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Fist of the Imperium [Space Marine tactics]

[Content from Firepower #3 page 7 to 13.]

By Emil Kartalov

As promised in the last issue of Firepower, we continue a series of in-depth tactics articles. Emil has moved on from commanding his Eldar host to using a pure Space Marine force. Here he offers his advice on using the Emperor's finest to crush any foe, without the aid of Imperial Guard artillery!

For those who may be unfamiliar with such slang, 'cheese' in this article roughly means 'power gaming to the point that it spoils the game'.

'Let the Space Marines be Space Marines'

After playing Eldar for quite a while in Epic 40,000, I bought and started playing the Space Marines. One of my motives was that the Space Marines are an army which works very differently from Eldar; thus the experience would help me broaden my horizons. If there is one single dominant feature in the Space Marine army lists, it unquestionably is versatility. The pillar of the army is the Space Marine Tactical squad and its upgrades, all of which combine excellent armour, good Firepower, decent Range, and savage Assault values.

The upside of versatility is that if you lead a Space Marines army you do not need to spend nearly as much time in your Reclusium customising your army for each different opponent, since whatever balanced force you choose should be able to do well against any opponent. The Space Marines are the least 'surprisable' army in the game.

The down side of versatility is that you always pay for it in points regardless of the fact whether you have customised your force or not. Suppose for example that you buy Space Marines to shoot with. Unfortunately you pay not simply for their Firepower and Range, but also for their other boosted statistics. Thus the Space Marines are never cost-efficient if assigned to specific tasks, but are always cost-efficient if they end up doing almost everything in a battle.

The conclusion to be drawn is that you must let the Space Marines be Space Marines to maximise efficiency. This means you should not be afraid to be shot or close-assaulted while you keep your Space Marines on Overwatch orders to utilise Rapid Fire. Most bullets bounce off Space Marine armour. Even if you lose the close combats, it will not be by much, and stubbornness ensures that next turn you will be on overwatch again. Thus you simultaneously use all their special abilities. If you lead your Space Marines thusly, is defeat really a possibility?

This profound wisdom is at the heart of the fighting methods of my Space Marines. It asserts the worth of big tactical companies, which should be kept on overwatch. That means they should be quickly deployed in good firing positions, so that they can spend the rest of the battle showering the enemy with torrents of rapid fire. The way to do that is to employ that rare gift, the cheap, fast, and spacious Rhino. All you do is march on the first turn and unload in a broad front. Then let the bolters do their job.

The Space Marines have many fine vehicles, e.g. the best tank in the game, the Land Raider. In my opinion though, the tanks' mission is to support the infantry, which should always be the bulk of the force. Resist the temptation to build ypur army around Land Raiders, Predators, and Whirlwinds. It is not that infantry exists to protect the vehicles, it is that vehicles exist to support the infantry.

Due to the unreliability of reserves, drop pods should be used sparingly, only for very specific tasks, e.g. take out the enemy artillery or encircle his flank. The good news is that they are free!

Thunderhawks are definitely too expensive to be used for transportation when you have free drop pods. They are the best bombers about though. Unfortunately, I very seldom get to see them more than once per battle in a 2,000 point game. By the fourth turn, the battle is usually already decided. The only good use they have is to show up once to take out a key enemy detachment, e.g. artillery. The Space Marines are basically a 45cm range army, so Thunderhawks are the Space Marine siege artillery.

Space Marine tactics

The Rhino Shield

This curious Space Marine property was first noticed by Glenn. Once the Space Marines have marched and debussed [disembarked/unloaded] into good firing positions, the Rhinos lose a lot of their worth, since their main task, transportation, has been fulfilled. A way to utilise the empty Rhinos is to advance them in front of the Space Marines, so that they catch bullets instead of the Space Marines, since they have the same Armour [value] of 5+.

The problem that Glenn saw with this was that if the Space Marine line gets assaulted, the Rhinos being in front will lose the assault for the Space Marines with their [Assault] value of zero.

In the opposite arrangement, with the Rhinos behind the Rhinos will at least support the troops.

I developed that idea into the conviction that it is in fact preferable for the Rhinos to be in front unconditionally. Since shooting happens before assaults, chances are that many of the Rhinos will be dead before the assault phase instead of Space Marines. Then the enemy assaults and kills Rhinos instead of Space Marines. The down side is they put more blast markers since the Rhinos fight poorly. The summary goes like this:

  1. Rhinos back, more Space Marines are shot dead, more hits are put on Space Marines in close combat, fewer Space Marines on overwatch next turn.
  2. Rhinos front, fewer Space Marines are shot dead, fewer Space Marines take hits in close combat, more Space Marines on overwatch next turn, a couple more blast markers are put on the Space Marine detachment.

