No, usually not. One of the core rules of the Imperium is that forces need to be seperated: Astartes, Navy, Guard etc. No single force should be big enough to threaten the Imperium as during the Horus Heresy. Standard are a host of chapter serfs, who take over guard duties for the holdings of the chapter and are usually only fighting along their chapter when they are being attacked at home and otherwise remain in a more passive background support capacity when on campaign. *Terms & Conditions apply of course, for example like the Ultramarines who have their own mini-empire and with that come their own PDF / Auxilliary troops for the planets. But that has usually historical reasons and is not standard procedure. SYL


What’s SYL mean?


SeeYouLater, most likely.


They have serfs who do all the menial tasks, so the space marines can focus on battle. The serfs also defend the fortress monasteries and are trained enough in combat to at least a level similar to a guardsman. They very rarely go into battle with the space marines. The most they'll do is man a gun on a drop ship or something, so the marines don't have to.


The Ultramarines fight alongside theirs, though, and the Black Templars drag theirs along with them into combat. It makes sense. You don't necessarily want to wait for Imperial Guard to bulk up your assets, and one imagines the Space Marines know a thing or two about how to have up-to-standard auxiliary combat infantry, armor, artillery, and combat support troops organized to support their Chapter.


The ultramar auxilia is largely confined to operating within the realms of ultramar though, traditionally the Codex Astartes limited the degree to which warrior serfs may be deployed to engagements defending the ships and holdings of the chapter, the ultmar Auxilia gained a broader jurisdiction because the Ultramarines have come to once more control such a large swathe of territory with the refounding of the 500 worlds.


Right, but the Black Templars clearly give no fucks about all that, and they at least bring their doods with them.


True the black templars are one of the least codex compliant chapters in many regards, they're more likely to bring more warrior serfs with them on an offensive operation than most other chapters. But i can't recall reading any clear description of them looking to turn their serfs into something that can provide as much as the guard. Deploying them in the millions to hold the line along vast front lines, massed artillery and armour on the scale of the guard.


"Deploying in the millions" is beyond the capability of most guard formations we see, anyway, and certainly beyond the capacity of a single chapter of Space Marines. Efforts like you mention there typically require the cooperation of dozens of planets assembling dozens or hundreds of regiments of assorted types into combined arms task force configurations. Now, something smaller, more purpose-built, and modular, but still with some ass? It'd be entirely reasonable for a Chapter to be able to recruit, supply, train, and deploy to good effect something like a few USMC MEU/MEB/MEF-equivalents.


Yes and no. The serfs are used in a pinch if the marines are caught with their pants down (in some cases very literally like in Darkness in Blood) but most cases take up a support role to keep the Chapter functioning. It is a dedicated part of the Chapter, but at the same time not(?) as most cases the serfs aren't expected to tag along with the marines everywhere they go, and every chapter has a different policy on serfs. Hell even the ones with a dedicated portion trained for combat can't agree on how to use them. Space Wolves have the Kaerls which defend the home, the Helots of the Spears of the Emperor who are as much logistics and intelligence support as they are military support, the Blood Thralls who don't really fight unless the ship they serve on is in danger, and the Black Templars have their serfs fight alongside them which fits their status as "absolutely insane" because only a lunatic would send an unarmored fanatic with a bolt pistol into the same warzone that needs giant power armored behemoths to turn the tide.


I’m running a crusade force with chapter serfs (navy breachers) as not everyone can throw a billion marines at a problem far away. Iirc some chapters use auxiliary serfs for combat outside of just defense, but not usually in full scale direct combat all the time, like the ultramarines.


>not everyone can throw a billion marines at a problem far away Yeah that's what the Guard is for. >Iirc some chapters use auxiliary serfs for combat outside of just defense Yeah the Black Templars > but not usually in full scale direct combat all the time, like the ultramarines. I think you're referring to the Ultramar Auxilia which is less of a force of serfs and more of a PDF but...you know...competent.


I belive this is prohibited by the Codex Astartes, however chapters do have chapter serfs, who are aspirants who have failed somewhere along the way to becoming Astartes who sometimes take on combat roles as pilots, vehicle crew etc. Having a standing army of them would bring a lot of negative attention from the rest of the Imperium though. The Emperors Spears novel features serfs pretty heavily. The renegade Astral Claws had raised a human army in their rebellion. The Imperium didn't take too kindly to that and counted that amongst their many heresies.


Not all of them are aspirants. The Emperor's Spears' QRF force (some security team) was a guy who was descended from Serfs and heavily upgraded, the other was a lady, who I think in both cases we can assume never applied to become Astartes. On Fenris in "Blood of Asaheim" the Serfs are basically the pilots, infrastructure workers, engineers, cooks, security units, etc. Basically, if it isn't Astartes work, a Serf is doing it. It goes in depth about how the ships are crewed by Serfs.


>The Emperor's Spears' QRF force (some security team) was a guy who was descended from Serfs Ah yeah thinking about it you are correct, that somehow slipped my mind!


