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Astra Militarium

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Now this could be complete nonsense, but Bell of Lost Souls are reporting that the Imperial Guard are to be relabelled the "Astra Militarium" in the new IG Codex. The less charitable among the commentators suggest that this would allow GW to trademark the new title; "Imperial Guard" is a title that's too generic to be copyrighted, apparently.

Any thoughts? Like it? Hate it? Personally I'm ambivalent. Many Imperial institutions have a high gothic and low gothic title, so I guess it makes sense. The "Astra" part of the term makes me wonder if it's intended to cover both the Imperial Guard and the Imperial Navy; perhaps a generic term for the forces under the control of the Munitorum?

Anyway, what do you think?

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from a trademark standpoint the comment is absolutly right

also imperial guard was never really fitting since the imperial navy flyers are included

still not happy about the namechange... why not just name it Departmento Munitorum, that is at least already established and includes everything you can actually field in a TT army

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The Adeptus Astra Militarium has a nice high gothic ring to it.

 

I think if they go with that route, we'd see:

 

Astra Militarium = Imperial Guard

Navis Militarium = Imperial Navy

 

Both under the  nominal logistics, operations and deployment via the Departmento Munitorum of the Adeptus Administratum. 

 

Deliciously 40k in my opinion. I don't doubt it might be motivated for trademarking, but ultimately it'll add some flavor text and make the organizational charts look just a bit cooler. 

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from a trademark standpoint the comment is absolutly right

also imperial guard was never really fitting since the imperial navy flyers are included

still not happy about the namechange... why not just name it Departmento Munitorum, that is at least already established and includes everything you can actually field in a TT army

 

The Departmento is a division of the Administratum. We could just do Administratum for the TT army for the same effect. Giving a name to the main components that fall under the Departmento Munitorum isn't a bad thing - and I doubt they'd drop the 'Imperial Guard' label from the codex either. We do have the Adeptus Astartes, after all, who have a Codex: Space Marines, for example.

 

The flavor text is a go imo.

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Stupid!

 

If it was Adeptus Militarium then I would be fine with that.

 

Astra Militarium sounds like a rubbish childrens breakfast cereal:

 

"Nothing gets you marching to the sound of Imperium monotony like Astra Militarium every morning. Now with corpse ration topping and a sprinkle of fairy dust."

 

:angry:

 

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That video. lol

 

With the renaming, I'm assuming it's full text would be the Adeptus Astra Militarium. Similar to the Adeptus Astra Telepathica. 

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Considering the many more things I think of when someone says "Space Marine" (okay, I don't, but you might be a Halo fan, or into any other XBox shooter), they aren't copyrighting that, either, thus I see no reason for the name change. Arguments involving the one or two Navy elements (Valks and MoF) are silly; they are there because everyone else has Flyers, and IG outsells many of those others, so they shouldn't be left out, or need a second book no one else does. Changing fluff doesn't often tick me off; I don't care if the Sisters of Battle take their marching orders from the Ecclesiarchy, the Ordo Hereticus, both some days, or a cute magical unicorn that is the Emperor's only company, while he battles the Ruinous Powers in the warp. Changing the official name? That's unnecessary and lame. No other source in 30 years has called them something else, and "Imperial Guard" only makes me think 40K IG and the Emperor's red-robed awesomes in Return of the Jedi (RotS got it wrong). If Star Wars isn't going to use them again, and they probably aren't, then leave it alone, or come up with a better reason, because it's been fine since the 70's.

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Space Marine actually is copyrighted by Games Workshop, and has been the source of contention between the company and others who have used the term before (Such as Director James Cameron in relation with Aliens, who was forced to change the marines into Colonial Marines). 

 

Knowledge is Power! Guard it Well!

 

Edit: This is more along the lines of development, rather than a change for changes sake. They won't suddenly stop being Imperial Guard. They just will also have the high title of Astra Militarium as well. 

Edited by Cogniczar

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If it was Adeptus Militarium then I would be fine with that.

 

I agree. "Astra Militarium" doesn't 'read' like a High Gothic translation of "Imperial Guard"...

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Would the Imperial Guard have Adeptus status, though? It's a subordinate branch of the Adeptus Terra, like the Officio Assasinorum... It's run by the Departmento Munitorum, which doesn't even have Adeptus status in its own right.

