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5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 02:34   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Default 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

This is all about bringing ourselves out of our defeatist mentalities, and help remind people of some ideas to keep in mind for creating a list, and using an army to defeat another foe.
Gone are the days when a fully mechanized skimmer force was all but unbeatable.
No longer can a hybrid army dominate any battlefield.
The Ninja'O are now using all the tricks in their arsenal just in trying to react to what the other player conjure, in place of making them dance to our tune.
The Tau cannot easily make a single army list and reliably perform well in a tournament against all opponents.
The secret to winning though, is not defeating all opponents, but being able to beat most of them.
So, I invite everyone to post positive, constructive, helpful advice on the things that make for a good list and commander.

First off here is probably the best resource a commander could ever use:
http://www.chinapage.com/sunzi-e.html

I shall start this off by talking about simple list construction techniques.

1. Build your list for what you really like to use. Not what the worst thing you could face is, not what the “power gaming” units you could bring, but what units you can use most effectively over the course of the tournament, and enjoy using. This rule is most important, as an army you hate, is an army that will lose.
2. Decide what you are most likely to face. Building a list that can take out 4 heavy tanks a turn is nice, but you will find that any horde army will quickly stamp your railguns out. Not taking enough railguns and getting murdered by tanks is just as irrational. In a 1500 point game, I find I could face around 2-8 heavy tanks and transports, and between 30-200 infantry, but the bulk of games I see about 4 tanks/transports and 50-100 infantry. Be ready for at least that.
3. Bring more guns. When you are deciding what to bring, remember that causing more damage to the enemy is more important than anything else. Taking two different weapons and a multi-tracker for an XV-8 is often more important than taking extra armor and a shield generator with one weapon.
4. Take into effect the efficiency of a unit, its projected lifespan, and its damage potential. Adding invulnerable saves to a trooper squad is normally not worth it, nor is it wise to try to deep-strike fusion without said invulnerable saves.
5. K.I.S.S. Make your units as cheap as you can, do not take expensive weapons or upgrades unless you need them. Basically why take one expensive unit that could get wiped out in one blow, when you could take two cheaper versions of them, and bring more guns.
6. Any unit is expendable, if the objective is valuable enough. An inexperienced player will usually be overly protective of his commander, tanks, or other units. A fool will recklessly endanger his own units. An experienced player knows that his models have a job to do, keep them alive to get there, and is willing to expend them to perform that job. Consequentially, do not make a model or unit too important that the rest of the army could not function if it is lost.
7. Quantity > Quality. Basically, in a few turns 2 railguns will hurt a squad of Terminators, and dent a few SM squads, but has no hope of surviving 50 Orks, but 26 pulse rifles could kill those Orks, or those SMs, or even dent those Terminators. Now I am not saying that a pulse rifle will replace a railgun, but I am saying that railguns cannot replace pulse rifles.
8. Do not gear your army entirely for killing a given army’s. The reasons for this are now self-evident to some, and I shall clarify for the rest. A plasma rifle is one of the most expensive weapons in the game, and outside of killing MEQs or TEQs, is much too expensive. It has little to no hope of killing off a horde unit, but weapons that are good against horde armies, are good against SM.


I know there are others out there with wise advice, so let’s hear it.

Edit: Changed Ninja Tau to Ninja'O, a misprint.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 04:01   #2 (permalink)
Shas'Ui
 
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

Missile pods are more your friend than ever. With only troops being scoring, transports are more popular than ever and as they normally have rather weak armor, missile pods are invaluable.

Remember that almost anyone can get a 4+ cover save. That means that plasma rifle rapid firing is just as good as a burst cannon versus marines, and out of rapid fire range, its equal versus TEQs.

Lastly, with 2/3 of the games played being objective based, troops are very important. Mobility is also important. With that in mind, take devilfishes when you can.

