Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Discuss tactical and strategic development for 40K/Tau.
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Emberkahn
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Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#1 » Aug 02 2017 10:45

TL;DR Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber is monstrous

I played a game recently where I was feeling pretty lazy and had just faced a guard heavy weapons gunline so I took 2x Tiger Sharks in an airwing (with 2 remora drones to make 3 Flyers) in roughly 1000pts.

Kitted them with HBC, and 2x Skyspear missile Racks. (423 pts each).

Didn't have particularly high expectations against full crunch armies but just wanted to relax.

These things do work. Against guard specifically, who apart from hydras have serious trouble shooting them down, coupled with your massed S6+ D2 shooting for heavy weapons teams. The 50" movement means that getting within 12 of things like commissars is super easy. To top it all off, T 8 means only dedicated anti-air lascannons are really going to do any work against them.

I've always had the philosophy that the most effective army will have a single toughness type (i.e. Heavy armour, or massed infantry or hard to hit (but not a combination of those)), with a wide array of offensive capability (i.e. can deal with all those defensive types.

In achieving those outcomes this thing works perfectly. Between normal commanders, Cold-stars, and these, I think Tau have the potential to be super competitive in this edition.

1ofmany
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#2 » Aug 07 2017 04:27

My problem with flyers this edition are the old templates weapons............. Like the flamer..... Auto hit... Don't get near them.


Thanks

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Arka0415
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#3 » Aug 07 2017 06:24

1ofmany wrote:My problem with flyers this edition are the old templates weapons............. Like the flamer..... Auto hit... Don't get near them.


Thanks


True! Most template weapons aren't going to scare something as monstrous as a Tigershark, but Y'vahra flamers and maybe the Heldrake's flamer could take a chunk out of it.

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Emberkahn
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#4 » Aug 07 2017 10:18

1ofmany wrote:My problem with flyers this edition are the old templates weapons............. Like the flamer..... Auto hit... Don't get near them.

Thanks


Very true! That is weird! Worth being aware though that it is still the equivalent of a tougher Leman Russ. Even Hell-Drakes and Yvahra's will have trouble. More importantly, it costs about the same as an yvahra and will absolutely annihilate it in a 1v1.

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Arka0415
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#5 » Aug 07 2017 10:56

Emberkahn wrote:
1ofmany wrote:My problem with flyers this edition are the old templates weapons............. Like the flamer..... Auto hit... Don't get near them.

Thanks


Very true! That is weird! Worth being aware though that it is still the equivalent of a tougher Leman Russ. Even Hell-Drakes and Yvahra's will have trouble. More importantly, it costs about the same as an yvahra and will absolutely annihilate it in a 1v1.


The Y'vahra doesn't stand a chance (the Tigershark can easily fly away and keep shooting) but the Heldrake has a decent shot at bringing down the Tigershark, or at least dealing a big chunk of damage on it. The Heldrake has the speed to keep up with the Tigershark's movement, and between its close-combat attacks, Baleflamer, and bonus against flyers, I'd say it has a chance. That said, it wouldn't be too difficult for a Tigershark to just delete a Heldrake with shooting.

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Panzer
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#6 » Aug 07 2017 11:35

And that's honestly totally fine. A Heldrake should be able to take down fliers decently. It's a damn cyber dragon from hell made out of an already excelent flyer as its base. ;)

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Arka0415
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#7 » Aug 07 2017 11:52

Panzer wrote:And that's honestly totally fine. A Heldrake should be able to take down fliers decently. It's a damn cyber dragon from hell made out of an already excelent flyer as its base. ;)


Definitely! The Heldrake has a fun role in 8th Edition as a flyer counter and fast assault unit, but I don't think it's broken at all- unlike in previous editions :D

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azlanpower
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#8 » Aug 08 2017 08:30

Is the Tigershark for sale from Forgeworld website? I couldn't find and don't know where to purchase this model...any ideas?

Jacket
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#9 » Aug 08 2017 09:43

There is a thread with leaked pics of the new reworked Tigershark model, but FW as yet has to put it back up. If we're going to see it at all this year it should be out the open day coming up this sunday. This is kind of their last real big show for the year.

Allegedly there are rumours floating around that when asked if the Tau would see any new models released (not a re-release like the shark) and they hinted that this year the Tau would see two or more non-super heavy flyers and also not giant suits or something.

I doubt that will happen though. Heck I doubt we'll even see the Tigershark. It's clear GW/FW are in full 8th ed launch mode and are just pumping out space marine stuff. Then on top of that need to make 30k stuff. No time for anything Tau. Even Fires of Cyraxus seems to be delayed due to unforeseen complications with the passing of a design member some months ago and 8th ed launch. If it ever sees the light of day it will be a long ways off I think.

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Emberkahn
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#10 » Aug 09 2017 01:05

Arka0415 wrote:
Emberkahn wrote:
1ofmany wrote:My problem with flyers this edition are the old templates weapons............. Like the flamer..... Auto hit... Don't get near them.

