40K Rules Conundrum: The Astartes Rule NOBODY Can Agree On!

Codex Space Marines 2015

It seems like Space Marine and non-Marine players alike mix up this one little detail when it comes to the Chapter Tactics special rule.

The new Space Marine book came out about two months ago, but it seems like only lately have we really been able to sit down and digest the last eight months of codex releases.

When it comes to the chapter tactics rule for Space Marines, there seems to be a little detail that everyone forgets, and/or confuses.

Take a look at this restriction at the bottom of the that section.

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Basically this wording explains how the rules in this codex can refer to a chapter’s specific tactics rule, and how it confers to a unit.

For instance saying ‘White Scar models’ seems to be the short way of saying that those units benefit from their chapter tactics rule (unless there are other restrictions like being on a bike etc…)


This is where a ton of confusion seems to set in.  I’ve noticed two VERY distinct camps of option on the matter.

Camp A)

Is of the option that only codex Space Marine chapters get the Chapter Tactics special rules, and thusly it’s safe to mix the stand alone codex books like Blood Angels, Space Wovles etc.. with these units as they still retain their Chapter Tactics. This is what some say it is the intent of the last sentence above before the italicized example text.


Camp B)

Others seem to venomously insist that these stand alone books are in fact “Space Marines”, and any mixing of “Space Marines” invalidates the Chapter tactics special rules from other Codex Space Marine units.

The most clear cut example of this line of thinking would be to say a White Scars unit loses hit and run because there was a Space Wolves battle leader attached to their unit.


It seems a lot of folks are split down the middle on this point currently, and as Space Marine become more and more popular, I can see this becoming a major issue for event organizers the world over.

I think in the end we can all agree that the wording of this rule wasn’t quite up to par with the rest of the book perhaps, and that again it could very much benefit from a FAQ.

What say ye? Are you for team Camp A, or Camp B?

  • Nathaniel Wright

    ‘the unit counts from neither chapter, thus has neither chapter tactic rule.’

    Black and white.

    • Robert Russell

      Yeah cant see where the confusion is coming from exchange ‘ultramarine unit’ for ‘a unit with ultramarine chapter tactics’ and it all makes sense dunno what the A camp is all a bout and why the two camps are mutually exclusive.

      • GammaGoblin

        “The book often refers to a model, character or unit by its Chapter. IN ALL CASES, this refers to a model, character or unit with the Chapter Tactics special rule.”

        Unless they FAQ Wolves, Angels, ect and give them the special rule, they are not Chapters as defined by C:SM. They are treated as different factions.

        • Luca Battisti

          That is actually correct (syntactically if nothing else). Good call.

        • Chris Riley

          I agree with this. Unless they give space wolves, blood Angels and dark angels the ‘chapter tactics’ special rule they are treated as different factions

          • Tesq

            it make sense due them do not use the codex astartes wrote by guilliman

        • chip6793

          I apologize, but maybe I’m not quite seeing what you’re trying to imply.

          From what I’m reading of the rule, and in all honesty, this is the first that I have seen it, it doesn’t say that you can’t play those other codex’s with a “detachment” or “formation” from those other “chapters” (we all know they are chapters, it doesn’t have to be stated over and over again), it’s simply saying that if you do mix one of those units into a c:SM detachment or formation, then you don’t get to use the chapter Tactics. That actually makes sense to me.

          It’s not saying that you can’t have a detachment of Ultra Marines and another detachment of Blood Angels, at which point they would both get their respective abilities.

          • GammaGoblin

            No need to apologize! 🙂

            The argument is more based around attaching an IC with chapter tactics to a unit that does not have the rule or vice versa, not about detachments. The question then becomes this: Does that IC lose his chapter tactics if the unit he is joining doesn’t have the chapter tactics rule at all?

            I’ll use a White Scars character joining a unit of Thunderwolves as that is a popular list idea taking advantage of this.

            Since Space Wolves don’t have chapter tactics, the rule I quoted from C:SM states that they are not technically a Chapter at all. Due to that, a Scars character can join the unit while keeping the benefits of his chapter tactics. This does not mean that the SW models in the unit get those chapter tactics. They can, however, still take advantage of the WS character’s hit and run chapter tactic since they don’t have a tactic of their own to nullify the Scars’ one (and H+R only requires one model in the unit to have the rule).

            The rule itself is simply staying that a unit including models with two different chapter tactics cancel each other out.

          • chip6793

            Ok, thank you for the clarification Gamma.

            Now,that I’ve had the opportunity to look it over, it’s very much clearer.

            The Blood Angels and Space Wolves books are two completely separate chapters, that have their chapter tactics embedded within the unit organizations. The BA have furious charge and the Space Wolves have acute senses and counter attack. Because they are their own book. They can label it for each of their units and there won’t be any issues with it.

            The reason they use chapter tactics and then describing what each of them is separately for the units represented within the space marine codex is because it would take up A LOT of space to say, “ultra marines have … White scars have… Etc.” labeling it “chapter tactics means that they can list “chapter tactics” and it’s up to you which army you’re actually using.

            So, that being said, definitely can’t use white scars with space wolves in the same “detachment” or “formation”, at least that’s my read to it.

          • Cody Raugh Ferguson

            Well with rules lawyering you could argue the case, I think though it primarily is meant in spirit to prevent mixing imperial fists and Ultramarine chapter tactic from the main codex, or like with the new Dark Angles codex prevent the mixing of a IF unit with DA troops to grant a squad BOTH rerolling of 1 with bolt weapons and BS 2+ on overwatch.

            So following the spirit of the rule I’d apply the penalty to Space Wolves and Blood Angeles

          • Muninwing

            …except that the rule predates the DA codex, and they did not change the wording to make DA have “chapter tactics” so that it would apply to them.

            remember… the whole squad would not get the rule. just the characters that have the appropriate rules. an IF character joining the DA will not grant his CT to the greenies. but the greenies wouldn’t lose their BS2 nor would the IF character lose his lone ability to use the reroll.

            the argument is whether they would lose their own abilities, not whether they would be able to mix and match. that’s an outright no.

          • chip6793

            To me, that’s just sima tics and someone trying to cheat the system.

            If you have a Dark Angels Detachment, or an Ultramarines Detachment, then you need to have a Captain or master from one of those units commanding them.

            That to me, is how the rule reads, and in my personal opinion, doesn’t leave a lot to interpretation… Unless of course you want it to read that way.

            Now, if you’re talking about a second detachment, master or Captain granting special abilities to a different detachment, that’s a different detachments “squad”, that’s a different story and I don’t believe the question was about that… I could have misinterpreted that though.

          • Muninwing

            meh… until someone finds how to actually use it to break something, it’s really not a big deal.

            what is it going to do… give you two extra scout squads for scoring and two DA characters to make two of your primary squads stubborn? with ATSKNF, that’s not that big a deal…

          • Shawn

            For a country in which English originated, GW sure does have a difficult time writing clear rules at times.

          • Muninwing

            to be fair, that assumes this wasn’t deliberate.

            and writing rules is actually hard sometimes. it’s akin to writing legalese.

            no, their problem is balancing, and not writing stupid fluff or over-the-top rules, not the writing of everything else.

          • Cj

            Well it’s clear they spend no time whatsoever play testing their rules.

          • Harukae

            Except that Chapter Tactics is a rule that’s exclusive to C:SM and that rule is to keep crazy shenanigans like with the 6th Ed. version of C:SM at bay.

          • Harukae

            Still missing the point, because Space Wolves, Blood Angels, Dark Angels, and Grey Knights don’t have the Chapter Tactics special rule then it wouldn’t interfere with any unit with that rule if an IC from the standalone SM codices would join and vice versa.

            What C:SM is referencing is if something with the Chapter Tactics rule would join another unit or be joined by another unit. The Chapter Tactics rule is exclusive to C:SM, and isn’t present in any of the standalone Marine codices, so it wouldn’t interfere with any other army and no other army would interfere with it so this is an irrelevant issue really.

          • Shawn

            The first part of your explanation was a bit confusing but your second paragraph made sense, and that is what I concluded when reading the rule. I would think however, that mixing chapters in this way, that neither unit benefit from anything other than their own chapter tactics/abilities. No hit in run granted to thudnerwolves or space wolf bikers if you add khan to the unit for example. Khan would still have it, but he space wolves don’t grant any of their abilities to Khan. I hope that made snese.

