Sunday, January 15, 2012

Revised Tau 2,000pt List of Jolly Toys

See what I did there?
If you read the comments on my last post you'll have seen that there was a good discussion about the list. I've had a bit of a play with my spreadsheet and come up with something slightly different.


2,000pts of Tau
Shas'o w/ fusion blaster, plasma rifle, shield gen, HWMT (132pts)
2x Shas'vre bodyguard w/ fusion blaster, plasma rifle, shield gen, HWMT (184pts)

2x Crisis Shas'ui with twin-linked missile pods and flamer (94pts)
2x Crisis Shas'ui with twin-linked missile pods and flamer (94pts)
2x Crisis Shas'ui with twin-linked missile pods and flamer (94pts) 

9x Firewarriors w/ pulse rifles in a devilfish with disruption pods (145pts)
9x Firewarriors w/ pulse rifles (145pts)
9x Firewarriors w/ pulse rifles (145pts)
10x Kroot Carnivores

8x Pathfinders in a devilfish with disruption pods (181pts)
8x Pathfinders in a devilfish with disruption pods (181pts)
Piranha w/ fusion blaster and targetting array (70pts)

Sky Ray w/ burst cannons, targeting array & disruption pod (155pts)
2x Broadsides w/ ASS, squad leader w/ target lock, drone controller and 2x shield drones (195pts)
2x Broadsides w/ ASS, squad leader w/ target lock, drone controller and 2x shield drones (195pts)

(This would require another box of fire warriors to make 3 more regular warriors and 8 pathfinders)

So what's changed?
  • I've ditched the lone Shas'o as his AFP is hit and miss even with BS5. 
  • The fire warrior squads are increased to 9 which means more rapid fire and less chance of morale checks. They should still get wiped out in combat though.
  • Added two squads of 8 pathfinders which means ideally 4 markerlight hits per turn, their devilfish will be taken by the fire warriors. Deploy them with good fire lanes and use their scout move if necessary.
  • Hammerhead is ditched in favour of a Sky Ray. Although I like having another railgun (especially with the sub-munition) the Sky Ray works in synergy with the pathfinders allowing markerlights to be used for missiles. It also has two markerlights of it's own
  • Broadside squad leaders now have target locks meaning 4 targets per turn for the railguns.
The Good
This list will have a lot more oomph against masses of troops. Assuming you land 4 markerlight hits you get BS5 and reduce the enemy cover save to 6+. That means mobs of orks and genestealers should die in droves to a good rapid fire. The skyray can hurt some monstrous creatures, vehicles or marines with it's missiles too.

Bigger squads of firewarriors means 3 will have to die to shooting before I need a morale check. It also makes their rapid fire more deadly. Giving the broadsides target locks means that if I get lucky I should be able to damage 3 enemy vehicles each turn. Granted that's relying on Damage Table rolls but still.

An added bonus of the pathfinders is that my deepstriking commander should be more accurate. This will help ensure I get the crucial alpha strike with their low AP weaponry.

On a hobby sidenote, there'll be less vehicles and suits for me to paint but I will need to paint more infantry models.

The Bad
Losing the commander and the hammerhead means I've now got no large blasts to worry masses of troops. Hopefully my rapid fire from the warriors will compensate but then I'll be risking my scoring units. I often find the hammerhead's railgun misses anyway so losing the solid shot isn't such a big deal.

I've always found pathfinders hit and miss, literally. If their markerlights hit the target then they're great. If your opponent targets them early on then they fold pretty easily. The trouble is that they have to be deployed fairly far forwards to get decent fire lanes. This means they're unlikely to survive until the later turns.

Losing the piranhas is a big deal I think. They're great in objective games for contesting things and act as a good distraction unit. From a personal point of view I love the models but that shouldn't sway my decision from a tactical standpoint. I'll still have one of them to harass my opponent in a similar way to how I use a landspeeder with my Wolves.

The Options
The only things I haven't changed are my suits. Now this is partly because I don't want to start breaking weapons off them but also because I really like the missile/flamer loadout. It really makes sense for several reasons. Against mechanised lists they de-mech a unit and then when it closes in they swoop in with dual flamers. The other options here are to swap the flamers for plasma rifles to help against MEQ but to do that will all the squads will cost a whopping 96pts! I think the missile pods are too good to miss out on.

The Sky Ray ought to have SMS because they take advantage of it's target lock and they don't need line of sight. However, it's a question of what do I drop to squeeze them in? 

Looking through my other FOC choices I can't think of many other things to try out. In the HQ portion there's no way I'm taking Ethereals or any of the special characters. Stealth teams just can't compete with Crisis suits. I think there's little point in swapping fire warriors for more kroot. Vespids are awful. Another unit of broadsides wouldn't hurt but then I'd need to buy them so that's out of the question really.

Conclusion
The changes I've made above should bring more benefits than drawbacks. It's very difficult to make a Tau list that's capable of dealing with anything you throw at it. They're always going to struggle against armies that are fast enough to be in their face quickly like Dark Eldar, Orks and BA. Against these armies my best hope is that I get first turn and blow up some trukks or raiders early on. When facing BA I really don't know what to do? They're probably the army I'd need to change my crisis suit loadout for but then I'd gimp my list in other areas and struggle in other games.

One thing is for certain. Writing a Tau "all-comers" list is a lot more challenging that writing a Space Wolves one!

1 comment:

  1. well its very different... but somehow the same. Which I suppose is good! You've got punch everywhere but kept the main essence of your original army.

    What about dropping the pathfinders down to 7 models saving you 24 points (but not affecting the math!) and giving you what you need to get the SMS. I agree the sky ray SHOULD have it.

    It's odd, I was using a 5man pathfinder squad today... and maybe it's just me because my pathfinders will nearly always get 3-4 hits!

    I get the idea of using two pathfinder units but is it the best way to go? I would say YES if you are running smaller units... indeed I might be tempted to go with 2x 4-5 strong units. This makes them less viable targets (no one wants to waste lots of shots to kill them off) but gives you the firepower of one unit. Of course, you need to weigh this up with your ability to sustain markerlights throughout a battle. I've used the small scale twined pathfinders on numerous occassions (at 2000pts) and find they serve me well.

    The benefit for you would be that you could save potentially a fair whack of points.

    As a side, have you considered using gun drones on the xv88 rather than the shield drones? your main thing with these guys will be to hug cover anyway so the drones are pretty much just ablative? I dunno, just want to throw that in there to get your thinking going! hehe!

    I might suggest that the point saving goes towards some punchier weapons for one unit of suits (something to deal quite simply with marines / terminators...) but I can see that your weapons are fixed.

    I think if nothing else, they need to give you kudos for taking a sky ray to a tournament! so well done!

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