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How many companies and in what format?

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#1
Xisor

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I was musing on this recently. Classically, the Salamanders have seven companies, right?

 

Well, they also have seven cities. And each company is associated to a city. But the Firedrakes live on Prometheus. And the Firedrakes are the household guard of the First Company Captain, who also does the Steward job in lieu of actual Vulkan the Primarch.

 

And now the new(ish) Codex: Space Marines says things along the line of 'the Scout company live out in the mountains', when describing the seven cities before 'graduating' to become a Battle Brother in a sanctuary city-company. So, what? Is one city not associated to company?

 

Well, actually, that'd be two 'empty of Salamanders' sanctuary cities, because, as mentioned, the Firedrakes live on the moon.

 

But if we stick with the seven cities idea, that surely means we've got seven companies. And no hint of 'progression' between cities, just Scouts graduate to cities, and, somehow by the long turn of the years, Battle Brothers become Firedrakes. We know the Salamanders companies are more populous than normal, and that the Scouts are fewer. So, that begs the supposition: do the Salamanders have nine actual companies?

 

A weird First/Command/Household Company of Firedrakes, seven 'large' Sanctuary Companies and a Scout Company? 

 

---

 

In any case, there's also a good question of the battle/reserve dichotomy between the non-Scout, non-Firedrake companies. Do any fulfil a reserve role? Or is the reserve company 'responsibility' usually rolled up into those extra squads that feature in the battle companies? 

 

Given the revelations in Horus Heresy: Massacre about the Salamanders' early days, I'd be quite happy with the thought that 'normal' operations see the Salamanders continue to revert to their nature despite the codex - a preference for isolation, smaller forces and 'biting off more than you can [well, should] chew'? That way the Salamanders could operate as seven 'battle companies', which are actually smaller than most battle companies in terms of raw, battle company-grade battle-brothers. Instead, they also have one or two squads of 'reserve' quality squads, and potentially also some squads who actually do a lot more heavy lifting than any normal squad should do - e.g. non-First Company 'veterans'. 

 

That certainly makes some sense, to me. It'd also be relatively appropriate if they nominally keep to the battle company format listed in the old Index Astartes (e.g. ostensibly 7 Tactical squads, 2 Assault squads and 3 Devastator squads). If that's replicated throughout the seven (or five) non-Scout, non-Firedrake companies, then there's plenty of scope for variation within how those actually manifest on the battlefield. Again, taking Massacre as a start, the division of 7/2/3 might be a bit of a a grading system - e.g. 30 Marines who can do 'no more' than Devastator/Scout/Vehicle/Centurion roles, 20 who can do Assault/Devastator/Scout/Vehicle/Centurion/Bike/Landspeeder and 70 who can do 'all of the above' as they need to. Then, day-to-day and battle-to-battle, the individual squads may very frequently retool and change 'outfit' much more often than most other chapters. 

 

 

Well, it's just a thought.

 

---

 

Tl;dr- Seven cities for seven companies, but the Scouts live in the mountains and the Firedrakes live on the moon... so nine companies?


Edited by Xisor, 03 August 2014 - 01:50 AM.


#2
SlickSamos

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I believe according to the most recent fluff, you are spot on.  Old school is that there are only 7 Companies total.  See here for the older structure http://wh40k.lexican...iki/Salamanders


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#3
Uprising

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I think now its breaks down into

1st company (120 vets from all 7 cities)

2-8(120 marines from one of seven city)

9th is the 60 scout company. 

 

The old fluff was only 7 companies. 


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#4
Gaius Atticus

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I think now its breaks down into
1st company (120 vets from all 7 cities)
2-8(120 marines from one of seven city)
9th is the 60 scout company.

The old fluff was only 7 companies.

That's how understand it. It still sort of follows the old fluff in that there are 7 battle companies plus scouts and veterans. Its just now they seem to be their own companies.

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#5
Xisor

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Digging up this old thing again (since finishing Forge Master, my interest in getting the Salamanders organisation 'ironed out' is aflame again).

