Arka0415 wrote:If you ask around on reddit, in r/40klore, I bet people could tell you more about Tau starships and 40k starships in general over there, they're absurdly knowledgeable.
Thanks for the tip Akra. I'd like to also add a bit of headcanon on Tau aircraft aesthetics in this post as well as thanking you though. So here is a short analysis on the visual aesthetics of Tau aircraft and spacecraft
I see Tau ships (as depicted in Battlefleet Gothic and on the tabletop with the Flyers) as falling into one of two categories. First are the smaller, less capable vessels. These tend to have long, sweeping lines with lots of curves. I see this as any craft that is capable of atmospheric flight. The Orca is the exception (as it is a VTOL craft which means it doesn't need as much aerodynamic lift as other Tau Flyers).
On the other hand, the lar'shi (hero) class battleships have a very 'hammerhead' (the animal, not the tank) like design, and look comparatively more layered and blocky. I assume this is becuase a) they exist in a environment where aerodynamics don't matter, and b) becuase they need more armour to protect against Macro Cannons and other such weaponary. I also like to think that sections of the armour conceal CIWS system. On Modern capital ships, Close In Weapons Systems such as the Phalanx and Vulcan turrets use radar-controlled gunfire to take out incoming missiles and to take down incoming aircraft. As the nature of war is different nowdays, modern fleets are being phased out of the combat setting, as there are no large naval battles anymore. This is the same reason that a) battleships no longer prowl the seas with massive gun batteries and b) the reason why so few keels are layed down nowdays for carriers: they are quickly becoming obsolete.
However, in the 40k universe, space combat requires useage of massive cruisers, battleships and battlecurisers. The Tau don't use such outrageously intricate and ancient ships like those of the imperium, nor such fragile and outdated vessels such as those of the Eldar and Dark Eldar. Their ships have more sophistication that the 'flying junkyard guns' of the Orks and are more maneuverable than the the extremely ancient and powerful ships of the Necrons. (Just BTW's I'm talking fluff, not BFG. I actually haven't played in that (mainly because the 'geniuses' at GW decided to remove one of the best specialist games there was)). The main advantage the Tau have is that their ships are lightweight, fast and can deal huge amounts of damage via railguns, missiles and ion weaponary. Their orbitale (like this one) can provide support, albiet at the cost of movement, and their mantas and barracudas can engage the comparitively stone-age imperial vessels.
So apart from that last paragraph, that was the aesthetics of the Tau. See ya later ATT!!