How I would do the Tau + Allies

Discuss the Tau fleet. For the Greater Good!
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Kadaeux
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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Kadaeux » 14 May 2016, 06:49

RedDevilCG wrote:1) Pg. 208, 4th para: Mantas actually are capable of FTL flight by this time period, and are the smallest spacecraft to have etherdrive (only good for short interstellar trips due to the size). I don't have the EPIC rules in front of me (and as I recall there were two versions by the end and neither of them made fully official), but I'm more certain than ever that it did have an additional save in EPIC due to the etherdrive in one of the versions. Sadly, Specialist Games went under before anything was made official, and I've been wrong before about the exact rules due to time warping my memory! :x


I don't recall Tau ever getting anything in Epic. Maybe you're thinking Aeronautica Imperialis?

2) Pg. 194, 1st para: Barracudas are faster than Marauder bombers, but slower than Thunderbolt/Lightning fighters (we already knew this), but it also confirms that the Barracudas had better electronic systems and were more maneuverable. The 2nd paragraph goes on to confirm that Air Caste pilots have better three-dimensional awareness and marginally better acceleration and gravitational tolerances than human pilots. (It was here and not in the Tau codex after all!) Thank god it doesn't mention anything silly like hallow bones here....


There's just one problem there.

Thunderbolts, Lightnings and Marauder's aren't the Imperial Navy's space superiority craft :p

In space the Imperium utilises the Fury Interceptor and Starhawk bombers. ;)

(The former has 10 forward facing lascannons, a twin linked lascannon turret and a dozen void capable missiles. The latter has 4 turrets and plasma missiles.)

It seems that this basically means their advantages canceled out, and it works out that way in BFG when the counters meet (I wasn't referring to the speed earlier when I was saying they were the same, but that 1 counter of fighters generally cancels another counter). Sorry for the confusion on that last point :oops:


Yeah, in that case it is generally the case, though the rules did imply that it was less total destruction and more a case of "some shooty, survivors RTB for repair and rearm.

In the end, it's mostly just interesting fluff as in this game fighters just remain on combat air patrol for the most part and I doubt anything special will happen with Tau bombers except maybe being more resilient in manner similar to Eldar torpedoes.


Yeah, with how the turrets work the best they can really do is make it like the Eldar Bombers and Torpedoes. It could simply end up being a squadron with 1 Manta and 5 Barracudas.

Now what I really want to know is how they implement Gravatic Launchers. Homing torpedoes? Hopefully they don't end up as much a mess as the current Pulsars are :?


The way i'd implement it is you target an enemy ship with them when firing. They automatically attempt to home in on that ship, but if they miss you're SoL.

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angelshard
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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby angelshard » 14 May 2016, 08:06

I think the tau admiral ship should increase leadership, but if it dies every ship has a chance to warp out, representing the presence of an ethereal on the admiral ship (generally I'd like it if the admiral ship mattered in all missions instead of just data and assassination).

Also I'm not sold on the merc idea, I'm afraid they'd either be go to or never used as they wouldn't be customizable or gain levels and therefore cant scale with admiral level.

Even escorts gets 3 upgrades.

Otherwise it seems like a fine fleet you've suggested.

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby RedDevilCG » 14 May 2016, 18:27

Kadaeux wrote:There's just one problem there.

Thunderbolts, Lightnings and Marauder's aren't the Imperial Navy's space superiority craft :p

In space the Imperium utilises the Fury Interceptor and Starhawk bombers. ;)
Ah yes, very true. Yet the hierarchy still remains the same in BFG with Barracudas being faster than the Imperial bombers and slower than the Imperial fighters when released from the drag of the atmosphere, so in this case the names don't matter :mrgreen:

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Rolepgeek » 14 May 2016, 21:17

As a note, the hint for the Tau was that "We've intercepted alarming signals from the Damocles sector! For the greater good!"

Which seems to me like the time period that it would be meant to take place in would be the Damocles Crusade. In which case, the Kor'Or"Vesh would have been in development, with the Kor'Vattra making up the majority of Tau fleets. And to be honest, if we can have both, I'll be glad for it. Kor'Vattra vessels tend to be a bit bigger and tougher while still being cheaper than Kor'Or'Vesh, even if they're also slower and weaker in boarding and firepower.

