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The Twilight of Chambers Militant


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On another board, I saw someone write that the Sisters of Battle hadn't been classified as the Chamber Militant of the Hereticus since 5th Ed. I have the sisters dex, but I hadn't read it cover to cover. My preliminary scan reveals that this is pretty much true.

 

I also just picked up the Grey Knights dex, and I haven't gone cover to cover on it yet either. But after my revelation regarding the sisters, I started skimming for reference regarding their status as the Chamber Militant of the Malleus; once again, it doesn't seem to be there. I don't yet have the Deathwatch Dex, but I suspect the same is true.

 

Then I re-read the Inquisition WD dex, and it doesn't mention Chambers Militant either.

 

So one of the things I had hoped for was greater synergies between the Ordos and their Chambers. It appears, however, that the Chamber Militant concept in general is fading. This makes me sad. I hope that there is an Inquisition campaign some time that revives the concept. I had thought PA would have been a great vehicle for this, but I'm not sure the momentum has been built in with what's been released so far.

 

The great thing about 40k is that it's a sandbox, and in my game universe, the Chamber Militant relationships with their Ordos will persist. Maybe GW will address it when and if we get an Agents of the Imperium dex. Even though I know I have the freedom to play it any way I want, I still hope GW reaffirms it in print.

Edited by ThePenitentOne
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That is, indeed, unfortunate. I really liked the chambers militant concept they introduced in late 3rd; I don't know why they are walking away from it. We seem to increasingly returning to the way things were in early 3rd where the only =][= stuff was a generic inquisitor character you could take from the main rule book. Considering how they've gone all out on stuff I consider quite esoteric compared to Inquisition (Genestealer cults, Adeptus Mechanicus) I can only reason that Inquisition has been really really poor sales-wise :sad.:

 

I suppose this should not surprise me ... I am the only guy I've ever seen fielding any inquisition stuff in all of the tournaments and FLGS gaming I've ever done. I always just figured that was highly anecdotal and meta evidence. But I guess this area isn't unique.

 

I don't rightly understand why =][= isn't more popular. Currently they don't have great rules or support but once upon a time they did and it seems they just never really caught on.


As you say though, 40K is a sandbox and it's easy to make one's armies the way they want. So we can still do Chambers Militant at least fluff-wise and in our army design.

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Obvious question,  but has anybody checked the recent Deathwatch codex to see if there's a similar lack of the term? 

In some ways, I can perhaps understand a de-emphasis as applies labeling institutions which either preceded the associated Ordo, or which may be rather pointedly non-subserviant to said Ordo [looking at you, Grey Knights, in both cases].

The flipside is that if the concept of a Chamber Militant is now more free-standing rather than being tethered to a particular force or codex, there may be greater scope for appropriation for other applications. For example, dedicated Inquisitorial Storm Troopers with significant specializations in Xenos-related operations, permanently integrated into the Ordo Xenos' sphere as part of its 'Chamber Militant', rather than this labelling only being applicable to Deathwatch. 

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I suspect theyve run afould of the classic problem of mixing stuff with Marines, its that people want to field armies of marines (Or Sisters) and are less interested in Inquisitors and assorted hangers on, though things like Inquisimunda show the interest is there, its apparently not for armies. Orders militant make more sense when you are fielding one or maybe two squads of that chamber supporting the Inquisition but the demand was always there to field more and more of those cool specialists (Especially Deathwatch) so GW gave the people what they want, a pure army of those specialists you can add Inquisitors too or just ignore if you dont want to be beholden to them.

Tbh you can easily field them mixed together in the current system just by having a couple of detachments, or adding an Inquisitor to one. Im not sure there is much more GW can add to support this, without possibly falling afoul of the rules being too strong or pointlessly weak, and i say that as someone who has multiple Inquisitorial cadres in the various basing schemes of my Imperial armies :D 

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Once upon a time!

The people who liked inquisitor, eisenhorn and the 3rd ed codexes proly have lots of children an zero time right now

 

Yeah, that pretty much describes me ...

 

But on the other hand I have money that I didn't have back in 3rd Ed. The new Sisters release has me excited enough to carve out some painting and assembling time. It does take a while when you only have maybe 1-2 hours per week to spend on hobby stuff.

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Obvious question,  but has anybody checked the recent Deathwatch codex to see if there's a similar lack of the term? 

 

In some ways, I can perhaps understand a de-emphasis as applies labeling institutions which either preceded the associated Ordo, or which may be rather pointedly non-subserviant to said Ordo [looking at you, Grey Knights, in both cases].

 

The flipside is that if the concept of a Chamber Militant is now more free-standing rather than being tethered to a particular force or codex, there may be greater scope for appropriation for other applications. For example, dedicated Inquisitorial Storm Troopers with significant specializations in Xenos-related operations, permanently integrated into the Ordo Xenos' sphere as part of its 'Chamber Militant', rather than this labelling only being applicable to Deathwatch. 

It doesn't use the term 'Chamber Militant', but this is on page 8 of the Codex

 

THE ORDO XENOS

The Ordo Xenos is the arm of the Inquisition tasked with defeating the alien in all its forms, and as such is counted amongst the Deathwatch's foremost allies.The two organizations frequently work side by side, both on the battlefield and in the strategium. There have been times when a watch fortress' commander has been not a Space Marine, but a Lord Inquisitor - and conversely times when the esoteric forces of the Inquisition have been lad by a battle-brother of the Deathwatch.

 

The two organisations to not always see eye to eye. Inquisitors are accorded a great deal of autonomy, and the more radical members of their order have been known to treat with the alien in order to defeat a greater threat. The extreme reaction this engenders in the Deathwatch, who are by nature of a more puritan bent, has led to bloodshed on more than one occasion. Such situations are rare, however, for both organisations ultimately serve the Imperium in its endless wars against the alien menace.

 

Also on pages 12 and 13, it mentions the Deathwatch's symbol shares its origin with the Inquisition's.

 

So it seems that the days of the Grey Knights and Deathwatch being solely under the purview of the Ordos Malleus and Xenos is over.

Edited by Gederas
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  • 2 weeks later...
I suspect that the "chamber militant" terminology and concept implied subordination to the Inquisition - that the Grey Knights worked for the Ordo Malleus, the Deathwatch worked for the Ordo Xenos, and the Orders Militant of the Adepta Sororitas worked for the Ordo Hereticus. Some of the older lore did much more than imply such a relationship. What we've seen with more recent lore, though, is that the "chambers militant" are aligned with the corresponding ordos and have strong relationships with them, often joining forces, but that they are not subordinate to those ordos. This has gone hand in hand with the obsolescence/diminished use of the "chamber militant" terminology. The synergies are still there, but the relationship - and terminology - has been re-defined.
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