How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

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Proiteus
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How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#1 » Nov 18 2016 06:58

My Tau army currently consists of a Stealth Optimised and Retailation Cadre, a Drone-Net and will soon be joined by a Riptide Wing.
Now I'm thinking of building a Ranged Support Cadre to use alongside my retaliation Cadre for both a good offence and defence. I was thinking 3 pairs of Missilesides and 5 man pathfinder teams plus a defence line to form a strong fire line. :evil:

But given that it requires 4 broadsides and pathfinders I feel the need to ask...
  • How good is this formation and what are your experiences using or playing against it?
  • Do you use the Pathfinder's infiltrate rules to position them with a homing beacon or keep them safe back in your deployment zone?
  • How many Broadsides and Pathfinders do you field and with what loadout?

I'd be grateful for any feedback on this as it is an expensive formation to field. :neutral:

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Elphiel
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#2 » Nov 18 2016 07:50

I field that formation pretty often and love it. Most of the time combined with a drone network. The synergy is just awesome.

I use the Pathfinders as dedicated markerlight teams. Around 6 Pathfinders per squad with grav inhib drone.
Infiltrate or not depends on the battlefield and terrain. So you are free to choose depending on the situation but placing them that extra 1-2 inch outside your deployment zone so they can reach a sweet position inside a building or other cover is exactly what they need. So they can fire their ML with full BS and get their stealth special rule ;) from round 1.

For the broadsides i pick two broadsides per unit with HRR and plasma. 4 missile drones and counter fire defence system. This boosts the formation defensive special rule and makes overwatch pretty deadly.

The drone net will be 4-6 squads of attack drones. These are my main infantry force. With BS3 these drones are quite the better firewarriors with their TEQ profile, high mobility and all these handy special rules like intercept, jinx and so on. Not to mention that the missile drones are BS3 too then.

With the markerlights counting as two for the broadsides, i just need to snapshot 1-3 to ruin pretty much every flyer with my broadsides HRR.
1 ml to ignore cover (no jinx for you!)
1-2 ml to improve BS from 1 to 3 or even 5. With sync weapons i regularly ruin someones day ;)

:edit: Also it just requires 3 units of broadsides and pathfinders.

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Shas'Ui
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#3 » Nov 18 2016 11:43

To be honest surprised you went Rail Rifle, was thinking of putting one on my Retaliation Cadre's Broadsides for the flanking shots but for the main unit I'm never seen much point?

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Elphiel
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#4 » Nov 18 2016 01:30

yep i know many prefer the missile pack. My experience so far was that the combined shots of 4 missile drone and the HRR was a good combination.
First i always like the little extra punch the DS1 shots give me against vehicles. These +2 on the penetration table (which is easier to reach thanks to S8) are quite effective and brought many vehicles to explosion in my games. Also their instant kill ability against most marines and other TEQ stuff brings me a little smile every here and there in the game. "Sure you have armor safe..., but not for these two extra hits." :D
Second with its longer range the HRR in this number can cover pretty much the whole table. So there is not much hiding my enemy can do, even if he stays out of 36"
Third, if getting assaulted, two sync HRR shots together with 4 sync plasma shots at BS2 all ignoring armor safe are pretty deadly, keeping in mind, that most units assaulting don't have cover safe anymore. Also if one of the pathfinder teams get assaulted every broadside team can give them overwatch and the range helps.
And last and propably the most important reason. I love the old broadside model with its HRR and hate the new one. So yeah HRR is my way to go ;)

Like I said, I combine drone net and ranged support cadre. So no riptides or hammerheads. The HRR is pretty much the only weapon against high T and high AV targets and i have good experience with it. If there is anything a tau army has too much its S7 and 5/5 weapons ;)
Perhaps its also because its not a single broadside but six of them. In my opinion the HRR gets better if you have more of them.

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Chris
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#5 » Nov 18 2016 04:10

I see, that the drone net is a good addition to the ranged support cadre, but it's more because the drone net is an excellent formation and fewer that it has great benefits in using both together.

That said I tried the ranged support cadre in my last game. Normally I prefer a more mobile playstyle. I usually go with Tetras and marker drones. This time I used 3 Pathfinder squads with 4 Pathfinders each. 1 Squad was shot down very quick in the first round of shooting due to massive enemy fire. Another squad was reduced and killed in the following turns and the third squad could survive the entire game.

But what was good? What was bad?

On the plus side is definitely the armor save. In put them in ruins and they had a 2+ cover save. That's great and make them last much longer. The bonus for the Broadsides was not used in the game, but is very good of course.

Last but not least I must say, that I couldn't use the markerlights to full effect due to bad line of sight to the enemy. With little enemy movement he could block line of sight to my Pathfinders and I couldn't react.

The Broadsides are an excellent unit and the possibility to bring 3 squads is very good. With little markerlightsupport they can be amazing. In my game I had two units of 2 Broadsides with 2 missilesrones and one Broadside with one missiledrone. They've done the job.

So, I have to say the following: I disliked the Pathfinders before the game and I dislike them now. But for me is the ranged support cadre the best and maybe the only option to bring Pathfinders on the table for markerlight shenanigans. In my humble opinion markerdrones and Tetras are better for pure markerlightsupport due their mobility. But that's something different. In that formation the Pathfinders are good due to the special rules and particularly the cover bonus.

Hope I could help

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Vector Strike
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#6 » Nov 20 2016 06:15

Just watch out that, following faq draft, scout DO count as moving from deploy space - so don't scout them or you'll lose the nifty cover bonus

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AnonAmbientLight
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Re: How good is the "Ranged Support Cadre" is it a good investment?

Post#7 » Nov 20 2016 05:48

I have not been a very big fan of Broadsides ever since the changes to them in 6th edition. The model and base has been increased without much compensation on the stat line. The rail rifle, while terribly OP then, is not as useful as it once was. It also is no longer as mobile as it used to be since they no longer even have access to S&P. T4 with 2W is a weakness and the reason why people do not normally take even terminators anymore.

The Broadsides get to double up on markerlights made by the pathfinders in this formation. That's not bad, but it's not very good either. Broadsides are already twinlinked, so any increase to their BS isn't going to be felt as much. Ignoring cover for one markerlight token isn't bad either. It would certainly help with target priority options, but it's very underwhelming when you look at everything this formation does, you know?

For me, the only thing that makes this formation worth taking is the buff that the pathfinders get. They become more durable and better equipped to do the job they need to do. In all honesty, they should get infiltrate by default.

As far as tactics go, the only way I would play this formation would be in a Dawn Blade Contingent. Here you could utilize the Mont'ka special rule to effectively give your broadsides Tank Hunter/Monster Hunter, as well as giving them a very strong shooting phase with the markerlight special rules in the formation.
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