OK, the definition of "Adeptus" is a little vague....The Lexicanum article on the term is pretty worthless, stating that "Adept" is a title given to all servants of the Emperor. Really? So press ganged beastmen can call themselves Adepts, then? What about Penal legionnaires? Ogryns? Mutants working for radical inquisitors?

My reading has always been that "Adept" is a title given to certain ranks of Imperial servant in certain organisations. The closest analogy would be "party members" in a communist state; key state servants, typically on the political and civil side of things, though some elite military formations would also have this status.

I reckon the Imperial Guard isn't an Adeptus. My gut feel is that (IF this rumour about the name change is correct) is that "Astra Militarum" is a generic High Gothic term for "Armed forces".

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My own thoughts on the subject are that I don't really mind the Imperial Guard getting a High Gothic byname - in fact, it would only be consistent with several other Imperial organisations in 40k, so one might even say "it's about time".

To me, it will always be the Imperial Guard, though.

 

That being said ... meh, rumours. I do not believe for a second that GW would be so silly as to actually change the name of the Codex, throwing away ~30 years of recognition value. It is certainly true that Games Workshop has in the past displayed a certain weirdness in regards to business decisions, but even I don't think that they would go this far. If there is anything to all of this at all, my scrip is on nothing more than a short mention of this newly-minted byname somewhere in the book's fluff section.

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I'd like to go the other direction and say that Imperial Guard was always a silly name IMO.

Imperial Guard suggests the elite of an army, not the massed ranks of line troops which is what the WH40k version is.

The original designation 'Imperial Army' made much more sense. I suppose GW considered them to be a kind of PDF (e.g. national guard) which could be deployed anywhere by the empire and thus added Imperial to Guard and came up with 'Imperial Guard'. But all true grognards were spinning in their graves...or beds....

Edited by ranoncles

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The imperial Army was the complete body of military beside the Astartes Legions.

That included regular air and ground forces, space vessels and garrison troops.

Because of the Horus Heresy all these forces were split to prevent single individuals from having to much power. That is also the reason why we see heavy specialised regiments for each one of them would pose little threat if it went renegade because they would not have the bonus of combined arms and could be easily countered alone.

 

When the imperial army broke up we recieved the Imperial Navy and Guard AND PDFs. And infact you are right when you say that Guardsmen are the Elite because they also are in WH40k. Former the Army was made up everyone, that included the PDFs. But when they got seperated the PDFs were formed and so was the guard. But the Tithe also included that these Guardsman have to be the best of every planet and hence the name Guard is justified.

 

Just because the imperial Guardsman looks like a regular soldier you must not forget that they are still a minority of imperial soldiers. There are vast more PDFs. The regular IG Guardsmen Skill would be compared to Army Rangers/Airbourne and not regular "grunts".

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Considering the many more things I think of when someone says "Space Marine" (okay, I don't, but you might be a Halo fan, or into any other XBox shooter), they aren't copyrighting that, either, thus I see no reason for the name change. Arguments involving the one or two Navy elements (Valks and MoF) are silly; they are there because everyone else has Flyers, and IG outsells many of those others, so they shouldn't be left out, or need a second book no one else does. Changing fluff doesn't often tick me off; I don't care if the Sisters of Battle take their marching orders from the Ecclesiarchy, the Ordo Hereticus, both some days, or a cute magical unicorn that is the Emperor's only company, while he battles the Ruinous Powers in the warp. Changing the official name? That's unnecessary and lame. No other source in 30 years has called them something else, and "Imperial Guard" only makes me think 40K IG and the Emperor's red-robed awesomes in Return of the Jedi (RotS got it wrong). If Star Wars isn't going to use them again, and they probably aren't, then leave it alone, or come up with a better reason, because it's been fine since the 70's.

Halo doesn't have space marines, they have spartans, orbital drop troops and marines.

I'm fine with the namechange. I think most of the fuss is people being attached to the Imperial Guard and seeing that change isn't all that pleasant. It sounds fine to me that they change it.

