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Xisor
25-06-2005, 01:14
Now, whilst I don't want this turning into a 'Just send Titans against the Tau' thread like on Old Portent, I did have a curious thought cross my mind.

What would the logistics be involved in sending a Rapid Force to try and drop Extreminatus on ~8 Major Tau Septs?

I know 'in recent times' the feeling is that the Imperium can't afford to do *anything* offensive or they'll loose whatever those ships/troops should have been defending(as the Imperium, since the 13th Black Crusade is running very short on reserves now) and those caveats. However....

What would be 'needed' to break the Tau Empire? Could a single battlefleet do it? A properly deployed chapter's battleforce?(bearing in mind the Damocles Crusade marines were of only 5 companies, primarily strike cruiser mounted IIRC)

We know the Damocles Crusade forces couldn't do it, and the Tau were *weak* then(No 'proper' warships....), they now have large-ish decently sized and fighting fleets, and have recently underwent their 3rd Phase Expansion. So, what would do it, in all of your humble opinions?

Xisor

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 01:17
I wondered this back on portent. The Tau have no way of keeping an eye on warp space, what would stop a massed Imperial fleet dropping out of warp realtively near the Tau homeworld and wiping the litte skanks from existence?

I know they couldn't drop out of warp directly into orbit, as ships have to drop out at a set distance but still, they should be able to bypass most of the outleying defence stations and blockade ships, if there are any...

Goblinardo
25-06-2005, 01:32
For some reason, I think any Imperial attack deep in Tau territory would involve badgers. Ninja badgers. :p

BTW, the Tau can't watch warpspace, but their alien allies (esp. Nicassar) can. And considering that the whole Tau Empire is quite compact, help wouldn't take too long to arrive. A determined attack would still leave quite a mess, though, but I don't see it being completely successful.

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 01:41
If I were the Emperor (and how do you know i'm not?) I'd sent one of my more insane captains to activate his warp drive whilst pointing directly at the Tau homeworld, ina similar way to the ship in the Battle of Macragge which destroyed the second Tyranid hive fleet.

Bye Tau. (waves)

Xisor
25-06-2005, 01:51
That's one thing I'd considered too. Reputedly it takes ~weeks to move from 'deep space' Warp points into the 'Biospheres'(ie Earth Orbit) where inhabitted systems are likely to be. I don't know how Tau Warp Dives are constrained by this though, perhaps they are capable of jumping inside Star Systems? If this were the case then the Tau *could* mount better 'running battle' defenses unlike what happened defending against the Orks during Armageddon.

My worry about the whole thing is that, if, to generalise: The Tau Empire is roughly 400 Light Years in diameter(says 300 in the codex with an expansion of 32.6% during the Eye of Terror), that means, to me, a 'rough' guess of a 200 light year warp jump to make it from 'outside' to the 'heart' undetected. How 'bad' are Jumps of that length for inaccuracy?

I never thought I'd hear myself suggest it, but a strike team of 4-5 Battlebarger?

Xisor

EDIT: It wasn't a warp jump he started(was it?) it was a warp drive overload...or am I wrong? :rolleyes:

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 01:55
Tau don't have warp technology of any kind as far as i'm aware - without Navigators they can't navigate warp space.

A 200LY warp jump is nothing - a long jump is considered to be 5000LY for Imperial vessels.

edit: yeah a warp overload, but doing that whilst colliding with a planet would mess it up pretty badly right?

Xisor
25-06-2005, 02:06
Yes. Yes it would mess it up. Badly.

Tau make 'Warp Dives'. They propel themselves using Gravititational Drives 'into the warp', but never make it. They can't. Without navigators(and the Nicassar are not Navigators, but telepaths it'd seem) or some sort of Navigator-styled psyker(presumably the Kroot have the odd 'navigator-esque' thing, as do orks most likely) no-one is capable of making the transit from realspace to warpspace or back. Instead the Tau bounce off. Much like what happens when you hold an inflated ball underwater, it is 'bounced out'. By angling the 'dive' correctly the Tau can achieve effective interstellar speeds at a constant 'roughly' 1/3 of Imperial Average Warpspeeds.

So whilst the Tau are slower, they are more reliable. And don't suffer from Geller Field Failure.

