Guest Editorial: Codex T’au Post FAQ

 

Hi Folks. Will Betts here, T.O. Of “Scottish Take Over”  ITC Tournaments to talk about T’au in the new edition. Check the Tactics Corner for more great articles.

Recently I was able to run and take part in a 40k GT in Scotland, UK. The event drew many great players from the UK including ETC team members. I wanted to give the new Tau codex a trial at this competitive event and then give you all a great write up of what went on.

Now good and bad things went on once I dedicated myself to this.

The good thing that happened was I attended, won all my games, and won the GT with Codex tau. I then did you all a great write up about the event and posted it to Reece…on the day the world was told the FAQ was about to drop (Sad face).

Once the FAQ dropped I realized that it invalidated all the advice I was able to give you about how I won because the fundamentals of the entire game changed. I mean, I won with 5 riptides, and that’s certainly not possible now. Not to be too down, I decided to instead let you know that pre FAQ Tau can win a Highly Competitive GT, and now I believe post FAQ they can do the same.

About Myself

My name is Will Betts. I have played 40k since 3rd ed. Recently I finished rank 1 for 2017 in the UK and am currently rank 1 in UK for ITC this year too. I also finished rank 1 for Tau in the UK. Why do I tell you this? Well its not to toot my own horn, its more so you know the help I’m going to try and give you Tau players comes from a source of ITC, ETC, and all other Competitive events I attend using Tau. I may win most of my games, but I’m not a win at all costs player, so don’t worry there. I like a challenge, and I like to use armies that are considered to be lower tier. This is to prove that, just because an auto win build doesn’t jump out at you, you can still win events with any army. So, I’m going to run through some advice I think will help you build a good list after the FAQ and will give you an idea what I’m going to be trying out too.

Army Basics

First off, we know basically all events will use the max 3 identical unit choice, so this means now 5 or 6 Riptides. So where do we begin looking at a good list now?

Well firstly let’s look at the best Sept choice. There are only two Sept choices that anyone seems to go for, but in my opinion there is only one to take. Tau sept is simply the best choice in my opinion. While the Turn 1 charge is less of a threat, it is still a threat. Simply put, you are going to be charged, especially if you can’t be killed by shooting (I’ll get to that). Now you may not be overwhelmed by the Tau Sept ability, but lets do simple math. Normally you hit on 6+ in overwatch. Tau Sept hits on a 5+. That’s literally 100% better chance of hitting. Not only that, high damage suits with lots of shots (Riptides) can take an upgrade to make them reroll all misses in overwatch. How does this work out on the maths?

Normal Riptide; 18 shots; 6+ overwatch; 3 hits.

Tau Sept Riptide, with rerolls; 18 shots; 5+ overwatch; 6 hits. Rerolls. 10 hits.

As you can see, the combo of the sept and a single upgrade and you hit 10 times with a single weapon. Now imagine 3 Riptides with 6” of each other all overwatching!!  Suddenly you can see how hard it is for anything to make it into combat with you. During my GT I faced the Tyrant Spam list and killed 2 full wound Hive Tyrants as they Charged me.

That’s not all that makes the Tau sept stand out for me. The second reason is its HQ choices.

HQ

Shadowsun is by far the best Tau HQ in the game. Her ability to allow a ‘reroll all misses in a 6” bubble’ twice a game makes Tau extremely powerful. The fact she only needs to just touch the base of a single model in a unit to allow the entire unit to reroll is amazing. Her weapons are very good Monster/Tank hunters, and she herself is quite survivable.

Ethereals are also very good to compliment the list. They may have a few abilities they can use, but the best one is the 6+ fnp. Now while you need to remain still for it to take effect, the things you want to use the ability on will likely remain still anyway. They also give their leadership value of 9 to units nearby. This becomes very important for Drones, as a unit of 4 of less drones will never lose models to Morale.

Fireblades are almost a compulsory take in any Tau army when you take Strike Teams. The idea you can gain an additional hit at half range is super good. Especially when you add the fact the fire warriors are in Tau Sept. A 12 man Strike Team is looking at dishing out 36 shots in overwatch, again hitting on 5+. Let’s not forget the Fireblades bs2+ Marker light. The fact this dude costs 42 points means you can easily take three of them for strong access to marker lights. Add to this the Stratagem to gain more markers and you can get that all important 5 marker lights on a target with just these three characters.

DRONES

If you’re not aware, GW have now stated that drones purchased as part of a unit upgrade “Do not count towards the 3 unit cap”. This is extremely important to a good Tau list, as Tau need drones to keep them alive. Now there are lots of drones to choose from, but to me there is only 1 worth taking and that’s the Shield Drone. These drones are the bread and butter of a survivable Tau list. The way the Saviour Protocol works allows you to sort out the incoming fire power to best suit your army’s survivability. If the opponent fires at a Riptide (Which they will), when they hit with small arms fire, take it on the Riptides 2+ save and 6+ fnp from the Ethereal. When their hit by a lascannon, throw the wound off to a drone (Who you can hide completely out of site in a ruin as long as its within 3” of the Riptide). The drone takes a single mortal wound which it can now ignore on a 5+. The Survivability the Shield drones add to big suits is nuts. You can tank an entire gunline of firepower and then wipe them out in return.

In any army I build, I would always take 3 units of shield drones. They are far too good not to.

SUITS

A clear winner here are the Riptides. But what setup do you take?? Well this isn’t so clear cut. Now you’re only allowed 3 of them, you need to choose carefully. And then there is the upgrades to get right too. I think the Burst Cannon riptide is actually better than the ion tide. With 18 shots doing 2 damage, you can kick out 36 damage. The ion tide has 6 shots at 3 damage, doing 18 damage. That’s only half the amount the ion tide can do. But I know what your thinking, “The ion tide is further range, higher strength, better ap”. Well, yes, you’re right there, but you also need to look at the game in general and how games are played. First off, if you need to shoot something of high Toughness value, then your more likely to wound with the Ion tide, but you can also use a stratagem to reroll to wound as long as Shadowsun doesn’t fire. Let’s do a simple math hammer.

Shadowsun uses her reroll ability near riptides. You have a T8 target you need to kill. Let’s see the result using both types of Riptide rerolling to hit and to wound. (For now, let’s ignore any BS boosts you may have and do basic stat line and go with lower averages)

Ion tide. 6 Shots. Bs4+ rerolling misses. 4 hits. 3+ to wound rerolling to wound. 3 wounds =9 damage

Burst Tide. 18 shots. Bs 4+ rerolling misses. 13 hits. 5+ to wound rerolling to wound. 7 wounds = 14 damage

While Math Hammer only works out an average, it’s still pretty clear the better damage comes from a burst tide. But the other thing that makes burst tides better is the fact they can clear chaff, kill hordes, and are far more deadly in overwatch.

Secondary weapons for Riptides comes down to only Smart Missiles. With terrain being abundant, you want to clear those pesky little units sitting on objectives thinking they are save in cover.

