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Turning Traitor: Testing the Enclaves
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Old 05 Feb 2014, 11:31   #1 (permalink)
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Default Turning Traitor: Testing the Enclaves

Hello,

As we all know, Crisis Suits are just about the coolest thing in the Tau Army, at least in my opinion, and with the wonderful Farsight Enclaves book, we have the opportunity to make a entire list using them.

Now, when making this list I set the theme of all XV8. Although this may be limiting with no Broadsides or Riptides or Pathfinders, I think it fits a theme- a Rapid Response Cadre that can be quickly redeployed to combat threats to the enclaves. As such, I have had to attempt to bring all the roles usually filled by support troops in with the suit configurations.

Without further ado, here is my attempt.

Commander (Warlord)
Twin-Linked Fusion Blaster, Fusion Blades
Target Lock, Vectored Retro-Thrusters
Shield Drone (Warscaper Drone)

Crisis Bodyguard Team
2 Crisis Bodyguard, 2 x Fusion Blasters, Target Lock
Bonding Knife Ritual
2 Shield Drones

Commander
Airbursting Fragmentation Projector
Target Lock, Drone Controller, Stimulant Injector
2 Marker Drones

Tempest Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Burst Cannon, Flamer
Bonding Knife Ritual
6 Gun Drones

Tempest Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Burst Cannon, Flamer
Bonding Knife Ritual
6 Gun Drones

Burning Eye Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Plasma Rifle, Target Lock
Bonding Knife Ritual
4 Marker Drones

Burning Eye Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Plasma Rifle, Target Lock
Bonding Knife Ritual
4 Marker Drones

Deathrain Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Missile Pods, Early Warning Override
Bonding Knife Ritual
2 Gun Drones

Deathrain Crisis Team
3 Crisis Shas'ui, 2 x Missile Pods, Early Warning Override
Bonding Knife Ritual
2 Gun Drones

Drone Squadron
4 x Marker Drones
1 x Shield Drone


1848 Points
48 Models (22 Suits)


Now for tactics.

As you can see, I think I have options to deal with GEQ, MEQ, TEQ, Heavy Armour and Light Armour. I have a low model count, but a high amount of accurate and potentially devastating fire power. Hordes may be tricky, but the Tempest suits and the AFP Commander can help thin them out a bit. My anti-flyer support is limited, but I'm hoping the EWO will help out, and if not, I might be lucky enough to get some Markerlight snapshots off.

Ultimately the strategy will be to utilise my mobility and firepower to concentrate on scoring and objective based play. This is another reason why I have chosen all XV8. For instance, I know Broadsides would be more optimal than my Deathrains, but they are relatively immobile and non-scoring (well most of the time).

Do you fellow Tau veterans think this could work? I am interested in proxying to trial this out, as the move to the Enclaves could be fun!
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Old 05 Feb 2014, 13:27   #2 (permalink)
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IMO, you're better off swapping the Flamers on the Burst Cannon teams for Drone Controllers. 8pts for +1BS on 6 Drones? Yes please! They're Twin-linked, so they'll get the mileage out of it!

I'm guessing your Warlord is joining the Bodyguards? In that case, he doesn't need a Target Lock. If he targets one squad, his Bodyguards use theirs' to target other squads. The only thing that's forced to "fire" at the same target as the Commander are the Shield Drones, but they, naturally, don't shoot.

I'd also say that the 4 Drone Marker squads attached to the Crisis teams likely won't give you many Markerlights, but as ablative Wounds they're better than nothing. Remember that your Plasma suits will be deep in enemy territory, though, so those Drones will be stripped.

Overall, I'd say this list naturally has flaws, but mobility and luck with the Jetpack rolls should see you do well. Most importantly, it looks fun as all hell to play. It also shows you have a ridiculous collection of Crisis Suits. :P
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Old 05 Feb 2014, 14:51   #3 (permalink)
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Alas no, I don't have all these Crisis Suits yet, I have a fair few, but am looking to expand and though this would be a fun exercise...

With the Drone Controllers, do all three Shas'uis need them, or will one suffice? I've never been particularly clear on who controls which drones... If it is a mere 8 points, then I will definitely drop a flamer from each team and the Commander's Target Lock and I'll be in my points! If I need 6 then it looks like the Shield Drone in the Drone Squadron is going...

With the Marker Drones, like you said, I'm not expecting them to be hugely useful, but on the off chance they can support some of my troops, it might be useful. I am tempted to swap them onto the Deathrain Teams for some more long ranged support, would that be more practical? Of course then I would lose some minor Flyer protection, but I could swap the EWOs over to the Plasma teams to deal with Deep Striking MEQs and TEQs...

And yes it is flawed. I don't think it can hope to take on a lot of armies without careful planning and movement, and a constant focus on the task at hand rather than outright destruction of the opponent. After all, I envisage this as a strike force, high mobile and heavily armed and tasked with seizing objectives in the face of great enemy threats before they can react.
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Old 05 Feb 2014, 16:33   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
With the Drone Controllers, do all three Shas'uis need them, or will one suffice? I've never been particularly clear on who controls which drones... If it is a mere 8 points, then I will definitely drop a flamer from each team and the Commander's Target Lock and I'll be in my points! If I need 6 then it looks like the Shield Drone in the Drone Squadron is going...
You only need one, then all Drones in the squad will adopt that model's Ballistic Skill.

