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The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 08:26   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Default The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

I have another controversial topic for all of you

The Tau are a common subject at the GW bunker I go to in Chi-town.
The general consensus is that they are, by far, the most balanced and bug-free army in the game. Hows that for a praise?

Well, the problem is that the surrounding armies are not

Well lets think about it... starting with the most famous comparison

Space marines.
They have the deadly duplicator on their side, make no question about it. (Don't tell me that two of some things is too much, and two of another is too little! I don't care! for I am the Deady Duplicator!). Make no mistake, they ARE the most powerful army. Though beating them is quite a sign of skill when the enemy is of equal or better skill then you. Just keep your temper when they pull some crazy rules out of their rears which makes your army run off the table.

Imperial Guard.
Tanks, your welcome. Armored company, headaches. Demo-Packs, Hilarious. Honestly i would say that the guard are the next-best balanced army... if you don't peer into the nightmares of forgeworld. For when the forgeworld monsters rear their ugly heads, the army turns into a nightmarish beast of Destroyer-tank hunters.

Chaos.
Siren-demon bomb. Yes it can be beaten, but we don't like it reguardless. I will never accept a summoned creature that can move, shoot, AND assault, right out of the warp. When it comes to close combat, they win hands down. With chain axes they get the best of the orcs, and they have power weapons. they also have most of the ranged goodness of space marines.

Orks.
How funny can an army get? You would say that they were too weak.. until they slam head first into their front lines, they chew you up. they have the next codex, so i won't comment.

Eldar.
Bladestorm. a 155 point model that makes your army fearless and a melta weapon at BS5. Not to mention doom, fortune, and other really messed up powers. Bladestorm and fortune just made the eldar the best shooty army since they NEVER suffer perils of the warp (well they do, but wow, look at that 3+ save). Oh and a BS6 character (I know its a typo).

Necrons.
When your basic troop choice with no upgrades has two saves, and can destroy the biggest vehicle in the game, Heck when your cheapest choice, the scarab can do the same thing, there is something wrong.
Don't give me the "phase out" rule. a smart player has almost 100 necron warriors.

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You try and find them in a store...Oh and the incubi. They are Tau's bane.


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Old 08 Mar 2007, 08:36   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Interesting, and you are correct on some things, Tau are probably the most balanced army.

However:


Marines - They are not the most powerful army at all. They are an army of tricks, and once you know how to beat their tricks, you will never lose to them. Of special mention here - Dark Angels - the only balanced marine army I have ever played, they are how marines should have been.

IG: Very good army, balanced. I agree with your assessment, except the Forgeworld part. It is fact that, apart from Super Heavies, Forgeworld stuff is underpowered.

Chaos - Anyone using the Siren Daemon Bomb is not worth playing, they obviously have no interest in a good game, and just want to "pwn" their opponent.

Orks - 10 Year old codex. Nuff said.

Eldar - WTF? Have you read the eldar dex? Bladestorm is a trick, and may work, but you'll likely only pull it off once, on one unit, then the enemy can annihialate your DA's. Avatar - Considering he is meant to knock down Greater Daemons, he's not overpowered at all. He is slow, in a fast army, so he either gets left behind, or the whole army loses its main strength - their speed. Their powers are not messed up at all, they are fluffy and balanced. You have seen marine Libbies, right? :
And BS6 is not a typo - its to show that yes, he is that good. Just to represent it, like AP1 was in third edition.

Necrons - Phase out - a Smart player can use it to his advantage. They are slow, and if you know what you are doing, they can be beaten easily, although I will admit Tau have more trouble against them than any other army.

Dark Eldar? Who are they?
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 12:01   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

my first 40k army was a dark eldar army! my codex is older than the orc one! *bawl*
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 14:06   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Hmm.. everyone at my local game store is of the opinion that Tau are the most overpowered, unbalanced army (though I cant take any credit for that). They are of the opinion of that, so it doesnt necessarilly mean that its the truth. :

What they consider is unbalanced (that I consider unbiased enough to paraphrase):

1) FoF.... not the rapidfiring firewarriors part that bothers them, its the skimmer wall part that annoys them to no end.

2) JSJ. How DARE the Tau suits shoot and then leave line of sight afterwards!!

3) Kroot forest bunkering. Thats just not right.. how unfair that kroot can shoot out without taking any return fire?! And how unbalanced that this 'cant shoot me!' trick appears to be a Tau THEME

4) AP3 everywhere... how its possible to field a nearly entire ap3 army (15 plasma Crisis, 3 plasma Broadsides, IonHead, 9 sniper drones, Fusion Piranhas, Vespid, Seekers... add a few Firewarriors with markerlights for 'fluff&#39

5) Seeker Missiles: how DARE that missile come from across the table to insta-kill my Librarian... that was only minding his own business.. and was a harmless pencil pusher (with glasses) to begin with!!


There are indeed many more, but they edge over the line into nonsense.. these 5 are the key points that others see imbalanced.... I often answer with "Oh, shutup! -Mr Drop Pods no matter what mission rules that never crash and Fear the Darkness! You have NO room to even mention unbalanced!" ;D
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 14:29   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

I see people complaining about marines all the time I still don't get why. My Tau have yet to lose to a space marine army.