I'm guessing for torpedoes though, what they'll do is that for every torpedo an equivalent Imperial ship would have, Tau ships will fire three/six homing missiles that each deal around 12/6 damage. It balances out the strain of additional entities the game has to keep track of and display, as well as visual aesthetics, with the Tau lore of networked missiles. Theoretically, they could have each of the three appear like a cluster of three missiles, but it would introduce problems and visual effects when destroyed and everything that it would probably just be better to have three or so. The reduced total damage mostly compensates for the fact that they're homing (as well as meaning that Tau have yet more reasons to hold back), though if they took off armor-piercing and left it at 15 damage per missile that could accomplish something similar. (Actually, thinking about it, the fact that Tau have to identify the targets before they can fire probably compensates for the increased accuracy at that point, so 15 damage per missile is probably fine) Probably like 90° forward launch bays in that they'll need enemy ships to be identified, and could either have a random chance to detonate after certain distances, or limited turning rate so that if they're dodged they get exposed to turret fire again, but otherwise unlimited distance like normal torpedoes.

Manta Heavy Bombers would probably be fairly simple changes. When launched, it's a squadron of 1 Manta and two/three(playtesting would have to see which is more appropriate) Barracuda Fighters. Mantas get 30% base chance to dodge hits, can take three hits before they actually go down, and if only two Barracudas are launched alongside them, would probably be able to shoot down ordnance like a Fighter as well. Deal 30/45 damage a hit, with 7.5/11.25 critical chances and attack 3/2 times. They hit at full strength until they go down, which is the primary reason testing would have to be done to see if three Barracudas makes them too hard to fend off for balance.

Prow Deflectors are easy to implement, just have them act like an additional Prow Weapon or die out when the Generator gets hit. If they wanted to, they could do something similar to the Eldar, where the engines influence the shields, since Tau use their gravity sheaths as their primary means of travel in the void, as well as shields. If Engines get hit, it could cut the shield regen rate in half, but only gives half as large of a speed penalty. Same would go for Generators. Give 75 armor in the front while active, of course.

As for accuracy, my guess/idea would be that it's the same as Imperial accuracy, however, Messengers and Custodians get Advanced Tracking Systems or Advanced Targeting Relays, whatever they want to call them for this version. Any allied ships with Tau Accuracy (As opposed to Imperial or Auxiliary) within X units of the ship with the system, including the ship itself, get a 20% bonus to accuracy. This also applies to turrets, though maybe they would cut the bonus in half. While this boosts accuracy at all distances, not just past 6k, it means there's still a purpose for the Tau in the 'accuracy penalties reduced beyond 6k' upgrade, and is more useful at long distances. The radius of effect is up for debate; I suspect they'd just standardize it at around 3k, as it's easier and doesn't make too much of a difference. Messenger will already be quite vulnerable in this game as compared to TT, so giving it a bit more leeway to hang back isn't too bad, and Custodian should be fine with 3k range. We'll see, of course; they could also just give it as an activated skill or only work when Lock On is activated, as well. Ah, and 10,000 Detection range for ships with the systems as well. They could also have it so the bonus given to allies is lost if the Deck is destroyed, or have it be like a Weapon System, or have it completely tied to the Deck and the bonus be lost in it's entirety if the Deck is destroyed. *shrug*

It would be nice to see Auxiliary vessels, but I don't know how well they'd fit into it. They could be done with their own unique set of skills or favours, or cost additional renown to start with and act as pre-favoured vessels...it would certainly be interesting to see how the Demiurg ships would be handled, though. I suspect many of the upgrades will be flavored after auxiliary technology.

I think I saw someone mention that Tau wouldn't be able to get lost in the Warp; while technically true, the drives that power their Warp dives can malfunction, and have limited power supply, so they could as easily be stranded in realspace for long enough to fill the same role as the Warp.

On a similar note, they'll probably be Loyal, as while Tau aren't as independent as Imperial officers, they're more willing to retreat as part of combat doctrine, and may find the decision to fall back to be the more intelligent one, even if that doesn't agree with their Kor'O. Hopefully mutinies would be more about the on-board (low-ranking) Ethereal(who's rather inexperienced with actually commanding the vessel...) taking charge, or the crew telling their captain that he needs to step down if he is unwilling to give for the Greater Good. Commissar equivalent would obviously be Ethereal. Execute becomes Override, perhaps?

Though on the subject of crew members, I want to say what I figure the rest would be even if it's unnecessary. Navigator might remain Navigator though with a picture of either a Nicassar, navigational computer, or Technician(not sure which Caste it'd be). Techpriest becomes Earth Caste, Ratings become Fire Warrior Teams, Servitors become Drones, and Gunnery Master and Squadron Sergeant, of course, remain the same.

And Favours...Tindalos really has four routes they can go here, I think. They can by Sept with some Castes thrown in, or Auxiliaries with some Castes thrown in, just Castes, or all three. Castes are basically certain to play into it, it's just too much a part of the Tau not to tie in. I'm rather hoping they go for all three, with Demiurg/Earth Caste/Bork'an or Dal'yth, Kroot/Fire Caste/Vior'la or Sa'cea, Nicassar/Air Caste/Vash'ya or Ke'lshan, and possibly Human(would far rather they just be called human than Gue'la, if we won't be using the Tau name for the Kroot or other auxiliaries), Vespid, or Nagi for the last, as those are the best known other auxiliaries, though they each have issues with being tied in as a favour here. Could also just be Ethereal and a focus back on Tau. Probably no Water Caste, as they're involved anyway with their being alien species involved, and also just don't have much to do with the fighting of the war itself, even if they're involved in all the support and diplomatic deals associated with the war.

I figure the actual bonuses might be something like this.

Fire Caste/Kroot Favour:
Kroot Hunting Packs: +10 Troop Rating, +1 to assault actions when Boarding.
? Crisis Assault Teams: Allows use of Manta Dropships, which launch two Assault Actions if they reach an enemy vessel.
? (For either ships without hangar bays or if assault boat-equivalents are found to be unfitting even with the melee favour, I really have no idea what else the active skill would be)

Earth Caste/Demiurg Favour:
Field Testing: +1 Upgrade Slots to the Ship/+1 Skill Slot to the Ship.
? Nanotech Repairs: The ship will regain 2(3?) Hull Points per second for 45 seconds. All fires on board the ship are extinguished. One critically damaged component is repaired. (One weapon system is repaired?) Cooldown: 180 seconds.
? Automated Repairs/Expert Technicians: The cooldown of Emergency Repairs is reduced by 25%.

Air Caste/Nicassar:
? Psychic Detection: The designated enemy ship is identified. Cooldown: 120 seconds
? Multidirectional Gravitic Sheath: The ship boosts in the designated direction without needing to change it's facing. Cooldown: 60/120 seconds. Speed Factor: 60/80?
? Veteran Crew(?): Every crew member gains one free crew point.
? Superior Gravitic Sheath: The Consumption Gauge refill rate is increased by 25%

Ethereal Caste:
The Greater Good/The Aun Bids Us Fight: This ship is immune to insubordination.
? Inspirational: Reduces the cooldowns of all nearby ships OR boosts fire rate and reduces cooldowns of the ship for a short time. (Probably not) Cooldown: 180 seconds
? You Will Come To See Our Ways (?): Forces an insubordination check on the targeted ship. On a failure, the ship automatically mutinies, but does not attempt to flee. Cooldown: 180 seconds Range: 6,000 OR equivalent of Slaanesh Favour active skill

No idea what they'd do for Humans or Vespid. They could also have a stealth and/or damage boosting skill, called Kauyon or Mont'ka (although I will take care to remind those of us who may have forgotten that Kauyon and Mont'ka are Fire Caste strategies based off of their own history as hunters. The Kor do not have the same background as the Shas. While they may certainly be influenced in their strategic thinking by the most militaristic caste, they will have their own doctrines, although they may be similar in some aspects.

Hopefully I'm not repeating too much of the OP, by this point. Half-trying to do a compilation of what's been discussed, so...
Weapons would probably fit somewhere between Chaos and Eldar. Either multiple turrets with 180° turning ranges, a few with 270°, High RoF, and few attacks per volley per turret, or several larger turrets with same ranges, still decent RoF, and higher attacks per volley. Range can be converted as usual, and Macro DPS should be somewhere around Chaos-Imperial, though, especially as Tau rely on their cheap escorts. Speaking of which, with Gravitic Hooks, Orca/Warden escorts could benefit from the upgrades and passive favour bonuses of their parent ships, if that was how Tindalos wanted to represent it. They could just ignore the Gravitic Hooks entirely, which I'm hoping they don't do, as the escorts seemed like a big part of Tau strategy in the TT. It was where most of their Lance power came from, short of Demiurg allies, from what I could tell, for instance.

