iNcontroL’s T’au Codex Video Review

iNcontroL brings us a T’au Codex review! Check the Tactics Corner for more great reviews and articles!

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About Reecius

The fearless leader of the intrepid group of gamers gone retailers at Frontline Gaming!

46 Responses to “iNcontroL’s T’au Codex Video Review”

  1. iNcontroL March 13, 2018 11:33 am #

    Thanks for checking it out if you do!

    • Reecius March 13, 2018 11:36 am #

      Great review, buddy! Looking forward to more of these from you.

    • AnonAmbientLight March 13, 2018 2:58 pm #

      Hey, I’m watching your review right now. You have an interesting take on it since you haven’t played T’au before or know much about them. A different perspective is always a good thing because you never know what you might pick up on. This is especially true of certain things that T’au players may not be keen on, like close combat, or comparing weapons to other units.

      One critique on the method of filming if I may. I have seen GW ask other reviewers to not display stat-lines and rules prominently during video reviews of the book.

      • iNcontroL March 13, 2018 6:56 pm #

        Not the case mate! Stat lines are good to go. Thanks though!

  2. Nick Wenker March 13, 2018 11:42 am #

    I’m having flashbacks to State of the Game haha

  3. BLue March 13, 2018 12:24 pm #

    So someone who has never played Tau gave us a review….. seems odd! Will watch the video when I am home!

    • Reecius March 13, 2018 12:29 pm #

      He does a review of the book. Don’t have to be an expert to do that, you know? Might be cool to get another perspective. Hope you enjoy it!

    • iNcontroL March 13, 2018 1:11 pm #

      Imagine that? They are letting just about anyone have an opinion these days! Even random folks on the internet who have no credibility to their name 😉

  4. Blue March 13, 2018 12:38 pm #

    Hey I respect Geoff’s opinions and knowledge of the game, I know he has played against most all armies and can provide a summary but figured slacker Frankie would give his review since he was playing Tau in tournies for 7th! In most of my discussions with players for tau, on other boards, no one has been impressed with the codex. Seems they tried too hard to make everything normal for power levels, which sounds great, but not when its one of the later releases and most other codex’s have a few competitive power units. Looking forward to seeing your list Reece, anyway you can give us a rundown on what you want to run?

    • Reecius March 13, 2018 1:24 pm #

      Frankie doesn’t like to write, haha. We have to force him to the keyboard with pointy sticks!

      And part 1 of my list ideas and tactics actually just went live on the Warhammer Community site a few minutes ago, actually =)

      • NotreDameGuy March 13, 2018 2:07 pm #

        I read it and I will just I’ve my 2 cents.

        The vast majority of Tau players that I see on a multitude of forums (including advanced tau tactica)/in person do not agree with you Reecius. People play tau because they like the battle suits and they fast play style they entail. Thats what makes Tau Iconic, not mass troops. We don’t want to play like IG or Orcs. This is partly why so many Tau players are angry at this codex.

        • Reecius March 13, 2018 6:33 pm #

          Well, do people disagree because they don’t like T’au infantry or because they don’t think the T’au infantry are good? Sorry, not sure I understand what you’re saying.

          Also, if you don’t want to play infantry then don’t. I am not saying you have to or that it is the best way to play, just that that was the style of play I was going for as it seemed fun to me and different.

          • NotreDameGuy March 13, 2018 7:24 pm

            Most Tau players don’t want to play Infantry because its the battle suits that make Tau unique. Mass infantry is just boring since its already done (and better) by other armies.

            Crisis suits were left untouched this edition and they were in desperate need of some love. Add in the complete absence of JSJ, the increase in drone cost (which crisis suits need for wounds) and the still weak marker lights and its just a disspointment

          • Reecius March 13, 2018 7:50 pm

            Well, ok, that’s fine (although I do t know how anyone could speak for most players of a faction without collecting a lot of data, but I digress) but how does that impact an article series I’m writing about an army I am building based on personal preference? You said people disagreed with me…about what? My taste in an army build? As it says in the article opener, I’m purposefully doing something different than the normal T’au build and acknowledged that T’au suits are both awesome models and uniquely T’au. I don’t see how that has anything to do with me wanting to play an Infantry army and then explaining how I aim to make it work…

            If you, or anyone don’t want to play infantry based T’au, then don’t. Lol, that seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it? No where in the article do I say or infer that you have to, or should or that it’s the best way to play T’au or even a better way to play, only that it’s the way I want to play. So, sorry, but I don’t understand where you’re going with your comments in regards to this article? If you feel Crisis Suits are too expensive or under gunned or what have you, fine, you’re totally free to hold whatever opinion you choose but that’s not the topic of this article and I made no assertions about them in it so it seems a bit off topic.

