New to Tau, need help building army

Discuss and develop your army list amongst new players and veterans alike.
User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

New to Tau, need help building army

Post#1 » Jan 19 2018 11:30

Hello ATT,

I'm fairly new to the game and am enjoying building up my army. I played for the first time this weekend with my army and had a good time playing. I’ll admit, I’m slow at painting and modeling. I would like to start working towards a fairly competitive army, and with the codex still not out, I've been magnetizing many of my models (besides the generic soldiers such as fire warriors and pathfinders). I'm a bit limited on what I can purchase now, but I do have a gift card to Miniature mMarket where I could squeeze in a couple more minis. What I'm trying to figure out, is what units I should focus on getting next to make a formidable army.

The armies I would be playing against most right now are Space Wolves, Necrons, and Tyranids. The terrain and size of the table varies depending on where we play. Feel free to suggest different builds with my units since I do have them magnetized. My current list of available units are:

    Stormsurge
    Ghostkeel
    Riptide
    2 Hammerheads (one being Longstrike)
    Commander
    Coldstar Commander
    Shadowsun
    Farsight
    Cadre Fireblade
    2 groups of Strike Team Fire Warriors
    2 groups of pathfinders
    6 crisis suits
    2 Ethereals
    1 Pirahana
    2 broadsides (missile setup - not magnetized)
    3 stealth battlesuits
    Multiple types of drones (magnetized)

What I'm trying to decide, is do I go with another ghostkeel and another unit of stealth suits, wait for the codex to come out to see if new units are released, or just sit tight for a while and continue working on what I have? I would also be open to other suggestions. I am limited to what's on Miniature Market at the moment.

Thanks for taking the time to read over this and offer any suggestions!

Cgreeves
Shas
Posts: 54

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#2 » Jan 19 2018 11:54

I would say that you can never go wrong with another commander. I know that you can use crisis suits as commanders but I like the commander model now. It also gives you another CIB. They seem to be our go to models at the moment.

However I think sitting tight at the moment is also a good move until we see our dex, but you may like me feel that you want more painting to keep you occupied.

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#3 » Jan 19 2018 12:10

Yeah I have done some research and found that commanders are always nice to have. I was tossing that idea around as well. But are they still as useful since their Master of War ability now is only 1 commander per game? (unless you have farsight or shadowsun of course). Do you feel 2 ghostkeels are good to have around?

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#4 » Jan 19 2018 12:35

Also, how would I get separate bits for the CIB?

User avatar
Draaen
Shas'La
Shas'La
Posts: 158

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#5 » Jan 19 2018 02:59

BothanJedi wrote:Hello ATT,
What I'm trying to decide, is do I go with another ghostkeel and another unit of stealth suits, wait for the codex to come out to see if new units are released, or just sit tight for a while and continue working on what I have? I would also be open to other suggestions. I am limited to what's on Miniature Market at the moment.


I would sit tight for the codex (Rumored March take that with salt). If you can't wait that long play some games with stealth suits and ghostkeels and see which you prefer and get an idea of what would help you out more. If you can't wait that long I would go for the ghostkeel since it would be easier to pick up a squad of stealth suits later if you felt you needed it. Stealth suits I think are better at the moment but with a new codex change coming anything can change.

Just a reminder though I would recommend holding off and buying models until after the codex release. Being restricted on purchases helped me focus on painting which made me much faster and might do the same for you. I'd paint up some of your HQs and some troops as they are likely to be in all your lists when the codex hits.

For CIBs you need to get them off of bits sites or ebay but they are expensive since they only come in the commander box. Or you can go for 3rd party manufacturers. I've gotten stuff from here before and I've heard good reviews about these http://www.reddogminis.com/catalog/item ... 338245.htm.
All empires fall you just have to know where to push

User avatar
gunrock
Shas
Posts: 110

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#6 » Jan 19 2018 03:16

Hey Jedi,
You have a pretty good chunk of units to build a competitive/semi-competitive list with.

