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Old 09 Jan 2005, 14:42   #1 (permalink)
42
Shas'El
 
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Default Know Your Self

thanks to dizzygamer and the people he has quoted from for compiling this tactica

Due to copyright law I am unable to post stat lines.
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Choosing your army

HQ

Commander
Dizzy : The commander is the HQ of choice for fluff nuts, a grizzled veteran he has participated in battles for the Empire for years and thus is awarded the honour of leading the Tau forces in battle.
Commanders come in two flavours 'El and 'O the Shas'El is the cheaper option by a substantial 25pts and thus is of more use in smaller games as those 25poins could buy more valuable troops in lower points games, for your 25pts you get +1 I, A, WS, BS, W and Ld quite an increase but alas only the BS and wound get major use, if youíre running low on troops or want to use your HQ aggressively to take advantage of his High BS for Tank busting weapons the 'El is probably the best bet as you arenít risking that extra 25pts, the 'O however offers no compromise and while getting no better use out of his guns is unparalleled in sootiness, if youíve got 25pts to spare and cant dig some more for another stealth, the commander offers you security in the knowledge that there is a large chance that what he shoots at will die.

42 : Personally, I value the Shas'o's high BS and many wounds over the Shas'el and will take it anytime, although under about 800 points I could see reasons to swap. I usually like to spend lots of points on these guys and keep them safe with the IC rules, missile pod, fusion blaster, plasma rifle, hard-wired multitracker, 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 him for a daring or specific purpose that only he alone could fulfil. If you are going to attach him to a squad, attach him to a resilient one with jetpacks (Either Crisis suits or Stealth suits), but I wouldn't anyway.

Ethereal
Dizzy : The Ethereal is a controversial choice, he offers a great Bonus for those who commonly engage in CC or make large use of Ld tests but is very fragile and if he is taken great care must be taken to protect him as the loss of an ethereal more often than not causes half the Tau army to run. for this reason he is best left alone in under 1850pts as this is the threshold when a large enough portion of the army can be dedicated to ensuring his survival.
the Ethereal in smaller games is and option for those who feel confident that the opponent will not exploit the weakness presented by the Ethereal or who merely cannot afford the extra 35 points to take a Shas'El commander instead.

42 : 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 edition rules (To shoot at units which aren't the closest, you must pass a leadership test) passing those tests is even more important, especially for a Tau army where 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're 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 in my opinion. Despite this, because its 50 pts less troops, firepower etc, I only recommend 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, are a bad commander or mad. (Although an honour blade does look nice on a model it has to be said!)

Body guards
Dizzy : Bodyguards are a controversial choice, they are a lot more expensive than normal crisis suits who can fulfil the same role and indeed offer better protection. the bodyguard requires the commander to join it, this removes his Independent Character (IC) status, this is a large hit to his survivability, a unit of crisis suits perform a better protection role as the IC rule dictates that if a unit is closer to the firing enemy unit than the IC he may not be targeted, thus as long as the commander is behind the crisis team he is unmarketable and will not suffer "spillover" wounds as if he were in a bodyguard.

