Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Army List Critique: 2k Beginning Tau


Hey everyone,

So its been a little bit since I’ve posted anything; don’t worry, I’m building to some cool pieces, which, of course, I don’t have all the stuff to finish yet….

Anyways, I’ve been playing with the Tau Codex lately, and have a potential starting list to begin building. Everything is based around box kits, etc., so I don’t have things like 15 Kroot or 6 Fire Warriors.


  • Commander Shas’el with Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, Targeting Array, as well as HWDC, HWMT, HWTL, Stimulant Injector, Shield Generator, and Iridium Armour.
  • Drones: 2 Shield
  • Bodyguard #1 with Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, and Targeting Array, as well as HWDC, HWMT, and MWTL.
  • Drones: 2 Guns
  • Bodyguard #2 with Plasma Rifle, Missile Pod, and Targeting Array, as well as HWDC, HWMT, and MWTL.
  • Drones: 1 Gun (10) 1 Shield (15)

  • Crisis Suit Team
  • Suit #1 with Cyclic Ion Blaster, Missile Pod, and Targeting Array, as well as HWDC, HWMT, and Bonding Knife.
  • Drones: 2 Guns
  • · Suit #2 with TL Burst Cannon and Missile Pod.
  • · Suit #3 with Burst Cannon, Missile Pod, and Multi-Tracker.


  • 12 man Fire Warrior Team with a Shas’ui, in a Devilfish with a Seeker Missile.
  • 12 man Fire Warrior Team with a Shas’ui, in a Devilfish with a Seeker Missile.
  • 12 man Kroot Carnivore Squad with Shaper and a Pulse Carbine.


  • Gun Drone Squadron X6
  • Gun Drone Squadron X6
  • Pathfinder Team X6 with a Team Leader, Rail Rifle, and HWDC, in a Devilfish with a Seeker Missile.
  • Drones: 2 Shield


  • Broadside Team
  • Suit #1: Shas’vre with TL Plasma Rifle and a Bonding Knife, as well as a HWDC, HWMT, and HWTL.
  • Drones: 2 Shield
  • Suit #2: Shas’ui with TL Plasma Rifle and a DC.
  • Drones: 2 Shield
  • Suit #3: Shas’ui with a DC.
  • Drones: 2 Shield (30) 100
  • Sky Ray Missile Defence Gunship with Smart Missiles, a Targeting Array, and a Multi Tracker.

TOTAL: 1997

I think the list fits the entire All-Round Balanced Army I’m going for to start. The Commander and his Bodyguard is there to drop in and mess up Terminators and Medium Armour with ease.

The Crisis Suit team is there to deal with hordes with Quantity of fire over Quality of fire (Not that Burst Cannons aren’t awesome, though).

Mech troops ensure my Fire Warriors can get around at a decent speed and get to Objectives. The Kroot fill the necessary Melee combat needed for the Tau. Also, I just want to model a Shaper, so that’s why he’s there.

The 2 Gun Drone Squadrons, although weird, are designed to Deep Strike and Objective Clean. The Pathfinders provide Markerlights, and their Shield Drones ensure they stay alive.

For Heavy Support, the Broadsides provide my major anti-armour defence. I upgraded two to the Plasma Rifle to ensure their safety if something gets too close, though I have a feeling that will change unless I drop the DC and give them a Multi-Tracker. Finally, the Sky Ray is there to sit in cover and shoot off Seeker Missiles backed up by the numerous Markerlights in the army.

I think it’ll do pretty well. I can already tell that I’m going to need some more Fusion Blaster for anti-Mech, but other than that, I feel comfortable about the list in its entirety.

As for the army itself, I have a Crisis Suit and two Gun Drones nearly finished, just waiting on the Snow Flock, which should hopefully be here tomorrow. I’ll also have pictures up of them as well tomorrow! Speaking of snow, this is the sight of the mountains around Durango…

Durango Snow

Perhaps a Snow-based army was the wrong scheme to do now….