          • GammaGoblin

            The space wolves models definitely don’t get hit and run themselves.

            Only one model in a unit needs hit and run for the unit to be able to use that rule. Since the white scars character had that, the unit would be able to hit and run despite the majority of models not having the rule.

          • Shawn

            Okay, is hit and run granted by Khan, or White Scar chapter tactics? That would make a difference.

          • GammaGoblin

            It comes from chapter tactics, but what difference does it make? If playing by RAW, the Scars characters don’t lose their chapter tactics when joining a space wolf unit.

          • Shawn

            Agreed, RAW. I was just curious, since I haven’t read Scars’ Chapter Tactics. I do wish GW would learn to take other stuff into consideration when they right codices, but I think they sequester an individual designer and tell him to do his best writing a codex without any rule books handy, or something equally stupid

        • Shawn

          Well space wolves and blood angles don’t have an ability called chapter tactics, and the rule specifically says units with the chapter tactics rule, therefore, wouldn’t blood angels, space wolves, and dark angels be exempt? I haven’t seen the new DA codex, so I don’t know if they got a chapter tactics: Inner Circle or some such.

          • GammaGoblin

            That’s exactly what I’m saying.

    • Shawn

      Agreed. The simplest thing would be to avoid putting characters from multiple chapters in the same unit altogether to avoid losing both chapter tactics. I think, and this is just a guess, was done to mitigate deathstars like the draigo star, where Tiggy and Dragio are along with a unit of grav dev centurions. Neither Tiggy or Draigo would benefit from Ultramarines or GreyKnight specific abilities, although they would retain their own unique abilities I guess.

  • Talos2

    This is the sort of argument that validates the release of AoS.

    • Da Masta Cheef

      AoS is what? A month old? Lets see where it stands in a year before we determine that its been ‘validated’.

    • Muninwing

      sadly, Baer does a bad job illustrating why this is an arguable issue.

      let me try…

      1. rule is if another chapter is in your unit, it invalidates both sets of Chapter Tactics

      Ex: if your Ultramarine Librarian joins up with a Tac unit of Salamanders, neither the tac nor libby can benefit from either sallie nor ultra Chapter Tactics rules.

      2. chapters are defined as different units having different Chapter Tactics

      thus, IH, WS, UM, Sallie, IF, CF, BT, and any army pretending to be one of them via successor chapters… as well as anyone using the FW chapter tactics… are each and all (1) of the same faction, (2) all C:SM units, (3) bound by the use of Chapter Tactics rules, and (4) therefore subject to #1 above

      3. Dark Angels (looking at the book now… and i’d assume SW and BA as well) do not have the rule Chapter Tactics. that’s a codex astartes adaptation, adn those three do not follow the codex (the BT don;t either, but screw them). for the DA, it’s not written as “Chapter tactics: grim resolve” — it’s just Grim Resolve. it might function like chapter tactics in all ways within the army singularly, be of the same point value, integrate into the uniqueness the same way, but it is not the same thing.

      it is most definitely and in no way labeled with that “chapter tactics” designation.

      4. therefore…

      my UM libby could join with my DA detachment (as per cross-detachment rules) and neither my DA would lose their Grim Resolve (because it is not a Chapter Tactics rule) nor would the libby lose the smurftactics (since the DA do not the the Chapter Tactics rule to turn off the libby’s powers).

      it might not sound right… but it is.

      and it’s not even a bending of the rules. it’s like saying that Land Speeders have no roof, therefore should be Open Topped — it seems to make sense visually and via parallels (“other small light vehicles without roofs are open-topped, so why not them?”) but it’s just not in any way implied by the rules.

      normally, i see Baer’s articles as cringe at the newest rules-lawyering nonsense i expect to hear about. this time, though, there is no lawyering present. it’s just looking for what the rules state.

      and given that it debuted after the SW and BA, and before the DA, it’s not like this was a change on terminology. it’s consistent in all four books whether the specific terms are used or not.

      • GammaGoblin

        Very well stated. This is exactly how the rule should be interpreted as it is written.

        I think that pointing out that the DA codex came out after the C:SM one shows that this was intended. It’s still not the best rule and it is pretty cheesy, but that’s how it is.

        • Muninwing

          can we find an example of the possibility of exploiting this? then it’s cheezy.

          for now, it’s an odd blip.

  • Are the Space Wolves “another chapter” than White Scars? Yes, of course.
    They are Space Wolves, not White Scars.
    How is that not clear?

    • LordKrungharr

      No they are not another Chapter with respect to the rules, only with respect to fluff. Wolves and BA and DA are not referred to as Chapters in their rules are they? They don’t have Chapter Tactics do they?

      • Chris Johnson

        Except they do. Wolves have things like counter attack / acute sensors across nearly all their units. Blood Angels have things like furious charge across theirs. These blanket type army wide special rules are in essence their ‘chapter tactics’.

        • Nathaniel Wright

          Counter-Attack is per model, not per unit. Acute Senses would probably fly.

          Grim Resolve is per Model.

          Most of the super ‘kewl’ rules are per model, not conferred to the unit.

        • IndigoJack

          Where are those rules referred to as chapter tactics?

          • sethmo

            You are a tool.

          • IndigoJack

            Excellent rebuttal, sir. Were you captain of the debate team in high school?

          • Benjamin E

            No, he’s right. You’re clearly being a tool in this instance. Have fun being one of the jack@sses that’s ruining the hobby.

          • Muninwing

            show where it says that they are Chapter Tactics

            what’s more, it was existent before the C:SM was released, then kept consistent when the DA were released. thus, that rule was known about by the creators for months, and but was neither changed nor was it adapted.

            DA do not have “Chapter Tactics: Grim Resolve” — they do not follow the Codex Astartes in a meaningful way. they have been treated as a totally different army for allies matrix purposes, for psychic power purposes, and have fundamentally different units. so how will they suddenly become the same thing when they’ve been different for many editions?

            they didn’t even get access to the better storm shields that the SM suddenly found back in 5th, thanks to terrible FAQ writing. but suddenly someone’s breaking the game if they point out that the two armies are different?

            sorry. no dice.

          • chip6793

            Hi Munin…

            You are correct, there isn’t ANYTHING stating that what the Dark Angels, Blood Angels, nor the Space Wolves have “chapter tactics”, even though they clearly do. And yes, someone wanting to purposely misinterpret the rule, can absolutely do that.

            That being said, if I were to hazard a guess, and of course, this is only a guess, I’d have to GW purposely used the term “chapter tactics” to try and minimize the amount of text required in the new codex. Can you imagine if they had to write out EACH AND EVERY actual chapter tactic for EACH AND EVERY unit? How big would the codex have been then? Using the term CHAPTER TACTICS, and then having a simple entry for each units specific chapter tactic separately, and then having the term available for one set of entries makes a lot of sense that, right?

            Since the other 3 chapters mentioned (DA, BA and SW), all have their own book, and any special rules can be implied to automatically belong to them, such as the grim resolve for the DA, furious charge for the BA and acute senses and counter attack for the SW.

            Now I’m going to assume that you’re actually aware of this fact and are actually just stirring the pot or just trying to get a rise out of everyone… Well done.

            If you’re referring to the fact that GW didn’t write CHAPTER TACTICS for the other three units… Really? Did they honestly to? As was mentioned previously, isn’t it obvious that them being a completely separate chapter to the others clue enough? You can’t honestly say no…

          • Muninwing

            not stirring the pot, not at all.

            you are making an assumption based on fluff, not on rules.

            ” the Dark Angels, Blood Angels, nor the Space Wolves have ‘chapter tactics’, even though they clearly do.”

            no, that’s the thing. they don’t.

            do the Eldar have Chapter Tactics because they get the run-shoot-run ability?

            is “Veterans of the Long War” also Chapter Tactics, since it behaves in the exact same way?

            Chapter Tactics has been around for a few years now. they could have added it into the new codexes to solidify what they were doing, but they did not. assuming that other people are “wanting to purposely misinterpret the rule” implies that they know it is wrong (because you are right) and are seeking advantage by trying to spin it incorrectly.

            that’s highly disrespectful to your fellow gamers. plus, you cannot back it up — there is no specific language that in any way implies that your interpretation is even remotely correct, never mind intended, never mind even implied.

            how about you replace “Chapter Tactics” with “Deep Strike” or “scout” and try to make the same argument — that a model that has “infiltrate: has something like the other two, so it is somehow affected by a negative that only affects deep strike.

            if it was “models with ATSKNF,” it’d be applicable to all chapters of Space Marines. but since only codex chapters have Chapter Tactics — a consistency that implies deliberateness — then this conundrum only exists between chapters taken from the same book, right up until they edit the books to delineate that the chapters get those abilities from “chapter tactics” instead of somehow else.

            they honestly HAD TO write the name of the specific rule in question for that rule to have an effect. otherwise, it doesn’t apply. not unlike GK weapons affecting models with the “daemon” special rule — if an enemy seems like they should have it, but does not, you understand that it doesn’t just apply because you feel it should, right?