            If you want to start a conversation about Crisis suits, please do. But it’s odd to say I’m wrong or off in my article about playing a T’au infantry army because a unit I don’t talk about in it is not good in your opinion. You can see how that’s a bit weird, right?

          • NotreDameGuy March 13, 2018 8:05 pm

            -Most signature systems increased in points for god knows what reason
            -Marker lights are still useless compared to previous versions
            -Still no JSJ
            -Crisis Suits remain vastly overcost
            -LImit on commanders, when no other army has such a limitation
            -50% increase in drone cost
            -Relatively weak stratagems and sept traits compared to other armies.
            -Railguns are hilariously weak compared to other armies when they are supposed to the best single shot gun.

            Yes, other things were buffed, but Tau where horrible in the index, as can be seen in tournament results. And after this codex they still will not be competitive. And in addition, all the fun, uniqueness to Tau is gone/overcost: JSJ, Markerlights/Crisis suits

          • NotreDameGuy March 13, 2018 8:07 pm

            I didn’t mean to attack your article or opinion. It WAS well written and had some interesting info. Its just frustrating because you are praising things in the codex long time Tau players don’t want or care about. There was a long list of things that needed addressing from the index and only a small amount was actually addressed (Riptide cost being one of them).

          • Reecius March 13, 2018 8:12 pm

            Fair enough and no hard feelings. It was just confusing for me as it seems like you have some angst about the book in general that didn’t really tie into my article specifically. The point of my article wasn’t a general comment on T’au or what have you, just me being excited about starting a new army that I have wanted to make for years (I’ve talked about doing a Fire Warrior horde sense like, 5th ed, actually painted the first test model for it way back then and he’s still on my desk today, lol!). When some friends at GW heard I was going to start a T’au army they asked if I would write about it for the Community site as the timing was great and I said sure, be happy to do it.

            I guess I am just coming at it from a different point of view. I wasn’t trying to compare what was to what is, just looking at the book now and seeing if I could make the infantry T’au army I always wanted to play viable and I really think you can. In time I am sure I will branch out to suits but for now it isn’t what I was interested in which isn’t an indictment of them, just preference really.

          • Dakkath March 13, 2018 8:47 pm

            I’m not a fan of the T’au infantry, and I don’t think they’re very good besides.

            Kroot cost more than basic imperial guardsmen, have worse saves, worse LD with no way to mitigate it, and the only things they get ‘in return’ are +1 str on their guns and a 7″ scout move at the start of the game that still has to be 9″ away from the infiltrators that your opponent already deployed.

            Strike teams CAN be good, but only when you start adding in so many characters that you’ve doubled their cost. Ethereal, fireblade, borrowing some pulse accelerator drones from a pathfinder squad, etc. I wasn’t a fan of deathstars in 5th/6th/7th and I’m not a fan of having to use that same mentality to make our basic troops go from trash to barely usable. Not to mention how vulnerable that makes them to large fast melee units, even with For The Greater Good. They may have a better armor save than the rest of the t3 troops in the game, but that’s not going to help them much when most armies are already capable of clearing out similar number of space marines and/or blobs of chaff three or more times more numerous.

            Breachers need to get within 5″ for their gun to be superiors to a strike team’s, but they forgot that they’re T’au and have one of the WORST melee profiles in the game. So if there’s anything left within a good 14″ after they’ve done their shooting, those breachers are going to die, and probably the devilfish that brought them up.