Specialize your units. This has always been the Tau way and always will be.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 04:50   #3 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

Um sorry but how is all this advice 5th edition specific? And some of it's not even that great of advice. :-\

First off you contradict yourself with points 1 and 2. You say build an army you like to use not one simply built against your opponent army, then say build an army based of what you expect to see.
On point 3, who doesn't take 2 weapons on a crisis suit? I've been out of the loop for a while, did mono-gun crisis suits suddenly come into style?
On point 4, that's completely situational, which is up to you as a general. Do your crisis suits needs shield generators? Well that depends on weather your going to risk letting them get into LOS of something that's AP 2-3.
Point 5, well cheaper is not always better, otherwise everyone would be building pure IG armies, and by that I mean armies fill of nothing but flashlight toting guardmen. You have to consider a units value to your army, not just a straight up points comparison. I.e. I might rather take an expensive unit of stealthsuits kitted up with 3 marklights as opposed to a bigger but cheaper unit of pathfinders. Why? because maybe mobile marklights on invisible troops is more of a key factor to my army then the number of marklights I shoot each turn.
Point 6, good advice but doesn't really help anyone. It's like saying winning is good, keep doing it by being a good commander.
Point 7 It's basically the same as the "bring more guns" argument. My opinion, why not just get braodsides with plasma rifles, why choose when you can have both >. Seriously though if it's AP2 firepower your looking for their is nothing in the Tau army that matches the output of 3 braodsides with TL-Rails and TL-PRs (with multi-trackers of course). But the important thing to remember is that you need to gauge how much this unit brings to your army for the cost. Do you need that firepower, or something else more?
Point 8, well that the whole 1 and 2 contradiction again. And btw weapons good against hordes are NOT good against MEQ's/TEQ's. If you want to kill an opponent then the best way is to deny them that armor save. Theirs a reason why no one takes an army full of IG troops, it's because bigger guns are important.

Quote:
That means that plasma rifle rapid firing is just as good as a burst cannon versus marines
Incorrect
Number of shots X To wound roll X chance to fail armor save (assuming 4+ cover)
PR 2 X (5/6) X (1/2) = .83
BC 3 X (4/6) X (2/6) = .66

Quote:
and out of rapid fire range, its equal versus TEQs.
Again wrong
PR 1 X (5/6) X (1/2) = .42
BC 3 X (4/6) X (1/6) = .33

I don't know how you came to your conclusions but in each case the higher ability to wound and the negation of the models armor save overcome the bonus of an extra shot of the BC, and this doesn't even factor in the differences of threat/safety range of each weapon, cost, alternatives units filling the same role, etc. I mean you can go hunt terminators with burst cannons if you want, I wouldn't suggest it but be my guest and see for yourself how good those 2+ saves really are. My personal theory is this, everything in the Tau army (with the exception of kroot) has a gun that's as powerful as a burst cannon. Take a Stealth suit and what do you got, put 3 FWs together and what do you got, look at your devilfish's gun and what do you got? Why take another unit of BC shots on the one unit that can take guns that's severely lacking in your army? (i.e. plasma rifles, missile pods, CIB, etc.) Now a combo of BC and something is a whole nother story, but BC on their own are just not worth it IMO.

Quote:
Specialize your units. This has always been the Tau way and always will be.
Eldar do it better :P. Lol, good advice for when someone designs a crisis suit, most Tau unit's don't really have the options to really do anything beyond what their original intent, but this is really advice for new players not how to get better at 5th edition.

I commend the effort guys, but you need better advice then this.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 05:27   #4 (permalink)
Shas'El
 
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

I'm with the Orange on this one. This is some obvious stuff.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 06:02   #5 (permalink)
Shas'La
 
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

I really like it that someone is trying to keep a positive outlook on 5th rather than the all-to-usual "Tau cannot win in a tournament setting anymore"-mentality I feel I've seen to much of lately. Just because you're not winning easily doesn't mean that it's impossible. Sure, it might not be as easy as "copy latest mech list to win" anymore, but I actually feel there is an incentive to look at other builds and strategies now.

I like you attitude!
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 06:06   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

Quote:
Originally Posted by LtCariad
I really like it that someone is trying to keep a positive outlook on 5th rather than the all-to-usual "Tau cannot win in a tournament setting anymore"-mentality I feel I've seen to much of lately. Just because you're not winning easily doesn't mean that it's impossible. Sure, it might not be as easy as "copy latest mech list to win" anymore, but I actually feel there is an incentive to look at other builds and strategies now.