          • Shawn

            There is a hole in that theory, because GW could have saved space and said “Space Wolves Chapter Tactics: Acute Senses and Counter Attack” in one sentence and “Blood Angels Chapter Tactics: Furiouse Charge, Rampage and Vehicles Gain Fast.” Wow, imagine all the room they could have saved with just those two sentences.

            GW loves to be wordy. It extends the length of the rule book, thus extending the cost of the book. All their 40k rule books, especially the BRB could be edited for clarity and cost a lot less.

          • IndigoJack

            I am having fun. Your tears are salty 🙂

          • KLVT

            What’s ruining the hobby is GW’s horribly written rules.

        • GammaGoblin

          Until a FAQ says that those are the Chapter Tactics and not just special rules on the units, they are treated as a faction and not a Chapter as defined by C:SM.

        • Muninwing

          “in essence” is not “actually”

          they have their own flavor. but “chapter tactics” is a specific things. and that specific thing is what we are discussing.

          if they have no specific thing, then they behave like all the other armies that also do not have that rule.

    • Mr_Pickles

      it’s an issue of “Fluff =/= Rules”. In the Fluff, Space Wolves are a Chapter of Space Marines. According to the rules, Space Wolves are not a Chapter as defined by the Chapter Tactics special rule. The issue of conflict between two “Chapter Tactics ()” using models isn’t in play when having an Independent Character White Scar Unit attached to a Space Wolf unit. As only one version of the “Chapter Tactics ()” is in play. The same goes for An Ultramarine IC joining a Blood Angels Squad, or a Imperial Fist’s IC joining a Dark Angels’ Squad.

      The rule states, that if two versions of “Chapter Tactics ()” are in play, within the same unit, then both are null and void. therefore, if only one instance of “Chapter Tactics()” is in play, then the model using the “Chapter Tactics()” rule keeps it.

  • Noveltyboy

    Typical WAAC nitpicking. It’s pretty clear a Space Wolf joins a Imperial Fist people will notice he’s not wearing yellow so will not get bolter drill or whatever they get. But because he’s calling the shots they lose that ability, my way or the highway style.

    • GammaGoblin

      It’s not an argument about whether the SW will get the chapter tactics. It’s clear they do not.

      It more about whether the IF character would retain the chapter tactics if joining a SW unit.

      • Damistar

        Seems clear they would not, as it says neither gets them because it is now a mixed unit.

        • GammaGoblin

          Only of there were models of two Chapters in the same unit. C:SM defines a Chapter as referring to a model, character, or unit with the chapter tactics special rule “in all cases”, which SW do not have.

          • Damistar

            Having re-read it a couple times, you are correct. The invalidation only occurs when you have a mixed unit where BOTH have the Chapter Tactics special rule. However the SW in the example above would not benefit from the IF chapter tactics obviously.

          • GammaGoblin

            Correct. It seems that’s where a lot of the confusion is coming from. No way do the non codex chapters get the tactics this way unless the benefit only requires one model in the unit to have a rule for it to apply to the other models (ex: white scars’ hit and run in a thunderwolf deathstar)

  • false-emperor

    “could benefit from a FaQ?” What is a FaQ?

    SM book includes SM chapters, X,Y,Z. (this used to be called the Vanilla Book, is it still?)
    Other Books include “TITLE of chapter here” SM chapter.

    RaW verses RaI

    • Orodruin


  • Lee D Boosey

    It’s pretty obvious that adding a marine from any other chapter be they Dark Angels, Blood Angels, Space Wolves or any successor thereof invalidates the chapter tactics of any Codex chapter’s units chapter tactics.

    • false-emperor

      well said;
      I think the “founding” chapters should be different, even if the rules are vague, and even if they share a codex.

      I think successor chapters from the same founding chapter can share chapter tactics.

      • Black Templars are Imperial Fist successors but not the same rule.

        But it’s obvious that marines from two chapter with the same chapter rule can share it (e.g. Raven Guard and Raptors)

        • Eric Buchanan

          If you run your Raptors as RG Chapter Tactics yes, but Forgeworld also has seperate chapter tactics for Raptors (Precision strikes for assisinations or something of the like) in which case you couldn’t mix and match.

          • 😀 worst example possible. Well catched.

  • It seems like this is pretty obvious and everyone is agreeing on it. It’s almost like the title of this article was designed to get people to visit BOLS during a slow news day. There’s a word for that but I heard we get blocked for using it here.

    • Atreides127

      you might say we are being baited into the clicking the link?

      • GaryT

        ha ha, you could also add that they are master baiting 😀

        • Most of Rob’s articles remind me of someone sitting alone master baiting.

  • Erik Setzer

    Hmm… So if they cancel out each other’s chapter tactics, does that mean Blood Angels and Space Wolves lose all special rules? Do you swap out their stats for a generic Marine then?

    • Robert Russell

      it says it effects their chapter tactics so special rules in the unit description will be unaffected, but any special rules they gain through their chapter tactics will be. it pretty clear tbh.

      • Jason C

        Space Wolves and Blood Angels don’t have Chapter Tactics. That was uh, the whole point of the article. Above. That you’re commenting in.

        • Robert Russell

          well its pretty simple they are not effected by this (as i said in above comment you obviously didn’t read properly) i don’t get what needs to be discuss cause its plain to see written in black and white. for god sake have you had a serious knock to the head.

    • It seems to just be a penalty for chapters from codex Space Marines.

  • Jaidyn

    here we go again rob .. almost as if he wants it SO badly for even some of us to agree that its camp A so he can pull his crazy shenanigans. It is clearly Camp B … Blood angels,dark angels, space wolves … etc does not matter its a totally diffrent chapter

    • GammaGoblin

      It’s not clear. Those books came out before C:SM. They don’t have the special rule, therefore are not Chapters as defined by the new book.

      Until a FAQ clears things up (unlikely), they are different factions entirely if going by RAW.

    • BeastOfShadow

      Except as the rules are written it is Camp A. It’s a stupid bloody rule but Chapter refers to models with the Chapter Tactics rule and as only the vanilla marines + supplements have the Chapter Tactics rule they’re the only ones that can cause the conflict. Stupid rule is stupid.

    • Conrad_Dakarn

      Rules as written…it’s Camp A.
      Space Wolves, Blood Angels, Dark Angels and Grey Knights do NOT have the Chapter Tactics special rule and are not given a Chapter definition in any part of their rules.
      They are given a definition of Faction but not Chapter.
      RAW it’s Camp A….there’s no arguing that.

      RAI, however, it could be argued either way….but the biggest can of worms with this is as to whether BA/DA/SW units suddenly lose special rules (counter attack for example) because they “count as” their Chapter Tactic special rule??

      Sorry…but due to the horrible can of worms that trying to say “RAI is Camp B”…I would have to say stick with Camp A in all instances until there is a clear definition of “Chapter” for BA/DA/SW and even Grey Knights….and a further definition of what “rules” they gain for their “Chaper Tactics”.

      • They could have put a one-line fix in C:SM saying “BA/SM/DA/GK count as ‘Chapters’ in regards to the Chapter Tactics rules” but they didn’t. That simple of a line would clear everything up. So, if someday that gets added via an FAQ then we’d know where we stand, but until then you’re 100% correct that Camp A is correct per RAW.

        As for the suggestion of adding anything saying SW would lose Counter-Attack, BA would lose Furious Charge, etc, etc, I think that would not only be cumbersome but it would be one of few if not the only time one codex’s FAQ directly errata’d another codex. I think the first option above would be the better choice *if* they feel it needs fixing.

        • Conrad_Dakarn

          It would be cumbersome but it would also be fair in terms of making the rule work for all Chapters and not just “punishing” C:SM.

          If they were to say “BA/SW/DA/GK count as ‘Chapters’ in regard to the Chapter Tactics rules”, then that would mean C:SM units lose their special rules when BA/SW/DA/GK IC’s join them while those non C:SM units keep all their special rules.