Elites

Crisis suits
Dizzy : Crisis suits are what covers one of the Main Weaknesses in the Tau list, we have no heavy weapons in Fire Warrior (FW) squads. the crisis can be equipped with a dazzling number of combinations all of which are tailored to a certain foe or it could be equipped to hint light armour or high toughness (T) troops with Twin Linked (TL) Missile Pods (MP) and another system or to hunt heavy armour troops such as Space Marines with TL-Plasma Rifle (PR) and a support system or with Fire knife (PR,MP,MultiTracker(MT) ) for an all-round combination that still maintains an effective rate of fire.
The Crisis suit is Equipped with a Tau jump pack and thus moves 6" in both the movement and assault phases both of which ignore terrain, these can be used to perform "pop up attacks" by which you pop out from behind cover in the movement phase and fire in shooting and move back in assault which allows the Crisis Team to fire with impunity, their packs can also let them speed up the board to flank the enemy or to destroy pesky ordinance or biovores.
No other race has what crisis provide, the ultimate in versatile heavy weapon platforms and it is a real strength of the Tau list.
42 : Don't get too hyped up about these guys and think that they are the only thing in the Tau army that matters, they are important but I only take two of these and a Commander in a 1500 pt army and it works just fine. Customize it to suit your opponent: Fire knife is the most popular choice, and very wise to. It can negate any normal save and take out small vehicles/tanks too.
Unfortunately, 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 opponentís army that you should identify before the battle. Crisis suits should have a purpose and stick to it, be able to take out anything that your firebase cannot, and not the other way round. I prefer lone suits because I don't 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
Dizzy : Stealth Suits infiltrate and have Stealth armour which makes them a very hard to catch unit. they are commonly regarded as the light troop killers of the Tau, with their Burst Cannons (BC)* and jump packs they can perform the pop up attacks of the crisis for less of a cost but are not o adept at other things than harassing flanks and weakening troop units.
many an opponent has been driven Irate by the inability of his troops to hit Stealths and when they do get hit they have a hearty 3+ save to shield them, they provide a cheaper alternative to Crisis to those only interested in massed firepower or a scout unit and harassment squad for those with more tactical purposes in mind.
42 : These guys are very valuable in frustrating the enemy and work especially well against horde armies. They can pump out 3, strength 5 shots and then hop back 6" to make sure the opponent 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 team leader and a drone controller to add some numbers, a bit more volume or fire, and the risk of pinning.

Troops

Fire Warriors
Dizzy : Fire Warriors are the core of the army, they have the same stat line as a guardsman excepting a decrease in WS and A which isnít terribly troubling when the fact that they acquire for this loss the best troop weapon in the game and a health 4+ carapace save. Truly a bargain. they fulfil the firepower role of the Tau force, 12 FW can lay down an hail of 12 S5 shots which will weaken any enemy and when Rapid firing they can unleash 24 Pulse rifle shots, Firepower to be feared.
With the FW two options are presented, to use the Fire warriors for a semi-static firebase and set them up to pepper the enemy with pulse fire with their considerable range (6" more than the standard Bolter) and act as a firebase for the Crisis suits in the army or to use the half squads with Carbines alternative and move around the enemy peppering them with 6 carbines a turn until they die or are pinned and you can stand for a turn and fire all your rifles and carbines, another option is to go mobile with the Devilfish APC
The Devilfish provides a Skimmer armed with a nose mounted BC and a pair of gun drones it adds additional firepower to the squad and with a healthy armour value can also increase survivability to Troop weapons swell as providing a 12" move per turn which can be Augmented by adding a Multi Tracker which will allow it to fire its BC when moving at full speed. the Devilfish, commonly referred to as the " 'Fish"
can be used to simply reposition troops when the enemy closes within unacceptable distances or to move into Rapid Fire range to take full advantage of their firepower. (Commonly called the Fish of Fury, read more in upcoming : Tactica FoF)
42 : 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 he is in close combat) 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? That's a different topic so I'll be quick. I take all rifles. 4th edition rules means rifles are a better choice, you make your mind up. Always max out 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 marker lights and target locks, only take them for static squads, and even then only if you don't have any pathfinders. A Shasíui fire warrior cost a hefty 37 points! In my opinion not worth it but thatís just me.
The Devilfish is aVery useful transporter. It has a high capacity, low cost, decent armour, useful upgrades (Decoy launchers will keep it alive, thatís the only upgrade I'd recommend 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.


Kroot
Dizzy : Despite what may have been said about Kroot before they are an excellent addition to any Tau army, they are one of the most versatile units in the whole army as with a very impressive basic profile sporting features such as 2 attacks when wielding their rifles (which equate to bolters) and the WS and Strength of a Space marine they are indeed Close Combat monsters. with no armour save to speak of (the 6+ that can be bought is negated by almost all weapons and is thus almost worthless) and not exceptional toughness Kroot must rely on every tacticians friend for their survival : Cover. Kroot in cover gain at worst an invulnerable version of their upgradeable save and more often a decent 5+ save providing them with a great deal more resilience. as they are dirt cheap with no upgrades (the available ones are over priced or generally worthless) a squad of 20 basic Kroot will only set you back 140pts, that 140pts buys you 20 wounds, 60 attacks on the charge or 20 bolter shots when firing at full range, an excellent deal for a mere 140 points, add to this impressive collection of abilities the ability to infiltrate ahead of the army (into cover no less) and the Feildcraft special ability which allows them to sit in the middle of a dense wood and fire with impunity or charge out of the wood with no difficult terrain test as well as boosting their Cover save by in jungle terrain they are a force to be reckoned with on a jungle board and simply excellent on a non jungle board.
Kroot can be used to fill a plethora of tactical niches, they can hold objectives that are in cover, can easily sweep enemy units off objectives by virtue of the fact that not many units can absorb 60 attacks that amount to coming from a Space marine, they can sit in cover and pester a unit with 20 bolters which will force the enemy to charge them in cover or be whittled down. they can do all this and more, its up to you how you apply those 60 attacks for 140pts. never turn down a bargain.