The astute might point out that the attacker allocates Close Combat hits and thus could preferentially choose Space Marines over Rhinos. I counter by pointing out that if the Rhinos aren't destroyed then they interfere with later attempts to kill Space Marines and if all the Space Marines die before you kill the Rhinos then those Rhinos will motor away at top speed and you'll never wipe them out before they have removed all their Blast markers.

In my opinion it is much more important to preserve the life force of the tactical company rather than receive a couple fewer Blast markers. Combat experience has proven the wisdom of this conclusion against most armies. The Tyranids are a notable exception and are discussed specially in the strategy section [at Stomp Tyranids!].

The Firefight Sneak

A problem that the Space Marines face against close combat armies of low Firepower value is that it is so beneficial to be on Overwatch that it is a waste to put them on Assault orders just to firefight back the assault wave before it hits them. A Space Marine Tactical squad has four times(!!) less firepower on assault than it has on overwatch.

(Emil is referencing their firepower during the fire shooting phase of the turn. They will still firefight with their full normal firepower.)

One way to deal with this is to buy a Bike force or jump-packed [Jump Packs equipped] Assault squad to do the job, while the Tactical companies are invariably on Overwatch.

I stumbled over a subtler and sneakier way to do it, which helps the tacticals [Tactical squads] to do everything by themselves. In many cases it is possible to sneak up on the enemy using the Overwatch 5cm move to close up on him within 15cm. Then Overwatch goes normally, but winning initiative in the assault phase means the Overwatching Space Marines firefight away the wave. Thus no Bike force or Assault squads are necessary.


This is a counter-intuitive effect of firing [shooting] rules. We stumbled over it in my gaming group. Suppose your Space Marine line of six Tactical and two Devastator squads [units] faces a triangle of Orks, which points towards them with one of its vertices. Suppose all Tacticals [that the Tactical units] are only within range of a couple of Ork units, whereas the Devastator [units] have all [of] the Ork [units] in range. According to [the] rules, you roll eight dice in the open on overwatch and allocate hits regardless of the fact that all six Tactical [units] are really too far away from all but two Ork units. This is very counter-intuitive at least for somebody like me, who comes from the point-to-point shots system of Epic Space Marine. A way to think about it is that the Devastators effectively increase the range of the Tactical [units] to 45cm. Barring cheese, you should consider this effect in creating your Space Marine Tactical detachments. The Devastators suddenly became even more attractive. The term 'suppression' derives from the rationale Sean Upchurch came up with about this effect: the Tacticals fulfil a 'keep their heads down' order by providing suppressing fire, which allows the Devastators the breathing space necessary to take very rapid and accurate pot shots.

(Here, Emil spares you the whole story. The real complete story? Take those Orks who are barely in range of the Tactical [units] and put them into cover. Put the rest of the detachment out of cover but still in range of the Devastators. No prize to those who can email and tell me why this makes a difference. The lesson? Read your rulebooks carefully and follow the directions.)

Fake Disruptors

This is the way the Space Marines compensate for not having any disruptors [units with the Disrupt ability]. You basically split the firepower of each of your Tactical detachments among as many opponent detachments as possible, but still having a good chance to get hits. Thus each enemy detachment gets a Blast marker for taking a hit. The next Tactical detachment repeats the procedure. The result is a big number of enemy detachments with a lot of Blast marker each.

To increase this effect, also supply my Tactical companies with a certain degree of autonomy from my armoured company, I include a Support Weapon (Tarantula/Rapier) in each, as a hit gets an additional Blast marker as from a super heavy weapon.

The only down-side of this trick is that it assumes there is not an enemy detachment which you really want to unload on before it has fired back. Barring this exception however, this is a pretty useful trick.

Hard points

This is the property of the Space Marine army to have the highest availability of units with saves [the Save ability] among Imperial armies. Terminators, Captains, and Librarians form hard points in terms of survivability against fire [shooting], close combat and wipe-out. I like boosting up my Tactical companies with all three types. The +10 points for a Captain are more than well spent on a Save, 6 assault [an Assault value of 6], and free Jump Packs. The Librarian is the same deal as 10 out of the +20 is the standard for being a Psyker. A Terminator [unit's] doubled longevity is more than well worth the +4 points. Glenn was the first to make the most spectacular use out of all this. His tank company got stomped by a Tyranid assault. The Tyranids were ready to declare a wipe-out, score the Blast markers and add half the company's morale points to their morale, when the Space Marine Captain escaped from the wrecked command Land Raider and ran away on his Jump Packs with all the Blast markers. Hmmm… Jump Packs equipped units inside Land Raiders, really?


This is how you fully mechanise a Tactical company solely with Rhinos. I got this trick from Glenn.

The problem is that the detachment structure does not allow you to buy extra Rhinos to transport Terminators and Anti-tank Support Weapons. A way to go around it is to buy Land Raiders, but a lot of Land Raiders quickly approaches cheese, and also slows down the entire company to 20cm from the 30cm of the Rhino. Razorbacks are fast, but inefficient transport-wise.

The trick is to sacrifice the free Jump Packs of both the officers in the company and make them buy a Rhino each. That opens two spaces for Terminators and/or a Support Weapon.

Imperial Terror

As I had the chance to mention in my writing on Eldar strategy, some units are much more worth it for the purely psychological terrorising effect on the opponent, than they are for what they can actually do. The Whirlwinds being the only Barrage weapon in the Space Marine army are an example of terror troops. Whenever you have them, the opponent always thinks twice before bunching up his troops.

The fact that the entire enemy assault wave is staggered over 30cm in depth rather than 10cm for fear of the Whirlwinds is much more valuable to me as the Space Marine commander than the extra die or two I would roll otherwise, since low assault wave density means many will not make it to assault my Space Marines. Thus more Space Marines survive the fight and more Space Marines overwatch next turn.

All you have to do is find the balance between not being cheesy and having enough weight in Whirlwinds to scare the opponent. Up to this point, two whirlwinds in each of my three mechanised Tactical companies have always been enough. That will probably change if my gaming group reads this.

The Imperial Titans are another example. They are tough enough to convince the opponent that they are practically indestructible, so they are ignored, which ironically makes them indestructible.

Contrary to expectations, the Land Raiders are not terrorisers. They are just as dangerous as they look. Treasure them, but beware of cheese.

Thunderhawks as bombers are the bane of any interceptor except a swarm of Gargoyles.


I already talked about containment in General Eldar Strategy. The same idea can be utilised by the Space Marines with two important corrections.

First, the Space Marine Jump Packs [equipped units] are not nearly as cool as the Eldar ones and the Space Marine Assault troops are more expensive and less savage than fully upgraded Swooping Hawks. As most of the casualties in Jump Packs [equipped] detachments come from close combat, the Space Marine Assault troops are just not that good. In my opinion they are just too expensive to be used as containment troops, since expendability is a primary requirement. There is no point to sacrifice a more expensive unit to protect a less expensive one, and that is exactly what you will end up doing if you protect the Tactical troops with Assault marines.

Second, the normal Bikes and Attack Bikes, while not skimmers are in my opinion better than the Eldar Jet Bikes and Vypers. At least in my gaming group, we almost never play on a board where skimming is of a big value, as we do not want to get the slow-moving armies handicapped any further than they are by [their] nature. We also pop up at the beginning of the shooting phase for realism. With skimming out of the way, the Attack Bike beats all records of efficiency at merely 10 points. It is as good as a Vyper at less than half the price!

In my opinion, containment is the primary role of the Bike force, so it has to include Attack Bikes. Against units of low Assault [value], a Bike detachment of normal Bikes supported by Vindicators is worth trying.

Morale dumps

At the advent of Epic 40,000 all Imperials were pleasantly surprised by the toughness of the Imperial Titans. They are tough to shoot down and reasonably tough to kill by assault. That makes them a nice storage facility for morale. Against most armies, reasonable Blast marker removal rolls mean the Titan keeps you in combat for one extra turn when everything else of yours is below half strength. Beware of taking them against Tyranids — they are the army which kills Imperial Titans most easily, the Titan will switch from being the hunter to the hunted.

The same effect can be achieved by means of big and/or tough air detachments. I cannot remember the last time my Thunderhawk 'Nuclear Death' detachment got reduced to half strength.

The really big win for the Space Marines in this respect is the ability to have very big companies of very tough troops. My standard mechanised Tactical companies contain over twenty units of Armour [value] 5+ or better. Such a detachment costs a lot and is very tough to break.

Thus a well-constructed Space Marine force has this dump effect intrinsically and at no extra cost; in fact, you are paid for it as you buy fewer HQs.

Titan armament

In my opinion, the only two worthy weapons are Death rays and Heavy Weapons Batteries.

