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I wont say much to start, because I wanna see if anybody else agrees with me here first... (note it's mostly a fluff thing, but I think it has application to the way tau are played)
Basically, I think it's kinda stupid that the Tau have a ballistic skill that is no better than the average forces of most other armies. Being a strictly shooty army the tau should be both more experienced with shooting than other races, and, given their technology, their weapons should be more accurate. I realize that the weapon accuracy is reflected in its range, (at least according to the rulebook), but I think its kinda stupid that half of a squad of firewarriors will out and out miss when shooting at enemy target sitting the middle of an open field. That's believeable to me for creatures with less precise equipment like most other races, for creatures with less training with the weapons, for creatures of simpler minds who have trouble focusing beyond the blood lust, etc.
Anyway, that's how I feel. I think it should be fewer fire warriors, and more effective A sort of elite troop unit honed for the shoot and skoot, (with other changes made to compensate for their increased potency, firewarriors would have to learn to be more mobile to avoid close encounters).
Anyway, like I said, this is mostly fluff, but I've got some ideas for how it could be done in a relatively fair fashion. Obviously firewarriors would have to be gimped in some way, (I assume in cost, but they could of course suffer stat loss as an alternative). Along maybe with the army as a whole... maybe something similar to the farsight enclave option.
[edit: and it stands to reason that the other units could/should have higher BS as well, but my main interest is in making a more capable shooty troop force, with less dependence on the mechs etc.]
the simple reason Tau don't have higer BS is balance. They already have the longest range of any armie, and strength 5 weapons to boot. Tau firepower is devasating, giving them one more point of BS would totally dominate games. My friend and I have playtested it.. it's not pretty.
as far as fluff-wise goes GW is horrible about fluff matching game stats... Space Marines are supposed to be rapid striking troops, raids and such is supposed to be their speciality. However Space Marines are far more effective when they are dont move and just lay down horrendous amounts of boltgun fire...(note I'm talking about vanilla marines, not BA, SW or BT or any of those cheese marines....). Also SM can spit acid, no rules for that...but thats in the fluff. See what I mean?
Also BS 3 fluff wise is supposed to be the equivilant of a highly trained soldier, on par with US army Rangers, BS 4 is superhuman. Most people forget that 'cause all the new armies come out with better statlines. It seems every army now has tons of 4's instead of 3's... I think that's sad.
As far as a squad of firewarriors missing half of the time when thier targets are in the open... this is war, wierd stuff happens in war. Most shots that get fired during war time don't hit anything. Alot of shooting is suppressive fire. I've actually seen video of firefights where hundreds of rounds were fired and there were only a few casualties.
please note I'm not trying to bad mouth you or anything I'm just trying to make some points. I just really get tired of hearing people complain that Tau's BS is too low.
--Keep Disco Evil--
Just for the sake of noting, the BS4's belong to superhuman Space Marines and the ancient sophisticated technologies of the Necron warriors, and a select few others.
Also, their range does encompass for the BS, even if half of them do miss. One fact that people seem to forget is that, although Tau are a highly-advanced race in the tech field, they're still humanoid weaklings with "mortal" limitations, unlike the hulking acid-spitting superhumans or the automations of sun gods.
EDIT: On a side note, I personally feel that battlesuits, what with aim-aiding technology, should give +1 to BS, but that's just me. If not, at least give like a +10 or +15 point option to get such a system.
Every whisper of the future from the Warp speaks of a hundred battles lost, a thousand lives devoured and a million enemies born. -- Inquisitor Lord Babel
what i think is a bit odd is that the battle suits only have BS3. I would expect BS4 like the elites of all other races. I suppose GW have done this to balance out the amount of weapons a suit can have. I'm fine with the BS3 for the fire warriors though, as there just foot sloggers.
Apathy is the greatest enemy of all.
Well, no offense to anyone, but I definetely disagree. I think that kind of balance, (making everybody similar), is what stagnates 40k.
