1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Battles and discussion of tactics from the earliest days of our Academy.
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Xanadu
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1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#1 » Dec 09 2010 01:15

Hello ATT,

I haven't graced these fine forum walls with many posts regaling tales of my Cadre's battles recently (due to Eldar commitments) but I have not abandoned the Greater Good. I play regularly at the University Gaming society, and my last few games haven't been anything spectacular (vs Ork Hordes, IG Gunlines etc) mostly ending in draws, hard-earned victories or stupid losses on my part. The most recent game I have played with my Tau was something I hadn't anticipated but something that I needed to open my eyes.

I have spent a good amount of time via PM with a few newer members of the forum giving out army list advice and tactica or being brutally honest on some of the interesting but totally unrealistic army lists that people have offered up to me, so I am perfectly aware of people being 'greener' than myself. On my forays into the local GW when I have the time, I see people playing with standard Battleforce armies against one another, with people regularly loosing to the more 'advantageous' starter boxes, hence decrying them as over powered with the more impressionable dropping their Eldar and Imperial Guard and instead going for the Space Marines and Space Wolves of this world.

Normally I ignore these 'petty' games with the knowledge that people will eventually give up the hobby or develop into an imago from a lowly chrysalis. This is normally the case, with many players like myself guiding these beginners through the path of a game and help to spell out the Things To Do and the Things You Really Shouldn't Do, eventually developing them by feeding them

Last night's game was one of those games in which I wasn't sure of how to react, or even to play against such a player. He is a guy I have seen around the Gamesoc, playing effective games vs other marine players and solidly beating Daemon and Necron players alike, and last week after playing a very unsatisfactory game vs some Daemonhunters I offered to play him with my Tau and was shocked to see puzzlement on the guys face, but he agreed.

Little did I know that this player would have absolutely no idea of how to play my Tau or how even to play the game properly.

I took the following list:

Shas’el:
Missile Pod, Plasma Rifle, Multi-tracker, Hard-wired Drone Controller, Shield Drone

XV8 ‘Crisis’ Shas’vre La’rua:
2 Battlesuits armed with Missile Pods, Plasma Rifles, supported by Multi-Trackers

XV8 ‘Crisis’ La’rua:
2 Battlesuits armed with Missile Pods, Plasma Rifles, supported by Multi-Trackers

XV8 ‘Crisis’ La’rua:
2 Battlesuits armed with Missile Pods, Plasma Rifles, supported by Multi-Trackers

XV8 ‘Crisis’ La’rua:
2 Battlesuits armed with Missile Pods, Plasma Rifles, supported by Multi-Trackers

Fire Warrior La’rua:
6 Shas’la equipped with Pulse Rifles

Fire Warrior La’rua:
6 Shas’la equipped with Pulse Rifles

Kroot Carnivore Kindred:
Composed of 10 Kroot Carnivores

Pathfinder La’rua:
7 Pathfinder Shas’la
Mounted in Devilfish Troop Transport:
Armed with Smart Missile Systems, Multi-Tracker and Disruption Pod

Piranha Light Skimmer:
Armed with Fusion Blaster and equipped with a Disruption Pod

Piranha Light Skimmer:
Armed with Fusion Blaster and equipped with a Disruption Pod

XV88 ‘Broadside’ Battlesuit La’rua:
2 Battlesuits all equipped with Targeting Array Support System, One Team Leader with Hard-wired Target Lock

XV88 ‘Broadside’ Battlesuit La’rua:
2 Battlesuits all equipped with Targeting Array Support Systems and Twin Linked Plasma Rifles, One Team Leader with Hard-wired Target Lock

He Took something along these lines:

Pedro Kantor with Honour Guard
Rhino

5 Sternguard

10 Tactical Marines with a Flamer and Missile Launcher

10 Tactical Marines with a Flamer and Missile Launcher

5 Sniper Scouts

5 Assault Marines

5 Bikers, Sgt with PW and 3 Meltaguns

Whirlwind

Vindicator

We rolled DoW deployment and the Seize Ground Objectives - this shortly became totally irrelevant however.

