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Scenery that's good for Tau
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Old 11 Oct 2006, 21:50   #1 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Scenery that's good for Tau

People often say that shooty armies benefit from low amounts of scenery. This is only true depending on the kind of scenery that is being used. I try to build a balanced set, but I can't help noticing that some scenery really benefits the Tau.

Here are some of the things I have found useful, and some that I mean to make:

Marshes/Bogs/Quicksand, which area size 1 area terrain. They slow advancing enemies, and can even be dangerous, but all units can shoot straight over them without hindrance. Skimmers can cross them as though they were not there without worrying about becoming more visible. If narrow in places, jet packs can leap them too. A small cover save is also granted.

Rivers are similar, but have a much greater span. Tau skimmers can come and go as they please across rivers. If wide enough, they can even be impassible.

Slope-roofed Buildings that are impassible. Although this could be a problem for you deep strikers, it is a big problem for their deep strikers, so put your broadsides, ethereals, pathfinders among these.

Woods – Enough said, but why not make some size 2 regions of dense foliage, that does not prevent tanks from firing over the top?

Rubble, preferably size 2. You can put broadsides in this and if more than six inches back the only thing that can shoot them is monsters and tanks. Meanwhile they can shoot monsters and tanks without worrying about other enemies. Their SMS can still target anybody.

Low Hills/mounds which don't fully block line of sight. Fire warriors can line up behind these and if touching, they get an invulnerable save but none of their targets do. Anyone assaulting across the mound gets to attack last.

Fences and hedges work in a similar way to low hills.

Flat-roofed tall buildings not only give somewhere for you tanks to hide first turn, but vespid and skimmers can reach the top of them and deploy for shooting while few assaulters will be able to climb up.

There are no doubt many more. The point is, you can easily make up the 25% recommended amount of scenery without having to hinder your shooting potential at all. There are a lot of terrain features that really benefit the Tau.

All this was just off the top of my head, based on what I have in my terrain set or am building at the moment, but I bet other people have more ideas. What else can you think of that is tactically useful terrain for a Tau, or other shooty, army?

Best,
Gram
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Old 11 Oct 2006, 23:53   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Walls and defensive structures. They don't block fire lanes but they form a great place to stick a unit of static Fire Warriors.
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 00:09   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Good assessment! Nice and simple. I'm going to have to print this . . . .
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 00:16   #4 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Tau suck in CC, so as one of the balancing factors they are good at using terrain to their advantage. It is a teaching of Sun Tzu who is basically Puretide.
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 00:46   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

nice and high towers should do the trick. you can deploy your FWs or Crisis on top of these and then there is heaps less objects that can actually block your LOS.
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 08:31   #6 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khanaris
Walls and defensive structures. They don't block fire lanes but they form a great place to stick a unit of static Fire Warriors.
Yes, I forgot walls. Even better than hedges and fences, same effect but a much better inv. save. I left out bunkers and so forth as I haven't tried them, and Tau are supposed to take a dim view of getting entrenched, but something defensive that would still allow for rapid pick-ups by devilfish would probably be effective.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TauVa KoVash
nice and high towers should do the trick. you can deploy your FWs or Crisis on top of these and then there is heaps less objects that can actually block your LOS.
Good point. This is kind of like my "flat, tall buildings." I forgot to mention that the skimmers can offload firewarriors while they are up there. Better keep them save though, or there might be no way back down, unless you make up some rules for stairs or a lift. But this makes it a little less defensible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vyrion
Good assessment! Nice and simple. I'm going to have to print this . . . .
Very glad you like it. It's not a complete appraisal, just some initial thoughts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malcaor
Tau suck in CC, so as one of the balancing factors they are good at using terrain to their advantage. It is a teaching of Sun Tzu who is basically Puretide.
He was the Art of War chap, or perhaps chap is the wrong word for a warlord

Keep it coming, if I can get a definitive list together I'll type it up and post it.

Best,
Gram
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 13:13   #7 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Buildings! Buildings!

The more of them on the board the better I do it seems. I find Tau excel in a terrain rich environment with lots of size 3 terrain for them to hide behind before striking their opponents (and then jumping away again!)

Cities of Death is perfect for Tau.

Also nice large sections of woods are always a nice thing to have when Kroot are around, but I suppose that's kind of obvious.
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 16:51   #8 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

This is at odds with many people's conceptions, and mine. Obviously jetpacks do benefit from a lot of total cover.

But when fighting very assaulty armies, not having clean line of sight can be a disaster, especially if they are fast, like dark eldar or 'nids.

So I try to provide a decent mixture of terrain.

I've yet to play cities of death, but when I do, the tactics will change and a different choice of weapons will need to be brought along, more SMS, flamers, the Airbursting Frag. Projector, and more carbines.

So this is an interesting insight, to find some players who like nothing better than terrain that blocks those clear shots for Ion, Rail and pulse weapons.

Thanks for the reply.

Any more, anyone?

Best,
Gram
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 17:01   #9 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Heya,

Heavy terrain boards can limit a Tau force and require it to be mobile and short range based; it also inevitably takes at trend towards mechanized, or if it's not, lends itself towards being assault-vulnerable. That said, I love terrain heavy boards. It makes you have to really think about what you're doing. You're not good at assaulting, you're shooting is limited. So you're left with making critical choices--or having no options. Makes it more exciting; your opponent is probably limited in some fashion too.

Anyhow, my favorite terrain type is: Area Terrain. Size 2 generally, and some Size 1 & 3 sometimes just for variation. Area Terrain is so much more fun and useful to me than normal terrain that is size 3. In fact, I really don't like size 3 terrain. It just puts a big block in front of our shooting and I don't want to load up on SMS just for that situation. The area terrain generally slows down enemies and is attractive for cover, for both players. Generally, shooting isn't all that hindered, by everyone has a 5+ chance usually to take it like a trooper. I still like having some Size 3 mixed in there, just to have some changes where sight isn't going to be had, but I don't want a board covered in it. Games where you just move, move, move and nothing happens just aren't that fun (unless you're an assault force with a prize at the end of that non-stop moving).

Good idea for a thread though.
Maybe go back and add some tactical `use' of those Terrain types and why they're so practical?

Cheers!
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Old 12 Oct 2006, 17:34   #10 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: Scenery that's good for Tau

Great, nice one!

I want to expand on the topic, and will do now that I've got a taste of people's reactions. The main gist of my initial post is that not all terrain is straight up and down, sky-scraper high, impassible. And neither is it all woods. There are such things as low-level impassible terrain peices, such as rivers, dangerous ground that can be fired over, vantage points, defensive positions.

I completely agree that size 2 area terrain is very useful, in particular because it shields small troops while letting big guns shoot straight over the top. I need to build some more rubble, though I have some size 2 woods.

Another thing I have been thinking about is terrain that is a specific width, to maximise the advantage that crisis suits and kroot already have. This means something different for each of them, but it is worth thinking carefully when you build a piece, before you slap paint and glue everywhere.

I'll get my thinking cap on, and see how I might elaborate on my initial post.

Best,
Gram
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