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I am playing against Tau for the first time in a 3000pt battle
I briefly allied with Tau a few days ago and have seen them played once before as well. In addition I have the Tau codex so I know the kinds of things they can filed.
However reading a codex and watching/playing some fairly minor skirmish games is very different from the real thing.
I have come up with a preliminary army and wanted to know whether I should completely change it, whether it will work, what elements do I have the wrong idea what areas am I way off that kind of thing.
In terms of suggesting different units just assume I have access to anything outside of Forge World, Witch Hunters, Drop Pods or jump pack Assault Marines (ironically non-jump pack assault marines is fine.....).
IMPORTANT NOTE: The GW store I play at seems (annoyingly) to be fairly lax with FOC. I know this list isn't strictly tourney legal. (one to many Fast and one to many Elite). In addition the concept of points values seems to be 'a get within 5%' as opposed to no more than 1pt over. Again I realise I am slightly over 3000pts.
Space marine army 3000pts
6 Bikes meltagun/plasmagun
1 Attack bike multi-melta
1 Landspeeder Heavy flamer + Multi Melta
1 Chaplin bike
x30 Sternguard x2 Heavy plasma x2 lascannons x2 Heavy bolters, x3 powerfists
x2 Razorbacks Lascannons + x1 hunter killer missile
1-Landraider + hunter killer missile + Sergeant Chronus
1-Predator Heavy bolters/autocannon + Hunter killer missile
Inquisitor with psycannon plus heavy bolter/ plasma cannon/multi-melta + full retinue 3 combi bolter grenade launchers + teleport homer
x10 Grey Knights in power armour + 2 incinerators [Teleporting]
6 Scouts teleport homer x3 sniper rifles/Powerfist camo-cloaks
5 scouts sniper rifles/missile launcher + Sergeant Telion camo-cloaks
My basic plan was for three units of stern guard combat squads (along with heavy weapons) and the Inquisitor and retinue to form a fire base around the Land Raider, Predator and Whirlwind.
These guys would pump fire into the Tau battle line with Battle-suits being a primary target.
The Predator though would be really going for Tau Fire warriors, as would my Whirlwind
My bikes, attack bike and Land Speeder would go flat out up the Tau flank en-masse on turn one, relying on their 'speed cover saves' to keep them intact.
Turn two they would swing around and hit the Tau flank or rear depending on whether the Tau had advanced. Tanks would be a primary target hear because of the comparatively high number of melta-weaponry available and the fair chance of going for rear or side armour.
The rest of my sternguard would advance behind the bikes in their Razor Backs.
Hopefully by turn two I would have surrounded at least a small part of the Tau army between these two forces.
Here the Sternguard Kraken rounds should be very useful. 30 inch range, rapid fire and AP4 I should be able to deal out some damage to the Tau fire warriors.
The Scouts would set up in cover and just generally harass the enemy. Sergeant Telion would attempt to snipe any Ethereals he sees lurking to elicit a morale test. Preferred Enemy rules would not be feared as Tau seem to rather poor in close combat anyway.
Other than this a BS6 missile launcher would attempt to take out Battle suits with Krak Missiles.
Finally in reserve my Calldius assassin would be there to take out small 'annoying units' such as stealth squads or sniper teams.
My Grey Knights would hopefully be something of an ace in a hole. With a couple of teleport homers sprinkled around the battle field I would hopefully have a fair chance of placing them somewhere useful with no chance of scatter.
Armed with Incinerators that are St5 AP4 weapons that ignore cover and invulnerable saves these guys should be deadly to Tau Fire Warriors.
So is this plan viable or do the Tau have something that will clearly dump all over this army?
I have access to other assassins, would an Evesor or Vindicaire assassin be a better choice ((I am guessing Culexus as always will be useless)
I know Tau are fairly useless in close combat and I don't have that much assault stuff, but I am hoping that limited application of assault but in the best places will be the best way to go......for example bikes soften up Tau fire warriors, Chaplin charges in. Similar tactic with Grey Knights (though of course they can't assault when the teleport).
Last edited by Visitor Q; January 11th, 2009 at 11:15.
