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Tactica: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 09:40   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Tactica: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

In a recent thread, players brought up various tactics for use against the deathless menace. It was informative, with standard tactics including Ion Heads and Sniper Drones, with Broadsides for potential Monoliths.

I would like to propose that the XV88 Battlesuit is better suited than a Sniper Drone team in fighting Necrons of all types, thanks to its twin-linked weapon and denial of the "We'll Be Back" roll.


Part 1: Mathhammer
A) A single unupgraded XV88 Battlesuit costs 10 points less than a single Sniper Drone Team, but has the exact same chance of killing a Necron Warrior (toughness 4) if the Spotter's marklight misses (or is designated for another target, etc.)
- Broadside w/o Targetting Array: 75% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, no WBB = 62.5% chance to kill a Necron Warrior
- Sniper Drone Team w/o Markerlight: 3 x (50% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, WWB halves success) = 3 x (20.8%) = 62.5% chance to kill a Necron Warrior

B) A XV88 upgraded with a Targetting Array costs the same as a Sniper Drone Team, but has a ~12% less chance of killing a Necron Warrior.
- Broadside w/ Targetting Array: 88.9% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, no WBB = 71.4% chance to kill a Necron Warrior
- Sniper Drone Team w/ Markerlight: 3 x (66.7% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, WWB halves success) = 3 x (27.8%) = 83.3% chance to kill a Necron Warrior

C) When facing Necrons of Toughness 5 (Necron Lord, Immortal, Destroyer, Heavy Destroyer), an unupgraded VX88 has a 12.5% better chance of scoring a kill.
- Broadside w/o Targetting Array: 75% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, no WBB = 62.5% chance to kill a T5 unit
- Sniper Drone Team w/o Markerlight: 3 x (50% chance to hit, 66.7% chance to wound, no armor save, WWB halves success) = 3 x (16.7%) = 50% chance to kill a T5 unit

D) An upgraded XV88 has a ~5% better chance of scoring a kill against T5 Necrons than a Sniper Drone Team utilizing its markerlight.
- Broadside w/ Targetting Array: 88.9% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, no WBB = 71.4% chance to kill a T5 unit
- Sniper Drone Team w/ Markerlight: 3 x (66.7% chance to hit, 66.7% chance to wound, no armor save, WWB halves success) = 3 x (22.2%) = 66.7% chance to kill a T5 unit


Part 2: Analysis
- A Broadside can potentially fair worse than a Sniper Drone Team when dealing with Necron Warriors - but the Sniper Drone's better statistics are dependent on the spotter scoring a Markerlight hit, which has a 33.3% chance of failure. Furthermore, without a Targetting Array, the Broadside is 10 points cheaper than a Sniper Drone Team.
- A Broadside is statistically better than a Sniper Drone Team when dealing with T5 Necrons. Furthermore, its Strength 10 railgun will instantly kill a walking Necron Lord - something sniper drones can never do.
- Broadsides can handle Monoliths.
- If cost is no issue, a 100 point XV88 could fire, at BS4, its railgun and plasma rifle at the same target. While not a popular option, it is an option Sniper Drone teams do not have.
- If a Resurrection Orb is within 6 inches of the Necron in question, the Broadside's chance of success if halved - its statistical success is dependent on denying the "We'll Be Back" save. The Sniper Drone Team suffers no such qualms, as it alway allows "We'll Be Back."


Part 3: In Defense of Sniper Drones
- This is just number crunching. There's a good chance that a Sniper Drone Team will down more than one Necron in a turn. A Broadside does not have that ability.
- Sniper Drone Teams are far more effective than Broadside at dealing with Scarab Swarms. Their rail rifles have sufficient strength to instant kill the multi-wound models, and they have three shots.
- Furthermore, neither Scarabs nor Pariahs are "Necrons." Without the "We'll Be Back" roll, the effectiveness of a sniper drone is doubled.
- They have a stealth field, making return fire difficult. While the railgun has a range of 72", rarely does its long range remove it from harm's way.
- Flexibility. Each sniper drone can fire at a different target. Furthermore, three Sniper Drone Teams can be taken in one Heavy Support slot - that's nine shots that can be fired at different targets, with 3 BS4 markerlights to boot. Yes, three Broadsides can be taken in one team, but if each one is taking a Targetting Array, only one could fire at a different target.
Response: This flexibility is lost when facing the Necrons. Against them, concentrating fire is key. Furthermore, dispersed fire minimizes the positive impact of the teams' markerlights.
- Pinning.
Response: Leadership 10.