The game started without a hitch, with my kroot being deployed along the central line to push his deployment as far back as possible. This is where the ordinary game went out the window.

Never before has my opponent played so poorly against me in a way that implied he had no clue whatsoever as to what he was doing, or even as to what he was playing in the first place. He was initially very interested in the game, asking me plenty of questions about the different pieces of war gear that my suits had the weaponry that they were carting around. This changed abruptly.

He did the obvious rookie error of running for my kroot, running his tactical squads up to the centre of the board backed by the sternguard and what followed was a tabling of such epic proportions I won't even bother to massage my ego by acting as the raconteur, my grand losses were the kroot and one very unlucky crisis suit who failed a cover save to be destroyed by a krak missile, whilst he had nothing left.

After a turn of shooting crippled his transport capabilities and his AT weaponry, he became petulant and angry (not far akin to the new players in the Games Workshop) - not something I was ready for, being incredibly upset his master plan was crumbling with only one salvo being unleashed.

I am normally a very understanding player, helping those in need and offering suggestions as to target priority but to those that rebut any attempt that I try to make to help them, I am disinterested. He stoutly refused to acknowledge any of my aid, doing the exact opposite.

I have a few questions:

How was I to help him without trying too obviously?
Having been in that situation once, did I act in the correct manner by being gracious?

I would appreciate your input on this matter as I have been mulling this matter over for a while now.

X

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O'Shatta Hens
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#2 » Dec 09 2010 02:41

Ouch. This poor guy had no chance.
Your list was a finely honed killing machine. While his list had some good elements, it wasn't really focussed. It seems like he just threw all the models he had into one army without making any real choices.

As far as being a poor loser, there's not much you can do about this. It doesn't sound like it was your fault. Make a mental note to not play this guy again, or to bring a softer list if you absolutely have to play him again. I don't know what else could help.

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Inq NicolePyykkonen
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#3 » Dec 09 2010 04:00

Xanadu wrote:How was I to help him without trying too obviously?
Having been in that situation once, did I act in the correct manner by being gracious?

I would appreciate your input on this matter as I have been mulling this matter over for a while now.

Firstly, you've done nothing wrong at all. In such situations where I'm facing a newer player or a child (by child I refer to say, the jr high and high school kids that ACT like children with the behavior I would expect from my 12 year old with ADHD and ODD, as opposed to those high schoolers who are acting like adults) I try to remember what it's like when I was new, or when I was first learning to play chess with my father when I was a child myself (ironic how old sometimes I realize I must be at 30 when I don't "feel" old at all).

First time I played chess with him he pulled Scholar's Check on me, ending the game in 4 turns. I then learned how to counter that, and we played another game right after.

The point being, is to actually teach someone is hard. They will lose. You should not pull your punches and nerf your list into stupid-dom. I can think of a couple solutions that I would employ in such situations.

First, instead of chosing units that are deliberately ineffective, instead you can use some units that others consider slightly sub-par and you don't get to play with often. Perhaps it's time to dust off the Sky Ray, or Vespid, or Scout Suits. Swap out a unit of Crisis Suits for more Fire Warriors. You can still have effective units while slightly toning down the "I'm going to rip out your throat" of your list.

Second, without adjusting the list at all, you can adjust how you're playing to deliberately ease up the pressure and aggressiveness. What I try to do with my own son with similar games and Warhammer is intentionally make a mistake periodically and see if he catches it. In chess I will occasionally leave a piece open and unprotected. Perhaps I'll "accidently" leave a unit slightly within charge range, or not quite move a vehicle far enough out of potential line of sight from a unit, leaving it where he could move to see it on his next turn. Doing this once or twice a game allows him to feel like he's getting better, and also teaches him to learn to spot mistakes and capitalize on them. It also makes me a better player by learning how to adapt a plan or cope with the loss of a particular unit.

