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Hey guys, I'm building a tau army and i've got a decent core... some of the new units though i'm not sure if they are worth buying. I'd really like input from anyone else as to how they work in battle.
Pirhanas: Now, admitted, these guys can race across the board and use a fusion blaster to pop enemy tanks before they have the chance to do a LOT of damage. Problem is though, they are basically Land Speeders for Tau... i've never put too much faith in Land Speeders (especially since they lost the ability to do 'pop up' attacks in third edition) and their armor is paper thin... What do you guys think of this unit? Is it REALLY worth it to spend that much on something that a Stealth suit team could do as well (but possibly not as quickly)?
Sniper Drone team:
I crunched some numbers and figured, that a team of three of these guys might be a pretty good investment. nine shots a turn, generally half of them hitting, over half of those wounding (versus marines). They'd be making their points up generally by turn two if they all fired at maximum efficiency. Problem is... it might be a little difficult to get them that efficient, especially as each team must be in coherency. I've not really had the opportunity to really deal much with snipers in any other army, but these guys seem iffy to me.
These guys i have mixed feelings on... they are fast, they can get into range well with their fairly nice guns... but they can't bring enough firepower to bear on any one squad to wipe them out (unless aided by Sniper Drone teams ) and then the next turn they are assaulted and get whittled down to nothing (i really think these guys need Hit & Run).
If one is able to feild a lot of markerlights, i think this might be worth it... I think i'd rather take the hammerhead though, for all-around use.
Don't forget that Vespids work best with a Team of Crisis Suits which can led some more pain with thier weapons, work it out nicely and if your lucky you can assault the now weakened unit and hopefully not kill them in the first mround, that way they can't be shot at, then if your lucky again you'll kill them in your opponant's assault phase, leaving you free to repeat in your next turn.Originally Posted by We Are Legion
Sure there is luck involved, but this whole game is almost based on luck.
The Piranhas are great...it's actually just what the Tau need at the moment. They are fast - fast unit can travel long distances every turn, and they are open topped wich mean they can move 12" fire guns, set out gun-drones wich can fire and then charge/move forward to close any gaps leading forth to assulting the piranhas. Tey can carry seekers, and if you race 24" forward in first turn you will probably get them into most of the enemies tanks side-armour.
I think piranhas are great, fast moving and they can be tank hunters. They are very expensive, but they can put down a great deal of flack. 2 stealths are 6 shots, 1 piranha is 5 shots, stealths give you a few more shots but a piranha has a bit more survivability to small arms fire. Expensive but useable, and they have 11 front armor, where many armies only have 10 armor for nearly the same cost.
Sniper drones, yeah, you can call them iffy. I call them immobile point sinks myself, and won't be using them, much too risky.
Vespids, you have to be very careful with, but they've been effective in my games, especially if you have crisis suits nearby to wipe the squad out down to the man, as mike noted.
Skyray I haven't played yet so I can't really say.
Last edited by mephistophales; April 29th, 2006 at 09:27.
I havent used alot of the new units but from what I can tell the Pirahnas seem to be worth it, theyre a nice thing to have around and theyre a fast attack choice thats actuall fast. Also, when compared to our other fast attack choices they are one of the better ones, either them oer vespids, which seem to be very good when paired with other units. Also, to take a maxed out group of them it is under 200 points, not bad if you can keep them alive.
Sniper teams dont seem worth it to me, mainly because of the fact that you can put a broadside team or a hammerhead in its spot. My firewarriors and crisis suits do alot of the unit killing when they can, i dont need a heavy spot doing it too, i need them to hit tanks and other big bad units.
Skyray seems worthless to me. Six shots in the game, thats it. You are paying for six seeker missiles. If you like seekers, put 2 on a hammerhead and while it would be alot more expensive it would be alot more effective at alot more things too.
The piranha has the ability to be extremely useful grabing objectives in cleanse and secure and control. This is 2 out of 5 missions. The idea is that it can hide almost anywhere before grabbing an objective with a 24" move last turn.
The piranha also has the ability to be a seeker boat and launch seekers into the side of vehicles after quickly moving up one side of the board.
The downside of taking piranhas for this role is that they're quite big, it would be very difficult to hide a unit of 2 or more, and as well as that, tau have a lot of other units that like to hide as well.
There are 4 objectives on average in cleanse and secure and control. Often you and your opponent can hold 2 each. A single piranha can make all the difference. Another piranha will not be as useful as the first.
What this means is that there's little reason to take more than 1 piranha.
Of course, piranha hoardes are a nice option for those that want something different.
So, what should we equip the piranha with?
