Tau Empire Codex 2013 | Army Builder Program
Dark Angels Codex 2013
Chaos Daemons Codex 2013
Chaos Space Marines Codex 2012

Warhammer 40k Forum Tau Online

 

Warhammer 40K Forum

Draft - Combat Patrol Tau Tactica
Reply
Old 17 Oct 2007, 15:07   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: London, UK
Posts: 142
Default Draft - Combat Patrol Tau Tactica

Combat Patrol Tau Tactica
Please note I donít claim to be a veteran 40ker. Iím completely open to having this torn to shreds and learning from more experienced players here, so please comment as you see fit. Iíll edit mistakes and add differing opinions to the Tactica if and when they come in. Hopefully, enjoy!

First read the Important Topics sticky :-
http://forums.tauonline.org/index.php?topic=38771.0
Especially the Jump Shoot Jump Tactica. Learn to love it.


1. What the rules mean to us.
The rules Iím working from are found online. I donít have the big rule book to hand so I donít know if there are many changes.
http://uk.games-workshop.com/warhamm...40k40mins1.pdf

Patrols no more than 400 points.
Small point games, in the 400 Ė 500 point range play to our strengths. It is possible to deploy a fully mechanised 400 point army without breaking any of the CP rules. We have relatively cheap troops, meaning we can deploy many squads if we want have a static gun line. I think 500 point combat patrols are optimum, as the extra 100 points allow certain amount of diversity onto of a solid 400 point force.

You must have one Troop choice.
This means as a minimum we have to spend 60 points on troops, getting us 6 Fire Warriors.

You may have one HQ choice, but no more than one.
The only HQ available to us with CP rules is an Ethereal, who at 50 points is too expensive to really work in Combat Patrols. Although his Honorguards have BS 4 without a markerlight hit, itís still an expensive way to gain 3+ to hit.

You may spend remaining points on anything in the Codex.
This rather poorly worded rule doesnít, in my mind, mean you can spend the rest of your points on Sniper Drone Teams for example. You should still keep the Force restrictions in the Codex, so only 3 Teams of Sniper Drones, in one unit.

No character can have more than 2 Wounds.
This stops us taking Ďel or Ďo HQ choices.

No special characters.
As all our special characters have more than 2 wounds, we were blocked from using them anyway.

No 2+ saves.
No Broadsides. If you listen very quietly, you can hear our foes cheering.

No vehicles with a total Armour value greater than 33.
No Railheads, No Ionheads. Yes, that cheering is getting louder. However it does mean we can make a Warfish and use Fish Of Fury. The Devilfish is considered one of the best troop carriers in the game. We can also take Piranha. There are few, if any 13/10/10 vehicles, which means the heaviest armour youíll have to hit is 12. This is extremely important as a Strength 7 missile pod can penetrate it. Beware of Killer Kans & Basilisks though.

You must have a completed, detailed roster and access to the relevant Codex.
Fair enough. I bought a cheap laminator to protect my rosters, given that if youíre playing in a tournament as a lot of CPís seem to be, it wonít get completely destroyed over the course of its use.

Painted models only.
Itís a great incentive to get more things painted or think up an entirely new colour scheme for the combat patrol. Amongst my own Tau I switched from a Red, Black and Yellow colour scheme to Grey, Blue-grey and Black scheme based on WW1 U-boats for my CP force, although I havenít finished it yet, of coarse.

Two further rules are found in the text of the rules.
Most scenario rules are ignored, as we feel that nobody should be deep striking and the like, but you could use infiltrators.
This is a shame as a Deep Striking unit of Gun Drones would really come to the fore if we could and Terminators have a +2 save anyway so arenít available. It does stop things like Raveners though.

When a patrol has taken 50% casualties it must start to take Leadership tests based on the commander's ability at the start of its turn or break from combat and subsequently lose the battle. If neither force breaks then at the end of the session the
patrol inflicting the most damage in points wins.

While on the surface, with our low Ld of 8, assuming you choose an XV8 as a leader, this is bad for us. However, I think that if weíve already lost 50% of our units it means weíre in serious trouble. It is possible, although rather unfluffy to take a Strainleader as force leader and get the ld of 9.
Honestly though, this is a rule to drop in my humble opinion. At 400-500 points the games are quick enough and should be TO THE DEATH!

2. Our available units
First and foremost, break units up as much as possible. It is better to have Monat XV8s, small FW squads and teams of 4 Gun Drones. The reason for this is two fold. First Monat and small squads allow you to hide them better in cover. Ideally your Monats should end in LOS cover every turn and where possible, so should your Gun Drones. The second reason is that it allows you to control deployment. If youíve 2 troops and 3 Gun Drone teams, itís very likely that your foe will have finished deploying his units by the time you get to deploy your elites. That means you can already see fire lines and pin point possible line of sights spots for hidden vehicles. Always try and fill up your FOC chart as much as possible.

