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RED9335
06-01-2010, 04:32
Hey everyone I haven't played the Tau since they first came out and am gonna finish my old army up so I can deal with IG tank spam. Are the tau still pretty good? I'm gonna run a heavy mech list I think.

Arvendragon
06-01-2010, 05:17
Rated one of the worst lists in 5th edition. New rules to cover completely ruined Tau's infamous high-AP shooting.

They're playable at least

Remoah
06-01-2010, 05:31
Agreed, probably not the best list, but they're playable still...

Once they get an update though they'll probably be one of the best armies, especially if they keep JSJ tactics...

Murphey
06-01-2010, 05:50
Tau run into several huge problems in 5th.

One of which is their much vaunted anti-tank power got severely toned down in 5th. Railguns take a huge backseat to meltas in the anti-tank race.

Also, Tau do not have access to heavy/melta weapons on troops, which is a huge downside.

Tau vehicles have to 'extra armor' analog, so they can't play musical chairs like all the other vehicle races.

Meltas on battlesuits are only 12" range. Which means your extremely fragile/expensive suits are easily in charge range of any transport they are trying to kill.

Transports exploding are apparently at most a minor nuisance in the new rules. Popping a waveserpent that just hauled 36" the previous turn doesn't hinder the passengers in the least. After said vehicle is popped by a crisis suit within 6", the passengers can just charge said crisis suit next turn virtually guaranteed.

Tau troops are best deployed as a gunline. 5th ed is all about hiding in a vehicle for 5 turns and then playing musical chairs.

Massive proliferation of ignores cover weapons makes kroot fairly non-viable.

New combat resolution makes kroot entirely non-viable.

There's more, but those tend to be the salient points. I wouldn't say the Tau are the absolute worst codex currently out there, but I'd put it in the running for it.

~Murphey

WinglessVT2
06-01-2010, 06:51
They're very good, assuming you don't field a silly gunline.

AFnord
06-01-2010, 07:33
Massive proliferation of ignores cover weapons makes kroot fairly non-viable.

New combat resolution makes kroot entirely non-viable.
Kroots can on the other hand outflank, which makes them very useful against gunlines and relatively static armies, and ork hordes.


Tau troops are best deployed as a gunline. 5th ed is all about hiding in a vehicle for 5 turns and then playing musical chairs.
I have never seen a tau gunline army do well, not in 3rd edition, not in 4th edition and not in 5th edition. Tau troops have always been at their best when deployed in transports. Their long range seem to be more of a beginners trap than an actual asset it most cases.

Tau suffer in killpoint missions, thanks to all their gun drones on vehicles (a very simple fix would simply be to say that they don't count as killpoints), but apart from that, tau can still put up a fight. It's a tricky army, and as always you should rely on mobility and not long range when playing tau. Gunlines simply don't work for tau, and that has been true for as long as tau has been around.

owen matthew
06-01-2010, 08:14
Absolutely one of the worst armys in 5th. Not very good in 4th, either. Not good for guys starting out. shelve them, and hope that when they get a new book its more than just the simple tweak it was the last time around.

RED9335
06-01-2010, 08:18
I didn't know any of that stuff! It just all looked allot more playable and competitive on paper I guess. I impulse bought space wolves and have been having it rather hard using them against the IG and honestly wish I hadn't just bought them on a whim and a glance. I liked using the tau allot and I'm still thinking that I can pop some of his tanks with broadsides and Hammerheads maybe. The chimera melta vet issue i'm still thinking over, have they really suffered that bad? I can move and hide as good as he can would that work a little better?

CommDante
06-01-2010, 09:14
Although markerlights are very expensive, I think with all the coversaves most things get these days they're even more viable in 5th.
Tank with 4+ coversave? A squad of pathfinders should be able to remove that coversave and maybe even add an extra +1 to BS. Same with people screening their better or weaker units with another unit.
This will make your pathfinders #1 target, which can help when playing (partly) static.

