Kirb your enthusiasm!

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Monday, July 5, 2010

Email in: Tau Tournament Help


"HI Kirb,

I just discovered your blog and I read lots of posts about Tau. Great work and very helpful by the way. I appreciate the time you put into something that is easy to follow and thorough. 

I've been playing Tau for years and found a lot of success in a fully mobile build, up until recently when the BA codex came out. Space Wolves and their Thunderwolves and Long Fangs (and general Krak Missile Spam) are giving me a hard time. I've had a bit of a losing streak lately and it's crushing my enthusiasm for 40k, sadly. Not that I need to win to have fun but the last like 20 or so games I've gotten my ass handed to me. haha!

So I've got a big tournament coming up and honestly I don't have any delusions about getting best general or anything but I want to do well and take some names. I've come up with a Tau list that I think I can do well with, but I haven't had a chance to test it out because I need to model up 3 more broadsides first. Anyhow, I expect to see lots of Blood Angels, Space Wolves (all kinds of lists) and Guard at this tourney and the level of competition is high. Its the NOVA Open, maybe you heard about it. 



Missions are
1) 5 Objectives, Spearhead Deployment
2) VPs, Pitched Battle
3) Table Quarters, Dawn of War. 


My list right now: at 2000 points. 

Shas'El: Plasma Rifle, Missile pod, Targeting Array, Target Lock, 2 Shield Drones

Shas'El: Plasma Rifle, Missile pod, Targeting Array, Target Lock, 2 Shield Drones

Crisis Team: 3 XV8s
1: Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array, Leader, Lock
2: Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array
3: Fusion Blaster, Missile Pod, Targeting Array


Crisis Team: 3 XV8s
1: Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array, Leader, Lock
2: Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array
3: Fusion Blaster, Missile Pod, Targeting Array


Fire Warriors
6 Fire Warriors
1 Devilfish, Disruption Pod, Sensor Spines


Fire Warriors
6 Fire Warriors
1 Devilfish, Disruption Pod, Sensor Spines


Kroot Pack
10 Kroot
5 Hounds


Pathfinder Team
8 Pathfinders
1 Devilfish, Disruption Pod, Multitracker, SMS


Piranha Squadron
2 Piranhas: Fusion Blasters, Targeting Array, Disruption Pods


Broadside Team: 3 XV88s
1: Broadside: Targeting Array, Leader, Lock, 2 Shield Drones
2: Broadsides: Targeting Arrays


Broadside Team: 3 XV88s
1: Broadside: Targeting Array, Leader, Lock, 2 Shield Drones
2: Broadsides: Targeting Arrays


So I'm not looking for any list advice here. I've got the list where I want it (although I wish I had time to assemble and paint more kroot before this thing...). What I am looking for is, tactic advice. I've read about bubble-wraps, or layers of defense and I'm not sure I've got the force for that. Piranha blocks are in, too. My crisis teams are armed without 'trackers because of wound allocation tricks and the prevalence of FNP these days. I've honestly been playing without them on my suits and I love having more accurate fire. 

No hammerheads. Yep I've got three of them painted but I've found Broadsides are more effective and last longer due to shield drones and 2+ save. Plus the popularity of meltaguns made my hammerhead's armor paper thin. 

The 6 Broadsides and Crisis Suits are made to quickly de-mech an enemy army in a couple turns. Locks all around help a lot. My Crisis Teams are joined by the Shas'Els so I can protect them, and still target 1-3 different units

Any pointers?
How would you play this army?
What would you be concerned about?
How would you beat this army?


Great blog. Keep it up. 

Tim"

Hey Tim. Glad you are enjoying the blog and you can follow the thought processes! Ah my first Nova Open list :). Well you should be coming up against good and stiff competition there and would to get some pics and batreps (especially of people so we can put names to faces...). So onto your army, which I'm afraid to say isn't the best. Let's take a look why. You say your army is made to quickly de-mech your opponent and with 6 railguns over 4 targets & accurate missile pod shots backed up by Piranhas, this is pretty true but you have next to 0 torrent and ant-infantry. Your Crisis suits can only fire one weapon (wound allocation against most squads is going to cost you maybe 1 wound if you fire both PR & MP, especially with markerlight support), you have no large blasts from Railguns, the Devilfish don't have a torrent setup and Broadsides are obvioulsy much better at killing tanks. I know you said your list is set but if you could make some changes...well it might be a bit better in that regard.