          It would be cumbersome and would be a case that all of the codexes would need a clearly defined set of Errata across the board but it’s the only way to make the intent of the rule fair.

  • Aezeal

    The example in the pic seems to make it pretty clear it’s B. I have to say that after reading A a few times I’m not entirely sure what is meant there at all.

  • Captain Raptor

    I play a bunch of different Space Marine Chapters, I’d love it if “A” was correct, but it’s not even close. “B” is the very clear answer and seeing as even the comment thread agrees (and we never agree on anything) I think we’re pretty safe.

  • Chris D’Andrea

    8 comments in and everyone is in agreement that it is B

    • LordKrungharr

      I’m firmly in camp A. If they FAQ it otherwise then fine but here is no rules defining the Wolves BA or DA as Chapters nor do they have any Chapter Tactics rules In those codices.

      • Nathaniel Wright

        So if a Vanilla Marine joins a squad of Dark Angels, they’d keep their Chapter Tactics?

        Apply the razor the other way and it’s just as ridiculous sounding.

        • Charon

          For the same reason that you are not allowed to use Codex: Space Marine formations with codex: Blood angels Models.
          For the same reason a Daemon Herold from Khorne Daemonkin is different to a Daemon Herold from Codex: Daemons.

          Blood Angels and Space Wolves do not have Chapter tactics and are not a Chapter in the rule sense of codex: Space Marines.

          • Nathaniel Wright

            Formations are a different beast, as it outright states that Formations can also be created (with permission) on the fly. It’s the Forgeworld debate/Gentleman’s Game/Not being a dick thing that 40k players are very quick to insist that, if you have any social skills and can accept rejection, you are Satan.

          • barroomhero

            No Nathaniel. It is just about clear rules here. Of course we all know that the SW, BA and DA are Chapters of the Space Marines. BUT they have their own Codex and therefore are an army of their own. They even don’t have any Chapter Tactics, but armywide special rules. The Chapter Tactics special rule only applies to Marines using the SM-Codex. And there’s a fluff reason for that, too, since we all know how different DA, SW and BA are from the Codex Astartes 😉

          • GaryT

            Exactly. Just treat them as a separate army faction that are battle brothers, same way you would treat guard/SoB/Grey Knight allies.

          • Muninwing

            terminators have really thick legs. not allowing them special jumping rules is being a dick because i assume something about them that is in no way supported by their rules.

            no different from your statement.

            prove it with clear rules or don’t make the assumption.

          • Charon

            So basically you shift around how you like and everyone insisting on sticking to one wording is lacking social skills?

            While I do agree that communication is key, I dont want to spend hours discussing every possible keyword interpretation on a cas to case basis. “Yes in this case it is a Space Marine, no in this case it it no Space Marine but a Blood Angel. Why? Because this is how I want to see it”

          • Nathaniel Wright

            Which is why I say formations and codex rules are different beasts. The Formations are blueprints, they want us to create our own formations. They want us to interact with the people we’re playing against in something beyond the MTG ‘your move, my move’ format. The non-Vanilla SM codex special rules are full of ‘if unit contains ‘codex’ and ‘This model only’ rules. What are you getting out of having a Dark Angel guy in your group? Zealot? Cool. You aren’t getting their BS 2 overwatch. I mean, I suppose I can see the reasoning behind the other side, given that so many of those rules are single-target or require Codex members, but why would a space wolf in a squad of Imperial Fists get to fire their weapon as though they were imperial fists?

          • Charon

            He would not. He has no such chapter tactics. But the Fists would not lose their chapter tactics for the same reason (as written in the rules).
            White Scars is different here as their chapter tactics confer Hit and Run which confers to the whole unit.

          • Damistar

            What does the BRB say about independent characters joining units and special rules?

          • Charon

            They do not confer unless otherwise stated. That is why the Space Wolf would not get Bolter Drill from the imperial fists but Hit and Run from the White scars (Hit and Run: “If a unit contains at least one model with this special rule…”)
            However the BRB also does not state that special rules are lost if an IC joins (unless all models in said unit must have the special rule to use it – fleet for example)

          • Muninwing

            Stubborn, from Grim Resolve, is one where it explicitly states “if at least one model in the unit has this rule…”

          • Muninwing

            explain, clearly, what rule would get rid of their BS2 overwatch please.

            the whole unit does not get it. just the models that had it before. my DA librarian won’t give your salamanders BS2 overwatch. but since he is stubborn via Grim Resolve, the unit would benefit from the effects of that. but if he joined an IH unit, it’s not like he would gain IWND, but the other marines would not lose it either.

            because the DA don’t have Chapter Tactics. they have Grim Resolve. and there is no place anywhere that makes the claim that the two are equal. plus, the DA book came out after this rule was written, so the specific language was already in existence.

            the rule in question is that if A joins B, then neither can A use B’s rules or B A’s… but that now A cannot use A’s rules, and B cannot use B’s.

          • Muninwing

            how is “it says that this rule is an issue, but these units don’t have that rule” in any way being a dick?

        • Muninwing

          counter-argument: my DA lose their abilities, because someone in different armor colors jumped into their unit?

          even though those two things are not actually Chapter Tactics?

          how is this supportable? they have nothing to do with my army. they’re in a different book. and there are differences in groups from different books all the time that GW neither corrects nor normalizes.

  • Space Wolves don’t have any chapter tactics … Only applies to the new sm codex.

    • euansmith

      There are no chapter tactics on Fenris…

      • ChubToad

        On Baal they were lost in the Rad wastes.

        • Muninwing

          the DA lost theirs when NOTHING HAPPENED on Caliban…

          • Zingbaby

            Hah ok that was funny dude.

  • Victor Ques

    No chapter tactics.

  • This… again?! It’s clearly B. I cannot pathom how this is confusing!

    • Muninwing

      show where the non-C:SM armies have Chapter Tactics. because if they don’t have conflicting Chapter Tactics, then nothing is lost.

      btw… if they have special abilities that are not “Chapter Tactics” it does not count.

  • barroomhero

    No, sorry, very clear Option A. Different Codex, different army. PERIOD. All rules referring to Chapter Tactics OF COURSE only apply to Space Marines chapters included in the SM-Codex! Dark Angels, Space Wolves and Blood Angels simply don’t have anything called Chapter Tactics. It may not be common sense, but it is as simple as that.

    • GaryT

      I have to disagree there. Take the Scout rule for example. If a character joins a unit that has infiltrate/outflank, then that unit cannot infiltrate/outflank if the attached character does not have that rule. The same thinking would be applied to the mixing of different chapters or friendly armies if you look at BA, SW and DA as separate entities.

      • ChubToad

        I will disagree with you there. The Chapter Tactics special rule does not have that restriction regarding other rules different from Chapter tactics itself. So in that regard, a unit with the CT special rule will be able to join another unit with different special rules, and not invalidate CT itself. Thus if you join an Ultramiarines unit with Necrons, their special rules will not cancel each other. Same occurs with the other Astartes Codex, their special rules don’t invalidate CT either.

      • barroomhero

        The Scout rule is a totally different example. I said it a lot of times, and i say it again: READ THE RULES – ALL OF THEM!!!
        In this case, just read the Special rules and part of Independent Characters referring to them!

    • Sutr

      When you look at this line of thought thats the time when JJs starts to make sense on that other article. And before anyone starts talking about rules loopholes GW is known and how other games are só much tighter and whatnot ask yourselfs what other game you might use for comparison has the flexibility, size and complexity of 40k. Its easy to police and control a game with very limited options but when you starts adding options it tends to create these loopholes. One has to starts using commonsense when dealing with sandbox rules but some people do seam to havê a sérious lack of that. You havê to do 1 of 3 things in that case. Simply grow commonsense, be THAT GUY, or move on to smaller games and livre happily ever after.

