Pathfinders' alternative weapons

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Nitrogue
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Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#1 » Jan 19 2018 08:42

Just got a box of pathfinders, and currently thinking of fielding them as all with Pulse Carbines and Markerlights. I havent had a full look at the options, so may have missed something, but my understanding of their wargear is i can swap out up to 3 carbines and their markerlights for ion and rail rifles.

Are these worth it or is it best to go with my original idea of maximising how many Valkyrie's Marks I could get down.

Other thing is what drones are good. Im guessing marker drones, a grav inhibitor and maybe a recon?

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Arka0415
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#2 » Jan 19 2018 08:55

Nitrogue wrote:Just got a box of pathfinders, and currently thinking of fielding them as all with Pulse Carbines and Markerlights. I havent had a full look at the options, so may have missed something, but my understanding of their wargear is i can swap out up to 3 carbines and their markerlights for ion and rail rifles.

Are these worth it or is it best to go with my original idea of maximising how many Valkyrie's Marks I could get down.

Other thing is what drones are good. Im guessing marker drones, a grav inhibitor and maybe a recon?

All Pathfinder weapons are good. Overall Markerlights are the best things you can take (since they buff the rest of your army) but Ion Rifles aren't bad- they're cheap and offer a nice punch. Rail Rifles are really powerful, but they make the Pathfinder squad a fragile, primary target.

I'd make 2 Shas'ui w/ Markerlights, 5 Pathfinders w/ Markerlights, and 3 Pathfinders with Ion Rifles, to keep your bases covered.

Right now Gun Drones are better than Grav/Pulse Accelerator Drones, so you might want to just make Gun Drones for the time being. Consider magnetizing or just press-fitting them, since you might want to change them in the future.

Nitrogue
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#3 » Jan 19 2018 10:10

Arka0415 wrote:
Nitrogue wrote:Just got a box of pathfinders, and currently thinking of fielding them as all with Pulse Carbines and Markerlights. I havent had a full look at the options, so may have missed something, but my understanding of their wargear is i can swap out up to 3 carbines and their markerlights for ion and rail rifles.

Are these worth it or is it best to go with my original idea of maximising how many Valkyrie's Marks I could get down.

Other thing is what drones are good. Im guessing marker drones, a grav inhibitor and maybe a recon?

All Pathfinder weapons are good. Overall Markerlights are the best things you can take (since they buff the rest of your army) but Ion Rifles aren't bad- they're cheap and offer a nice punch. Rail Rifles are really powerful, but they make the Pathfinder squad a fragile, primary target.

I'd make 2 Shas'ui w/ Markerlights, 5 Pathfinders w/ Markerlights, and 3 Pathfinders with Ion Rifles, to keep your bases covered.

Right now Gun Drones are better than Grav/Pulse Accelerator Drones, so you might want to just make Gun Drones for the time being. Consider magnetizing or just press-fitting them, since you might want to change them in the future.


Ok, will have a proper look at the gun stats later, but thanks for the views. I feel at the moment with my army, the only real ML benefits i can use are the 1st and 5th ones, so 7 MLs should be enough for the first on a few targets.

Whats the benfit to running 2 pathfinder squads? im guessing can avoid getting swarmed in a single charge, more mobile and can see more of the field, but would offer up another potential victory point.

Still preferring a WYSIWYG army, and gun drones are going to my XV8s, then my fire warriors and then the pathfinders if i have any. I am using friction fit purely for the option of being able to swap them out later

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Arka0415
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#4 » Jan 19 2018 10:16

Nitrogue wrote:Whats the benfit to running 2 pathfinder squads? im guessing can avoid getting swarmed in a single charge, more mobile and can see more of the field, but would offer up another potential victory point.

The idea is that (a) you get more units in your Outrider Detachment and thus another Command Point, (b) the squad will take fewer losses due to morale, and (c) most importantly the squads can fire at different times, allowing you to get hits, assess the battlefield, and choose the next target for more Markerlights.

Nitrogue wrote:Still preferring a WYSIWYG army, and gun drones are going to my XV8s, then my fire warriors and then the pathfinders if i have any. I am using friction fit purely for the option of being able to swap them out later

The idea here is that Pathfinder Drones don't actually benefit Markerlight-using Pathfinders, so you just don't need them. Better to run Tactical Drone units or XV8-accompanying Gun Drones. By and large, Gun Drones are not really worth it on infantry.

Nitrogue
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#5 » Jan 19 2018 10:45

Arka0415 wrote:The idea is that (a) you get more units in your Outrider Detachment and thus another Command Point, (b) the squad will take fewer losses due to morale, and (c) most importantly the squads can fire at different times, allowing you to get hits, assess the battlefield, and choose the next target for more Markerlights.

Fair enough. Still very green to all of this, so don't really know much about detachments or command points, but i suppose if its easier to fill them/get them the better.

Arka0415 wrote:The idea here is that Pathfinder Drones don't actually benefit Markerlight-using Pathfinders, so you just don't need them. Better to run Tactical Drone units or XV8-accompanying Gun Drones. By and large, Gun Drones are not really worth it on infantry.

