Rules we Get Wrong: Allying

In an online warhammer 40k community I'm a member of someone brought up an idea for a list.  The list featured a Combined Arms Detachment of Chaos Space Marines with an allied detachment of Crimson Slaughter.  I made the comment (not trying to be a dick or a rules lawyer) about how his list was cool, but unfortunately illegal under the current 7th edition rules.
Since the launch of 7th edition earlier in 2014, players have been scratching their heads over how to build an army under the present ruleset.  I even wrote an entry on it earlier in the year.  It is confusing, especially if you're coming from previous editions where the rules for force organization were much more tight.  Now, we have detachments and formations and Imperial Knights and dataslates and factions.  It's enough to leave most of us either confused or frustrated.  7th edition is wide open in how you can build your armies, but there are some restrictions.  This is both good and bad.  Good in the sense that we have a lot of versatility in how we build our lists, but bad in the fact that how it is done can be confusing.
When building your list, keep in mind that you cannot have a Combined Arms Detachment with an Allied Detachment from the same faction.  The only exception to this are Space Marines who, per their FAQ, may take a CAD along with an Allied Detachment from Space Marines so long as that Allied Detachment have separate chapter tactics. So, you could take a White Scars CAD with an Allied Detachment of Ultramarines, because both of those armies use separate chapter tactics.
Chaos Space Marines (or Tau with Enclaves) don't get such a benefit, despite what you may read to the contrary.  A trick a lot of Chaos Space Marine players try to use is to take a CAD with Huron as the warlord to get the infiltrate warlord trait, and an Allied Detachment of Black Legion with Abbadon and terminators in a land raider.  The idea being to infiltrate Abaddon and his retinue using Huron's warlord trait. While a cool trick, it is, unfortunately not legal.  The reason being Chaos Space Marines and Black Legion are from the same faction, thus you couldn't bring an Allied Detachment of one with the other. You could bring two CADs with both armies, but Abaddon has to be the warlord negating the trick with Huron. 
Some will argue that in the Black Legion supplement it says something to the effect of "may ally with Chaos Space Marines as battle brothers."  While this is true, it still does not give permission to run an Allied Detachment with Chaos Space Marines.  Allying as battle brothers simply means you follow the battle brothers role in the allies matrix, and in fact, the sentence iteself is entirely moot due to the fact that the language was written for 6th edition, when the supplement was released.  In 7th edition, of course they can ally as battle brothers. They are from the same faction.  This same verbage appears in the Farsight Enclaves book as well, yet the same holds true.
The main problem here is that, despite this fact, tournament organizers all over the world are blatantly ignoring it or misinterpreting the rule.  Why would they ignore something like this?  Well, quite frankly, it is to ensure they get maximum participation for their events.  Tournament organizers are under a tremendous amount of pressure to make an event that caters to their potential players.  Tau in particular are a very popular tournament army, for obvious reasons.  And yes, in fact, in 6th edition they could run an Allied Detachment with Tau as a Primary, because the rules allowed them to do so.  This is no longer the case, however you have many players who have bought and painted armies for tournament play based on this fact and to suddenly change it, severely hurts the possible participation level at tournaments. If a potential tournament player sees an event that basically makes the list they've been working to build for over a year now illegal, they will not participate in that event.  At least not until they can get their armies ready for the current format.  So tournament organizers are put in a precarious position and many have overlooked this rule in favor of a higher volume of potential players (and customers) by simply allowing Tau and Farsight Enclaves to use a CAD and Allied Detachment together.
Another thing a lot of players fail to notice is that while say Chaos Space Marines and Black Legion cannot run as a CAD/Allied Detachment force, you are given permission to pick and choose characters, units, and wargear from all the codices and supplements related to your faction in the same list.  You could have, say a Chaos Lord from Chaos Space Marines and a Black Legion demon prince with the eternal warrior relic in the same detachment.  This would be perfectly legal.  Whichever of these HQs would be deemed the warlord, that army would then be the primary detachment per the rules in 7th edition.  Thus, if the demon prince in this example is deemed the warlord, then Black Legion is the primary detachment and the troop requirements and restrictions would be in place and vice versa for the Chaos Lord from Chaos Space Marines.  Tau and Enclaves can do the same (with certain restrictions of course).
When looking to build your lists, read over the rules for building your army in the rulebook carefully.  While tools such as Battlescribe are handy, they are oftentimes not setup to correctly create an army in 7th eidtion (although many of them do a good job and are great tools.)  Talk to your local tournament organizers as well, and try and get them on board with the actual rules in the rulebook for force building.  This isn't 6.5 edition, as many would like to believe. This is 7th edition and the rules have changed.  Even the most basic core rules on how forces are built.  That isn't simply a "small revision."  It is an entirely new way armies are built for Warhammer 40k.
Rules we Get Wrong: Allying Rules we Get Wrong: Allying Reviewed by Robert Chandler on 7:27:00 AM Rating: 5

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