T’au Empire Preview: Farsight Enclaves

The warriors of the Farsight Enclaves are the most rebellious of the T’au, eschewing the assistance of the Ethereals and instead following the teachings of Commander Farsight – a legendary hero who left the T’au Empire to pursue his own goals.

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The Farsight Enclaves are known for their mastery of close assault, using their battlesuits to great effect in mass drop assaults from Manta transports. On the tabletop, the Farsight Enclaves possess a Sept Tenet that opens up a new tactical avenue for your army, making your force surprisingly deadly in close quarters:

There are all sorts of units you could combine with this Sept Tenet – from Breacher Teams to XV8 Crisis Battlesuits armed with three flamers apiece (that’ll teach them to charge you!) – but that’s not all there is to the Farsight Enclaves.

As the founder of the Farsight Enclaves, and one of the T’au Empire’s most legendary heroes, Commander Farsight has long been a fan favourite. One small but welcome change to Commander Farsight is an upgrade to both his weapons; his plasma rifle now deals additional damage, and the Dawn Blade possesses a suitably terrifying profile, as befits a life-draining xenos sword older than the Imperium itself.

Any character looking to go toe-to-toe with Farsight will have to deal with four Strength 8 attacks, hitting on 2s, re-rolling 1s, cleaving through all but the heaviest armour and doing D3 damage apiece! What’s more, with the Farsight Enclaves Warlord Trait, this legendary leader will be able to jump to the aid of nearby units.

With Commander Farsight on your side, you’ll be able to create a force that’s more than capable of confronting the foe at close range.

Commander Farsight is far from the only legendary commander to hail from the Farsight Enclaves, and you’ll be able to use Codex: T’au Empire to build all manner of legendary heroes – whether you’re recreating one of The Eight or constructing a Commander of your own invention.

The new T’au Empire codex has been designed to provide a range of meaningful choices when selecting a Commander – rather than acting as a mere alternative to a unit of Crisis Suits, each feels like a hero in their own right.

This change has been enacted in two parts. On the one hand, in matched play games, you’ll be limited to one Commander per Detachment you take:

On the other, T’au Empire Commanders have a huge array of Warlord Traits and Signature Systems to choose from. You’ll even be able to decide whether you want to equip yours with the XV8 Crisis battlesuit (or even XV8-02 Crisis Iridium armour, which is now an upgrade rather than a Signature System) or opt to spend more points and gain an extra Wound with the XV85 Enforcer battlesuit. These can then be fitted with a wide variety of equipment. In the Farsight Enclaves, we’d recommend stocking up on close combat options with a couple of returning favourites:

With these weapons, you’ll be able to shore up your Fight phase and give the enemy a very nasty surprise…

Of course, if you’d prefer to keep your Commanders on the back lines, we’d recommend using the Command-and-Control Node Stratagem. By forgoing your own shooting, you’ll be able to considerably increase the destructive capabilities of one of your battlesuits – combine this with a Riptide Battlesuit for the best results!

If bringing the fight directly to your enemy with an army of short-ranged battlesuits sounds fun, then the Farsight Enclaves are for you. Of course, the new T’au Empire codex features plenty for more subtle generals as well. Check back tomorrow, when we’ll be looking at the stealthy forces of Dal’yth and some improvements to the sneakiest of battlesuits. In the meantime, the best place to start your Farsight Enclaves army is with Commander Farsight himself and you can pick yours up today.


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39 Responses to “T’au Empire Preview: Farsight Enclaves”

  1. Ujayim March 7, 2018 10:21 am #

    Really, really not a fan of the Commander restriction and really, really hope it isn’t expanded to other armies.

    That’s about the fastest way to get me to not buy the $30 individual character boxes, and stop buying HQ models.

    • abusepuppy March 7, 2018 10:46 am #

      It feels like a very clumsy and heavy-handed way to solve what was admittedly a poor feature of Tau in the Index. But better balancing on the Commander’s cost (as well as the relative costs of other units, such as Crisis) would’ve been a better way to handle things.

      • Ujayim March 7, 2018 11:15 am #

        Absolutely. From a player standpoint, it’s an obvious overstep.

        From a collector and consumer standpoint, which I hope they respond to even more, it actively deters me spending money.

        I’m hoping we see them relax a little bit and try less… aggressive changes, if you will.