Buildings etc (cover that removes LoS) works wonders with JSJ, but few people field the scenery to allow to properly use it.

Though I think you should just take some more anti-tank stuff, like Landspeeders/Attackbikes with Meltas or Piranhas (swoosh behind his/her tanks and pop the rear-armor). Maybe drop a dreadnought with a multimelta behind his tanks?

dtjunkie19
06-01-2010, 09:25
IMO, most of what hass been said in the thread is quite overblown or just plain wrong.

Yes, tau are not one of the top tier armies in 5th at the moment.
Yes, tau have a high learning curve and are by no means forgiving.
Yes, only certain tau builds can really be considered even competitive. (and its most certainly not gunline tau...)

New rules to cover have not ruined tau shooting...as tau usually don't have an over-abundance of ap 3, 2, 1 weaponry. In general I would say most tau weapons are ap 4 or 5. not horribly affected by new cover rules.

No more consolidating into combats is a godsend to tau armies, as you no longer can be hip-hop assaulted from unit to unit.

Tau drones do cause killpoint issues, but that can be mainly remedied by taking warfish instead of regular devilfish (warfish usually is a setup like this: devlifish w/smart missile system(replaces the killpoint giving drones), multi-tracker, disruption pod, targeting array).

Tau have amazing vehicle upgrades. Disruption pods give auto cover when being fired at from over 12' away. Multi-tracker makes the vehicle fire as if fast. Targeting array gives +1bs.

I haven't had too many problems with chimera melta vets. You can move as fast as his chimera with your vehicles, screen them with kroot, shoot him from range with railguns (hit the side...its an auto pen, +1 to damage chart for being ap1) and if he tries popping smoke, pathfinders can remove that cover (8 man squad averages 4 hits, thats 3 to remove cover and 1 to increase that railgun shot you are aiming at its side to BS 5(or 4 twinlinked with Bsides). As close to an auto hit, auto pen as possible :D Once the vehicle is imobilized or wreaked/exploded all that remains are slow and juicy guardsmen.


The key with tau (I play mech) is mobility, firing angles, target priority, and psychology. So far its done extremely well for me, although I admit I haven't played any ultra competitive games, usually just pick ups at my LGS.

WinglessVT2
06-01-2010, 11:19
Tau are all about the battlesuits and the kroot. Mobile, punishing firepower, and very cheap meatshield units, that conveniently gain very good cover saves in forests.

Deftoneus
06-01-2010, 13:48
I agree with dtjunkie19 in every respect.

Tau are not nearly as bad as people are making them out to be in this thread. Sure, they may not be top tier but they definatly can hurt quite a bit in the right hands.

I dont play them personally, but I play against them almost every week and they are a pain in my butt at times. (As an aside, my opponent playes a mech list that sounds very similar to dt's) The things that drive me crazy are:

Disruption Pods (Auto cover over 12")
Multi-tracker (Shoot as if fast)
Market Lights (Reducing cover saves on targerts)
Targetting Array (+1 BS).

Memnos
06-01-2010, 13:57
I'm going to agree with the last poster: Tau have several fairly effective configurations:

1) Ninja Tau - Since you can guarantee most of your deep-striking, reserve or outflanking units stay in reserve until close to the end thanks to clever wargear and Stealth Suits, you can suddenly deploy half your army, obliterate one objective point and take it, then dispute all the others. Just take the second turn, since most people want to take first turn.

2) Markerlight spam - Stealth suits and markerlight. Who cares about ignoring terrain if they can't shoot at you? Just stay outside of 21 inches of their ignoring terrain monster-vehicles and you're golden. Bonus: When they advance to kill you, you can pop out your outflanking Devilfish, run behind them 12 inches from the side and markerlight/missile them in the rear armor. Or cause one wound, then give a -6 penalty to Pinning tests. For this to work, remember that you need Marker Drones. Relentless and Markerlights are your friend.

