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So, I called up 4 different GW stores and got 2 different answers. Time to post my question here.
It is a multi-part question.
Some say a retinue is a unit purchased as an upgrade to an IC. As such, the IC cannot leave that unit until it’s destroyed. Some say Honor Guards and Command Squads can be fielded separately from their IC, though seemingly purchased as an upgrade to an IC, some say they can’t. Is there a definite answer?
Some say IC’s being counted as upgrade characters to their retinue means they cannot be targeted independently in melee as a Sergeant can’t. Some say they can as all ICs can, that the purpose behind “upgrade character” status simply means they can’t act as an IC (i.e. leaving and joining other units) until the retinue is destroyed.
So in short, the two questions are:
1 - Are Honor Guards and Command Squads considered “retinues”?
2 - Can IC’s be targeted independently in melee while a part of their retinue?
Even the boys at the GW stores don’t seem to have a consensus on this. I’d like to know if there is a consensus here.
Honour Guards and Command Squads are not retinues, In the SM Codex you may include one HG/CS for each Captain/Master in your army. Both are a separate unit and should not be treated as such, the same can be said for Techmarines and a unit of servitors.
So as to your questions
1. No they are separate squads as there is no rule stating that they are a retinue.
2. No you may not target Independant characters in their retinues as they do not count as an independant character but are considered an 'upgrade character' like that of a sergeant until all members of the retinue are dead. "Ref. Pg. 48 Main rulebook"
Warhammer 40k: Blood Angels, Imperial Guard, Grey Knights, Space Lizards (wolves), Kroot, Witch Hunters, Dark Eldar
Warhammer: Lizardmen, Empire, Vampire Counts, Brettonians, High Elves, Skaven
Definition of a retinue (Yes it is actually defined) pg. 48
"Some Codex books allow you to field characters together with a special unit they cannot leave during the game (Which is notmally called a 'retinue', 'bodyguard' or similar)"
Nowhere in the entries of the Servitors, Command Squad or Honour Guard are you ever prohibited from leaving the unit or even forced to join it in the first place. So the answer is no, they are not a retinue.
As for characters fighting in retinues, the answer is on the same page right below what I just quoted.
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"Forced to join it" I can give ya. But even under the Daemonhunters it does not say the Inquisitor is prohimited from leaving his retinue. It's just assumed. But the definition of a retunue stated above does not mention it's a unit the character is forced to have.Nowhere in the entries of the Servitors, Command Squad or Honour Guard are you ever prohibited from leaving the unit or even forced to join it in the first place. So the answer is no, they are not a retinue.Now don't get me wrong, I've understood retinues to be how both responses are stating it. But within the last week I've had players, veteran players mind you, tell me otherwise. And even GW store employees. I don't know how something that had been so cut and dry has become not so for some. I blame the following.As for characters fighting in retinues, the answer is on the same page right below what I just quoted.
-Stating that a retinue does not have to be called a retinue. That leaves a door wide open to interpretation.
-Not properly defining "upgrade character".
-And not stating in the rules under ICs in melee that ICs in a retinue are the exception and cannot be independantly targeted.
Those are the three things that I see are the main sticking points between players when they argue the rules on retinues.
Oh, and I've read all the rules and wording on this and can see both sides of the argument. I tend to agree with both replies personally. But it isn't helping when trying to settle debates.
Thanks for the replies.
Last edited by Dristram; January 25th, 2009 at 03:29. Reason: Adding stuff
Marneus Calgar can have 3 Honour guards, if the unit is truly a retinue how exactly would this function? Just a little wrench for the mahcine mind you
The thing is, none of the criteria, specific term of retinue or bodyguard or a unit the character is unable to leave, are met by the Honour Guard, Command Squad or servitors. So the arguement that the criteria aren't neccesarily met by all retinues isn't a good one as you could easily use this to argue that any unit in the army is a retinue.
My Vanguards must be a retinue because their entry never states the character must join them or cannot leave and they aren't listed as a "retinue" either.
EDIT: as a side note, I know it sux that there are only two given criteria to judge if it's a retinue or not, but until a FAQ is released, we have little choice in the matter.
Last edited by Mastershake; January 25th, 2009 at 04:02.
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followers = a unit with retinue in the name. Might be an actual retinue, but might not.
That is the definition.
It doesn't matter what the unit is called.Even if a unit were to be called "Mr Hack'n'Slash's Retinue" it wouldn't rules-wise be a retinue if Mr Hack'n'Slash could leave it or if it could be taken seperately from Mr Hack'n'Slash. Finding retinue, honour guard, body guard, etc in the name does not make it a retinue.
Therefore a DH Inquisitors follower unit is not an actual retinue. The Inq is not an upgrade character and can be individually targeted in CC.
