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Broadsides and Plasma Rifles
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 03:14   #1 (permalink)
Shas'Saal
 
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Default Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Rereading the section on Recoil Absorption (page 16) in the Tau Codex, I realized that Broadsides can be used as mobile troop support platforms as well as Tank Killers. If you take the plasma rifles instead of the smart missile system, you will be able to move 6 inches, and still fire a TL Plasma Shot at 24 inches, 2 if within 12".

For ten extra points, you have a suit that can take out any vehicles that he can see, then move up and support your firing lines. Against Marines, Necrons, Terminators, etc. this becomes a great option, because a player facing Broadside (non template) railguns will tend to minimize his vehicles and max out on his heavy infantry squads.

Not to mention the fact that for one heavy slot we could have 3 Broadsides kitted out this way. That's 3 TL Plasma Rifles and 3 TL Railguns. Yes, this is more expensive than a single Hammerhead, but it offers more firepower and more of a survival opportunity. Sure Hammerheads are great, but one shot can kill it outright (even with DLs). While a squad of Broadsides can survive a few rounds of fire, and will most likely force a leadership test to even be fired upon.

Now, I'm not saying Broadsides are better than Hammerheads, but that, in the spirit of the Greater Good, we should analyze our opponents and make a decision about when to field each unit.

Perhaps, to those having trouble with Marines and other 3+'ers, Broadsides are the solution you are looking for, especially if you find terrain is negating the superior range of your Ion Cannons.

Just another thought from the crazy mind of the Geek.
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 03:43   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

I see where you are going with this. I feel broadsides can support the Hammerheads, but not really replace them. The Hammerhead with its AV 13 will not go down to anything less than a Str 7 weapon to the front armor.

The other thing that sucks is when you lose one model to a 3 man unit, it must make a leadership check from taking 25% causalities in the shooting phase. That is not good when that unit may cost at least 225 points.

BS are good as individual models used to draw fire from your HH. {at least I hope so because I think I will be using two BS's to take some AT work from my HH. If my BS's at least makes my opponent change his tactics or the way his deploys in my favor then it worked to my bbenefit

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Old 17 Jun 2005, 04:04   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Yep, good point. And considering Broadsides with just the Plasma Rifle upgrade are only 80 points, you'll have a pretty cheap monat unit.

In the squad of three, if you take drones on each, you'll get a little more mobile firepower and a lot more survivability, at the cost of what... 100 extra points?

Eh, it's all about balance. My main point here was trying to break the standards. HH's are great, but the real challenge to being a commander is choosing the units and configurations that are the most points efficient for what they are facing. Broadsides could fit the Anti-Vehicle/Anti-Heavy infantry role very well, and leave points for other things.

By trying to think outside the box for my own army, I find myself writing mini-essays about how oft overlooked units can be used in an incredibly effective way.

Anyhow, Broadsides fit better in my army of mobile FW squads without DF's. It's like the anti-mech, anti-static army of small mobile units. Very tactical IMHO.

Bringing in a 2+ save, 2 wound guy that can keep up with FWs and still fire 24 inches, and occasionally snipe a tank, well, that fits my army better than the missile magnet HH. Plus it really throws my opponents off. When they see no Devilfishes they expect static. But when they get slow mobile, they get confused. It's just enough to make them think twice about their battle plan when they see me break out a ruler for those lines of FWs and some of my Broadsides. Now their wondering if they placed their terrain correctly.

Anyways, thanks for posting!
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 04:09   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Tommygeek:

I actually like the idea, and I've struggled with a similar problem regarding what to do with an XV88 other than stand around and fire the railguns. Ever since 3rd edition, I've never really liked the XV-88 because it was too static and too vulnerable for my liking, considering it was a battle suit with a railgun, it just didn't make sense to me. However, the idea of smart missiles was cool to me, and the idea of twin-linked plasma (more plasma?!? oh boy!) was definitely intriguing. The problem is, we cannot walk and fire smart missile systems. So, that leaves us with just the twin-linked plasma rifles and the battle suit, and a railgun that probably won't fire as often if we're focusing on the plasma (due to not being able to walk and fire) and it also gives us a big problem choosing which support system to take. Multi-trackers could be ok, but really they're a conflict of interest here. Target Locks could be ok too, but plasma rarely needs to be split up (but it's useful for the railguns if they stop to fire). That leaves the gundrones and shield generators being the other two choices. Both make perfect sense for a tough, advacing heavily armored suit squad with high power weaponry, but many people don't like gundrones in squads like this due to majorities, and others dislike shield generators for the cost. After all, 100 points minimum for a twin-linked plasma rifle with a 2+/4+ save? Not exactly worth it.

