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I'm just about done with my current chapter(I have 6 more models to paint.) Frankly, I need a break from painting black and white. So I'm thinking of painting the next couple of units I pick up for another chapter. I just received a box of grey slayers for my WD subscription, so they're definately in the running. However, I want to think things out and perhaps keep things fluffy if I can help it.
I've heard people occasionally talking about Space Marines going out on crusades (not Black Templar Crusades) against So-and-So McNastypants. These crusades may be a single chapter or several, as far as I can tell. The only instances I can think of were during the Horus Heresy and the war on Armageddon. I assume that in most of these situations in any given fight it was only one chapter fighting. However I'm willing to make the jump and say that two chapters could fight more closely to a style exemplified by the Index Astartes and buddy up... because, well, that's what they're going to need to do.
What I'm wondering is which chapters are prone to being in such a group. Even exceptionally anti-social chapters such as Dark Angels have (somewhat) allied with other chapters temporarily, although more likely than not this alliance was rather ill fated for the other chapter. Ultimately I'm going to pick things based on appearances and what I think I may want to build an additional army out of. I have no problem boldly ignoring fluff. However I'd prefer to keep things somewhat realistic if I can at all help it.
Most chapters will go on some sort of a crusade at some point. For example, if a system is held by the orks and the imperium wants it cleared, any chapters that respond will probably go and purge they entire system, particularly zealous chapters may even go as far as to make sure not a single ork lives, even chasing them halfway across the galaxy if some try to flee.
You can pick just about any chapter you want for it.
I would start a 13th company army, there is really no other SM army like them and in the non standard missions they own so easily its not funny.
I would say go for it. there have been times when Chapters have fought together, such as the Baddab uprising, and I can see no fluffy reason why you can't do it. It might be best if, like you mentioned, the Chapters are on a mutual crusade, so I would try to work that in if I were you.
Also Chapters don't necessarily send entire companies to join crusades sometimes there could be a single squad joing a crusade of several Chapters. (i.e technically you could have an Ultrmarine army with a squad of Crimson fists init)
However I don't know how this would work interms of doctrines etc. I suppose the HQ unit would dictate this.
Remember the Dark Angels are already on a self-imposed Crusade along with their 2nd Founding Chapters. Since it is their prime crusade, they get in trouble when it conflicts with a current campaign involving the Dark Angels (13th Black Crusade). It is the only time where the Dark Angels and their penchant for being master tacticians gets fouled. It isn't very tactical to chase after a few renegades when there are bigger matters to consider.Originally Posted by Bob Dole
That said, there are few reasons for a Chapter not to take part in a crusade.
1.) Already on one (Black Templars, Dark Angels, Mantis Warriors)
2.) Not enough marines (Crimson Fists, Salamanders)
3.) Not in the region of the Galaxy
4.) Are a Specialty Chapter with a special mission (Mentors, Custodes (not really a Chapter but you get the idea))
5.) Are Excommunicated (13th and 21st Foundings)
6.) Are controlled by the Inquisition (Deathwatch, Grey Knights)
Reasons 1-3 can and do get broken. 4 would need a fluffy explanation. 5-6 are a no-go.
You can model the marines to follow any chapter iconography you want. You can even do this in tournaments if you want. As long as you have a fluff reason for it, and they follow set rules, you're fine. So basically, your army must all follow the same rules, doctrines, or special rules. I.E. no rule mixing such as "stubborn" dark angels with a"advancing" black templars, or blood angel death company marines with an Iron Hands iron father. As long as your not trying to mix rules, just mixing the models, your fine.