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Space Marines vs Tau Empire
Old 28 Mar 2006, 10:52   #1 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
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Default Space Marines vs Tau Empire

My space marine army has been suffering a fair bit for a long while at the hands of Tau armies, and through many ardous defeats, I've picked up a little things that help me everytime. These might not be useful at all to anyone, but hopefully they will. Enjoy.

Closing the Distance

Three things I've found are very useful in closing the distance and taking the fight to the tau. These three things are scout squads, land speeders, and terminator squads.

Scout squads, with their infiltrator rule, make it easy for them to set up close to the enemy, and when given bolt pistol and close combat weapon, can pretty much tear apart anything in the tau army book. Even kroot can be beaten down by these guys, though picking a fight with kroot isn't recommended....Biggest threats from scouts are subminition railgun rounds and missile pods from crisis suits. Alternatively, scouts are very useful sitting far back and shooting with massed sniper rifle and heavy bolter fire, although this is now compromised with the new sniper drones. Overall, scouts are better used to tie up enemy units early in the game so the majority of your army can cross the board unhindered.

Landspeeders, are, in my experience, a must when facing Tau armies. Many Tau armies will opt for a hammerhead gunship, or the new skyray missile platform, making a squadron of Landspeeders armed with multi-meltas on a suicide run a quick way to take out that troublesome tank. Many people who watch me play consider this a waste of resources, but if a 65 point landspeeder can take out a 160 point hammerhead, I'm ahead in the game. This tactic does somewhat rely on getting the first turn, and can be a do-or-die tactic, but with the proper use of terrain can work exceptionally well.

Terminators can deep strike. 'Nuff said.

Troublesome Tau Units

These are the units that I have the most trouble with taking down when facing a Tau army, or generally become pains in the neck. Vespid, Crisis, Stealthsuits and Broadsides.

The AP3 of the vespid gun caused me quite a few headaches, until i reworked my army list to include a landspeeder with the sole task of hunting vespid with a heavy bolter (ignores their weak armour) and a seven man tactical squad armed with a heavy bolter.

Crisis move away too much and behind cover, and I'm having trouble dealing with these units still. If anyone has any tricks, please tell me.

Stealthsuits can pump out a withering hail of fire which quite frankly is intimidating. Night fighting rules dont make that big a difference, and simple bolters make effective weapons against these.

Broadsides still annoy me, but I'm using devastator squads with lascannons and predator annhilators for the moment to take them out.
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Old 28 Mar 2006, 16:33   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

For closing the distance, remember that getting the scout sarge a teleport homer to go along with the termies is always a fun combo. ;D It is something that I am hoping to try on Friday.
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Old 10 Apr 2006, 01:49   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

...Cant all space marine squads have drop pods in every game? Why not just use those?
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Old 04 May 2006, 04:41   #4 (permalink)
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Because you need models to represent them. If you use a ramen bowl, I smash it in your face and write a stirring batrep how my enemy got crushed on impact with the ground due to shoddy construction.
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Old 11 May 2006, 06:57   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

Interesting but from my experience my Tau army has almost 0 problems from Scouts, Terminators and Land Speeders and has more trouble just shooting down tactical squads. If an enemy just sent 60+ space marines racing forward at me guns blazing that might be a problem. A submunition round eliminates scouts in usually one shot. Land Speeders go down to a multitude of weapons in the Tau army from pulse rifles to secondary weapons on tanks and terminators get torn to pieces by plasma and fusion fire from battlesuits. Ive never had deep striking terminators survive a shooting phase against me, even grey knight terminators. Its not too hard for Tau to send just enough fire at those units to get rid of them before they cause problems and much of the time I simply ignore scouts even with sniper rifles because they just dont do anything. They kill a few drones detatched from a fish.

I would actually say large assault marine squads with chaplain attatched are a scary thing for Tau. Keep them behind cover for a few turns until your sure you can catch a squad in assault then move out. It works especially well if you manage not to kill your target on your assault phase but instead on the Tau players assault phase making sure your not getting shot. Devastators are good against Tau. Fill up the squad with ablative wounds and lascannons or missil launchers and you can not only pop the tanks but you can insta kill suits and it will be hard for the Tau to eliminate the Devastators easily or efficiently though you might want to keep say a scout squad nearby. Its very frustrating to have a 2 model drone squad sitting right infront of the Devastators forcing a priority check or assaulting them and keeping them from shooting.

Also believe it or not I find rhinos to be very, very effective, not because they kill anything at all but because they are so darn pathetic the enemy rarely bothers to shoot at them especially if they arent even carrying troops. Deploy the tacticals right away and then just zoom the rhino right up into the Tau gunlines. Park it and leave it. Suddenly the Tau will have a giant tank in the way that blocks all their lanes of fire and will either have to try and waste time destroying it or moving. Either way you suddenly cut off the Tau long range fire support and can let your army devastate the more mobile elements and once the static lines have cleared out the obstructions they will probably be too late to save their comrades. You can also use them to bottleneck certain areas and provide mobile terrain for that assault squad. Got a big gap to the Tau line with no terrain, drive a rhino in there and park it. Have the assault squad jump behind it and next turn jump out and charge. Whatever you do rhinos can be very effective for controlling the Tau firing options.

Tacticals are also your friend, the more marines you have the better, quality doesnt really cut it that much as Tau can deal with a few elites very easily but when they have to try and take out full 10 man tactical squads marching across the field with a cc tooled Librarian, chaplain or captain in their midst fully ready to rip the Tau apart as soon as any of them get there, well thats just not a good day for the Tau and the more bodies you put out the more ground you cover and the less movement options the mobile Tau units have. A battlesuite cant use JSJ to hide if there is no place to hide behind and a Hammerhead cant always keep front armor faced when there are tacticals with melta guns and power fists on all sides.

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Old 11 May 2006, 15:29   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

I agree with Vash113, I have more problems with tacticals and assaults at full strength than I do with anything else.

Speeders are easy as, gun drones usually sort them out.

Scouts? One sub, some pulse, and no more problem.

Termies? My god I don't think I have ever seen a termie deep striker survive a turn against me, or foot sloggers get near enough.

Dealing with suits, you either have to wait for us to slip up, or simply use indirect. Or assault marines. God I hate them.
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Old 29 May 2006, 23:35   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

i don't have that problem, my wolf scouts pop out behind them and where'd that squad of tau go?i love cheesy space wolf rules)
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Old 30 May 2006, 05:03   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

Originally Posted by Anberlin
i don't have that problem, my wolf scouts pop out behind them and where'd that squad of tau go?i love cheesy space wolf rules)
Maybe so but any Tau player who knows wolf scouts can do that wil be prepared and that one squad of Tau wont be worth much and those scouts will soon follow. You cant relly on any one tactic.

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Old 30 May 2006, 05:12   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

Assult marines are the bane of my Tau. espeically if they include a chaplin. Having a massive, fast, CC oriented unit that can re-roll to hit (espeicaly if they have furious charge- shudder) means that if I am unable to take them out right away, they will get into combat and render my superior firepower useless.

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Old 09 Jun 2006, 01:40   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Space Marines vs Tau Empire

Keep in mind as well that rhinos that do not explode ( ie: those that do not suffer a penetrating hit) will remain on the board and continue to block line of sight as wrecks. Thus if the Tau want them to die, they are going to have to make use of at least some above average guns in order to ensure it is kept out of the way.

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