Still though, the idea of walking forward with 2+ saves, much like a terminator, covered in gundrones who take the beating for you (or get you killed faster due to majorities) is a fun idea, considering the kind of power a twin-linked plasma rifle has. They can take a lot of punishment from small arms fire if they do not have gundrones, but the lascannon will still remove them just as easy as a normal XV8. So if we're facing an opponent with lascannons, then this squad is going to be a bad idea probably and cost us a lot of points before ever making casualties.

I don't think this kind of option is even able to compare to a hammerhead as they have very different goals. The point of having the plasma is to just take raw power to the field, versus the hammerhead has a different weapon (such as burst cannons and ion cannons). The hammerhead could be destroyed easily, but a squad of XV88's could also fail moral and be useless for a while too, making them useless in general.

I think the real comparison, is taking the idea of an XV88 with twin-linked plasma and comparing it to a normal squad of XV8's and what they can do. An XV88 can kill with the plasma, but stop and hold still to fire the railguns to break armor. The XV88 can move forward and fire plasma as well, and they could take fusion blasters to deal with enemy armor, but for less points of course. So it comes down to the armor save, or the amount of gundrones we're going to use. Three XV88's with plasma and shield generators runs you 300 points, and a minimum squad is 255 points at 3 member strong. With gundrones, we're looking at 300 points again. So what's the best way to go? Shield generators or gundrones? That depends on our enemy really - lascannons will be well taken by gundrones, but heavy bolters will be better tangling with our 2+ save.

So the real purpose is to simply walk forward with a tough squad of XV88's, like terminators again, firing plasma and taking down up to 3 marines at 24 inches, or 6 at close range (of course, if everything rolled perfectly, which it will not). A squad of XV8's could do the same thing with twin-linked plasma for much less points (78 points for example). But they're less tough, but at least they're faster.

Now if you consider the railguns, it's tricky again, but still we have to stop to fire, making it a tough choice to make. The XV8 with Plasma/Fusion on the other hand could do something similar.

XV8 Shas'ui - 66 points.
Twin-linked Plasma Rifle
Fusion Blaster

Not a cheap suit, but not breaking the bank either. It can move forward, in squads of 3, laying down the law with plasma. And they move up to 12 inches a turn if they must, and if armor comes too close, we can switch to our fusion blasters to do that job, while the plasma takes on armor targets and infantry alike from medium armor and lower, but mainly transports.

XV88 Shasui - 85 points.
Twin-linked Plasma Rifle
Twin-linked Railgun
Multi-tracker? Target Lock?

This is our minimum here with the setup, and we're considerably higher on the points, but really we're tough with that 2+ save. We're also packing a railgun, but sitting still and firing it means our plasma isn't doing anything. So really, perhaps the railguns should fire first, to remove the armor, and then start marching forward to shoot their plasma rifles the rest of the game. That's the only real way I can see them being used in a steady walking/firing manner. Generally the plasma is used as a counter, in case something comes in too fast, too close to the XV88 squads (such as assault marines, or terminators deep striking) which allows the XV88 squad a chance to really open up a lot of accurate firepower into the new threat.

Is this worth replacing our XV8 for the same job? Maybe... but I'm starting to think the XV8 would be a better choice. I don't run three hammerheads myself, ever, which leaves room for XV88's, but I don't think I would use a heavy slot just for advacing XV88's with plasma rifles. I'd rather use Crisis for that, as they're cheaper and will be killed by the same weapons pretty much, but the mobility of the Crisis makes it just better at using plasma. Also, the ability to deep strike and use that plasma, then sit and wait out the return fire, then get back to firing just works out better I would think.

Nice idea for a pure plasma tau army that doesn't take Hammerheads, but I think the XV88 with plasma is more comparable to the XV8 with plasma, not the Hammerhead. Hammerheads do quite a different job in many respects, and have a different damage tolerance all together.

I would like to see 9 advancing twin-linked plasma toting XV-88 Broadsides though on the battle field, behind lines of advancing Fire Warriors, commanded by an Ethereal and flanked by lots and lots of twin-linked plasma toting XV8 Crisis suits and lots of pathfinders too. It would be just a lot of low AP on the board, and kind of resemble something an Eldar player would do, but in a much less resilient manner of course.

Interesting to ponder!
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 04:15   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Quote:
Originally Posted by tommygeek
Rereading the section on Recoil Absorption (page 16) in the Tau Codex, I realized that Broadsides can be used as mobile troop support platforms as well as Tank Killers. If you take the plasma rifles instead of the smart missile system, you will be able to move 6 inches, and still fire a TL Plasma Shot at 24 inches, 2 if within 12".

