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"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Tau Codex Review: Tetra & Piranha Skimmer Teams

Back to the IA Tau. The Tetra is another version of the Piranha like the TX-42 but with a very different role and different model. It’s also cheaper but has far less offensive and blocking potential due to the lack of significant guns and smaller profile. Well that was a review in a nutshell…let’s go a bit more into the details.
The Tetra has an added mobility advantage over the other Piranha variants (we’re going to just call the Tetra a piranha variant for ease of use) with the Scout rule. Unfortunately this doesn’t really help the Tetra at all because it lacks any sort of significant gun (twin-linked pulse rifle) or any means to upgrade it. This means getting into side arcs of tanks is rather useless so all the Scout move enables is a repositioning to avoid in-coming firepower or be in a better position to block. The problem with this is the smaller profile of Tetras and although they are happy to turn sideways with no front AV11, their overall blocking capacity is somewhat reduced compared to Piranhas and they have no 2nd turn meltagun to scare people with. They do come with disruption pods for free though! The marker light is cute and that’s about it. It’s mobile which is great but expensive for a single ML shot @ BS3. Overall the Tetra loses out to it’s Piranha cousins which block nearly as well, if not better but have much more offensively utility and defensive capabilities.

All in all, the TX-42 or normal Piranha are better choices for any combination of blocking or offence but the Tetra does have some distinct advantages which should perhaps be drawn into Piranha teams in the future. Akin to Space Marine Land Speeder squadrons I believe combining the elements of the TX-42 and normal Piranha into one squad choice and adding Tetra elements (I.e. Scout) to the squad as a whole streamlines the different variants and the very crowded Tau Fast Attack slot. By providing scout to the squadron they become more effective blockers and more able to get into side-arcs if you are using them offensively early on. By making the whole group of them into a squadron it’s also very easy to have the TX-42 as an ‘upgrade’ over the normal Piranha much like the Typhoon is for the normal speeder.

As covered in the TX-42 review, these Piranhas are much more offensively oriented with heavier weapons such as the Missile Pod and being able to scout and bring these to bear into the side arc quickly makes them much more potent offensively. The Piranha then would take on the more ‘utility’ and scouting role which the Tetra is currently employed in and could perhaps be given marker light drones, etc. to be considered the forward scout of the Tau arsenal.

So, thoughts on the Piranha team/squadron? Or should the Tetra just be scrapped in favour of giving the normal Piranha scout and still having Piranhas and TX-42’s as separate squadrons?

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