XV8 compromise, is it acceptable? - Warhammer 40K Fantasy
 

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  1. #1
    The deep down truth Rikimaru's Avatar
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    724 (x8)

    XV8 compromise, is it acceptable?

    There have been quite a few topics just lately about elite slot XV8 alternative builds and one thing keeps coming to mind when I consider XV8's, they are broken but in a bad way.

    When you consider the XV8 choices we have they all have drawbacks.

    Let me explain, the standard elites choice XV8 has the option to take any combination of weapons and support systems on its 3 hard points. However they do not have any access to hardwired gear.

    Now most players will take two weapons systems and a single support system and this means compromise. We have an elite unit that has a base BS of 3 so this means a miss rate of 50% unless a Targeting Array is taken.
    However when we take a TA the suit can only fire one weapon a turn. Ok that does not sound to bad until you consider the fact that the XV8 has little to no assault capability and most weapons have low shot volume.
    Most other armies elites have decent CC ability which makes them well rounded but Tau do not have this benefit which begs the question 'why is an army that is forced to rely on shooting and mobility have to compromise on its elites sections shooting?'.

    If we take Twin linked weapons it means we lack in versatility.

    If the XV8 takes a multi tracker to allow the firing of both weapons we are stuck with firing at BS3, again a compromise. Even worse if we choose to take a shield Drone or Shield Generator then we are stuck firing one weapon at BS3. Now this situation sucks, every single choice means a big degradation in shooting performance.

    To get the ability to take hard wired gear we have to upgrade to team leader, however that is only available for one member of the team and gets expensive.

    For comparisons sake lets take Terminators for instance. They have a 2+ save, 4+ Inv, Power fist or Lightening Claws for decent CC, good toughness and BS4 all as standard for not much more than a basic XV8 with no weapons. So they get decent shooting and assault skills, better armour and they only lack in movement (but they can be transported, deep strike or drop podded). Compare this to a basic XV8 and it really shows how badly compromised the XV8 elite is.

    I really feel that the XV8 should have BS4 as standard because they have no real assault capability to balance the unit cost, Ok we have mobility but at the end of the day it is the shooting performance that matters and that is compromised by whatever we take as support systems.
    I know we are going to get the VP denial argument with JSJ but to me this is not what XV8's are about, they are about providing firepower in critical situations, something only team leaders or Shas'Els/O's can do effectively and without compromise.

    When I actually consider the options open to the XV8 elite then the only really viable choice I see is the Deathrain with Targeting array, it is cheap and accurate and has good shooting performance (everything an XV8 should be).
    However even the Deathrain suffers from a lack of versatility that having the plasma rifle would offer. If the XV8 had BS4 as standard then a Missile pod, Plasma and multi suit would be a really attractive proposition and would not be too overpowered in my opinion.

    This compromise has lead to the situation where it is actually advisable to take Monat team leader suits or small teams of Deathrains and the shunning of Fireknife teams has become wide spread because they simply are to expensive as a base elite with the compromises forced on them.

    Does anyone else not feel this is a bit poor? We have a list that relies on firepower and the elites XV8 to provide the low AP, mid strength weaponry, yet we have to rely on an elite choice that is severely compromised by the choices of equipment available to them.

    Discuss.

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  3. #2
    Son of LO psichotykwyrm's Avatar
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    443 (x8)

    I feel the same way, riki. Its kinda hard to justify all those points on three models that get 9-12 shots, of which only 50% hit (referring to Fireknife team). Monats haves been great, but ya take a risk jumping them in an out of cover.
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  4. #3
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    11 (x1)

    I felt this way all along, but never got around to posting about it. For an army that's so good at shooting and moving, we aren't too great at either (BS3; Pathfinders, Broadsides [though we are still pretty mobile]).

    As for the XV8, it is because of BS3 that I only take monats or Deathrains.
    Two HQ XV8's, a Deathrain team, and mabey a monat should be good enough?

    Fortunately in Apocalypse there's no FOC, so you can use as many monats as you want.

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  5. #4
    Senior Member lLonginus's Avatar
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    128 (x4)

    I have always been upset by this. A Crisis suit with TL flamers and Burst Cannon versus a terminator with power fist and storm bolter?

    We are an army that SHOOTS. That's ALL we do. That's all we EVER do is SHOOT. Compare, then, the Fire Warrior to the Space Marine, or the Imperial Guardsman. IG and Tau have the same statline, Tau having worse CC and a marginally better save, and Tau have a better gun. Granted, I like having a better gun, and it does do a fair amount, but to have our soldiers who train in ranged combat to the exclusion of all else does not make SENSE to have them be equal to expendable human fodder who train at everything, but usually lounge around.
    When compared against a Marine, Marines have:
    +2 Ws, +1 Bs, +1 S, +1 T, = W, +2 I, = A, +1 Ld, +1 Sv
    for FIVE POINTS. Oh, and they get free bonding knives. Oh no, -1 S, -6" range guns, whoopie.

    I can't even argue like a civilized being, it's beyond my capability of words.
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  6. #5
    Senior Member xsickpeoplex's Avatar
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    21 (x1)

    i agree with all the above.

    then add to this nids which can take more high strength (8+) twin linked weapons than any other force....and they are all assualt....and they are a close combat army!

  7. #6
    running xbanditsx's Avatar
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    397 (x6)

    All of that is true, but the Tau still manage to beat all of those armies with shooting. That right there should suggest that maybe we don't need the extra boost to the suits. Sure, it would be nice, but I've never found that my suits weren't able to perform.