      • barroomhero

        No, THIS is actually one of the main reasons 40K is so much fun! The rules are very complex, and many people like it this way.
        If you think otherwise, that is very fine and i totally respect that. You play after your houserules then or just a whole different game. I really understand this part of the community who just wants to have a simple and storytelling game without an academic discussion about rules, i really do!
        But you also have to respect the other guys like me, who have fun in competitive games, exploiting all rules and options as much as possible! Yeah,we really like this aspect of the game – repect that! And since we really go deep into the rules and therefore KNOW what is possible and what is not, please don’t discuss about rules with us if you don’t really care about those and very often haven’t even read them more than once!
        You play the game the way you prefer, and we play competitive, and we do not have to Play against each other. 😉 Still, we love the same Hobby 🙂

  • Frequent Respawn

    Its A. And I wonder what people would say if SW, BA, DA etc. use Space Marines Formations and statlines despite the fact that they are different to their codex. And afaik Grim Resolve for DA is not stated as “Chapter Tactic”, not even every unit has it. So it would only count for allied units from the Space Marine Codex.

  • Nikolaas Fishel

    Key words here are chapter tactics. Wolves and neither set of angels have the chapter tactics special rule, so mixing them with any unit that does have it means they get to keep it.
    I don’t understand why people are ignoring that part.

  • euansmith

    Brother Optimus Prime, “Okay, boys, here come those filthy Alpha Legion Decepticons! Together we can defeat them! Follow me! COUNTER CHARGE!!!”

    Brother Bumplebot, “Counter charge?! We only know Bolter Drill…”

    Brother Optimus Prime, “Why are you hanging back and leaving me to fight them alone?! Aaaaagh! You tossers… avenge… me…”

    • GaryT

      Now that is what I call ‘Forge the Narrative!’ 😀

  • Albino_42

    i’ve decided to start writing exclusively in lower case, in protest of larry and rob’s horrific crimes against the shift key.

    • euansmith

      i thought ee cummings did that because he was a bit pretentious… maybe he just didn’t like the bols editorial style either 😉

      • Albino_42

        yeah i believe most of his poetry was written in lamentation of bols’ new buzzfeed-inspired direction. I did some rummaging and found this, entitled ‘The BoLS’:

        the bols
        is dying the
        lips of a big red murder
        with capitals

        • euansmith


      • Muninwing

        he started as a classically trained artist. he did his arbitrary capitalization for visual purposes, much like his line breaks.

        Ben Franklin capitalized any word he thought want important or needed emphasis. reading his essays and journals is less than fun for many reasons (dry as sahara toast), and that’s sadly only a minor one.

        i do mine because i’m a terrible typist, and used to autocorrect in Word, and because there are sometimes things i want to pay due respect to… but the goal of communication is to be understood. and the internet is the new wild west, so we create our own rules here.

  • Ancalagon

    These rules only applies to models/units with the Chapter Tactics rule. SW/BA/DA etc has neither. They are their own chapters with their own sets of rules. They are not Chapters following the rules from Codex:SM under no circumstances, so why would they follow the rules for something only specific SM chapters have?

    It actually states “The rules will often refer to a model, character, or unit by its chapter, in all cases… this refers to a model WITH THE CHAPTER TACTICS RULE”. The sentence following that one states “If a unit contains models (IE MODELS WITH THE CHAPTER TACTICS RULE” drawn from two different chapters (Again, SW/BA/DA are not SM Chapters. They’re their own separate codexes Factions). Even though they are Space Marine Chapters per se they are different Factions, and follow different special rules.

    An army of Ultramarines with SW and/or BA allies will only ever include 1 type of models with the chapter tactics rule. Thus there is no conflict mixing the two.

    • barroomhero

      Totally agreed. We should actually start to sort all post by “newest”, since I already posted nearly the same just 10 minutes before. ;D

      • Aezeal

        Not agreeing.. they have their own books w/o chapter tactics.. but they are clearly their own chapters so other spacemarines led by them cannot use their tactics.

        I see it as: if there is a mix in tactics (a part of the unit does’t know the tactics) then that tactic cannot be used and the space marines have to fall back on their “basic” training/tactics common to all space marines. That is the same for the chapters with their own tactics. Blood angels don’t know the Ultramarine tactics so can’t order the use of them by the squad they lead.

        • barroomhero

          You are mixing evrything. Sm-Tactics give them different Special Rules. And since they have these Special Rules, they can “give” them to units of Blood Angels, for example. It doesn’t work the other way round, because BA have armywide Special Rules which only apply to them. But since SM and BA are two different Codizes, a SM with Chapter Tactics White Scar can “give” his “Hit and Run” to a unit of Death Company, because they are Battle Brothers and Hit and Run is “herited” by the unit this Character (the White Scar) joins. Not simple but very clear. These are the rules 😉

  • brandon hopfensperger

    Dark Angels have grim resolve now in the new codex. It’s basically their chapter tactic. Space wolves and blood angels do not have a keyword rule because they were before the new space marine codex came out.

    • barroomhero

      It is in fact an armywide Special rule, as I stated below. The same goes for SW and BA. And THAT is because they are an army of their own with an own Codex 😉 (And no Chapter Tactics!!!)

  • Dogberry1982

    How is this even a question? SW, BA, and DA don’t have chapter tactics, so it is clearly A.

    As someone else mentioned, if you say its B, then you would have to allow SW, BA, and DA to use the formations and units from the SM book because “They are space marine chapters”.

    Can’t have it both ways…

    • Aezeal

      Yeah I think we could have it both ways.

  • Matt Lassen

    So those in camp B won’t mind if I start using my dreadnoughts from BA and SW as having 4 attacks base? They are space marine dreadnoughts right?

    • Lee D Boosey

      I for 1 wouldnt have a problem with either the SWs or BAs dreads having 4A (although it does raise the question of how many As would Bjorn and Murderfang then have since they both already have 4). And I would’ve liked this to have been FaQ’d already as it doesn’t make sense for there to be such a difference in the 1st place

      • GaryT

        I agree. Death Company dreadnought has always had one more base attack that standard dreads so should have base attacks of 5. GW just cannot be bothered to spend any time FAQing this.

    • Aezeal

      I woulnt; mind that. not sure that would be correct though.

  • Diego Moreno

    The first two sentences are the key here: “The Chapter Tactics special rule represents a group of rules that are specific to a given Chapter. When choosing an army, you must make a note of which Chapter each unit with the Chapter Tactics special rule is drawn from”
    So NO a Blood angels, Space Wolf, Dark Angel or Grey Knight, although being Adeptus Astartes, dont count as comming from any Chapter since they dont have the Chapter tactics special rule. Do these units lose any of their special rules for beign with an ally? No, since the rules for one codex doesnt apply to the other.

  • barroomhero

    And here is one reason for all the fluffbunnies, too:
    Dark Angels, Space Wolves and Blood Angels are VERY different from their Astartes Brothers! They didn’t agree on the Codex Astartes written by Guillaume! THAT is why they have their own rules and don’t have Chapter Tactics! ;);)

    • Aezeal

      Yeah all the more reason for them not to know the tactics or use them

      • barroomhero

        But they CAN use them since some Special Rules can be “inherited” by a unit joined by a Character of a Battle Brother. (Rules for Allies!!!) It is clearly in the rules. Just read them 😉

    • David Seed

      BA are codex

      • Muninwing

        really? so everyone gets Death Company?

        • David Seed

          Sorry. Fluff wise. BA (and DA) follow the codex, unlike Space wolves, and black templars. 1000 marines, 10 companies blah blah.

          • Muninwing

            there’s more to the CA than that…

            and DA don’t only have 100 Deathwing. they have far more than that… and their companies are different. and they have an all-bike company of unnumbered size as well. and they have control over successor chapters. and they have a fleeting love affair with plasma (or do they?) and their own psychic discipline. and they have different traditions and structures via the Inner Circle. and they don’t ascribe to the tactical advice in the CA, instead being highly focused on their own personal mission.

            nope. not compliant. they might look it from the outside, but that’s because they don’t want to get purged by the Inquisition. so they do as good a job as they can keeping a low profile.

            BT are different, but partly that’s because they are a crusading ship-based chapter, and they have adapted to their crusades. i’ve gotten the impression that every ship-based crusading legion is at least encouraged to use their structure, but that was from when they had their own codex.

  • nonafel


    We knew about this rule issue before the codex was even released

    The primary issue is that you cannot legally take models in the detachment without the chapter tactics rule, so aside from dreads no vehicles. This “writing” just shows someone shouldn’t listen to people that don’t understand the rules.

  • GammaGoblin

    Here is the most telling part of the rule: “The book often refers to a model, character or unit by its Chapter. IN ALL CASES, this refers to a model, character or unit with the Chapter Tactics special rule.”

    RAW. “In all cases…” without a FAQ, the CT are not invalidated unless both models have different tactics defined by C:SM. The other books aren’t affected.

