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Optimum Commander Loadouts?
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Old 06 Jul 2014, 02:58   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Default Optimum Commander Loadouts?

Hye guys, been a while.
Anyway i'll be putting in an order from amazon for a battleforce and a hammerhead soon. I know what i'm gonna do with everything else, pretty straight froward, but what about the commander?
I'm going to convert up a cool and unique looking one using some extra bitz/ parts of drones and such on one of the XV8s in the battleforce. I am thinking giving him TL Plasma rifle, airbursting frgmentation projector, and a shield generator, (and XV8-02 iridium suit if i have the points). I will then attach a pair of XV8 bodyguards each with a fusion blaster, burst cannon, and a shield generator. I'm thinking this will allow for them to go up against a variety of targets while also being a hard-to-kill warlord. I'm working towards a more aggressive and mobile play-style than i have currently been able to do with my small number of models. I know there are other good ways to run your commander (drone controller attached to bunch of markerlight drones, buffmander attached to broadsides) are there any other methods/ loadouts people have had success with? what are your thoughts?
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Old 06 Jul 2014, 22:35   #2 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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i have had good success with the following loadout
Commander with 2 plasma rifles, ATS, Iridium Armour, PEN, Onager Gauntlet, ect
2 body guards with dual plasma, and ATS
12 s6 ap2 shots, with the ability to reroll pen against tanks, wounds agiansts monsters, and 5+ chose targets
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 07:29   #3 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Hmmm... big plasma unit seems pretty darn good. Is there any potential issue with going for a varied loading? Like, are varied ones like I'm gonna do good, or would it be better to focus on one thing?
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 08:03   #4 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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The command squad from your original post makes me leery. It's breaking at least 2 sacred rules of Tau.

1) Specialized unit > jack of all trades. No matter how you slice it, a suit designed for a specific purpose will out-do a suit for a mixed purpose. The further apart these purposes are (like a fusion blaster and a burst cannon) the greater the magnitude of the waste. Basically if you're firing the fusion blaster at anything less than something with a 2+ save or an AV value it's being wasted, while the burst cannon can't even dent half the vehicles out there and would much rather be shooting up guardsmen, which is in turn a waste of the high strength and low AP (and melta property) of the fusion blaster.

2) Always trim the fat. This is especially true in smaller games where you don't have the points elsewhere to make up for inefficient choices, but should always be on a Tau player's mind when designing a list. What do the bodyguards really bring to the table over elite crisis suits? Auto-passing LOSir is kind of nice... but 2+ is probably going to be good enough, and not worth an extra 10 points a suit to upgrade. Further, twin-linking a BS5 characters weapon is also overkill and the hardpoint could likely be better spent.

So what should you do with your commander? The answer is actually pretty simple. Ask yourself where your army is lacking and use your commander to plug the holes. A Shas'O is a powerful battlesuit, and can singlehandedly fill the gaps in a list. Need more anti infantry in your list? Give him a pair of burst cannons and put him in a squad of gun drones. Need anti-meq? Double plasma. Need anti-tank? Double fusion. Need buffs? Support'O. Etc. Tau commanders lead as necessary; with the right tools they are masters of whatever role they are required to fill for the greater good so take advantage of that.

Alternatively, you can go the other route and design something that looks cool or has a cool backstory and play that too. Hell, if you've got the conversion skills make yourself a converted Farsight, or Longknife from forgeworld

Last edited by Carrelio; 07 Jul 2014 at 08:05.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 08:13   #5 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Ok. So my revised idea is give the commander double plasma, shield generator and AFP, then 2+ armor suit if I have points. Then bodyguards take dual plasma and shield generators. The reason I am using bodyguards is my elites section is full with 2 stealth teams and a riptide. So a "one size fits all" is out. I don't really need more melta as the stealth teams can deal with that. Riptide can also pop things with ion accelerator, and I'm getting a hammerhead as well.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 08:30   #6 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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Why the AFP on the commander? With 3 weapons you're wasting 15 points a turn guaranteed and it doesn't synthesize all that well with the rest of the team. Also, maybe some drones? A couple shield drones would push you into the next leadership check category, or 6 gun drones with a drone controller on your commander would be a scary addition to that command squad's anti-infantry potential.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 14:55   #7 (permalink)
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Personally I run 2 Missile Pods, Puretide Chip, Shield Gen, Stims and Iridium. But then I do love watching him tank entire armies of fire.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 20:50   #8 (permalink)
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More frequently I am seeing Space Marines allied with Eldar, plasma can take out any of them and AFP allows for extra anti-squishy infantry. Perhaps I could just twin-link the plasma then instead of 2 separate ones? If i think about it 2 fusion blasters in the army (from stealth suits) may not be enough, so i might switch back to fusion and burst cannon on guards. give commander the signature system for TL them if he doesn't shoot, add some gun and missile drones with a drone controller on one bodyguard, with a single shield drone to cover for his lack of a shield generator to do drone controller and BOOM! mega deathstar unit that can take on most anything. If they target a vehicle, commander doesn't shoot to TL rest of the unit (fusions and missiles), if they target a non vehicle unit, commander unleashes his weapons along with rest of the unit's massive amount of anti-infantry. Sound good? Shoot, now I'm back where I started... Well perhaps i'll build them without weapons attched and playtest before finalizing weapons loadout.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 21:54   #9 (permalink)
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Nope. Nope nope nope. You've got role confusion out your ears and it's going to lead to a huge waste of points that is less a multitarget crushing deathstar than it is confused and struggling jack of all trades.

If you create a Support'O/Buffmander then make him a Support'O. Don't give him weapons he won't use. Every turn you don't use something you have paid for you are wasting points for it; that handicaps your list. Every turn you don't fire a weapon you paid for it's as though you didn't take it at all and you're just playing with a point disadvantage. Every turn you don't use the C&C node so you can shoot it's as though you're playing with a point disadvantage equal to the cost of your weapons. You are actively handicapping yourself.

I've touched on twin-linking the commander's plasma, and it's okay... but kind of a waste considering you're paying for it to only reroll 1/6 of the shots. And his weapon options are confused again, 2 different optimal targets, 2 different optimal ranges.

Mixed purpose weapons on a unit is the same story. I've already told you why this falls short in my previous post. At best you could push for burst cannon+plasma (used against light to medium infantry) or plasma+fusion (used against heavy infantry to vehicles), but understand even these are taking a hit over a unit that uses purely a single weapon choice like burst cannons (light infantry), plasma rifles (medium to heavy infantry), and fusion blasters (tanks).

Missiledrones may only be taken on broadsides.

I urge you not to build this unit. It is a trap.
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Old 08 Jul 2014, 00:23   #10 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Understood. guess I'm going plasma then, or plasma/fusion. I'm keeping the AFP though, i like to be able to choose based on what i come against on a turn by turn basis.
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