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Tau 1250 list (First Ever) (Need Help)
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 06:22   #1 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
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Default Tau 1250 list (First Ever) (Need Help)

Hey, Brand new to Tau and 40k. Put together and Army list and could use some review on it.

1250 (1249)

HQ: Commander
-Drone Controller
-Shield Genetator
Fusion Blaster
Plasma Rifle
Command and Control Node
Multi-Spectrum Sensor Suite
Iridium Armor
Neuroweb System Jammer
2 Marker Drones

12 Fire Warriors
Shas'Ui
Bonding zknife Ritual

12 Fire Warriors
Shas'ui
Bonding Knife Ritual

3 XV8 Crisis Battlesuits
Shas'Vre
2 Missile Pods Each
Shield Generator Each

XV104 Riptide
Ion Accelerator
Smart Missile System
Early Warning Override
Stimulant Injector

10 Pathfinders
Shas'Ui
2 Marker Drones
Bonding Knife Ritual

Hammerhead Gunship
Submunitions Rounds
Smart Missile System
Disruption Pod
1 Seeker Missile
Black sun Filter

Let me know what I need to switch up. This is really all that I've got ordered at the moment. I'd like to throw in an Aegis Defence Line, but I know not what the point cost is on one. Nor do I know the reason people use it or what it does. I'm guessing it just gives a 4+ Cover.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 07:27   #2 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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It looks like you're overreaching to hit 1250 points; trim this list back to 1000 points and it will function waaaay better. Overreaching is a nasty pitfall that pretty much every new Tau player makes in designing a list. Just remember your goal should always be to complete a battlefield goal for the least points possible whenever you design a list.
Allow me to help with the budget cuts.

The commander is confused. He has a pair of weapons that are perfect for shooting... but a set of specialty items that he can't use if he shoots (or if you want to look at it the other way around, he can't use his guns if he's using the buffs). Either option is an amazing one on its own, but together it's just about the biggest waste of points in a Tau army.

Bonding knives on everything. Simply not worth taking. That's 12 points for a chance to maybe stop 3 firewarriors running off the table. Glad you didn't bond the suits at least (since you can never fall below 25% of 3 miniatures).

Marker drones on the pathfinder team. They straight up shoot worse, and cost more... no reason at all to take them in this team since the regular infantry movement of the pathfinders will restrict their mobility, and the lower toughness will average their toughness lower as well. Drop them or move them. Speaking of the marker drones... the commander's weapons aren't the most conducive to markerdrone duty either, consider moving them (and their drone controller) to the other battlesuit unit, or swapping them out to shield drones instead.

And that brings us to the other battlesuit unit! Missilepods are probably the easiest weapon to avoid return fire with. Big range means a little movement on your end goes a long way. Use cover saves and total line of sight blocking terrain to avoid damage and save yourself the cost of those pricey shield generators.

Riptide is okay. Don't expect it to deal a lot of damage, expect it to take a lot of heat off the rest of your army though! Consider a fusion blaster instead of smart missiles and don't be afraid to bum-rush it across the field or even punch a tank!

Hammerhead could probably do without the seeker missile if you're willing to part with it. S8 AP3 against front armour won't be doing a lot of good these days.

Squad leaders. Not really necessary. Pathfinders who take a hit will die, end of story. Same with fire warriors. 10 points for 1 point of leadership is pretty debatable.

And I think that's just about everything. Just as a side note, check out the 'command' warlord traits from the rulebook rather than the Tau codex specific ones. I don't know why people keep overlooking them... they win games for armies like Tau (pretty much all 12" bubble powers... and the Tau like to clump in 12" bubbles already).

P.S. Welcome to the forum!

Last edited by Carrelio; 07 Jul 2014 at 07:33.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 15:58   #3 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Thanks for replying! I appreciate the help, but I do have some more questions. I'll list them out:

1. You said you can never fall below 25% with three models. And you said the thing about saving 3 fire warriors. Are you not forced to take a LD test if you lose more than 25% of your unit?
2. With the commander: I have him two marker drones and drone controller so I could have them shoot at BS 5/ rerolling to hit. And I have him with those guns so that if there is a big target, I have the choice to buff my unit or pour a ton of powerful shots into a target.
4. I can come to terms with losing the BK Ritual. But isn't it always great to have a unit champion?
Thanks for the help!
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 17:51   #4 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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1) Leadership has 2 key points. First, you test if a unit loses 25% of its models in a phase, so if somebody shoots out a quarter of your guys, or if you walk through some particularly nasty dangerous terrain that eats one of your battlesuits. If a unit fails that leadership check it starts to run. It keeps running at the beginning of every movement phase until it falls off the edge of the table, or you roll a successful leadership check. However, if the unit has less than 25% of its original model count left (AKA 3/12 fire warriors) it has to roll double 1's to pass that leadership check. The only purpose of the bonding knife is that instead of rolling double 1's for this check, you roll regular leadership. It's super situational, and at the end of the day if you succeed all you've managed to do is save 3 fire warriors (27 points) about 50% of the time (so you'd be spending 12 points to sometime save 27 points). Likewise on battlesuit units which only have 3 models (unless you bring drones), you have to test leadership every time you lose a battlesuit... but you will never need to test on double 1's after they start to flee (partly because they run so fast they will be right off the board) because even if 2 die, the unit is still only 33.3% of its original size.

2) I can accept the commander's drones, they are kind of at risk because his range is so short that they will be on the front line almost exclusively, so they are in for a bumpy ride.
I however must object to the massive waste of points that guns+specialty buff systems are. No matter which option you pick to use in a turn you are effectively handicapping your list by 30-35 points. Tau were not always so lucky to be spoiled in their codex strength, it is a golden rule of list making for Tau to never waste a single point without purpose (the game starts before models ever hit the table).

4) The unit champion has arguments for both sides and is a point I put in there for you to choose if you wanted. It's a contestable issue because it's hard to calculate the likelihood it will be cost effective. I'll give you a brief overview of the reasons why its difficult to calculate.
- Looking at the numbers for the fire warriors, the leadership boost will increase your squad from 58% chance of succeeding on a leadership test to 72%; so a 14% increase. At 10 points, this is a 9.25% cost increase to the unit. From those numbers in a vacuum things actually look pretty good. We pay 9.25% to increase the chance of that save by 14%.
- This check only comes up occasionally so each turn you don't use it (the unit isn't targeted by something to force a leadership check), it wastes 10 points
- Typically each time you use it, it is decreasingly cost efficient; best case scenario (assuming you only lose 3 models each time) the first time you lose 3 models it's 12.3% the cost to gain 14% leadership (or a 1.7% gain), the second time it's 18.5% the cost (or a 4.5% loss in efficiency), and the third time you use it it's 37% of the cost of the remaining unit (or a 23% loss of efficient use of points).
-This assumes he survived at all and wasn't sniped out of the unit on the first shot.
-Typically when Tau take a leadership check... they are dead, T3 and a 4+ save isn't stopping a whole lot of anything, and to stick around in combat is the worst possible fate Tau can have (they actually want to lose their leadership check if they get charged).
So, moral of the story, take it if you want, lose it if you want. Most Tau players start out taking them, but I don't know many who continue to do so late into their gaming career.
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 20:00   #5 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Nice, I definitely see the costs of the BKR's now. And the use of a Shas'Ui. How would you deck out the commander? I'm set on all his equipment except the guns. Should I give him any guns at all? And what could I replace the Shield generators for? Early Warning Override? Maybe Vectored Retro-Thrusters (Could you explain the usefulness of the Retro thrusters?)
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Old 07 Jul 2014, 20:36   #6 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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You can go purely support with no weapons and put him in the missile pod battlesuit squad to buff them to the moon and back (rerolls to hit, ignores cover, and if you include the Puretide Engram Neurochip tank/monster hunter every turn). Basically he becomes a buff focused psycher who doesn't roll a leadership check and can't fail to use the power. It is a force multiplier, so the smaller the point in games, the less effective it is (basically the less stuff you have to multiply, the smaller the impact of that multiplication), but it should still be very effective.

Alternatively, dropping the buff gear and going weapons at this point value can be pretty good. The BS5 and high defenses on a commander means he can really lay down the hurt; even when he's working alone.

The suits should take whatever wargear your list needs to succeed, which could even be no wargear at all. If you feel like you might want some skyfire, you could for with that, or if you want to shoot multiple targets with the same unit maybe a couple target locks. At these point values you may be better off just leaving the wargear out, since they don't really need too much.

The Vectored Retro-Thruster basically acts as a way of increasing your odds of escaping combat. Battlesuits are pretty tough nuts to crack (with a pair of shield drones they can weather a non-dedicated assault unit without too much trouble for a couple turns)... but that means they also run the risk of being bogged down in close combat by a smart opponent (where their guns can no longer fire). You use your fastest initiative to make a hit-and-run move, so if you have so much as 1 drone in the unit you have a pretty good chance of outrunning most things. It's not useful all the time, and definitely not useful on suits with 36" range who should hardly ever be seeing combat, but 5 points for the whole unit to have a better chance of escaping close combat doom isn't a bad trade off for some people.
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Old 09 Jul 2014, 04:25   #7 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Hey! Sorry for the break, would it be a semi good idea to put the commander in a marker drone squadron?
And should I bring in an Aegis Defence Line?
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Old 09 Jul 2014, 06:22   #8 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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A Mark'O can be an amazing addition to a list, though the internet is very contested with it (some people won't play a game without one, others wouldn't take one even if they had a gun against their head). The best way I've found to run him (and the internet consensus) is as follows:

Shas'O - 177 points
- 2 missile pods
- target lock
- drone controller
- iridium armour
- 2 marker drones

Join him to a squad of 4 more marker drones and you pretty much have the perfect markerlight unit. Little over 200 points, highly maneuverable, highly survivable, and an average of 5 markerlight hits per turn.

The important thing here to remember is that the commander is his own unit, the target lock and 36" range on the lights and the missiles mean he is free to do his own thing while the lights do theirs. I typically use him to down light vehicles.

I personally don't bring terrain to my games, but some people like to do it. My main issue with defense lines, or skyshields, bastions, or other buildings is that you are paying points for an asset that your opponent can easily take control of. Now, Tau are better at gunlines than they used to be, and its much harder to seize a position they have dug into than it used to be... but the risk of not only losing those 50 points to the enemy, but giving the enemy 50 points for doing so... doesn't appeal to me in the least. And besides, there should be loads of terrain anyways (terrain makes games fun!)!
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Old 09 Jul 2014, 17:31   #9 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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In a bigger points value game, would you suggest a Buffmander AND a Mark'O?
And if I remove the shield generator (Battlesuit team) and guns from the Commander, what should I use those points on? More Firewarriors?
And lastly, should I take 2 4-man teams of Pathfinders or 1 10 man squad?
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Old 10 Jul 2014, 01:44   #10 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Oh! And I've been having HUGE problems with this. If I gave my Battlesuits 2 Missile Pods, would I get to shoot 4 times with each if them? And would I use the first point cost Twice? Or use the second point cost? (I.E. E missile pod costs 15 points, but two of them (twin linked?) costs 20 points. If I wanted 4 shots, then would I pay the first cost twice (30 Points) or the second cost (20 points).
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