        • Reecius
          Reecius March 7, 2018 12:13 pm #

          I could only speculate as to why this was done but I can say from a purely personal perspective I do not like ANY type of HQ spam in matched play games. It does not accurately reflect the backstory in many cases and does not provide a fun and balanced game play experience (13 Malefic Lord lists when that was a thing, etc.). Character Spam is not positive for the game in general terms. However, from the perspective of a T’au player used to using lots of Commanders I totally get the negative reaction.

          • Ujayim March 7, 2018 12:26 pm

            Lore wise, thinks like the Eight and groups of rebel commanders working together is absolutely a thing, and renegades led by mutated psykers hosting warbands probably existed, but I’m not of the opinion lore should equal game rules.

            Hell, I’m not even a Tau player.

            I’m nervous of the implication this holds on other armies. Restricting unit choices arbitrarily isn’t balance, and it doesn’t make the customer who purchased models feel good about the value of their money if they are told by the rule set that their valid models are “not allowed” to be used in multiples, not as part of the rule set affecting everyone, but to artificially impact specific choices.

            I want to give them, or in this Scenario, YOU, my money, but I cannot do see if my money is not worth investing.

          • Reecius
            Reecius March 7, 2018 1:03 pm

            I totally get your point, it is a case of putting the genie back in the bottle.

            We honestly should never have had a scenario in which you could spam out HQs (although your example of the 8 is accurate, and was represented in the game with a special unit as I am sure you know) but we did, it was not very positive for game play and so know there is some backtracking going on.

            Really it comes down to do you think it is better to make a perceived mistake and do nothing or to try and fix it? Both have pros and cons but I tend to be in favor of trying to fix perceived errors. Again though, to reiterate, I can only speculate why this choice was made as I did not make it.

          • Draaen March 7, 2018 12:41 pm

            The part that feels harsh to me i that Tau have 4 generic HQ choices in the index. The teased XV8 commander makes it 5. 3/5 of the known/teased generic HQs are mutually exclusive. Hopefully they release some other HQ options like a generic tank commander that can help not shoehorn someone wanting to take a brigade.

          • Reecius
            Reecius March 7, 2018 1:00 pm

            Fair critique. It is a shock I am sure to the players that were using Commander Spam, no doubt about it.

          • Ujayim March 7, 2018 1:28 pm

            I feel you, Reece. To clarify; 0% of this critique is aimed towards you. I’m just voicing concern into the void.

            I dunno, man. I just don’t see HQs as problem units. GW Couldn’t of hated it at the start, either. We have a whole detachment for them.

            I don’t wanna have bought, for example, a couple of boxes of Custodes Bikes to use as Captains and then suddenly be told I can only bring one of each Captain per detachment, or something. I just wanna use my models, because these HQ spam lists aren’t running the game.

            I’m emotionally invested and it makes for a bad basis of argument, but it just FEELS bad.

          • Reecius
            Reecius March 7, 2018 1:31 pm

            Yeah, I get it. We’ll see how it pans out in reality but I do totally understand the angst.

          • Dakkath March 7, 2018 1:35 pm

            It’s not even about commander spam. I was running 2 commanders in my battalion. Just 2. Because I don’t like any of the other hqs. Now I can’t do that, because GW decided that making other units as/more useful than commanders wasn’t a good idea. I’m going to have to sacrifice a lot of CP running purely off of vanguard detachments now.

            RE: “ANY hq spam” Tell that to GW with all their various psyker conclaves from 7th and the supreme command detachment in 8th.

          • Reecius
            Reecius March 7, 2018 1:42 pm

            Well, 7th is moot, but I get the point.

            And yeah, I agree, I do not like the Supreme Command detachment, either. Perhaps if you could take 1 in an army, sure, but I think it is silly to have 2-3 of them.

          • Earl March 7, 2018 1:47 pm

            The problem isn’t just that commanders were incredibly effective, but that crisis teams weren’t any better in comparison. A commander was about the same as 1.5-2 crisis suits, with similar role and the character keyword for defense.
            Instead of restricting the commander, adjusting some points and making crisis more competitive, would solve the issues. Also, maybe limit the hard points to two weapons and rest as systems.

          • Reecius
            Reecius March 7, 2018 1:53 pm

            Yeah, all good points. Well, for the time I would say the best thing to do would be to wait for the dex, play it and see how it goes, then if things need adjusting ping GW on their FB page and let them know (civilly and using specific examples) what you think would help the situation to improve. However, we should all see how things play out in reality with the dex in hand before jumping to any conclusions.

            For my T’au army I plan on using no suits at all because I want to do it differently, but that is just me and I know most T’au players want to use their suits/suit commanders/etc. so I do get it where the opposition to the changes comes from.