Summary: Broadsides are best at killing Necrons when the "We'll Be Back" save can be denied. If a Ressurection Orb is involved, if you can wipe out an entire squad in one turn, or if the unit does not have the "Necron" subtype, then Sniper Drone are far more effective.


Conclusion
I understand how impractical this tactica may sound - it calls for the Broadside to be used in an anti-infantry capacity, firing the most powerful weapon the Tau have at troops. Don't be fooled by the Necron models! Immortals and Pariahs are elites, not "basic troops"! Would you use your railgun to fire at another army's Elite soldiers? Why is this different?
And consider this - if the XV88 can destroy 5 Necrons, it's paid for itself and significantly contributed to a Phase Out. If facing Immortals, it need kill only 3 to equal its point cost. And two Pariahs equal the cost of one Broadside!
The Necrons are notoriously difficult for the Tau to deal with. I hope that this guide offers a useful and unique reevaluation of the standard operating procedure.

Nice interpretation. (+1) - Khanaris
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 13:35   #2 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

This is actually a really good tactica Elliott.
It shows people that there are better/different Heavy support options rather than Ionhead spam for dealing with 'crons.

The point about the PR's is a good one, and also the point 3 SDT's can potentially target 9 different units.
But I'd like to point out that broadsides are not necessary for killing pariahs, as they are not 'necrons' and thus get no WBB anyway, so, if you took SDT's, you should concentrate on them.
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 14:48   #3 (permalink)
Kroot Shaper
 
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

Well written and informative.

Personally, I favor my railhead over an ionhead when dealing with my buddy's 'crons, because that submunition round was quite effective... I would like to see the mathhammer done on that, since I'm sure it was more due to luck than anything else...

Back on topic, yeah, you've definately given me something to consider as I build my army. Thanks!
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 14:52   #4 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

Hmm......... I still personally like Sniper Teams. But all your arguments make logical sense, except this one.

Response: The railgun has a range of 72" - that's twice the range of the Necrons' weapon, and those are only found on Destroyers and Heavy Destroyers.

How often do you play on a board that's 72' long? In addition, a Destroyer team can move and fire all of their weapons, so that will increase their range by another 12'. Which should be more then enough to get accross your standard board from long edge to long edge (which is how most games are played).

A large part of what you've said has been about denying WBB. In my experience, Warriors are either under the protection of a Lord, or so far away that you've got much more dangerous things to shoot at. I personally only ever attempt to deny WBB by destroying entire squads. This is one of the reasons I like Sniper Drones. Much better to unload a whole heap of shots onto the unit, in hopes of wiping it out to a man and denying WBB that way, then taking pot shots at them. That's just in my personal experience.

That said, I do take large amounts of both in my army, so it's kind of a moot point.
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 17:07   #5 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

I've updated the tactica with your comments. Thank you all for the quick responses!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravager Zero
But I'd like to point out that broadsides are not necessary for killing pariahs, as they are not 'necrons' and thus get no WBB anyway, so, if you took SDT's, you should concentrate on them.
Excellent point. I've incorporated that into the tactica, and your comment helped to crystallize a perfect summary of my findings: Broadsides are best at killing Necrons when a "We'll Be Back" save can be denied. If a Resurrection Orb is involved, or if the unit does not have the "Necron" subtype, then Sniper Drone are far more effective.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Commander Lightbringer
Personally, I favor my railhead over an ionhead when dealing with my buddy's 'crons, because that submunition round was quite effective... I would like to see the mathhammer done on that, since I'm sure it was more due to luck than anything else...
The submunitions template has a third the chance of a single sniper drone when attempting to kill a single Necron model; while both weapons have the same Strength, the lower armor piercing value of the submunitions allows for an armor save of 3+. That being said, the submunitions template has the potential to hit many more models.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Faolin
How often do you play on a board that's 72' long? In addition, a Destroyer team can move and fire all of their weapons, so that will increase their range by another 12'.
Excellent point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faolin
A large part of what you've said has been about denying WBB. In my experience, Warriors are either under the protection of a Lord, or so far away that you've got much more dangerous things to shoot at. I personally only ever attempt to deny WBB by destroying entire squads.
Thank you - I had forgotten entirely about this.