They can have certain mortal support but generally they're not supposed to have troops of their own to keep them somewhat separate from the Imperial power structure at large. High Lords are still touchy about that whole Horus Heresy business.


Traitor legions: SEND OUT THE SLAVES. Most of the slaves being feral chaos corrupted freaks.


Almost never. Besides the rules mentioned earlier, most Astartes combat is not fit for regular humans. They'd get slaughtered.


Yes, chapters field regiments of guard, armed serfs or other auxilary forces of their own. Ultramarines ___ > Quintus marched the length of the city walls with Nkiru at his side. His Quaestor jogged to keep up with him, dodging in between the hurried preparations that had turned Axum from an industrious agricultural centre of trade into a defensive bulwark. Thousands of men and women manned the walls, each clad in the blue uniformjackets marked with the three bound corn sheaves heraldry of Tarentus. > > There was no panic, for these were citizens of Ultramar. Though only a hundred were Ultramarines, the Chapter serfs, helots and Defence Auxilia were men and women who trained every day to be worthy of Roboute Guilliman’s legacy. > > Such was the norm on worlds governed by the Ultramarines. > > ___ > > > While each world of Ultramar enjoys the protection of the Ultramarines Chapter, the Ultramar Auxilia functions as the first line of defence against any invaders. The Ultramar Auxilia is trained with extreme discipline and dedication, reaching to standards expected from Space Marines, as such they are considered much more competent than the average PDF. While Ultramar is exempt of the normal tithes of manpower expected of the worlds in the Imperium, the Ultramar Auxilia maintain many regiments ready for deployment to locations outside of Ultramar. Indeed, several of these regiments have fought against the enemies of the Imperium alongside the Ultramarines. > > ____ > > Most worlds in the Imperium are obliged to provide regiments for the Imperial Guard when required, but Space Marine homeworlds are an exception. In the case of Ultramar however, they mantain several hundred regiments. As a result regiments have fought all over the galaxy, often in campaigns alongside the Ultramarines themselves. ___ Black Templars ___ > I enter my pod. As the ramps rise one of our lay preachers shouts out our battlecry. 'No pitty! No remorse! No fear!' He, like all the serfs, is armed and armoured. The lowliest of them are capable warriors, such is our way. There is no room for weakness. Any who can bear arms are expected to do so. No matter their station. ___ White Consuls ___ > He had seen the fleet leave, its thrusters glowing whiteblue on the run towards the Mandeville points. No one had been in any doubt that the situation at Cadia was critical, and so the bare minimum guard remained in the Sabatine’s great monastery – eighty battle-brothers, thirty of whom had been accelerated from service in the Scouts and twelve who were still in recovery from near-terminal wounds in other battles. Three regiments of Sabatine Praetorians, totalling just under seven thousand troops, only a fifth of that sent with the fleet to Cadia. Auxiliary serfs, militia and standing urban defence forces, plus a token orbital presence. > > The Praetorian squads have been well trained and well equipped – he must remember to trust what has been done here over the centuries to make these people strong. ____ Blood Angels ___ > In Adanicio’s train were the leaders of the Chapter’s human servants from every division, scholiasts of the librarius, equerries to the Chapter councils, logisticiam adepts, the captain-ordinary of the blood thrall warriors, Master Leeter of the astropaths, and those navigators who could bear the gravity of Baal. A column of armed blood thralls twenty strong, their small human forms lost in ornate half-powered carapace suits, followed their masters in their storied battleplate and the relics in their train. > > ___ > > A mixed group of Blood Angels, Angels Numinous and Blood Drinkers ran with Dante. Drafted mortals and warrior blood thralls provided covering fire, their small human forms lost in ornate half-powered carapace suits.


technically the ultramarines are in charge of the ultramar auxilla, if that counts


Chapter Serfs. Do non-combat jobs and some limited security for their facilities. They are otherwise not allowed to have people under arms fighting alongside them like that. The reason the Marines were broken up into chapters, the Imperial military broken into the Navy and Guard (among other things) was a legal thing to prevent any single commander from having sufficient resources to mount their own large-scale rebellion. That is why Marines are no longer a combined-arms force like they once were.


Depends. Most dont in direct combat but usually have chapter-serfs atleast function as guards and garrisons for their ships/outposts. When the Iron Snakes deploy against a Ork-Waaaagh in *Brothers of the Snake*, they also bring their serfs with them but they dont directly battle, they just run back and forth between the Marines & supply-depots to make sure they have ammo and weapons. The successor-Chapter in *Of Honour and Iron* does use human serfs to directly bolster their garrison on the planet in that story, and they serve as everything from Grunt with Lasrifle to Snipers & Heavy-weapons teams. The big exception are the Ultramarines, who have a full-on Imperial Guard/Navy equivalent with the Ultramar Auxilia, altho they are only allowed to deploy within Ultramar.