            Moreover, the codex didn’t FIX a lot of the issues that index tau have:
            -specialist drones are still able to be targeted with impunity, severely hampering the effectiveness of pulse accelerator, stealth, command-link drones, etc.
            -Crisis suits are not worth 42 points without guns. That combined with being only BS4+ was the reason commander spam was a thing. Because 2 commanders would cost less and be more effective than 4 crisis suits.
            -Likewise, Crisis suit weapons are generally overcosted and under-effective compared to their imperial counterparts. Flamers being about the only exception, being identical in cost and stats to imperial ones. However, with only 8″ of range that means crisis suits can’t actually use their flamers when deepstriking, and automatically hitting makes flamers a heavy consideration seeing as crisis suits are only BS4+. The codex did do something right by lowering the cost of burst cannons. Fusion blasters probably still need to come down in points because of, once again, BS4+. Missile pods are not worth 24 points, especially when compared to an autocannon. The biggest rub is the plasma rifle. Tau plasma used to be the only ‘safe mode’ which is why they were -1 str but didn’t Get Hot. But now imperial plasma guns can fire in safe mode at higher str, have the option for overcharge, and are CHEAPER than tau plasma rifles. It’s downright insulting.
            -Commanders getting limited to 1 per detachment is an arbitrary restriction that no other army has. That’s 3 out of 5 non-named HQ choices that are mutually exclusive with each other within the same detachment. If I didn’t want to run a fireblade or ethereal before, now I’m forced to. One again, what they should have done was make crisis suits (and their weapons) cheaper and/or more effective so they’d be a viable alternative to commanders.
            -On the whole, the army has no way to combat to-hit penalties. Tau already rely on getting multiple markerlight tokens on targets to even be comparable to the default shooting to other armies. A problem that is exacerbated by having no way to mitigate to-hit penalties. Other armies can use fast units to get in under the penalty range and melee doesn’t care about the to-hit penalties. But Tau don’t have melee units, the average WS across the codex is 5+. They only have 3 melee weapons in the entire codex, and all 3 are relics. One of which is on a named character, and the other two are exclusive to different septs. And the named character can’t be in the same detachment as the commander wielding one of the other two.
            -Likewise, Tau have no defense against psyker powers. Every other army (except necrons) either has or can ally with their own psykers for deny the witch. Some (including necrons) even have wargear or stratagems to help them fight psykers. Tau have neither.
            -Tau losing move-shoot-move means that for 3 of 5 phases of the game (psychic, charge, combat), we don’t get to _actively_ participate. I mean, yes you COULD charge with Tau units. It’d be suicidaly ineffective though.
            -Tidewall pieces still being fortifications means I have to use an entire detachment to bring one.

            Now, my complaining aside, they did manage to improve quite a few things
            +Riptide nova charges and gun profiles are improved enough to consider taking, especially with the new stratagems and the cost reduction.
            +Broadsides are now cheap enough to consider fielding, though you pretty much are forced to give them the Target Lock if you want them to be able to move and still shoot anything.
            +Seeker missiles being able to do more than one wound was sorely needed.
            +Sniper Drones able to do mortal wounds mean they now actually act like every other army’s snipers. (I personally think they should have gun switched them back to having rail rifles like in the 5th ed dex, but that’s purely opinion)
            -They still need 2 accompanying units to be effective though (firesight marksman and something with a drone controller)
            +Hammerheads, Skyrays, and Devlsifh all getting cheaper means mech tau is a thing to consider again.

            Wishful thinking: They should have given Crisis Suits obsec in vanguard detachment (even if farsight enclaves only) like they did with Leman Russes in IG spearhead detachments.

            Overall, the good just doesn’t outweigh the disappointment to me.

          • Reecius March 13, 2018 9:18 pm

            Then sounds like my list is not the one for you =)

          • Ethan March 13, 2018 9:01 pm

            “Its just frustrating because you are praising things in the codex long time Tau players don’t want or care about. There was a long list of things that needed addressing from the index and only a small amount was actually addressed (Riptide cost being one of them).”

            ^^^ This is, in a nutshell, the best summary I think I’ve read so far of how veteran players feel about the Tau codex. I’ve been playing Tau since 4th and I’ve just packed away my whole army, not because of how powerful I think the codex is or isn’t, but because I simply can’t play the faction the way I want to any more.

            It might be a strong codex, but I don’t think it will be a popular one.