So that's my primary worry. Worry number 2 would be lack of defense. You'll be de-meching opponents quickly but Tau do this generally anyway and you've only got two defensive units in the Piranhas & Kroot (I know you said you didn't have time to paint a 2nd Kroot squad) which relegates your DFish to a much more defensive role. If you had improved on the defensive front you'd find your Hammerheads surviving a lot a more as well as meltaguns would find it hard to get close enough for melta range. So what to do with this army list and how to play and beat it?

Firstly, how to beat it (so you need to be aware of this) which will leads onto how you should play with this list. Your anti-infantry guns will be easily over-loaded and your opponent can weight midfield and simply keep pushing until your defenses break. Since you have minimal redundency in your defenses you need to remain very mobile with your Devilfish and Crisis suits once your opponent reaches your Kroot lines and you need to be really good with your Piranha placement to slow your enemy's advance in midfield (are you able to split the squad up at least? 2x1 would give you more flexibility). Really what this type of army plays like is kinda like Eldar. Once your Kroot/Piranhas/Drones are compromised you're attempting to use your mobility of the Devilfish combined with JSJ Suits to keep up the pressure on your opponent so I'd practice moving Devilfish 12" so Crisis suits can still jump behind them to BLoS whilst still having good firing lanes.

It's a workable list but I really would suggest some changes but if you can't change (already submitted, models, painting, etc.) or don't want to change I'd be looking out for infantry based assault armies who will overwhelm your guns and really work on maximising the mileage you get out of your Kroot & Piranhas and your mobility after those defensive lines collapse. Let us know if you are up for any changes and how the tournament goes!

4 pinkments:

AbusePuppy said...

To be honest, if you don't want to change your list, I can't really say a whole lot good, tactics-wise. You're short on bubble wrap (only one squad Kroot), your Crisis setup is extremely sub-par (no Multitrackers?), you've got some really odd upgrade choices (Sensor Spines and Disruption Pods on the same vehicle?), and I don't see why you have the extra Devilfish.

I think you're suffering from what is often called "The Fear." You're so worried about something (in this case FNP) that you're crippling yourself to try and fight it.

You're also lacking in mobility, with the Broadsides effectively locking you in place. I would expect that you will consistently de-mech the enemy in the midfield (since you're not really lacking anything there) and then they will be able to simply run forward and wipe you out by force of numbers, since your defenses are severely lacking and you don't have the firepower to down significant numbers of infantry quickly.

Blood Angels are going to have an absolute field day with you, at least in the all-jumpers version. You pretty much only have one turn to shoot them as they arrive and then they are going to charge nearly everything you have, since you're grossly lacking in protective measures.

Missile-spam wolves are going to out-shoot you pretty badly, and that's not something that should happen to Tau. At 2K they're gonna have significantly more mobile S8 shots than you do and be downing suits and tanks left and right. TWC spam you may be able to handle, since you have the requisite S10 shots. Other lists may vary.

Well-built IG will demolish this list; you simply lack the shooting to really threaten them. Railguns and Missiles, sure, but no resilience and no anti-infantry threats. They'll be able to force some Chimeras in your face for Melta/Flamer spam and keep their long range guns well-protected from your immobile Broadsides.

It's harsh, but Tau really can only play one game if they want to win. You aren't following that game plan, and it's going to hurt you a lot.

Chumbalaya said...

What AP said. Broadsides need ASS and Crisis suits need multi-trackers. Otherwise you're too static and don't bring enough shots.

Chumbalaya said...

Also, I'll see you at Nova :D

Kirby said...

AP said everything that needed to be said a little less politely than I and much more focused on list 'fixing' but is pretty spot on.

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