These are some of the "passive" ways to help teach someone. Active methods can't really be used unless they want the help. By all means ask "Would you like a suggestion?" but be prepared for them to decline. Should the newer person say "Yes please!" then by all means give them advice from a neutral standpoint. Point out two or three alternatives, give them pros and cons of each one, then let them make a decision. If you know Johnny over there is looking for some games cause he just started last week, perhaps finding a vet who uses an army similar to Johnny can advise Johnny through a game with you playing on your B-game level as opposed to your A-game level. This way you can get the best of both worlds, someone to give neutral standpoint advice, and yourself to "accidently" forget to quite move out of line of sight with a JSJ move or something periodically as well.

You'll find that over time you don't have to make as many intentional mistakes for the new guy to start seeing things or learning to look a turn or two ahead. Gradually he will surprise you by catching something you honestly didn't intend to do. He'll start getting draws more and more often, sometimes winning a game. You can then slowly start to work your way back up to your A-game, only this time he can follow you. In the end, it's a win for everyone.

Should the other player decide to be a well... lame guy, ranting because he got a sound beating, there's not much you can do. If they're being reasonable and going "Wow, so that game totally stunk" you can offer a "Would you like a few suggestions or a couple things I spotted that didn't work so well for you?" and see if they take you up on it. Ultimately though, the only thing you can plan on doing is not rubbing their face in the dirt, shaking their hand and saying "Thank you for the game" and hoping they'll get better.

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Samurai_Aly
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#4 » Dec 09 2010 04:16

Unfortunately it seems as though the player in question was just a bit of a sore loser. As O'Shatta Hens already mentioned, his list was very unfocused, but this is possibly because he hadn't played Tau before, and didn't know what to expect.
As for your questions:

1. I'm not entirely sure you can. It doesn't help to try and force advice onto people who don't want it as in my experience it sometimes comes across as being a bit condescending. Obviously his tactic of "charge and shoot till everything is dead" didn't quite work and hopefully he'll have learned from his mistakes and plan any future games accordingly.

2. Absolutely. It's bad to be a sore loser, but worse almost to be "that guy" who lords it over his opponent when he wins.

You were right to try and offer some advice, but it just sounds like your opponent was just a guy who was hard to deal with anyway. You can always offer to play him again, if he refuses then it's his loss in the end.

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Xanadu
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#5 » Dec 10 2010 07:48

Hey People,

Thanks for your opinions on this matter. I have a few things to say with respect to others opinions.

Firstly:

O'Shatta Hens wrote:Ouch. This poor guy had no chance.
Your list was a finely honed killing machine. While his list had some good elements, it wasn't really focussed. It seems like he just threw all the models he had into one army without making any real choices.


That is what it seemed to me when we began to play, none of the units bar the vindicator had a significant role to play, but his deployment set the mood. I am no changing my list again for a while, I mean my list has gone through so many incarnations recently - I have settled on this one as it is the most killy while significantly more survivable than other options. I was beaten so many times before I settled on this, with guidance from 3++ and YTTH proving to be the real deciding factor. Ideally, I'd like more kroot in my list, but as it stands I need to finish everything else beforehand. My list is not going to change, as the gaming society has multiple A grade/ high B grade players and due to transportation issues, this 1500 fits nicely into one box :D.

@M'yen Shi

Thanks for your support on this, it was only so long ago that my Tau were regularly beaten by the more solid lists around (twin lash/oblit Chaos, lb IG etc) so I can appreciate the learning process.

I will try next time (against a lower ability player) some of the passive methods you suggested - in the game we played I steamrollered up the field after his major threats were gone with my Crisis suits jumping straight out the castle I'd built myself.