Upgrades:

Now here is where you need to make a choice depending on the local/global meta. The first upgrade you should ALWAYS take is Advanced Targeting System. It’s a no brainer. But your second choice is not as clear cut. There are three that I like to use. First is the reroll all misses in overwatch. This effectively makes a riptide as effective in overwatch as it is in the shooting phase!! Or you may want an upgrade to allow you to move and shoot heavy weapons without penalty…. Or you may want +1 Bs against targets with FLY.

Now I am all too aware of the very strong Drukari and Eldar Armies that are in abundance with FLY keyword models. Also, Fliers are starting to appear more abundant, and they all have that pesky -1 to hit rule.

I believe, in the competitive scene, there is a stand out build for riptides.

Burst cannon, Smart Missiles, Advanced Targeting, Velocity Tracker. Because Riptides, mixed with the above HQ Options, won’t require to move for at least two turns, you are far better gaining +1bs in any way you can. The velocity tracker has had great use in basically every game of 8th I’ve played thus far.

Now, because we can’t take more than 3 riptides now, I wanted to get back that lost firepower while keeping good survivability. The FAQ has made a Tau unit shine with the 3 unit rule, and that’s the Broadside. These suits can be taken in units of 3, allowing 9 of these guys to be taken legally in an army. Best setup… well I think you all probably already know that one. Full missiles all the way. Tau commanders boasted 3 Missile pods firing 6 S7 ap-1 missiles. Broadsides fire 8 S7 ap-1 missiles and 8 SMS. They can take a single upgrade. For these guys I think the best choice is a shield generator. 4++ for a very cheap price of 8 points!! What’s more, these guys can take 2 drones each. So, a unit of 3 adds 6 shield drones to your list that don’t add to the 3 unit cap. Take all this firepower and add that to the riptides, then Shadowsun’s reroll, and you have a near unmatchable amount of firepower, and you can kill literally anything you want. (Yes, it’s a dice game so its not 100%, but your chances are very high)

TROOPS

Up to this point, I always took two units of Kroot in my army. This was for a fast, cheap, chuck away unit that could pre game move 7” and block those pesky deepstrike units (Yes I still use the term deepstrike). The FAQ has prevented a turn 1 Deepstrike…. But the threat isn’t gone. Simply deepstrike turn 2!! So you still need your defences. So, I think Kroot are still very good blockers and would recommend using them for this roll.

Strike teams are excellent. They are cheap; have great firepower; can take two drones per unit; and gain +1 shot half range via the Fireblade. You can hide these guys near objectives or use them to bubble wrap your suits. But these are some amazing units not to be overlooked. Especially when you charge a unit of 12 and get hit with 36 overwatch shots hitting on 5+.

LIST IDEAS

Well if you look at the above info, your getting riptides and broasides that reroll all misses, 6+fnp, 5+ overwatch, throwing wounds onto drones, surrounded by very shootie troops. The basis for a great army is certainly there. So what kind of list can I put forward as a basis for you to try out? Well I wanted to avoid sticking everything on a Skyshield platform to make it totally un-chargeable (Feel free to try it out though).

So, putting all the above info together, with ITC in mind, and current meta, I think the following is a very strong build.

Brigade Detachment

T’au Sept

HQ

  • Cadre Fireblade, 1x Shield drone 52pts (Warlord Trait= Through Unity, Devastation)
  • Commander Shadowsun 2x MV52 Shield Drones 189pts
  • Ethereal 45pts (Signature System= Puretide Engram Chip)

TROOP

  • 10 Kroot 50pts
  • 10 Kroot 50pts
  • 5x Fire Warriors 35pts
  • 5x Fire Warriors 35pts
  • 5x Fire Warriors 35pts
  • 5x Fire Warriors 35pts

ELITE

  • XV104 Riptide, 2x Smart Missiles, Heavy Burst Cannon, Velocity Tracker, Advanced Targeting System 278pts
  • XV104 Riptide, 2x Smart Missiles, Heavy Burst Cannon, Velocity Tracker, Advanced Targeting System 278pts
  • XV104 Riptide, 2x Smart Missiles, Heavy Burst Cannon, Velocity Tracker, Advanced Targeting System 278pts

FAST

  • 4x Shield Drones 40pts
  • 4x Shield Drones 40pts
  • 4x Shield Drones 40pts

HEAVY

  • Broadside, 2x High yield Missile Pods, 2x Smart Missile Pods, Seeker Missile, Shield Generator, 2x Shield Drones
  • Broadside, 2x High yield Missile Pods, 2x Smart Missile Pods, Seeker Missile, Shield Generator, 2x Shield Drones
  • Broadside, 2x High yield Missile Pods, 2x Smart Missile Pods, Seeker Missile, Shield Generator, 2x Shield Drones

Some of the benefits:

  • This list boasts 15 Command Points that you can regain via the signature system.
  • 6+ fnp available to the entire list other than the drones (That have it inbuild at 5+)
  • 3x Riptides and 3x Broadsides rerolling all their misses twice a game.
  • Enough chaff to block deepstrike and grab objectives.
  • Enough range to cover your deployment and control two thirds of the table (All you need to win a game via points)
  • Enough Drones to keep your suits alive against the strongest gunlines.
  • A warlord trait to make all weapons an additional -1ap at a specific target.
  • If you charge this list, as long as you placed your units well, you’re pretty much going to kill any charging unit.

Here’s a roundup of your fire power.

  • 20x S4 24” rapid fire
  • 21x S5 30” rapid fire
  • 24x S5 30” Ignore los, Ignore Cover
  • 24x S5 30” ap-1 Ignore los, Ignore cover
  • 54x S6 36”ap-2   2 Damage
  • 24x s7 36” ap-1  D3 Damage
  • 2x S8   18” ap-4   D6 Damage

I hope the information I have shared helps you all see the potential of the Tau codex. In my opinion they are a fantastic army.

I wish all you Tau players luck in your future games.

For The Greater Good

 

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87 Responses to “Guest Editorial: Codex T’au Post FAQ”

  1. Dakkath April 26, 2018 12:53 am #

    Personally, I find Sa’cea’s reroll more appealing than T’au’s overwatch. And I vastly prefer my tau to be mobile rather than a static blob. With Sa’cea, I can shoot a heavy 2 weapon (or 2 single shot weapons from one unit) and have a 50% chance to get both hits, 37.5% chance for one hit, and only 12.5% chance of whiffing before adding in markerlights.

    I’ve been theorycrafting the following:

    Sa’cea Vanguard:
    XV8 commander: 4x ion blaster
    Ghostkeel: ion raker, 2x fusion blaster, ATS, shield gen
    Ghostkeel: ion raker, 2x fusion blaster, ATS, shield gen
    Ghostkeel: ion raker, 2x fusion blaster, ATS, shield gen
    Stealth Suits x6: 2x fusion blaster
    Shield Drones x3, Marker Drone
    Shield Drones x3, Marker Drone
    Shield Drones x3, Marker Drone
    Broadside: HRR, SMS, TL
    Broadside: HRR, SMS, TL

    Sa’cea Battalion:
    XV8 Commander: 4x fusion blaster
    Cadre Fireblade
    Strike Team x5: markerlight
    Strike Team x5: markerlight
    Strike Team x5: markerlight

    Sa’cea Battalion:
    XV8 Commander: 4x fusion blaster
    Ethereal
    Kroot x10
    Kroot x10
    Kroot x10

    total 1992 pts

    Got 8 points left that I’m not sure what to spend on. I could swap one kroot blob for another strike team and have 20 points left, that’d get me another pair of drones. Alternatively drop a ghostkeel and the stealths for a 3rd broadside and a burstide.