Look not all the codexs are 100% balanced but these kind of topics tend to crop up fairly often.

The codex's are close, and while there's room for abuse (Siren daemon bomb) for the most part it's going to be an even fight.

I'm sorry but I'm seriously sick of people saying "Boo hoo, Tau are weak"

They're not, the Tau army is perfectly capable of making some truly brutal and game winning lists.

That said the marine codex, chaos codex or just about any codex can make a truly punishing army.

Some rely more on tricks and surprises, others on synergy and tactics. It's all down to personal preference. At the end of the day though 40k is NOT rock paper scissors.
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 16:22   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

marines: the only true flaw is the ability to max out on autocannons. now, i've never had this bother me personally, but a lot of people find this lot of redning shots a turn bad. Dark Angels are very far from broken. combat squads rules really limits them. no 600pts of 6 las/plas squads of 100points each. and marines are going this way, with the exception of the space wolves.

necrons: tau are the only army that gets headaches with these guys. most other armies can cleave through them in assault, or rain ordnance death on them until they go away. necrons can very easily be beaten.

imperial guard. drop troops, improved comms and close order drill rules allow abuse when brought together. pay for squads deepstriking, pay forfree ld and int boost and i.comms only works when on the table, and not in reserves. otherwise, guard are fine and dandy.

orks. *laughs*

eldar. they've been severely reined in. seer councils of death are no longer monsters, starcannons no longer ap3, no CSM and everything has taken a price hike if it was "too" good last time. they're balanced.

dark eldar. brutal army, but very very fragile. balanced.

tau: impossible to break. even my 3 hammerheads in 1000pts is far from broken, and plenty well designed lists can take it on.

chaos: the currently most broken list in the game. siren bomb, iron warriors rules, obliterators, cheap veteran upgrades, lords of lunacy and so forth. this really is the only codex that desperately needs reining in. it'll come. there is work being done on codex CSM or so i'm led to believe-rumours on warseer etc.

witch hunters and daemonhunters are solid and balanced. nothing severely overpowered.

one codex is overdone, the rest are solid.
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 21:26   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Daemonhunters are unbalanced. Low model count isn't a weakness with an army like this:

1. Shrouding. It has been wholly responsible for losing me games before, and the only way to reduce its effectiveness is to get closer, which brings us to this next point:
2. Force Halberds. The basic Grey Knight strikes with the strength of a Heroic Senior Officer's powerfist. At Initiative. Broken.
3. Psycannons. SEE: An excuse to make an Assault heavy bolter. Oh, and they ignore invulnerable saves. Somehow, being able to ignore the daemonic protection makes it able to ignore my assassin's reflexes, and my Farseer's rune armour... Guess they're really daemonic, and I never realized. :
4. Orbital Strike. A weapon that is literally untouchable. Nobody fields anything that is untouchable. Not even the Sisters of Battle can accomplish this with their Faith points...
5. Fearless. The entire army has this. ATSKNF is one thing. This is utterly broken.

Close combat armies suffer from a lack of shooting capability. So the Grey Knights limit the effective range of your weapons, forcing you to engage on their terms, where they win without contest. Almost no skill is required to achieve this. The army just does it for you, which is why a n00b Daemonhunter player was able to defeat most of my club the first time he played! >

Now I suppose that if I just cheesed out a Space Marine army with as many plasma guns and meltaguns as possible, I could beat him at shooting. But where's the fun in that? :
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 21:43   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord-General Thunder
Daemonhunters are unbalanced. Low model count isn't a weakness with an army like this
Do you play Daemonhunters? No. I do, and I must say they are probably underpowered.
Low model count DOES make those special rules up. Have you seen the price of a Grey Knight?

1) Shrouding. It really isn't that good at all; sure, maybe it'll work 1-2 times per game, but really...not a big deal.
2) Yeah, Nemesis Force Weapons are really good. Just look at Grey Knights' price.
3) They cost as much as your already very expensive Grey Knight (doubling his price!)
4) Not that good at all. You have to designate a target before the game even starts, and it is random when it will be fired. What are the chances of you hitting someone? Sure, if you do it's great, but I hardly ever use these because they're so unpredictable.
5) The entire army does not have this. Grey Knights do. And look at their price.


Basically, all I can say to you is that price does matter, and being outnumbered in every game is really actually quite a big deal. Everyone keeps whining that "Daemonhunters are so overpowered!!!" but they only seem so on paper. Sure, WS 5 is great and all, but for the amount of points you're spending on each model?
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Old 08 Mar 2007, 22:05   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Daemon Hunters are seriously underpowered. My group has two pure DH players. I've never seen either win a game. Neither has had a model on the board at the end of the game when I've played them with my Tau. Shrouding's average sight range is 31 inches. That's plenty. I can take an ionhead for under the cost of a 5 man squad of Daemon Hunters and probably kill that squad in two turns, three with a bad shrouding roll.