Thus they fix on the name of their unit and say something along the lines of "...its called an honor guard/body guard/retinue so therefore it is a retinue and you can't hit my IC, nyah nyah..."
As I stated before, the name of a unit is completely irrelevant to whether it is a retinue or not. There are two criteria:
1) is the unit purchased with the same FOC slot as the IC?
2) can the IC leave the unit?
If the (respective) answers are 1 - yes and 2 - no; then the unit is a retinue and the IC is an upgrade character. Otherwise the unit is not a retinue and the IC can both leave the unit in-game and is always a separate unit for the purposes of allocating attacks.And thus none of these units are retinues as defined on page 48 of the rulebook. Again, seeing the specific term "retinue" or "bodyguard" in a unit's name does not make it an actual retinue.Originally Posted by Mastershake
To answer the original post:The "some" you refer to here are wrong.Originally Posted by Dristam
Just being purchased as an upgrade to an IC does not make the unit a retinue. It also must be a unit that the IC cannot leave until it is destroyed.
Note that the second sentence is incorrect - preventing an IC from leaving a unit is not a consequence of the unit being purchased with the character (ie it is not an "As such" circumstance; the one does not logically follow from the other).Yes, Honour and Command squads are fielded as separate squads from the IC. Why? Simply because it doesn't say that the unit must be fielded with the IC.Originally Posted by DristamThis is correct, an IC in a retinue (as defined by p48 ) is an upgrade character and cannot be individually targeted in CC.Originally Posted by DristamThis is incorrect, and also superfluous. For an IC to have a retinue, it must be explicitly stated that the IC cannot leave the unit. The IC is already constrained, even before the upgrade character ruleset is taken into account.Originally Posted by Dristam
Also, they can't have it both ways. If an IC cannot leave a unit because it is an upgrade character then it also cannot be targeted indinvidually in CC.NoOriginally Posted by DristamIf it is truly a retinue as defined on page 48 then no. Otherwise (eg a unit called a retinue, but which does not qualify under p48 ) then yes.Originally Posted by Dristam
I trust that this issue is now done to death and will not reappear in another few weeks - again?
Last edited by Corianis; January 25th, 2009 at 08:08. Reason: typo and correcting automatic smilies
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If the character is not allowed to leave the unit before it's wiped out, that unit is a retinue. It really is that simple! I don't know of any unit in the game where this status is ambiguous. It is quite clear for Inquisitor Lords that the IC rules do not even begin to apply to an ILord at all until his henchmen are dead. You don't even need to refer to the core rule book for that one. It's all spelled out in the codex.
*None* of the rules for ICs apply in any way at all to such a model until such time as his/her entire unit is dead. What is ambiguous about the definition of an upgrade character? It's a model who has different stats and equipment that the rest of the unit, but is otherwise treated in every way as a trooper in the unit, exactly as stated on p47.
Being a credible rules guru as never been a qualification for employment at GW. Being enthusiastic about the game and willing to follow selling policies come well ahead of knowing the nitty gritty about fine points on rules. It also doesn't help when your rulings are always taken as law and people who talk back get kicked out of the store, not much motivation to learn and make sure you really are right . It's similar for veteran players too. This is a rule that has changed substantially and flipflopped and had many tweaks over the past 3 editions of the game. It's to be expected that people who've played for a long time will have a jumble of bits from different versions of the books in their head.
Either way, what I'm trying to say is, I don't think this one is muddled or ambiguous if you take the 'read the book and do what it says' approach, and don't let people who are themselves confused about changes for the new edition sow confusion in your own mind
Thanks very much for the reply guys. People who are good at making logic arguments can sure make false information seem right. It is true that I fell victim to this and because it was a new edition, I started to have doubt. Not one, but a few players started me on this. And I thought it was a simple matter of calling up a GW store. And when the answer went against what I thought, I called three more! I still couldn't believe what I was being told which is why I brought it up here.
I think things are cut and dry clear when you read an entry for a true retinue. Then you can see how it's explained and how different it looks compared to the entry for Honor Guards etc.
Can anyone list what the retinues are for 5th Edition?
Thanks again for your time guys.
• Honor Guard
• Command Squad
• Farseer + Warlocks
• Eldrad + Warlocks
• Lord + Incubi and Warriors
• Urien Rakarth + Uber Grotesques
• Officer + Command Squad
• Tyrant + Tyrant Guard
• Broodlord + Genestealers
• Commander + XV8 Bodyguard Team
• Ethereal + Honour Guard (Fire Warriors)
• Inquisitor + Henchmen
• Grey Knight Hero + Grey Knight Terminators
• Inquisitor + Henchmen
• Heroine + Celestians
The only one I don't have in front of me right now is Chaos Space Marines. I assume a Chaos Lord can take a retinue of normal Chaos Marines, but someone will have to confirm that.
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