 

Edit: Really Fieser? There are fluff stories of people rounding up criminals and other unwanted people in society and tithing them to the guard. Feudal regiments being sent into combat with plate armour and medieval weapons. Cadians, by training, and catachans, by living, are probably more badass then anything we have. But the "regular" guardsman seems more akin to WW1 soldiers. Hastily raised, trained and used in massive numbers to secure victory

Edited by Ghaundan
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And the fluff would be.

"Due to some hilarious warp phenomena the astropathic message with the official name-change arrived roughly ten millennia to late. The Imperial Guard is now serious business and shall bear the name Astra Militarium - bringing the fancy of pseudo-Latin to your nearest battlefield."

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My 2 cents: Changing the name of the imperial guard, and especially to something as cringeworthy as the astra militarium is pretty much the dumbest thing ever and no amount of mental gymnastics will make me change my mind.

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I reckon the Imperial Guard isn't an Adeptus. My gut feel is that (IF this rumour about the name change is correct) is that "Astra Militarum" is a generic High Gothic term for "Armed forces".

 

From my understanding of it, Adept is a title given to any member of the many branches of the Adeptus Terra. We most often associate the term Adept or Adepta to learned individuals or like-wise (in)famous and prestigious individuals within the organizations. 

 

A literal inferal would mean that every conscript, every initiate to the administratum would be considered an Adept or Adepta. A more realistic reading of it would suggest the honorific is reserved for ranking members of the children organiztions of the Adeptus Terra. Commanders of the Imperial Guard, Ranking Tech-Priests of the Martian Cult, Savants of the Administratum etc. 

 

 

 

Considering the many more things I think of when someone says "Space Marine" (okay, I don't, but you might be a Halo fan, or into any other XBox shooter), they aren't copyrighting that, either, thus I see no reason for the name change. Arguments involving the one or two Navy elements (Valks and MoF) are silly; they are there because everyone else has Flyers, and IG outsells many of those others, so they shouldn't be left out, or need a second book no one else does. Changing fluff doesn't often tick me off; I don't care if the Sisters of Battle take their marching orders from the Ecclesiarchy, the Ordo Hereticus, both some days, or a cute magical unicorn that is the Emperor's only company, while he battles the Ruinous Powers in the warp. Changing the official name? That's unnecessary and lame. No other source in 30 years has called them something else, and "Imperial Guard" only makes me think 40K IG and the Emperor's red-robed awesomes in Return of the Jedi (RotS got it wrong). If Star Wars isn't going to use them again, and they probably aren't, then leave it alone, or come up with a better reason, because it's been fine since the 70's.

Halo doesn't have space marines, they have spartans, orbital drop troops and marines.

I'm fine with the namechange. I think most of the fuss is people being attached to the Imperial Guard and seeing that change isn't all that pleasant. It sounds fine to me that they change it.

 

Edit: Really Fieser? There are fluff stories of people rounding up criminals and other unwanted people in society and tithing them to the guard. Feudal regiments being sent into combat with plate armour and medieval weapons. Cadians, by training, and catachans, by living, are probably more badass then anything we have. But the "regular" guardsman seems more akin to WW1 soldiers. Hastily raised, trained and used in massive numbers to secure victory

 

 

This is true. It is also true that the Imperial Guard are serviced and supplied by the Departmento Munitorum with standardized and most often superior wargear that are available to the localized planetary defense forces. The generations of experience, the combat theaters and co-ordinated warfronts between massively different regiments raised on millions of worlds makes the Imperial Guard a much more elite organization than each of it's lesser components. 

 

The fallacy in considering the Imperial Guard a 'grunt force' by analyzing it's lesser components is directly dismissing it's strengths; The Imperial Guard has at it's access whole regiments dedicated and specialized towards a distinct type of warfare, and can match any battlezone by matching appropriate combat forces. The horror stories we do hear about the Imperial Guard are due to bureaucratical error on the Departmento Munitorum's part (and by extension, the Administratum). Considering the galactic scale of warfare, this may or may not be justified by personal point of view and per warzone. 

