Full Tau Tactica (Basic and Advanced) - Warhammer 40K Fantasy

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  1. #1
    Oh No! Not Him Again! Non Marine Player's Avatar
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    Tau Commander Tactica (Basic and Advanced)

    The Tau, living on the edge of the Imperial Space, constantly pushing boundaries in order to expand their empire for the greater good, encountering all the elder races of the galaxy. They are a young race, less than two thousand years old, but with highly advanced weapons and technology. The Tau are manouverable, powerful and with many specialised troops at their disposal. In this Tactica, I will run through the Tau's units, equipment, give battle tested equipment combinations and give my personal view of the main HQ choice of my favourite army. This is the first of hopefully many Tau Tactica by me. Bear in mind that this is my FIRST tactica, so i will improve when i get the right 'tactica writing' style, so lots of comments on how bad this is will not be appreciated.

    Note: I wrote this to match with the 5th edition rules and the Tau 4th Edition Codex. If a new one is released, which it is meant to at the end of 2009, please inform and i will update.

    Battlesuit Commander

    The Tau Commander, the armies basic, frontline, killy character. A character which you must take (from codex and usefullness), he is a strong character to base your army around. As a Shas'O, he has strong characteristics,with BS 5, 4 Wounds and Leadership 10, he can take what he gives. He also has decent WS, Strength and 4 Attacks, so can fight back partially if assaulted. But, like all HQ choices, he has downsides. Firstly, there is no equipment to give the Commander to prevent the effects of Instant Death, which is a shame for such an adaptable character. Only Toughness 4 basic, a slight remedy to this would be to give him a retinue of Crisis suit Bodyguards, Sheild drones or both (a very points consuming tactic, but i think advisable in larger points games, or to simply add firepower). Sheild drones are advisable, as they are 30 points for 2, including the drone controller, and they have identical armour saves and toughness to your commander, as well as a 4+ invulnerable, pretty cost effective, but no extra plasma rifles. If a few points are spare, a bodyguard or two is welcome due too extra firepower and wounds allocated away from your precious commander. If your really jammy, you can give both bodyguards two sheild drones as well, giving you 6 toughness 4, high armoured and sheilded chunks of metal to get through before being able to hurt the stuff that has been killing you. This happens in combat too, and 6 high initative attacks from drones has robbed the assault squads of a few attacks before they get a chance to strike back. If you are short of points and choose a Shas'El, you still have a fairly competant character, basically the same, yet spare of a wound, an attack, a B and WS, and demoted to leadership 9. Thats as maybe, but he is still a battlesuit, so capable of alot of aggrovation towards your enemy. I generally take Shas'Els as support characters, as they still have the Deep Strike special rule. This combined with a Marker Beacon from a Pathfinder Devilfish and you've got yourself a quick dropping gun-platform.

    Now, the equipment, which due to the extensive armoury can be quite variable. The most common combination seen is the old Plasma rifle, Missle pod, Mutli tracker combo, which admittedly works quite well. Having two strength 7 AP 4 shots as well as up to two strength 6 AP 2 shots is always a tempting prospect, being able to take down terminators and light vehicles. A weapon that deserves a special mention is the Cyclic Ion Blaster. A great gun to use against alot of people. It may only be strength 3, not the most desirable, but it has 5 shots at AP 4, and has the equivilant of rending (when rolling to wound, if a 6 is rolled, shot counts as AP 1). Great for Eldar, Guard and anything else with low toughness, but can work, if less effectively, against marines. The weapons are as follows:

    Airbursting Fragmentation Projector:
    This is an ordnance weapon, but not as good. Useful against large units of guard/orks/eldar guardians/gaunts in cover due to the gun ignoring cover like a flamer. Like a bolter with a blast radius.

    Burst Cannon:
    Like a cross between a pulse carbine and a heavy bolter, except not as good aas the latter. Strong with high rate for fire. Good against anything with a low(ish) armour save.