          • John March 7, 2018 2:54 pm

            It seems like the best policy would be to at least let them know starting now, with the materials that they have made available so far, as well as the concerns that we have based on what we have seen.

            The problem with GW’s rules system is the turnaround time; with a two week window before their FAQ comes out after codex release, the turnaround time for responses (I’ve had to wait over two weeks to hear back about when certain models were released, and that was between major releases) means that any questions that come up as a direct result of the codex on release, let alone with any real effort at playing the codex, won’t make it into the FAQ. If we start sooner, rather than later, then the rules people can at least start muddling over the issues.

            I agree that the Supreme Command detachment is the issue; in fact, it’s the source of any number of issues right now, and Tau commander spam (indeed, character spam in general) would have been fixed almost entirely by removing it, with the remainder only made viable for the opponent by the virtue of the units that were required to bring additional HQ models in.

            GW had a perfectly viable time to do it too, with the release of the Chapter Approved book. It wouldn’t have overtly nerfed anyone more than anyone else, it would have partially solved Commander spam (granted, while doing nothing to solve the core issue that caused it), and it wouldn’t have reeked of blatant partisanship on behalf of the rules creators. While not everyone would have been happy, it would have at least been fair.

          • CWDub March 8, 2018 6:25 am

            ^Gotta agree with Reece. One of my armies is GSC and I absolutely refuse to run more than one Magus/Patriarch/Primus which would make the army at least marginally competitive but would be a fluff abomination.

            Can’t help but remember people being reminded that something that seems “too good” to spam would be fixed and this is just yet another example of that. There is a TON of salt from some Tau players on the internets without even seeing a fraction of the book (10x worse than the salt we saw from the Eldar players pre-dex release; there’s dudes on Reddit saying they want to boycott GW).

  2. Dakkath March 7, 2018 1:37 pm #

    FE tenet is a total fair. Tau do not want to be that close to the enemy, EVER. Unless they’re doing a deep-strike alpha-strike. Except they CAN’T get that close with the current deep strike rules.

    Good Job GW [/sarcasm]

    • Ethan March 7, 2018 7:54 pm #

      Yeah, I do find it pretty ironic that in one paragraph GW states how FSE use manta-dropped crisis suits to great effect…

      … and then in the very next paragraph reveals an ability which can’t actually be used when a unit is manta dropped because of the 9″ bubble*.

      *Yes, beacons are a thing but few opponents are silly enough to let them get that close.

      • Dakkath March 8, 2018 4:08 am #

        Oh, and don’t forget (unless the wording changes), you can’t use a homing beacon with it because that’s a low-altitude insertion and not a manta strike.

        • abusepuppy March 8, 2018 4:31 am #

          Since they are changing the rules of the Homing Beacon, I wouldn’t be surprised if they also changed other parts of the wording.

  3. Pharun87 March 7, 2018 3:45 pm #

    I had hoped Crisis suits get 3+ BS because they are the Elite of the Tau army because they spent a lot of time as Firewarriors at the Frontline, survived and got additional training. Compared to some imperial guardsmen who survived 1 day at the frontline and get 3+ bs? I dont get it. And it would have solved the Problem of commander spam, because now crisis whould be an option to consider. But the same price for Weapons and the bad BS of 4+ makes then not a good option for our special Weapons. We are taking the Commanders because every other option in the Index was so bad compared to them in the intern balance. In extern balance the commander was only head on with options of other factions.

    Look at our Hammerhead with Railgun. He should be a monster against Tanks but only has a bit better Lascannon for about 170 points. The Predator tank is about 190 points and has 4 times the firepower. And thats only one example for the horrible external balance. I hope the FAQ will solve some of these issues….

  4. Beau March 7, 2018 6:24 pm #

    I have to admit… When I saw that first crisis suit drawing I thought it was armed with dual plasma dildos. I think I may have spent too long gazing into the warp…

  5. Mecha_buddha March 7, 2018 6:34 pm #

    If there is a Commander limit hopefully they bring back the Shas’el level of commander ( since marines now have Lt as a cheaper HQ option under commander). From what i am seeing the push to make Tau more stand and shoot is going to make a lot of people bored with the army.

  6. AnonAmbientLight March 7, 2018 7:15 pm #

    It seems to me that GW is giving T’au the Space Marine dex treatment. That is, they are taking the different Septs, and then separating them into “chapters”. Each chapter can be used with each other, but can also be used on their own and give you perks for taking them.

    For example, T’au Sept has most of the named characters, and of course specific Stratagems that are pretty good (Focused Fire).

