Look out Sir Rule
This rule affects shooting.
Models cannot target a unit that contains any Character models with a Wounds characteristic of 9 or less with a ranged weapon while that Character unit is within 3″ of any of the following:
– A friendly unit that contains 1 or more Vehicle or Monster models with a wounds characteristic of 10 or more.
– A friendly non-Character unit that contains 1 or more Vehicle or Monster models.
– A friendly non-Character unit that contains 3 or more models.
In all cases, if that Character unit is both visible to the firing model and it is the closest enemy unit to the firing model, it can be targeted normally. When determining if that Character unit is the closest enemy unit to the firing model, ignore other enemy units that contain any Character models with a Wounds characteristics of 9 or less.
What does this look like on the board?
Essentially this means that CHARACTERs will for the most part need something to hide behind nearby.
Characters can’t cover for other Characters
Being surrounded by Small Units doesn’t work
Another point to mention, though the rules does make it pretty clear, is that you must be within 3” of a single unit that has 3 or more models. Two units of 2 models each within 3″ does not protect a CHARACTER from being shot at.
It’s worth bearing this in mind offensively and defensively as Look Out Sir protection can be lost quite quickly.
What about ignoring LoS Weapons?
Essentially they do still work, but you have to follow the Look Out Sir rule still. The key argument against them working has been a very literal reading of this section of the rule.
…unless that CHARACTER is both visible to the to the firing model and it is the closest enemy unit…
Which some read as meaning that CHARACTERs have a special need to be visible, however the very similar wording is used in the Target Selection rules for 8th.
In order to target an enemy unit, a model from that unit must be within the Range of the weapon being used (as listed on its profile) and be visible to the shooting model. [Core Rules 8th Edition Pg5]
Essentially if the ignore Line of Sight weapons can ignore this requirement then then can also ignore the same requirement in the CHARACTER/Look Out Sir rules. You’d still need them to be the nearest model if they would otherwise be untargetable because of Look Out Sir.
Look Out Sir and Overwatch
Any rule that states the unit cannot be targeted unless it is the closest target (e.g. Look Out, Sir) does not apply when firing Overwatch. [Core Rules PDF Pg20]
Overwatch is not affected by the rule at all.
What if the closest unit isn’t visible?
The Character needs to be both Visible and the closest unit, so even if the closest enemy unit isn’t visible they still can’t be targeted.
Finally here’s a few more examples of the Look Out Sir Rule.
The entire rule was updated and is quoted above from this Core Rules FAQ – Page 1
Look Out Sir Around and Through Fights
If I have an HQ within the parameters of “look out sir” protection, but on the enemy side of shooting, with an engaged unit of mine in melee between my HQ and the enemy shooter, can my HQ be fired upon? In 8th, the errata ruled this out, a unit in cc still counts as the closest unit, even if it can’t be fired upon due to being in cc. Example, my HQ is 2″ in front of one of my tanks, however in front of him are one of my units in cc with an enemy unit, can an enemy shooter unit behind the ongoing melee fire over it at my HQ? – Robert Vaughan
Yes the unit in combat still counts as the closest for Look Out Sir. Just to make it 100% clear for everyone though as it’s sometimes tricky to parse the positions of models from a description like that here’s a diagram.
Whilst we’re discussing it lets also look at how Look Out Sir works when Characters are within Engagement Range and the unit can still shoot.