    • Dakkath April 26, 2018 12:54 am #

      EDIT: TL, not ATS on the ghostkeels

    • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 2:48 am #

      I think it’s a bit criminal that you built a Sa’cea army and didn’t include any Firesight Marksmen- not only is it a BS3+ rerollable markerlight for 25pts, but it’s also a super-cheap character to trigger the Sa’cea strat (which is fantastic.)

      Stealth Suits are probably better in 2×3 rather than 1×6, for more space-covering. I also think they’re a bit redundant with Kroot, although with your weaker overwatch that may not be quite as true. Kroot could probably be consolidated into larger squads as well- large units are much, much better for screening because they let you choose where you pull casualties (and thus make it harder for the enemy to shoot a gap in your screen.)

      Fusion Commanders should definitely be Coldstars. Coldstar is really, really good for those handful of points.

      Not sure why you have the solo Marker Drones mixed into the squads?

      Ion/Fusion is a bit of a weird weapon setup for the Ghostkeels. I feel like you’re low enough on shots that Ion/Burst might be a good setup, or even Ion/Flamer, but I’m not wholly sure about that- you’re already stretching your supply of drones a bit thin trying to protect both them and the Broadsides.

      Also, you could convert this to a Brigade + 2x Auxiliary detachments (or Brigade + Vanguard + Auxiliary) pretty easily and come out ahead on CP.

      • Lemondish April 26, 2018 7:13 am #

        Agreed on Coldstar.

        I imagine it’s because solo marker drones make their own units, so the Sa’cea reroll helps them? I feel like Firesight marksmen would probably be way better than adding in a bunch of single drones, though.

        I think your detachment suggestions are a bit off (are you taking into account the FAQ errata change to Brigades and Batts?). Right now this list brings 1 for the Vanguard, and 5 each for the Battalions – combine that with your starting 3 and you’re sitting at a comfortable 14. A brigade is 12, but two aux detachments would be -2, bringing you to 13 with the starting 3. You do end up ahead with a Brigade (12), Vanguard (1), and Ax (-1), combined with your starting 3 thus bringing you to 15.

      • Dakkath April 26, 2018 9:14 am #

        RE Firesight Marksmen: They’re good, no doubt about that. But with all my embedded markerlights and access to 2 strats to add additional markerlights I didn’t feel the need for them.

        RE Kroot: I’m mainly using them to fill slots in that second battalion. If I were to blob them up I’d either lose 4 cp by switching to a spearhead or have to find the points for yet more fire warriors.

        RE Coldstar: Coldstars are good, but I don’t own any yet. Moreso, that’s 18 points I’d have to cut from elsewhere to upgrade a commander. 36 for both.

        RE marker drones: The marker drone is the same cost as a shield drone, and as they’re the only gun in each unit it gets the full benefit of the reroll. So, each drone unit is an ~55% accuracy markerlight to start the marker chains off with.

        RE ghostkeels: Sadly my ghostkeels are glued in this configuration from when I bought them back in early 7th. At this point I’m just trying to polish a turd because I can’t afford new models and I like theirs (same for the XV8 commanders, got tons of crisis suits but no coldstars). I may just have to drop one for that 3rd broadside, it’ll free up 72 points.

        RE detachments: You’re right I could do brigade+vanguard+auxilliary by dropping a ghostkeel for a broadside and 2 marksmen. If I also drop one squad of kroot for another strike team then that leaves enough points to upgrade to 2 coldfusions.

        • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 3:32 pm #

          You are really, REALLY low on Markerlights. Three BS5+ shots, one BS2+ shot. Yes, you can pop the Sa’cea strat for some automatic tokens, but that cannot be used to trigger the other stratagem, so realistically speaking you’re looking at ~3 MLs on one target and 1 each on 2-3 others. That’s just not enough when everyone is BS4+.

          Blobbing up the Kroot to 1×20 and then filling in the other two slots with Strike Teams would be the goal; you obviously need to maintain a good CP count. Strike Teams are good, it doesn’t hurt to have more of them- I’m running 9×5 in my current list.

          • Dakkath April 27, 2018 1:37 am
            #

            I also have the 3-4 strike shas’uis with markerlights, so I’m not THAT low I would think.

          • abusepuppy April 27, 2018 2:30 am
            #

            Yeah, you do also have them, but that’s not a whole lot more if we’re being honest. Your average Markerlight hits per turn, before stratagems, is ~3. That really isn’t a lot.

          • Dakkath April 27, 2018 7:37 am
            #

            Ah, well then. How about this:

            Auxilliary Support:
            Coldfusion

            Vanguard:
            Coldfusion
            Stealth suits x3: fusion blaster
            Ghostkeel: Ion, fusion, shield, target lock
            Ghostkeel: Ion, fusion, shield, target lock

            Brigade:
            Ethereal
            Fireblade
            XV8 Commander: 4x ion blaster; 2x shield drone

            1×20 kroot
            5×5 Strike Team: markerlights on shas’uis

            3×1 Firesight Marksman

            3×4 Drones: 3 shield, 1 marker

            3×1 Broadside: rail, smart missiles, target lock

            2000 points on the nose. Still not great on drone coverage but aside from dropping a strike team and splitting up the kroot to 2×10 there’s not a lot of spots to shave points, unless I downgrade the coldstars back to regular commanders. Admittedly I kind of want to do that just so I can actually run the models >.>

          • abusepuppy April 27, 2018 5:01 pm
            #

            Model availability is always an issue, but yeah, I like the look of that a lot better. At a first glance, I don’t see anything obviously “wrong” about it. If you decided to turn the Cold Fusion into regular XV8/85 Commanders, quad-CIB on them isn’t the worst thing in the world and saves you a few points, but it does mean you lose a lot of mobility. In the longer term, though, having 3x Coldstars is gonna be something you’ll need as part of playing the 8E Tau codex, so you should probably work your way towards it.

          • BK April 28, 2018 7:40 am
            #

            I’m toying with the idea of a single cheap XV8 commander for using the command and control node and drone controller. I know math wise the extra guns is often better on the commander, but it does save you a chunk of points and 1CP for re-roll wounds on a suit unit is nothing to sniff at when you need something to die (comes at an opportunity cost of course).

    • NinetyNineNo April 26, 2018 5:56 am #

      I’m pretty sure that math’s not right — it’s a single reroll per unit, so a Heavy 2 weapon at BS4+ (like a HRR Broadside) gets one shot with 75% to hit and one with 50% to hit (for an expected 25% damage increase versus non-Sa’cea, which is still great). Chance for two misses is indeed 12.5% (1/8), but the others are reversed, it’s 37.5% for two hits (3/4 * 1/2) and 50% for one hit.