These are all 'high-tier':
BothanJedi wrote:Commander
Coldstar Commander
Cadre Fireblade
2 groups of Strike Team Fire Warriors
2 groups of pathfinders
6 crisis suits
3 stealth battlesuits
Multiple types of drones (magnetized)
[/list]


These are usually mid-tier, but still very playable in the right list:

BothanJedi wrote:Stormsurge
Ghostkeel
Pirahana
[/list]


These you should probably hold off on running until something happens with the codex:

BothanJedi wrote:2 Hammerheads (one being Longstrike)
Riptide
Shadowsun
Farsight
2 Ethereals
2 broadsides (missile setup - not magnetized)
[/list]


BothanJedi wrote:Yeah I have done some research and found that commanders are always nice to have. I was tossing that idea around as well. But are they still as useful since their Master of War ability now is only 1 commander per game? (unless you have farsight or shadowsun of course). Do you feel 2 Ghostkeels are good to have around?


Commander is still the best unit in the index and worth bringing multiples of despite the 1 use limit on master of war. His strength is based on his points efficiency + high ballistic skill + character rules + deepstrike that makes him the ideal candidate for attacking armor, and a variety of other roles. Just glancing at the list, the two other units that have traditionally dealt with armor (broadsides, and hammerheads) are both in a bad spot which makes 4x fusion commander the preferred tank-buster. People have mixed feeling about the Ghostkeel. I like them, but generally consider taking fusion commanders first.

BothanJedi wrote:Also, how would I get separate bits for the CIB?


A couple different people 3d print them including ATT's gragagrogog. You can find them under his 3d print thread here:

viewtopic.php?f=21&t=26575&p=335536&hilit=CIB+shapeways#p335536

In terms of figuring out what you need, you already have most of what you need to build the basic mixed-gunline/deepstrike base which looks something like this:

Gunline:
Cadre Fireblade - pulse rifle, markerlight (42)
Strike team - 5x pulse rifle, 1x markerlight (43)
Strike team - 5x pulse rifle, 1x markerlight (43)
Strike team - 5x pulse rifle, 1x markerlight (43)
Pathfinder - 5x pulse carbine, 5x markerlight (40)
Pathfinder - 5x pulse carbine, 5x markerlight (40) or (3x ion rifle)
Pathfinder - 5x pulse carbine, 5x markerlight (40) or (3x ion rifle)

Interdiction:
Commander - 4x Fusion blaster, 2x shield drone (176)
XV-8 - 6x CIB, 3x ATS, 6x gun drone (306) or (9x CIB, 8x CIB+DC, 9x Flamer, 8x Flamer DC)
if Flamer add:
XV-25 - 3x burst cannon, 1x homing beacon (110)

Beyond that you have a lot of options based on play style.
Last edited by gunrock on Jan 19 2018 07:24, edited 1 time in total.
All the rivers run into the sea, Yet the sea is not full; Unto the place whither the rivers go, Thither they go again.

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#7 » Jan 19 2018 04:05

Awesome, thank you for the recommendations! I'll look at trying to pick up a few more CIB bits and will probably take apart my coldstar so I can magnetize between fusion and coldstar. That will give me options with the two commanders I have right now. Beyond that, I'll wait for the codex and just work on painting what I have to be ready to go when the codex drops. Thanks again! Great suggestions here.

User avatar
Arka0415
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 3288

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#8 » Jan 19 2018 07:14

Hello my identical twin! :D

Looks like you already have a great collection, and many of those are competitive too, as gunrock pointed out.

For CIBs I highly recommend Red Dog's one, it's a beautiful, high-quality cast: http://www.reddogminis.com/catalog/item ... 338245.htm

But the Shapeways one posted earlier is a solid option too.