I like you attitude!
Positive attitudes don't seem to be changing the facts or tournament results...

We also still love our Tau, otherwise we would have sold the armies long ago. So it's not like we've abandoned all hope for them. I think it's more, of us, hunkering down and waiting for the time when we can spring back into the fight as ferociously as before.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 07:50   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

It may not be 100% 5th edition specific, nevertheless it is quite helpful. And the OP is trying to cut the vicious circle of Tau players having dificulties, therefore resignating, resignated players not trying and therefore having difficulties...

Although some veterans may not appreciate it as much as a newbie, anything that helps us focus and plan instead of the all-rising defetism is useful. And thanks for the link to Sun-Tzu. Kudos to the OP.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 07:57   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

Quote:
Originally Posted by Watchdog
It may not be 100% 5th edition specific, nevertheless it is quite helpful. And the OP is trying to cut the vicious circle of Tau players having dificulties, therefore resignating, resignated players not trying and therefore having difficulties...

Although some veterans may not appreciate it as much as a newbie, anything that helps us focus and plan instead of the all-rising defetism is useful. And thanks for the link to Sun-Tzu. Kudos to the OP.
I haven't heard of anyone completely getting rid of their Tau armies...
That'd be asking too much in my opinion.

I just don't think blind optimism is the way to go about it. We need hard, proven strategies. Granted Ninja Tau is helping. THAT's the sort of innovation we need though. I'd rather deal in solid numbers and create my own joy with proven methods, rather than leech empty optimism off someone else.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 08:26   #9 (permalink)
Shas'Vre
 
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

People are probably not getting rid of their Tau armies, but some may choose to take another army to a Tournament.

Well, some of the points the OP presented, how should I say it, have a point. Such as "bring more guns" or "railguns cannot replace pulse rifles". Good reminders.

I am looking at the post from a newbie's perpective. What do we, newbies, see around here quite often? People presenting arguements how we can not win and all is lost. This thread gives us heads up and tries to give some advise.

I am going to a small Tournament on 21st February and it is good that someone thinks Tau can win. What would be the point in going there with the idea of inevitably losing? I am collecting pieces of information and advise and I am going to try my best to beat them to Oblivion or maybe even to Morrowind. ;D

To get back to the topic of this thread:

Do not forget that even if all our Troops are slain, we can still deny the victory to our opponent. Just get any unit within 3" of the objectives and it is a tactical draw. Remember, to claim the objective the opponent needs to have a Troops unit there, but in addition to that, no enemy unit, Troops or not, may be allowed to be within those 3".

If you think your vehicle can survive this, try to Tank Shock the opponent's Troops away from the objective. Ideal case is when you go second and do this during the last turn. The opponent may attempt Death or Glory!, however, the hit goes to the front armour. Unless that unit has Power Fists, Melta Bombs or insane Strength, our front armour of 12-13 can withstand it. I tried it and it worked. Even a Tactical Squad of Space Marines is no match for our Skimmers, since the model attempting Death or Glory! needs a roll of 6 with his Krak grenade against Devilfish and has no chance against Hammerhead/Sky Ray. Low Leadership units may not even get to attempt Death or Glory!, since they need to pass the check. If the unit fails, it falls back from the objective, ceasing to even contest it.
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Old 06 Feb 2009, 12:11   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: 5th Edition Tau Self Help Paradigm Shift

Being a newbie to 40K 5th Edition and Tau I for one am happy to see someone being optimistic. To often I read about people complaining that Tau are broken and can never win. It's a little disheartening to read all the negative posts. I have been playing for 3 months and battle every week. I have learned that Tau are great to play and I've done very well so far in my list creations and battles. I tie more than I win and yeah I lose but oh well it's still FUN isn't that what gaming is about. I played in my first tournament a few weeks ago and placed a solid 8th out of 18. Not bad for a newbie in my opinion. Thanks Green for reminding us not all is lost and for giving some good advice!!
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