Otherwise known as 'The Phantoms'.

This is a shadowy special forces unit of the Earth Empire. Their existance is officially denied, but rumour and leaks suggest that they not only do exist, but have been implicated in a number of Imperial 'black ops' over the years.


The DSF is said to be organised into Squadrons (of about 50-80 personnel each).
Teams for a specific task are drawn from the parent Squadron and trained for specific operations with the emphasis on flexibility and professionalism. These Teams are allocated to in-theatre commanders as required and withdrawn at the end of the task.

The DSF includes a number of ancillary elements which are designed to make it autonomous and self-sufficient for most of its roles.
It therefore includes a Support Branch which provides training, intelligence, operational analysis, logistics and transport functions.


There are a wide variety of roles for which the DSF is employed.
a. Close protection / rescue of VVIPs.
b. Deep reconnaissance
c. Intelligence gathering
d. Search and destroy, sabotage, interdiction, disruption.
e. Pathfinding for other forces.
f. Weapon testing / evaluation.


DSF equipment is the same in most respects to standard Marine issue.
In addition the DSF is issued with specialised equipment of its own, and has the use of experimental or prototype equipment to suit the situation.

Training and Doctrine

All personnel take Marine training as basic. In addition, there are technical and operational skills including things like armoury, astronavigation and pacifier piloting.

The DSF doctrine is to provide specific and appropriate assistance to more conventional forces. The DSF is not part of a battle fighting task, and are generally employed on so long as their tasks lasts, and they are then withdrawn.

In fighting, mobility is the key. Strong points are normally left to the Marine Corps or Ground Forces.
The high movement rates, and the fact that room clearing is not their function means that standard combat robots are not normally deployed to DSF squads (unless some specialised task requires it).
APGW support is similarly regarded as unnecessary, and what support that is available is provided by a few manpack APGW launchers. Doctrine for their use is that they are primarily to destroy doors at long range in preparation for rapid movement.