42 : Useful in holding up foes in close combat 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. He's not really much better in close combat 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, their 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 close combat if they had better initiative seeing as they have 3 attacks on the charge but as it stands they don't!


Human auxiliaries
theyíre Guardsmen, they shoot.....not quite the equal of the fire warrior as they lack the beautiful pulse rifle but they make excellent cannon fodder. one tactic is to equip a unit of 6 with EMP grenades making them a very effective tank killer if they can make it into range for a mere 56pts.

Fast Attack

Path finders
Dizzy : Pathfinders have problems in 4th edition, add to the fact that they must take a Devilfish the fact that their marker lights are heavy and require them to stay stationary to fire as well as any Rail Rifle upgrades requiring this as well they have rather large problems and are not recommended until a chapter approved article fixes them.
Pathfinders do however have one discernable use, in City fight a Marker lighted Rail gun Sub munitions Blast from a Hammerhead can be devastating to a squad.

42 : Either you love them or you don't. Rail rifles are basically snipers when guided by marker lights, this is a great use for pathfinders (And the only one in my opinion) seeing as they can't 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 another rail rifle onto a target.
Make use of the rifles, only aim at targets with 3+ saves (General rule). Marker lights could be used to guide rail guns, but broadside ones are twin-linked and a Hammerhead hits on a 3+ so no thanks. As for upgrades, the only one I recommend (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 often small, and also adding to the fire power, all of which can pin the enemy. (Nice!)


Drones
Dizzy : Drones arenít the best choice. They are however frequently underestimated and written off.. They suffer from the fact that for 2 points more than a Fire warrior to get what works out to be a .5 better Bs, fancy movement, worse leadership and no option for pulse rifles. they are however quite adept at deep striking behind the lines and popping the rear armour of artillery or other tanks.
42 : Only take 8, because when they drop below 4 they become almost useless. For 2 points more than a fire warrior they have a slightly better BS (Higher BS, but twin-linked weapon), shorter range and a pinning weapon with fancier movement, good to deep-strike as they are cheap enough not to mind if they get wiped out and can also cause their 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 that's really up to you)



Kroot hounds
Dizzy : 1 point less than a Kroot for the loss of the bolter, not the best option but as there are no other viable Fast Attack choices they are a good way to add extra wounds to a Kroot squad, however this can result in the Pack being bigger than the terrain and not all getting a cover save, conclusion, get more Kroot instead if its possible.
42 : No different to Kroot. 1 less point, tiny bit better in combat, no weapon, takes up a fast attack choice unnecessarily in my opinion. I value Kroot rifles on Kroot, 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 them if you really have no better use for points and you have a fast attack slot free.


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Old 09 Jan 2005, 14:44   #2 (permalink)
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Shas'El
 
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Default Re: Tau Tactica

Heavy support

Hammer Head
Dizzy : The Hammerhead Battle tank, the core of the Tau heavy support. Equipped with a rail gun it can put holes in tanks like nothing else and at the same time have the option to fire the Sub munitions Rail gun shot, a devastating pie plate fireable on the move. Death to troops and Tanks alike the Hammerhead (HH) is a force to be feared on the battlefield. With the option to take an Ion cannon instead off the Rail gun it becomes an expert marine killer (although the Sub. shot from the Rail gun is also devastating to large marine mobs).
the choice of Secondary weapons systems is often simple and sometimes complicated, if you have 10pts spare take Smart Missile System (SMS) and if you're tight on points go for the BC.
Choice of the HH's vehicle upgrades is almost elementary, the general configuration is Multitracker(MT) and Decoy Launchers (DL) which provide the ability to fire as a fast vehicle allowing it to keep up with the devilfish squads and Battle suits and apply firepower where needed while allowing you to move over 6"to take advantage of the Ability to only be Glanced and if an immobilised result should be rolled it can be re-rolled thanks to the DL, this makes the HH a very survivable and deadly Battle tank, almost unrivalled in firepower to points ratio.
42 : Great tank full stop. Nice front armour, always equip with Rail guns if you only have 1, if you have 2 take an ion cannon. They're great at taking out the enemyís 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 high strength shots hitting on a 3+ becomes helpful and combined with a rail gun sub munitions blast can rip through an entire squad.
Decoy launchers are essential, never go without them. Also move 6" a turn, 12" with a multi-tracker (It's 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.