Another point for small games is that rolling dice, no matter how small a chance of success is better than not. Itís the tried and trusted Dakka approach. The reason why this is heighten in Combat Patrols is that itís unlikely your foe has many elite/heavy/fast units, so by taking out those couple of bikers, Rhino, Wartruk, etc, you rob them of their major winning pieces. So take configurations that shoot as much as possible.

XV8 Crisis suits
XV8s are the backbone to any Tau army and a CP force is no exception. A Flamer Deathrain at 47 points is possibly the most important unit to field in a CP. The two twin linked 36Ē S 7 shots are enough to damage any vehicle weíre likely to meet. On a 48Ē x 48Ē board, theyíre first turn strike range is 12Ē + 6Ē + 36Ē = 54Ē. Thatís effectively anywhere and the 6Ē move means that even vehicles hidden from sight at deployment can possibly be targeted. In theory, in a 400 point force you could field 7 Flamerains and 6 FW. I argue that you should take a minimum of 2 Deathrain and attach Missile pods to all other configurations you take. The Flamer template in the above configuration is practically useless against anything but Ďnids and possibly Orks, but a BSF is totally useless as you donít have night fights in standard CPs.

In CP, Multi-trackers are bad, because they involve taking non twin linked weapons. Fireknives are a wapping 62 points against the Flamerains 47. Unless you know youíre going to be facing lots of Devastator MEQs, donít do it, trust in Dakka and get extra FWs or GDs.
I think there is an argument for Firestorms (MP BC MT) because of their relatively low cost and high fire power, but they donít add wounds and put your XV8 in the 24Ē danger zone to fully realise their attacks.
Fusion Blasters? Youíll never face armour worthy of their respect.
Shield Drones? No, they cost too much and just end up making you take leadership rolls when they die.
AFP? Hell yes, if youíre playing CoD or Ďnids.
CIB BC MT? Maybe, against GEQ but again youíre facing the 24Ē danger zone and high cost.
Keep your cheap MP armed XV8s at the back, hidden and snipe missiles.

Stealth Suits
You either love Stealth Suits or hate them. If you love them, take only 3 basic suits with burst cannons and DONíT infiltrate close to the enemy, unless your foe foolishly has placed a straggler away from the rest of their force. Stealthís are just too fragile if you keep them cheap enough to use in CP. 9 shots for 3 wounds will make them an easy target of your by now Deathrain hating foe and because of this I donít take them. Theyíll run away easily and Iíd rather have more Gun Drones, who do a similar job, more cheaply.

FireWarriors
Units of 6 Fire Warriors are great in CP. Iíve already mentioned why small squads are better than large in general, but FW have the problem of poor leadership, meaning unless you Bond them, they run away. A Shasíui with a bonding knife is 15 points more than a normal Fire Warrior. Iíd rather take the extra wound and extra shot. If a small squad runs away, well youíve lost 60 points and still have another 6 warriors elsewhere. If a big squad with a bonding knife flees, youíre 135 points down with nothing left to shoot.
Pulse Rifles vs Carbines? Iíd take range and double taps over a small chance of pinning that your Drones should be doing anyway.
Devilfish? Maybe. I personally donít think FoF works wonderfully well in CPs because the Fish is going to be the target of any foe with a S 6 gun as they are unlikely to have any other targets. Yes youíll only be glanced, but a few hits are going to stop you anyway. Spend the 85+ points elsewhere, unless youíre running Piranha, which may get targeted instead.

Kroot
Kroot arenít quite good enough at anything to be brilliant in a CP game. The smallest squad is expensive vs FireWarriors (Iíd rather 7 PR shots than 10 KR ones) and they will lose against most assaulting units. However the Infiltrate ability, if you know forests will be there, is fantastic. Sit the Kroot in Forest and shoot. Anything that comes near, carry on shooting until they assault and use the cover saves to protect you. Iíve never tried it, but a large Kroot Squad, with Hounds will probably make a good magnet for infantry fire and will survive long enough to offer some resistance if the get into close combat.
Shapers? Too many points but as they arenít a character they are the only unit you could field with more than 3 wounds.

Gun Drones
I *heart* Gun Drones. There, Iíve said it. In every single game they have either be overlooked or drawn more attention than they deserve. They hit better and move faster than Carbine Fire Warriors and attack faster than Kroot in CC because of their high I. Small units of 4-5 Gun Drones can hide easily behind LOS terrain. They jump shoot jump as well as Stealth units. They are excellent at providing priority test screens. Paint cross hairs on them! Their S 5 guns take down Rhinos, Wartruks and a variety nasties because your foe has been ignoring them as the jump from rock to rock along an empty flank. All for a minimum of 48 points. I take as many small squads as I can field, usually the full 3.

