Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Discuss every aspect of the Shadow War stand-alone game.
Fokke
Shas'La
Posts: 130

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#41 » Apr 17 2017 07:44

Wow, totally didn't notice the recon drone had a move or shoot weapon. I don't have the rules at hand, are fusion guns heavy too? If so that makes the stealth suit totally useless and I played it wrong.

I won both of my games but only because I played the mission and extremely unlucky rolls on my opponents part. I think we would have a hard time in a free for all mission. A drones 12" move saved the day on hit and run having to get across the board quickly.

Things to improve for Tau:

Carbines being sustained fire 1. It shoot grenades and the pulse shots in the main rules, why was it nerfed so badly in SWA?

Stealth suit getting a jump pack. Raptors have one in the chaos list, why don't we? Its one of our signature items.

Burst cannon and Fusion need to be switched to special weapons not heavy. Would make recon drones and stealth suits worth bringing.

Camo- We are frikkin pathfinders, the most camo'd up dudes in the tau army who lay under ghilli cloaks and laser pointed tanks on Taros without the Imps even knowing they were there. Not to mention everyone else uses camo as a no brainer wargear item which further reduces our pathetic range.

Red Dot sights- Needed to increase our abysmal BS. Even better if we can retrofit them on recon drones who need it so badly its stupid.

Good-
Markerlights- ML are super important for our army. Yes our BS is pathetic as it is normally but with everyone in the game needing mostly 5s and 6s to hit with guns, this is one of our only advantages being able to almost always hit on 4s(not counting running and overwatch). Once I get the points, I put this on everything that can now.

Annnnd that's about it.

I think in the future I will be running a specialist sniper with a rail rifle, sgt, a pulse accelerator drone and a grav inhibitor drone and multiple carbine dudes with marker lights. With the revelation that recon drones and their burst cannon are so useless even without the move or shoot thing, I don't see the point after using them, in both games, one of which I brought two of them, I hit a single target once. BS2 sucks bad.

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Rizzle
Kor'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#42 » Apr 17 2017 08:40

The Stealth Team Shas'Ui may not be a strong offensive piece, but it is a powerful role player. The combination of M5, Infiltration, being permanently in cover (and able to Hide) and respectable armour makes it well suited to completing about half of the mission objectives in the book.

As long as they don't get anyone within initiative range of the stealth suit, the cannot see them!

I'd also add Supporting Fire to the list of Tau positives, doubly so with pulse pistols. I feel very strongly that any boost to Tau accuracy should be matched with a nerf to Supporting Fire as it can already shut down assaults with careful positioning.

(But yeah! There are issues! I'll certainly take [b]ARC'Thunder/b]'s suggestion to pass thoughts along to Games Workshop via their community page.)

Fokke
Shas'La
Posts: 130

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#43 » Apr 17 2017 08:58

I played a variety of armies on Saturday, my above was just for Tau. This one is my personal observations for everything I saw.

Orks- Loved playing these guys. Most fun warband I played. Very powerful with low cost, high toughness, high strength, high WS stats. Yeah they have low BS, they also has a sustained fire basic weapon everyone can carry. I shot more dudes with my ork band than I managed to shoot with my tau just because volume of fire. I out shot a mechinicus warband. And then they get into hand to hand. Some notes on things I would change when I build a new band(after the current is completely painted), mostly just more dudes with shootas. The few I had were just awesome. My one dude with a shoota killed more dudes in two games than my tau warband killed in total.

Chaos- I played my alpha legion. I went fluffy and all had mark undivided, 2 bolter dudes, one heavy bolter dude, a sgt with a power fist and pistol, all with camo. These guys were great. Went against orks stationed myself in a corner and took shots of opportunity. Managed to put a wound on a warboss in the first round, but his bolter exploded. Another bolter dude took another guy out, his bolter didn't explode but it went out of action. Heavy bolter just chugged along and popped orks. Ended up in close combat still and lost a guy. This whole ammo thing is lame as hell. Second round was against eldar, I kept the band, added another specialist and gave him the first dudes heavy bolter and gave the old dude a melta since he now had hip shot skill. Also hired a "cultist" alpha legion operative. Heavy bolter once again devastated my opponents. Accounted for 90% of kills leaving only 1 guy left to bottle out. Cant think of anything I would change in my line up. What I played markwise would depend on the legion I played, not so cheesy or WAAC to bring a mix of marks for a warband that wouldn't have them.

General tactics:
-Things I have seen not work. Spreading yourself out is not advisable. We played every scenario in the book. Consistently my opponent spread himself out so I couldn't do a one turn wipe on him. With one exception I managed to keep my own band together and either accomplished the mission as a group or eliminated him one dude at a time. Since there are no turn limits there is no rush. For example, we did rescue just to play it with my orks vs his ad mech. He put the prisoner on top of a building and perched snipers and a few dudes on top of buildings fixated on that location. I put my orks in a mob and rushed across the board along the edge and swarmed the first sniper, then got into position and stormed the next guy, then stormed the next guy. He was never more than once able to bring more than one shooter to bear on my guys. By the time I got to the prisoner, he was down to a lone sniper and the sgt. My guys simply retreated at that point winning the scenario.

With Tau I did it in the hit and run scenario, mostly just to protect my guys and accomplish the mission. He had 4 guys spread around the board to cover all angles.(Ill get into band make up in a bit) So after losing a drone and taking off a guy in my corner, my group stayed together and never allowed him to get a clear shot on anyone. I pinned another scout in the far corner on my side of the board with mass fire. Drone sped across the board ahead of the group to win.

-Don't get fooled into playing gimmicks. By this I mean like scouts and entire band of snipers. Sniper rifles aren't that good. They work well singly. Being able to 50/50 stay hidden when firing is a nice bonus but don't base your band off it. My opponent used snipers with all sniper rifles, camo, red dots, etc. My tau could barely touch them in shooting because we are tau who for some reason gave up shooting. But we can avoid their shots. He had only snipers, it was easy to make a tactic against them since they are obviously only doing one thing, camping and shooting.

-Don't fall for the trap that orks cant shoot, they have far more firepower than one would think even if they have a hard time hitting an aircraft carrier at 20 feet, spray and pray really does work for them.

-Play the mission: Tau suck at almost every aspect of the game. Our movement is average, our BS is below average(rounded down), our guns have too short of range(especially since almost everyone else gets camo cheap), we don't have volume of fire, and we have very little wargear. Our drones suck even worse than the pathfinders with a few exceptions, they have decent armor and toughness and they move really fast. Always include one or two but don't waste points on a recon drone. These guys are your wide receivers. On missions where you have to get something, use the speedy drones to stay out of sight and go get them Grav inhibitors will be good for this, you can almost say that's why they are included.

But no matter which warband you play, play the mission, not the opponent. Don't piecemeal your guys out to get picked off one by one. If your mission is to get across the board, send your group to where your opponent isn't. Recovery? Concentrate fire on targets in the way and do it. Also you can use the mission against your opponent. If he knows you are going after a certain objective odds are they will plan accordingly. So don't go after the objective. Go after his stragglers and strike the straggler with overwhelming firepower. His force will be out of place to stop this strategy and he will have to realign. Keep the initiative.

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1189

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#44 » Apr 17 2017 09:34

Fokke wrote:
Carbines being sustained fire 1. It shoot grenades and the pulse shots in the main rules, why was it nerfed so badly in SWA?

They don't shoot grenades in the main rules though. They've always been missing that for some reason unfortunately.

Fokke wrote:Stealth suit getting a jump pack. Raptors have one in the chaos list, why don't we? Its one of our signature items.

Burst cannon and Fusion need to be switched to special weapons not heavy. Would make recon drones and stealth suits worth bringing.

Stealth Suits never had Jump Packs. Jet Packs is our thing. But yes we'd need either that or moving its weapons to the Special section.
Fokke wrote:Camo- We are frikkin pathfinders, the most camo'd up dudes in the tau army who lay under ghilli cloaks and laser pointed tanks on Taros without the Imps even knowing they were there. Not to mention everyone else uses camo as a no brainer wargear item which further reduces our pathetic range.

Pathfinder never were more stealthy than any other unit except for having Scout though unfortunately. The only Tau units that have some kind of camo thing going are Stealth Suits and Ghostkeel.

Fokke wrote:Red Dot sights- Needed to increase our abysmal BS. Even better if we can retrofit them on recon drones who need it so badly its stupid.

Good-
Markerlights- ML are super important for our army. Yes our BS is pathetic as it is normally but with everyone in the game needing mostly 5s and 6s to hit with guns, this is one of our only advantages being able to almost always hit on 4s(not counting running and overwatch). Once I get the points, I put this on everything that can now.

That's the thing. Most armies have BS4 and can get to BS5 with Red-dot laser sight. So they don't hit on 5s/6s. They hit on 4s/5s or even 3s/4s depending on whether they took the Red-dot laser sights or not. Being in hard cover is rather hard to pull off consinstently so I'll assume soft cover or running as standard scenario.
Oh and that's for every to-hit modifier, not just cover.
Means that most armies hit just as well at targets in soft cover as we'd do with Markerlights and better at targets out in the open without any additional upgrades.

FYI the teams without BS4 are GSC, Tyranids (who are melee focussed anyway) and Orks.