By the way, here's my take on a 2000-point list using your models:

-

HQ - Commander w/ 4x Fusion Blasters; 2x Shield Drones (176)
HQ - Coldstar Commander w/ High-Output Burst Cannon, Missile Pod, Shield Generator, ATS (150)
HQ - Cadre Fireblade w/ Markerlight; 2x Shield Drones (58)
Troops - 6x Fire Warriors w/ Markerlight (51)
Troops - 6x Fire Warriors w/ Markerlight (51)
Troops - 6x Fire Warriors w/ Markerlight (51)
Elites - 3x XV8s w/ 8x Cyclic Ion Blasters, Drone Controller; 6x Gun Drones (323)
Elites - 3x XV8s w/ 8x Cyclic Ion Blasters, Drone Controller; 6x Gun Drones (323)
Elites - 3x Stealthsuits w/ 3x Burst Cannons; 2x Shield Drones (106)
Elites - Ghostkeel w/ Cyclic Ion Raker, 2x Flamers, Target Lock, ATS; 2x Stealth Drones (179)
Fast Attack - 6x Pathfinders w/ 6x Markerlights (48)
Fast Attack - 6x Pathfinders w/ 6x Markerlights (48)
LoW - Stormsurge w/ Pulse Blastcannon, 2x Burst Cannons, Shield Generator, Stimulant Injector, ATS (437)

Total: 2001 - Command Points: 7 (1 Battalion Detachment, 1 Vanguard Detachment, 1 Super-Heavy Auxiliary)

-

Flamers on the Ghostkeel is something that's worth trying out, since it might be a handy tool against hordes. Feel free to try out Flamer XV8s too. Anyway, what do you think?

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#9 » Jan 21 2018 10:50

Hey Arka!

Great suggestions here. I have my Crisis suits magnetized and have been playing around with the flamers. I need to get some more bits when budget permits for CIBs, plus would like to get a couple more commanders. I've been toying with the idea of taking apart my Coldstar so I can magnetize between the fusion and the coldstar, but I think I'll probably just hold off, as it seems like a Coldstar always has his place. I'll just pick up a couple more commanders for the fusion builds.

Do you have a suggestion on where I could pick up another Stealth drone or two without buying another ghostkeel?

Great suggestion here on the army. I'll definitely try it out once I get those other bits! The suggestion of the flamers on the ghostkeel is an interesting suggestion. Last time I played, my ghostkeel got rushed pretty quickly, in order to negate his abilities of when an enemy shoots him at 12+ inches. Having flamers on him might keep those units back or at least punish them for getting too close.

Definitely gives me some things to think about! Thank you my brother/twin!

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#10 » Jan 21 2018 11:04

Arka0415 wrote:For CIBs I highly recommend Red Dog's one, it's a beautiful, high-quality cast: http://www.reddogminis.com/catalog/item ... 338245.htm


Also, to add to my previous comment, if I use a bit from Red Dog, does that go against any tournament rules being that it's not a GW bit? Never done a tournament before but I'd like to work towards one.

Thanks again my brother/twin!

User avatar
Arka0415
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 3288

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#11 » Jan 22 2018 01:41

BothanJedi wrote:Great suggestions here. I have my Crisis suits magnetized and have been playing around with the flamers. I need to get some more bits when budget permits for CIBs, plus would like to get a couple more commanders. I've been toying with the idea of taking apart my Coldstar so I can magnetize between the fusion and the coldstar, but I think I'll probably just hold off, as it seems like a Coldstar always has his place. I'll just pick up a couple more commanders for the fusion builds.

The Coldstar is a solid choice- not a lot of firepower, but it has a lot of utility, especially if your opponent is a non-assault army too. About CIBs, do you want to only use guns that you own in your collection? Or would you be okay proxying guns?

If you don't want to proxy or use counts-as weapons, count up your guns and let me know- I can think of some good XV8 builds with them.

BothanJedi wrote:Do you have a suggestion on where I could pick up another Stealth drone or two without buying another ghostkeel?

I'm curious, why do you want more Stealth Drones? The Ghostkeel has two by default and can't take more. Unless you want to use them in a conversion? Anyway, I think the best place would be eBay, there's usually at least one listing. Here's one I found for example: https://www.ebay.com/itm/WARHAMMER-40K- ... Sw8b1aQ~ND

BothanJedi wrote:The suggestion of the flamers on the ghostkeel is an interesting suggestion. Last time I played, my ghostkeel got rushed pretty quickly, in order to negate his abilities of when an enemy shoots him at 12+ inches. Having flamers on him might keep those units back or at least punish them for getting too close.

