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My Guide to Tau for the greater good...
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Old 15 Dec 2004, 19:55   #1 (permalink)
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Shas'El
 
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Default My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

I've been saving up my energy for a nice big post on tau tactics.....i have only been playing tau for a year so my knowledge is admittedly less then a fair deal of Tau players out their but i can still offer my two cents (pennies over here!)

Unit by Unit guide:

HQ

Ethereal - Firstly, 0-1 in an army...just take note of that before you stick two in there! In my opinion there is little risk in taking an ethereal and a big reward to be gained from taking one. With 4th ed rules meaning to shoot at units which aren't the closest requires leadership tests...passing aren't tests is even more important..especially for a Tau army with its greatest asset being firepower and relying on being able to reach any part of the battlefield. Also, these guys cannot be shot at if they are not the closest target to the shooter...stick them behind some cover/scenery and put them right at the back..reaping the rewards....50 points well spent IMO Because its also 50 pts less troops, firepower etc. i only reccomend these in battles of over 1500pts...and it goes without saying no honour blade....if the ethereal is in close combat then you have lost/bad commander/mad (although an honour blade does look nice on a model it has to be said!)

Commander - Shas'o, Shas'el....personally value the shas'o's BS 5 and 4 wounds over the shas'el and will take it anytime...although under 800 or so points i could see reasons to swap. I ususally like to spend big on these guys and keep them safe with the IC rules....missile pod....fusion blaster....plasma rifle and hard wired multitrakcer....hard wired drone controller and gun drones only if i have the points (so rarely!) I also never let these guys join squads...maybe hang around near them but not join them....i want my commander to be able to fire at anything he wants and evade return fire..also i may want hi mfor a daring or specific purpose that only he alone could fulfill. If you are going to attach him to a squad...attach him to a resilient one with jetpacks (either crisis or stealth)...but i wouldn't anyway.

ELITES

Crisis Suits - don't get too hyped up about these guys and think they are the only thing in the tau army that matters....they are important but i only take 2 of these and a commander in a 1500 pt army and work just fine. Customize to suit opponent....fireknife is the most popular choice and very wise to..can negate any normal save and take out small vehicles/tanks too. Crisis suits go down far too easily to massed light weapons fire, and cost a fair bit so this is why they shouldn't be maxed out on. They should be kitted out to take out specific things in your opponents army you should identify before the battle...they should have a purpose and stick to it...be able to take out anything that your firebase cannot, not the other way round. I prefer lone suits because i do not need a target lock..the enemy has to split his fire..they are easier to hide totally in cover...and you can upgrade to a shas'vre for an extra hard point. It goes without saying to hug these guys in cover and pop out to shoot when at all possible.

Stealth Suits - These guys are very valuable in frustrating the enemy and work especially well against horde armies. They can pump out 3 strength 5 shots....then hop back 6" to make sure the opponenet has a more than decent chance of missing them if he decides to shoot at them. A nice squad of 6 in most size armies is great at harassing flanks and taking out small vehicles if needs be....i tend to add two gun drones to the squad fire a team leader and drone controller to add some numbers...a bit more volume or fire...and the risk of pinning.

TROOPS

Fire Warriors - The heart and sole of any Tau army.....at least half should be mounted in devilfish to protect them (it is NOT the tau philosophy to stand, shoot and hope your enemy isn't strong enough to clobber you when hes in cc) and to make best use of their excellent strength 5, rapid fire armament. Dropping those fire warriors 12" from a squad then firing a withering salvo of rapid fire shots will damage any squad....and if fire warriors are deployed behind the fish, even if they don't wipe out the squad they are safe from charge from normal troops. Pulse Carbines or rifles? different topic so ill be quick...i take all rifles...4th ed rules means rifles are better choice...you make your mind up. Always max out of fire warrior squads to make sure you have better volume and numbers....take a shas'ui for better leadership but take into account if you have an ethereal this may not be necessary anyway...as for markerlights and target locks...only take them for static squads...and even then only if you don't have any pathfinders....makes a shas'ui fire warrior cost a hefty 37 points ! In my opinion not worth it but thats me!

Kroot - Usefull in holding up foes in cc for a while....need to be taken in squads of 16+ to be effective seeing as they have no armour save...the shaper isn't worth it...hes not really much better in cc and costs a ridiculous number of points....when you decide to take a squad of kroot (one will probably be enough) don't get too attached to it..its purpose is to die...hold up things and cause a bit of hassle in the end with their fairly nice weapons...but ultimately die in the cause.....they might be better in cc if they had better I seeing as they have 3 attacks on the charge but as it stands they don't!

Devilfish - Very useful little transport...has a high capacity....low cost....decent armour....useful upgrades (decoy launchers will keep it alive, thats the only upgrade id reccommend to keep points down), always mount at least half of your fire warriors in one. Also it goes without saying to move it at least 6" a turn to make use of the only glancing hits rule.

FAST ATTACK

Pathfinders - Either you love them or you don't....rail rifles are basically snipers when guided by markerlights....this is a great use for pathfinders (and the only one in my opinion) seeing as they cant be used where other fast attack units could (i mean they don't have any speed, especially as they all have heavy weapons!). I lay down two 6 man squads and one unit guides antohers railrifles onto a target....make use of the rifles...only aim at targets with 3+ saves (general rule). Markerlights could be used to guide railguns..but broadside ones are Twin linked and a hammerhead hits on a 3+ so no thanks. As for upgrades..the only one i reccomend (strongly) is to upgrade one to a team leader for the leadership and for a hard wired drone controller....adding to the numbers as these squads are ofthen small....and also adding to the fire power...all of it pinning (nice!)

Kroot Hounds - No different to Kroot...1 less point....tiny bit better in combat..no weapon....takes up a fast attack choice unnecessarily IMO, i value the kroot rifles so don't take these....they rarely get to use their special rules seeing as kroot rarely win combat (in my experience at least)...only buy if you really have no better use for points and you have a fast attack slot free

Gun Drone Squadron - Only take 8....as when they drop below 4 they become almost useless....for 2 points more than a fire warrior they have a slightly better BS....shorther range and a pinning weapon with fancier movement.....good to deepstrike as they are cheap enough not to mind if they get wiped out and can also cause they enemy great annoyance ..being able to snipe rear armour of vehicles (best use for these guys) and pin stuff (second best use)...as with all jetpacks use the assault phase move to get in cover if possible. This is another unit i don't expect to be alive at the end of the battle...but don't waste them....lay down fire into weak squads of troops to try and pin them in place. As they have small numbers and not great staying power only take 1 squad and probably not in battles of 700 points or less (but thats really up to you)

HEAVY SUPPORT

Hammerhead -Great tank fullstop Nice front armour....always equip with hammerhead if you only have 1..if you have 2 take an ion cannon...great at taking out the enemies elite troops. I always take burst cannon because i rarely fire my secondary weapon anyway (out of range and i don't bother with target lock often)..however if i do get within 18" of an enemy then 6 strength 5 shots hitting on a 3+ becomes helpful and combined with a railgun submunitions blast can rip through an entire squad. Decoy launchers are essential....never go without them.....also move 6" a turn....12" with a multitrakcer (worth it to give the hammerhead the ability to move far enough each turn to stay out of trouble and make sure a target is clearly in its sights.

Broadsides - One of my favorite units! Lone suits work great here as no need for a target lock..always make sure if you have a squad of 2 or 3 that each suit can fire at different things. The one downside is that these can eat points....therefore i never take plasma rifles...nice but expensive..and also rarely have multitrakcers....i pay 70 points for the railguns...I'm not too bothered about the missiles...seeing as the railguns and the missiles are rarely going to be used at the same unit. (railguns are for BIG things!) Stick broadsides in cover and leave them there....move and lose a turn of railgun fire....for survivability these are the only suits id recommend either getting shield drones or shield generators in order to keep them alive...they will attract a lot of fire because of their bristling weaponry..so sticking them in cover and giving them shield protection does pay off on these suits.

Krootox - simple entry this one...takes up a heavy support choice....instant killed easily.....too high points cost



Phew! there we go....don't miss further installments when ill run through weapons and battlesuit support systems!! (the fun never stops on the tau on line messageboards....) I hope people read this and benefit from the entire extent of my warhammer knowledge!
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Old 15 Dec 2004, 19:59   #2 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW, definitely looking forward to further installments

(stuff the Biology, u don't need to revise)
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Old 15 Dec 2004, 21:10   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

Thats your second mamoth post and you have only posted 110 times!!! that has to be +1 karma. Great advice to all tau players of all standards, well done!
 
Old 15 Dec 2004, 21:14   #4 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

+1? More like +10!
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Old 15 Dec 2004, 22:25   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

Great post.. the karma should be coming along anytime now :P
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Old 15 Dec 2004, 22:28   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

+2 actually.. Nah better make it +3 instead... GREAT WORK!
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Old 16 Dec 2004, 08:06   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

Holy crap. And I thought that my posts were long...
My mouth hangs open in awe, sir. Awe, I say.

And thanks much for opening my eyes on the rules I apparently never read about Kroot hounds and Krootox! I guess I always assumed that the "Attatched Unit" thing meant they all just counted as a Troops choice. Now that I think about it, that would even make sense! Damn! Now I've got all these hounds accumulated, and less reason to use them!
Oh well. At least I don't use a lot of Fast Attack slots.

And again, great job, my friend.
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Old 16 Dec 2004, 09:21   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

I have only one note to the Ethereal, they dont help with the targetinh test as it is Leadership test and Ethereal can only help you with morale checks which is different, so under 4th edition rules they have very little value.

But nice post.
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Old 16 Dec 2004, 16:25   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: My Guide to Tau for the greater good...

thanks for the karma and nice comments...as for the ethereal ill have to read my coex a little more carefully...i thought the whole leadership and morale was all bundled into one thing but called two different things...maybe not.
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