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Tau Warlord Traits
Old 20 May 2013, 22:46   #1 (permalink)
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Default Tau Warlord Traits

Over the past month that the Tau codex has been around for, I have been confronted by a rather (in my opinion) unusual trend in the Warhammer community (online and offline); that is, the praise of the Tau Warlord Traits. Since the Tau book’s release I have heard nothing but glowing praise for these traits; claims that they are the best traits of any book, easily blowing the BRB general warlord table away, and stomping every codex before and forever into the future into the ground. And this confuses me....

I have not had much success with the new Tau book as of yet, and I have dedicated a great amount of time into rectifying this issue through study of the book. In particular I have been looking at the warlord, and with him, the traits. Quite frankly, if I had to describe the Tau Warlord Traits with a single word, it would not be ‘Amazing’ or ‘God-like’ it would be ‘Gimmick’.

I just don’t see the unbelievable power that everyone else is talking about. Each one just seems so small scale. Even compared to the BRB! So what is making everyone sing it’s praises?

Arguments I can think of for our warlord trait are as follows:
- It’s the only warlord table I know which has the option to reroll if the ability does not affect your warlord (e.g. no guns/no jump pack; no problem, try again).
- No useless traits for our army (e.g. all shooting and moving oriented; no close combat required)
However this really doesn’t provide me with a lot of incentive to pick the Tau specific traits, since the arguments against are as follows:
- 4/6 traits are one use only, including some abilities which can be found elsewhere every turn.
- 4/6 have a very small area of effect, affecting only the warlord and his unit.

While I would very much like to hear the argument for why these traits are better than the average bear and hope to do so, I would also like to contribute my own understandings and solutions to this problem and thus bring up my own personal solution to the issue... abandoning the Tau Warlord Traits for our commander in exchange for the BRB again.

I would argue that of all the warlord traits available at the moment, the Command Traits of the BRB are the best for the Tau. Given the general trend to slow our army, and clump our units together, we see much less chance for our commander to go gallivanting off behind enemy lines, making a 12” mechanic a much more valuable set of traits. In many cases we will want out commander to be at the back supporting the battle line with his special gear upgrades, more than anything else, and that is what makes such area of effect abilities of such great value.

The pros of the Command Traits chart are as follows:
- All abilities last the duration of the game (none of this one use only business)
- Large area of effect (every single one has a 12” bubble)
- Range of abilities with a general focus on buffing friendly units (or in one case disrupting enemy units)
The cons on the Command Traits chart are as follows:
- Only 5/6 traits provide any benefit for Tau (increasing charge distance by 1” will not help us... shame it doesn’t benefit assault moves)

So what do you think TO? Am I totally mistaken, and the Tau abilities are superior? Are the two comparable (possibly bringing a different trait set to different battles)? Or is the Command Traits set superior, giving more reliable options even if they are a little more limited.

Last edited by Carrelio; 20 May 2013 at 23:01.
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Old 20 May 2013, 23:04   #2 (permalink)
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I think the core of your issue is not the "Warlord Traits" as much as it seems to be that you disagree with the compliment of the Warlord traits. Just for the record, I agree that the Warlord Traits are a gimmick and I can not even see one instance in the past where a trait would have swayed my battle plan. I have just gotten to the point I do not care.

I feel the core of the issue comes from when someone just starts in with the compliments of the new Dex and start talking as if Tau are now unstoppable. I tell my sons the same thing everytime they play. Tau is still the most unforgiving tactical army I have ever played. (Experienced Marine, Black templar, Nid, SoB, Grey Knight, Necron player) Yet, when I talk about the Dex, I hear it called over powered, god like, and I also do not see this in the Dex. It didn't get rid of any weakness in the Tau playstyle. If I have to say, it added more weakness, while improving the strengths.

Just my two cents.
So what you are saying is that your Ground Cadre has lots of Air Support?

No. What I am saying is that my Air Support has lots of Ground Cadre.

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Old 20 May 2013, 23:06   #3 (permalink)
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I don't mind the compliments at all, I just don't believe they are true, which brings us back to the real root of the problem, which is the warlord traits themselves.
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Old 21 May 2013, 02:52   #4 (permalink)
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They only warlord trait I like out of the new dex is the deepstrike with out scatter and works well with farsight and the 3d6 jump and it works well with shadowsun other than that if u would take a Shas'o the brb traits would be better.
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Old 21 May 2013, 08:02   #5 (permalink)
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The essential problem i feel with out warlord traits is that they are situational.
When people look at them, they see 6/6 traits that are game changing, and which could easily mean victory. We however, see 5/6 traits that would in almost no way help the style of play that we have built. In our codex, we are not able to predict what we will roll, and therefore it has virtually no impact on our army list. What use is the free deep strike/3d6 scatter if your commander is designed to outflank with some kroot and ulatize the multi-spectrum suit/control node. Hell, even the sky fire one would be virtually useless.

In this way the BRB outshines the Tau codex in that it is applicable in virtually all situations. It is true, that individually very few of them are better than the tau, but they are far more useful in miscellaneous situations, and in positions that actually benefit the tau. With the Tau codex ones you rely heavily on dice to suit your purpose.

In short I agree with Carrelio, and the above justifies that belief.
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