The Flamers on the Ghostkeel are for a few reasons. Your army already has plenty of 18" guns so the Burst Cannons don't feel necessary, the Ghostkeel is better protected against charges, and it's easier to get the Flamers in range using the Ghostkeel's infiltrate. That said, if you want more skirmish ability, the Burst Cannons are probably better.

BothanJedi wrote:If I use a bit from Red Dog, does that go against any tournament rules being that it's not a GW bit? Never done a tournament before but I'd like to work towards one.

I really doubt it. I mean, if you somehow kitbashed an XV8 using 99% Red Dog bits to the point that it was unrecognizable as an XV8, of course that would go against rules. But use a Red Dog head or gun? No problem at all. Personally I've never heard of a tournament that's that strict, but who knows- maybe there are some out there?

Lore
Shas
Posts: 51

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#12 » Jan 22 2018 02:07

Since you actually play and have a number of set opponents or at least armies regularly faced I would suggest buying based on results / games played, so if you've found your Broadsides to be highly effective Vs Nids consider adding a third. Also consider ineffective units & why they are not achieving - is it due to there being too few? Would two extra Piranha make a difference? Knowing your enemies and routinely playing against them will provide invaluable help. Buy only what is working for you Vs your opponents; that said your list seems very troops light.

I think you only have 2 troops so need another 1 just to field a Battalion & pick up the CPs, consider Kroot or Breachers but if not keen more Strike teams. As already suggested you could field these in 5s or 6s but you will still need another set if you are ever going to field a Brigade.

I'm very old and inexperienced passed 5th ed, but I think this is valid advice?

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#13 » Jan 22 2018 08:19

Arka0415 wrote:The Coldstar is a solid choice- not a lot of firepower, but it has a lot of utility, especially if your opponent is a non-assault army too. About CIBs, do you want to only use guns that you own in your collection? Or would you be okay proxying guns?

If you don't want to proxy or use counts-as weapons, count up your guns and let me know- I can think of some good XV8 builds with them.


I'm definitely not against using some proxied weapons. I just don't know how to make them myself. Is that with a 3D printer and some specific filament? I have a couple friends that have a 3D printer, one of which plays 40k. If I have to get some of Red Dog's, I'd totally be fine with that. They look like really good pieces. It may just be a while before I can pick them up.

Arka0415 wrote:I'm curious, why do you want more Stealth Drones? The Ghostkeel has two by default and can't take more. Unless you want to use them in a conversion? Anyway, I think the best place would be eBay, there's usually at least one listing. Here's one I found for example: https://www.ebay.com/itm/WARHAMMER-40K- ... Sw8b1aQ~ND


I picked up my ghostkeel secondhand and only have 1 stealth drone. I think I'll be able to get the other, but in the event that I can't, I wanted to have a backup plan.

Arka0415 wrote:I really doubt it. I mean, if you somehow kitbashed an XV8 using 99% Red Dog bits to the point that it was unrecognizable as an XV8, of course that would go against rules. But use a Red Dog head or gun? No problem at all. Personally I've never heard of a tournament that's that strict, but who knows- maybe there are some out there?


This is kind of what I figured, but just wanted to make sure. Thanks for the response!!

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#14 » Jan 22 2018 08:22

Lore wrote:Since you actually play and have a number of set opponents or at least armies regularly faced I would suggest buying based on results / games played, so if you've found your Broadsides to be highly effective Vs Nids consider adding a third. Also consider ineffective units & why they are not achieving - is it due to there being too few? Would two extra Piranha make a difference? Knowing your enemies and routinely playing against them will provide invaluable help. Buy only what is working for you Vs your opponents; that said your list seems very troops light.

I think you only have 2 troops so need another 1 just to field a Battalion & pick up the CPs, consider Kroot or Breachers but if not keen more Strike teams. As already suggested you could field these in 5s or 6s but you will still need another set if you are ever going to field a Brigade.

I'm very old and inexperienced passed 5th ed, but I think this is valid advice?


This is sound advice. You are not the only one who has told me my army seems kind of troop light. I might pick up a box of firewarriors and make either another strike team or some breachers. I would like to find some kroot or kroot hounds to play around with to see how I like them.