Guard- pretty much balanced. Forgeworld is pretty much all underpowered except for a few moron bits like incendiary shells. Slightly below average in power.

Eldar- As evil as Harliquins and fortuned Wraithbone walls are, they are quite beatable. Slightly above average in power.

Orks- Feral orks are just aweful when you spam out of madboyz (7pt str.5 fearless orks with minor negatives!) KoS is competitive, but I've found normal codex Orks to be a bit more underpowered then Guard.

Marines- I have little trouble with them most of the time. Unless people deliberatly abuse them they are pretty balanced.

Witch Hunters- Sisters are godly in a close range firefight and Exorcists are downright nasty, but they require substancial skill to do well with. I've found them balanced.

Dark Eldar- Haven't played a DE army in a long time, can't say.

Nids- I personally hate Godzilla 'nids because of the gross unfluffiness, but they are otherwise pretty balanced.

Chaos- The only ones I think are genuinely overpowered. Infiltrating Speed Lords are death to so many armies. I've watch a Khorne Daemon Prince rip through an entire pure Grey Knight army pretty much alone. They have a lot of options that are truly abusive, especially with daemons.

Necrons- As much trouble as my Tau have with them, they are beatable. They have several really useless units and a handful of good ones, making for a really predictable army.
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Old 09 Mar 2007, 01:37   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: The Tau: A Balanced Army in a World Of Unbalance

Grogalmighty - that comparison is probably one of the worst-written, most ill-informed things I've ever read.

Quote:
Space marines.
They have the deadly duplicator on their side, make no question about it. (Don't tell me that two of some things is too much, and two of another is too little! I don't care! for I am the Deady Duplicator!). Make no mistake, they ARE the most powerful army. Though beating them is quite a sign of skill when the enemy is of equal or better skill then you. Just keep your temper when they pull some crazy rules out of their rears which makes your army run off the table.
Wrong. They can be outpowered in every area if they try to balance, or outpowered in their chosen area if they specialize. You can pull off some beardy crap with min-maxing and las-plas, but Marines actually have a balanced list.

Quote:
Imperial Guard.
Tanks, your welcome. Armored company, headaches. Demo-Packs, Hilarious. Honestly i would say that the guard are the next-best balanced army... if you don't peer into the nightmares of forgeworld. For when the forgeworld monsters rear their ugly heads, the army turns into a nightmarish beast of Destroyer-tank hunters.
Guard can be played as a well-rounded force. They can be played as a nightmarishly beardy melta/plas Deep Strike army. They can do a lot of things, and their balance is highly variable. A well-made Guard army is balanced, though.

Quote:
Chaos.
Siren-demon bomb. Yes it can be beaten, but we don't like it reguardless. I will never accept a summoned creature that can move, shoot, AND assault, right out of the warp. When it comes to close combat, they win hands down. With chain axes they get the best of the orcs, and they have power weapons. they also have most of the ranged goodness of space marines.
Arguably the most powerfull army out there. Anything I can do with Codex Astares, I can probably do better with Chaos. Except for Land Speeders.

Quote:
Orks.
How funny can an army get? You would say that they were too weak.. until they slam head first into their front lines, they chew you up. they have the next codex, so i won't comment.
Possibly the most balanced army out there. If you have problems with them in assault, it's not because the Orks are overpowered (know how hard it is to rack up MEq kills with S3?), its because you're a playing the single worst close-combat army in the game.

Quote:
Eldar.
Bladestorm. a 155 point model that makes your army fearless and a melta weapon at BS5. Not to mention doom, fortune, and other really messed up powers. Bladestorm and fortune just made the eldar the best shooty army since they NEVER suffer perils of the warp (well they do, but wow, look at that 3+ save). Oh and a BS6 character (I know its a typo).
Spamming bolter fire. An expensive and eminently targettable model that is useless outside assault. Psychic powers that are fluffy, effective, and often a cruch of the army. Don't complain about the Ghosthelm, if you want to talk fluff terms, a Farseer might well be imune entirely to Perils. As for BS6 and BS7, it's probably not a typo, given that it occurs over a dozen times in the Codex. Likely it's just setting up for Fifth Edition and a return of shooting modifiers.

I suppose you're blissfull ignorance caused you to miss out on the premium cost (and faily low effect) of Eldar's long range anti-tank, the price hikes on some wargear, and the nerfing of the starcannon.

Quote:
Necrons.
When your basic troop choice with no upgrades has two saves, and can destroy the biggest vehicle in the game, Heck when your cheapest choice, the scarab can do the same thing, there is something wrong.
Don't give me the "phase out" rule. a smart player has almost 100 necron warriors.
Necrons are unbalanced? Wow, you're finally talking some sense. Except for the last line. 100 warriors? That comes to a princely 1800 points, will you be paying in cash, cheque, charge, genuine anti-tank potential, mobility, or close combat survivability?

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You try and find them in a store...Oh and the incubi. They are Tau's bane.
Blindingly fast and destructive, but suffering from cripplingly low durability and awefull survivability after the blitzkrieg first round of assault.
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