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[batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points
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Old 15 Jan 2008, 07:00   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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Default [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

This will not be a detailed battle report, as the actual game was a couple weeks ago, and the memory of details is fuzzy. Mostly, I want to share my experiences of using the Barracuda (under Imperial Armor rules, not Apocalypse) for the first time. I will admit that there were some screwups, both strategic and rules-related, and some improbable dice rolls. What can I say? it happens.

Setup, my tau: two fire warrior squads in devilfish on my right, a sniper drone team on either side, broadsides slightly left of center, Commander Shadowsun in the middle, and 2 kroot squads in front of everything. One kroot squad ended up out in the open because I ran out of cover. There was also a squad of deathrain suits in there somewhere.

Setup, Grey Knights: typical battle-line at the front edge of the deployment zone. A land raider and a dreadnought roughly across from the broadsides but behind cover. Before battle starts, my opponent uses "word in the ear" to move one of the sniper teams back behind the hill they were on, taking them out of the battle for the first two turns.

At this point, things get a little hazy. Grey Knights went first, moved the land raider out from behind its hill, and dropped a squad of terminators in front. He unloads quite a bit of fire, mostly on my left kroot squad, and also takes out the broadsides protective shield drones. On my turn, I make the mistake of underestimating the land raider, and firing one or two of the broadsides at the termie squad in front of them. In my previous battle with this army, I got a penetrating hit and destroyed the land raider in the first turn, so I guess I'd gotten cocky. The land raider survived the whole game because I didn't kill it with broadsides and couldn't roll well enough to glance it with seeker missiles. My kroot, deathrains, and one of the sniper teams basically annihilate the squad on my right, while the fire warriors in the warfishes close in on it.

I don't think much happens in his 2nd turn beyond advancing toward assault and killing a few more kroot. At some point my pathfinders die. In my 2nd turn, thanks to the positional relay on the deathrain shas'vre, the barracuda appears. I place it on his side of the board and wait. The fire warriors stay in their transports and move toward the center of the board, since there's not much left of the squad they were going to attack.

In his third turn, the Cletus Assassin, (the most broken, weird-ruled, etc., etc. model in the game) appears and wipes out most of Shadowsun's drones, and probably some of the pathfinders. (power weapon that ignores invulnerable saves, deep-strike with no scatter, and a psychic flamer????) I use a couple of seeker missiles from the barracuda in the back to shoot the land raider, but they don't scratch it. He gets to shoot first at the barracuda, which is closer than it should have been. He doesn't have many shots, but he manages to glance it and keep it from firing anything during it's attack run. This same result appears on the next two attack runs, until turn 5 or 6 when I finally get to shoot. Statistically, I think he should have missed cleanly over half the time, but he never did. But, he never rolled a 6 and blew it up either, so I guess it balances out.

In turn 4 or 5 I pull off a double fish of fury against a squad of marines and about half a squad of terminators. It weakens them some, but doesn't eliminate either squad.

Here's we get into a rules argument that I lose. I have a skimmer wall of two devilfish, lined up basically head to tail, with between 1 and 3 inches of space between them. I know one squad of fire warriors can be assaulted by the terminators coming around the front, but the other side should be safe since you can't get within 1 inch of a model you're not assaulting. Since there is less than 3 inches between the fish, you can't move through the gap, right? He moves one model into assault with the rear devilfish, risking the flechette dischargers that have actually claimed a few knights already. The rest of the squad moves within an inch of the fish (which apparently they can do since that unit is assaulting it), but they move through the gap to assault the fire warriors on the other side. After much debate he concedes that they take a flechette roll from being that close, but insists that they don't all have to assault the fish. So my fire warriors get pulped.

We actually called the game a draw without totalling everything up, which is a euphemism for "I was too pissed off about haggling over rules to stay in the same building with my opponent any longer", but it would have been close. The scoring units that could have gotten in range for victory points were my full strength kroot squad and his much more expensive land raider. Since I had killed probably killed more points, it would have been close.

I ruled the barracuda a waste of points in that particular game, but statistically it should be tougher and more mobile than the ionhead that it greatly resembles. Since the 'cuda can't hide behind anything, though, it's at the mercy of any weapons with enough range. The extra 12" didn't seem to help much in this battle. Add to that the fact that if the dice hate you it can be downed before it has a chance to fire, where an ionhead is guaranteed to fire at least once if you have some cover to start it behind. I'll stick with the trusty ionhead, although I'm sure I'll want to try the barracuda again sometime.
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Old 15 Jan 2008, 07:19   #2 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

If he assaulted the Devilfish and the Fire Warriors he could squeeze through the gap to get to your Fire Warriors as long as he kept 1" away from the Devilfish he did not assault. The flechettes would work on whichever squad members assaulted the Devilfish and not the Fire Warriors, which only has to be one guy. As long as the closest models assaults the Devilfish the rest are free to kill your Fire Warriors.