      …Sorry, just a bit pedantic about this sort of thing.

      • Dakkath April 26, 2018 8:42 am #

        You’re doing your math for the shots wrong. There’s 3 possible results: 2 hits, 1 hit, 0 hits. You only apply the reroll to misses. It breaks down as such:

        no rerolls: 25% for two hits, 50% for one hit, 25% for zero hits.
        With rerolls:
        25% two hits no need for reroll
        25% one initial hit, reroll also hit
        25% one initial hit, reroll misses
        12.5% no initial hits, reroll hits
        12.5% no initial hits, reroll misses

        • NinetyNineNo April 26, 2018 8:32 pm #

          Oh, you’re absolutely right! I hadn’t considered that you can choose which one to reroll, I was just envisioning it as one shot with reroll, one without. My bad! I’ll keep it in mind for future calculations of the sort.

  2. that1guy April 26, 2018 1:32 am #

    I like the T’au Sept tenet too. But I’m also not a fan gunline style armies. I feel they’re vulnerable to negative to be hit armies who will successfully take and hold objectives while you sit in your deployment zone. You eventually have to take objectives too, which is where your castle crumbles.

    I also noticed that his competitive list isn’t markerlight dependent. I hope GW sees that as a sign that the current markerlight system needs more refinement to become an actual benefit to the Tau army instead of just highly conditional points tax.

    • Ty April 26, 2018 1:08 pm #

      Strange to me to suggest that an army not being dependent on one mechanic is a bad thing.

      • that1guy April 26, 2018 2:04 pm #

        I think you’re misunderstanding me. I’m not saying markerlights are great and that they’re a must have in every Tau list. I’m saying that they’re bad. Even with sa’cea markerlight units and two markerlight stratagems. It’s still pretty costly to fully markerlight more than 1 unit. And every point you spend on markerlights is less dakka in your army. Though I don’t like gunlines, I do have to commend the author for getting around the markerlight tax by utilizing 2 Kauyons from Shadowsun. It’s better to spend 167 points for rerolls on your gunline against any visible enemy unit then it is to spend 200+ points trying to fully markerlight just 2 enemy units.

        • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 3:35 pm #

          Markerlights aren’t bad. In terms of cost-per-benefit, they are very comparable to the reroll auras of other armies (Eldar, Space Marines, etc) and in many ways are more flexible.

          You don’t need to spend 200pts Markerlighting two units; Pathfinders are 40pts per squad, Firesight Marksmen are 25pts per model, and there are multiple stratagems. The realistic expectation most turns is to completely light up one squad and then put one ML hit each on another 3-5 units, depending on priorities.

          • that1guy April 26, 2018 5:32 pm
            #

            In the markerlight scenerio, its 78% chance to hit on 2 units and 58% chance to hit on however many units I can get a single markerlight on (like 5 maybe?).

            In the double Kauyon scenerio i get a 75% chance to hit on all enemies I can see and reach.

            I think it’s pretty clear that a flat 75% chance to hit is better. The only downside is that this will only work for two turns. But conversely with markerlights, you’re losing markerlight sources to enemy attacks each turn anyway.

          • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 11:04 pm
            #

            Character markerlights are relatively cheap, fill slots that often need a unit in them, and are quite difficult to get rid of. Used in combination with Pathfinders or Marker Drones, they can provide a very solid basis for improving a list’s potency.

            A double Kauyon obviously makes your units very dangerous in a lot of cases, but it also locks you into position- in any mission that is scored progressively, that is a problem. If there is enough terrain on the table to block LOS to significant portions of the enemy army (or even just the most important portions), that is a problem. The problem is not that you don’t have any good firepower, the problem is that applying it to the right targets is going to be harder than you think.

          • Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 11:29 pm
            #

            I feel like the author had a very fortunate meta to play against as tau. Being able to say “I took down to hive tyrants that charged me while they were both full health” seems like the opponent didn’t want to play with first turn charge screen unit (or two) which tyrannids are incredibly good at doing.

            Anyone that uses shadowsun and declares her better than any other HQ, I feel is just getting to castle up and everyone around them doesn’t know how to deal with it.

  3. abusepuppy April 26, 2018 2:40 am #

    I agree that T’au Sept is great, although I think you’re underestimating the others a bit- Sa’cea is definitely good for certain detachments, Vior’la you can build an army around, and Farsight is useful for certain niches.

    I don’t like Shadowsun, though- yes, you can reroll with her twice per game. But you have to sit completely still to do it, and you should already be dropping out Markerlights like nobody’s business, so you have access to basic rerolls already. Moreover, she takes up a Commander slot, so you’re giving up a Cold Fusion or CIB-carrier to get her, and I don’t think that’s gonna be worth it. I’ll definitely admit that it’s possible to build an army that uses her, but especially in ITC (where you need to be moving out to score those objectives) I don’t think she’s the first choice for most armies. The fact that you don’t even mention the other Commanders in your list of bet units is… baffling.

    Ethereals are okay. 6+ FNP doesn’t require standing still, though, that’s the reroll 1s option.

    I wouldn’t take more than three Riptides even if I was allowed to; honestly, even three is too many in most cases, I’ve never run more than two. They are quite fast and tough, but BS4+ means that they are essentially useless against Eldar armies (or anyone else with penalties to hit), which is pretty painful. I’ve found myself using Hammerheads instead- though they aren’t as survivable, they’re a lot cheaper and have pretty comparable firepower (thanks to BS2+ from Longstrike.)

    VT over TLock on Riptides… I dunno. You should be moving most turns of the game (although less so with a Shadowsun list, I suppose), which means the two will be equivalent against flyers and the TLock better against nonflyers. 36″/30″ just isn’t that far, it’s easy for opponents to range you out.

    You’re way, way, WAY overestimating the effect the 0-3 limit has on armies. It doesn’t affect troops, which are pretty much the only thing you should be taking more than three of. _Maaaaaaaybe_ Stealth Suits or Hammerheads, but certainly nothing else. Hell, 3×3 Broadsides is almost your entire army by itself, if you find that too limiting you’re probably playing an Apocalypse game.

    The list in the article is… I mean, geez, I don’t wanna be cruel or anything, but it’s got problems. You’re running a Brigade, which means you’ll usually lose the roll-off to go first- and you are surprisingly weak in a shooting-vs-shooting matchup because of the shorter range of your guns and general mediocrity of your anti-tank firepower. Broadsides and Riptides are good, but they will often struggle to hit the targets you want them to and your army has practically no Markerlights at all in it, which is completely unacceptable when you’re trying to hit on 4+s. How do you even pretend to beat an Alaitoc army with this? You are, even with an ideal setup for yourself, hitting on 6s and rerolling 1s/2s/3s, which is not gonna do a lot of damage. Your whole army shoots at one Wave Serpent and fails to kill it, even when you pop off multiple stratagems- that’s not a good sign.