He was just a sore looser - the thing that I realised that irked me the most was the refusal to shake my hand after I had beaten him. I ALWAYS shake someones hand regardless of the game outcome, something that marks me out as a good sport at the Society (more than my happiness to play the same opponent continuously to try and beat a list (It took me three attempts vs the Elysian aircav to even draw a game).

@Samurai_Aly

He seemed to be a capable player vs other races as I have mentioned (plays mainly defensively), but I am concerned if a player is completely unable to deal with some army builds (This list hinges on a small number of shooting platforms in power armour, hardly a problem if you know how to shut them down). My Tau have difficulty with hordes due to the sheer numbers of little guys running towards my lines, but everything else Runs smoothly, but I haven't seen anyone with such problems before.

Are Tau really that rare, that we confuse people with our odd units and abilities?

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Peregrine
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#6 » Dec 10 2010 12:48

Xanadu wrote:How was I to help him without trying too obviously?


"I'm sorry that you have the maturity of a small child, feel free to ask for another game when you've calmed down and realized that losing a game of 40k isn't the end of the world."*

Then pack your stuff up and don't play him again until he learns how to act like an adult. There's no point in wasting time trying to teach game skills to someone who isn't worth playing in the first place.


*Insert profanity as you like.

Having been in that situation once, did I act in the correct manner by being gracious?



Pretty much. Some people just can't be helped, and the best thing you can do is refuse to reward their poor behavior by not playing against them. Hopefully the rest of the group will follow your example, and your opponent will either grow up or find another hobby. Either way, you win.

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Inq NicolePyykkonen
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#7 » Dec 10 2010 01:26

Xanadu wrote:Are Tau really that rare, that we confuse people with our odd units and abilities?

Tau are thought to be one of the 'weaker' armies, I think because people assume that the Codex is old, and that there's actual skill involved in getting the most out of them, like Eldar. Lots of people try it out, can't win a game and decide Tau suck.

It's also not as common as say, Space Marines, Chaos, Imperial Guard, Orks, Tyrannids. These seem to be the most common armies (to me), with everything else being more rare than those. Perception is a tricky thing, if someone gets something in their head it can sometimes be a pill getting it out of there.

That and some people have a knee-jerk reaction to anything they consider "mecha" or "anime" and 40k :)

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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#8 » Dec 12 2010 10:34

I never ever for any reason go easy on an opponent. I see it as insulting. Purposefully taking it easy on the person your playing is another way of saying "this guy can't handle a loss". All I would do is point out his flaws if he is willing to listen and if not than that's on him.

Imagine playing a hard fought game where you just barely edged out a victory. Exhausted but inflated with pride in your performance you begin to drive home. As you drive you go over the game in your head, you examine some of your opponents "odd" moves that are uncharacteristically sloppy. You had brushed it off in the heat of the moment but now your curiosity has kicked in, then you realize that your opponent had let you win, now all that hard work is for seemingly nothing and your victory feels hollow, you crash the car and die.

Ok so maybe not that last part but I hope you see what I'm saying.

While I can’t speak for the context of Warhammer, i am breaking into the tournament setting of Magic the Gathering, after not playing the game for seven years. Needless to say I have been getting my butt kicked, but the only real way to get better is to lose games and understand why I lost, if my opponents took it easy on me than I may just develop strategies that aren’t reliable in an actual game.
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Ell'ran
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#9 » Dec 13 2010 03:30

Sounds like you had quite the experience Xanadu. In my experience though, Myen Shi is right. The Tau are very underestimated by typical players, and highly overestimated by beginners. I had a game against a Space Wolf newbie (so new that this kid was building his scouts as I was writing my army list *facepalm*). In short, he ran away from my 12 pulse rifles, but when observers and myself told him he was underestimating Tau he decided to go all in, and promptly got chewed to pieces in that critical <12" range. It wasn't a satisfying victory but it sure was funny as hell. :D I would have felt bad when the kid was getting pissed off...but he was annoying, crowded my personal space and kept touching my dice when I was rolling, almost knocked my hammerhead on the floor, and a slew of other things as well. Do I blame him, not entirely. Do I blame his 2 older brothers that also play 40k, kinda. If the kid (12 years old-ish) doesn't know proper etiquette (such as stay on your own table edge!) then he shouldn't be playing in the store.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that we all eventually face those opponents that make us so frustrated that we want to go punch kittens or something. I'm glad that you were able to walk away graciously from this and are looking for improvement on the matter. I wish you better luck next time you find yourself in a similar situation, or even against the same opponent.