  • Jeremy Schellpeper

    Where is the confusion? Anytime any model from the CSM Codex is in a mixed unit with any different Chapter Tactic (from any source) the CSM book requires that neither Chapter Tactic prevails. This is not a function of the “other” Chapter Tactic Codex it is a function of the CSM Codex.
    If you play a CSM model you have to follow those rules, it is the downside to attaching a CSM model to Space Wolf, Blood Angel, or Dark Angel unit.

    • Frequent Respawn

      DA, SW and BA do not have Chapter Tactics.

      • barroomhero

        And a Codex of their own with their OWN rules! 😉

    • euansmith

      “Where is the confusion?”

      In the souls of men…

    • Pascalnz

      you know, DA BA and SW don’t have chapter tactics, and yet they can join each other and not lose their abilities….hold on a sec!:)… maybe the chapter tactics rule is only meant for chapters with the chapter tactics rules?
      If you joined a skittari character and a sisters character to a unit of ultra’s they don’t lose their chapter tactics….becasue they don’t have chapter tactics of their own…Just like BA DA and SW’s.

      It’s just a basic rules thing. Stop trying to mix fluff and rules so much.. yikes

  • GaryT

    I’m going to agree with the majority here by looking at it with common sense and adding that this article is a bit of a waste of time. A unit only has chapter tactics if all models within that unit are of the same faction, i.e. chapter, or a founding chapter using their originating chapter’s tactics. A Space Wolf would not get hit and run if in a White Scars unit, the same as if a friendly Astra Militarum Commissar would not get bolter drill if he was attached to some Imperial/Crimson Fist tactical marines. There is no confusion, it is as clear as day, time to move on.

    • GammaGoblin

      For your Hit and Run example, the Space Wolves don’t get that special rule. The WS model still retains it though, so if a WS character joins a SW unit they benefit from it since only one model in the unit needs the rule.

      • GaryT

        Not really since all models within that unit need to have the same rule/faction for it to take effect. I guess it would be a bit like a outflanking/infiltrating unit with an independent character attached to it that does not have that same rule. It would mean that the unit would not be able to outflank/infiltrate because of that attached character.

        • barroomhero

          As s i said, read the rules!

        • GammaGoblin

          “The book often refers to a model, character or unit by its Chapter. IN ALL CASES, this refers to a model, character or unit with the Chapter Tactics special rule.”

          Space Wolves aren’t a Chapter as defined by the above, so the WS model would keep his chapter tactics benefit.

      • barroomhero

        This is very correct according to the rules. Just read the rules, folks! And by that, I mean not only the SM-Codex, but the other Codizes and the rulebook as well. And just stop making up rules by common sense or other crap! ;D

  • euansmith

    I wonder if our chums at BoLS Mission Control run a competition on who can get the most comments?

    • GaryT

      and would the same competition rules also apply to BoLS representatives that are not part of the BoLS Mission Control faction or would the non Mission Control dudes also gain those rules?

      • euansmith

        Dude, you’ve just meta’d the meta!

        • GaryT

          lol – yeah, thought I’d just do something crazy.

  • Emprah

    What a bunch of grots.

    The rules are clear that it only refers to Chapter tactics rule. Which is only present for the Faction: Space marines, not Blood Angels, Dark Angels, Grey Knights or Space Wolves, nor any Chaos marines that came from a traitor chapter like Red Corsairs.

    Now from a lore standpoint they are of course chapters. But when does tabletop rules follow the lore? Point me to my 3 wound, WS10,BS10,T10 and I10 space marines? Oh, they aren’t in tabletop? What about Tancred? Where are his special venerable dreadnoughts rules? There are none?

    So there, the table top game follows the rules, not the lore. End of story.

    • Deathwing

      Someone has long forgotten WD300 and the legendary MOVIE MARINES!

      • Deathwing

        They might not have been toughness 10 but they did have stunt doubles

  • Ben_S

    The rule is pretty stupid whatever the correct interpretation. Imperial Fists lose their tactics if joined by an Ultramarine, but not if joined by an IG officer. How does that make sense? They should simply have said that the whole unit must possess the tactics, so being joined by anyone without means they lose the special rules. That would make more sense and avoid these arguments.

  • RAW vs RAI again with two codexes not yet update …

  • Hmm, going against the grain on this one. RAW states Chapter Tactics rules, BA and SW don’t have Chapter Tactics rules so I would say RAW indicates Ultramarines tac marines with a Sanguinary Priest benefit from Chapter Tactics.

  • Deathwing

    I can see the argument from the one camp but as others have said you have to throw common sense logic out the window when the rules clearly state how this should work. As space wolves, blood angels, dark angels and grey knights do not have chapter tactics they are not considered chapters for purposes of the rule as written
    As such we defer to the big rule book for special rules and characters joining units.

    Will it get changed as they update the other books? maybe. Or maybe they want this to work as intended so you buy a second codex and different color paints.

  • Xodis

    “Camp A)

    Is of the option that only codex…”

    “Camp B)

    Others seem to venomously insist…”

    Well there is no bias here, lol

  • foulestfeesh13 .

    As stupid as the rule is BA, SW and DA units/ characters would be able to join or be joined by white Scars units/ characters and benefit from the hit and run special rule, the same way BA units/ characters would get counter attack if joined by a SW unit/ character.

  • Brandon Anders

    It’s not a rules conundrum when the rules are clear. Blood Angels, Space Wolves, and Dark Angels do not have the Chapter Tactics rule, and RAW do not break Chapter Tactics if joined to someone like White Scars.

    Whether or not this makes sense fluff-wise is a different matter.

  • Grand Master Belial

    As I read it, if a “unit” contains marines from different chapters then the entire unit loses their Chapter Tactics. So if you have a Dev Squad with marines from two different chapters/lineages. They don’t benefit from each chapter’s tactics and would instead lose all benefits of Tactics.

    It seems to apply mostly to characters that join units of different chapters. A White Scar Lord that joins an Ultramarine Assault squad will wipe out the combined unit’s chapter tactics while they are combined. But once they are two autonomous units, their tactics return but do not confer upon the other unit.

    • Pascalnz

      Marines with two different chapter tactics are in a unit, bam no stuff from chapter tactics gets used. The section is under the chapter tactics heading[not in the pic] and only works for guys in the SM faction… which this book is about.

      Any other battle brother could join an SM unit and they’d keep their tactics, be they IG, Sisters, grey knights, BA, DA, SW, Inquisition etc etc.

      The RAW is crystal clear, and the fact that all the other booked chapters are so divergent they need completely unrelated rules, does kind of scream RAI as well.

      I’m quite ill and just reread your post and you might be agreeing with me…ah well, I’ll just leave this here anyway:)

  • ChubToad

    Saddly BA, SW and DA don’t have the Chaper Tactics Special rule, so the don’t invalidate anything, even if they are considered space Marines or Adeptus Astartes. The Chapter Tactics special rule is a Codex SM exclusive rule which should tell you that mixing Codex SM with Codex BA, SW or DA don’t invalidate Cahpter Tactics. It says right there on the rules: “… in al cases, this refers to a model, character or unit with the Chapter Tactics special rule that is drawn from the given chapter.” Camp A it is.

  • Viratin

    You have to consider the context that it’s using the word “Chapter” in for this paragraph AND the one beforehand. It helps spell out the meaning of the word “Chapter” in the previous paragraph.

    “The Chapter Tactics special rule represents a group of rules that are specific to a given Chapter.”

    While not an ironclad wording, it does spell out for us the intent of this section. In short: the rules referring to Chapters in this section of THIS codex are referring to models that have the Chapter Tactics special rule. This section of this codex is clearly talking only about the Chapter Tactics special rule. Now, if we reach the point at which new releases after this refer to other codices’ special rules as “Chapter Tactics: Dark Angels” or “Chapter Tactics: Space Wolves”, then we’ll revisit this issue.

    • Muninwing

      DA did in fact come out after, and does not contain that wording…

      • Viratin

        Yeah. It could be that they have no intention of making other codices with “Chapter Tactics” as a special rule, or perhaps the newest editions of DA and Space Marines were being written at the same time and thus they weren’t designed off one another. I’m not a GW codex developer, so I have no idea how that process actually works.

  • biodon13

    Pretty disgusted that this got published…there really is no question as to what the rules intend. If there are 2 camps, its A) the ones who can read…and B) the ones who cant.