My favourite anti-tau tactic under 4th ed was a deepstriking librarian (either with Termi command squad, or drop pod, which you said no to) and fear of the dark psychic power, plus assault, assault and more assault. Not yet got the 5th Ed codex (on it's way this week) so not sure if FOTD is a viable tactic now).
The main problem with Tau is they outrange marines on most everything. You seem to have that covered with the kraken rounds.
Battlesuits can often be hard to pin down, using Jetpack as a way to move out of LOS after shooting, maybe have the bikes hunt them on the way past? Otherwise, your firebase may not be able to get a good shot at them.
Another change i'd make is to tool the unit of scouts with the teleporter for close combat, and get stuck in with them (lose a sternguard PF or two to bulk their numbers). Also you're planning to move 3 Sternguard combat squads up in razorbacks, but only have two... hope the others can run fast.
Also, might it be worth dropping the LasC's from the razorbacks if they are going to be transporting and moving a lot (at least 1 or 2 12" moves to keep up with the bikes)? Go Heavy Bolters and use them to mop up infantry? This does reduce the heavy anti-armour weapons available to you, but also makes the Razorbacks much less of a target.
Just my thoughts, good luck for your game
I have too many armies to list in my signature!
I don't know ( yet ) if this tactic would work, but I've an idea, although it will change the fast attack slots. Using 2 vanguard veteran squads ( relic blade, and if the points permits ( but not necessary ) all power weapons ) and a scout bike scout with a locator beacon.
You sent the scouts as far ahead using their scout move in combo with their turbo-boost move ( moving up to 18" and claiming that 3+ invul save or whatever ). In your turn, you move them further ( if necessary, again far enough to claim that 3+ invul save ) to get behind the tau firing line, within 6"of the tau. ( So far as I remember, you can't launch an assault the first turn, so try to shoot with the units on the field ( your sternguard etc. ). In turn two,
you deepstrike your vanguard units within that 6" of the tau using heroic intervention ( they can't shoot, move or run that turn, but they can assault! ). Also, it helps the terminators to land on target ( ALL deep striking units, wether by teleport, jump pack or whatever won't scatter within 6" of the locator beacon ), and the terminators will be able to launch an assault the following turn ( generally, the termi's will be save as the vanguard stopped 1 - 2 firing units due to assault ).
Maybe this will help you. Again, I don't know IF it would work, so should you try it out, would you tell me if it worked?
th thing that I hate most about the tau are those darn jump packs, and those annoying rail guns. Defensive Tau armies I used as much mobility as I could [your bikes and razorbacks are nice] and of course some drop pods with sternguard. Against a mobile tau army i chose to fight evenly [mobile SM against mobile Tau]. Though I've come up balanced in wins and losses with this tactic [ 9W/9L with mobile vs. mobile tactic], in the end we have the "and they shall know no fear" rule and we still rock in combat against most tau, with the exception of the kroot, and a knarloc etc.
"Kill a man and you are an assassin. Kill millions of men and you are a conqueror. Kill everyone and you are a god!"
Tau is the only enemy I have real experience fighting, though not (yet) at this scale.
For me, the most reliable tactic is to advance steadily while blasting away since Tau have comparatively weak armour and low toughness, and getting into close combat whenever possible. Considering a larger army would mean more variation in the Tau army, I guess this strategy is a bit too basic, but the general jist should still work.
Deep Strike with Assault Marines or Terminators (In my opinion, switch at least one Sternguard squad for a Vanguard Squad or Assault Squad) and rush up with those bikes of yours. Possibly take one flank with your fast units and force him to either surrender it and be surrounded, or direct his attention there, at which point your slower units (Of which I noticed you have almost none, though. That's probably a good thing.) can advance up and take firing positions if you don't feel like getting gritty.
I personally think that assaulting is the way to go, really. Tau are just pathetic in close combat, so there's not much to lose.
Thanks for the advice guys. I'm certainly considering switching things around to include more assault troops. Perhaps Assault Marines in Rhinos as I have no jump pack marines.
Interestingly the Tau guy didn't turn up and I ended up fighting against Tyranids.
Did pretty well and just about managed a victory through KP though my line was near overun by genestealers near the end.