So I'll address things in order:It's true that they do have good weapons, but why does that mean they shouldn't be more accurate as well? The point of "balance" is mute. I said that changes would have to be made to keep things even across the board, I don't see why their increased accuracy couldn't be compensated for. It's far from a game breaking change imo. It would just make the shooty army even shootier, it only seems natural to me that the tau should be able to customize themselves in the same ways that most other armies can. Almost every other army has more unit choices and alot more flexibility. The farsight enclave gives the Tau an option to be a little better at HtH... but that's boring imo, as that just brings them closer to what every other army already has.the simple reason Tau don't have higer BS is balance. They already have the longest range of any armie, and strength 5 weapons to boot. Tau firepower is devasating, giving them one more point of BS would totally dominate games. My friend and I have playtested it.. it's not pretty.
Past mistakes are never an excuse to carry on in similar fashion. And actually I think space marines fit their fluff well. Yes they're at their best laying down firepower, but their weapons are short ranged which means they have to move in first to use them... Your idea of "rapid strike" may be get to the enemy in melee immediately, but I think the space marine mobility, and their ability to decimate with short ranged weapons and THEN HtH to finish fits their fluff very well. As for spitting acid... well, uh, so maybe they should add a rule for spitting acid, I don't see your point.as far as fluff-wise goes GW is horrible about fluff matching game stats... Space Marines are supposed to be rapid striking troops, raids and such is supposed to be their speciality. However Space Marines are far more effective when they are dont move and just lay down horrendous amounts of boltgun fire...(note I'm talking about vanilla marines, not BA, SW or BT or any of those cheese marines....). Also SM can spit acid, no rules for that...but thats in the fluff. See what I mean?
You first criticize GW fluff, then defend it? Your welcome to your oppinions, but I can't help but feel like you're the conservative sort who'd rather make endless excuses for a system rather than try to make it better/more interesting.Also BS 3 fluff wise is supposed to be the equivilant of a highly trained soldier, on par with US army Rangers, BS 4 is superhuman. Most people forget that 'cause all the new armies come out with better statlines. It seems every army now has tons of 4's instead of 3's... I think that's sad.
Anyway, well I'm not familiar with that comparison, but I do think that a US ranger who has held his posistion to aim his weapon at an opponent who is x distance away, (I don't know what the equivalent distance is supposed to be, and a quick glance at the rule book didn't tell me), and standing in an open field, would be able to hit easily. That's a pointless comparison though... it is simply far easier to get into hand to hand combat in 40k than it would be in real life, so our real world comparisons have little place I think.
anyway, I don't think higher BS's are sad at all, as long as they're compensated for by some other weakness I think that's great, the game desperately needs more variety.True, you can't take technical terminology of the game into the fluff. (obviously you never hit when someone makes a cover save, but you did roll a hit first)As far as a squad of firewarriors missing half of the time when their targets are in the open... this is war, wierd stuff happens in war. Most shots that get fired during war time don't hit anything. Alot of shooting is suppressive fire. I've actually seen video of firefights where hundreds of rounds were fired and there were only a few casualties.
But... there are other ways of looking at it too. Most shots fired in war don't hit anything because classic infantry tactics involve suppression fire en masse while another group destroys the target... But this doesn't really apply to the BS in my oppinion.
First, pinning and fall back rules already model suppression from enemy fire. Second, cover/los already model suppression fire. In the real world the enemy isn't always pinned down, but you can still suppress their movement by firing in the open areas, forcing them to go behind buildings, or move through cover where they're harder to hit. That is all modeled in 40k already. Also, I think its a mistake to assume that 1 round of shooting in 40k equals 1 single volley of fire. After all, these are not muzzle loaded rifles, and though most weapons get only 1 shot per turn, we can't assume that all of those weapons have the same fire rate. In fluff terms, there are alot of shots that miss regardless of the to hit dice. I don't for example think that a heavy bolter only shoots 2 more shots per minute than a regular bolter, more likely it just shoots 3x as many. The game demonstrates this with rapid fire weapons, (its easier & hit somebody up close, so you get two shots instead of one). This shows that all rapid fire weapons can fire at least twice as fast as they do, but at longer range they're only half as likely to get a hit, (modeled by 1 less shot), or it takes them twice as long to aim for it.