Xisor

Khaine's Messenger
25-06-2005, 03:31
What would the logistics be involved in sending a Rapid Force to try and drop Extreminatus on ~8 Major Tau Septs?

This depends on a fair number of factors. For example, the Imperial Crusade fleet in the Damocles Gulf Crusade was able to assume space superiority for a short while over a fairly fringe "sept" world...they could easily have enacted exterminatus had they wished....assuming the fleet included ships capable of exterminatus-level events (or the rapidly ship-deployable type--cyclonic barrages, viral bombs, etc. Not including the Slow methods, like redirected space debris, orbital bombardment of every square kilometer until the surface is slag, etc.). However, as stated, that was a fringe world...and it was during the Damocles Gulf Crusade.

Keeping in mind that rapidly deployable exterminatus measures are relatively "rare" and require special dispensation...although these are standard kit on a Space Marine battle barge, iirc.


We know the Damocles Crusade forces couldn't do it

Eh?

~~~
A sector battlefleet could probably do one sept world, but given that the Tau Empire's built up some, the fleet would be so slagged by the effort that it would essentially have to be a kamikaze run (and even then, a sector fleet might not be able to do it). This also depends on how duplicitous you want to be (and how close the Tau would allow armed Imperial vessels no matter the ruse), or how messy you care to be...a warp core breach over a major sept world might be...interesting, to say the least (as several of you have already surmised).

The logistical investment required to take out 8 sept worlds in a series of purely military campaigns, however, would probably be enormous. Beyond the obvious ("all logistical investments are enormous"), you've got the problem of how simultaneously you want to take them out...taking them out one by one would probably be a pain in the ****, and the Tau and their allies would probably make the Imperium pay in blood for every planet they try to nab as a forward base (as the Imperium needs such things that far out from the Astronomican). A small Imperial force would have to act like pirates ("privateers"?)...a larger force would have to chew up the Empire and spit it out or throw up its hands and go home. Doing quickie-exterminatus' out of spite would be fruitless, as the septworlds are merely administrative hubs and population centers, and the former can be rapidly relocated thanks to redundancy, especially because the Tau Empire has long lived with its constituents at arms' length. The latter is more of a problem, but given the prediliction for the Tau to view the possession of territory as secondary to their other goals, it is likely that, if sept-worlds started to be demolished, major population centers could be relocated (and it wouldn't be as hard as relocating the populations of hive worlds).

In essense, the Imperium couldn't really take out ~8 sept worlds without dominating the intervening space....unless they're in a desperate mood and a more intelligent than normal state of mind (that is, they make well-reasoned desperate decisions).[/ramble]

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 03:35
You use big words.

Which I understand, thankfully. But you seem to have put it all rather well. I wouldn't put it past the Imperium obliterating Tau worlds out of sheer spite. I'd do it. :D

Jal'knock
25-06-2005, 03:37
If I were the Emperor (and how do you know i'm not?)

Because I am :D :p :wtf: :D


I'd sent one of my more insane captains to activate his warp drive whilst pointing directly at the Tau homeworld

A la Halo 2 eh? The Imperium dominate the Tau completely in space unless they stupidy underestimate a certain battlestation and go in with minimal force at first (I hope that fleet commander was summarily executed). I see nothing really standing in the way of them dropping out of warp and annhilating each and every world one by one. Except for the fact that they are another bulwark against the Tyranids for the Imperium.

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 03:43
Because I am :D :p :wtf: :D

Well in that case you can sort out these jokers who're selling models of your future warriors at extortionate prices.




A la Halo 2 eh? The Imperium dominate the Tau completely in space unless they stupidy underestimate a certain battlestation and go in with minimal force at first (I hope that fleet commander was summarily executed). I see nothing really standing in the way of them dropping out of warp and annhilating each and every world one by one. Except for the fact that they are another bulwark against the Tyranids for the Imperium.