Shields and Hull Points can be converted directly from what's in the TT same as they have everything else, though I believe it would be better if they used the tougher variant of the Merchant, and of course the Defender and Castellan would be Heavy Escorts. Kor'Vattra vessels obviously have lower troop values, and reduced number of Boarding Actions, and no lightning strikes for any Tau ships, of course.

I can think of a few Upgrade names off the top of my head, such as Demiurg Ion Cannons for the range boost, Ramming Wedge for a boost to ramming damage and an upgrade to Prow Deflectors to allow them to work against Ramming/Asteroids/Explosions as well, though the ramming boost is lost too if the Deflectors go.

Playstyle would probably have two main types; Skirmish/Artillery and Alpha-Assisted/Mid-Range Brawl (it's not really a brawl at that point, I know, but Tau will be dishing out enough Macro fire at that level that it's rather similar). Focus on either the excellent Ordnance and bomb the Warp out of the enemy, or focus on the excellent long-range Macro fire where you can let your Prow Deflectors soak up damage as you wear out the enemy, all of whom currently lack a good amount of forward-facing long-range firepower. Eldar crumble under either one if they can't get behind you and cause you to crumple with your weaker, Assault-poor ships only as tough as they are. Chaos will lose the Ordnance fight if they don't get in close and use their better brawl capability (without taking enough damage to lose it...), though Lance fleets against long-range macro Tau will be...interesting, and probably depend on who brought more ordnance. Orks just need to get up close, and will probably smash through any long-range macro that doesn't flank them really carefully. Imperials are the closest to Tau, with enough Ordnance to not get utterly smashed by it like Orks, matching speeds to prevent truly effective kiting, and heavier prow armor to blunt the macro fire as they close, although the Tau won't be bothered by the torpedo volleys. For Ordnance fleets, it'll be the usual, though macro fleets will probably come down to whether the Tau can prevent the Imperials from breaking their line, and keep the Brawl at Prow's length, preferably out of AP macro/Lightning Strike range.

Sidenote: All Tau ships have gravitic sheaths if they're larger than a Manta. They just can't be focused as Deflector wedges in smaller vessels, and smaller vessels can't mount the rather oversized FTL drives the Tau have to use.

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Auzor » 15 May 2016, 20:08

Rolepgeek wrote:
Manta Heavy Bombers would probably be fairly simple changes. When launched, it's a squadron of 1 Manta and two/three(playtesting would have to see which is more appropriate) Barracuda Fighters. Mantas get 30% base chance to dodge hits, can take three hits before they actually go down, and if only two Barracudas are launched alongside them, would probably be able to shoot down ordnance like a Fighter as well. Deal 30/45 damage a hit, with 7.5/11.25 critical chances and attack 3/2 times. They hit at full strength until they go down, which is the primary reason testing would have to be done to see if three Barracudas makes them too hard to fend off for balance.


As for accuracy, my guess/idea would be that it's the same as Imperial accuracy, however, Messengers and Custodians get Advanced Tracking Systems or Advanced Targeting Relays, whatever they want to call them for this version. Any allied ships with Tau Accuracy (As opposed to Imperial or Auxiliary) within X units of the ship with the system, including the ship itself, get a 20% bonus to accuracy. This also applies to turrets, though maybe they would cut the bonus in half. While this boosts accuracy at all distances, not just past 6k, it means there's still a purpose for the Tau in the 'accuracy penalties reduced beyond 6k' upgrade, and is more useful at long distances. The radius of effect is up for debate; I suspect they'd just standardize it at around 3k, as it's easier and doesn't make too much of a difference. Messenger will already be quite vulnerable in this game as compared to TT, so giving it a bit more leeway to hang back isn't too bad, and Custodian should be fine with 3k range. We'll see, of course; they could also just give it as an activated skill or only work when Lock On is activated, as well. Ah, and 10,000 Detection range for ships with the systems as well. They could also have it so the bonus given to allies is lost if the Deck is destroyed, or have it be like a Weapon System, or have it completely tied to the Deck and the bonus be lost in it's entirety if the Deck is destroyed. *shrug*



On a similar note, they'll probably be Loyal, as while Tau aren't as independent as Imperial officers, they're more willing to retreat as part of combat doctrine, and may find the decision to fall back to be the more intelligent one, even if that doesn't agree with their Kor'O. Hopefully mutinies would be more about the on-board (low-ranking) Ethereal(who's rather inexperienced with actually commanding the vessel...) taking charge, or the crew telling their captain that he needs to step down if he is unwilling to give for the Greater Good. Commissar equivalent would obviously be Ethereal. Execute becomes Override, perhaps?