That is why most people FOF from the rear of the Devilfish and leave 12" to the Fire Warriors. You are betting on killing all those in the front of the squad, and even if your opponents charges the Devilfish and the Fire Warriors he won't be able to reach them.
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Old 15 Jan 2008, 09:35   #3 (permalink)
Kai
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Default Re: [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

No offence but that sounds like the most useless way to use the Barracuda ever. You also seem to have the flier rules wrong.

The turn order means that the seekers launched from friendly markerlights fire in your turn, once the barracuda is on the table edge but before it makes its attack run in your opponents turn. So once you've made a rear armour strike with them in this manner, you move you Cuda between you opponents movement and shooting phase, so get it to the other side of the board and away from return fire. They won't hit it (remember to add 12" to the range) and then it just doesn't shoot, and instead flys off the table unharmed.

Next question. The advantage of using a barracuda in this way is to strike rear armour of other wise hard vehicles. Using it on a vehicle with the same armour all round is a complete waste (not to mention you paid 20pts for that shot), so targetting the landraider was stupid, and setting the cuda up for a rear armour shot when it would make absolutely no difference where it hit was even more so.

Yes, it probably was a waste of points. But anything is a waste of points if you use it badly.
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Old 15 Jan 2008, 21:52   #4 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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Default Re: [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai
No offence but that sounds like the most useless way to use the Barracuda ever. You also seem to have the flier rules wrong.
None taken, and that was my first attempt at using any flier.

Quote:
The turn order means that the seekers launched from friendly markerlights fire in your turn, once the barracuda is on the table edge but before it makes its attack run in your opponents turn. So once you've made a rear armour strike with them in this manner, you move you Cuda between you opponents movement and shooting phase, so get it to the other side of the board and away from return fire. They won't hit it (remember to add 12" to the range) and then it just doesn't shoot, and instead flys off the table unharmed.
I would have preferred to use the seekers against the dreadnought, but I couldn't get LOS from a markerlight unit. In the scenario you described, the dreadnought could still shoot the barracuda. You can shoot at a flyer's current position, or anywhere it was during it's movement phase, which would have definitely put it in range.
Quote:
Next question. The advantage of using a barracuda in this way is to strike rear armour of other wise hard vehicles. Using it on a vehicle with the same armour all round is a complete waste (not to mention you paid 20pts for that shot), so targetting the landraider was stupid, and setting the cuda up for a rear armour shot when it would make absolutely no difference where it hit was even more so.

Yes, it probably was a waste of points. But anything is a waste of points if you use it badly.
Unless I wanted to waste a seeker missile on a regular Grey Knight, there was no other good target for it. There were only two vehicles on the field: the land-raider, which nothing else had a chance of scratching, and the dreadnought, which could be taken out by deathrains or the barracuda's ion cannon. I suppose I should have accepted that the land raider was invulnerable once the broadsides were out of action and fired the seekers at something else, but like I said, there weren't many other targets. a regular grey knight is hardly worth a seeker, a terminator gets a save, and the Assassin is too easy to kill with other stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scoutfox
If he assaulted the Devilfish and the Fire Warriors he could squeeze through the gap to get to your Fire Warriors as long as he kept 1" away from the Devilfish he did not assault. The flechettes would work on whichever squad members assaulted the Devilfish and not the Fire Warriors, which only has to be one guy. As long as the closest models assaults the Devilfish the rest are free to kill your Fire Warriors.

That is why most people FOF from the rear of the Devilfish and leave 12" to the Fire Warriors. You are betting on killing all those in the front of the squad, and even if your opponents charges the Devilfish and the Fire Warriors he won't be able to reach them.
And that never seems to work for me either. Partially, it's because I always think the devilfish is longer than it is. Any unit can assault from 12 inches, and some can assault from further. If the enemy squad is spread out, which they usually are, then they always seem to be able to get a few models around the fish and tie me up in assault. It only takes one to force pile-in and keep the fire warriors from shooting, even if they don't run away and get destroyed in a sweeping advance.

In the future, I'll be leaving less than an inch between the vehicles so the gap is too small to fit a base through.
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Old 17 Jan 2008, 04:14   #5 (permalink)
Shas'O
 
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Default Re: [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

Well firstly you can modify posts so there is no need to double post.

Secondly it's good to see more battle reports, some expansion and more description in the next one would be good but a solid start, have a cookie +1!
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Old 17 Jan 2008, 09:11   #6 (permalink)
Kai
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Default Re: [batrep] Tau with barracuda vs Grey Knights. 2000 points

Ah fair enough then. I didn't quite get all those specifics from the initial post. Does seem like a tough one, but the answer is to try deploying the Cuda in another place

You are right about flyer targetting rules, I apologise.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kai
Quote:
Originally Posted by †Methelas†
The Titan is not a human, therefore has no genitals!
My subtle diagram disagrees with you.
your "subtle" diagram contains Optimus Prime and Proffessor Farnsworth, it's heresy in it's own right!
Any similarities between your reality and mine are purely coincidental...
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