  1. Your commander's loadout is illegal; you have two weapons, a Targeting Array, and a Shield Generator on him, which is four out of three available hardpoints. My suggestion would be to drop the Stim Injectors and Shield Generator; you guy is fragile, that's something you have to accept as Tau.

    I would strip the Seeker Missiles from your Devilfish and the Shas'uis from your FW squads. Neither are really very useful, in the end. If possible I would try and add 5-6 Kroot Hounds to your Kroot squad and dump the Shaper. (Shapers are super, super bad, I'm sorry.)

    Your Broadsides are a very risky build- remember, you'll need to take Morale tests when drones start dying, and with Ld8 you're not going to stick around very long. Try running them with Advanced Stabilization or Targeting Array instead, and give the Team Leader a Hardwired Drone Controller. (1 Shield + 1 Gun or 2 Gun are my preferred drone loadouts, but you can argue lots of ways.)

    Pathfinders are good, but Rail Rifles and Shield Drones are a waste. Keep them nice and simple, because EVERYONE is going to be trying to kill them. Also you can save some points by letting the Fire Warriors use their transport, since they don't need one. (The FWs can't start the game in it, but they can hop in first turn.)

    Your Bodyguard Crisis are largely fine- although a bit over-upgraded, you don't need Drones and Target Locks for everyone in the team, usually just one guy- but the Elite ones are a bit of a mess. Making them all unique isn't worth losing all your firepower, so just run them all with Missile Pod, Multitracker, and another gun. I would strongly recommend Plasma Rifles for all of them- gotta have some way to kill Marines, after all- but you can get away with other guns if you absolutely refuse to use PRs.

    Gun Drone Squadrons are also kinda bad. Not horrific, but just not that good, either. More Crisis and Broadsides will do a fine job of cleaning things off of objectives.

    The only unit I would mount a Fusion Blaster on is a Piranha. Railguns are plenty good for 99% of targets, and even against Land Raiders they do pretty okay. Piranhas are nice for blocking off the enemy's movement, though.

  2. Ah AbusePuppy, I was hoping you'd critique the list!
    First off: Ooops on the Commander, I must have gotten carried away with him. I want the Command Squad to be a fairly elite "drop in and kill something" unit, hence the large amount of upgrades. I did drop the Shield Generator and the Stim.

    The Seeker Missiles seemed like a good idea to go along with the Markerlights, though I don't have many in the army...I had also thought about Kroot Hounds, but wasn't sure how they did...consider them added. I also dropped the Shaper, he seemed cool to add from a Modeling perspective; I'll probably make a model for him in the end though.

    The Broadsides were an interesting choice. I was sitting with a friend writing up this list, and with a 2+ and a bunch of 4++ dudes flying around, they sounded good. My initial list stuck with a Hammerhead, which I just changed the list back to.

    I know Pathfinders are good, but I wasn't quite sure how people ran them. I thought the Rail Rifles were good, and the Drones would help keep the squad protected, but I guess not. That's not a bad idea on the Pathfinder Devilfish. I was under the impression that the FW couldn't use the Pathfinder's Devilfish, kinda like the old IG codex and Armoured Fist Squads giving up their rides.

    The Elites Crisis Suits squad was kinda a test. I wanted to draw up an anti-infantry squad with plenty of firepower. My good friend back home probably would have caught the problem with the squad before I would, so they'll probably become PR-ML-TL ones soon.

    The Gun Drones were recommended by my friend back home. We like to play around with underrated units, and figured that that was probably it. They'll probably join the Kroot Shaper in that they look good, but don't hit the table often.

    Thanks, as usual, for all the advice AbusePuppy, I'm thinking a constant endorsement for you and 3++ is the New Black may be in order! I have a new list drawn up, which I'll put up tomorrow along with the pictures of the NEARLY finished Crisis Suit!