A Vortex [Missile] is good only if you are absolutely certain that the opponent will take shielded war engines. Close Combat Weapons would have been worth it if they doubled the Assault value against any unit.

Titan barrages [Barrage weapons] are a waste of points when you have Whirlwinds, and you always will if you are wise. Besides, Titan barrages lack the Artillery special ability. Finally, your opponent is likely to be spread out due to your Whirlwinds, which further decreases the effectiveness of your Titan barrages. Megacannons seem lucrative for extra Blast markers, but this is only an illusion. I believe one less Blast marker is less important than putting a hit on an enemy psyker or commander [up to] 60cm away on 2+ instead of 5+ or 6+.

The combination of Heavy Weapons Batteries and Death Rays means you can handle anything. You cannot [won't] lose Death Ray shots due to Blast markers. You are unlikely to lose firefights.


Some armies have very high value assault troops without saves (e.g. Genestealers and Exarch Aspect Warriors). For those, a marginal victory in close combat is a loss, since they will be the first to receive hits, and hits kill them.

The size of the Space Marine companies and the Space Marines high Assault value are truly devastating against such troops. It is even worse if you follow my example and take as many officers as possible with a lot of Terminators, since saves negate a lot of the bad consequences of losing an assault i.e. being killed!

It is a unique property of the Space Marines to be most able of all armies to survive and recover from losing an assault exactly due to such factors. Attrition is most effective against Tyranids and Eldar, but Chaos can also be affected as a Terminator is almost as good as a daemon in Assault [value] (3 instead of 4) particularly due to its Save [ability].

Detachment samples

Tactical Companies

Sample 1: Captain, Librarian, 2 Terminator units, 6 Tactical units, 5 Rhinos, 1 Support Weapon, 1 Razorback, 2 Whirlwinds.

Sample 2: Captain, Librarian, 2 Terminator units, 4 Tactical units, 2 Devastator units, 5 Rhinos, 1 Support Weapon, 1 Razorback, 2 Whirlwinds.

Sample 3: Captain, Librarian, 1 Terminator unit, 1 Support Weapon, 4 Tactical units, 4 Devastators, 6 Rhinos, 2 Whirlwinds.

Bike force

Sample 1: 3 Bikes, 9 Attack Bikes.

Sample 2: Librarian on Bike, 12 Attack Bikes.

Sample 3: Librarian on Bike, 10 Bikes, 5 Vindicators

Armoured force

Sample 1: Captain with Jump Packs, 4 Land Raiders, 3 Predators.

Sample 2: Captain with Jump Packs, 5 Land Raiders, 2 Predators.

Terminator assault drop force

Captain with Jump Packs, Librarian with Jump Packs, 10 Terminator units.

Assault drop force

Captain with Jump Packs, Librarian with Jump Packs, 14 Assault units with Jump Packs.

Space Marine strategy

Stomp Chaos!

Attack Bikes are a must as containment for the daemons. The Assault [units] are terribly expensive for this, especially as daemons have saves [the Save ability]. The second biggest threat are the Nurgle Engines and Thunderhawks are the only way to get rid of them. A Reaver [Titan] can hold a flank against anything but Greater Daemons. Use the Land Raiders to pick out the Knights and Chaos Space Marines; leave the daemons to the Tactical [units] and Heavy Weapons Batteries as daemon Armour [value] is 4+ anyway.

Have a good number of Devastator [units] or your Tactical [units] may end up defenceless against Noise Chaos Space Marines and Knights. Death Ray that annoying Supreme Commander. Terminators and officers are a must due to attrition effects. Fake disrupters are very effective since nothing is more devastating to Chaos than daemon waves frozen with Blast markers. Rip daemons with Heavy Weapons Batteries and Death Ray the Chaos Space Marine Land Raiders from a safe distance.

Try to keep your infantry in buildings as then they are untouchable to cavalry-class daemons. Always consider preparatory barrages as the Space Marines will be on Overwatch [orders] anyway, especially when facing Greater Daemons who will otherwise run away out of range.

Firelight sneaks can be frighteningly effective.

Bloodthirsters and Lords of Change are how Imperial Titans die; only shielding helps since those monsters can charge 75cm! In my opinion that is quite unreasonable. Nobody can convince me that something should be able to charge my Titan from outside its Death Ray range!

Stomp Orks!