Piranha
Because CP rarely have much armour and donít have objectives, Piranha arenít needed in their usual rolls. However as a way of deploying 5 S 5 shots at decent range and then discharging the Gun Drones as a separate squad, a 65 point Piranha + Decoy Launcher has some merit. Iíd still rather fill the fast slots with Gun Drones.
Fusion Blaster? No, nothing whatsoever needs that Strength hit.

Vespids
Too expensive versus Sniper Drone teams for MEQ killers. The only advantage is their high Ld due to the Strainleader, but Iíd rather just not get shot at because Iím at the other end of the board, sitting behind a Stealth Field. Again, taking up a valuable FA slot, I think these anti-MEQ specialists donít fire often enough to warrant inclusion.

Patherfinders
No, they are too much for not enough. While Markerlights and Rail Rifles are good, having to take the Devilfish pushes them out of the price point we should be prepared to go to.

Sniper Drone Teams
I was actually very unsure about these until I tried them. It turns out that the S 6 shot is good for glancing any vehicle youíll meet and they scare the hell out of any Marines you face. Add the fact that they have a networked Markerlight, means that your rapid firing squad of Fire Warriors is hitting on 3ís along with all the other nice tricks MLs can perform. Sticking them in an obvious fire lane makes them big fat deployment target, but with the Stealth Field up, youíre likely to enjoy peace and quiet for awhile anyway. They are a high cost per shot/wound squad, but for once I think they are worth it because of their high survivability and anti vehicle/ MEQ powers. Only one is necessary though.

With this in mind, here is a sample 400 pt CP

Monat XV8 Flamerain [TL MP, FL]
Monat XV8 Flamerain [TL MP, FL]
7 Fire Warriors with PR
6 Fire Warriors with PR
4 Gun Drones
4 Gun Drones
1 Sniper Drone Team.
Shots : 4x S7, 3x S6, 21x S5 = 28.
Wounds : 29

3. General tactics

Good deployment is essential. Never have your elites in LOS of anything. They can jump out and attack anyway. Ensure you have cheaper units in front of more expensive ones, giving you the chance of a failed target priority test. Ensure the maximum number of hits have a target on turn 1. Aim to be able to shoot Transports immediately. Donít be afraid of not moving forward in a turn if you think youíll remain out of shooting range in your foes turn. If you are using Gun Drones as a decoy, make a big fuss of them. If you are sneaking them into an important position, pretend the move is an afterthought.

Against MEQ armies, youíre going to face a specialised force as their units are too expensive to be a hybrid army. MEQ armies suffer in low point games because of the high cost per shot they pay.

Against Foot Sloggers MEQs, you should be able to out range them with Snipers and Missiles, following up with pulse rifles and finally Gun Drones. Sit back and deny them shots at you.
Against Fast Attackers MEQs, target troop transports first. No matter how intimidating Bikes can be, you can deploy them with cheap Gun Drones, while you take out the Berserker loaded Rhino behind them because those Marines will wipe out youíre entire force.
Against Heavy Weapons MEQs, you can Jump Shoot Jump and they canít. Hide everything you can and force them to approach while you snipe. Then rush them with Gun Drones.

Against GEQ and Orks youíll have more trouble, as they have a similar number of shots to you, with varied abilities. Remember that you have better range and avoid close combat at all costs.

Against Foot Sloggers you should use weight of fire to win. Ensure every single point in your army is geared to shooting, at long range.
Against Fast Attackers take as many missiles as you can. You can actually fire and run away with XV8 suits. Cheap Fast Attack armies like Ork Speed Freaks are extremely difficult to counter and you have to control their deployment to allow you enough space on the board to JSJ and FoF. Counter FA armies with fully mech armies.
Against Heavy Weapons you need lots of Missiles and Gun Drones. Being able to shoot and then hide against non-moving units is very effective.
Against hybrid forces, choose transports then fast attackers then heavy weapons then infantry as targets. When you come across large armies, try and snipe low Ld small units who may run away and concentrate your main fire on the bigger units.


I hope that this proves interesting and debate worthy to experienced players and a point of reference to those coming across Combat Patrol games for the first time. Thanks,

Pond823
__________________
No Gods! No Tyrants!
pond823 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17 Oct 2007, 16:05   #2 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 11
Default Re: Draft - Combat Patrol Tau Tactica

Combat Patrol is a fun way to play, however it can not be approached the same way a list is made in the larger point games. The key to combat patrol is finding the unit(s) in the particular army that are the strongest for the ruleset and getting as many in as possible.

In larger point games, tau is fun becuase of the need for the untire army to work together. In combat patrol the focus is more on the suits JSJing around for the victory. Each race has a few key units(or as some call "CHEESE") that they field. For tau it is definately suits as everything else is somewhat of a liablity. Space marines have torandos & bikes, necrons have destroyers, eldar have vypers etc. Yes every race must field the compulsary troops but for a race such as tau we try to keep it at a bare minimum so that we can optimize our suits.