    Whereas Farsight has a more melee focused set up. You have Farsight, who has a pretty damn good sword honestly. S8 -4AP D3 is powerful for a melee weapon that gets FOUR ATTACKS re-roll 1s. They’ll also likely get the Fusion Blades, another really strong melee weapon.

    This is pretty much how the Space Marine dex is divided up. This actually will allow for a more diverse list building option as well as more diverse list in general.

    What we are seeing now is a bandaid being ripped off. I agree that its hard to put the genie back in the bottle, but it has to be done for overall game balance.

    We still have to wait for the codex to release though to really see what’s in it. GW is taking an active role in the way the game is being shaped, so I am confident they will make changes that need to be made.

  7. Ethan March 7, 2018 7:49 pm #

    I kinda feel like the commander limit is just one of many examples where GW went against what I think the community had pretty clearly stated they wanted from this codex.

    There are a lot of other rumoured changes (which have been very accurate so far) surrounding things like JSJ, crisis suit costs, the markerlight table etc where I think Tau players clearly expressed their problems with the index, and what they thought needed to happen to fix those problems. But (if rumours are true) it sounds like GW has either not listened or chosen to go against what players wanted.

    Regardless of how well balanced or powerful the codex turns out to be (and it does look to be shaping up to be a pretty powerful codex), there are a lot of Tau players who will quite justifiably feel angry and disappointed with it.

    • abusepuppy March 7, 2018 11:31 pm #

      To play devil’s advocate here: what the players _say_ they want and what they want (or what is good for the game) are not necessarily the same thing. Tau players have said they wanted BS3+ on their battlesuits for a long time now, but I don;t think any reasonable player expects that to happen.

      I don’t believe the one-per-detachment limit was a good way to handle things, especially if it applies to all of the types of Crisis suit-wearing HQs that they have access to; Tau do not have a large suit of HQ options, so it makes taking a battalion or brigade very awkward if that is the case. There were probably better ways to handle it, and I expect that the playtesters tried to argue for some of those other ways- but GW does not always listen to its playtesters, either.

      • Ethan March 8, 2018 12:47 am #

        That is very true… I am thinking more along the lines of JSJ and re-writing the markerlight table, which were two things I think I think GW definitely could have done in a balanced way if they had wanted to.

        • abusepuppy March 8, 2018 4:34 am #

          JSJ for every battlesuit was never going to be returned. There was simply no way an ability that flexible and powerful was going to get returned to the army as a whole without seeing HUGE price increases.

          The Markerlight table had some stumbles on it, but on the other hand I think a lot of Tau players hated it just because they were used to making two or four Markerlight hits completely and absolutely devastate a unit. Markerlights are easier to come by now, but less efficient overall- that’s just the new paradigm, and a lot of Tau players don’t want to accept that. And, in GW’s defense, they _did_ change the ML table, just not the way people wanted.

          • Ethan March 9, 2018 12:26 pm

            I disagree, I think I definitely could have been done, even if it had to be reduced to 6″. It’s not even like 6″ would make a huge difference any more, considering the movement shenanigans many armies have access to now.

            But markerlights are something to have to pay for an keep alive in order to benefit from, as opposed to most other factions which are natively BS3+ and get to re-roll 1’s just by having an HQ around – who is still beneficial as a standalone unit and isn’t essentially a tax.

            The ordering of the table is pretty poor as well, it really should have 4 tiers max. As it currently stands, some levels are useless to most units (seekers), some are too situational to be that high on the table (cover). Even getting to ignore movement penalties is a bit too high on the table to count on.

      • Kevin Lantz March 8, 2018 2:25 am #

        yeah it’s extremely frustrating seeing armies FILLED to the brim with HQ’s that are potent, untargetable, and amazing force multipliers.

        Then as your index rounds the corner, your only potent HQ is restricted and you can’t play herohammer with the rest of them (as far as we know, maybe we can get a named storm surge and riptide =D)

        You can pick any army except for guard I think, (and even they have their own stand outs in imperial allies), and run as many of the HQs you want repeatedly. Want to run 8 deepstriking terminator armor clad psykers? go for it. If you’re tau, unless you want to run 8 ethereals or 8 cadres, you’re now a bit out of luck, at least the ethereal doesn’t give VPs anymore… And those guys have such stand alone abilities you totally want more than a few of em… (/sarcasm off)

        I do feel as people start having to deal with larger volume of boots to shoot at, people will drift from having more vehicles/big targets that were prone to alpha striking meltas, and the “hermergod meltas deepstriking ruined all my big guys with no invulnerables” will fade in the background…

        • abusepuppy March 8, 2018 4:40 am #

          Here’s the thing, though: while, yes, you can field 15 Ultramarines Captains if you really want to, _that isn’t a good army at all_. In fact, it’s a terrible army, as are most less-extreme iterations of it (12 Captains, 10 Captains, 8 Captains, etc.)