            Also FYI Reece, I’d avoid mentioning that you’ve always wanted an infantry heavy tau army for ages. The internet is paranoid enough about you as it is, and having a play tester say he wanted something and got it in a big way does look kinda suspicious…

          • Reecius March 13, 2018 9:15 pm

            Oh my goodness, lolol, come on! I can’t talk about things I like? List ideas I’ve had? No, that is too silly. Play testers DO NOT write rules, lol. And I am one of many play testers, the rest of whom I do not exert mind control over nor have bent to my will in some nefarious way, lol. To think I would try make things my way for selfish reasons is firstly insulting, but moving past that, just plain wrong. I flatly refuse to not be enthused about something I’ve always thought would be cool to play and talk about it because someone may construct some ridiculous “Pepe Silvia” style conspiracy theory with red string pinned to old newspaper clippings all over their wall, lolol. I have dozens of list ideas like that that may or may not ever pan out. Just so happens the moon and the stars lined up on this one.

            If people want to cook up some silly theory based on a lack of understanding of how the development cycle works, go ahead I guess, but it is seriously comical. I don’t have that much influence and if I did in some alternative universe, my first priority would be to make a great game for everyone, not just myself, as that goal serves everyone’s bests interests including me as someone who wants this game to be as good as it can be for not only personal but professional reasons as well.

            And before you shelve your army, play some games. Sheesh, the dex is barely out, haha, give it a couple of reps at least. There’s a lot that’s changed with strats, warlord traits, sept tenets, etc. It’s not just about unit profiles in 8th, as I am sure you know. It’s way too early to pass judgement on anything. We are still firmly in knee-jerk phase at this point.

          • Ethan March 13, 2018 11:35 pm

            Haha, don’t worry it’s not me you have to convince, but you know what the internet in general is like. Any excuse to put on the tin-foil hat.

            If I was keen on Tau infantry, I’d be over the moon with this codex, and I think there’s a lot to like for those Tau players.

            But like I said, it’s not the power level or the combos in the codex that concern me, it’s if I can play hit-and-run Tau crisis wing the way I’ve enjoyed playing it since 4th. That play style died pretty firmly with the 8th ed index, and none of the things that killed it were fixed with this codex.

          • Ethan March 13, 2018 11:39 pm

            And I actually sort-of disagree with your statement that no-one can judge a faction without playing some games. Normal players yes, but veterans…

            Knee-jerk or not, none of the things suit players cared about have been addressed. That’s what I’ve been saying, that’s what NotreDameGuy and so many others in the comments have been saying. It’s just something you’re going to keep hearing for a while.

  5. Lang March 13, 2018 1:43 pm #

    Nice review Geoff. Looking forward to more stuff like this. Non-Tau player opinions are welcome for sure. Gonna be nice to dust off my tides and ghostkeels!

  6. GhostValley March 13, 2018 2:35 pm #

    Geoff – I caught most of the stream and enjoyed getting your initial reaction/response from the mindset of a competitive player and what you would see as optimal choices – but as you were saying during – 2 plus hours is a long time to talk and you were speeding though a bit to the end

    – 1 way to combat that could be to start at battleforged rules/stratagems/and warlord traits and then go through the units –

    But just my 2 cents – I enjoyed it and look forward to Necrons

    • iNcontroL March 13, 2018 2:45 pm #

      Yep, as you noted I already said this. Definitely going to shorten this up for you AND me! 🙂

      • GhostValley March 13, 2018 3:17 pm #

        It was still really entertaining and I loved the long pause with the exasperated cry of “why is this only 1 attack GW? ” In regards to the onager gauntlet – great television there!

  7. Blue March 13, 2018 2:55 pm #

    I mean anyone that can cause so much salt to come from Reece when they play must know SOMETHING about 40K right Geoff!!?? But as stated I started Tau years ago to play battlesuits and shoot the crap out of things, Tau does not do combat and will never do anything in the psychic phase… but most armies still have a way to deny powers… NOT TAU! How about those Necron leaks!!! sigh……

    • Reecius March 13, 2018 6:34 pm #

      lol, Geoff and I do indeed get salty sometimes when we play, haha

      • CWDub March 14, 2018 6:46 am #

        Geoff’s Nids vs. Frankie’s Tau (maybe with Reece borrowing them) for a video batrep soon?

        Salt is love. Salt is life.

      • Raxx March 15, 2018 5:10 pm #

        Hey Reece, sorry if this isn’t the place for this but I was curious if we were doing first floor ruins right. Is it any infantry is safe regardless of the actual buildings design, so like an open topped ruin they still would be safe from above on first floor? Or is it only the walls.