Broadside Battle suits
Dizzy : Broadsides (BS) Exell at Tank busting, they do it so well that frequently a squad is without targets on the 2nd or 3rd turn. if your opponent likes his tanks the Broadsides will show him otherwise. Particularly useful against armies like Imperial Guard Armoured Company and Saim Hann with a high tank density.
major weaknesses appear in the BS inability to move and fire, this leads to them being rooted to the spot or wasting firepower, if you feel you can compensate for this disadvantage or are able to bust enough tanks that abandoning them will not result in a net loss of points add these tank hunters to your list, Twin linked versions of the most Able Tank killing weapon in the 40k universe will ensure any tanks end up as Slag.
42 : One of my favourite units! Lone suits work great here as there's 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, they're nice but expensive, and I also rarely have multitracker. I pay 70 points for the rail guns, I'm not too bothered about the missiles, seeing as the rail guns and the missiles are rarely going to be used at the same unit. (Rail guns are for big things!)
Stick broadsides in cover and leave them there. Move them and lose a turn of rail gun fire, for survivability these are the only suits I'd 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
Dizzy : Can only be taken if they are attached to Kroot squads and Cause said squad to lose its main method of survival, Infiltrating into cover. combined with a thoroughly unimpressive gun for their points makes them a bad buy for almost all situations.
42 : Simple entry this one. They take up a heavy support choice, are instantly killed very easily and have a too high points cost.
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Old 09 Jan 2005, 14:45   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Tau Tactica

Weapons

Plasma Rifle (PR)
Dizzy : The AP to negate Marine and Terminator saves is to be cherished, doesnít overheat and is an all-round excellent weapon for frying heavily armoured troops, an insufficient rate of fire for massed infantry armies but it makes up for it against Power Armoured armies.
42 : Ahh I could just take these home and cuddle them all day (don't worry I'm not weird), negating all saves (TERMIES, OBLITERATORS) in particular. Try to use these against troops with 3+ or 2+ saves to get the best out of the weapon, and also go 12" to the enemy, unleash some nasty rapid fire shooting, then pop back again with crisis suits. If your going to depend on these with crisis suits they should be twin linked and are absolutely deadly in rapid-fire range, (3 crisis suits with TLPR, 6 termie killing shots!). Always equip crisis suits with these where possible and you WILL be rewarded. Praise Tau technology!


Missile Pod (MP)
Dizzy : Great weapon, in combination with the PR it can use its high strength to wound heavy toughness armies easily and make this duo a formidable optional against all armies, on its own it provides two shots at high enough strength to easily penetrate most lighter tanks armour and thus is a very wise inclusion in Crisis teams.
42 : I find these excellent aspect warrior killers myself, a decent rate of fire means I will never twin link these guys. My anti armour weapons come from rail guns so missile pods go to high toughness troops, although the AP isn't great against marines, it just works fine against eldar banshees, fire dragons etc. With a very good range they can touch most things in your enemies army and you will be pleased with their effect if the enemies army is right (most are!) Also works great with lightly armoured vehicles that your rail guns would just be overkill on and better saved for bigger target, they make excellent rhino poppers and land speeders/vypers etc. (thanks to dizzygamer for that last sentence!)

