As the title states: what is the process to create a new Space Marine Chapter? I.e.

  • What parties are involved in the decision making to create a new chapter?
  • How is it decided, and who decides, what Gene Seed is is used?
  • How is it decided, and who decides, what Planet shall be their Homeworld? Does the Governor of that planet have any way to accept / decline that proposal or is it a fact the moment it is decided on e.g. Terra?
  • How is it decided, and who decides, the ressources they have access to? I.e., who decides what Space Ships they have, their armoury and so on?
  • Who is responsible for creating the first Astartes?
  • Who is responsible for training the first Astartes?
  • Who is responsible for accepting their doctrine?
  • Who and how is the Chapter Master chosen?
  • Is there some sort of oversight after they've been created officially and given their homeworld, i.e. after the training process is finished?
  • I don't know how often lore actually describes this process. It's mostly a thing to just let players use their own color schemes when painting armies.
    – Harabeck
    Mar 2, 2020 at 20:50
  • @Harabeck I am just wondering how this happens. Lots has been done for the game and then described more accurately in the lore or more details have been given in a blog or something similar.
    – Shade
    Mar 3, 2020 at 6:52
  • but what I'm saying is that I'm not aware of any lore actually fleshing it out. As far as I know, it only exists as a little side-note to let players use their own colors. When new chapters are made up, their origins are shrouded in mystery (See the Blood Ravens chapter from the Dawn of War games).
    – Harabeck
    Mar 3, 2020 at 14:53
  • Its worth to mention, that in the case of the 2nd founding the Legions were divided by specialty/trait of characters of the companies, i.e. by sending the most bloodthirsty Blood Angels to the Flesh Tearers chapter
    – Yasskier
    Mar 4, 2020 at 1:39

1 Answer 1


In answer to your questions about the process and decisions about actually making the new space marines see the below quote. Note this is for brand new chapters created from scratch.

According to their charter, each Chapter is obliged to send 5% of its genetic material to the Adeptus Mechanicus on Mars. This ‘tithe’ has two purposes. Firstly, it enables the Adeptus Mechanicus to monitor the health of each Marine Chapter. Secondly, it enables the Adeptus Mechanicus to store gene-seed with a view to founding new Chapters.

A new Chapter cannot be founded overnight. A single suitable gene-seed must be selected for each zygote. Zygotes are then grown in culture and implanted into human test-slaves. These test-slaves must be biologically compatible and free from mutation. Test-slaves spend their entire lives bound in static experimental capsules. Although conscious, they are completely immobile, serving as little more than mediums within which the various zygotes can develop. From the original slave come two progenoids, which are implanted within two more slaves, from which come four progenoids and so on. It takes about 55 years of constant reproduction to produce 1,000 healthy sets of organs. These must be officially sanctioned by the Master of Adeptus Mechanicus and then by the High Lords of Terra speaking for the Emperor. Only the Emperor can give permission for the creation of a new Chapter.


With regards to resources, home planet etc I imagine that is all decided on and implemented during that 55 year period, it might also be dependent on the reason for the chapter creation. For instance if a chapter is to sent immediately to war then I imagine their home planet is not the immediate concern.

As far as Doctrine all marines should follow the Codex Astartes as a base, they will then probably add their own slant on this based on the inherent traits that come from there geneseed, for instance Imperial Fists will naturally find themselves forming defensive lines and taking a measured approach, Whitescars successors will find they love being on fast moving bikes. This will be the case regardless of whether the chapter knows its origins or not.

Training, remember that all marines are trained through direct insertion of tactics and methods to their brains (can't remember the right description for this) so all marines will be ready set up to go to war. The chapter Master and officer corps will be selected using the normal selection process, this is a new chapter so I imagine the first set of marines will be from inductees identified as strong officer material.

In terms of oversight, all space marine chapters are watched, closely, so any new chapter would simply move into this process.

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