I think once the Tau get killed via the methods you describe it would be relatively easy to take out all of the Tyranid hive fleets by manufacturing masses and masses of small probes, consisting of little more than a warp drive with excellent shielding - make it remote controlled, shoot it at a Hive fleet and activate it. Bye-bye Tyranids.

In fact, this would probably work on any enemy fleet. Why the hell haven't the Admech done this!? Idiots...

Xisor
25-06-2005, 03:48
Didn't they have an 'incident' on Triton or Ganymede that went disastrously wrong and the Ad Mech as a result banned further Warp Tech Experimentation?

t's a good idea though, I'm just not sure I'd want the Ad Mech to be the ones researching it....

Xisor

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 03:50
Lol perhaps not.. maybe the TechMarines, they seem a bit more sensible...

I don't know about any disastrous experiments but I haven't read much about the Admech anyway...

Xisor
25-06-2005, 03:53
From a bit of old Squat Fluff:


The Guild has already developed the most advanced form of propulsion for spacecraft: a neoplasma reactor powered-by a warp-core held in thrall by a containment field of zero-energy. No other race has ever replicated this drive mechanism, the Adeptus Mechanicus having given up their experiments with warp-core technology ever since the infamous Contagion of Ganymede.


Presumably, whilst Squats are out the airlock, the Ad Mech side of things should be kept.

Xisor

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 03:55
Stupid AdMech, can't trust them with anything...

I dread to think what the divine technologies of hair straighteners would do to them...

Khaine's Messenger
25-06-2005, 04:12
Before this becomes another "lol teh stoopid AdMech!!!!111!" thread.... :rolleyes:

You didn't exactly see the Squats weaponizing this technology, either...much less any race developing weapons that can lay barren entire star systems (except for maybe War in Heaven-era superpowers or any other "ubertech" civilizations that have unquantified abilities). 40k itself is rather silly, and the AdMech is hardly alone in this....

Slightly back on topic, I was under the impression that some of the more extreme forms of exterminatus used void/vortex missiles?

TenTailedCat
25-06-2005, 04:16
I thought standard procedeur for Exterminatus was Cyclonic torpedoes?

Any reliable records as to what Horus used on Istvaan?

Cyclonics are certainly mentioned in Nightbringer, one of the uriel Ventris novels. Apart from the Planet Killer and Konrad Curzes' attack on Nostamo I've yet to hear of any other methods regarding Exterminatus.

Khaine's Messenger
25-06-2005, 04:25
Exterminatus is just a catchall for destroying a planet (or rendering it utterly uninhbitable), I'm pretty sure...whether it be cooking off the atmosphere (eg, viral bombing or cyclonic warheads, although those could be one and the same, although I'm not sure) or causing such geological turmoil that the planet pulls itself apart (eg, geo-thermal warheads). And according to the HH art books as well as the Black Legion IA, Istvaan III was viral-bombed, iirc....the new Codex: Tyranids hints at varying "levels" and "types" of Exterminatus (there is a subheading entitled "on the phenomenon of immunity to certain methods of exterminatus"; "Damnatus-pattern" is described as "mass-yield cyclonic saturation").

x-esiv-4c
25-06-2005, 05:42
Either way it seems to be a combination of various virus weapons, nuclear weapons etc. etc. Rendering the planet totally dead. In some of the Gaunt's books it mentions a self-eating virus that would kill all organic life then devour itself so as not to kill new colonists.

Falkus
25-06-2005, 06:01
Slightly back on topic, I was under the impression that some of the more extreme forms of exterminatus used void/vortex missiles?

Wouldn't anti-missile defenses take care of these unless said defenses had been neutralized first?

Adept
25-06-2005, 06:58
It's impossible to really theorise how much it would take for the Imperium to destroy the Tau without some ballpark figures, like:

How many ships, and of what type, are available to the Tau?

Same question for the Imperium?

How do the ships match up? Does it take one, two, or three Imperial Cruisers to take out a single Tau cruiser? Or is it the other way around?

Refitting and refuelling? How long can a strike force of each side remain in action before having to return to base?

Docks and shipyards? How well do the Tau defend these?

Diplomacy? The Tau are very humanistic, valuing the lives of their citizens. Surely this weakness can be taken advantage of in some way? Like offering them time to evacuate their cities then hitting them while their transports are docked, or something like that. Or offering medical assistance for their wounded and sending virus bombs instead.