    I also think that JSJ gives us a huge benefit (which I know everyone knows). Terminators can't shoot at something unless it can shoot back. Crisis suits can shoot and aren't vulnerable to return fire. The risk involved in using our elites is noticeably less than it is for other armies. Typically my suits last all game long, whereas any terminators that appear on the board aren't there at the end of the turn.
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  8. #7
    Member Tralfagar's Avatar
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    While I agree, I don't believe the Tau should be able to have BS 5 standard in their Elite slots(Shas'Ui with TA and what you want). Instead, I'd like to see Shas'Vres losing the WS bonus and gaining a BS bonus to show they are more proficient. I would like to see Shas'Ui able to take one(and only one) piece of Hardwired wargear as standard instead. That way, they have the option of BS 4 without giving up their versatility. That, and it's never made sense to me that an Fire Warrior/Pathfinder Shas'Ui can have wargear, but when they get put into a Crisis Suit, they lose that ability.

  9. #8
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    9 (x1)

    Quote Originally Posted by xbanditsx View Post

    I also think that JSJ gives us a huge benefit (which I know everyone knows). Terminators can't shoot at something unless it can shoot back. Crisis suits can shoot and aren't vulnerable to return fire. The risk involved in using our elites is noticeably less than it is for other armies. Typically my suits last all game long, whereas any terminators that appear on the board aren't there at the end of the turn.
    there is one problem with your arguement, yes termies have to take return fire but, they can have many more men per squad, they have a 2+ save, and they have a 4+ inv save standard. I have always argued with my eldar friends who's close combat experts (banshees and scorpians) have better BS than out shooting experts. and i think that is a load of BS
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  10. #9
    Senior Member lLonginus's Avatar
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    128 (x4)

    Our only units that come standard with Bs 4 or higher are... wow, Shas'els and Shas'os. I thought there were more than that. Everything else that comes "standard" with bs 4, like the Hammerhead or Sniper team spotter have the TA upgrade already taken, so it is instead as though we were forced to buy it already. Take out our HQ slot, and we are a Bs3 army without Guess weapons. Man that sucks.
    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.

  11. #10
    Member israfel420's Avatar
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    23 (x1)

    I don't agree that Tau Elites should be BS4 standard. The fact that the suits are 2 wounds and have JSJ make them way better deffensively and much more mobile which is great for offense for obvious reasons.

    Even to allow Shas'Vre's to be BS4 standard is game breaking since you'd have targetted arrayed BS5 'Vre's in every elite slot. With all that accuracy the Fireknie with it's mid-high strength, mid range, low-mid AP weaponry would be so powerful it wouldn't be funny. MC's, Termies, Oblits, Wraithlords, pretty much every other armies elites would be completely outgunned and outclassed, unable to weather the fire from our suits long enough to engage our forces before dying.

    Besides, getting a higher BS is one thing markerlights are for and thats something am IG army can never have access too.

    Don't misunderstand me I used to think this way when I first saw the basic FW's statline(or even an XV-8 statline) and compared it's point cost to that of a marine I was shocked and apalled that GW would show such favoritism. But now that I truly understand the power of JSJ and other forms of VP denial I know that having those jet packs, skimmer rules, and stealth fields is infinitely more valuable than swinging hard in CC or shooting with 66% accuracy base.

    Besides have you guys not noticed that Mech Tau is one of only 2 "top tier" armies out there right now(the other is mech Eldar BTW). Heck I play hybrid and I still can't get friendly games at my local shop since everyone is pretty much sick of losing to me by victorious slaughter all the time. I'm not bragging here(or at least I'm not trying to) but I seriously haven't lost a game or even had a close one in a long time unless I play the one Necron player there. And those games are usually pretty close and we have played each other so much we are pretty bored with it.

    But I don't understand what the problem is with BS3 Elite suits really. I mean I just get around the problem by using deathrains with flamers. THey are 75% accurate and have 2 STR7 shots a turn with JSJ. The flamer makes them sorta versatile allowing them to fry little gribblies or dig out cover dependant infantry like Eldar pathfinders or Kroot. And finally they are only 47 points so they are cheap enough that the point savings can add versatility like Markerlights elsewhere in the list. The rest of the XV-8 weapon fits are largely unneeded for me and here is why.

    Fusion: I take these in scads on my Piranha which are BS4 with the TA's so I don't need them on XV-8's anywhere.

    Burst Cannon: Interesting choic for a firestorm but largely unneeded since I have so many STR4-5 shots from my Kroot, piranha drones, FW's, and BCs on tanks.

    Plasma - These are only really needed to kill TEQ and maybe MC's with 2+ saves. Since I run so many fusion and also the large Broadside team(one with plasma BTW) I don't need it. That being said I do run a CIB and/or plasma rifle on my attached Shas'O so I get even more AP1/2 firepower there. As for killing marines, well Plasma can do it well of course but I use more efficient MEQ killers like Sniper drones and Ionheads.

    AFP- I do use this on the 3rd harpoint for my TL:MP Shas'el and it is great at killing most every type of infantry except TEQ.

    CIB- I love this weapon and do use it often on my 'O who will either have PR/CIB or PR/MP.

    So you see my XV'8s get along just fine with their BS3 accuracy since they only really run TL:MP an flamers which are either 75% or 100% accurate respectively. Burst Cannons, Fusion, and Plasmas never make it onto my BS3 XV-8's and in fact only plasma out of that list makes it onto my HQ choices(and even then only one).

    But my playstyle/list type is pretty different from most people I've encountered so I'm not sure how other more conventional lists fair with the BS3 suits since I don't play that.

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