Cheers,
Ell'ran

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gr1m_dan
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#10 » Jan 26 2011 10:03

Brilliant post Xanadu!

I had this happen to me in a small 750 point tournament at Warhammer World run by the local gaming group. I was totally new to the group and was only one of two players to bring a Tau army, out of say 20 or so guys. I came 2nd. I beat the reigning champions Space Marine army by a mile and this was a gentleman of at least 45 years of age who was getting a little...irked by my victory (I'm 25). He started blaming the lack of terrain on the table (which would of probably helped ME more) and numerous other things. After a while he calmed down and was quite congratulating but be warned, even older people who one would assume would be gracious in defeat, are not!

Most of the gaming group where very derisory about me playing "girly run away" Tau until the results came in...They actually require tactics and not just "RUSH FORWARD STOMP STOMP".
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Vior'la Mont'yon
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#11 » Apr 11 2011 04:05

I've had a bit of experience teaching new players. Back in my home town I was responsible for getting at least half our regulars into the game. More recently (as in the month before I deployed... I miss playing :::( ) I met a young'un no older who had just started. I must say he impressed me and even though he was still learning the ropes he was a pleasure to play against. He had chosen Space Marines, not because they are "uber cool" but because they were forgiving. He picked them for the soul purpose of learning the game without jumping ahead of himself. After having played him I have to vouch that all the above methods can work very well. Sometimes you need to steamroll someone and narrate it. Others it is better to highlight the threats your own units provide and let him make his own choices with information he may not have thought of before (ie: my hammerhead could crush your vindicater if you don't kill it, but my pathfinders will make sure it kills your tank and they're easier to kill. He can attack and possibly hurt my disruption pod railhead, or kill my source of markerlights pop smoke and hope I miss.)

On a lighter note I'm proud to say he picked up his first Tau shortly before I deployed.
This kid also proves that a twelve year old can be more mature than a twenty year old.
A battle suit for every occasion!

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Huru MorDae
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#12 » Apr 11 2011 05:13

Offer to play him again but don't change your list. The advantage is you can try some new outlandish tactics, and he learns by ether fixing his mistakes or face losing the same way as last time.

Since this was not tournamanet play. Ask if he would like some insight into what you are going to do. Its obvious his game is not up to yours, this creates more of a challange for you if you let him know your plan. Think of it as playing a player who is good enough to know what you have in mind if it makes you feel bad to push him.

Also don't even try to bother with reducating people about being a sore loser. You have nothing to prove because you already beat him in the first place. Telling him to grow up only makes it look like you need to get the last word in. Give him a puzzled look then ask him how he would play your army. Im sure the reaction you will get is something along the lines of "Uh...".

Remeber he has to want to learn. This means he has to come to you if you wish to teach him. You cant do this by forcing him. But you can give him all the opertunity in the world to both respect you, and learn from you if you simply don't let his actions affect yours. Remember he is not you after all.

@Peregrine
-But that would be egging him on. For all you know the guy could be under a lot of stress amd sees 40k as a way out and maybe just wants one thing to go right in his life, or perhapes hes a complete yeah... Why make a remark that you know will get a rebuttle?
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J.J.
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#13 » Apr 11 2011 04:23

I'm sorry that you have the maturity of a small child, feel free to ask for another game when you've calmed down and realized that losing a game of 40k isn't the end of the world.

I mostly lurk here but boy do I always enjoy your posts Peregrine!