So any drones i do field with the pathfinders, should just wander off to other units? so gun drones to the XV8s, markers to the fire warriors?

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CDR_Farsight
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#6 » Jan 19 2018 11:52

Don't discount the drones that come with the Pathfinders. They do some pretty good stuff and you can take up to 5 if you take all of the different types, which is a good size. If you are using special weapons in your teams, the shield drones add some durability while the Grav drone keeps them from being tied up in CC turn 1. The pulse accelerator drone doesn't benefit the pathfinders much since they should be marking and not shooting, but it can make the firewarriors reach out further if you're taking lots of them. The recon drone is good for Ion and Rail Pathfinders since any unit targeted by the recon drone doesn't get cover from pathfinder units. It makes it easier to shoot objective campers out of cover.

Interestingly, I was reading through the devilfish entry yesterday, and it appears when the Recon drone is mounted in the devilfish, nothing gets a cover bonus when it targets them. I don't know if this is just poor wording or if the Recon Drone gets wider dissemination of its data or something.

"Units attacked by a Devilfish with an MB3 Recon Drone embarked within it do not gain any bonuses to their saving throws for being in cover."

The Recon Drone entry for Pathfinders specifically mentions that it only applies to pathfinders; however, RAW for the Devilfish entry appears to apply to everything since it does not follow the pathfinder entry and say for the devilfish only. I could see the argument going either way; however the precedent was set with how they worded the Pathfinder entry.

It may be interesting if you already plan to mount up your pathfinders in a devilfish to add a recon drone that never gets out just to go around and deny cover bonuses to units...especially since each weapon can target independently so you can deny up to 6 units cover a turn (one for the recon drone, one for the burst cannon, and two for each embarked gun drone or one per SMS)
To secure victory, the wise must adapt ~ Puretide

Nymphomanius
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#7 » Jan 19 2018 02:47

CDR_Farsight wrote:It may be interesting if you already plan to mount up your pathfinders in a devilfish to add a recon drone that never gets out just to go around and deny cover bonuses to units...especially since each weapon can target independently so you can deny up to 6 units cover a turn (one for the recon drone, one for the burst cannon, and two for each embarked gun drone or one per SMS)


You're misreading that, a unit shot at by a devilfish with a recon drone embarked can't take cover saves FROM THOSE SHOTS it doesn't remove the cover also the recon drone is embarked and can't fire it's weapon either...

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Arka0415
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#8 » Jan 19 2018 06:54

Nitrogue wrote:
Arka0415 wrote:The idea here is that Pathfinder Drones don't actually benefit Markerlight-using Pathfinders, so you just don't need them. Better to run Tactical Drone units or XV8-accompanying Gun Drones. By and large, Gun Drones are not really worth it on infantry.

So any drones i do field with the pathfinders, should just wander off to other units? so gun drones to the XV8s, markers to the fire warriors?

This advice is just if you're playing competitively, but, drones don't really benefit infantry, and the squad size of 2 models is too small. So, give as many drones to your battlesuits as you can. With the remaining drones, make Tactical Drone units of at least 4-5 models. If you want to take Pathfinder drones, then make the unit 2x Shield, 1x Grav-Inhibitor, 1x Pulse Accelerator, and have the drone unit wander off to buff a large number of Fire Warriors.

Nitrogue
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#9 » Jan 20 2018 06:35

fair enough

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Orion7
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#10 » Jan 21 2018 05:11

I'm not sure that the recon drone cannot fire you know.
Sure it's embarked, but the rule specifically refers to it as a turret mounting. So I'd count it as an extra weapon for the devilfish, same way attached gun drones work. After all, the gun is outside the fish (I'd say confirmed by the fact that it doesn't count towards capacity, despite being about four times the size of a normal drone)


Limitations? You mean you don't want Fido the kroot hound as a character?

Nymphomanius
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#11 » Jan 21 2018 05:54

Orion7 wrote:I'm not sure that the recon drone cannot fire you know.
Sure it's embarked, but the rule specifically refers to it as a turret mounting. So I'd count it as an extra weapon for the devilfish, same way attached gun drones work. After all, the gun is outside the fish (I'd say confirmed by the fact that it doesn't count towards capacity, despite being about four times the size of a normal drone)


No its says "if a recon drone is embarked on the devilfish enemy units may not take cover saves against its weapons"

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Arka0415
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#12 » Jan 21 2018 07:15

Yeah, I don't think anything allows the Recon Drone to shoot.

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gunrock
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#13 » Jan 21 2018 08:33

Nitrogue wrote:
Whats the benfit to running 2 pathfinder squads? im guessing can avoid getting swarmed in a single charge, more mobile and can see more of the field, but would offer up another potential victory point.


I'd like to bring up a point about pathfinder marker light in general. I think they're best used for getting markerlights on the first turn. After first turn there is a good chance they'll be dead unless they can get to cover. Running only one squad of pathfinders is pretty much a guarantee that they'll be singled out and killed as most people (even those that don't really know our army) know to attack our markerlight base. A second and third squad increases the likelyhood you'll get at least two turns of basic marker light support. To sum up my point, pathfinders are much better at 'front loading' markerlights, but less well adapted to providing later turn marker light support where a distributed marker light base is probably preferable. Consequently, I think they work better in deep-strike armies where you're already attempting to front load all of your damage, as opposed to slower gun line armies where you may be depending on multiple turns of compounding shooting backed by marker lights.

My issue with the recon drone is twofold:
1. they only benefit pathfinders
2. the burst cannon does not benefit from pulse accelerator drone creating weird distancing issues

Most strategies have focused on using the pulse accelerator with strike teams to get 18'' rapid fire and 36' inch range. I haven't tried this, but I suspect the better use may be in conjunction with gun drone squads were the 24'' range combined with 8'' movement and fly would significantly improve their utility as a skirmish unit. The problem is the recon and Grav inhibitor are pretty useless in this configuration, and a 2 gun drone +1 PA drone is still a fairly anemic squad, but if you get even one turn of use it may be worth it. If the buffs from the recon drone weren't so restrictive I think recon + PA + 2 gun drones would be a very easy unit to build into gun drone oriented armies as an additional virtual gun drone squad.

My general guideline for PF is to run three to every target you intend to mark on first turn. This both covers probable losses and also remains points efficient even if you lose the whole squad. For example with fusion commanders, the increase in damage from running marker light support is on parity with the ppw of shooting without markerlight at around 27 points, so as long as you've spent less then that and get at least 1 hit. It's kinda a strange proof, but I still think it provides a good baseline for figuring out how many PF to run in a list.
All the rivers run into the sea, Yet the sea is not full; Unto the place whither the rivers go, Thither they go again.

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Arka0415
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#14 » Jan 21 2018 08:52

gunrock wrote:
Nitrogue wrote:Whats the benfit to running 2 pathfinder squads? im guessing can avoid getting swarmed in a single charge, more mobile and can see more of the field, but would offer up another potential victory point.

I'd like to bring up a point about pathfinder marker light in general. I think they're best used for getting markerlights on the first turn. After first turn there is a good chance they'll be dead unless they can get to cover.

Yup, alpha strike and damage-frontloading is so important. Pathfinders drop mass Markerlights on turn 1-2, and once they're dead, the Markerlight burden falls on backup units- FIreblades, Fire Warrior Shas'ui, Marker Drones, and anywhere else where Markerlights might be hidden, like on Sun Shark Bombers.

Nymphomanius
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#15 » Jan 21 2018 09:47

Just remember if you're taking special weapons pathfinders though a recon drone not only gives the benefits of ignore cover but has 2 wounds it can tank for saviour protocols for 4pts cheaper than 2 gun drones

Nitrogue
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#16 » Jan 21 2018 11:32

good points there, guess i just need to get into some games and play around to see what sort of thing i like to play as.

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CDR_Farsight
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#17 » Jan 22 2018 09:43

Nymphomanius wrote:
CDR_Farsight wrote:It may be interesting if you already plan to mount up your pathfinders in a devilfish to add a recon drone that never gets out just to go around and deny cover bonuses to units...especially since each weapon can target independently so you can deny up to 6 units cover a turn (one for the recon drone, one for the burst cannon, and two for each embarked gun drone or one per SMS)


You're misreading that, a unit shot at by a devilfish with a recon drone embarked can't take cover saves FROM THOSE SHOTS it doesn't remove the cover also the recon drone is embarked and can't fire it's weapon either...


I understand what it is probably intended to be. I even put that in my original post, but that's not what the rule says. The pathfinder rule specifically says it only applies to pathfinders; however, the Devilfish rule does not have any specific mention of what units it applies to. That was the whole point of the post. I'm not misreading it...I'm reading it exactly as written...I'm just not applying implied intent to it.
To secure victory, the wise must adapt ~ Puretide

Nymphomanius
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Re: Pathfinders' alternative weapons

Post#18 » Jan 22 2018 09:50

CDR_Farsight wrote:
Nymphomanius wrote:
CDR_Farsight wrote:It may be interesting if you already plan to mount up your pathfinders in a devilfish to add a recon drone that never gets out just to go around and deny cover bonuses to units...especially since each weapon can target independently so you can deny up to 6 units cover a turn (one for the recon drone, one for the burst cannon, and two for each embarked gun drone or one per SMS)


You're misreading that, a unit shot at by a devilfish with a recon drone embarked can't take cover saves FROM THOSE SHOTS it doesn't remove the cover also the recon drone is embarked and can't fire it's weapon either...


I understand what it is probably intended to be. I even put that in my original post, but that's not what the rule says. The pathfinder rule specifically says it only applies to pathfinders; however, the Devilfish rule does not have any specific mention of what units it applies to. That was the whole point of the post. I'm not misreading it...I'm reading it exactly as written...I'm just not applying implied intent to it.


Ok well let me know if you find anyone who will let you do that because I certainly wouldn't.

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