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Stemming from the traditional and frequent "Broadsides vs. Hammerhead" debates, I figured that the Tau heavy support choices could do with a topic dedicated to them. So here's where all Tau players should feel free to discuss the heavy support choices available to the Tau, from your Hammerheads to Broadsides to Sniper Drones.
What choices do you take in your army? What are your views on the old Broadsides vs. Hammerheads debate? In your experiences, what choices perform best on the tabletop, and are Hammerheads/Skyrays any more or less viable in 5th edition than they used to be?
Discuss all things heavy support here!
While I am not the most seasoned/skilled Tau player I have always been enamored by our heavy support choices. After looking through what a Sky Ray can do I think I am going to order the plastic kit for the Devilfish I'm not using! These are some pro's and con's I came up with, its a start.
-Str and AP good enough to insta-kill a T5 IC foolish enough to not be attached to a squad.
-SMS if you think it will be more useful...
-Advanced Stabilization makes the group slightly more survivable/mobile or Drones can make the group more survivable.
-only slightly more mobile than a Sniper Team if equipped with A.B.S.
-Very Singular in their battlefield role.
-Low Toughness (Lascannon insta-kills will happen unless equipped with Shield Drones).
-Strength and AP designed to deal with power armour
-Target Locks for the drones
-Stealth field Generator
-Plasma or Melta often used rather than Sniper Drones.
-Good Front Armour
-Flexible (Submunition/Solid) Burst+Submunition=fun.
-Cover Save from armoury.
-1 takes up an entire Heavy Support entry.
-Good Front Armour
-Our indirect fire option*
-Has our only vehicle defensive weapons...
-1 takes up an entire Heavy Support entry.-*Can only fire indirectly if your army has other markerlights.
Sky Rays have become more useful (eliminating cover saves). Although all skimmers have become a softer target, also Hammerheads have become more useful now because the removal of parials and scattering blasts.
Honestly, neither hammerheads nor broadsides have preformed well on the table for me. The broadsides aren't killing vehicles and my Hammerhead is scattering the max distance to kill my stealth suits...
My plan for my heavy support in the future is:
Hammerhead: Disruption Pods, Burst Cannons
Skyray: Disruption Pods, Burst Cannons
Broadsides (3): Advanced Stabilization Systems
and I might give the vehicles multi-trackers. I'm not sure what people's opinions of multi-trackers are?
I take both Hammerheads and XV88's and both are high on my list of units to take. Not really a fan of the Skyray, just don't like the model that much.
-RH's kill power increased, gained a CS, and got cheaper! (Gold)
-IC got worse in kill power on both AV and infantry.
-BASS got better since AV's are tougher to deal with so they became more valuable. (Silver)
-Snipers...I guess they became useable...
-SR got much better because PF's became dirt cheap! (Bronze)
Well Constructed Combinations:
1x(2 or 3) BASS kill team w/ 2x RH's
1x(2 or 3) BASS kill team w/ 2x SR's
Last edited by spec.ops; August 14th, 2008 at 03:54.
I am not a big fan of terms like "Well Constructed Combinations", there are a lot of very effective combinations out there that don't involve 'heads and XV88's.
A couple of skyrays could ruin most peoples day, I just don't like the model. It's effectiveness is in the eye of the beholder. I think they are a brilliant unit.
Snipers are a bit so-so for my tastes. Too static.
Personally, I've never ran a Sky Ray or the Sniper team, not only because they seem expensive points-wise, but also because you need to know how to use them. Unfortunately for me, my rolls for markerlight hitting is horrible, I fail 5/6 times.
As for the Broadside vs. Hammerhead battle, I think a broadside is much better. Sure it can't move, but I really never need it to. When I deploy, I always deploy it somewhere where it can see everything, and I barely ever move it from that spot the whole game.
I take both a Hammerhead and a broadside, but I find the broadside to be much more valuable. Although fragile, if you stick some gun drones in front of it, using the method of hide and seek (jump out of way, then jump back), a broadside suddenly becomes a watered down solid shot Hammerhead, for alot less points.
Meh, I really need to get another broadside!
The only time I feel the HH takes back its points is when I'm against orcs. Submunition ftw.
yeah I totally agree, thats actually a great idea!
I never really used broadsides that much, however I am thinking about getting a unit of 2 sometime in the near future (I think there a bit over priced) I think there both pretty effective, especially now that with Advanced Stabilization Broadsides are relentless and not just confined to a D6 roll, however I do believe that as an all around unit the Hammerhead is a much better option, but broadsides are a bit cheeper!
There's a new funky little downside to the Sniper Drones in 5e. Due to the wound allocation rules, its quite possible to lose the Drone Controller if you take 4 or more wounds, thus eliminating the whole squad. (The drones can't be there if the controller is gone.) Not particularly cool...
Regardless of whether you take them on XV-88's or Hammerheads, Railguns are a must. They're still the best anti-tank weapon outside of meltas. Broadsides do have an advantage here with the twin-linking, but I prefer mobility and the option of Sub-munitions. The new scatter rules work quite nicely with them.
I still believe that in 5e, the decision to take Skyrays is really only contingent upon the player's love of seeker missiles. The markerlights are nice, but our improved abilities with stealth markers can make Skyray markers unnecessary, especially if you have a few more points for another Hammerhead. At least for me...
"It takes a vast amount of self control to be this dangerous."
---Ogvai Ogvai Helmshrot, Jarl of Tra, VI Legion Astartes