Sojourner
25-06-2005, 07:16
If the Tau never figured out what was going on, it's a viable tactic.

However, they would. It's practically impossible that eight seperate battlegroups could make such deep jumps right into Tau space, and arrive at the same time, without being noticed. Once they're noticed, I have no doubt that the Empire would mobilise everything they had to stop them.

Then the Imperium loses eight good exterminator ships at a minimum.

Shinzui
25-06-2005, 08:31
You can't just jump inside the system and bomb the planet. In order to exterminate a planet you'd have to enter at the jump point at the edge of the system then make their way to the planet get within relitively short distance and then depending on what weapon you use it could take mins to days to complete. This also depends if there isn't a fleet defending.

I point to both Eye of Terror and the Gothic war, Chaos could've easily won if they did the same thing but as shown in there it isn't as easy as it sounds.

This also isn't star trek, it takes hours to pass into a system leaving time for the Tau to evactuate or call for help (look at daemocles crusade the Imperium had total surprise and the Tau managed to evacuate all personal, disassemble any advance technology and get away before the fleet even had time to land).

Even once the fleet gets there the Tau posses powerful Orbital stations like the ones told in 'Vor'la a world of warriors' article. One orbital station managed to take on an Ork Fleet and only when they started ramming it and forced it into the atmosphere was it actually destroyed.

Before you take all this into account you also have to add the fact that most Septs are not on the boarders of Tau Space like Vior'la but are surrounded by a hundred worlds. some just are populated as sept worlds. A fleet getting though there with Tau fleets roaming would be practically impossible.

Would taking out these ultimately stop the Tau? I doubt it. Considering the facts that Imperial forces a stretch pass breaking point (especially after losing Gryphonne IV which basically cripples Imperial forces in Segmentum Tempestus). I don't see where the Imperium is going to get the many ships and WMDs to take out the Tau Sept worlds.

Sojourner
25-06-2005, 08:52
Arriving at an outsystem jump point is sudden enough, but it'd be a very difficult journey as to remain undetected the vessels would have to jump from imperial space all the way into the heart of the Empire, which I think we can agree is a long way. Arriving near the planet or at the system's outer reaches still doesn't give the Tau fleet assets elsewhere the time to respond - they have to make the same sublight journey you did.

Shinzui
25-06-2005, 09:57
Tau engines don't need a jump point as they don't enter the warp do don't need to worry about planets gravity affecting their warp jump. Also depending on the position of the planets orbit etc a Tau fleet could choose to enter at the nearest edge of the system to the planet and get there sooner than the Imperial fleet which would be restricted by the Jump point.

Also the Imperial fleet have the danger of Tau fleets waiting in ambush by jump points (Something pointed out in the BFG rulebook).

Adept
25-06-2005, 12:25
Yeah, but what if the Imperium sent an envoy to negotiate a non-agression treaty between the two galactic empires?

And when the shuttle lands, it triggers the virus bombs that are integrated into it's hull, contaminating the planet.

Of course, I don't know how long it would take for a virus bomb to contaminate the whole planet.

Inquisitor Maul
25-06-2005, 14:18
I bet the Adeptus mechanicus can come up (if they havn't allready) some realy deadly viral agents. IIRC, Virus bombs can vary from stuff that simply kill all creatures on the world or viruses that attacks organic mather at molecular level and reduce it to goo. That goo can then be fired upon from orbit wich will create a firestorm that would do a better job at cleaning the planet then the Tyranids.

Or there are allways the good old Cyklonic Torpeoes ;)

alterion
25-06-2005, 14:28
um i think the tau can monitor the position of imperial fleets.. if you read the tau dipolmacy story the aun says that his contacts or summthin report that the imperial fleet is still many months away.. i am unsure wether this is basing thier current location and tau travel sbut i would imagine that it was absed upon rough imperial waro estimates. I think Viral bombing is the most common method and rapid .. but again it could be different for the tau as there is no garuentee a human viri could kill the tau.. therfore i would imagine a much longer and drawn out method would have to be used.. and of couse i would imagine many tau cities have groovy force fields and stuff.. imperial cities often have void sheild i do not ithink it is improbbalbe that the tau have similar mechanisms