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Edit: Really Fieser? There are fluff stories of people rounding up criminals and other unwanted people in society and tithing them to the guard. Feudal regiments being sent into combat with plate armour and medieval weapons. Cadians, by training, and catachans, by living, are probably more badass then anything we have. But the "regular" guardsman seems more akin to WW1 soldiers. Hastily raised, trained and used in massive numbers to secure victory

 

 

We all are in danger to take fluff stories as the "how it actually is" material, I do that mistake sometimes too. But we simply have the case here that it is quite boring to read a story that starts like this: "The Departmento Munitorum did its job quite well, like most of the time or this imperium would be destroyed some millenia ago. Several highly trained Guard Regiments were dispatched and actually received the right standard-pattern magazine for their Rifles. After deployment the specialized formations were each used in their specific field of expertize and supported each other. After a year and several thousand KIA Guardsmen the revolt was brought to a peaceful end."

 

The military story's from the PoV of regular soldiers were always about the incompetence of their superiors, that is a regular narrative but just as it stands in real life it is not the actual truth. It just makes up a good story. I guess you do not really believe that the entire IG is made of inbreed noble officers without any common sense and skill that get their logistics managed by some hunchbacks that just troll other people for the shizzles.

 

Also it is true, there are some hastily raised troops that make a bad performance on the field and are most likely cannon fodder. But you have to differentiate. These troops are always raised because of demand on a specific theater of war. They are not part of the regular tithe and serve in campaigns that affect the entire sector or some very important world. They can be raised by imperial law in times of need alongside the regular Tithe troops that got their proper training and drill. Sometime their only job is to hold some ground until other forces can deploy. This is what makes fortress worlds that important because you can hastily raise hundreds of regiments even with the proper training.

 

And if you mention those feudal regiments. Do not underestimate them. On most of these worlds there is some kind of warrior-caste that spends it entire life dedicated to war and martial prowess. Commonly there is some kind of ritual fight (jousting/duelling/whatever) where the best of their warriors are chosen. And guess what. Those are the guys that will later get recruited. A prime example would be the famous Attilan Rough Riders.

 

TL; DR

The Guard is overall a pretty elite military force with its fair share of some fancy grimdark story's.

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In my opinion, though that is based on what I've read in GW's own material only, you are both kind of right. :D

 

There are PDF units that are more experienced and better trained than many Guard regiments. By itself, the IG denomination means nothing more than a couple weeks of training aboard a Navy transport and getting tossed a lasgun. Anything beyond this is a bonus, as Guard regiments can be conscripted from unskilled farmhands or even criminals, all depending on the local governor's policies.

 

On the other hand, there may be a whole lot of worlds in the Imperium where even just having that lasgun would be considered a notable improvement over the local defenders' armouries, and a rather vague Imperial decree concerning the recruits' minimum quality means that most governors would be at least somewhat interested in not letting standards slip too far when it comes to selecting portions of their local forces for tithing. Many worlds also consider service in the Guard a great honour, and a lot of members of the planetary nobility end up as officers in their world's armed forces, of which selection into the IG would confer even greater status for the family name (and though nobles may sometimes make bad leaders specifically because of their upbringing and preference of blood over performance, it's safe to say that these issues would persist in the PDF as well)

 

Lastly, however, the Imperial Guard also profits from its extensive networking, able to summon specialist forces and massive numbers of standardised vehicles, including weapons that are more advanced and terrifying than anything available to planetary forces.

 

As such, I would say that perhaps the difference between the average PDF trooper and the average Guardsman is not very big, or at the very least that it would be unfair to say that a Guardsman is always better than PDF - but the Imperial Guard by itself has many other advantages over local forces which would surely end up affecting the outcome of a campaign.

Edited by Lynata
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Lynata, I'd like to make a following point building on your post.

 

There are entire planetary defenses forces considered equal or superior to their tithed regiment equivilents. A prime example is are the Armeggeddon Steel Legion. The PDF of their world has been in a near-constant state of warfare with the Orks, forces of chaos, etc. On many accounts, their PDF would be far more experienced and combat ready than their tithed regiments off world.

 

I'd like to equate the status of the Imperial Guard and PDF much like the United States Active Duty Army and Reserve Army/National Guard units. Both serve the same functions in war time, and both can distinguish themselves above the other on individual levels. However, the AD Army is superior due to higher quality and constant training, active engagements in warzones, stronger logistical support and much higher numbers.