    You really need some more heavy guns (e.g Fusion, Ion Cannon, etc) in this list, and you really need two more detachments to get yourself two more Commanders. Some additional screening would help, too- 2×10 Kroot is gonna fold up on turn 1, leaving you completely open on subsequent turns. Tau Sept/Greater Good will keep you safe from some stuff, but there are lots of ways to deny overwatch (such as hiding in buildings) and if you’re keeping your whole army within 6″ of each other you’re definitely not controlling 2/3s of the board.

    You’ve hit on some good ideas with the list, but I think you’re missing a lot of other stuff that is gonna be critical to a winning Tau army. And make no mistakes- I _do_ think Tau are capable of building winning armies right now.

    • Lemondish April 26, 2018 7:24 am #

      I got whiplash with your flip flopping in this comment 😛

      I kid, of course. But I noticed you disparaged the authors choice of T’au, then suggested using Longstrike (which can only come from T’au sept). You mentioned dropping markerlights like nobody’s business therefore providing no value to kauyon, suggesting there will be plentiful to hit modifiers already, but then you mentioned Riptides sit at BS4+, ignoring the effect of the markerlights you brought up. You mention 36” isn’t that far, thus trying to suggest a more mobile style is necessary, but then you mention how if you don’t move forward the opponent will and will thus control the board. Which is it? Is 36” not far and therefore you have to seek out an immobile enemy that will range you out, or is the enemy more likely to come to you to control the board, thereby 36” is perfectly sufficient? I’m sorry to say, but this entire comment reads as somebody focusing on negatives and ignoring positives in order to further a position that isn’t very clearly outlined.

      I would like to point out that the 0-3 limit would affect many of the ETC lists that ran heavy on Hammerheads. This guy’s winning 5 Riptide list also gets kicked to the curb, and a list filled with stealth teams that grab most of the board in deployment wouldn’t be usable either, despite that not being as popular as it surely was becoming.

      • Ty April 26, 2018 1:11 pm #

        “I agree that T’au sept is great” = disparaging T’au. This is why we can’t have nice things.

      • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 3:43 pm #

        Yeah uh literally the first line of my comment is “I agree T’au Sept is great.” I feel like you might want to try reading it again.

        Kauyon is obviously redundant with the initial ability of Markerlights, but not with the others. Ignoring cover and adding +1 to hit are both extremely valuable, and you can’t expect that every unit will be in range of the Kauyon (certainly not coming off a 25mm base), nor will your Kauyon be active every turn of the game.

        36″ can both be too short to get to an enemy gunline _and_ the enemy can choose not to come to you. Both players deciding to sit in their deployment zones and shoot is a plausible scenario, probably with the assumption that each side will simply intend to shoot to death any units that venture out into the no man’s land.

        ETC, because of the specialized nature of its missions and army lists, has always been about radically unbalanced armies. So yes, there is a lot of spamming particular units in it because you don’t need to be able to handle a broad array of different lists- it shouldn’t be taken as an indication of the state of the meta as a whole, nor of how armies function outside that environment. Also, I _explicitly_ mentioned Stealth Suits and Hammerheads as possible candidate for spamming.

  4. GhostValley April 26, 2018 4:24 am #

    (Puts on tinfoil hat) Nice try, Reece. Using your UK cronies to try and distract us from the clearly obvious Rip Tide nerfs you are planning for Chapter Approved. I’ve watched enough professional wrestling to know a work when I see one (hat falls off)

    Ahem.

    Thanks, Will, for a great article. We don’t get enough exposure of the competitive scene in the UK here in North America, so it is super intersting to read about lists doing well over there that have been written off here. I think it also can give us some insight into faq changes GW makes, as we can think of our tournament scene here as the end all be all, which is clearly myopic.

    I’m building a Tau army, but haven’t played against Tau since 2015, so will let those more competent than me debate the proposed list you’ve written. The list I’m building has a lot more markerlight support than you have though, which I’ve always thought was needed?

    • Reecius
      Reecius April 26, 2018 7:52 am #

      Haha, where’s Reecio when you need him?! =P

      • TheThievingMick April 26, 2018 9:02 am #

        Reecio needs to do this article, but for post-faq Astra militarum. Hint hint.

        • Reecius
          Reecius April 26, 2018 9:37 am #

          Just for the record, I am not Reecio, haha, but an article written by this mystery person would be quite funny!

          • TheThievingMick April 26, 2018 9:56 am
            #

            I want to read about his nefarious plan to make guard OP and ruin Tau.

          • Reecius
            Reecius April 26, 2018 10:07 am
            #

            lolol, I am sure it is both nefarious and devious! =P

          • GhostValley April 26, 2018 11:20 am
            #

            Until a week ago I had not realized how empty and unfulfilled my life was. I’m now filled with an unquenchable thirst for all things Reecio. It’s a problem.

    • Alex April 26, 2018 2:02 pm #

      If you want UK coverage, follow Glasshammer Gaming on facebook

      • GhostValley April 26, 2018 7:17 pm #

        Nice tip. Thanks.

  5. Shas’O April 26, 2018 5:22 am #

    How do you prevent your kroot screens from being surrounded?

    • Lemondish April 26, 2018 7:27 am #

      Like everyone does – clever selection of casualties.

      Kroot will always die because their unit sizes usually mean it isn’t possible to pile in to a second unit and tie it up.

      • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 3:45 pm #

        An intelligent player will avoid killing the screens by careful model placement and pile-in as well as selective declaration of charges; Kroot’s weak morale certainly means they are a bit more resistant to this than normal, but it’s a very dangerous game against skilled players, because it’s quite possible for them to trap the Kroot in combat after killing zero models, denying you any opportunity to pull casualties to escape.

        • Shas’O April 26, 2018 6:53 pm #

          Exactly. Stealth suits make great screens since they have fly.

  6. NinetyNineNo April 26, 2018 5:48 am #

    Nice writeup! Since you clearly know your stuff, got a few questions about current T’au builds and your example.

    Thoughts on a Hammerhead squad with Longstrike and Ion Cannons? Your list seems far too dependent on situational reroll auras for reliable anti-tank.

    Are Riptides really worth it? Looking at the Codex changes theybseemes to me to be brought up from “trying to lose” tier to “usable” tier, not “spam as many of them as you can and win tournaments” tier. Their firepower on paper doesn’t seem that impressive. What makes up the difference? Durability? Mobility?

    Thoughts on a Sa’cea or Bor’kan detachment? The former is great for single-ML characters, as well as HRR Broadsides (and technically Railheads, but those are atrocious), and the stratagem is aces. The latter I’ve mainly seen people talk about for FW gunlines with a PA Drone for 21″ RF range and an Y’vahra or three with 14″ super-flamers.

    WAAC or not, Commanders are still incredible (and literally half the relics and WTs are only useable by them, and they’re one of the three HQ options for non-T’au armies…). So much that I’d say Shadowsun presents a significant opportunity cost since she locks you out of one, amd yet you aren’t including any. Is that only because you mentioned you like weird suboptimal builds?

    Lastly, Crisis. Would you ever take them and why?

    • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 3:51 pm #

      Hammerheads are good. I wasn’t a huge fan of them initially, but they are reasonably tough, fairly cheap, and put out a lot of very accurate firepower. Tau desperately need guns that work on things with penalties to hit, and Hammerheads fill that role well.

      Riptides are solid, but not game-breakers. Their firepower per point isn’t exceptional, but they are _extremely_ tough to bring down (possible 2+/3++ with drone interventions), and the Fly keyword makes it impossible to trap them. Also, Stimulant Injectors mean they virtually never degrade.

      Sa’cea has a lot of good tricks, I think it’s often worth trying to sneak a small Sa’cea detachment into an army for those solo shots, as you mention. Bor’kan I am less sold on; that 6″ bonus is nice, but doubling your overwatch potential is better, in my opinion. Y’varhas are a bit of a trap and hugely expensive, which would be the other reason to run Bor’kan.

      Crisis are… maybe occasionally worthwhile? A unit of CIBs using the Farsight stratagem hits pretty hard on the drop. I haven’t played with it a whole bunch, but Paul McKelvy seems to be having at least some success with his.

      • Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 7:04 pm #

        If the forge world variants get the heavy burst cannon… That will be what’s up

        • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 11:05 pm #

          Oh man I would love to have the Burst Hammerhead get an updated profile on its gun. I might not run all of mine as those, though, because it’s a fair bit (~50pts) more expensive than the Ionhead is, but definitely at least one or two of them.

      • Ken April 27, 2018 1:48 am #

        Sorry Abusepuppy, but could you please explain the “Hammerheads are good” bit? I’d dearly love them to be, but they just… aren’t. They are reasonably accurate for Tau, but their fire output is very low. Leman Russ outperform them, and Predator Annihilators have upwards of 300% damage output of a Hammerhead for only about 30pts more.

        With Longstrike they are better, but that’s only going to last a turn – every lascannon in your opponent’s army will be targeting Longstrike Turn 1, and he won’t survive.

        I’m a treadhead and really want to field my Hammerheads, but the maths just doesn’t add up. I’ve unfortunately had to replace them with Broadsides and Riptides.

        • abusepuppy April 27, 2018 7:35 am #

          So, okay, let’s qualify this: Hammerheads in Tau Sept are good because of Longstrike, and because Tau need a way to deal with units that have penalties to hit. It just doesn’t work to roll over and die to Eldar, Alpha Legion, etc, and that is often what will happen if you don’t have any units with good Ballistic Skill in your army. Commanders obviously count, but you can’t bring more than three of them- and you don’t really have a lot of other choices. Hammerheads fill that role effectively, and are fine outside of it as well.

          A Hammerhead, presuming the Longstrike buff, actually outperforms many variants of the Leman Russ- in particular, the Battle Cannon/Executioner Cannon versions, which it compares most directly to. Its main gun firepower is superior (by about 15%, even with the Russ getting double shots), its secondary guns are likewise superior (by an even larger margin), it has fairly close survivability and cost, and it has the very important advantage of Fly, so it can be locked into combat.

          Now, obviously people are gonna target Longstrike first to deny you the buff, but with 13 wounds and a 2+ save (after cover, which should be simple to get on most boards) it’s hardly trivial to bring him down. Even once he’s dead, 3+ rerolling 1s is a very respectable accuracy on its own, more than enough to fight through the midgame as needed. A Hammerhead won’t win a straight shooting war against other main battle tanks due to its hybrid armament, but that’s not really what it’s for.

          (Incidentally, it should take ~13 Lascannons to kill Longstrike, assuming they are BS3+. That’s three full Dev squads making their shooting at him and popping Cherubs.)

        • NinetyNineNo April 27, 2018 2:06 pm #

          Are you considering Railgun or Ion? Railheads are atrocious, but Ionheads are competitive to other MBTs for their cost, especially with support.

          • Ken April 27, 2018 5:29 pm
            #

            I think you have to look at the Ionhead – as you say Railheads are a poor unit, easily outperformed by a Leman Russ.

            Even looking at the best case situation, an Ionhead is broadly equivalent to a Leman Russ Executioner/Battle tank with triple heavy bolter as secondaries. Basically the same price, secondaries are very comparable, Ionhead has better mobility but is offset by the Russ’ T8 – very useful against all those overcharged plasma guns out there. Main armament similar but the extra shots put the Russ ahead in most situations.

            Yes, Ionheads are much improved when Longstrike is around, but this is offset by Leman Russ benefiting from Imperial Guard doctrines and a Tank Commander or Pask.

            I think it really ends up being a wash. So if you were to say that the best version of the Hammerhead is equivalent to a Leman Russ I suppose the question is “are Leman Russ ‘good'”. Based on all the batreps I’ve seen I have them pegged as average, and that’s with much greater scope for optimised loadouts than the poor old Hammerhead.

            And yeah, Railheads have been treated pretty rough this Ed. Real shame because that railgun is both iconic and awesome looking.

          • abusepuppy April 29, 2018 5:01 am
            #

            > but the extra shots put the Russ ahead in most situations

            Actually, that isn’t true. Remember, the Ionhead is hitting on 2s, whereas the Russ is hitting on 4s- that means even though the Russ is getting twice as many shots (presuming it only moved half speed), the _effectiveness_ of each shot is pretty similar, and the Ionhead has a superior profile on its gun (fixed 3 damage rather than d3.) Moreover, an Ionhead that needs to move at full speed (to claim an objective, escape combat, etc) takes only a small penalty to its accuracy, whereas the Leman Russ drops drastically in effectiveness.

            The secondary armament also heavily favors the Ionhead, as it is more accurate (BS2+ vs BS5+) and has arguably better rules (ignores cover/LOS instead of AP-1.)

            Guard tanks can, of course, benefit from Doctrines and Tank Orders, but Tau tanks can benefit from Markerlights and Sept abilities, so I think the trade is pretty even there.

          • Reecius
            Reecius April 29, 2018 3:03 pm
            #

            The fly keyword alone gives the ionhead the advantage. And for another point, you see ionheads in winning lists, you don’t really see Leman Russes in winning lists

  7. Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 8:04 am #

    You remember that you can’t for the greater good more than once a turn right?

    • Will Betts (Author) April 26, 2018 8:33 am #

      Yeah I know that. But the specific target can overwatch as many times as you charge it. But its still a hell of a lot of overwatch to get through

      • Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 9:16 am #

        Yeah that’s why good players charge with multiple things

  8. Will Betts (Author) April 26, 2018 8:32 am #

    Hi Folks.
    Since I wrote the Review above, Tau have won another GT here. Good times.

    So lots of comments about my write up. There are a lot of folk that seem to critique my write up….then contradict their own advice, but I think “Lemondish” above got to all that lol.