 

So, I think we're agreed with the idea that they're now one company of Firedrakes, seven line companies and the old company of Scouts.

 

But what about the organisation within those companies? With Forge Master we still have the noting of Mulcebar's company as being a reserve company. I think FM slightly pre-dates the other stuff, but I'm not certain.

 

I understand, also, that Rebirth introduced a few more aspects of the Horus Heresy into modern 40k - I'm sure I saw Pyroclasts on the Dramatis Personae! Did it make any comment on this sort of thing - on the organisation of the actual companies themselves? I wonder if they're even more freeform - being more akin to Space Wolf Great Companies with no absolute quota divvying up their disposition?



#6
strongbow

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Digging up this old thing again (since finishing Forge Master, my interest in getting the Salamanders organisation 'ironed out' is aflame again).

 

So, I think we're agreed with the idea that they're now one company of Firedrakes, seven line companies and the old company of Scouts.

 

But what about the organisation within those companies? With Forge Master we still have the noting of Mulcebar's company as being a reserve company. I think FM slightly pre-dates the other stuff, but I'm not certain.

 

I understand, also, that Rebirth introduced a few more aspects of the Horus Heresy into modern 40k - I'm sure I saw Pyroclasts on the Dramatis Personae! Did it make any comment on this sort of thing - on the organisation of the actual companies themselves? I wonder if they're even more freeform - being more akin to Space Wolf Great Companies with no absolute quota divvying up their disposition?

 

I think that in Rebirth the company was introduced as a reserve company.

 

The mention of a Pyroclast was referred to as some kind of old relic title, as opposed to an official unit designation.

 

Given that in Rebirth the main company did not have any assauly squads (they had to borrow the one squad they had), it suggests that as of Rebirth there are Salamanders reserve companies that operate as described in 3rd edition.



#7
Xisor

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I understand from the previews of next week's Angels of Death Codex Supplement, we're back to 7 companies, of which the First is the Firedrakes (Terminators & Veterans), the Seventh are the Sons of Nocturne (Scouts) and all of them correspond to a city...

So the stuff released in the actual Codex is abandoned, by the sounds of it. (Unless two companies were destroyed entirely just before the 3rd War for Armageddon, and the Firedrakes had to move off of Prometheus for some reason...)

Of course. They might have just had someone write the entry who is atrocious at research. (Or was having a bad day...)

#8
SickSix

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Considering how lazy and awful their formation is, I would totally accept that whoever drew up the chapter graphics isn't a subject matter expert.

Edited by SickSix, 18 April 2016 - 05:28 PM.

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#9
Xisor

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Quite so!

In tangentially related news, don't you find 'SME' irritatingly redundant? All experts are experts on subject matters, so the 'sm' in 'sme'us unnecessary. 'Expert' covers things quite nicely...
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#10
Gothical

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It is interesting that they have moved to full Battle Companies for all 5 "true" companies.

 

I never liked the bit of background about how the 7 companies were tied to 7 sanctuary cities which they recruited from, it didn't work with the fact that there were only ever 7 companies, one of which is based on the moon Promethius and the other was the Scout company. It meant that either 2 companies were invented wholesale or that the Salamanders were radically different in their recruitment methods.

 

The new Chapter Organisation table shows that instead of the 5th and 6th being Reserve Companies, they are more akin to a normal Battle Company - though they lack Assault Squads, Bikes and Land Speeders which is a nice way of representing the relative rarity of anti-grav trained units amongst the Salamanders chapter in the context of all of the newer releases over the years (such as formations mandating Land Speeders etc.).

 

It is a bit of a shame that it doesn't list full figures for each company - it was a nice touch that there were 7 Tactical Squads and 3 Devastator Squads per company, highlighting the slight Codex Divergence of the Chapter, and only 70 Scouts showing the slow recruitment rate.


Edited by Interrogator-Chaplain Adam, 19 April 2016 - 10:01 AM.

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Nah, no one takes a ship like the XIIth. Imagine being stuck in a space-bound tin can with only short hallways to set up firing points. It'd be like releasing a pack of PCP'ed up wolverines (the animals, not multiple Hugh Jackmans) into a locker room and blocking all the exits.