As both the Deathrains and Marker Drones are 36", they work well together by hanging back and lighting stuff up. Also, bear in mind that getting Interceptor still means you have to Snap Shot against Fliers, and only get to fire one weapon as Multi-Tracker only applies to the Shooting Phase. (Interceptor happens at the end of the opponent's movement.) With that in mind, it's often not worth it...

EWOs on Plasma/Fusion don't work too well, as again you only get to fire one weapon each without any support, and don't get to fire it in your next Shooting Phase. You'll very rarely be in good range of the enemy Deep Strikers to bring the Plasma to bear. Riptides do this well because they have board-covering range, and can drop a Large Blast to cover the whole squad.
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Old 05 Feb 2014, 17:20   #5 (permalink)
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I can definitely see a few ways to improve this list. While to use other units would be very tempting, let's fine tune the concept of an all crisis cadre.

Talisman of Arhas Moloch: You want it. Take it. 25 pts to let your commander, his unit, and all units within 12" have a near 50% chance on deny the witch rolls. Against something like JotWW or beam witchfire, this could very literally save an entire unit from instant death. The 5+ invuln isn't bad either.

Similarly, the twin-linked fusion blaster and fusion blade is wasted on your commander, this is just adding to my dislike of the Enclave signature systems and it specifies it can only be taken on commanders. This is simply a do not take in my book, you would be better off replacing that commander with Farsight, and taking Brightsword as his bodyguard. He comes with a shield-warsaper drone already in addition to having WS4, and Farsight's S5 AP2 weapon will give you better results between them in close combat than the fusion blades alone ever would. All for costing about 10 points more than your current setup.

Missile pods and marker drones in a crisis team make a good combination, simply because of their uniform range. They are probably the easiest of all configurations to keep safe because of their fairly long range, and using target locks means you can avoid wasting markerlights on the target your deathrains will inevitably slaughter. Without the broadsides and riptides I would normally give EWO's to, the plasma rifle suits would probably be your best option for this.

The tempest teams you've put together are rather expensive at 216 points, and the majority of those models are 4+ saves. Unless they end up shooting at marines or vehicles (that's what your other suits are for), they do not need so many shots particularly out of ablative wound gun drones. You could get nearly as many hits just by adding a single drone controller and dropping two drones (there only needs to be one, by the way) and save yourself 21 points in the process. I would say go with 3 gun drones per team, and add a Shas'vre in the mix. That will give you better leadership to check on, but also a character to tank with. 4+ LOS rolls for him means that your drones have a chance of helping tank for you without needing to let your opponent shoot through your 4+ saves first. Make sure there is one drone controller, and one vectored retro-thrusters in the unit, the last upgrade being your choice of support system / weapon. Being able to hit & run out of combat using your drones I4 will make your close range units very slippery indeed.

Give your plasma rifle teams drones you think appropriate. Gun drones to increase their utility against all infantry, shield drones to make them more tanky. Including a Shas'vre in these units will increase survivability as well, letting your sargeant tank some hits with his armor, but being able to have a chance at protecting him if a S8+ or AP3+ weapon comes his way. Being able to cut down 5 marines and 3 - 4 terminators per turn on average means they shouldn't have to tank fire from their targets so much as heavy weapons, so I'd go with the shield drones here.

Commanders are great for skyfire! With BS5 and a fourth hardpoint, generic commanders are normally a pretty decent way to get skyfire when it's hard to come by. In this list, they will be your best option guaranteed. Missile pods will give 3.33 hits on average, and be able to penetrate AV10 - 11 with decent reliability. Fending off helldrakes and vendettas with this is difficult but possible in small numbers. It's far easier to accomplish with a codex list however, since a puretide chip can significantly increase their effectiveness. That said, there is a commander that can be taken with farsight that has the puretide chip, and attaching him to a skyfiring generic commander or a team of missilesides with velocity trackers would give you a very substantial anti-flier punch, not to mention a very mean anti-light vehicle unit. If you don't need both missileside teams for markerlight support, I'd definitely consider attaching Sha'vastos to one of them.

Ultimately you can't get any more suits into a single FOC than this, except if you start taking Farsight with the Eight. I would say try to cheapen some of these units, and fill in any weak points with other models specialized to the task. Tetras would be a fantastic way to include a mobile, dedicated markerlight unit, and Skyrays could also fill that rule while helping immensely with your anti-flier capabilities. Piranhas could comfortably take over light infantry and anti-horde duties from your tempest teams, while remaining significantly cheaper and able to reposition faster. Giving your opponent SOMETHING big to chew on would help immensely in keeping your suits alive, rather than letting every anti-tank and barrage weapon on the board blast away at them with some combination of cover and armor ignoring hits. Riptides serve well here, but so do Hammerheads. Crisis teams can play keep away with a few enemy units, but facing a full 2000 pt army with nothing else to shoot, your teams will start going down fast.
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