          But that isn’t true for Commanders. People not only could run 8+ Commanders in a list, they regularly did- and I think that GW realized that was problematic, as did the player base. I don’t think their solution was necessarily the proper one, but people are drawing false comparisons between the Commander and HQs from other armies when they ignore the fact that the Commander actually was a problematic unit in the Tau Index, whereas very few other HQs have been (and those have since been nerfed heavily- anyone still remember Malefic Lords?)

          The Commander wasn’t so bad that it was ruining the game, but it was good enough (and unpleasant enough to play against for many people) that it needed to be addressed somehow. People need to stop bitching about “how dare they change the Commander when other HQs weren’t similarly changed” because that completely ignores the fact that other units from those other codices WERE changed, just not the specific HQs because those weren’t the problematic units. We should instead be talking about _why_ the one-per-detachment limit is perhaps not the best solution to the problem, and what other kinds of solutions could’ve worked better.

          • Kevin Lantz March 8, 2018 5:53 am

            I guess my problem was that when you compared the commanders to just bog standard ig special weapons team dropping in and doing the exact same thing for less/same it makes me wonder what the real problem is. I will admit I never saw 4+ commanders since most of the Tau moved on… But there isn’t much that Tau does that can’t be anticipated easily.

            In our codex there was no reliable antitank that could be counted on to do the job for a reasonable price.

          • abusepuppy March 8, 2018 6:07 am

            The Index was pretty bad for Tau, I won’t deny that. But a Commander (who has character protections, Fly, etc) is pretty different from a Special Weapon Squad or similar options. And several of the IG units got limits- albeit not as harsh of ones- on how many you can take in a detachment also.

            If you’ve followed the rumors from other sites, I think it should be obvious that a lot of Tau units are vastly improved, including many of the battlesuits and tanks. And the Commander, though limited in numbers, doesn’t seem to have gotten any worse- which arguably makes them a stronger choice than if they had been increased in points, but were unlimited in numbers. I would most certainly like one Fusion Commander for 150 than three of them at 180 or 200 apiece.

          • Kevin Lantz March 8, 2018 8:45 am

            The problem is that the crisis suits which are the only unit comparable, at least in rumors, is unchanged. Price and effeciency changes won’t help us vs death guard artillery hiding out of los.

      • Burdcr March 8, 2018 2:26 pm #

        I hope you know one of the playtesters was Reece from ITC, who actively hates the Tau. I’m sure there are plenty of other playtesters that hate the Tau because of previous editions which is unjustifiable because this is a new edition and a totally different game.

        • Reecius
          Reecius March 8, 2018 2:48 pm #

          Dude, lol, what? Haha, what in the blazes are you talking about? I actively hate T’au? Lol, ok, please prove this statement as it is completely absurd. I await this most likely equally absurd answer as I continue to work on my brand new T’au army to go along with the new dex, lol.

          And yes, anyone who hangs out here knows I am an admin of the ITC and a play tester. That is no great revelation, friend.

          • Kevin Lantz March 8, 2018 10:38 pm

            Clearly you’re biased since you can’t objectively accept everything you like and don’t grouse about things might ultimately be toxic to the game.

  8. Kilomanjaro March 7, 2018 9:25 pm #

    I’d be fine with a 3 commander limit per army. I just don’t like having to bring so many detachments. Excited for what I heard about coldstar commander changes.

  9. Khyz0r March 8, 2018 12:36 am #

    I think we can all reliably guess the real reason for limiting the Commanders to 1 per detachment was directed at the Commander Spam army lists. While I too do not like HQ spam (unless its a bunch of Tyranid Flying Tyrants), there are better ways to fix the issue than dictating what models people are allowed to use when they have invested alot of time and money into them.

    The reason people use Commander spam is because plain and simple they offer a far better choice in points value than their brother Crisis Suites. Fix this issue and you won’t see Commander spam. There is plenty of ways to do, and alot of them have been voiced before. Crisis BS3+, or better markerlight system, or Commanders have 3 weapons + support, or Commanders BS3+, or plain and simple adjust the points values. All of which would be a smarter solution than an unthoughtful knee-jerk rule; of which if it stays should be similar for all codex’s.

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