 

They aren't stuck inside a ship with you, you're trapped on a ship with them. 

 

However, the First Son and his Templar Brethren are who I'd bet on to defend that ship happy.png

 


#11
Xisor

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Hmm, Kyme's "Rebirth" contains a comment that certainly sheds explicit light on all this:

"Most remained on Nocturne to help train the scout company and begin the inception of a Seventh Battle Company, an unprecedented undertaking since before the time of the Second Founding."

---

At least by Kyme's perspective, it's previously been Six Battle Companies + ancillaries. (Scouts + Firedrakes, notably.)

I'm strongly inclined to think this is the 'proper' formation, mainly because whatever preceded it doesn't make sense and unify things (without introducing new facts).

It makes the most sense at least: Firedrakes + Scouts + 7 12-Squad 7:3:2 Battle Companies.

Edited by Xisor, 17 September 2016 - 07:37 PM.


#12
strongbow

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That's confusing because obviously that precedes AoD by some way...

 

Given that new fluff always trumps old, whatever AoD says is probably the way forward. Unless at some point there are Circle of Fire sequels at any point in the future which provide further clarity.

 

My personal preference is that there are 7 mainline companies (battle/reserve) for each settlement, with scouts and veterans being separate. i don't get to choose though!


Edited by strongbow, 10 October 2016 - 06:25 AM.


#13
Xisor

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My personal preference is that there are 7 mainline companies (battle/reserve) for each settlement, with scouts and veterans being separate. i don't get to choose though!


This plays on my mind a lot. More than one would imagine!

I'm inclined to agree with you though. It's a sensible, egalitarian-enough system as it plays strongly to the independent themes a few of the First Founding share (albeit in different strokes) - the Raven Guard, Ultramarines, Iron Hands and Space Wolves being the most obvious, with top-tier successor the Black Templars also feeding into my thinking.

Being split this way (7* Battle Company) really offers up some interesting aspects.

Foremost, I'm inclined to think Crusader Squads make a lot of sense for Salamanders. I like (thematically, not morally!) the idea of the teenage child-soldiers being apprenticed in the midst of the superhumans. Held to a high standard.

In my mind it would mean that Salamanders Scout Squads would perhaps be better represented by Ratling Squads more than anything else (e.g. physically close to actual children).

Mainline Salamander Squads, with what would be "Devastator" Squads in most chapters (Reserve 9th Company?) being Crusader Squads. E.g. a mix of fully trained and not-quite ready.

With that vision, I'm musing on a 'tabletop chapter' that'd look a bit like:
- 120 Veterans (made up of Vets, terminators, possibly with Deathwatch style mechanics at play too [lone model Terminators!])
- 7* 6 Tactical Squads
- 7* 1 Crusader Squads (the "scout/reserve" part of each battle company, a dedicated training squad? Or perhaps all seven Tactical Squads also take this role, in some places? Either a single Crusader, or a pairing of 7 Tactical with up to ten Scouts/Neophytes split out variously?)
- 7* 3 Devastator Squads
- 7* 2 Assault Squads
- ~60 "Scouts" of the Scout Company + instructors, perhaps mainly composed of Ratlings and a host of odd support personal. (Honour Guard, DW-style

See what I mean?

They'd all have differing specialisations, possibly even ancestral assets that go hand in hand with the cities (the cities then providing crews/regiments for the Chapter auxiliaries/serfs - reinforcing the 'all in it together' aspect?).

#14
Claws and Effect

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7 companies that are DRAWN from the associated city.

It doesn't necessarily mean they live there.

#15
Checkmate

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7 companies that are DRAWN from the associated city.

It doesn't necessarily mean they live there.

I think the problem comes from what they wrote not coinciding with what they meant. 

What they meant, which is confirmed by the examples given in the art work, is 7 companies period, 5 line companies plus veterans and scouts.

