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After reading through the codices and BRB, i haven't been able to find the answer to the question i'm about to ask, and if it has been asked and answered on the forum already, I apologize, as my search function is not working.
okay here's the question:
When a weapon type says something like Heavy 1 or Heavy 3, what do the numbers mean? is that how many attacks that weapon provides? or is it how many wounds it can cause? or is it just some arbitrary number to confuse the heck out of newcomers like me?
This is the correct answer.is that how many attacks that weapon provides?
The only time when a weapon profile will deal additional damage it will specifically say so - any other numbers (such as assault 2, heavy 3 etc) simply specify the number of shots the weapon gets each time it shoots.
 Oh and just to potentially save confusion later, the number of attacks a model has on it's profile has nothing to do with how many shots its gun gets - there are one or two exceptions to this but they will be specifically noted.
Okay, so say i have a weapon that is Heavy 3, that means each shooting phase with that weapon i roll 3 to hit dice?
 and thanks for the help, i just want to be completely clear on all the rules, and sometimes it just isnt spelled out clearly RAW you know? rep for you
So a heavy bolter will roll 3 dice while a pistol (it doesn't matter what type) will roll only 1.
thanks for the clarification and i feel so stupid because i re-read the beginning part of the weapons section in BRB and there it was in plain black and white text. Although now i do have a question about blasts, lets say that there is a Heavy 2, Blast, Barrage weapon, i know how to do multi-blast from multiple models in a unit, would you follow those same rules, IE resolve each blast of the 2 individually, or would you place the template for both blasts at the same time, since it was fired from a single weapon?
The rules for multiple barrage weapons can be found on pg 32. There is a very easy to follow graphic that explains it quite well.
A weapon's "Type" column in its profile may include a lot of different elements. The words demonstrate the weapon types (Assault, Heavy, etc), but may also indicate that there are further weapon characteristics to bear in mind (number of shots, special rules/abilities). To give a complicated example:
An Airbursting Fragmentation Projector (a Tau special issue weapon which is only available to certain ranks in the Tau Codex) is noted as Assault 1, but there are two other characteristics noted as well in its "Type" column in the Codex. However, when taking the *whole* profile into account, we find that the weapon's range is marked with a "G" (see P.32 BRB 2nd para left column). This introduces 2 further characteristics to the weapon which are not actually noted in its "Type" column but which apply with equal relevance.
It's therefore important that the entire weapon profile for any weapon is read as a whole, since some of its elements may cause other rules to be incorporated into the weapon's type through additional characteristics.
"Tau Commandment #226: Participants who use Velocity Trackers in the Tau Clay Pigeon Tournament will be disqualified"
And just to confuse you further you have 'rapid fire' weapons, that shoot twice up to 12", or once if you didn't move to 24".
Range: Template Strength: 5 AP: - Type: Assault 3, Rending, Pinning
would mean you get three wound chances with the template, and can fire after moving, and on 6s to wound, you cause insta wounds, and cause go to ground checks (yes i know how broken this weapon is, i just wanted to make it complicated, yet simple)
So i do read the entire profiles when looking a t a weapon, i just wanted to make sure of the number next to the primary type, IE: Heavy, Rapid Fire, Assault