Combine the two and you can eliminate threats to your Kroot, who will then show up at leisure to capture objectives.

Ninja Tau: They're what make the Tau still possible.

Pug Life
06-01-2010, 15:03
I have recently started playing Tau myself, and its not as bad as everyone would lead you to believe. You won't win every game, but if that's your goal I would encourage you to seek out a different hobby. If Tau is the army you like, stick with that. It's much more rewarding to play an army you enjoy the flavor of than to just grind out wins with another. When the new missions/scenarios book is released it will change the dynamic of a lot of armies and tactics because you won't be playing "Dawn of War" and "Objective Grab" every time.

Thud
06-01-2010, 15:19
Tau are not nearly as bad as people are making them out to be in this thread. Sure, they may not be top tier but they definatly can hurt quite a bit in the right hands.

QFT.

The people who are saying Tau suck seem to be under the impression that just because it are a shooty army it is a static fail-machine that is just waiting to get over-run in close combat and bleed cheap kill points. On the contrary, played right Tau can be very hard for an opponent to get to grips with.

borginator
06-01-2010, 15:43
I have to agree with the last couple of posters, Tau are a lot more tactical than other point and shoot/assault armies. I regularly face Tau with my guard army and I must say that would allocation shenanigans with shield drones can get frustrating when played right.

Mawchild
06-01-2010, 15:59
My mate has played tau for ages and while its taken a good few years and games to get it right, he's now at a stage where every game against him is a struggle.

The best advice I can give is this. If you're taking pathfinders take 2 squads, that way a hefty allocation of resources will be needed to deal with them, all the while freeing up your deadlier units to blast away with relative impunity. However if they are ignored and the suits targeted instead it becomes easy for you to prioritise targets and ensure what you want dead dies when you want it to.

El'Flashman
06-01-2010, 16:04
Tau are on the bottom end of the scale of playability right now IMO. Almost everything that came from 5th hurts Tau and almost all the new Armies are better than Tau. The things that hurt us the most are the new outflanking rules, cover saves, running and fast assaulting opponents. To play them you'll need to be aware of your local metagame, what armies do people play and how do they play them. In my experience Tau can still play well against certain armies such as Eldar and SM. However they run into difficulty against stuff like Orks, IG and anything with large amounts of outflanking and/or fast assault.

If you can I'd recommend playing something else because playing Tau is a very uphill game at the moment.

dtjunkie19
06-01-2010, 16:55
Actually El'Flashman I don't find that true at all. I have played two different mech ig lists multiple times, one of them being quite nasty (1200 pts and he had 6-7+ chimeras), and either drew or won against them. I also haven't had the same difficulties as you against orks.

New cover rules aren't that bad for tau. We can still ignore them when we need to via marketlights. Outflanking can be tough to deal with, but if you screen a board edge so he cant come in near your juicy vehicles/infantry, it becomes less dangerous.

Armies definitely not better than tau at the moment:
Demonhunters
Witch hunters (unless built in one of their 1 or 2 competitive builds)
Necrons
Dark Eldar (Again, unless built in their remaining competitive build)

Play tau if you like them OP. Worst comes to worst you learn to play the game better and lose every so often.

totgeboren
06-01-2010, 17:05
It must be said that if your main opponent is an IG tank-spammer, I don't think Tau are that bad.
Deep-striking suits with fusion/+(flamer/burst) take out tanks easily, and can then proceed to kill IG infantry both with shooting and in close combat.

Kroots outshoot and outfight IG, and can flank. Also, they can mess up vehicles in close combat given the chance. That S4 means any tank with AV10 in the back will be in a tough spot in they reach it.

The Hammerhead is a really vicious tank, with the 4+ save and a S10 Ap1 gun. A tough fight for the Lemans of the IG.

Broadsides are also very effective against guards, since they can use cover and the IG don't have many long-range Ap 2 pieplates, and the ones they do are direct fire, meaning you should be able to handle them.

