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-   -   The combat familiar (https://www.heresy-online.net/forums/40k-rules-discussion/139353-combat-familiar.html)

koolkruse 01-29-14 10:01 AM

The combat familiar
Hey guys, I've been lurking for a while but I wanted to post this and see what everybody thinks. this is going to be a pretty big post pulling rules from multiple sections and with me trying to make clear, but well thought out arguments for everyone to follow along with.

Without further ado, let's start with the text on the combat familiar. " A model with a combat familiar makes two additional str 4, ap- attacks. YADA YADA YADA on how to place it". Pretty clean cut, right? it's horrible. I thought so too, for a long time, until one day when I was furiously flipping through the close combat and weapons sections of the rulebook.

See, I was trying to find a way for my dp with the black mace to use a normal CCW on the turn he charges, swap to the mace on my opponents, sweep them on that turn, and hop scotch through the enemy army. I can almost do it, but he doesn't have a ccw to swap to. Models only get one for free if they don't have a melee weapon. :angry:

However, in this expansive process I found a great can of cheese whiz that my FLGS allows me to use, and that I want to share and talk with you all about today, regarding the combat familiar. The BRB says that in the close combat section, when it comes for a models turn to strike blows, they MAKE attacks, which roll to wound using their own strength, but may be modified by the weapon they are wielding. In addition, the "more then one weapon" section in weapons out of the BRB describes that models with more then one melee weapon must pick one weapon, and use it for all of their attacks. They can't mix and match weapons, not use it for some, whatever. They have to go all in with it.

And now, the cheese unveiling. Combat Familiars are basically +2 attacks on most of our models. The combat familiar text says that the model with the familiar makes these extra attacks. And unlike hammer of wrath, or vector strike, or magma cutters, or terror from the deeps (I hate mawlocs), or any other rule that gives free hits, it doesn't tell you how to resolve it. On top, they aren't hits. They're attacks. And, it uses the same wording that the basic rulebook uses for models in cc (make attacks). Grounding the arguement with models with multiple melee weapons (I couldn't find a section that said models with one melee weapon have to use the weapon. It seems it's inferred, so let's not go there for now, and keep things rules grounded), they have to pick a weapon and modify all of their attacks with it.

So we've got huron, swinging with his tyrant's claw. he makes 3 str 4 attacks that move up to strength 6, ap3, shred armorbane whatever. The two attacks the familiar grants have to be modified the same way. The rules say so; it's actually illegal to not modify them that way.

What do you all think?

(Note: if your answer is "it's not rules as intended, they intended for it to be str 4 and ap -", my answer to you is maybe that phil kelley intended for there to be a way for chaos lords and the like to get two more attacks, but couldn't find a good price because demon princes can get them too. So he wrote an upgrade at a flat price, and worded it so that a model like a chaos lord makes two attacks at his printed strength which then get modified like his base attacks, and made sure the wording matched the basic rulebook so they could function like a printed +2 attacks, but it's also worded ingeniously so that demon princes don't get the same free +2, so you can't smash and still get 5 attacks all the time, or 7 at str 6. Either is just as plausible, and mine actually suggests that the writer knows what they are doing. Because arguing that the writers don't know what they are doing and you do is silly, and only viable in cases of game breakdown, let's keep this to rules as written)

neferhet 01-29-14 10:08 AM

god...you might be right. but even so, that is a big scumbag move with a topping of cheddar cheese over a cheesecake...

EDIT: ok, checked the fact. I'd say that the wording "additional attacks" means that those attacks are not from a weapon, they are just "additional", after all other stat modification, and they are resolver at fixed str and ap. It's not a weapon. It's like an ability? i think?

koolkruse 01-29-14 10:15 AM


But no, really. It's a game with taudar. This isn't the end of the world.

Edited edit: it pays to read I guess, thought you agreed. Attacks being additional is also covered under the BRB in the cc section. The combat familiar, in this scenario, ends up getting placed in extra bonuses. There's nothing that suggests this stats on these attacks are fixed (you aren't told to resolve them). There isn't actually anything to suggest they don't benefit from weapons, other then a straight read. And I think straight reads are what chaos players have been doing for way too long.

Uveron 01-29-14 10:17 AM


Originally Posted by neferhet (Post 1539689)
god...you might be right. but even so, that is a big scumbag move with a topping of cheddar cheese over a cheesecake...

Thats slightly crazy... but i kinda follow the logic. The only issue becomes if you were to propose that they are a separate model.

koolkruse 01-29-14 10:20 AM

It's fine if they're a separate model. hell, let's be crazy and model the chaos lord with those female slaves you can buy off gw from the dark eldar bits. He has like 4 women for his combat familiar (so he's clearly slaaneshi. moving on...............)

It doesn't change the wording that it's not the familiar that swings. It's the dude that buys it. The familiar is an extra model because......... honestly I have no idea. It looks cool.

Nordicus 01-29-14 10:33 AM

Wauw, I never thought of this - Awesome find!

koolkruse 01-29-14 10:43 AM

I agree. My usual lists run Huron and a dp with 3 mastery levels, tzeentch, the black mace, and a familiar. 7 +d6, 8 on charge (sure, two are strength 4.... they all have ap 2 fleshbane, whatever) attacks will erase anything I want, and biomancy and re rolling saves give me great staying power. Huron has incredibly flexibility, and an amazing printed warlord trait. I love it.

Gret79 01-29-14 10:52 AM

Its pretty much the same argument as 'does the DP get to use a cc familiar at ap2 because smash makes all a monstrous creatures attacks ap2?'

My answer is the old mantra of we need an faq. I won't be doing this till it's clarified. I don't see the problem with it myself, but my opponents may argue and I'd rather have a fun game than argue over rules :)

(I agree with you :secret:)

Dies Irae 01-29-14 11:17 AM

That's an interesting loophole. Indeed, the book says that we make two additional attacks. If we apply the model's WS and I to them, why not it's special rules and wargear?

Funny enough, the Tyranid Codex give MC's something similar with Tail weapons, but it is clearly stated is this case that those do not benefit from special rules such as Smash or Furious Charge

Vaz 01-29-14 12:34 PM

Combat familiars are not "basically +2 attacks", they are 2 S4 AP- attacks. That's their weapon profile.

The weapon profile of the lord does not affect a Combat Familiar.

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