Saturday, May 16, 2015

So...have we been doing it all wrong?...still pondering...

"The American and the British are two peoples, separated by a common language"....Patton, the movie.

So...way back in the beginning of 7th Edition, when formations and detachments all came out, it was driving the American 40K bloggers crazy.

Imagine if you can for a are a Brit.  You wrote some rules.  Nobody seemed to understand what you wrote.  You decide that its not worth explaining.  Later, you write other books, and try to force or illustrate a correction...

Imagine, all along...that each player was to build their army lists in 40K, with every unit fitting into a detachment.  Certain combinations of unit inside the detachment could be combined into formations.  I postulated that on this blog a while back.  And now in recent codexi (Necrons, Eldar), we see it coming to fruition.  Is the 7th Edition rule designer truing to impose what he/she intended all along?  Decurion anyone?

So, for example, should I take a Baal Strike Force detachment (all units get +1I on the assault) from the Blood Angels Codex, and then include within it some of the formations that are in White Dwarf (note, some of the BA formations don't get the +1I - they get other a Decurion the Formation benefits would be added to what those units get within the Detachment)?

Should I take a Combined Arms Detachment from the BRB, and fit within it the Blood Angels Battle Company Formation from the Codex (similar, except that everything is Obsec)?

Why is the BA Battle Company Formation not a Detachment in its own right?

IIRR, in the text in the BRB, it seems on first reading to imply that formations are a combination of units within a Detachment...but again, I'm an American, trying to interpret what was intended within a rulebook written by a Brit, and then translated to American spelling and such, printed in China, and then shipped here via container ship.

If this was true, imagine that the whole idea of taking multiple CADs was not what was intended (libby tac tac, libby tac tac, libby tac tac, libby tac tac, yada yada).  Imagine that a TO implied you could build a tournament list that could have a primary detachment, and then an allied detachment if desired (different from your primary faction).  Imagine you could include within those detachments all the formations for that faction you wanted, but a unit could only belong within a single formation.

Translation attempt  completed.  Sort of.



  1. If only it were that simple. But, the rules for Formations state that each one is a detachment in its own right. It's a hard set grouping of units, with less free choice than a CAD. A uni can only exist within one detachment at a time, so you can't take a CAD, and then qualify a formation with those same units. If the formation used the exact same units as the CAD you built, you'd have to take a duplicate of every single unit to qualify for both the CAD and formation.

  2. LOL, but that what is happening in the new Necron and Eldar Detachments right now! Formations occur singly within them. And that is what I'm surmising.

    The original Detachment was the basic Force Org Chart, and the Apocalypse variants Force Org Charts, and the Cities of Death Force Org Charts. Now we have basic 7th Edition Detachments,

    The original Formations were found in Apocalypse.

    There is no real definition of what is a Formation vs a Detachment - but we are starting to see Formations fit inside Detachments.

    Overall, I bet this experiment on unit organization will eventually get clarified further in 8th Edition....

    I'd expect that at some point, you may see an event that tells all players that you can have one primary detachment and one allied detachment - but they can place inside those detachments units organized into formations so long as the detachment requirements are not broken, and units do not fall into more than one formation. Of course, the allied detachment cannot be the same faction as the primary detachment.

    There is no difference in what I just wrote and what we are already seeing. It will be interesting if the GW codex writers continue on this path.

    1. I don't understand. Formations are defined in the BRB as "Formations are a special type of Detachment, each a specific grouping of units renowned for their effectiveness on the battlefields of the 41st Millennium."

      You can't use the units selected to form a Formation as part of a CAD, AD, or other formation.

      The Decurion from the Necron codex is a bunch of Formations that unlock specific rules when taken in fixed combinations. You can take nothing but a single formation from within the Decurion as many times as you like without taking the prerequisite formations, you'll just not gain any of the Decurion bonuses.