 

Similarly, the Imperial Guard draw from that framework. They might not always have better training (as that's relegated loosely), but will have a much higher ratio of veterans from active campaigns as opposed to the PDF who may go generations without a single encounter worthy to be labelled as such. They will have stronger draws for logistics in most cases (some worlds will treat their PDF with much higher affordance). They have vastly superior numbers compared to a single world's PDF, and unlike the PDF, will have Aerial and Space support from the Imperial Navy. In all respects, the Imperial Guard are the 'elite' of the Imperiums main military forces outside of the greater Naval combats.

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I both agree and disagree, but I have a feeling we're almost on the same page anyways!

 

To me, it all depends on the planet in question. The Steel Legions you mentioned are a perfect example of PDF rivaling (or even outclassing) many IG regiments, especially the ones raised from some random farmhands without any prior military training whatsoever, or the feral and feudal world units who are used to fighting with bows and spears.

 

Likewise, the Imperial Guard's numerical superiority depends entirely on the Navy to actually transport all those troops to the warzone, which is only further complicated due to the Warp and how it messes with travel times... that being said, I am still a fan of the 2E Codex description regarding the Guard's average response time.

 

In terms of logistics, here we can again see some great differences depending on the homeworld. On some planets, the PDF may (depending on personal interpretation!) be supplied in a modern manner with actual supply trains and a steady flow of consumables, whereas IG regiments are very much "stand-alone" and cut off from their homeworld, having to make due with whatever the Munitorum drops off at their warzone (good luck with that, see the Warp comment above) or what they may find on site. The absence of a steady supply flow lets me equate the Imperial Guard regiments to the armies of the Napoleonic Wars, where regiments are expected to supply themselves and have nothing in terms of logistics aside from a baggage train staffed by noncoms (including the soldiers' own sons and daughters fathered during their service).

On the other hand, of course on many worlds the PDF may be just the local clan of viking warriors or feudal knights, and it's save to say they do not have anything like modern logistics either... ;)

 

Depending on the planet in question, the PDF may also have access to their own aerial assets and system ships (see Elysian Drop Troops), and unlike with the link between the Imperial Guard and the Imperial Navy may in some cases even benefit from direct access rather than having to rely on a different organisation responding to their calls for aid.

 

As for how much experience a PDF actually has ... that may be hard to say. The current IG Codex contains a fluff blurb about Planetary Defence Forces addressing many of the claims you sometimes here in the fandom - as if the authors of that book are quite aware of the bad rep the PDF has amongst a lot of customers - and one of the interesting points it raised was that no Imperial world should be considered safe and that raids from pirates or hostile aliens occur all the time, even outside major engagements, making many PDF units quite experienced in warfare.

 

And that is before we consider internecine rivalries such as local feuds condoned by the Imperial governor, but resolved with the blood and sweat of all those forces that would be classified as PDF in case of an invasion. Given that the Necromundan IG regiments are recruited out of the local gangs, I wonder if these gangs are officially counted as PDF, too, perhaps as part of some agreement with the government?

 

On the other hand, the term "Imperial Guard" also includes those hastily raised regiments whose troops know little more than which end of the lasgun is to be pointed at the enemy... They may not survive first contact with the enemy, but that's just as much "the Imperial Guard" for you as the Cadians are.

 

tl;dr: it depends where we look! :D

Edited by Lynata
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Lynata, it's sort of scary how often I agree with you, and this time is no different. The only divergenece I really have is that in my view, the IG are more elite due to the scope of their responsibilties. It's an inherent thing. PDFs protect planets, the Imperial Guard protect the Imperium. That alone justifies them as the elite of the military. 

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That's also why I never had a problem with the name "Imperial Guard"!  ^_^

 

[edit] Found some cool fluff here:

http://www.games-workshop.com/MEDIA_CustomProductCatalog/m1320001_EPIC_updated_rulebook-sections_5_Oct09.pdf

 

Largely reinforces my opinion (also about Space Marines depending on IG support, see the thread on Planetary Engagements), but it also seems to contain a ton of rather interesting details regarding regimental organisation and recruitment ... hmmm, looks like I'll have to take some time digesting all of this. Feel free to join me. :)

Edited by Lynata
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I think it's a stupid change of name and hope it gets no further than the state of a wild rumour.

 

it was always Imperial Guard

It is Imperial Guard

It will be Imperial Guard

 

If they do change the name GW are really taking a turn for the stupid by giving the IG some silly High Gothic name no one asked for and no one wants.

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