A lot of great advice here. One thing that also helps - if a player accuses you of winning because your list or codex is overpowered, offer to trade lists and play another game. (I know this doesn't directly address the questions in the OP since it doesn't sound like that claim was made, but it can be a very useful teaching tool.) Often the players making those claims are inexperienced or immature (or both), and nothing teaches you how to play better like playing an unfamiliar army. Sure you may end of playing a sub-par list using an army you're not that familiar with, but hey its great practice for you too. I've had very enjoyable games this way.

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Peregrine
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#14 » Apr 11 2011 10:39

Huru MorDae wrote:@Peregrine
-But that would be egging him on. For all you know the guy could be under a lot of stress amd sees 40k as a way out and maybe just wants one thing to go right in his life, or perhapes hes a complete yeah... Why make a remark that you know will get a rebuttle?


Because sometimes people just need to be called on their bad behavior. When you just silently tolerate that kind of immaturity, you're reinforcing the idea that it is acceptable and encouraging them to continue to do it in the future. And since the wargaming community has enough problems as it is, I really don't see why anyone should think this is a good thing.

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Xanadu
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#15 » Apr 12 2011 02:53

Wow, I resume lurking and this comes back to bite me... I knew it was a thought provoking topic.

One thing I must say is that the Stigma faced as a tau player at my gaming group reached such an intolerable level that I have been forced to temporarily abandon them in favour of other significantly 'easier to deal with' armies. I almost exclusively play with my Eldar at the moment, but people are getting sick of them too. I cant help winning, haha.

People at my club are still being such sore losers against one of the weakest codexes (claiming the codex is overpowered and the like) that I doubt I'll return to my blue skins in a while. Sorry ATT...

This isn't the place for Eldar analysis, but I'll be sure to throw some out when I start my new blog.

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Huru MorDae
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#16 » Apr 12 2011 03:24

packing your Tau because other players dislike them is not a win :/
If anything you should play your Tau more often, and with greater pride. At one poin in time I grew to hate the Tau I played because everyone was always labeling me the underdog from the get go just because I play Tau. Not based on my skill level or anything.
Then I discovered I reveled in thier pain and it made me play Tau more and more because their crys of cheating and thier inability to adapt amke me gigle on the inside. Ethier that or because my Mentor was a Dark Eldar player I get much satisfaction in the slow torture of my enemy.

In all due aspects you should play your tau because of their "rascist" attiude against xeno's. After all Tau may come into style like bell bottom jeans and you'd be the first on track :D
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Hlali
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#17 » Apr 15 2011 06:18

I have a question about the list you took.

Is the "XV8 ‘Crisis’ Shas’vre La’rua" your Shas'el's bodyguard? If not, how did you get 4 Crisis teams? o.O If they are, please ignore the question ^_^

Anyhow, I think most of us have encountered bad sports. I don't think you should retire your Tau, however. That you can win so consistently with them is really amazing, and speaks loudly both for your own skills and the opponents you face.

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lostinnm
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Re: 1500 vs Crimson Fists [With Reflection]

Post#18 » Apr 15 2011 07:06

Huru MorDae wrote:Then I discovered I reveled in thier pain and it made me play Tau more and more because their crys of cheating and thier inability to adapt amke me gigle on the inside. Ethier that or because my Mentor was a Dark Eldar player I get much satisfaction in the slow torture of my enemy.

This is part of the reason I kept playing my Tau. Most people refused to adapt their strategy to fighting the Tau and hence would lose. Even bringing the same weak but flexible list for months on end most wouldn't adapt to it.
Then I'd pick up my Space Wolves and have an opposing Tau player on the ropes by turn 2 with the victory sealed by turn 3-4. It's not your problem that your opponent refuses to open his eyes to the glaring weaknesses of the codex and exploit them. People lose to the Tau because they are either ignorant or blind to how they work not necessarily because they are cheesy.

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