Fusion Blaster (FB)
Dizzy : One Shot weapons on Crisis suits donít go down well, the BS of the Crisis teams means you get a* 50% chance of hitting, excellent against armour but only a Commander can pull it off and that requires substantial risk to the expensive Commander, High strength makes it adept at busting tanks but only marginally more than the much longer ranged MP.
42 : Many people will turn these weapons down due to their small range and only one shot. On normal crisis suits I agree, points and hard points are better spent, but for a commander I always take one of these. Not for tanks, rail guns are MADE for that duty, but to take out characters, a high BS on a commander will ensure a hit most of the time and then the strength of the weapon is usually double toughness, (at least for most space marine characters!) so that's instant death for a scary, overpriced and upgraded chaplain and force commander, all for just 12 pts? worth it on a commander only.

Flamers (FL)
Dizzy : Great in city fight, not much else other than against guard or on high terrain density tables. useful as a cheap option to fill the last hard point of a crisis suit With Twin Linked weapons without using something useless like a multitracker only costing one more point than said MT its a bargain.
42 : Good it city fight, I never use this myself as I fear for my crisis suit being charged and I don't play many lightly armoured troops anyway. Too common a weapon to go on a crisis weapon for my liking, but if you play orks/guard/nids then you might find this useful to you, however in my opinion its no surprise why these are the least commonly used crisis weapon!

Burst Cannons (BC)
Dizzy : A Pulse rifle with more shots. not particularly useful on crisis suits as a MP offers comparable rate of fire and higher S and lower AP, Good however on Stealth suits which are recommended over crisis for the armies, which will necessitate using this weapon.
42 : A weapon not to be underestimated, can be carried by both vehicle and battle suits and will causes damage based on its high volume of fire, in my opinion works best with stealth teams, understandably deadly against foes with 5+ armour saves or worse but even against power armour the volume of shots means marines have to fail saves.....have to...! The reduced 18" range isn't too much of a problem because most of the carriers can move back after shooting and are fast enough to stay out of assault. Finally, for the price can be a great cheap weapon to take which can cause problems to even power armour wearers.

Pulse Rifle
Dizzy : High Strength and Range make this the best infantry weapon in the game, never skimp on them as they will deliver you from harm.
42 : The fire warriors standard weapon, in fact they are the only unit, which can carry these! Easily the best standard weapon in the game, outranges most normal troops weapons so with pulse rifles you will always get an advantage if you just let your fire warriors sit back and shoot! (Don't use all of them this way though!) With the 4th edition rules on rapid fire benefiting mechanised fire warrior units (24 shots jumping out of a devilfish, even marines have to fail some save..!) these weapons really come into play. Totally awesome, loving them!


Pulse Carbines
Dizzy : Carbines offer the ability to move and fire at the loss of rapid firing, useful on drones but not really in FW squads as only half may have carbines and the other half must therefore not fire to make use of the Carbines, with the Advent of 4th Ed's Rapid Fire (RF) rules the carbine has been largely replaced in FW squads and the increased use of FoF compounds this.
42 : The standard weapon of the pathfinder and a fire warrior upgrade as well. Basically the same as a rifle yet less range and pinning test. Since in a fire warrior squad and pathfinder squads the number of actual casualties caused by this weapon is going to be few then I do not really rate the fact that it can pin, furthermore I would rather my enemy ran off the table and broke rather then stood still! In third ed rules these would be excellent for mounted fire warrior squads but as already detailed, have no use anymore in static (loss of range) or mobile (loss of volume of shots) fire warrior squads


Smart Missile systems
Dizzy:* Four pulse rifles, less range, no LOS, used best in city fight and on high terrain density tables or in situations where large numbers of antitank may jeopardise the HH's safety.
42 : Good like burst cannons for the volume of fire, a better range and needing no LOS is just a bonus! Only used when stationary (except on a tank that is), if you have the points to buy a multitracker for sides or the SMS for a hammerhead you will notice the difference but to be honest 10pts less for 2 burst cannon on a HH is almost as good, these weapons are nice, but their are cheaper options which do almost as good.


Kroot rifle
Dizzy : A Bolter that doubles as 2 Close Combat Weapons (CCW) sign me up.
42 : This will give most troops their save except gaunts but for a 7pt troop this is a very nice gun, decent strength, decent range, and in rapid fire that's 40 shots on 1 squad? then it also doubles up as an additional close combat weapon? not bad at all for a 7pt troop.