x-esiv-4c
25-06-2005, 14:47
This might sound like a stupid question but: What do Cyclonic torpedoes do? Do they yield a Nuclear payload or is it something else?

Inquisitor Maul
25-06-2005, 14:52
From what I know about Cyklonic Torpedoes they start a huge Firestorm (maybe they ignite the atmosphere or something) that sweeps the planet into a big ball of rock.

Though, there are many versions how they work.

TheSonOfAbbadon
25-06-2005, 14:57
Yes. Yes it would mess it up. Badly.

Agreed.


Tau make 'Warp Dives'. They propel themselves using Gravititational Drives 'into the warp', but never make it. They can't. Without navigators(and the Nicassar are not Navigators, but telepaths it'd seem) or some sort of Navigator-styled psyker(presumably the Kroot have the odd 'navigator-esque' thing, as do orks most likely) no-one is capable of making the transit from realspace to warpspace or back. Instead the Tau bounce off. Much like what happens when you hold an inflated ball underwater, it is 'bounced out'. By angling the 'dive' correctly the Tau can achieve effective interstellar speeds at a constant 'roughly' 1/3 of Imperial Average Warpspeeds.

Orks have no Navigators, they just leap into the warp and hope they come out somewhere where they can have a decent fight. And I've never heard of Kroot using navigators.


So whilst the Tau are slower, they are more reliable. And don't suffer from Geller Field Failure.

Xisor

I think they also have better realspace engines, w00ts to them.

devolutionary
25-06-2005, 15:03
OK, here's what my slightly insane tactical mind is telling me - the best thing the Imperium could do here is somehow "guide" an Ork Fleet into the system at full steam with some "captured" imperial ships and then move in on other worlds while the Tau try to repel the Greenskin horde.

Ain't nobody going to ignore a full on Ork Waaagh! crashing in to their defences :evilgrin:

TheSonOfAbbadon
25-06-2005, 15:08
Dude, Ork WAAAGH!s are already pouring into the Tau!

devolutionary
25-06-2005, 15:25
Dude, Ork WAAAGH!s are already pouring into the Tau!

Yes, but randomly, and without decent concentration... OK fine! There were a few that did some damage. It's still a good crazy plan, emphasis on the crazy :p Besides, with some Imperial Ships in full running order, I imagine they could do more damage, since God knows those AdMech boys are the best there is at creating volatile super-weapons. Gargants may have their quirks, but there aint nothing like an imploding (it's a cool word, so sue me) warp-core incident to leave a lasting impression on the galactic consciousness! We're also talking about the people who helped designed the Eversor assassin, who may as well be a Swamp Dragon from Discworld.

A purely concentrated force designed as a distraction would be perfect for the Imperium. The trick is to know it's going to happen and be prepared. To date, this has not occured and has not been utilised. It may not even be possible, who knows? Orks are probably the most enigmatic of all the races there are, at least in terms of how they actually do it (Tyranids consume, Necrons repair, Eldar whimper :skull:, but Orks just make it happen), so that could probably kill the idea right there. Still, it's something for those mad boys in the High Lords council room to contemplate.

Failing that, hold a barbeque and invite the Hive Gangs :)

Shinzui
25-06-2005, 15:30
Yeah, but what if the Imperium sent an envoy to negotiate a non-agression treaty between the two galactic empires?

And when the shuttle lands, it triggers the virus bombs that are integrated into it's hull, contaminating the planet.

Of course, I don't know how long it would take for a virus bomb to contaminate the whole planet.

They'd know by a thing called sensors ;)

And even then the discussion is about destroy the eight major sept worlds and that tactic would work only once (That would factor that an Imperial ship would be allowed to land on a Sept world, most likely it would be similar to kill team novel where they stay on board a Tau vessel as guests).

Lostanddamned
25-06-2005, 15:38
How about aproaching the systems in "damaged" imperial navy crafts claiming surrender, then when they are near the systems.

This could work because of the way that the tau are always ready to accept new members into their empire and can be 100% trusting.

Xisor
25-06-2005, 15:54
