Force Organization and List Building for 40k 7th edition

The release of 7th edition wasn't a massive overhaul of the previous ruleset, but it was certainly enough of a change to warrant a new edition.  This isn't 40k 6.5, this is indeed 7th edition.  One of the biggest changes in the rules was how armies are constructed.  Now, there's one thing to note here.  A lot of tourneys are adding their own FAQs on how lists should be constructed based on the type of event they want to run, and that is fine.  Below I'm going to go over the basics of list building for both unbound and battle forged armies in 7th edition.
First let's juts cover unbound.  It's pretty quick and simple.  Unbound allows you to field any models you like within the given points level of the game you're going to play.  Could you take ultramarine scouts and use their chapter tactics along with Imperial Fists tac marines? Yes, you can.  You can literally put any models you want on the table. You don't even have to field a HQ.  Just pick a model and nominate it as your "warlord."  The only caveat to unbound is that you must follow the allies matrix in terms of how your models interact with one another in the game. For example you could field a Lord of Change, and a couple of other flying demon princes from Codex Daemons along with an Imperial Knight.  Their factions follow the comes the apocalypse rule which effects how they may deploy and interact with one another.  That's pretty much the limit of it.  Each model scores, but they receive no command benefits at all.  What does this mean?  It means that none of the models, even the troops, in an unbound list can ever contest an objective that is held by troops from a battle forged "objective secured" unit.  Ok, so unbound is covered.
Battle forged armies are, in general, what you're going to see the most of in tourneys and most likely even in your FLGS.  In order to construct a battle forged CAD you need 1 HQ and 2 Troops choices minimum.  From there you have the option to add to the detachment given the limits on the FOC chart in the rulebook.  When you run a CAD from the rulebook you have two command benefits which are very important; the ability to re-roll warlord traits, and objective secured troops.  Note, these command benefits only apply to units chose from the detachment.  Below are some common questions/misconceptions on how battle forged lists are constructed:
- Summoned units in a daemons army are not objective secured. They have the troops battlefield role, but are not objective secured as they were not part of a detachment.
- You can combine units/HQs from codices and their supplements in the same CAD.  i.e. You could have a Chaos Sorcerer from Crimson Slaughter, and a Chaos Lord from Chaos Space Marines codex in the same detachment.  If you use multiple HQs from different sources, the one you deem as your warlord then determines the primary detachment.  Take the example mentioned above; if the Sorcerer is chose as the warlord, Crimson Slaughter is deemed to be the "primary detachment" thus you could take Possessed in the troops slot. If vice versa, the Chaos Lord being the warlord, then the troops choices would come from within the Chaos Space Marines Codex.  The same holds true for other armies as well including Tau and Enclaves, Space Marines and their supplements, etc.
- You cannot ally with the same faction (unless you're Space Marines) using the Allied Detachment rules.  If you want to run, say Chaos Space Marines with another detachment from Crimson Slaughter, that second detachment would have to also be a CAD. You could not use an Allied Detachment.  Note, a lot of tournament organizers are ignoring this intentionally and allowing Allied Detachments within the same faction.
- There is no limit to the number of detachments you can field in 40k 7th edition.  If you want to field 3 or 4 detachments, you may do so.  Tournament organizers are generally restricting this, however according the the rulebook, there is no limit to the number of detachments you may take.
- Formation dataslates do not fall under a CAD.  These are taken in a totally separate formation detachment.  In other words, let's say you wanted to field a Chaos Space Marines CAD with the Hellbrute formation that allows 3 deep striking hellbrutes.  You could field a total of 6 hellbrutes in that setup.  3 from the elites section of your CAD, and the 3 from the formation, which do not occupy a part of the CAD, but are taken as separate units outside of the CAD force structure.
- The new codices that are coming out are including their own detachment setups with their own command benefits.  Unless it specifically states in your codex, you are not required to use these detachments when fielding your army.  For example, within the Orks codex, they have the option to take the detachment presented and utilize those command benefits, or they can build their army according to the CAD set-up in the rulebook receiving the command benefits of a CAD. The same rings true for Space Wolves. This is important to note, because these codex detachments do not have objective secured, which is a benefit of a CAD.
Force construction in 7th edition is wide open, and done so intentionally so the players can get the most out of the models within their collection.  The competitive scene has yet to really get on board with that idea.  Despite the rules being open for you to do these things, it's always wise to get with your opponent first and discuss the type of game you want to play and the number of detachments you intend to field.  Nothing compels you to do this, but it is courteous.  It can be daunting when reading over how to build your forces, especially coming from a previous edition where the rules for such were more tight.
Force Organization and List Building for 40k 7th edition Force Organization and List Building for 40k 7th edition Reviewed by Robert Chandler on 7:50:00 AM Rating: 5

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