Thanks


Very true! That is weird! Worth being aware though that it is still the equivalent of a tougher Leman Russ. Even Hell-Drakes and Yvahra's will have trouble. More importantly, it costs about the same as an yvahra and will absolutely annihilate it in a 1v1.


The Y'vahra doesn't stand a chance (the Tigershark can easily fly away and keep shooting) but the Heldrake has a decent shot at bringing down the Tigershark, or at least dealing a big chunk of damage on it. The Heldrake has the speed to keep up with the Tigershark's movement, and between its close-combat attacks, Baleflamer, and bonus against flyers, I'd say it has a chance. That said, it wouldn't be too difficult for a Tigershark to just delete a Heldrake with shooting.


On closer inspection I actually think the Helldrake isn't exactly a silver bullet either.

Let's assume that it gets to shoot and charge and has the range to do so.

Baleflamer will do on average 1.56 wounds a turn. Close Combat it will do 1.1 wounds. Next turn the Tigershark can fly out of range with ease.

Importantly, thats 2.26 wounds on average per turn from a 200ish odd model, or if two helldrakes were shooting (same points), a total of 25% of the Tiger-sharks total health.

In return let's consider the burst cannon Tigershark with no support or seeker missiles (double the cost of a helldrake). Shooting everything it will do on average 6.2596 damage a turn.

Considering 2 helldrakes (same price as the tiger shark) would have 24 Wounds, that is 26% of their total cost in damage.

What can we conclude from this: Even when a Tigershark which isn't specced at all for air combat faces off against Helldrakes that are, point for point it is still more effective in a one off matchup.

This doesn't even come close to considering the facts that
1) Tigershark is much less vulnerable to ground fire
2) Tigershark is much more flexible due to movement speed
3) Tigershark is much more effective against ground targets (although I guess Helldrakes can tie stuff up and heal)

TL;DR: Tiger-sharks are great even against dedicated AA

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Arka0415
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#11 » Aug 09 2017 01:36

Emberkahn wrote:On closer inspection I actually think the Helldrake isn't exactly a silver bullet either.

Let's assume that it gets to shoot and charge and has the range to do so.

Baleflamer will do on average 1.56 wounds a turn. Close Combat it will do 1.1 wounds. Next turn the Tigershark can fly out of range with ease.

Importantly, thats 2.26 wounds on average per turn from a 200ish odd model, or if two helldrakes were shooting (same points), a total of 25% of the Tiger-sharks total health.

In return let's consider the burst cannon Tigershark with no support or seeker missiles (double the cost of a helldrake). Shooting everything it will do on average 6.2596 damage a turn.

Considering 2 helldrakes (same price as the tiger shark) would have 24 Wounds, that is 26% of their total cost in damage.


The Heldrake certainly isn't going to rip a Tigershark from the sky, I just said it has a chance. It's cheap (more than 30 points cheaper than in the Index), its flamer attacks auto-hit and its melee attacks hit on 2+. Statistically, it's not going to do a whole lot, but it has the right wargear to really mess up the Tigershark if it gets the hits in.

Silver bullet? No. But I'd say it's a decent anti-flyer alternative. The Tigershark might be a bit more than the Heldrake can chew, but Barracudas and Sunsharks should definitely keep their distance!

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Emberkahn
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Re: Airwings and the Tiger Shark Fighter-Bomber

Post#12 » Aug 13 2017 10:46

Arka0415 wrote:
Emberkahn wrote:On closer inspection I actually think the Helldrake isn't exactly a silver bullet either.

Let's assume that it gets to shoot and charge and has the range to do so.

Baleflamer will do on average 1.56 wounds a turn. Close Combat it will do 1.1 wounds. Next turn the Tigershark can fly out of range with ease.

Importantly, thats 2.26 wounds on average per turn from a 200ish odd model, or if two helldrakes were shooting (same points), a total of 25% of the Tiger-sharks total health.

In return let's consider the burst cannon Tigershark with no support or seeker missiles (double the cost of a helldrake). Shooting everything it will do on average 6.2596 damage a turn.

Considering 2 helldrakes (same price as the tiger shark) would have 24 Wounds, that is 26% of their total cost in damage.


The Heldrake certainly isn't going to rip a Tigershark from the sky, I just said it has a chance. It's cheap (more than 30 points cheaper than in the Index), its flamer attacks auto-hit and its melee attacks hit on 2+. Statistically, it's not going to do a whole lot, but it has the right wargear to really mess up the Tigershark if it gets the hits in.

Silver bullet? No. But I'd say it's a decent anti-flyer alternative. The Tigershark might be a bit more than the Heldrake can chew, but Barracudas and Sunsharks should definitely keep their distance!


Fair.

I think the point I am trying to draw out is that effective AA to me means cost efficient AA. If your Anti Flyer is not gonna earn its keep even shooting the thing it needs to shoot, its not effective AA. The fact that most AA is NOT cost effective against the tiger shark, coupled with the fact that it just straight up pretty much auto-wins vs CC based armies reveals that with a Tiger shark, the worst thing you will come up against (A full AA list) is still a fairly balanced matchup. Given that in tournaments competitive lists won't be full AA Tiger-Shark lists look to be terrifyingly competitive.

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