Fokke wrote:I think in the future I will be running a specialist sniper with a rail rifle, sgt, a pulse accelerator drone and a grav inhibitor drone and multiple carbine dudes with marker lights. With the revelation that recon drones and their burst cannon are so useless even without the move or shoot thing, I don't see the point after using them, in both games, one of which I brought two of them, I hit a single target once. BS2 sucks bad.

Rail Rifles, Pulse Accelerator Drones and Markerlights are a must have right now just to bring us to an almost equal level to other lists. Those are supposed to be advantages but right now the only thing they do is 'almost' making us as good as the others.

------

Rizzle wrote:The Stealth Team Shas'Ui may not be a strong offensive piece, but it is a powerful role player. The combination of M5, Infiltration, being permanently in cover (and able to Hide) and respectable armour makes it well suited to completing about half of the mission objectives in the book.

I agree, the Stealth Suit definitely has value depending on the mission and can really ruin a Tyranid teams day even in a kill mission due S8 with d6 wounds.

Rizzle wrote:I'd also add Supporting Fire to the list of Tau positives, doubly so with pulse pistols. I feel very strongly that any boost to Tau accuracy should be matched with a nerf to Supporting Fire as it can already shut down assaults with careful positioning.

Keep in mind that we have to stay in 3" range to the one who gets charge to use Supporting Fire which means we are super vulnerable to frag grenates and similar. Also if we aren't really careful we happen to be really quick within 2" range to eachother where we have to start to test for panic once one of them goes down. I don't think we need additional nerfs to justify any buffs. ^^


Rizzle wrote:(But yeah! There are issues! I'll certainly take [b]ARC'Thunder/b]'s suggestion to pass thoughts along to Games Workshop via their community page.)

Already did that. They replied and said they'll forward it to the studio team.

Fokke
Shas'La
Posts: 130

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#45 » Apr 17 2017 09:46

Fluffwise pathfinders have been noted for their use of physical camouflage. I remember somewhere it was mentioned on Taros they hide in the hills under ghilli cloaks and laser pointed passing tanks for out of LOS seeker missiles and the Imps eventually had to send up someone to worm them out before they jumped on their Tetras and escaped. However you look at it, they are snipers and laser pointers, their job would require them to use camo and there is no justification for not having the option.

Carbines in the main rules cause pinning due to shooting photon grenades along with the pulse when they fire. Might have changed in newer fluff.

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1189

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#46 » Apr 17 2017 09:54

Fokke wrote:Fluffwise pathfinders have been noted for their use of physical camouflage. I remember somewhere it was mentioned on Taros they hide in the hills under ghilli cloaks and laser pointed passing tanks for out of LOS seeker missiles and the Imps eventually had to send up someone to worm them out before they jumped on their Tetras and escaped. However you look at it, they are snipers and laser pointers, their job would require them to use camo and there is no justification for not having the option.

Carbines in the main rules cause pinning due to shooting photon grenades along with the pulse when they fire. Might have changed in newer fluff.

Yes fluff wise. But they never had any kind of stealth rules outside of formations so far. Trust me, I'd love having them with Stealth USR but unfortunately that's not the case. It also would make more sense for them to use Pulse Rifles instead of Pulse Carbines considering their role on the battlefield but that's not the case either.
They are simply in a weird spot rules-wise.

It's nowhere said that the pinning comes from the photon grenades. Sure it's plausible but then again that's not how the fluff describes them. It says they shoot the grenades first and then follow up with pulse dakka while the enemy is disorientated and helpless...that's not how it works in the game obviously.

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ARC'Thunder
Shas'Vre
Posts: 846

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#47 » Apr 17 2017 10:58

Fokke wrote:Carbines in the main rules cause pinning due to shooting photon grenades along with the pulse when they fire. Might have changed in newer fluff.

Panzer wrote:It's nowhere said that the pinning comes from the photon grenades. Sure it's plausible but then again that's not how the fluff describes them. It says they shoot the grenades first and then follow up with pulse dakka while the enemy is disorientated and helpless...that's not how it works in the game obviously.

Some deductive reasoning marks out the pinning as being a result of the underslung flashbangs, being that there is no other marked difference between the rifle and the carbine to warrant it's addition. And, prior to 7th edition, the photon grenade had no thrown profile meaning pinning was, again, a means to represent the use of the grenade at range alongside pulse rounds.

Also:
Codex: Tau Empire 4th ed. pg 29 wrote:Pulse carbine
The pulse carbine sacrifices range for portability and the chance to mount an underslung photon grenade launcher. Any unit suffering at least one wound from pulse carbine fire must test for pinning.
Codex: Tau Empire 6th ed. pg 66 wrote:Pulse Weapons
...A pulse rifle or carbine is standard issue for Fire Warriors; the rifle has the longer range while the carbine utilizes an underslung photon grenade launcher to get more shots.
While none of these quotes explicitly say why a gun has the pinning special rule, you could also say that many weapons in the game lack a precise narrative-to-rule breakdown, and just trust the player to make these connections.