    First off id like to point out I am not telling you how you “Should” play Tau, I’m suggesting how you “Can” play Tau. There is no perfect list, and you cant write any advice for 40k that will please everyone.
    My army choice is what I feel best deals with the current meta, but its also an army I have many years of experience using and have adapted my list to suit my play style. But if anyone wants to use something totally different then go for it. Its good to have variety, and If folk want a mobile Tau army, or use a different sept, then that’s all good.
    A bit of advice id give before you write a comment that starts with “How would that list deal with……” Remember there is no list that can counter every list. So if your about to write a comment about something a list cant handle, its because your brain shot straight to the best counter and way to beat it. But remember that’s not how tournaments work. Its random who you face. So custom building a list in your mind to counter one you see written down is kind of a void point as that’s basically custom building an anti list.
    That said id like to address a few point above.

    Dakkath:- Your list is a good one. There is a lot of negative to hit abilities going on there. But ive always found damage output from Ghostkeels are not that good. Also the Stealth drones are an easy target and remove some survivability of the keels. That said you may have tactics and play style that make your list super effective, so I wish you luck using it and let us know how it goes.

    Abusepuppy:- You had quite the dig at my list, so I thought id touch on a few.
    First off you say no marerlights is “Unacceptable”, Well maybe for you, but ive literally never needed them. You say hitting on 4+ is a bad thing and how can I beat an elder army with it? Well ive actually beaten them a lot, in fact ive never lost to Eldar. I think you vastly underestimate the damage the army can do, and you also seem to underestimate how effective Tau shooting is. I cant touch on every negative you raised, but I can quote the great Reece and say “How can you put it down if you’ve not even tried it”. It seems obvious by your comments that you haven’t tried it out yet, so I think it would be a good idea to do so and see how you get on. Also its important to remember that the list is not as important as the player. A good player knows how to handle the list and take on, what can be seen as hard counters.
    Give it a try, ya never know, you may like it.

    Ninetynineno:- Hammerheads have a great firepower output. Its a build that is going to be very good in the current meta. I honestly haven’t tried t since the faq yet, but ill get back to you when I have.
    Riptides are 100% worth it. They are survivable, fast, have fly, have great firepower, abuse the drone abilities, and frankly the best unit for me right now. Its the fact they can do a bit of everything that makes them so good.
    I take shadowsun because of my specific builds, she best compliments them. Normal commanders are still good for sure, but they don’t have the same firepower as riptides, and the best way to boost riptides is shadowsun, hense my specific build.
    Crisis suits. Well the faq made them less effective, but they are still expensive for what they do and how well they survive. Though I must say it would be sunny seeing the power of 9 crisis all with missiles and rerolls giving hell. But we are talking 1000+ points there.

    Keep commenting and ill try to answer questions best I can.
    Remember… Play any army and style you fancy. I’m only giving my personal advice on my experiences.

    • Doko April 27, 2018 6:53 am #

      Hey,good article and i enjoyced reading it.

      I like shadowsun and your list have logic but i see one big problem:objetives

      Turn 1 with kroots you can have 2\3 of the objetives,but then turn 2 and onward kroots are dead and you gonna control 1\3 of the objetives doing only per luck win a objetive game.

      I really like your list but i think a mix of some xv25 for objetive control would be better and not rely in luck of get cards in your deploye zone

  9. Zool April 26, 2018 8:57 am #

    The AX-39 sun shark bombers are not bad too. Strange people dont use them. The pulse bomb rule is nasty against large infantry blobs and u can drop it each round which is unique. The 4+(5+ on non infantry) mortal wound roll on max 10 models is strong. U can also fly over models locked in combat and still smite bomb them, the bombing condition is just flying over enemy unit. And u can fly over a single unit 3 times with 3 shark bombers. Blob of 30 orks, 3 bombing runs and u have 30 dice rolls with mortal wound on 4+.
    4+ markerlights and u can overcharge the four ion rifles for heavy 4xD3 shots 8S -1AP 2D. It has also one missile pod and 2 seeker missiles.
    For 192 points its not hard to fit at least one in any army.

  10. KRQuinn April 26, 2018 8:59 am #

    Hrmm

  11. Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 9:13 am #

    I will second the lack of need for markerlights, that being said with stratagems and what not, there is no reason to not plan on getting 5+ on a target with how cheap it is to do now.

    It sounds as if the matchups you had we’re favorable, in addition to the tyrannids blindly charging you, what other opponents did you play

  12. that1guy April 26, 2018 9:20 am #

    I think I’ll steal your Shadowsun gunline tactic. I only have to be a gunline for the first 2 turns anyways. While list building, I had hoped the markerlight table would finally be viable with Sa’cea. But I’m not feeling it. It’s still too expensive and conditional. The more markerlights I bring, the less dakka I have overall. So yeah, I’ll probably settle for 2 kauyons instead trying to make the markerlight tax work.

    • Kevin Lantz April 26, 2018 9:22 am #

      If all you want are strategems mix septs in one detachment, viorla cares about faction of the unit not detachment, same with sacae toss in a farsight commander and/or xv9s and you can use hot blooded, drop zone clear, and markerlights strat all together

      • Dakkath April 26, 2018 9:35 am #

        If you mix septs within a detachment you lose access to the sept tenets.

  13. William Betts (author) April 26, 2018 9:25 am #

    Id like to point out i did not write this comment. Sadly there is a very pathetic person here

  14. Will Betts (Author) April 26, 2018 9:30 am #

    Comment was removed.

    Id like to apologise for the rude comment above. (If its still there as its been reported).
    A sad person is pretending to be me.

    • GhostValley April 26, 2018 11:18 am #

      Didnt read the offensive comment as it has been removed. The Anti-Tau Conspiracy Faction is clearly stooping to lower depths.

    • TheThievingMick April 26, 2018 11:22 am #

      I thought it was a joke from you at first. I laughed a little bit.

  15. Will Betts (Author) April 26, 2018 11:23 am #

    Kevin lantz:- i played against deamons, tyranids, admech, drukari and custodes.

  16. BK April 26, 2018 2:14 pm #

    Thanks for the article, interesting stuff!

    Personally I’ve enjoyed running a mobile list with 3 ghostkeels, 12 stealth suits and 3 commanders with a bunch of drones and some supporting troops. I’m not going to claim anything about its effectiveness as I don’t play tournaments but I do like the way it plays so far with the new codex.

    Ghostkeels and stealth suits don’t have great damage output, but they do create spaces for your coldstars/commanders to play in and aren’t easy to dislodge. I’m finding that I can take the middle of the board early on and that the army has a nice mobility to it.

    I quite like marker drones as they can markerlight targets and take wounds for suits. One potential downside of that is opponents ignoring the ghostkeels and stealth suits and instead targeting down the marker drones which is the smart play imo.

    Overall like I say, for me personally my experiences thus far are quite positive and I am enjoying the new codex.

    • Will Betts (Author) April 26, 2018 3:13 pm #

      Good to see the Ghostkeels are working for you. What setup do find most effect with them??

      • BK April 26, 2018 10:50 pm #

        I’ve only tried Cyclic Ion Raker, 2 fusion blasters, target lock and shield Generator to date. The shield generator for 8pts is a given for them imo. I like the target lock as I move them a lot and can’t always rely on 5 marker hits on a unit.