What they wrote, and what makes far more sense from a deployment perspective, is 7 line companies, each guarding a settlement, plus veterans and scouts. They even describe vets living on Prometheus away from the settlements, and the scouts living out in the wastes.

 

I don't agree with the differing specialisation and crusader squads though. it's clear through the novels and small number of codex sources that the companies operate as codex companies are supposed to operate and scouts operate as they are supposed too. They don't deploy teenage soldiers any differently from other chapters, they ensure their scout are ready before they insert them into actual battles, maybe even more so than other chapters as they have less men to sacrifice.


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#16
Sho'Valla

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From recently scouring the wikis and from reading above I would lean towards - 7 companies for each city, scouts come from the wastelands, and veterans that have come from all 7 companies are located on the moon. This make most sense to me personally. 

 

A question to you lovely people moving forward from this; how on terra do the new primaris marines fit into this chapter structure? Is it a as new company, or as squads within existing companies?


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#17
Agatone

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From the forthcoming SM Codex, it appears the Primaris are additional units in the company:

 

med_gallery_100344_13521_41998.jpg

 

From the Warhammer Community

 

Warhammer TV’s own Duncan Rhodes painted a squad of Intercessors to add to his Salamanders army. As some Primaris Space Marines form new units added to existing companies, they can sometimes occupy squad numbers above 10. Duncan chose to make his squad the 13th squad, and came up with markings for their kneepads by cutting the numbers from a transfer sheet separately and putting them on the models side by side!

 

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Perhaps the Salamander Primaris were simply distributed throughout the chapter. Normal battlefield attrition will deplete the numbers eventually.


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#18
Lysimachus

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My word this is poorly done but in the new dex Sallies fluff pages it clearly says 7 Companies from the cities plus the Scout Company, but on Chapter Org layout two pages over it flat out contradicts itself and shows the 7th Co is the Scout Co (Master of Recruits, all Scouts)... who was proof reading that? :P
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#19
Agatone

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Found this from the 7e supplement Angels of Death. Is this the same chart being used in the new codex? If it is, I suppose no one wanted to redo the artwork. Shame.

 

gallery_100344_13542_1145481.png

 

A curious thought but one that I can't help consider: What if the Salamanders were hiding 'legion-size' numbers?

The Dark Angels and their successors 'act' like a legion when working together. 

The Black Templars background supports their legionary numbers.

Every chapter seems to have their little secret here and there.

 

With no 'official' successors, would it be statistically possible for there NOT to be more SALs? Reportedly they act en masse with all of their companies, like at Armageddon and during the Dragonstrife. Maybe there is a chapter on Nocturne and another chapter that is fleet based? Too crazy?

 

If there is another battle company, do you think the badge should be white with a green badge or orange with a white badge?


Edited by Agatone, 29 July 2017 - 01:09 PM.


#20
Agatone

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Alas, it is poor proofreading after all. 

 

The 6th company's badge changed from orange with green badge to orange with white badge with the turn of a page in the new codex. Shame, GW, shame.

 

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#21
Custodian Athiair

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If you ignore the (massive) problems with chapter structure and iconography, I am more than happy with the lore written for Salamanders. And has (excuse the pun) fanned the flames of my hobby interest, to go and update models with new icons, designs, and patterns.

The poor proof reading hurts a lot. I think in my head there is one company missing rather than one city without a company - hell debatable two cities with the Firedrakes being considered one of the 7 as well.

I like the fluff on the fight on the hive world Vs Deamons. I like the touch on Necrons trying to steal our artifacts. I like that each company has got an additional title too.

One thing I'd have like to see is actual company breakdown for size. It's very vague and hand wavey. Is it still the classic 120 per company (60 for scouts). Or are we now much more flexible and just have no set number to obey?
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Probably heretical due to the Plague Zombie problem springing up in the 41st Millenium.
"What in Terra's name are you doing?"
"Um...gathering tactical data."
"With a spork?"

 

The Leonic Heresy (alternate history): http://www.bolterand...-leonic-heresy/

Salamanders {8th}: W:24{5} D:8{0} L:10{0}


#22
Custodian Athiair

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As a thought, maybe someone should play as the "lost company". The one that takes residence in one of the cities but is expunged from all other official records apparently.