To be more on topic, since everything in Shadow Wars pins, adding in representation of the photon grenade via the pinning rule is not really possible. I think Sustained Fire 1 is our best solution to this problem as not only does it represent the increased rate of fire for the carbine (much like the ork shoota), but because it increases our chances to hit—regardless of wounding—it means we are more likely to pin. It should also be noted that this is a difficult situation for balance purposes too; because while we're focused on our inability to hit, pin, or close in we forget that our carbine shames even the mighty bolter in it's ability to kill and pierce armor.

I've heard some comparisons of Shadow Wars to Necromunda, and I think one issue may not be our lack of access to the miscellaneous wargear, but rather it's proliferation amongst the other factions. I get that, as these are military forces and not simply gangers, that they're more well equipped (I think this is why they changed to 2d6 for ammo instead of 1d6), but it's very evident that the rules framework for the game was not designed to support such ludicrously high ballistic skills. Not to mention that, in a campaign, the low cost of all these pieces of wargear mean that a player could outfit his whole team with these modifiers after one match. It's my understanding that in Necromunda, such pieces of wargear are fairly rare and hard to come by.

With this in mind, I think the solution is to decrease access to gear like camo cloaks, red dots, etc. by either increasing the points costs of these items, and/or somehow making them limited in lists. Some veterans of Necromunda will have a better feel for this than I do, but I think multiplying the points values of these items by 5 or 10 might help out considerably. At that point players will decrease the number of them found in base 1,000 point lists, and they won't be able to flood an entire team with them during the rearming/recruiting between matches. A player would then have to choose meaningfully between recruiting a trooper or gearing up his team.

Another issue, as Panzer pointed out, is the fact that the large majority of factions available to play are all BS4. Again, I don't think Necromunda had many gangers that were BS4 right out of the gate. It takes time to develop a ganger to get those BS increases via skills or advancement. Because the standard is BS4: the easy access to red dots, photo-visors, and some characteristic increases all compound into a larger problem than any one piece of wargear. I don't think the ruleset can really support such consistently accurate teams.

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Peregrim
Shas'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#48 » Apr 17 2017 11:28

I would be wary of giving our carbines Sustained Fire. I'm worried that multiple chances to hit combined with our high basic weapon strength would overcompensate for our low accuracy and detract from the recon drone's niche.

Our pulse carbines are most similar to the Skitarii's radium carbines in WH40K; they're both Assault weapons with multiple shots and 18" range. In SW:A, the radium carbine's range was increased to 24" and it was given +1 to hit at short range. I think the same changes should be made to the pulse carbine.

I would like to be able to use our carbine's photon grenade launchers to attempt to pin enemies. Perhaps, instead of shooting, our pathfinders could launch a photon grenade using a small blast template and enemies under the template are automatically pinned?

Fokke
Shas'La
Posts: 130

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#49 » Apr 17 2017 12:02

Recon drones do not have a niche. Right now they are effectively unusable being shoot or move combined with BS2 and their extremely high price tag. My biggest observation even before I found out the shoot or move thing was the other two drones would have served me better playing the scenarios. Finding out about M or S was just the nail in the coffin.

I think sustain 1 would still function better although I like the suggested range increase and +1 at short. The ad mech thing however doesn't include that they are BS4 to our BS3 as well. With my orks using a shoota killed so many people not from actually hurting them but from hitting them and pinning them knocking them over the edge. I think in the 6 games I played sat, 75% of my non-melee kills were from guys falling over the edge after simply hitting them. We played on a lot of 9" tall terrain and I remembered to bring safety harnesses for my sniper/gunners unlike him.

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1189

Re: Shadow War: Armageddon tactics and warband make up

Post#50 » Apr 17 2017 12:09

I too wouldn't give Carbines Sustained fire. That would be a bit too much once they get into range. Tau would either do nothing while out of range or wreck faces once in range. Nobody wants to play against such a team i think.
However we could easily give them the option to additionally throw a small blast grenade that does nothing than pinning. Blasts are really easy to hit with in SW:A and having the chance to pin he enemy once with the photon grenade blast and once with the actual shooting would be a neat buff without being too much.

However while that would kinda fix our low BS problem to some degree, it wouldn't fix the two problems of being outranged and rather squishy.

I agree that Misc gear should be less available or gets its cost multiplied by 5 (camo gear 25p, photo-visor 75p, red-dot laser sight and telescopic sight 100p iirc).

EDIT: just read that Peregrim had the same idea regarding the Carbine grenade launcher. :D
Last edited by Panzer on Apr 17 2017 02:58, edited 1 time in total.

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