        I have tended to start the 3 keels next to each other. The drones die unless you have a Los blocking piece of terrain so you can’t really count on them. In my mind the ghotkeel is -1 to hit with 6 -1 to hit drones that have to die first

  17. Rubikahn April 26, 2018 3:22 pm #

    Very much so enjoyed the read! What are your thoughts on the Y’vahra, as Bor’kan? Biggest issues I see are the big point investment and the inability to deliver drones to it the first turn, but the way I have sort of bypassed the latter is by infiltrating stealth suits with attached shield drones. The damage output is nice, and nobody wants to charge it with the flamer it has.

    • Will Betts (Author) April 27, 2018 1:33 am #

      I love the yvara. It does have quite the points input for sure. But you really get a lot of punch for your points.
      The issue with it is it doesn’t have in built manta strike, but given you cant manta beyond your deployment zone turn 1, this is less of an issue.
      Im borkan you can simply put it on table turn 1, thrn use its ability to jump off table. Keep some shield drones in reserve. Turn 2 it comes down in range thanks to borkan, and shield drones with it.
      This gives you some great fire power and survivability in your opponents face he cant ignore.
      I also like to have a cheecky unit of FW Technical drones. They can hide behind los blocking terrain, then fly out to repair your suits. Along with the stratagem you can repair 2D3 wounds on your tide. Handy trick

    • abusepuppy April 27, 2018 2:39 am #

      Y’varhas hit hard, but I think they’re a bit of a trap. Most Tau units don’t want to be jumping into the enemy’s face on turn 1 (or even on turn 2)- that leaves your Y’varha out there, alone by itself. Sure, you can put drones with it- but any competent list should be able to get rid of most of those drones in pretty short order, and if they can’t they didn’t really stand a chance anyways. So it’s your one or two Y’varhas versus the entire enemy army, and regardless of how good a unit it might be that isn’t a fight that it’s gonna win. It also can be screened out pretty easily if you use its Escape Thrust, so the enemy can keep it away from their important units.

      • Kevin Lantz April 27, 2018 2:48 am #

        I think this is one of the reasons a lot of people feel this way. I’m of the strong opinion that at least with the current meta they are just too good right now vs all but hoards, and even those aren’t embracing the pure hoard thoughts and adding anti tank into a few elite spots you can nuke.

        I’m actively working hard on creating a hoard tau list, but man I need about 140 more firewarriors. At any rate until the meta shifts, the yvharas are going to be amazing sauce.

        • abusepuppy April 27, 2018 7:22 am #

          Mmm. I think they’ll be about like they were before- very good at what they do, but don’t synchronize well with the rest of the army, and thus mostly only making it to the middle and upper-middle tables.

  18. J'oe April 26, 2018 5:24 pm #

    Any thoughts on Dal’yth post FAQ? Feel like the went from bad to in the conversation, especially if you’re using different septs in detachments.

    • abusepuppy April 26, 2018 11:08 pm #

      Dal’yth is tricky because it wants to sit still, but sitting still is often not an option in many games. It does give you protection against an enemy alpha strike, which can be pretty handy, and it makes Fire Warriors absurdly tough (7pts for a 3+ save? yes please), but the fact that you can’t use it in combination with Shadowsun makes it feel like a thumbs down overall. I can see it possibly getting some use from particular detachments, though.

    • Will Betts (Author) April 27, 2018 1:39 am #

      Dalyth does require a specific build. Its tricky to have it work great for your army. But there are advantages to it for sure.
      For a start if you want to use something with a good save, but you don’t want it stuck in a building for cover, well you dont need to now. So its good for something that doesn’t need to move, so I would use it for a specific detached ratger than your entire army. For example if your using a stormsurge, thats a 2+ save stormsurge. A riptide goes 1+ save. Very useful. But does it outweigh tge benefits of the other septs…. think only practice can tell

    • J'oe April 27, 2018 2:22 pm #

      I feel like there’s a few good Septs, and all favor certain units/builds. Missilesides for T’au or Borkan; Railsides for Sa’cea. etc. And an argument for mixing septs in different detachments. Thanks for the responses and thoughts.

  19. CrazyAiai April 27, 2018 1:41 pm #

    Shadow sun can only call a monka once. She can just do it, even if one has already been called.

    • William Betts (author) April 28, 2018 2:48 am #

      She has two abilities.
      One ability is calling kanyo.
      The other is calling kanyo even if its been called.
      So make sure you call these abilities in order and you can 100% call kayi twice.
      (Trust me this is correct)

      • CrazyAiai April 28, 2018 8:11 am #

        Just read it again, and yes your right! I just read the special ability and seemed to miss the other. Dunce moment!

  20. Marandamir April 27, 2018 2:26 pm #

    ***When their hit by a lascannon, throw the wound off to a drone (Who you can hide completely out of site in a ruin as long as its within 3” of the Riptide). The drone takes a single mortal wound which it can now ignore on a 5+***

    I’m a bit confused. When you fail the save against the lascannon why are you not rolling d6 damage on the riptide? I’ve been playing it where a 3 damage hit would kill off 3 drones.

    • Kruso April 27, 2018 9:12 pm #

      You roll to wound against the suit and if it is a succesful wound you then get to decide if you use suits save or use saviour protocols and try to take it on the drone. You don’t get to save first, then pass it on drone.

    • William Betts (author) April 28, 2018 2:55 am #

      So lets say your suit is targetted and wounded by a lascannon. Before you roll the damage for a lascannon, you get to roll a 2+ for saviour protocol.
      If you roll a 1, the suit takes the hit and you roll saving throws and damage as normal.
      If yiu roll a 2+, the drone takes the hit.
      At this point, ALL THE DAMAGE from that hit is treated as a single mortal wound.
      A shield drone gets a 5+ fnp against this.
      So if a drone takes a hit from any multi damage weapon, you never roll how much damage it does.

      • Venkarel April 28, 2018 4:14 pm #

        Yep Tau are different and special in this regard, most armies pass of the damage not the wound.. It is an incredibly powerful mechanic as those who experiences LoS in 7th know..

      • Marandamir April 28, 2018 8:12 pm #

        Thanks for this clarification. I went back and reread the rule and sure enough I just didn’t make that connection. I always thought riptides were trash costing like 300+ pts and they’d die to a couple lascannons. Now they are basically immune to big damage guns until the enemy clears out the drones first 😛 Nice.

  21. BK April 28, 2018 7:33 am #

    What do people make of the Devilfish? I find them pricey, but they do cut down on drops and are durable enough. Big model as well for blocking movement / screening.

    • Dakkath April 28, 2018 11:48 am #

      I’d say you need at least two of them filled with either breachers or strikes and a fireblade. Probably in a list that’s also running hammerheads and a riptide to draw away some of the enemy heavy firepower.

  22. Will Betts (Author) April 29, 2018 4:37 am #

    Devil used to be a good counter to alpha strike shooting your troops off a board. But now they are very useful for moving ob sec units to objectives. They can take some hard hits protecting your troops.
    Also a good way to get those breachers in close to make the most of their guns abilities

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