Kroot Gun
Dizzy : A longer ranged RF MP, however it requires the squad of Kroot it is attached to to fire at the same target, thus wasting their shoots as the targets for the Kroot gun usually cant be hurt with the Kroot rifle.
42 : Look at the profile and points cost of a Krootox and you will understand why no one uses this. The weapon is basically a missile pod with a worse rate of fire and because itís not an assault weapon doesn't work well on a unit, which I see as an assault unit. This weapon doesn't merit much of an entry.

Rail gun
Dizzy : One of the best antitank weapons in the game. Makes tanks turn to jelly, if you see a lot of tanks load up on these, if you see lots of infantry get lots of HH with Rail guns as the Sub. Shot is absolutely devastating, and all round perfect gun when mounted on a HH and merely a lethal tank killer on a Broadside.
42 : Rail gun (Solid shot) - In one word (well hyphenated counts!) - anti-armour. All tanks beware the rail gun is made for ripping through armour of any tank. Its range will reach anyone, and all glancing hits will become penetrating also! Used best on broadsides in my opinion, could be 3 tanks dead per turn! (most of my opponents aren't stupid enough to field many tanks against a Tau army!)

Rail gun (Sub munitions aka pie plate) - When all armoured targets are gone the hammerhead should be using this every go. It will kill more marines than an ion cannon per turn and will tear up anything not in power armour or better. Doesn't suffer from scattering as other ordinance weapons so IMO an awesome weapon to cause chaos with

Ion Cannon
Dizzy : These are adept at killing highly armoured or tough units, however a Fire knife team of Crisis are more often than not a better investment.
42 : Great marines killer obviously but also great against any army, almost every army will have some form of elite troop with 3+ saves that will just be knocked out with this baby, will work well with a marker light too to ensure (almost), 2-3 dead marines/wraithgaurd/bikes per turn, if you have more than one hammerhead than this is worth a go.

Rail Rifle
Dizzy : Insert anti Marine here. Excellent weapon. Great for taking out heavily armoured opponents. Problem is it has to be used in a Pathfinder squad, which normally uses pulse carbines and marker lights. This means that one of the two weapons will probably be in a bad place for shooting. Also a target lock is required, so the gun can be used effectively, and it overheats. more often than not I would prefer a Fire knife or TLPR crisis team in place of the exceptionally expensive Pathfinder Squad.
42 : The sniper rifle of the Tau, an awesome weapon on its own and should only be used on troops with 3+ armour saves, anything more or less is a waste on this weapon. The range is such that you should not need to move to get into position, which suits the fact it is heavy and used in conjunction with another heavy weapon (marker light). Take as many of these as you can and set out a particular unit to target with marker lights and rifle shots before the battle (if possible), these will not let you down if used right.

Equipment

Hard Wired Support Systems

Multi Tracker:
Dizzy : Generally the hard point filling alternative is a better option as it costs less but if on a commander this can allow you to take a Shield Generator (SG) as well as having an MT, not recommended for Shas'El as they are best in Fire knife to keep them inexpensive but valuable kit for the 'O.

Target Lock:
Dizzy : depends on squad, e.g. broadsides, team leader has normal kit, and shield generator/drone controller, + HW TL, while the other two broadsides have a Target Lock and drone controller. This configuration allows you to take many drones as well as have your broadside team shoot at 3 different targets in one turn.

Black sun Filter:
Dizzy : useful for night fight. Take as many of these as you can in night fight scenarios if you have the points and the hard points/hard wired spaces.

Drone Controller:
Dizzy : Not recommended in 4th edition as the mixed toughness rules and mixed AS rules make a mess of these, leave them at home until GW gives us Chapter Approved to sort it out.

Tau Vehicle Upgrades

Sensor Spines:
Dizzy : depends on scenario and opponent, e.g. Tyranids (Lictors) or Catachans, and also if minefields are permitted.

Targeting array:
Dizzy : HH come Equipped with them and giving the Devilfish a BS upgrade wont add much to its effectiveness as it has a multishot weapon, use it if you have points to spare but not if they could be spent better on more units or better upgrades.

Multi Tracker:
Dizzy : Essential Upgrade for the HH as it allows it to move more than 6"and still fire its Rail gun, this gives it the Ability to move and take Glancing hits while losing no firepower, on the Devilfish it is somewhat less useful as for a large point upgrade you merely get to fire the BC.

Black sun filter:
Dizzy : when night fight is in play, this is also essential, youíre not limiting the range of your (hammerhead) weapons as much as they would normally be.