The downside is the basic firewarriors, who cost abit too much. On the other hand their guns kill guards on a 2+, meaning he will likely not advance upon any position you have set up. They must be in cover though, otherwise they will get moved down quick.

If you have a decent amount of terrain, and some LOS blocking ones, Tau can compete.

They are not THE army if the game, but vs Tank IG, they fight and they can win.

El'Flashman
06-01-2010, 18:00
Actually El'Flashman I don't find that true at all. I have played two different mech ig lists multiple times, one of them being quite nasty (1200 pts and he had 6-7+ chimeras), and either drew or won against them. I also haven't had the same difficulties as you against orks.

Really? There's this guy who plays a vicious Mech IG list that has been giving me nightmares, he likes to take IG vets, three Valkyries a pair of Psychers, Demolisher, Manticore, Basalisk and a Chimera. The problem I've had against this is I can't focus on one part of his army and then move onto the next element. If you go for the artillery the Flying cav smash you, go for Valkryies and the artilery oblietrates you, go for the vets you're wasting your time as you'll get blown to pieces twice as hard and if you divide your fire your dead three ways from sunday. Yeah I've had a bad time against IG.

I'm sure there are certain IG lists Tau can do well against and if you tool for IG I'm sure you'll do fine but take an all comers list against a good IG list with a good IG player and you'll have a headache as all their toys are better than yours.


New cover rules aren't that bad for tau. We can still ignore them when we need to via marketlights. Outflanking can be tough to deal with, but if you screen a board edge so he cant come in near your juicy vehicles/infantry, it becomes less dangerous.

They aren't great either, they benefit others more than Tau. Frankly I like MLs but they're overpriced and difficult to get in a unit which won't be blown to pieces by any decent player. Plus if your opponent can saturate you with targets then the marker lights lose effectiveness.

As for screening board edges, this is good in theory but difficult to pull off effectively and certainly not reliable. As you've got to ask yourself what do you screen with? Kroot will die in droves, FW will die in droves, and placing vehicles near a board edge is an open invitation to flanking Multimetas.

Like I said in my post, the OP needs to know the local meta game, if the players in his area are competitive and know how to play well then Tau will always struggle. I also don't say this lightly, I played Tau in 4th and they were devastating, I rarely lost with them, but in 5th every battle is a struggle and I now rarely win with them. That's not to say they're unplayable but they're now significantly less forgiving and the OP will have to learn to play well just to get by with them.

dtjunkie19
06-01-2010, 18:12
Well I definitely admit to not having played against 3 valks. That would indeed be tough to handle.

As for screening, I meant literally screening the board edge. Imagine this (hopefully the diagram works):
|
|kkk
|kkk-DF
|kkk-DF
|kkk
|DF
|DF
|HH-HH-----HH
|HH-HH-----HH
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Each
HH
HH
block represents 1 vehicle (hammerhead obviously in that case)

If you know your opponent is outflanking troops, deploying like so and maneuvering your army to cover one board edge means that either he ends up coming in from the wrong board edge or is trapped by your units and forced to come in further back towards their own table edge.

Deftoneus
06-01-2010, 19:03
Well I definitely admit to not having played against 3 valks. That would indeed be tough to handle.
.

One of the lists I play against my Tau buddy with is a guard list that consists of two Vendetta Gunships, a demolisher and Chimelta-spam. It is hard for him to deal with for the same reasons that Flashman referred to: Too many targets to deal with.

Being on the other side of Tau, I have to make a comment about the one unit that causes me the most grief: He plays with a unit of two Broadsides with shield drones, always in cover, and always shooing my stuff!! That unit is the bane of my existance when i play against him.

I realize that unit is expensive, and quite static, but it WILL pretty much kill any vehicle it looks at, and is quite resiliant to boot.

I know the unit wont do much against a horde army...but I am only speaking from my own perspective on the matter, and since I dont play a mass infantry list I find that unit quite distressing.