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squad selection and tictacs
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 03:24   #1 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Default squad selection and tictacs

I'm pretty new to warhammer, I've played a few games against my mate and his space wolves up to now, but thats about it. It was him that got me into it, I said I wanted a shooty army so I could concentrate on battlefield tactics, non of this magic rubbish etc etc.. and so my army is TAU.

I reckon the games I've won against his Spave Wolves were down to his TERRIBLE luck with the dice (which always made me laugh as he threw a tantrum ) and my incredilble luck with the dice and not down to actual proper squad selection or tactics. I've read the tactics section to the site and am raring to put them into action, but as I read all the posts I realise that I have no idea what to take into consideration when selecting what to take into battle and what to arm them with.

I've noticed a lot of people on here say "hmm I'm a little confused why you're taking such and such with so and so when you could do this" when looking at other peoples army list, and it's this knowledge I'm looking to tap into and pickup so here's a list of what I've got. Bearing in mind I'm going to take on space wolves most of the time, do any of you "pro's" out there have any suggestions. for a 1000 to 1500 game.

HQ
----
O'Shova (I know he doesn't get used much) but I had to have him
Ethereal
I will be buying the XV81, 84 and 89 to use as a commander, but for now I can use one of the XV8's

Elite
------
4 XV8's with Fusion Blaster, Plasma rifle and multi tracker
5 XV15's with burst cannons and a sheild drone

Troops
---------
2 12 man squads of Firewarriors each squad has 4 Pulse carbines and 8 Pulse rifles (soon to be 2 more squads currently no weapons selected)
2 14 man squads of Kroot
1 Devilfish with pulse carbines and a Burst Cannon (soon be adding two more of these)

Fast Attack
----------------
14 Gun Drones (I usually attach these to squads and have no gun drone squads)
7 Pathfinders 3 with rail rifles and 4 with pulse carbines and a sheild drone
2 Kroot Hounds

Heavy Support
--------------------
2 Hammerheads with Target lock, Rail Gun and smart missiles
4 XV88's with Twin Linked Rail Gun, Twin Linked smart missiles and a multi tracker
2 Krootox
4 Turrets 2 with burst cannon's and two with smart missiles

Not sure what these go in
-------------------------------------
8 Marker light drones.

Any and all advise is greatly appreciated.

Thanks
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 04:49   #2 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

Eurisko:

From the models you have, fighting the power armor'd space pups, here's my take on it:

HQ:

Use the model for Oshova, but maybe don't use his rules--take a standard Shas'el with the appropriate weapons (I would take plasma on every suit possible, always because it's the only weapon with low AP that you can get several shots from in your entire army that is AP2 or better). Plasma and fusion blasters are dedicated marine killers but require to be up close and personal to use their full potential. This is only suggeted with lots of suits (enough to be able to whipe out the target completely to avoid being shot back at and then assaulted so easily). Having 5 suits will do it for you just fine, but they really need to work together to pull off these configurations and survive.

Ethereal - you don't have a lot of Tau units that use his leadership ability. 24 firewarriors and 5 crisis suits and 5 stealth suits and that's it. I wouldn't take him against the Wolves, instead invest the points elseware (or even afford yourself a 2nd Shas'El for pure plasma/fusion domination).

Elites:

The XV8's are your marine killers (and terminators too) but they need to work together to pull it off. So don't spread these boys out too much. I would make one squad of 3 suits, bonded setup as you have them. And then take that 4th suit and make him solo, or make him an HQ Shas'el in place of that Ethereal to make best use of his better stats (I normally wouldn't recommend that, but sometimes, punishing power armor requires higher points into those suits and 2 commands can actually work as a pair of almost impervious marine killing machines with their balastic skills when you don't take an Ethereal). Otherwise, split into two groups of 2, but make sure they work together. When busting a squad of space wolves, you'll want all 4 suits pounding on the same target (12 shots, but only 6 will hit on average and that's if you're at 12 inch range). So if you take your commander with them, that'll make the amount of average hits and wounds go up sufficiently to bank on making 6~8 kills on average with the whole team at close range 12 inches. That's generally enough to whipe out or severely cripple a squad of marines (supported by say, a squad of Firewarriors in a Devilfish to supply the last bit of fire).

The stealths are good, but I personally wouldn't take them against marines. Marines are too strong and XV15's are too close range for them. Some people preach volume as being king, but for me, for the same points, I'd rather field a squad of Firewarriors in a Fish as they have more shots and the casualty they take is spread out more (and they move faster in a Fish). XV15's are basically just a bunch of Firewarriors but are close range only and have a little better save to compensate their lower squad size. The only perk (in my opinion) is the deepstrike and infiltrate ability they have. But honestly, I'd rather have Firewarriors mounted in Fish any day over a squad of Stealths. They just don't cut it for my personal style of play (I'd rather buy more plasma suits who will always kill marines and not let them attempt those nasty 3+ saves over and over again). To me, rolling a bunch of dice and wounding a lot, just to have the marines save them all makes the XV15 unattractive there (I'll use my XV15's against my Ork opponent though, where it works better). I'd rather push low ap into those squads to shut them up without letting them have a save. It's more effective and requires less "luck" on both sides (again my opinion!).

Troops:

Mounted firewarriors are the best kind. Firewarriors on foot are support really, but are too slow to do what they need to do and simply get seperated from the rest of your army too often as they're left behind. They're also very vulnerable to early fire, assault, etc. When you get more Fish, I'd definately field two full squads in Fish with a Shas'ui for leadership. Those two following some Crisis suits will eliminate any unit the wolves when they work together. Also, if you're firewarriors are in a Fish, then those Wolves cannot easily knock you out with ordinance from a tank (he can still damage you, but not quite as easily as before). Also, pulse rifles are the way to go. It's my belief that the pulse carbine is better left to gundrones where it's natural already such as on your devilfish or the fast attack selections. Firewarriors are better with two shots rather than one. The pinning ability is ok, but rarely does anything to marines.