Target Lock:
Dizzy : Generally a wasted upgrade on a HH as if youíre firing the Sub. at troops the BC or SMS are going to be fired at the troops. even less use in the FoF (look for the upcoming Tactica : FoF) useful in large point games where you can afford upgrades but in addition to the essential HHY upgrades it makes it too devastating a points loss if one of the HH drops.

Pair of gun drones:
Dizzy : Devilfish come Equipped with it but it can add that little bit of surprise firepower to your HH if you want to convert some cradles.

Flechette Discharger:
Dizzy : Not overly useful as risking a HH in* Tank shock isnít a good use for 160odd points. might be useful for the Devilfish depending on what role you have in mind for it.

Disruption Pod:
Dizzy : Only works at long range, can be useful with a "sniping" HH but generally useless on a Devilfish.

Decoy Launchers:
Dizzy : Excellent upgrade, allowing a reroll of the Immobilised result is gold as Tau tanks should be moving over 6"a turn (the HH needs the MT to do this and still fire) so with both upgrades only a roll of a 6 on the damage table will reliably kill the HH or Devilfish, somewhat comparable to the Eldar Holofeild and Spirit Stones Duo in effect.

Seeker Missiles:
Dizzy : Unlimited Range is priceless but unfortunately Marker lights (ML) are Pricey, with pathfinders being the way they are and the Shas'ui with ML being even more pricey these appear to be lessened in effectiveness.
42 : - If your rail rifle gunners want to take a break and you have 10pts free than these are greater strength rail rifles, use them on tanks which you cannot see or troops which you can instant kill (use high toughness weapons to the best of their ability), also because this is 1 shot, use it on 3+ armour save troops (or tanks) and nothing else, anything else would be a waste of points for what you bought it.

---------------------------------------------

Tau and Close Combat : Dizzy


Question
With the advent of Fourth Edition Close Combat (CC) is no longer the biggest part of the game, in 4th Ed the onus is on Shooting and that we do well. however it should be noted that Tau are very very bad in CC and most losses can in some way be attributed to CC. Kroot admirably cover this weakness and deserve much respect and use for it.

Answer
CC is the Scourge of the Tau, many players avoid it in many different ways. there are 2 main Schools of thinking on the proper way to avoid Assault.
The first dictates that the army should be placed as far away fro the enemy as possible and attempt to whittle the enemy down to the point that when they contact the Tau line they are either wholly destroyed or their squads are weak enough that the sheer outnumbering of the Tau will carry the battle. this Tactics is flawed in many ways as many tactics are and either Results in a Sweeping win or a Crushing loss, very rarely does it land on the close ground.
The second dictates that Movement and speed greater than the opponents will allow the Tau to keep the enemy out of assault range. this tactic has many flaws just as the "firing line" tactic does but its flaws result from player error not the dice gods decisions, the Mobile or "Mecha" Tau force is primarily based around battle suits and the Devilfish, the Devilfish Squad or Fish of Fury as the Tactic is named (see upcoming Tactica :FoF) seeks to drop the FW within 12 of the enemy but behind the Devilfish so that the enemy is not able to charge under the skimmer but the Tau FW can RF under it, next turn the FW embark and race away to safety, a difficult to set up (the models must be precisely placed) but extremely deadly Tactic.
A hybrid of the Two is often the route preferred by most players, it combines the Raw firepower of the Static "firing line" with the ability to apply traumatic firepower with pinpoint accuracy at leisure, making an effective hybrid able to poke holes in opposing strategies and deployment at will or simply manoeuvre the opponent into a corner.

The Fourth option id Kroot, in mobs of 20 these fiendish little monsters put out 60 attacks on the charge essentially from a marine, they however lack a save to speak of and for that reason must be used in the ways detailed under "Kroot" to provide optimum efficiency.

Many thanks to [Mace] and GOD for the Original skeleton I worked off and to 42 for providing his comments as a comparison. I hope this revision for 4th Ed provides all you new players with the information you require and all you experienced veterans confirmation on what you already knew.

EDIt by RJay: Any comments relating to this thread can be placed here, http://forums.tauonline.org/index.php?topic=3745.0, in the Know Yourself discussion topic.... thankyou and goodbye...
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