  • TweetleBeetle

    As is always the case with 40k, the rules are easy to understand. BA, SW, DA, and GK’s don’t have Chapter Tactics, so the rule doesn’t apply to them. The end.

    Arguments about rules come largely from two camps anymore:

    1. Those who want to either exploit or pull the rug out from under something. They will twist and bend, and start sentences with, “well technically…” followed by inserting things that just aren’t reasonable to assume in a permissive rules set.

    2. Those who want to be a part of the vocal online hate for GW (yet never leave the games or forum discussions), and thus must persistently make rules seem more complicated than they are to complain about otherwise relatively sound rules design.

    The game has more layers and complexity than any other right now, so areas will occasionally cloud, but this one – like many others – are easy to solve by reading.

  • Andrew Thomas

    Pretty obviously the latter, although it’s weird that there is a dearth of “a unit consisting solely of models from this faction…” clauses in the rules material for the other books, which makes it a little better to take ICs from those books than to put SM ICs into other books’ units.

  • David Seed

    So prefered enemy space marines only applies to c:sm not BA, DA, GK or SW.

    • David Seed

      And actualy by extention Chaos SPACE MARINES

  • Mordrot

    The fact that people use this to commit shenanigans is enough evidence it should not be allowed

  • Zingbaby

    This sort of crap is why I agree with the “Jervis 2002 post” and why I’m on board with AoS.

    These types of arguments, the constant online negativity and stark unreasonable behavior are only pushed by the “competitive” community. That doesn’t happen with reasonable folks in a casual setting.

    • Muninwing

      … which implies that you think that Camp B (the “noncompliant chapters that don’t have CT still lose their version of what makes them unique” one) is automatically right, and that anyone who disagrees with you is guilty of “unreasonable behavior.”

      i’m not surprised.

      the most negativity i see here is your attacks here. you’re the very problem you are crying about.

      this is a reasonable argument. and it’s a logic puzzle. discussion and trying to figure it out, after clearing out the reactionary and foolish, is a game in and of itself, and can be a rewarding and fun experience. unless someone like you comes along and starts making problems.

      i’m not a competitive player. i like to have fun. but i also like misconceptions and assumptions to be cleared up respectfully.

      there’s a certain language to writing rules. and it’s not hard to understand or follow, if the rules are not terribly written, or if the rules are substantial enough to qualify the relevant situations.

      and you are ignoring that language in favor of a ridiculous assumption that has nothing to do with the rules.

      then you are applying a petty, immature judgment upon those who disagree with you in order to discredit and/or humiliate them.

      “i can’t believe that anyone would believe A (opinion) — they MUST just be making this illogical (judgment) claim because (judgment) they plan on using it to their advantage, (judgment) so they are the very kinds of players that make the game less fun for everyone (judgment)” and a complete lack of an actual logical argument. it’d be one thing if you had a reason other than “it’s so obvious…” to back it up, but you don’t.

      this judgment and condescension is built upon your own misunderstanding of the rules, of the circumstances under which people are creating their opinions (like “actually reading the rules” and “understanding what the rule is stating” and “not making assumptions”), and of the motivations and approaches of your fellow players. but you boil it all down to an attack against others.


      and before you backpedal and start to say “well, i didn’t actually say any of that…” — you did make the claim that this kind of argument (which has been civil) is “constant online negativity” and that “this doesn’t happen with reasonable folks” and that “stark unreasonable behavior are only pushed by the ‘competitive’ community”

      none of which are true.

      and all of which imply attack, judgment, and condescension on a fictitious sect of “others” who are not actually acting the way you claim they are.

      • Zingbaby

        Hah wow dude settle down… I’ve taken NO STANCE on this rules “debate” what-so-ever. Your entire _insane_ diatribe is based on nothing but your own assumption.

        You are taking this all WAY too seriously man.

      • Zingbaby

        To be totally clear I don’t give any fracks which “Camp” is right or wrong… I do however find it unreasonable that 2 adults cannot figure out these sort of ‘differences’ amicably and frankly, rather easily, and in the very worse case with a dice roll.

        To see people constantly reverting to feral, mouth foaming anarchy just because a rule isn’t clear is a sad joke on gamers.

        • Muninwing

          did you bother to read the comments? before you started trashing the theoretical adults who can’t agree, nobody was being unreasonable.

        • bginer

          You help to create the anarchy with your snide comments. I remember back to when the Tau book came out and the discussion on how many weapons a crisis suit can take.

          Remember your post on that? I do. A video of WRONG, WRONG, WRONG etc. starring Dr. House. What makes it stick in my mind was when the FAQ came out, and you! Were WRONG, WRONG, WRONG etc.

          Please don’t try and act the innocent here. You’re one of the biggest instigators on this board along with wibbling and others.

          • Zingbaby

            Wow talk about a swing and a miss… instigator, maybe. But I have no f’n clue who Dr. House is and what that means.

            I did post a thanksgiving turkey that looked like a Tau crisis suit once though. 🙂

  • Matthew Prindle

    A space wolf joining a unit of white scars would not remove chapter tactics in the same way that a tech priest dominus joining a unit of white scars would not remove chapter tactics. Neither the space wolf character nor the tech priest have the chapter tactics special rule. That is what the rule says; it refers only to models with the ‘chapter tactics’ special rule. The fluff has space wolves being a “chapter”, but as they don’t have the chapter tactics rule, the rule to which this article is referring has no bearing on them at all.

    • Well said. It’s obvious that Space Wolves are a “Chapter” as you said, and most people might house-rule it to count them as a Chapter, but it’s not RAW.

  • Méchante

    OR you can do it the GW “Forge The Narrative”-way by throwing a Dice to decide.

  • If one codex is going to update or invalidate the rules for another codex shouldn’t one apply the updates and invalidation in their totality? The rules for scouts and dreadnoughts also changed in the new marine book, if logic says we have to use rules from one codex for another than we should also be changing the way scouts and dreadnoughts work. However that is not what has happened in the past, so why would we use one stand alone codex to change another? It would be consistent, but then lets be fully consistent and not just selectively consistent, after all, selectively consistent isn’t consistent at all. 😉

    • Muninwing

      in 5th, the SM got a new codex that upped the save from stormshields to a 3++

      in the FAQs that followed just in time for the ‘ardboyz tournaments (back before GW started to shoot itself in the man-parts by withdrawing from all the activities that had kept the community healthy and thriving), they (or the guy they contracted to write the faqs, “yakbreath”) stated that the discrepancy between the two pieces of equipment were up to players to decide what to do with them… but acknowledged that the rules technically said that the SS for non-compliant/independent SM armies were 4++ and there was no reason to change that.

      i addition to being the very opposite of what a FAQ is for (neither giving a definite answer, nor potentially being used as a method of balancing/fixing/updating an army, nor being concise and direct in its answer), it made it pretty clear that GW’s stance is that each book released is a completely independent look at the game, and just because things are similar doesn’t mean they are the same.

      so most events, regardless of whether it was fair or balanced, just played RAW, and screwed over the DA/BA/BT players.

      party line was that if the book was different, then it did not change the other books. add that to the conspicuous lack of the words “chapter tactics” in those noncompliant codexes and it should be clear what GW both intended and created.

      • AKOF

        Sadly yes, this is why also certain pieces of equipment are priced differently even though they were released around the same time. Inquisition still gets old school chimeras and cheaper valkyries even though they came out like a month before the new Imperial Guard stuff. Different branches have different access to differing levels of quality of equipment.

  • euansmith
    • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

      mmmmm, artificial flavour, my favourite!

  • Another clear breakdown of RAI vs RAW. The only reason BA for example don’t have chapter tactics is that it was just easier to give them all Furious Charge in their own book. Now we have to wait for another FAQ that will never come…

    • Muninwing

      is it?

      the DA book came out after that rule was written, and they don’t have CT either.

      CT is for codex-compliant armies (and their successors, hello BT). the divergent armies have always been treated differently — different equipment, different vehicles, different rules. and no Chapter Tactics.

      i think because Baer came out with it, it feels like it’s another attempt at legal cheating. but it’s pretty consistent and explicit. i think he’s right, that it seems pretty gray.

      RAW is that there is no loss on either side if the attached unit is BA/DA/SW. RAI… might be also, provided the allies matrix says they can be interjoined like that.

      • But what fluff wise is the difference between an Imp fist chaplain and a BA one in terms of battle prowess. Would the BA one really be able to adapt to the white scars way of war if he joined them, while the imp fist would just handicap it and be handicapped in turn?