For ten extra points, you have a suit that can take out any vehicles that he can see, then move up and support your firing lines. Against Marines, Necrons, Terminators, etc. this becomes a great option, because a player facing Broadside (non template) railguns will tend to minimize his vehicles and max out on his heavy infantry squads.

Not to mention the fact that for one heavy slot we could have 3 Broadsides kitted out this way. That's 3 TL Plasma Rifles and 3 TL Railguns. Yes, this is more expensive than a single Hammerhead, but it offers more firepower and more of a survival opportunity. Sure Hammerheads are great, but one shot can kill it outright (even with DLs). While a squad of Broadsides can survive a few rounds of fire, and will most likely force a leadership test to even be fired upon.

Now, I'm not saying Broadsides are better than Hammerheads, but that, in the spirit of the Greater Good, we should analyze our opponents and make a decision about when to field each unit.

Perhaps, to those having trouble with Marines and other 3+'ers, Broadsides are the solution you are looking for, especially if you find terrain is negating the superior range of your Ion Cannons.

Just another thought from the crazy mind of the Geek.
Broadsides are much better than hammerheads. You get more shots for cheaper, and they are more accurate. I'm talking purely about tank hunting roles, because if you put the suits down as your third heavy you have a better chance of answering their deployment. And since the tanks can answer threats by moving, you lose nothing by putting them down first and second.

If you go three plasma rifles though, I would suggest taking multi-trackers and putting a hard wired target lock on your team leader. You have two shots targetting the major threat (Monolith, Land Raider, whatever) and one single shot to throw around depending on the severity of the situation.

After your tank threats have been punched through, you can then turn 6 very high strength and LOW ap shots on entire squads. I don't know any marine squads this side of the death company that can take 3 rail guns and 3 plasma shots, 6 if closer. I'm personally sold on trying this method out since my last game, because prior to that my suits were just tank snipers. But when the tanks didn't show up, or when they are in transports popping smoke and such I would wish I had more firepower.

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Old 17 Jun 2005, 04:46   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

After reading these additional comments, I will have to ponder the use if BS's, too bad two my BS's have the SMS all ready glued on.

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Old 17 Jun 2005, 04:49   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

im starting to like broad side as much as HH if u leave them in cover they will last as long as a HH or at least get there job done of taking out them tanks before they die
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 05:00   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Broadsides are still the cheapest and most accurate S10 shot in the game, there's no denying that.
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Old 17 Jun 2005, 05:36   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

My 1st broadside is a monat with tl plasma and he has proven to be very usefull with a multi-tracker.
For 85 pts he is a great addition to my HH for tank busting, and the plasma rifles have already killed a bucketfull of smurfs ( mostly deep striking Grey Knights who were close enough to double tap on ).
10 pts. is a bargain for tl plasma, and my next 2 broadsides will have plasma too ( when I get around to them )
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Old 18 Jun 2005, 14:47   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Broadsides and Plasma Rifles

Quote:
Broadsides are much better than hammerheads. You get more shots for cheaper, and they are more accurate. I'm talking purely about tank hunting roles, because* if you put the suits down as your third heavy you have a better chance of answering their deployment. And since the tanks can answer threats by moving, you lose nothing by putting them down first and second.

If you go three plasma rifles though, I would suggest taking multi-trackers and putting a* hard wired target lock on your team leader. You have two shots targetting the major threat (Monolith, Land Raider, whatever) and one single shot to throw around depending on the severity of the situation.

After your tank threats have been punched through, you can then turn 6 very high strength and LOW ap shots on entire squads. I don't know any marine squads this side of the death company that can take 3 rail guns and 3 plasma shots, 6 if closer. I'm personally sold on trying this method out since my last game, because prior to that my suits were just tank snipers. But when the tanks didn't show up, or when they are in transports popping smoke and such I would wish I had more firepower.

Not so.* Hammerheads and broadsides both have their uses, but with Broadsides, you prettymuch have to stay put or you lose your railshot for the turn.* If you want more plasma, take more crisis suits and give them plasma, because they're mobile enough to use it.

Definately take plasma on your broadsides--good for cracking open anybody who deep-strikes.* But if you want them to kill forward units, go with crisis suits--otherwise, they'll just hit him with a lasgun because he can't move very fast and be done with him.*

Broadsides are NOT a replacement for hammerheads.* The mobility issue is just too big a part to ignore.* Take 'em, but don't take only them.

Also, broadsides can't use the pie-plate shot. That is a SERIOUS ADVANTAGE that the hammerheads have, especially against swarmed enemies of 4+ or worse saves. The pie-plate saved my ARSE against the 'nids last game when he infiltrated a genestealer squad up my arse.
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