Why the hell would the Tau be 100% Trusting? Don't talk nonsense. Uzbekistani customs and borders are likely not even '100%' trusting. Oh the Tau are *Utopian*, well look at 1st World countries(our close attempt at Utopia :eyebrows: ), we have ridiculous measures in place. I don't see why this wouldn't be the same for the Tau.

Orks: Don't know if there are any major Ork 'establishments' nearby, but if there were it'd take some effort, and the Eldar wouldn't stand for it :evilgrin: . As for Ork Navigators, I don't mean Navigators in the Imperial sense, but some sort of Ork Mutant Weirdboy that makes up for the thing the Tau lack. Otherwise transition is not possible. So the Orks must have *something*...

As for Tau 'jumping insystem', I'm not sure. Tau realspace drives are pretty much on par with Imperial ones, though the Imperium does have alot of faster things in the form of Light Cruisers and Escorts(the Tau's are still the same speed as normal cruisers). I think Gravity would affect the Tau just as much as the Imperium *but* this is due to the realspace part of warp jumps, not the Warp itself. I don't think gravity actually affects the warp, but more the transition stage. If the ships exit warpspace ina gravity well, it's Geller field could be 'stripped' due to the gravity, 'across the breach', whilst it is still exposed to the warp. Also, the ships could be exiting at extremely high velocities, so a small change due to a gravity well could lead to a change that could tear a ship apart, or have it crash into a planet, or both. This last bit is the one that'd affect the Tau. Could they calculate a jump precisely enough for that *not* to happen?

Xisor

Shinzui
25-06-2005, 17:09
Orks: Don't know if there are any major Ork 'establishments' nearby, but if there were it'd take some effort, and the Eldar wouldn't stand for it . As for Ork Navigators, I don't mean Navigators in the Imperial sense, but some sort of Ork Mutant Weirdboy that makes up for the thing the Tau lack. Otherwise transition is not possible. So the Orks must have *something*...

If ya take a look in the Ork codex the map which shows areas of the galaxy and population numbers, well the Tau are in the middle 20+ ork worlds per 100 light years (and fairly nearly a few 50+). Also in the Farsight fluff after he left the Tau Empire he smashed into several ork empires before making his colonies.

I'd say planets do effect the warp by the fact that they are strategic points, If Chaos could just fly past cadia in the warp planet would ultimate be unimportant. It'd also make any kind of defensive perimeter impossible.

Brings up an intresting point that jump points must be the only safe way to exit the warp (or what is aimed for by every navigator). It would explain why you can't just bypass systems (if he could Abaddon could just bypass every planet head for Terra and blow it up with the planet killer). It would also explain why the BFG rulebook refers that even uninhabitable systems are important just for their jump points (Warp channel is probably the more important part rather than the jump point itself).

pnweerar
25-06-2005, 19:59
Exterminatus is easy. As per the Inquistion War Trilogy, you just send out the word and the local SM chapter will load up the viral bombs and go.

The Imperium may not care for the Tau, but it won't burn worlds unless it really has to. Has anyone noticed that they'll throw uncounted Guardsman against a planet rather than just scouring clean from space? Ben Counter addresses this in the third "Soul Drinkers" book.

In it, he points out that the Imperium doesn't care about lives, people are a cheap and utterly renewable resource. It does however care about worlds -- it's real assets.

Bmaxwell
25-06-2005, 23:55
Isn't a warp drive test what killed off the squats?

Adept
26-06-2005, 00:18
Isn't a warp drive test what killed off the squats?

No, I think it was a downward trend in their sales...

Oh wait, I mean the Tyranids. Yeah, the nids ate them all...

Ubik_Lives
27-06-2005, 00:56
Exterminatus is easy. As per the Inquistion War Trilogy, you just send out the word and the local SM chapter will load up the viral bombs and go.


Of cource that's a little easier to enact on your own planets, as they probably won't think that the space marine fleet is actually going to pummel them to oblivion. Alien races won't have this same problem and will defend against any incursions into their territories.

x-esiv-4c
27-06-2005, 02:59
Question about Inquisitorial authority:
Is there any questioning of the =][='s decision to exterminate a planet? I mean, what stops radical inquisitors from destroying a planet in a Machavellian (sp) Fervor that would impede Imperial logistics and infrastructure.

zealousheretic
27-06-2005, 03:28
Nothing, actually.

Inquisitorial power is, and should be, a very scary thing if you actually think about it.