Marine Quickstart Guide

From Colonial Marines Wiki

So you've just joined for the first time as a Marine? No idea what you're doing? Our Space Station 13 Guide is pretty good as an introduction to the interface! Otherwise, let this guide get you up to scratch!

As a foreword, rounds on this server usually last between two to three hours! Make sure you have the time commitment to sit a full round.

The Rules

Read the rules! Colonial Marines is a medium role-play server and you are expected to abide by the rules established by the server staff. If a staff member says do something, do it. If they tell you to stop doing something, stop. It will save both you and the staff a lot of trouble and effort. There is no excuse for not reading the rules. If you have been banned, fairly or unfairly, you may appeal on the ban appeal section of the forums. You have been warned. Thank you and enjoy the game.

Character Setup

This is simple for the most part. You'll create your character on the setup character page.

Do take note of the 'occupation' roles. For now you'll want to set only 'Marine' to "High", everything else to "None", and the bottom option to "Join as Squad Marine if preference unavailable." Other roles (even those that might appear familiar to other servers, such as Cargo Technician) require a robust knowledge of how the Marines operate. For your first round, try and join a round before it starts. It's no big deal to join in the middle, but starting a round will ensure you aren't kicked out of the freezer into a difficult or deadly situation. First, we'll discuss some basics.

Who Orders Who

As a Standard Marine you're at the bottom of the chain of command. You take orders from all ranks above you, but should focus on sticking to your squad, led by your Squad Leader and Staff Officer. You are assigned to one of four squads at round start - Alpha (Red), Bravo (Yellow), Charlie (Muave), or Delta (Blue).

Should your Squad Leader be unavailable to lead, command of the squad will be passed down to the Specialist or anyone named by the outgoing Squad Leader or Staff Officer. You are expected to obey any legal orders given to you by higher ranking marines, especially by your Squad Leader, at all times.

Marine Law

In rare cases, you may be given illegal orders. There is a big difference between orders that violate Marine Law versus orders that violate the RULES. Orders that break Marine Law are considered an In Character (IC) issue and are thus something you may resolve in game so long as the situation is role played, orders that break the server rules are a Out Of Character (OOC) affair. Should you be given orders that would violate the rules then you should contact the staff via A-Help. It's better to be thrown in the brig because you wouldn't murder someone the Squad Leader didn't like than banned for doing so.

Waking Up

At the start of a deployment, you'll wake up in the ship's cryosleep quarters alongside all the other Marines aboard the USS Almayer (Click here for a map of the Almayer). The first thing you'll want to do is examine your identification card (right-click -> examine, or shift-click in hot key mode). This will let you know which squad you're in. The colour-coded arrows on the floor guide the Alphas and Bravos north, and the Charlies and Deltas south.

Arrows-North.png Arrows-South.png

The below image shows us the southern canteen, which is identical to the northern canteen. There are some vending machines at the south-west of the room. Click on the food vendors and vend some food for yourself, then click on the food to hold it in your active hand, and finally eat it by clicking on your character in the middle of the screen. Once you've had your fill, you'll want to head out the door on the left to the prep rooms to get geared.


Marine Equipment

One key to success is ensuring that you are well equipped. Attacking without a weapon may result in catastrophe. These next steps should prepare you for combat.

  1. Since you've just joined, go to an equipment locker in your squad's room and equip all of its contents. If all the lockers have already been emptied out, take one of everything from the two Surplus Vendor.png Surplus Uniform Vendors in the west, and then get a helmet and armour from the Weapons rack.png ColMarTech Automated Weapons rack.
  2. Go further west to the ColMarTech Automated Weapons rack.
  3. M41a.png Get a M41A Pulse Rifle. Load it with anM41Amag.pngM41A magazine by clicking on the rifle with the magazine. Weapons rack offers a good basic attachment,Mountedflash.pngRail Flashlight. Attach it to your rifle just like you reload then click Toggle-Rail-Flashlight.png Toggle Rail Flashlight at the bottom right to turn it on. Place it onto your suit storage.
  4. M276 Pattern Ammo Load Rig.png Fill your ammo rig with M41A magazines M41Amag.png.
  5. M4a3.png Get a M4A3 Service Pistol. Load it with an M4A3 magazine. Attach a Rail Flashlight, turn it on then place the M4A3 pistol in your Satchel.
  6. Flare-pouch.pngGet a Flare Pouch to one of your two pocket slots. It holds five flares, you can refill the pouch with a M94 Flare Pack. When you want to activate a flare, activate it by clicking it (or press Z), then either throw it (R) or drop it (Q).
  7. Aid-pouch.pngGet a First-Aid Pouch to the other pocket slot. The one-use tramadol autoinjector (Tramadol Injector.png) can help against pain. Your five-use gauze (Gauze.png) treats bleeding and brute damage, while your ointment (Ointment.png) treats acid burns. Gauze and ointment need to be targeted onto the specific injured body part, you can do this by selecting the body part at the bottom right.
  8. Knife.png Get a M5 Survival Knife. Sheath it inside your combat boots.
  9. M3 Pattern Personal Armor.png There are two slots in your armour, you can put more magazines in it.
  10. USCM satchel.png Fill your Satchel with M94 Flares Packs M94FlarePack.png.

There are many more options for weaponry and gear in the vendor, but it's best to keep things simple and effective while you're still learning the rest of the game.