Kroot are great against wolves because wolves tend to infiltrate sometimes with those scouts. Kroot give you the numbers you need to help push those "sudden threats" back into the comfort zone of "dead" while your more important marine killers are off killing marines and not watching their backs. Two squads of 14 are ok, though I'd want 20 in each. However, 14 x 2 is a good start, just be sure to keep them together so they can work together. Units that work together live to fight another squad.

Fast:

Drones are good units, but aren't needed against wolves. Usually this is due to wolves not having assault marines that move with jump packs. For their points, I'd rather have the volume Kroot provide so I can focus more on the low AP that the crisis provide.

Pathfinders are touchy. I like pathfinders, but I don't like the railrifles--they're too static for my style. I like my heavy weapons to be mobile via crisis and hammerheads. I like all my weapons to fire on the move because it allows me to adjust every turn, not just prior to a turn or a turn later. I like my army to move on the fly. And if you're sitting and shooting in one place, it's easy for the enemy pick them off. Personally, I'd leave the pathfinders out of the fight against wolves. Markerlights may be helpful to light up a squad and burn it with plasma/fusion, but for the points, I'd rather have another 3 crisis suits with even more plasma/fusion!

Kroot hounds are ok, they just up your numbers in the Kroot squad and will at least help in combat a tad. Otherwise, not really an important unit.

Heavy:

Hammerheads are your friends. Twin hammerheads support each other and are a deadly force. Nothing screams "duck!" like two HH floating about with railguns, and armor beware! Never leave home without the multi-tracker to keep yourself moving up to 12 inches a turn and firing and never leave home without decoy launchers, to keep her in the air. Everything else is a taste basis and only available if the points are there (in my opinion).

XV88's are tank busters--it's their only real roll against Wolves. I would tend not to take these at all because of their static nature and the wolves can just work around them or infiltrate and assault/shoot them if they wish most of the time. XV88's are better against those heavy armor people like Guard or a transport heavy marine army where a single suit will blast a transport away and win his points back easily before he's snuffed out. Unless your wolf friend fields a lot of rhinos and such, i'd leave these boys on the shelf a while and stick to the hammerheads.

Krootox are aweful in my opinion. Kroot are better as they are, they don't need this "thing" in there too. I'm really biased against Krootox though simply because GW could have made them reasonable, at least for their high cost. As far as I'm conserned, they're great scenery for dust collection

...

So from your models that you have right now, here's what I would construct. I would definately make some changes if you bought the ones you listed that you're buying soon (ie, more devilfish, more suits), but for now, with what you have, here's what I would do against those space pups generally:

~1250 points. I wouldn't try the 1500 point level yet until you get that extra Devilfish and more suits. Otherwise, you could drop down to 1000 points.

HQ - Shas'el (plasma rifle; fusion blaster; multi-tracker)
HQ - Shas'el (plasma rifle; fusion blaster; multi-tracker)
Elite - XV8 Shas'ui x 3 (plasma rifle; fusion blaster; multi-tracker)
Troop - Firewarriors x 12; Shas'ui; Devilfish; Decoy Launchers
Troop - Firewarriors x 12; Shas'ui
Troop - Kroot x 14
Troop - Kroot x 14
Heavy - Hammerhead (railgun; smart missile system; multi-tracker; decoy launchers; target lock)
Heavy - Hammerhead (railgun; smart missile system; multi-tracker; decoy launchers; target lock)
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 04:54   #3 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

mal takes a mammoth post, I need two words "The Bible"

it should impart most of the basics to you, I'm a bit confused as to what youre looking for here so thats the basic Bible, great grounds to learn from
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 05:09   #4 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

Thanks Mal, that's a great and very informative reply and thanks Dizzy I shall be reading that from top to bottom.
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 05:13   #5 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

read it, memorize it and you'll be in good stead to serve up an armylist and not have it ripped apart Harshly critiqued :

good luck on your journey
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 05:24   #6 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

In the bible under Heavy Support for the HammerHead it says "With 72" range and S10 AP1" I though the hammerhead railgun was the submunition type?
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 05:30   #7 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

it can fire either, sub or Solid, you choose which when you fire, thast why I always take HH over BS, BS are cheaper, but the Sub and a skimmer hull is worth it.
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 05:33   #8 (permalink)
Kroot Warrior
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

oh sweeeeet, damn I can't wait till my next battle, and letting him know this during my shooting phase ;D
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 16:00   #9 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

Also, now per the current v4 FAQ for Tau, Markerlights cause the weapon that they mark for to ignore enemy cover saves. Now use this equation: (Submunition round + Markerlight) + (Marine Scouts + Cover) = Dead marine Scouts.

Do that with Seekers and tack squads are toast.

Lay all tat down with a nice team of Pathfinders...that's their selling point right there. Expensive, but they make the punch of you army even more deadly.

Basically though, what everyone else has said is good advice. You Crisis config is sweet and should really put the hurt on power armored marines. Drones in infantry squads are pretty much a seriously bad idea now, because that same v4 FAQ states that they follow Majority Save rules instead of what's in the Codex.

Check out the links I have in my signature and you should find what you need to know if you don't have it already.
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Old 23 Mar 2005, 18:01   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: squad selection and tictacs

I'm not sure if you are using the rules for O'Shovah, but I didn't see anyone else mention the restrictions he places on your army. You would have to get rid of the Ethereal and one of the Hammerheads. You might just want to use the model but play him as a normal 'El or 'O. You might also consider filling out the Kroot squads. Using the full number is highly recommended.
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