Astra Militarum Tactics

Yarrick’s 40K Formation, The Young Commissar Yarrick

Approximate Reading Time: 7 minutes
Yarrick: Imperial Creed

Yarrick: Imperial Creed

I’ve recently read my first 40K book, Yarrick: Imperial Creed by David Annandale. I’ve a long way to go in terms of 40K reading and this was a great start for me.

The book had a good mixture of action, story and plot twists set across the murky political landscape of Mistral Рa planet taken over by heresy, or is it? We see Yarrick battle his way through heretics and corrupt officials to discover the truth on Mistral.

I’ve created a formation based on the main Imperial Guard characters and troopers in the novel. This is purely for fun and perhaps one day I’ll kit bash these models for real! I’ve included only the Imperial Guard characters and missed out Inquisition and Sisters of Battle characters – otherwise it gets too massive and over powered to be viable in a game.

One aspect that becomes apparent in the book about the Imperial Guard is that they can be their own worst enemy. The situations they find themselves are horrid but their strategy of throwing men and force at a problem is not always the best approach. I’ve tried to build this into the formation by weaving in slightly negative special rules to emulate how the Guard’s methods and red tape works against them.

The formation would consist of;

  • Yarrick
  • Sergeant Saultern
  • Rasp
  • Betzner
  • An infantry platoon

The infantry platoon should be made up as follows;

  • 5 infantry squads, including a vox caster in 2 of the squads, a missile launcher heavy weapons team¬†in all 5 squads (frag and krak missiles).
  • Everyone else has their default equipment.
  • Replace vox casters and missile launcher models as normal.
  • Replace one sergeant with a model for Sergeant Saultern.
  • Designate one missile squad as Betzner’s team, you don’t need to determine which of the team’s models is Betzner. The whole team of two is “Betzner”.
  • All squads and characters are¬†combined into one single “blob”.

Formation points cost: 475


The novel takes place during Yarrick’s younger years when he is a commissar, yet to fight on Armageddon against the Orks. He is under the tuition of Lord Commissar Rasp a battle hardened veteran, as is Seroff, Yarrick’s friend. Yarrick’s abilities are clear in this tale and show him as rising star among his fellow officers. His love for the Emperor and his ability to get a task done know no bounds.

Yarrick’s stats.


Normal commissar special rules apply; Stubborn and Summary Execution.

Addition special rules;

Sergeant Saultern I Sentence You! РIf the unit fails a leadership test then Sergeant Saultern must be the first lower ranked officer to be killed. If Sergeant Saultern is already dead choose another  officer at random and remove him as a casualty.

Aura of Discipline РEven during his early carrier Yarrick was something special, destined for greatness. Yarrick has the Aura of Discipline special.

Emperor¬†Protect!¬†– Yarrick’s young zeal means he exists to serve the Emperor. The Emperor is his primary concern, even on distant worlds where all others seem to have lost their way – Yarrick always thinks of his¬†God-Emperor. While holding an objective Yarrick’s unit have the Counter-Attack special rule.


  • Flak armour
  • Laspistol
  • Close combat weapon
  • Frag grenades

Sergeant Saultern

Saultern is a sergeant in command of a regular squad of¬†troopers, his superior is Yarrick, Yarrick¬†watches Saultern’s¬†every move as well as the commands he issues like a preying mantis ready to pounce. Yarrick spares Saultern¬†from execution early in the book and this plays on his mind. He’s always got an eye¬†Saultern waiting for him to make a mistake.

Normal sergeant stats apply to Saultern.



  • Flak armour
  • Laspistol
  • Close combat weapon
  • Frag grenades

Addition special rules;

Charrrgge! – The constant gaze of Yarrick upon¬†Saultern forces him¬†to confront his fears of battle and presses¬†him forwards into places he would really rather not be.¬†When charging the combined squad may charge up to 3D6″ instead of the usual 2D6″. This effect is not cumulative with other charge distance¬†modifiers. If Saultern dies and is removed from play the squad must charge its¬†usual distance of 2D6″.


Rasp takes Yarrick under his wing and is slowly teaching him the ways of battle and of the galaxy. Rasp is trying to make¬†the young commissar see that war is not only fought on the battlefield but also by¬†political figures and the murky waters they tread. His sly nods and hand gestures show Yarrick when he is needed and when he is not within the games played by¬†Mistral’s officials. After meeting an old and trusted squad mate Rasp is captured due to his eagerness to help his old friend.

Normal lord commissar stats apply to Rasp.


Normal lord commissar special rules apply; Independent Character, Stubborn, Aura of Discipline, Chain of Command and Summary Execution.

Addition special rules;

On Me Men! – Rasp¬†my never leave the unit he starts with voluntarily. If he’s forced out of unit cohesion then he must move and regroup with the unit in the next movement phase.

Hello Old Friend – Rasp’s eagerness to help his old squad mate and trusted long term friend¬†got the better of him. If¬†any enemy HQ unit from one of the factions below¬†comes within 6″ of Rasp roll a D6 – on a roll of 1 or 2 Rasp is¬†captured and is removed as a casualty. This test can only be taken once per game.

  • Space Marines (all types apart from Chaos Space Marines)
  • Imperial Guard
  • Eldar
  • Tau
  • Inquisition
  • Imperial Knights
  • Grey Knights
  • Adepta Sororitas


  • Flak armour
  • Bolt¬†pistol
  • Close combat weapon
  • Frag grenades
  • Krak grenades
  • Refractor field


During the first engagement Betzner¬†takes down a large Chaos walker. This was a great feat but not without it’s downfall. During the firefight Betzner¬†is “touched” mentally by the creature.

Normal heavy weapons team¬†stats apply to Betzner’s team.


Addition special rules;

I Can See Clearly Now! –¬†Betzner’s new found abilities are somewhat random, just like the Warp. Roll for Betzner’s shooting attacks separately from the other missile launcher teams. Before rolling to hit roll a D6 and consult the below table;

  • 1 – ¬†the missile targets¬†the nearest friendly model, roll to hit as normal against the friendly unit. If the missile is a frag then¬†place the template over the nearest friendly unit and roll for scatter as normal.
  • 2¬†to¬†5 – target¬†as normal.
  • 6 –¬†target¬†as normal and any hits are resolved as Pinning¬†and¬†Rending.


  • Flak armour
  • Lasgun
  • Frag grenades


Your comments and feedback are always very welcome!

Why not a review

I am not an avid reader. I have read a handful of business books, a few Iraq and Afghanistan books, many Bernard Cornwell novels as well as a few classics such¬†as Catcher in the Rye, Life of Pi, 1984, Brave New World and Catch 22. This I don’t see as a great repertoire for a 30 year old. My original thought was to write a book review but I don’t think I’m¬†qualified to do that!