Once you've geared up and put on your radio earpiece, you should start hearing radio communications. It's very important in this game to communicate with others. As a squad marine, you'll have two channels on your earpiece. The common channel can be heard by everyone on the Almayer or the planet (depending on where you are), and you can talk on it by typing ; before what you say. Your squad channel can be heard by everyone in your squad, and you can talk into it by typing :q for Alpha, :b for Bravo, :c for Charlie, or :d for Delta. You can also talk into your squad channel with :h, the "default" radio, although different roles have different defaults. Try introducing yourself to your squad over the radio.

If you joined in late in the game, you can choose to skip the "Attachments" and "Briefing Room" sections below and head straight for the hangar.


After gearing up, you may choose to go to the requisitions office (west of cryo, east of briefing) and line up to receive your optional attachments. The Requisitions Officer and Cargo Techs are not obligated or guaranteed to serve you, but they will usually dispense two attachments, two grenades, and small amounts of extra backroom gear to you - a Standard Marine with the rank of Private First Class. Being polite to the requisitions staff makes things easier for everyone, including saying please and thank you.

Some attachments, such as the Underslung Grenade Launcher, can be enabled, fired, or reloaded. The Activate-Weapon-Attachment.png at the bottom right will activate your attachment.

Briefing Room

If you woke up at the start of the round, there will usually be a briefing in the briefing room, opposite requisitions to the west. Find a seat in your squad's colour-coded seating area. The acting Commander will be along soon to describe the situation and his overall game plan, and will issue your squad their initial orders. Remember to behave yourself. Listen to what your Commander has to say, listen to your Squad Leader, and overall watch your fellow Marines' backs. Stay with the team and you'll do fine.

The Dropships to the Surface

Once briefing ends, head west of the briefing room to the hangar with the rest of your squad. There are two dropships to the surface, Dropship One ("Alamo"), deploying to Landing Zone 1 (LZ1), and Dropship Two ("Normandy") deploying to Landing Zone 2 (LZ2). Take the dropship your squad is assigned to, or whichever one drops you closest to your squad if you joined late. Ask your squad on the radio what to do if you're unsure. The ride isn't smooth, so you'll want to sit down and buckle in by standing on top of a chair and dragging your Marine's sprite to the chair. To unbuckle yourself, click the chair with an empty hand.


It's highly recommended you read the bullet path guide so that you understand how the bullet mechanics work on this server. In regards of friendly fire, apologise to them and call a medic over or if the person you shot is heavily injured, drag them to one. Once you enter combat you'll want to go into harm intent if you weren't already, this just ensures that you don't accidentally switch places with a marine when they're retreating and firing saving you from being shot by them, it also means you'll point blank any enemies on a tile next to you if you click on them.

Do NOT throw / fire grenades diagonally if there is a marine / wall next to you at the path, while bullets can fly diagonally pass a wall, grenades can't and will bounce back to you.


Light and vision are vital to your success. There are three main ways to see further into the dark.

  • Turn on your shoulder lamp by clicking the armour icon at top left corner. This provides a consistent but short range of light.
  • Turn on a rifle's rail flashlight by clicking the activate rail flashlight button at the bottom right Toggle-Rail-Flashlight.png. This provides more light than your shoulder lamp (it works even having the rifle equipped at waist).
  • Toss flares around to illuminate the area around you. If you are pushing and run out of flares, you can pick up flares which are already on the ground and throw them.

Good positioning and clear lanes of fire can be what your squad needs to thrive, while bad positioning and copious friendly fire can be what shatters it. Generally, to avoid hitting other marines and maximize firepower, try to move in a dispersed group, at least 2 tiles away from each other. Moving erratically or stepping into others' firing lanes will often cause you to be hit by friendly fire, so try to be predictable and keep your distance. It's hard for shooters to concentrate on both aiming at hostiles and avoiding friendlies crossing the firing line. Aim for centre mass, so a friendly fire will not be too deadly. Stay away from corners that you can't see around - something might lurk behind.

Rifle Handling

The pulse rifle takes two hands to shoot. If it's in one hand, you're just carrying it around. To ready it for firing, click on the rifle in your active hand (or Z in hotkey mode). You'll know you've wielded your rifle when your other hand shows that it's occupied, your character's graphic readies the rifle, and you move a bit slower. To shoot the rifle, just point the cursor at a spot and click. Be very careful not to shoot fellow Marines. Avoid shooting yourself (don't worry, everyone's done it). To lower the rifle again, click it in your active hand.

You will eventually need to reload your rifle once it runs out of ammo. If you hear a long beeping sound, your rifle's automatically ejected its magazine, otherwise you'll want to eject it either by clicking the eject magazine buttom in the bottom right Eject-Magazine.png, or by clicking the rifle with your other hand. Once that's done, either click the weapon with a magazine in your hand or click-drag a magazine onto your weapon to reload it.

Team Work

Foolishly stumbling out into the darkness alone is one of the easiest ways to get dragged off and killed, or worse. An effective and protected marine is one who sticks with as many fellow marines as possible. For your first game, you may want to play a little safer and stay alive longer to get used to the experience, so try to hang around the back or find a well-lit, well-populated area to guard. There's no shame in being terrified of your enemies.


  • Check out the FAQ for more information.
  • Don't panic.
  • Follow orders.
  • Stay with the Squad Leader unless otherwise ordered.
  • Never go anywhere alone.
  • Communicate as much as possible with your squad. It would be hard to talk too much.
  • Report all enemy contact.
  • Damage is realistic and getting wounded sucks. Don't rambo around or charge in.
  • Be safe, fall back, stay alive.
  • Stay one tile behind barricades.

Additional Reading

The following are some links that go further into explaining details and some other Marine roles:

If you have any more questions, just A-help and one of the server's mentors will be happy to help you.