        To me it feels like the idea is that when space marines of different chapters (in the fluff sense of the word) fight together, they rely more on the teachings of the codex astartes rather than the styles of their chapter, because that is the baseline for everyone. The fluff at the top of page 189 sm codex goes to support this line of logic as well.

        • Muninwing

          fluff is an interesting argument…

          but in the fluff all marines are S7 T8 I7 giants who can take entire cities individually. so…

        • Muninwing

          but the BA/GK/DA/SW *don’t* use the codex as a guide. that’s the point. that’s why they get their own books.

          the BA chaplain would be along for the ride because they aren’t schooled in rowboat’s big book of fail. they do things their own way, so they are better at adaptation.

          at least that’s what i get out of it.

          • All of them do, except for SW, to some degree or less. They are just divergent in many ways.

            Blood Angels for instance though use the same chapter organization as a standard codex chapter.

            And if we wanted to talk about throwing the codex out the window, then why does this rule affect the Black Templars, who are radically divergent from it?

          • Muninwing

            oh, i have no idea why the BT are affected. their crusade pattern is pretty divergent, though not in many other ways.

            but they get the special vehicles that other SM get, so they have some benefits in exchange for this pretty nonexistent “advantage(?)” that we are arguing about.

            then again, with their penchant for charging forward, the BT and carcharodons are really the only chapters who would benefit from including BA/DA characters in their lists.

          • Except everyone wants Sanguinary priests. ..

  • AKOF

    Like most rules arguments in 40K, the two camps are people that can read, and those who cannot.

    • Muninwing

      sadly, it’s more “those who assume the rules should work one way” and “those who look at the actual way the rules are written”

      after reading Rob’s take on it, i was pretty sure that if SM of two different colors were in a unit, then their different magic powers fizzle…

      but a unit needs “chapter tactics” for that to happen. and the magic of the DA, BA, and SW are similar but not the same. they don’t list “chapter tactics” anywhere. so they would not apply to this loss of rules.

      it feels like it should be an oversight… but when it’s explicitly written a particular way in four different locations, that’s too much to be an oversight and it looks pretty deliberate.

  • AKOF

    And here I thought this post would be about whether Iron Hands vehicles get It Will Not Die, or if in fact, they are Iron Hands models and not just generic C:SM vehicles.

  • Leviticus Stroud

    Blood Angels, Space Wolves, Dark Angels and Grey Knights all have different codex books, access to different equipment, different Tactic cards, different Warlord Traits, and different formations.

    They are Astartes, but they are not ‘Space Marines’ and do not count as such unless a special rule specifically states they do for the purposes of that reference/rule (eg Veterans of the Long War).

    Now things like Grim Resolve may be the ‘equivalent’ of a Chapter Tactic, but it is not one under the rules. To argue that it is, particularly when the revised C:DA came out after the new restriction on Chapter Tactics was added in the revised C:SM, is effectively to also be stating that every thing else in the two codex books is interchangeable- and it clearly isn’t!
    If it was I could take a combined arms detachment with Ravenwing, Centurions, Deathwing, and Thunderfire cannons in it- and I can’t. Azrael leading an honour guard out of a Storm Raven might be nice, but it’s only happening if there are allies present.

    As for it making sense in background, quite frankly how a unit of Iron Hands terminators can be joined by Pedro Kantor and the result is that Kantor becomes a worse shot and the Iron Hand cybernetics switch off beggars belief. If you think that matches background…


    C:DA was released AFTER C:SM and they didn’t give them the “Chapter Tactics” special rule (i.e. CT Ravenwing, CT Deathwing or CT Dark Angels) when they very easily could have done, I find this to be a rather telling point in this particular debate.

    That aside, RAW, it’s pretty clear how this should be played. Wolves and the Angels do not have the “Chapter Tactics” special rule so this clause regarding conflict within a unit in no way applies to them.

    Debate can rage on regarding what people “think” or “feel” about what GW meant to happen but that doesn’t change what we have in front of us, written rules which dictate how the game is played. Is it a bit cheesy? Yeah, probably, but we’ve seen worse. Want to argue that SW, DA & BA are “Chapters” and therefore SHOULD be considered to have Chapter Tactics? Fine. But by that same logic can they pick and choose rules from C:SM to use themselves? Formations? Wolf Lords on bikes giving SWs Bikes as Troops?

    • Mr_Pickles

      Can my Orks have Chapter Tactics while we’re at it? I’d love biker troops outside of Zhadsnark’s Warlord Trait…

      • euansmith

        Woit Skarz!

      • Muninwing

        that they have bikes is now their “chapter tactics”

        if another character from a different faction joins them, they lose their bikes.

  • ted1138

    Seems simple. If you want to use a chapter tactic, all members of the unit must be from the same chapter.

    • Muninwing

      yes. and if you don;t have “chapter tactics” then it’s irrelevant. like DA/BA/GK/SW.

      • Emdee

        Yeah, I don’t see any controversy here. It’s pretty clear.

  • Craig Biddulph

    These “discussions” are a very large part of the reason I sold my 40k armies. #30KOnly #30kForPresident

  • Rob brown

    Are you honestly telling me that there are players that mix DA/BA/SW characters with other chapters marines in order to get incremental advantages and double up on special rules?

    And if questioned these players claim that DA, BA and SW don’t count as chapters because of some arcane language in a rule clearly intended to stop people doubling up special rules. Despite DA, BA & SW clearly all being one of the twenty founding chapters.

    I suggest another rule. Don’t play against people who think like this. They are sucking the life out of the game and dragging it down into the mud.

    • Muninwing

      honestly, if i had a good fluff reason, i wouldn;t want to be banned from doing it.

      it doesn’t really matter though… one of the FW successor chapters can mimic any other legion’s Chapter Tactics. so you can already bring a legion that can change what tactics they are using to fit the opponent. that’s far more beardy.

      sad thing is that the last army i started was either going to be IH (because i loved them back in 3rd) or that legion — the Exorcists — because they look cool. i picked IH, and realized that by fielding the bike character i already had, i could make one of the cheeziest HQ in the game that doesn’t have a copyrighted name…

      • Rob brown

        I would allow it, if my opponent came to me and said he wanted to have a character cross for x reason, and we could agree agree something where either or benefited from their special rules, or both and some small benefit was given to one of my models.

        • Muninwing

          see, since the rules are pretty clear, i’d be annoyed at anyone who didn’t “allow it” since it’s not an exploit but a factor of different armies all being under the “imperium” umbrella.

          honestly, if you can think of a way that this gives a serious advantage, i’d love to hear it.

  • Harukae

    Best way to be sure, call GW’s customer service if you absolutely need to know. I’ve had to call them for rules resolution and they’re really good about it.

  • Eric

    One would think, if there are only 2 camps of thinking on the matter clearly some people are agreeing with one another.

  • Shaun Robinson

    I can see both sides of the argument however I agree with Camp B simply because having a model without the Chapter Tatic rule, like a space wolf, in a unit that does have Chapter Tatics me and that not all the models in the unit have the special rules so none of them benefit from it.

  • Larry Mann

    This is not confusing.

  • Craig Biddulph

    These arguments are the exact reason I sold my 40k armies. #30kOnly

  • Dennis J. Pechavar

    It feels like people trying to justify super power cross codex units. RAW I agree it seems to allow the chapter tactics to not be nullified by non C/SM but it really seems douchey. We just got rid of DE Baron Sathonyx/Eldar lists and now we have this. If people didn’t just use this stuff for Deathstars I’d have to problem with it. This is all IMO and I know others play far more competitively than I do.

  • dee

    Why do you guys insisting on deny specific Special Rule in one Codex with totally irrelevant rules from other Codex?
    Nowhere in rules states that C:SM overrides or is the parent of C:BA,DA,SW.
    They are totally diferent Codexes with their own rules. None of them have Chapter Tactics. And Chapter Tactics specifically states that whenever that rule say “Chapter” it means “unit with Chapter Tactics special rule drawn form Chapter”. Simple as that.

    For all you RAI followers: if GW would wanted to change something they easily could do it in new DA codex, but the didn’t. Still Dark Angels are the same as Astra Militarium to Space Marines – totally different army.

    BTW tell me, which rule allows models from C:DA joined to my units of C:SM to nullyfiy my Chapter Tactics, and still the same model from C:DA will not nullify rules of models from C:BA?