User avatar
Arka0415
Shas'Vre
Shas'Vre
Posts: 3288

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#15 » Jan 22 2018 08:41

BothanJedi wrote:I'm definitely not against using some proxied weapons. I just don't know how to make them myself. Is that with a 3D printer and some specific filament? I have a couple friends that have a 3D printer, one of which plays 40k. If I have to get some of Red Dog's, I'd totally be fine with that. They look like really good pieces. It may just be a while before I can pick them up.

No need to go that far! :D "Proxying" is just saying that a certain item (a piece of wargear, or a paperclip, whatever), counts as something else. If you want to try out CIBs, stick on Plasma Rifles wherever you would put a CIB and proxy it as a CIB. If you like it, then buy some parts from Red Dog or Shapeways! By the way, one of our own from ATT put these together, they're very nice: https://www.shapeways.com/product/A3RN8 ... arketplace

BothanJedi wrote:I picked up my ghostkeel secondhand and only have 1 stealth drone. I think I'll be able to get the other, but in the event that I can't, I wanted to have a backup plan.

Oh, okay! I guess that eBay or an online bits seller would be the only option.

BothanJedi wrote:You are not the only one who has told me my army seems kind of troop light. I might pick up a box of firewarriors and make either another strike team or some breachers. I would like to find some kroot or kroot hounds to play around with to see how I like them.

Being "light" on troops isn't really the issue, rather, it's the benefits that troops provide. In this case, it's the extra CP you could get for having just one more troops choice.

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#16 » Jan 22 2018 12:30

Arka0415 wrote:Oh, okay! I guess that eBay or an online bits seller would be the only option.


I was looking at your army list and battle reports. Those are really helpful! It's getting me some ideas as well. Ultimately, I think I would like to get at least 2 more commanders and a firewarriors set to make a third strike team. I think that would help boost what I currently have. Another ghostkeel would be awesome, but I might not make that as much of a priority. Maybe another stealth team or a piranha? Anyway, ultimately I'll wait for the codex to drop (hopefully in the next month or two) before getting much else in case they really change something.

One question I had after looking at your list...I noticed you have 10 stealth drones but no ghostkeels. Did you get them all separately somewhere?

User avatar
CDR_Farsight
Shas'Saal
Posts: 270

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#17 » Jan 22 2018 01:17

Honestly, I would hold off on commanders for another month or two unless you just really like the model (they are pretty)and have nothing else you'd rather paint. I think we all know that the nerf bat is on its way for them. They will probably still be good to include in your army in limited numbers, but GW has tried to tackle all forms of spam when they come out with a Codex and FAQs and Commander spam is the most effective and salt producing spam we have.

It seems like you already have enough to field multiple fun lists with (Arka's list seems like a solid one). I would also suggest picking up one more troop just to have the flexibility to get a battalion or brigade if you want. Once our codex drops, one thing I'm sure of is that we will want more CPs and battalions and brigades are where you really get them.
To secure victory, the wise must adapt ~ Puretide

User avatar
BothanJedi
Shas
Posts: 15

Re: New to Tau, need help building army

Post#18 » Jan 22 2018 01:34

CDR_Farsight wrote:Honestly, I would hold off on commanders for another month or two unless you just really like the model (they are pretty)and have nothing else you'd rather paint. I think we all know that the nerf bat is on its way for them. They will probably still be good to include in your army in limited numbers, but GW has tried to tackle all forms of spam when they come out with a Codex and FAQs and Commander spam is the most effective and salt producing spam we have.

It seems like you already have enough to field multiple fun lists with (Arka's list seems like a solid one). I would also suggest picking up one more troop just to have the flexibility to get a battalion or brigade if you want. Once our codex drops, one thing I'm sure of is that we will want more CPs and battalions and brigades are where you really get them.


Very true. I keep telling myself to hold off on buying anything else right now. I'm more so just formulating lists of what I would like eventually. I could maybe some CIB bits ,but i guess that could also change with the impending codex. I'll just work on what I have for now. Hopefully we'll all hear something about the codex within the next month or two.

And yes, Arka provided a very good list for me to start playing with!

Return to “Cadre Building”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests