Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

A review of Rules of Engagement from earlier encounters.
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Shas'El One Ronin
Shas'Saal
Posts: 32

Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

Post#1 » Dec 01 2016 08:07

Hello ATT Community. I'm an old time Tau player just getting back into the hobby after several Rulebook Edition changes and some Codex upgrades, and I need some advice from the community on Supporting Fire.

I ran my first game under the new rules/codex last weekend against a guy who has been playing for about 3 years and his Skitarri army. I was running a Hunter Cadre at just under 1000 points, but well within the requirements to be eligible for the Unbreakable Bonds of Comradeship boost to Supporting Fire.

At about Turn 3, his Sicarrian Infiltrators were about 9" from a 3-man Strike team (they took 2 casualties from shooting), so he declared a charge. My full squad of Pathfinders were right at 11" behind the Strike team, so within range to assist with Supporting Fire. However, my opponent pointed out that since the range on the PF Carbines is only 18", and the Infiltrators were 20" away from them, the PF could not contribute to supporting fire. I wasn't sure that was correct, but I didn't want to argue and derail the game, so we played it as he suggested.

When I got back home I did some research to see if that was the case. The only relevant info I could find was Page 7 of the Tau FAQ on the GW Facebook page that said "As long as a unit is eligible to fire Supporting fire and is equipped with one or more Flamers, they can use them as if they were also being charged."

The FAQ specifically references Flamers that are out of range, not other weapons that might be out of range when using Supporting Fire.

Is there some text somewhere in the Tau Codex that I missed that states the charging unit MUST be inside the Supporting Fire unit's weapon range when a charge is declared or it cannot contribute?

Has anyone else run into this in their games? If so, how have you handled it?

Thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide.
"Molon Labe." -Leonidas

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thezanji
Shas'La
Posts: 63

Re: Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

Post#2 » Dec 01 2016 09:13

Hello,

I can't provide you with a deffinitive answer, however I'm inclined to say that you indeed can't use the pulse carabines on that overwatch, it is a very uncommon case however, supporting fire says your pathfinders are treated as if they were being charged, however even for the annoying skirarii, a 20" charge is impossible, so using a little bit of logic I supose they wouldn't be able to shoot their carabines, but they could indeed shot their markerlights to help other units improve their overwatch.

sorry to be of so little help.

Tau'va.

Dal'yth Shas'len'ra
Shas'Ui
Posts: 208

Re: Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

Post#3 » Dec 01 2016 11:59

I would agree with your opponent since template weapons already have rules that ignore range during overwatch. There is no location in the codex that I can recall where it states that the weapons must be in range, however the appropriate section of the BRB says:

BRB pg. 45 wrote:An Overwatch attack is resolved like a normal shooting attack (albeit one resolved in the enemy's assault phase) and uses all the normal rules for range, line of sight cover saves and so on.


So the only thing left would be whether the pathfinders count as being where the strike team is or where they currently are. I've always played this part as if the unit was at its current location, so if their out of range their out of range.

So I would say that your Pathfinders couldn't fire their pulse carbines, but they could fire their markerlights

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AnonAmbientLight
Shas'La
Posts: 758

Re: Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

Post#4 » Dec 01 2016 07:41

Your opponent had the right interpretation. Overwatch happens as soon as your opponent declares a charge, but before he rolls his charge dice.

Supporting Fire is a Tau specific special rule that allows models that have the rule, and are within X inches of the unit being charged, to also be able to fire Overwatch. The rules for Overwatch still apply to those models that are using Supporting Fire.

Your pathfinders were out of range to use their pulse carbines, but not out of range to use their Markerlights. In which case you might have been able to utilize those Markerlights for your strike team but I'd have to double check on that assumption.

Edit: As far as I can tell, the BRB does not outline the order in which Overwatch happens in the case of Supporting Fire. The FAQs do not really seem to clear it up either. ITC FAQ states that each eligible unit that can Supporting Fire may do so one at a time at player discretion. This seems like a logical order of operations. So in OP's description, his pathfinders could have fired Overwatch using markerlights, then used any markerlights on the target to assist other units using Supporting Fire.

Flamers have the special rule called "Wall of Death" which allows them to fire during Overwatch at any range. This gets absurd with Tau because of the Supporting Fire ruling. Basically you could have a Kroot konga-line all the way up to your opponent's deployment zone and your crisis suits in your deployment zone could fire Overwatch if that Kroot unit should it get charged. Assuming of course the Crisis Suits are within the required distance to provide Supporting Fire to those Kroot. You get the idea.
Sky IS Falling, T'au WILL Suck, Sell Me Your Models

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Shas'El One Ronin
Shas'Saal
Posts: 32

Re: Seeking clarification on Supporting Fire and weapon Range

Post#5 » Dec 02 2016 08:00

Thanks for the consensus, everyone.

For the record, I did end up shooting the PF's Markerlights at the unit, and it did help a little with the FW shooting.

It looks like we ruled it the right way, based on feedback from the community, but I am a little disappointed that there isn't a FAQ listing or hard rule somewhere that specifies how this works.

Thanks again for the feedback. You guys rock!
"Molon Labe." -Leonidas

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