 

Probably heretical due to the Plague Zombie problem springing up in the 41st Millenium.
"What in Terra's name are you doing?"
"Um...gathering tactical data."
"With a spork?"

 

The Leonic Heresy (alternate history): http://www.bolterand...-leonic-heresy/

Salamanders {8th}: W:24{5} D:8{0} L:10{0}


#23
Agatone

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Following the color pattern, there could be several "shadow" chapters to protect Nocturne. SALs were the only legion to be excluded from being separated into chapters due to low numbers. In ten thousand years, no "official successors"? Statistically, there would have to be an opportunity for more marines. DA act as a "legion" when they're joined by their successors. BT are nearly a legion judging by their "Crusade Companies". Not to assert AL imagery of a serpent with many heads, but could the SALs be harboring a little secret of their own? Now with Primaris being poured into their ranks (and suspiciously no Primaris SAL successor chapters), their cup may be running over at the moment. Going by their imagery, there could be:
 
CO...Pad....Badge..Type
01..black...white..veteran
02..black...white..battle
03..black...orange.battle
04..black...green..battle
05..orange..black..battle
06..orange..green..battle
07..orange..white..battle
08..white...black..scout
09..white...orange.scout/reserve?
10..white...green..scout/reserve?
11..green...black..reserve?
12..green...orange.reserve?
13..green...white..reserve?
 
All speculation without a basis in any factual background of the SALs. I'm not sure if it would be fun to create some fluff with a founding chapter that can so easily be over-ruled by GW data. It is a fun mental exercise. Sadly, I now feel less inclined to dive into a Salamander army.


#24
Xisor

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Collaborating with the Primaris thread, I *think* I've got it on the "are they a legion?" Will they/won't they front.

That is: the precepts of Vulkan's outlook allow them to adhere to the breaking of the legions (if not the Codex itself in all its particulars), by being quite crafty on their "operating alone" front.

Salamanders like extended periods of independence. Assuming the Companies also split into their own forms of demi-companies at an operational level, and going with the "safe" (sensible, IMO) assumption that it's Seven Battle Companies, with Scouts in the wastes and Veterans on the moon, then the Salamanders have fourteen "demi companies" to work with, as well as capacity (and critically: inclination) to do a fairly huge number of smaller operations without bringing them below "four operational battle companies". Also they're happy to be outnumbered, so a general lack of reserves of their own might appeal rather than limit them.

My point is: the Salamanders pre-Vulkan were famously "suicidal"*. Nocturne and Prometheus have resources sufficient to *decently* outfit a Legion.

So?

Perhaps: The Salamanders assign forces to expeditions that are not expected to return. Stalling missions. Forlorn hopes.

When dispatched for *very* long-term duty, they're also written off and given remit to... keep going. "It's a suicide mission, but if you survive: keep fighting. If you still survive: make yourself useful. If you get back: you might have been replaced..."

And those that *do* make it back, after years/decades/centuries out of contact or beyond the reaches of civilisation...

They immediately get forwarded on to:
- be reorganised within the Chapter to make up for incidental losses
- Sent to Mars/Terra to assist in founding new Chapters
- Sent to the Deathwatch
- Sent to reinforce other Chapters on permanent secondment.

It should be a slow, tectonic process - not a constant flood (a large Imperial Fists and their manufacturing line of new recruits), but a willingness to embrace their own principles (and keep the unified Chapter that's under direct control of the Captain of Proemetheus well within Codex limits): dispatched out into the great beyond without hesitation. (And without administrative hassle.)

Does that make sense?
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#25
Aothaine

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Some good ideas here. I personally think that the Salamanders do not have successors because they were never really broken up as a legion. So they are technically the only Legion left. I think all the primaris were just split up between the seven companies as Guilliman seems to think splitting the legions up was a mistake now. He has pretty much returned other chapters back to legion status in a way and I feel he doesn't really need to go about it in a roundabout way with Salamanders because they are still a legion.


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