I figure the actual bonuses might be something like this.

Fire Caste/Kroot Favour:
Kroot Hunting Packs: +10 Troop Rating, +1 to assault actions when Boarding.
? Crisis Assault Teams: Allows use of Manta Dropships, which launch two Assault Actions if they reach an enemy vessel.
? (For either ships without hangar bays or if assault boat-equivalents are found to be unfitting even with the melee favour, I really have no idea what else the active skill would be)

Earth Caste/Demiurg Favour:
Field Testing: +1 Upgrade Slots to the Ship/+1 Skill Slot to the Ship.
? Nanotech Repairs: The ship will regain 2(3?) Hull Points per second for 45 seconds. All fires on board the ship are extinguished. One critically damaged component is repaired. (One weapon system is repaired?) Cooldown: 180 seconds.
? Automated Repairs/Expert Technicians: The cooldown of Emergency Repairs is reduced by 25%.

Air Caste/Nicassar:
? Psychic Detection: The designated enemy ship is identified. Cooldown: 120 seconds
? Multidirectional Gravitic Sheath: The ship boosts in the designated direction without needing to change it's facing. Cooldown: 60/120 seconds. Speed Factor: 60/80?
? Veteran Crew(?): Every crew member gains one free crew point.
? Superior Gravitic Sheath: The Consumption Gauge refill rate is increased by 25%

Ethereal Caste:
The Greater Good/The Aun Bids Us Fight: This ship is immune to insubordination.
? Inspirational: Reduces the cooldowns of all nearby ships OR boosts fire rate and reduces cooldowns of the ship for a short time. (Probably not) Cooldown: 180 seconds
? You Will Come To See Our Ways (?): Forces an insubordination check on the targeted ship. On a failure, the ship automatically mutinies, but does not attempt to flee. Cooldown: 180 seconds Range: 6,000 OR equivalent of Slaanesh Favour active skill

No idea what they'd do for Humans or Vespid. They could also have a stealth and/or damage boosting skill, called Kauyon or Mont'ka (although I will take care to remind those of us who may have forgotten that Kauyon and Mont'ka are Fire Caste strategies based off of their own history as hunters. The Kor do not have the same background as the Shas. While they may certainly be influenced in their strategic thinking by the most militaristic caste, they will have their own doctrines, although they may be similar in some aspects.



Manta's with dodge & taking three hits before going down: auwch. With nearly all the Tau ships having launch bays, auwch.
It is currently pretty common for a ship to take down 1 or 2 bombers, but taking down 3 bombers is pretty rare.
If we start from a cruiser with 12 turrets,
each turret has 35% 'to hit' chance vs fighters/bombers.
Then, Manta's get 30% dodge baseline, and an extra 30% from crew skills "squadron leader" or whatever Tau will call it.
Chance of 1 turret damaging a manta: 1 x 0.35 x 0.4=0.14
On average, this means 1.68 hits on the manta.
What is the likelihood of 12 turrets scoring *at least* 3 hits on a single manta?
This gets.. complicated.
The chance of getting zero hits: 0.86^12=0.1637
The chance of getting 1 hit: 12 x 0.14 x 0.86^11=0.3197
The chance of getting 2 hits: (Combination: 2 out of 12) x (0.14^2)x (0.86 ^10)=0.2863
[2 out of 12= 12!/(2! x (10 !))= 66. ]
So the odds are: 76.97% total chance that 12 turrets fail to bring down a manta bomber, flying on it's own (no escorting baraccuda fighters.
Note that at the moment, only eldar has "dodge" bombers, in limited supplies (except the voidstalker for some reason...), and in the above, it is still, *very* likely an eldar squad would lose some members.
Add 3 barracuda fighters, and.. forget about shooting down a manta with turrets.
The bottom line is that "bomber with 3 HP" is a massive advantage over "3 bombers with 1 HP". Small ships, like escorts and light cruisers are essentially helpless; the odds of scoring 3 hits with 6 or 9 turrets is negligible.
Counter proposal: 2 2-HP manta's with "dodge", Maaaybe, with 2 barracuda's without dodge. Any hits to a manta are assigned to a "wounded" manta first. Compared to an Eldar squad, there is still 6 "HP" total; but 2 (the fighters) don't benefit from dodge. Even still, the 2 HP is such an advantage that I feel the 2 manta's should not deal equal damage to 3 bombers.
So, Chaos bombers deal 30 damage each, 3 to a squad. Manta's would then, IMO be 35-40 each.
Say, each manta deals 2 attacks, 18 damage/attack. For 36 damage/manta.
Or, the manta's get zero fighter cover, 2 2HP manta's/squad, and then they deal 45 damage each.
Or, bonus option: 2 2HP manta's, 2 barracudas, nobody gets dodge; 45 damage/manta.
But certainly not dodge with 3 HP.