  8. Yakhunter March 13, 2018 7:16 pm #

    I don’t know who this Geoff guy thinks he is telling me what to think about Goat/fish people, but he has a well-kept beard and a surly demeanor so I immediately respect his opinion.

    Seriously though, wicked job, greatly appreciated perspective.

  9. Dakkath March 13, 2018 11:30 pm #

    Mr Incontrol, are you sure about your rating on Crisis Suits? They’re 42 points *before* tacking on any guns. 75 points for triple plasma, 105 for triple fusion, 66 for burst cannons, 69 for flamers (which they can’t even use after deepstriking), 98 for ion blasters, and a whopping 114 points for a triple missile suit. And you have to take a minimum of 3 of them per unit.

    I want to be wrong. I love crisis suits, they’e literally why I started playing 40k. But I just can’t look at those costs for a BS4+ platform and feel like they’d be any good. Even if they are t5 w3 3+ this edition.

    • iNcontroL March 14, 2018 12:17 am #

      Yeah dunno about them being really good or something but I think a couple units of them kitted out nicely CAN do some good. BS 4 with rerolling 1’s and actually being bs 3 with a few markerlights or a strategem that literally adds d3 is pretty good man. I think if we lived in a world where T’au was reliably shooting all their guns at bs2 or something we’d be in a rough spot WITH strategems, WITH septs and WITH warlord traits. Nobody else is doing that save for Custodes and we pay a bit more for guys who have 2 strength 4 shots at range 12 😉

  10. Addnid March 14, 2018 12:16 am #

    I play Tau (I have played them since early 5th, back then they had a 4th ed codex and it was NOT easy to win with tau…) as well as several other armies, and I think Tau finally have a codex that actually requires “using your brain”.
    It has always been my “easy to use” army, for playing games without putting much intellectual effort in. And I never owned more than one riptide hah hah.
    My first amry is tyranids, and we got a comparativelt great codex, much easier to use too than previous than in editions. Tau players have the opposite, and I understand that at first sight they feel let down. After 6th and 7th ed codex, which offered such an effortless play style, and after a very bad index, Tau players are offered a very subtle playstyle which WILL NOT work without clever combos and perfect target “prioritisation”.
    And I must say, I do not know if I’m good enough at ths game to pull it off (I don’t plan on spamming broadsides and riptides), but this codex makes me want to try anyway.

  11. Kevin Lantz March 14, 2018 2:33 am #

    I am severely disappointed that the markerlights don’t give ignore negative modifiers to hit when used.

  12. Kevin Lantz March 14, 2018 2:42 am #

    I am super surprised we didn’t get “ignore negative modifiers to hit” for our markerlights. Like the more I think of it, the more I’m irritated that wasn’t on the list. It’d feel a bit more unique and less “here are some abilities other armies get without rolling or paying for them or by simply having a guy they would take anyhow standing near them”

    I am also incredibly surprised we didn’t get a let a suit/infantry unit fire twice stratagem like soo many others have, although the +1 to wound is really sexy against elite armies.

    I also think sniper drones should of been reduced by about 5 points.

    • Yakhunter March 14, 2018 5:58 am #

      I agree on marker lights, I think it is a missed opportunity that would have been nice to have. Also, Viorla gets a shoot twice stratagem, but have to pick the closest target. Hoping they FAQ it to closest visible.

    • Venkarel March 14, 2018 7:16 am #

      I have been wondering about that, as you cannot really target things out of LOS in the shooting phase, it is not allowed. “In order to target an enemy unit, a model from that unit must be within the Range of the weapon being used (as listed on its profile) and be visible to the shooting model.” (BRB pg179). So technically the closest target is the closest visible target (when shooting in the shooting phase).

  13. Alex Harrison March 14, 2018 3:19 am #

    Codex is weak. Dissapointed that the iconic hammerhead doesn’t have double shots yet a leman Russ and fire prism does.

    Crisis suits are hilariously overpriced

    Mass infantry as stated is good but isn’t iconic to tau

    Ghostarks still average

    Riptides not worth their points in the meta they are weak

    No psychic defense or combat options yet they still hit on 4s ….