I am afraid [that] the Orks are the army designed to be beaten by the Space Marines. The Space Marines just are better at everything. The only challenge is presented by the Big Gunz and the Pulsa Rokkitz, but there are enough Anti-tank and Death Ray [weapons] in a Space Marine force to pick them out. Death Ray the Ork Warlord and Anti-tank the Weirdboyz (no Save!). There is no point to a Drop Pod attack. There is no point to a bomb attack by your Thunderhawks against Gargants, since they will always have enough shielding. Containment with Attack Bikes may be necessary to keep the Land Raiders safe. It is my hope that there can be a greater challenge if I do not take a Titan and the Orks take a Gargant and Death Ray[-equipped] Speedstas.

Recently our Ork player started developing a Gretchin shield. Basically Gretchin catch bullets for the Nobz, Skarboyz, Shooty Boyz, Big Gunz, and Pulsa Rokkitz in the same detachment. The strategy seems pretty effective. A way to counteract it is to use firefight containment tactics with a Bike detachment of Attack Bikes. One must be careful to be barely within 15cm of the Gretchin, so that the Bikes firelight only the Gretchin rather than the entire Orky wave behind them.

Stomp Imperial Guard!

The only real problem is Imperial Guard artillery and there are three good ways to deal with it: Assault drop, Terminator drop, and Thunderhawk 'Nuclear Death' 'em. The Land Raiders should dispatch the Leman Russes. I expect the Tactical companies to wipe out the Imperial Guard infantry line in two turns of overwatch fire. Then the rest is a mopping-up job. The Space Marines are particularly resistant to Imperial Guard artillery as each Marine has tank armour. The Imperial Guard infantry is particularly vulnerable to rapid-firing Space Marines as their army structure makes Imperial Guard detachments small, and therefore susceptible to being wiped out. This is probably the only case when Rhinos should be behind the Space Marines, as once the Imperial Guard infantry line collapses, you may need the Rhinos to transport the tactical troops to attack the Imperial Guard artillery.

I believe [that] assault dropping is important regardless of the presence or absence of artillery. If skilfully done, a Terminator drop can cut out the retreat path of a whole Imperial Guard flank and assaults look very scary in the eyes of artillery pieces and Guardsmen.

I think taking a Titan is just too big a risk primarily due to the ever-present threat of Deathstrike Missile Launcher [units]. I believe strongly in Thunderhawks, since they are flexible brutal virtually-indestructible terrorisers and allow you to play a waiting game. I think bikes are a waste of time, as their primary task is firefight containment and Imperial Guard will never really try to assault Space Marines en masse.

I am starting to develop a very evil new drop tactic. It contains Terminators and Anti-tank Support [Weapon] platforms. The Terminators form a shield against a counter-assault, and take fire [shooting] hits for the Support Weapons (and hopefully make their saves). The Anti-tank shots take out the artillery pieces, leaving any shielding units and Hydras intact.

You can drop Devastators for the same purpose, but at 26 points for two Anti-tank shots and two separate units versus 20 points for one unit with one shot, Tarantulas are roughly twice the value. This fails to take into account the errata in Firepower #1 which increased the cost of Anti-tank units. Later magazine articles often missed this.

Stomp Tyranids!

The chief problem with the bugs is their ability to drop in large numbers. They can drop all their infantry plus Disrupt [units] like Biovores. This means that establishing a line will only get you encircled and eaten.

In my opinion, a mobile strategy with the Space Marines when fighting the bugs is a fiction, as they are very slow without their Rhinos and loading and unloading units leaves too much to initiative counters. A loading and unloading Rhino moves 20cm, which is less than the move+charge rate of any bug. You also need base-to-base contact and you sacrifice your Rapid Fire. It just does not work with Tactical companies.

The conclusion is that you need to form a bubble of Tactical and Terminator [units], with all the guns sticking out like the barbs of a hedgehog. The core of the bubble is Devastators, Whirlwinds, and Land Raiders. Ideally the bubble should be in open ground, so that different detachments can support each other with fire, and at least 30cm away from any buildings or forests, so that nothing can assault out of cover without being shot at first.

A Titan is definitely necessary for morale storage. Heavy Weapons Batteries are great against little bugs. The terror factor makes the bugs try to go around the Titan, so a Titan is good for holding a flank. This will work until the Tyranid commander realises how fragile in close combat the Titans actually are. Two big things you pay points for with your Titan are, repairable void shields and good armour, but neither of these will help you when Genestealers start jumping on your Reaver [Titan], followed by a Hive Tyrant. In the best case the bugs will be only have a +1 advantage, but if they use Biovores on your Titan, they may easily be at a +4 advantage. That is one broken (and probably) dead Titan.