    Cyclic Ion Blaster:
    A personal favourite, capable of gunning down all infantry (potentially). Pretty good all round (except strength). Causes Rending (any rolls to wound of a 6 count as AP 1)

    Run-of-the-mill flamer. Good against packs of enemies blah blah blah, its a flamer, you know how to use it. Useful with Deep Striking Battlesuit Teams

    Fusion Blaster:
    The Tau's version of the melta gun. Good for tanks, terminators, characters, but i assume you already know that.

    Missile Pod:
    The second best Battlesuit weapon, thi is basically a wrist mounted autocannon. Good against medium infantry and light vehicles. Works with most as a support weapon system.

    Plasma Rifle:
    The all-purpose Battlesuit weapon, number 1, you should try to take as many of thee as possible. Good against everything that isnt vehicle (with the exception of sentinels, penitent engines etc). Plus, it doesnt over heat! You can also always fire full range with this weapon, due to your Battlesuits ability.

    The support systems with the Battlesuits are also neccesary. Your Commander has need for all but one of them. The 'Advanced Stabalisation System' only really applies for Broadsides, but can be used for Stealthsuits with Markerlights. If using a Shas'El, a Targetting array is a good choice. It increases your BS by 1, to 5 in this case, and only costs 10 points. If a multi tracker is needed, use a Hard-Wired one, as it doesnt take up a space for Weapon or Supports Systems, and if you insist you need an invulnerable save, take a Hard-Wired Drone controller and some sheild drones, they will always make up their cost in protection value. If using a Shas'O however, the targetting array isn't needed, so a sheild generator could be a nice splash out on points. List of Support Systems:

    Advanced Stabalisation System:
    Allows you to move and fire heavy weapons. Your commander will never need this, it is a waste of points.


    Now to wargear, not including Hard-Wired Support Systems and drones. There are only a few that I would recommend. The Iridium Armour is sometimes useful, increasing armour save to 2+. This also increases any Sheild drones armour save to 2+, but limits your assault movement to D6, instead of a constant 6 inches. The Bonding Knife isnt really useful unless you have bodyguards AND sheild drones, to stop your possibly expensive HQ running off the board. The Stimulant Injector is very useful, it gives your HQ Feel no Pain, very useful if you've pitifully failed your armour save. Admittedly, this doesnt work with lascannons, but your bodyguards or sheild drones should save your precious commander from that. The Ejection system is pretty useless in most scenarios. It would only be useful at keeping your commander alive in an assassination game, and they arent standard game types in 5th edition. It may stop an Instant Death attack, but leaves your commander as a BS 5 fire warrior with a pistol and no armour save. Another wargear that is pretty useless is the Failsafe Detonator. When the Commander looses combat, which he will, if and only if he fails his leadership check will he be able to use it. Instead of an initiative break, any surviving bodyguards retreat and leave the commander in combat, with the enemies closed in around him. This wargear basically is a suicide bomb, a strength 8 ordnance template goes over the commanders head and the rules take it from there. The reason i wouldnt recommend it is because it is AP -, so even orks get an armour save. That said, this would only really be good against horde armies, as the low armour would be hard to save against.

    [Work in Progress]

    Last edited by Non Marine Player; April 14th, 2009 at 14:08.

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  3. #2
    Resident Mongoose Mongooseo's Avatar
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    Careful about posting exact stats and rules. We don't want GW to hammer LO now, do we?

  4. #3
    Senior Member lLonginus's Avatar
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    A few notes already:

    1.) Try not to spell out stat-lines as they are spelled out in the Codex. Assume that readers know what the weapons are, and instead of reminding people, tell them of practical applications for them.

    2.) This seems like a list of observations one would make when first reading through the codex. Really, you've done nothing more than restate the very obvious. I don't want to bring you down, but when you're basically telling me things I can easily deduce on my own from the codex, I'll just read the codex instead.

    3.) Grammar, punctuation, spelling... Sheild drones? competant character? due too extra firepower? Without serious writing, serious reading cannot follow.
    My gaming group's new motto: That army you're using is overpowered because it hurts my guys, codex is broken and needs a rewrite.

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