    Skyray too expensive for 1 hit wonders which statistically don’t even kill a rhino

    Commanders still beat thing in Dex yet limited (1st Dex to limit a unit absolute backwards by GW rather than make other things WORTH taking)

    Sept traits overall below average…only borkan worthwhile (mentioned in every build)

    From a UK perspective we arnt too happy. Tau have always been my favourite army as I’m a huge gundam and anime fan but sorely disappointed that this was the end result. They still have a JET PACK keyword which DOES NOTHING and the designer on the twitch show didn’t even know what the rules were….nor does he play Tau. Embarrassing. Hopefully the FAQ buffs them or this codex can just be the next orks….never seen at the top tables.

    • Rob Butcher March 15, 2018 6:14 am #

      Alex Harrison … I’m in the UK too ..
      Tau Commander spam were one of the least favourite armies to play against. All that firepower and not being able to target them ?
      Now the synergies in the Codex need to be used to win … not simply 12 models and lots of drones.

  14. Ishagu March 14, 2018 5:23 am #

    Some really Salty Tau fans in here! Yes, you all started playing Battle suit a few years ago because they were super competitive. Yes, the game is more balanced today.

    If you are un-willing to adjust and use all the available tools an army has, that is a self imposed restriction and not a valid complaint in regards to competitive playing!

  15. Zool March 14, 2018 9:28 am #

    Games Workshop always buff units with worst sales and the ones that everyone uses are untouched or even nerfed. It was the pattern trough the whole 8th codex releases. The xv88 broadside received the most buffs because it was the least used one. Plus they want sell infantry models too :).

    • abusepuppy March 14, 2018 9:33 am #

      Yeah, that’s why the Flyrant has gotten worse every edition so far.

      Oh, wait, nevermind. It’s actually been the best unit in the codex for five editions running, hasn’t it?

  16. GeekmasterK March 14, 2018 9:48 am #

    I’ll definitely be watching this later. As someone who has always loved the idea of Tau, but never actually run them, I’m in the same boat as Geoff. I will be starting a Tau army with this codex, so I’m judging it based on what the army is now, rather than comparing it to what the army was. Hopefully the salt dies down once the codex has been out for a while and people have seen what it can do in practice rather than just on paper. Remember, Mathhammer, while helpful for predicting outcomes, is no substitute for actually seeing it on the table. I’ll also point out that I know some veteran Tau players in my area who actually like this codex, as well as other people besides myself who are starting a Tau army with this codex. The internet always tends to make things seem worse than they actually are.

    Anyway, I’m curious to see a review from someone who hasn’t played Tau before, since, well, that’s my situation.

  17. GeekmasterK March 14, 2018 3:47 pm #

    Just watched it, and I can say that at least based on what I saw in the shown codex pages, I agree with most of what was said. I’m already formulating ideas for what I’d like to run. Again, this is from a guy who’s been playing the game for 10 years, but just starting with Tau.

    As far as the big Crisis Suit controversy goes, I’m sort of in the middle. Yes, Crisis Suits are not as spammable as they used to be, but I can still see them doing good work if used right. A couple deep striking Crisis Suit bombs with commanders to buff them is something I could see myself running. Not as the core of the army, but as something to throw at the opponent to force them to deal with it. The Crisis Suits may or may not survive long after they’ve dropped in and shot up their targets, but if they did enough damage, they’ve done their job.

    I’ll have to see how it works on the table, of course. I could be completely wrong on this after I’ve seen it in action, but for now, I feel like the Crisis Suits are better than they’re being made out to be, even if you can’t spam them in mass amounts for the points. I’ll pass final judgment after a few games.

    Good review, overall, Geoff! Anything I could critique about it has already been addressed. And yeah, I was scratching my head over a lot of the same things you were. I too, wish the gauntlet relic was a flat 6 damage. I’d actually run it on a commander if that was the case, and turn him into Saitama, from One Punch Man. Overall, though, I don’t think it’s a bad codex. There are things I would change about it, but I don’t feel like I’ll regret starting this army. And anything that needs buffing will get buffed in an FAQ or Chapter Approved before the year is over, most likely. We won’t need to wait a whole edition for that this time, at least, which is something I think a lot of people are overlooking, since GW never did that prior to this edition.

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