support etc. pp. But then they cannot do this "quick lightning strike and then back off" approach that good anymore. And they will face the combined regiments and fleets of sectors or even whole segmentums.

And as you implied: their fighting power is significantly bolstered by their millenia old veterans. Which also means loosing any of those hurts them much much more than other forces. 10% losses of those veterans could be called catastrophic, because they can never get those back. IG can loose 90% and have them back in a couple of tithes.

I think (this is only my personal opinion) the later is the main reason why the Traitor Astartes relatively seldom (in the black crusades for example) go full head on against the Imperium and stay in the fight. Because they can't really afford to trade losses when it comes to their veterans. It's a statistical wonder that after 10 millenia they are still some left at all.

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Longtime Dakkanaut





I think you can have both, alpha legion can infiltrate and take set you up to fail before you line up against again abbadons main force.

   
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Pyromaniac Hellhound Pilot






But "before Abadons main force" still means he comes in force. When he comes in force, lots of Traitor Astartes (that are hard to replace) are in one spot. If a lot of them are in one spot, it is effective ressource use to throw a lot of force against them. If that is efficient, the Imperium deploys thousands of regiments.

And again, correct me if I'm wrong, but how many Veterans of the 10 Millenia war are still around after the purging following the heresy and... 10 millenia of war? Not enough that they can really afford to loose any of them, right?

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Longtime Dakkanaut





AM’s only tactic overwhelming force. If this always wins then AM are the only unbeatable for e in the galaxy because of you want to land forces on a planet then you are going to have to meet those overwhelming forces.

CSM are not the kind of foe that meet you on your terms. If they have no choice but to meet the overwhelming force head on, what you do if you have access to the forces of chaos. Send in wave after wave of demons? Corrupt half of the AM soldiers turn them over to your side? Make them fight amongst each other or just virus bomb the planet.

I agree that if you just met AM on their terms ,head on, the would bomb you to smitherines. I just don’t think that’s a story that plays out in 40k
   
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Pyromaniac Hellhound Pilot






The initial question was "How do Guard hold back Traitor legions?" my personal answer would be "by attrition, because they can take losses, the Traitors can't".
CSM can and will win on their terms and usually are able to fight on their terms. But it is difficult holding anything in real space without getting into wars of attrition. And that is AM terms of war.

AMs are not limited to overwelming force, but they are - given enough time - able to exert it against most enemies. And this "given enough time" is what happens if you try to conquer and hold a planet. A feat that chaos usually achieves with renegades and Cultists, because however strong you are it takes time to take a planet and "pacify" it.

It has repeatedly been implied that power armored veterans would could not be killed by mere mortals (at least that was my Impression), yet the exact weapons (C)SM use to kill each other (Plasma, Melta, (heavy) Bolters, Missile Launchers, Autocannons and bigger guns) are all heavily present in the Astra Militarum. So at least in my opinion it is pretty clear how they can stand against CSM.


Don't get me wrong: I fully agree that in the scale of a single battle or skirmish, chances for the AM are very very slim, because I also agree that CSM should usually be able to fight on their terms. But I disagree that CSM can beat the AM on a large, planet or even sector scale without the help of masses of mortal followers due to their still limited numbers (even when showing up in Legion force), their inability to replace losses of their veterans (the millenia old ones) and the inability to be present everywhere (again due to their relatively low numbers).

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Longtime Dakkanaut




Most of the CSM incursions into the Imperium are conducted for reasons other than conventional territorial conquest. Many of the attacks are raids for resources such as slaves, or geneseed. Often they are for the purposes of gaining favor from the Chaos gods, and thus may involve mystical goals such as conducting a ritual, sacrificing whole populations, or targeting items and sites of spiritual significance to either Chaos or the Imperium. Some might be simply to damage the Imperium to get some measure of revenge.

However in nearly all the fiction depicting the CSM, they don't hang around and actually conquer and rule planets for any length of time, at least not unless some warp phenomena such as warp storms effectively turn the world into a daemon world and giving easy ongoing access to daemonic reinforcements. If an Imperial world is conventionally conquered through a combination of CSM, cultists, and/or traitor fleet elements, the Imperium will eventually respond and in ever escalating numbers and generally Chaos forces cannot sustain that level of attrition. Large forces of daemons cannot be easily sustained without warp storms or lots of ritualistic worship, monument building, and sacrifices as shown by the example of Angron upon Armageddon. CSM also seem to be on the whole brutal and contemptuous of their normal human followers and areas taken over by CSM seem to turn into hellholes or feral world equivalents, as the more extreme elements of the Chaos gods warp the world or the CSM let the rest of their conquered subjects' infrastructure fall away due to neglect.
   
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Assassin with Black Lotus Poison





Bristol

Magnetically sticking a load of rounds to the front of your armour when said rounds use a solid state rocket as their means of propulsion and your foe is firing high intensity lasers at it, which can heat the armour to the point that it glows, seems like a really bad move.

Wonder how many marines die due to their magazines cooking off and firing their own bolts into themselves and their comrades.

This message was edited 2 times. Last update was at 2021/07/02 11:40:05


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Longtime Dakkanaut





Some good point in here GW just don’t talk much about traitor guard or cultists which could be forces of equal size and ability as the AM. The blood pact is the only real example that’s useful but they have a navy space stations planets full of warriors etc
   
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Pyromaniac Hellhound Pilot






The Gaunts Ghost novels also mention the sons of sekh

Also I just realized that I might seem unfair against the CSM: my opinion for loyalist SM vs. the bulk of Renegade and Heretic/Cultist forces is the same. However better the glory boys are compared to a mortal, they cannot take and/or hold a planet from/against millions of mortal Chaos followers without the help of some "meat" that can do the occupation job. Loosing a "fresh" Primaris marine might hurt the Chapter a bit less than it hurts CSM to loose one of their irreplacable 10millenia Veterans, but it is still a loss that will take significant ressources and time to replenish.
Almost everything I mentioned "critizing" CSM is also applyable for SM.

Edit: I think the total numbers of traitor Guard and Renegades should be lower than AM, but they can concentrate much better as they don't have to protect a million worlds all over the place. So in any given theater they should be capable of matching AM numbers, if the Chaos Forces are really committed. And then we have a fair playing field again. The "meat" occupy each other and the (C)SM do the decisive Strikes that tip the balance into one direction or the other

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2021/07/02 13:07:20


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