Now this only applies to the more competitive environment, trying exploit the rules to make "cheese". For more friendly games the tactica is quite useful for giving a new player an understanding of how to use the various tau units in this smaller format. Which could serve as great "training" using combat patrol rules for the larger point games. Which is the heart of why I believe the format was created, to play small and fast 40k with newcomers. What it has turned into(competitively speaking) is a tactical skirmish with key units(cheese).

Personally I like both versions, but I thing I should mention is that it is no fun to mix them. Sometimes I think that the competitive "power gamers" feel that the way they play is the ONLY way(cheesy) to play, which can be very annoying to the newcomer. I love to powerplay with suits but I can also play a more friendly game taking units that simulate a smaller scale tau army, focussing more on the basic troops with supporting units from the other slots, and not maxing out elites and/or fast attack with the compulsary troop filler. After playing it a while you can begin to see the difference in the list. It kind of burns me when you get a person that has played the cheese circuit wanting to field their tournament winning CP list against someone that just started and all they have is the battleforce for their army. Usually their list is dead before they get a chance to use them? All the noob learns is what the good units are in CP and not how to play 40K.
nerdHammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17 Oct 2007, 16:24   #3 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: London, UK
Posts: 142
Default Re: Draft - Combat Patrol Tau Tactica

Quote:
Originally Posted by nerdHammer
Combat Patrol is a fun way to play, however it can not be approached the same way a list is made in the larger point games. The key to combat patrol is finding the unit(s) in the particular army that are the strongest for the ruleset and getting as many in as possible.

In larger point games, tau is fun becuase of the need for the untire army to work together. In combat patrol the focus is more on the suits JSJing around for the victory. Each race has a few key units(or as some call "CHEESE") that they field. For tau it is definately suits as everything else is somewhat of a liablity. Space marines have torandos & bikes, necrons have destroyers, eldar have vypers etc. Yes every race must field the compulsary troops but for a race such as tau we try to keep it at a bare minimum so that we can optimize our suits.

Now this only applies to the more competitive environment, trying exploit the rules to make "cheese". For more friendly games the tactica is quite useful for giving a new player an understanding of how to use the various tau units in this smaller format. Which could serve as great "training" using combat patrol rules for the larger point games. Which is the heart of why I believe the format was created, to play small and fast 40k with newcomers. What it has turned into(competitively speaking) is a tactical skirmish with key units(cheese).

Personally I like both versions, but I thing I should mention is that it is no fun to mix them. Sometimes I think that the competitive "power gamers" feel that the way they play is the ONLY way(cheesy) to play, which can be very annoying to the newcomer. I love to powerplay with suits but I can also play a more friendly game taking units that simulate a smaller scale tau army, focussing more on the basic troops with supporting units from the other slots, and not maxing out elites and/or fast attack with the compulsary troop filler. After playing it a while you can begin to see the difference in the list. It kind of burns me when you get a person that has played the cheese circuit wanting to field their tournament winning CP list against someone that just started and all they have is the battleforce for their army. Usually their list is dead before they get a chance to use them? All the noob learns is what the good units are in CP and not how to play 40K.
I completely agree with your argument that it is possible to build a mighty cheese CP force out of Tau or any other force and as you identify, this isn't a guide on how to do that. It's more a guide to enjoying CP games competitively. I've seen too many first time CP lists that are going to get hammered by even non cheesey lists because they've used 2 shield drones on Monats or fully decked out FW squads with shiny Warfishes. I don't want to stop someone from choosing a themed, fun CP list but I do want new players to at least have a some fun against a vet.

I think I'll stick a note on it stating "it's a guide to enjoying CP games competitively, not to make them cheesey". How does that sound?

__________________
No Gods! No Tyrants!
pond823 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17 Oct 2007, 19:17   #4 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 11
Default Re: Draft - Combat Patrol Tau Tactica

Sounds good. I know we hit a grey area sometimes when it comes to draw up a list thats competitive yet not cheesy. Definately a point you would want to get across is maybe how to not create a losing list, or something along those lines. Covering some of the does and dont's.
nerdHammer is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Final Draft: 400pt Combat Partol The Canadian Snowbird Imperial Guard Army Lists 1 22 Dec 2006 19:23
Dark Eldar Tactica Final Draft by Alcibiates alcibiates Dark Eldar 6 20 Jun 2006 06:45
combat patrol 500 points Catachan 2nd armour supported patrol Jeff Imperial Guard Army Lists 1 01 Jun 2006 11:04
DE Tactica Draft Is here! alcibiates Dark Eldar 31 06 Mar 2006 21:05
Tau Combat Patrol Primer (draft version - please read and comment) torgoch Tau 10 06 Dec 2005 06:39