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I got in a heated argument over the following case, in which I created a scenario below to have clarifications on the Look Out Sir rule.

Let's say you've got a squad made up of:

  • 1 Space Marine (Unit Type: Infantry)
  • 1 Space Marine Sergeant (Unit Type: Infantry + Character)
  • 1 Company Master (Unit Type: Infantry + Independent Character)
  • 1 Librarian (Unit Type: Infantry + Independent Character)

On page 39 of the rulebook it says "Independent Characters pass look Out, Sir rolls on a 2+ (see page l6)."

My understanding of the rules, page 16 & 39, is that the 2+ roll is allowed only when an independent character is the one trying to save any other type character:

  • The SM takes the hit, no LOS save possible. (This is pretty clear in the rules, just stating the case in order to state all possibilities)
    • The Sergeant takes the hit, the SM can try to save him on 4+.
    • The Sergeant takes the hit, the Company Master can try to save him on 2+.
    • The Sergeant takes the hit, the Librarian can try to save him on 2+.
    • The Company Master takes the hit, the SM can try to save him on 4+.
    • The Company Master takes the hit, the Sergeant can try to save him on 4+.
    • The Company Master takes the hit, the Librarian can try to save him on 2+.

Am I right in all the cases above?

My friend states that the 2+ roll is made when any model tries to save the independent character, which would make his understanding of the rules as such:

  • The SM takes the hit, no LOS save possible. (no change)
  • The Sergeant takes the hit, anyone can try to save him on 4+.
  • The Company Master takes the hit, anyone can try to save him on 2+.

Who's right, who's wrong, are we both wrong somewhere?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Your friend is right. The model taking the wound makes the role, not the model 'saving' him.

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+1 I've always seen it played this way in person and in battle reports. Although it's not explicitly stated in the rules (as is so often the case with this rulebook), "This represents the character ducking back further into the unit, holding a comrade in the line of fire,or being pushed aside by a selfless ally." implies that it is the model taking the wound that makes the roll. –  Timothy Jones Nov 3 '13 at 22:25
2  
It's worth noting that a successful look out sir doesn't mean the wound is "saved", just that someone else takes the wound. Of course, the newly wounded model can try to save the wound with their armour or invulnerable save. –  Timothy Jones Nov 3 '13 at 22:27
2  
I've seen people quote that line from the book in this argument but everyone seems to dismiss the fact that the third example in it is "...being pushed aside by a selfless ally" which appears to contradict the reasoning used to bring this to the table as evidence. IMHO, reading that line does not support the argument one way or the other and in fact only furthers the confusion, n'est pas? –  thanby Apr 3 at 12:07

There certainly is ambiguity in the Rulebook about which model determines what minimum die to hit, though I believe it makes more sense from the 'saving' model's point of view to do the roll.

From BRB p. 16:

When a wound (or unsaved Wound) is allocated to one of your characters, and there is another model from the same unit within 6", he's allowed a Look Out, Sir attempt.

So far, not so good, "he's allowed" is ambiguously attributable to 'one of your characters' or 'another model from the same unit'.

Consider the following text, however:

This represents:

  1. the character ducking back further into the unit,
  2. holding a comrade in the line of fire, or
  3. being pushed aside by a selfless ally.

Now, I agree that #1 and #2 both seem to indicate action on behalf of the model-taking-the-wound. #3, on the other hand, seems to indicate action on behalf of the saving-model.

The real dealbreaker for me, however, is the name of the mechanic itself: Look out, Sir!

When you consider the mechanic name, such a line only seems to make sense being spoken by the saving-model: put another way, it is the awareness/adeptness of the saving-model which instructs the character to hide/hold a comrade.

This may very well be just splitting hairs on fluff, but I think the Independent Character rule (p. 39) supports this interpretation: an independent character is a more impressive unit and is appropriately more successful at saving the target (represented by 2+ rather than 4+).

So by your friend's argument, he's basically positing that the more important the initial wound target is, the more successful an infantry is at saving him.

And your rules (for which I agree with all 7 bullet points), you're positing that the more talented/strong the saving-model is, the better the saving model is at successfully saving/alerting the target.

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According to FAQ 1.5, "(or unsaved wounds)" is now removed from the mechanic description. In addition, Look out, Sir! only resolves to the closest model in the unit to the character, instead of the 6" range to find a unit previously granted. –  hexparrot May 13 at 14:36

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