The bugs have one major bane and it's name is Space Marine Tactical squads. Just keep them on Overwatch [orders] and kick out as many Blast markers as possible, since those are what will eventually lose the battle for the bugs on the fourth or fifth turn. Fake Disrupters! The big tactical companies are hard to wipe out, so the bugs are really suffocating towards the end of the third turn. Forget about containment, Bikes, Assault [units], and all the vehicles but Land Raiders and Whirlwinds. Attrition is the way to beat Tyranids. Once the Genestealers are dead, the assault total [Assault value] of Tyranid detachments drops by half. Since the Tyranids are fast, Devastators are a must especially for suppression as described above.

Hard earned battle experience has indicated that the Rhino shield does not work against the bugs. Six Rhinos in front means 12 more positions for the bugs to attack. The average Assault value of the bug is 4, so that means +48 in Asault value; that probably means another +1 modifier and more hits taken by your valuable Tactical troops. It also increases the depth of the your belt without improving the range. Thus bugs, which normally would not have made it into close combat, will. Forget about Rhinos altogether against the bugs, or they will lose the battle for you!

Unfortunately, the lack of Rhinos means you are very slow. Hence you must consider a Bike force and Jump Packs [equipped] Assault troops especially to take out any annoying Biovore detachment in Mycetic Spores that will always drop into a forest out of range of your Whirlwinds and shell you on Overwatch [orders] for the rest of the game.

Now something completely bizarre: I do not try [Anti-tank shots against] synapse creatures; instead, I concentrate on killing Carnifexes. [Your opponent] will always have enough synapse creatures to absorb the losses. Carnifexes are rampaging tanks and it is assault dice that will kill you in the end. Putting hits on a Hive Tyrant is just asking for the big bug to make its Save. Every shot counts, do not waste any. A dead bug now is better than a chance at a dead bigger bug. You must mow them down quickly and methodically.

In the same way, do not put hits on Tyranid Warriors in close combat, but on Genestealers.

Then it is very likely that you will emerge battered but victorious, which is very typical of Space Marines.

A standard bug strategy is to hide behind hills and in forests in expectation of the assault phase, when they are guaranteed to move. A sure way to spoil this tactic is to load up on Whirlwinds. I am always extremely tempted to do so and it does take a lot of effort to limit myself to two Whirlwinds in each of my three identical tactical companies.

Finally, I must fulfil my sacred duty to the Emperor by warning you about the bug artillery. All have 60cm range. That means that if you, like me, try to lead a pure Space Marine force, you are always at a great disadvantage, as the Space Marines are a 45cm range army.

Thus a Dactylis at 32 points is as good a barrage against Space Marines as an Imperial Guard Basilisk at 41 points, is twice as hard to bomb as it has 6+ armour, and is much tougher with an Assault [value] of 2. I cannot think of a more efficient unit in the entire bug army!

The Biovores can drop onto the board and will always be exactly where they need to be. They will literally bleed your morale out and there is nothing you can do about it unless you take some assault troops, but then guess who gets disrupted?

With five Blast markers even being Stubborn means less than a 1 in 3 chance that the detachment will move.

Stomp Eldar!

I have not faced Eldar yet mostly because I was the regular Eldar player in my group before I switched to Space Marines. Here are some ideas though. Assault Aspect Warriors should be susceptible to attrition because they lack a save. The Eldar have the blight of small detachments and a wipe-out penalty; that should make them really hurt when they face the Space Marine Tactical companies. The Space Marines have enough firepower to make Titans fail holo-field saves enough to take them down.

The Land Raiders should sneak in range under cover or they will really suffer from Pulsar fire. The mission of the Land Raiders is to blow up the Titan and any Aspect Warrior laden Wave Serpents.

An Imperial Titan should stay ready to Death Ray any Engine of Vaul which is foolish enough to pop up; that will be a death sentence as they do not have void shields and a Death Ray causes an automatic critical.

Night Spinners can be really dangerous in large quantities; a big Thunderhawk bombing group should be able to penetrate the Nightwing screen and nuke the Night Spinners. Alternatively, a Terminator or Assault [units] drop should be very discomforting for the Eldar artillery.

A Bike force is pointless against Jump Packs [equipped] Aspect Warriors, as the Aspect [Warriors] can attack from too far away to make firefights viable. However, an Eldar army based on Wave Serpents can be seriously hurt by a heroic Bike force.

It is my opinion that a balanced Eldar army is very unlikely to win against a standard Space Marine force.