The burst cannon gives you more S5 AP5. The fusion blaster gives you something you can also get in elite and heavy slots, mobile anti-tank.
If you find you have enough S5 AP5 already, the fusion blaster can be useful. If you don't need the anti-tank, more S5 AP5 can't hurt, and it's the cheaper option.
Either way, if you plan to shoot your piranha at all, a targetting array is a steal.
Decoy launchers are not as necessary as they are on other tau skimmers, but they will be useful once every 12 times you get glanced. Simply though, if your piranha doesn't get shot at, you won't benefit from decoys.
Sniper drone teams can work extremely well. I know of many players that like to take a lot of marines, and don't take masters (masters give ld10 to whole army). All you need is one casualty and the unit takes a pinning test.
However, sniper drone teams are useless against high leadership armies and 2+ saves. If you find your opponents field these types of armies, leave them behind.
Another downside is that they aren't a scoring unit, but this isn't a really big deal as they're not a mobile unit anyway.
The biggest downside to the sniper drone teams is their redundancy. Fire warriors, stealths, kroot, and crisis suits can all make marines fail saves. You don't need more marine killers. What you do need is S10 AP1 railguns, the more the better. Sniper drone teams will generally reduce the number of railguns you field. And for that reason alone, I'm not going to use them.
I see vespids working the same way as rough riders and assault marines. Off topic, but most players I know don't use assault marines how they are best used. They rush them up thinking they need to assault something. The best way to use assault marines is to hide them in their deployment zone, and charge units that get close.
That is how vespids are used. Their impact however will be in the shooting phase rather than the assault phase. Keep them hidding, then fly out and shoot any 3+ save unit. Finish the move off by assaulting the unit, locking it in combat. Even if you lose, you stand a good chance of staying in combat with ld9.
This does mean vespids are not so useful if your opponent doesn't like moving his units up the board towards you. In my area, all my opponents try to outshoot me, knowing that trying to get into combat with my highly mobile army is suicide. For that reason, I don't bother with vespids.
The skyray needs pathfinders to be useful. It has mobile markerlights, there's no point is using those markerlights every turn just to get rid of all its seekers.
The problem with the skyray is similar to the sniper drone team, redundancy. Plus it's too expensive (especially considering it needs pathfinders to be useful).
I see the Pirhanas use, i was skeptical at first but i see what you all mean.
The Sniper drones seem like our equivalent of a Biovore... but instead of one spore mine, we get three shots that can pin a unit or pop light vehicles, and its a way to have another markerlight on the board besides taking Gue'vesa or Pathfinders.
I could see a skyray being used in conjunction with Sniper Drone teams or in a static tau army where there ARE a lot of Markerlights. Otherwise, i don't see much call for it. After its shot all its seekers, it still has markerlights and its secondary weapon system, which might be a good thing versus a horde army (eg, fly it to your front lines after the really bad stuff has been dealt with and let the burst cannons/seeker missiles fly).
As has been stated, it looks like Vespids NEED support, though i wonder if it would be better for Vespids to fly around and... "soften up" targets for Kroot to charge?
I personally have fallen in absolute love with the Sniper Teams.
It's a cheap unit for what it does IMO.
The Drones all have Target Locks, so they each can choose to fire at whatever they want.
The Spotter has a MLight which DOES NOT HAVE TO BE USED FOR THE DRONES.
AKA, that is a Markerlight with it's own Stealth field. Not to mention it's own Targetting Array.
So, we have 3 AP3 Railrifle shots against whatever you want per turn, along with a Stealthed BS4 Markerlight shot, all wrapped in a single unit.
Yeah, I think it's worth it.
I find the Piranha's incredibly enticing as well. I just hate the idea of sacrificing units.
Always have, always will...*sigh* That's why I'll never be able to really play IG.
I think the Skyray is pretty interesting.
Still won't be making it into any of my lists anytime soon.
Sig by:Knape, The Celestial, and Marlinspike, thanks guys!
I love the idea of the Skyray. My main problem with the Hammerhead is that a 'weapon destroyed' hit is almost as good as a kill; it's no more powerful than a half-strength firewarrior squad. The Skyray won't suffer from this, as every weapon is pretty much redundant. You can hide it behind cover and use SMS and seekers and your opponent will never even see it until you want to use the markerlights. Granted it only has six missiles, but all of those will hit on 2's.
"My tanks have names, my men have numbers." -Col. Edmund Grahvess, 23rd Kronecker Prison Guard
I just think snipers are too expensive, because of low toughness and poor save (not to mention, heavy 1, yech). It's a bit too much to pay 80 points for a unit that can be killed by a blast template, heavy flamer, or even a marginal round of assault.