My point is that you're making alot of assumptions about the function of the BS in fluff terms, and I think they could go in other directions.
You're right that that the BS4 does belong to space marines, and I do think that they should hold a monopoly, (to a degree), on being elite, but I think that the BS is just part of their package. Remember that they get that level of accuracy along with increased toughness, heavier armor, leadership/regroup advantages, etc. etc. So, the way I see it, space marines may very well be better shots than Tau, but its gotta be weighed as a package deal. The space marines can make those accurate BS4 shots while shrugging off enemy fire as it hits their armor, (obviously affecting their aim), and ignoring all kinds of battle stressors.
By simply having a lower leadership the Tau are different, even if their BS was the same. A tau FW squad may be able to sit still and use their powerful, advanced, (and potentially very accurate with little recoil), rifles to pick off enemy troops at range, but when they come under fire themselves they fall back, they get pinned, etc. etc. SM could ignore that fire and go on shooting with the same accuracy, making them obviously superior marksmen. (for a real world example, think of how easy it is to aim a rifle with a scope, so long as you have a good firing posistion to keep your rifle steady, lots of people can make long range shots. In U.S. army sniper school, however, they have to make those shots under all manner of durress, that's what sets them apart as highly elite marksmen, but when all is calm they may not be that much more accurate than other more traditionally trained grunts).
I think you can bend the fluff however you want, with a little imagination. Oh, and don't SM snipers hit on a 2+?
Anyway, ya I do think it would make sense for the crisis suits to have a higher BS, but I'd like to see a sept option that moves away from the suits and offers some sort of crack shot brigade instead, just because I think that would be more interesting. (alot of the fluff written in the tau codex makes no sense to me, I think they should've made a crisis suit burst cannon that has modified stats to take advantage of the recoil absorbtion, for example).
Anyway, sorry for making that so long, but you forced me to ramble... it takes alot of words to try to qualify your statements when you're talking fluff.
Anyway, fluff aside, I think 40k and the tau both, would benefit alot from more unique armies. I admit right now that this would be greedy to ask from GW, as some other races need attention more than the Tau. But, on the other hand, I like the tau, their story and their way of battle, so I'd like to see them expanded alot.
Without going into too much technical detail, (I had to just write that big fluff rebuttal), I think some obvious ways to do what I'm suggesting are:
Allow vetran type firewarrior squads, (doesn't really mesh with the Tau military hierarchy, but it could be explained easy enough.) Maybe increased warfare has produced more and more vetran troops, with no room for promotion and not enough advanced equipment to go around. This assumes that increased warfare has yielded many cheaply bought victories of course, or there wouldn't be very many vetrans. :huh: It did always strike me that it was too easy to advance through the ranks in the tau military anyway.
So you could basically have tau firewarrior squads as elites. Given the value of tau xv8 and stealth suits though, I doubt anyone would want to do this, regardless of how much more accurate the firewarriors were.
Another idea I had would be to reduce the toughness of FWs. Thus they present a very powerful, but ultimately fragile force. Vulnerable to return fire, and even more vulnerable in HtH. Kinda like when SM players use scout squads instead of devastators for weapons support.
You could also do a farsight think like I mentioned before. Do stat adjustments to them but focus on army balance by taking away other perks.
I think the sept idea is good, but please stop moaning about fws, they are only normal troops after all! :wacko:
Apathy is the greatest enemy of all.
ok i agree with papabear on this one fire warriors should have higher bs.
here is a st of stats i have written for them and i have compensated alot for that extra point of bs
i was also thinking of changing the save to 5+ but decided not because i have lowered the ws and init.
let me know what you think.
yeah, so with that all fire warriors will get RAPED in cc... sure they gotta stay away, but sometimes your just not lucky
yeah but they will hit 2/3 of the time with thier weaponry.