The positive response I received has inspired by to add to this tactica and explore the mathematical effectiveness of Ion Heads. Keep your eyes peeled!
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Old 08 Apr 2007, 17:16   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

Very convincing math. While I take broadsides regardless, as my best method to handle a monolith, this is a solid reason to take more of them., and possibly leave my three sniper teams at home.

Good work there!
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Old 29 Jan 2008, 11:26   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyndmyr
Very convincing math.
However the math is wrong:s
When you have multiple chances of a success, you mustn't simply add the chances to get the correct odds.
simple example: You need to roll 4+ and you have 2 dice. Since you have 50% to roll 4+ on a d6 you would seem to have 100% chance to succeed. However you have 75% to roll 4+.

The math from the XV88 are right, and the individual chances from the sniper are also right. However those for the unit of snipers isn't.
For the correct odds you need to study the individual cases:
- Sniper Drone Team w/o Markerlight: (50% chance to hit, 83.3% chance to wound, no armor save, WWB halves success) = 20.8% chance to kill a Necron Warrior
= 79.2% chance to NOT kill a warrior

The chance to miss all 3 = 79.2%^3 = 49.7%
You could simply do 100%-49.7% you get the chance to score at least 1 wound but I'll give the numbers for the chances to score multiple wounds as well.
The chance 1 wound and 2 miss = (first wound) 20.8% * (#2 & #3 miss) 79.2^2 * 3 (there are 3 that can hit, so 3 possible combinations of miss/loss) = 39.1% (to score exactly 1 wound)
The chance 2 wound and 1 miss = (first & second wound) 20.8%^2 * (#3 miss&#39 79.2 * 3 (there are 3 that can hit, so 3 possible combinations of miss/loss) = 10.3% (to score exactly 2 wounds)
The chance to score 3 wounds = 20.8%^3 = 0.9%

Compared to the earlier proposed odds the sniper drone teams score a bit less, though you do have a chance to score multiple wounds.

So here is a small table which shows the chances to score on the targets. (I'm no good with HTML tables, so its more or less pasted from excel, sorry)

#wounds 3 2 1 0 at least 1
vsT4 0.8% 10.3% 39.1% 49.7% 50.3%
vsT4+M 2.1% 16.7% 43.5% 37.6% 62.4%
vsT5 0.5% 7.0% 34.8% 57.8% 42.2%
vsT5+M 1.1% 11.5% 40.3% 47.1% 52.9%


I hope it helps a bit, I'm just new to tau so I'm looking over stuff like this.
Happy gaming,

Fjuri

(it says I shouldn't post here because of it was 6 month ago the last post was made in this thread, so let me know if I don't have to repost it on the main board)
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Old 29 Jan 2008, 15:13   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

Quote:
Originally Posted by Faolin
Response: The railgun has a range of 72" - that's twice the range of the Necrons' weapon, and those are only found on Destroyers and Heavy Destroyers.

How often do you play on a board that's 72' long? In addition, a Destroyer team can move and fire all of their weapons, so that will increase their range by another 12'. Which should be more then enough to get accross your standard board from long edge to long edge (which is how most games are played).
On a side note, standard gaming tables are either 4' x 4' or 6' x 4' ... If you measure corner to corner (diagonally), the distance on a 4x4 table is 67.8" and on the 6x4 is 86.5" (using a^2 + b^2 = c^2). So potentially your opponent can be out of range if you deploy in the corners, and can stay our of range until they are in your deployment zone (providing LoS and you don't move :P).

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Old 31 Jan 2008, 19:44   #9 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: Tactica: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

While it is true a Broadside can instant-kill a Necron Lord, it does raise the question: How many Necron Lords do we see NOT attached to a squad VoD everything? This does suggest that the Broadside's ability is situational and can only capitalize a Necron player's mistakes (ex, forgetting to attach the Lord to a squad or leaving him 6"+ away from another model.)
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Old 31 Jan 2008, 21:44   #10 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: Tactica: Broadsides vs. Sniper Drones as Regards Fighting the Necrons

As long as we're on the tangent about denying WBB: what about combat res? If you can close in on a squad of warriors or immortals with some crisis suits/broadsides/kroot, assault them, and win combat, killed models remain where they fell. Thus, if the enemy squad runs 7" away, the killed models won't get WBB, since they need a model of the same type within 6" to respawn.

Thus, regardless of what you shoot up the necrons with, if you follow up with a focused Close-Combat strike, even rez. orb-ed necrons can be denied WBB.
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