Edit: I deleted another part of your post; the +20% accuracy at all ranges.
As a constant bonus, way overpowered. You're giving *lockon* without using an order or the downside of revealing yourself. Seriously, at range, +20% accuracy is double dps. Tau were not really a long ranged fleet in terms of lances or macro fire.. (afaik)
I think it can be an ability, with a cooldown etc. Say, the messenger buffs *this ship* (clicky), and it lasts 30 seconds and has a 90 second cooldown. Or, an AoE ability, buffing the next salvo of each ship in range within 20 seconds. (if the Tau get Chaos-style low-damage, high RoF weapons, also a duration on the AoE bubble-buff).

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Rolepgeek » 15 May 2016, 21:38

You make a good point, and Manta bombers in TT were resilient against enemy strike craft, rather than turrets, after all. However, I think dropping the damage on the Manta would be rather unhelpful, as it means that total damage potential, especially against low-turret ships is reduced compared to other factions, while Tau are very much meant to be, at least in part, an Ordnance faction, and should really do more damage with their bombers than any other faction, in practice. More productive, maybe, and still remaining true to tabletop, might be giving Mantas two hits, or dropping their Dodge ability.

Dropping dodge brings the following(and while I am unsure about balancing specifically for full crew, it's rather necessary...): 1*0.35x*0.7=0.245
Chance of 0 Hits: 0.755^12=0.0343; 1 Hit: 12*0.245*0.755^11=0.13358; 2 Hits: 66*(0.245^2)*(0.755^10) = 0.23842

Which is a ~40% chance of a lone bomber making it through. Which isn't that great if we're wanting to weaken them significantly.

If we instead gave the Manta two hits, as well as removing it's dodge, it's only a ~16.5% chance of the bomber making it through intact. Add in three fighters, and it seems perfectly reasonable to have the Manta hit twice for 45 damage each time. Chaos should not, in my opinion, have better bomber than Tau. Chaos get assault boats, in large quantities, at that. Tau do not, by default, and I have no idea as to whether giving them assault boat-equivalents is a good idea, balance, playstyle, or fluffwise.

The biggest issue is that for this, the number of hits the squad gets total, is the largest factor against high-turret ships, as they can obliterate enough squad members that the drop from 6 total hits to 5 is a big difference. If only two fighters, it's an even larger difference, especially as ships will often have fighter support, intervening ships, and other methods that bring down the total numbers. The hits against individual member of the squadron are primarily important in medium-turret ships, while low turret ships are rather doomed against a typical bomber wave in any case.

I suppose if we wanted to go for lower-damage, tough mantas, it would essentially be the Tau's focus on somewhat reliable damage.

As for the Targeting System, the thing is, it was a constant ability in Tabletop. I thought of making it an ability, or only active during Lock On, or something, but it doesn't give a bonus to criticals, and while it's powerful, they were actually rather powerful at range. They did not take penalties for firing at long range when they had Tracking systems. Advanced Targeting Matrix also gives double DPS at that range, as a current corollary.

I would prefer if Tau were not one-trick Ordnance ponies, and the accuracy bonus seemed more or less fitting without being purely long range(though I admit perhaps it should be). Making it a temporary thing makes some sense, if the gameplay was intended to be as a skirmish fleet, using Lock on, Targeting Systems, and Ordnance to deal big burst damage close prow first before running away while you recharge, but Tau aren't fast enough to accomplish the actual running away. Making it a radius-effect Advanced Targeting Matrix seems rather...boring/cheap, besides making the actual upgrade itself a lot less effective for Tau. I suppose one way to do it would be to reduce accuracy penalties by 25% at all ranges, which would basically mean they'd have Eldar Accuracy when it was around. But just the equivalent of a second Lock-On that only gives the accuracy boost, for a shorter time? Especially with how easy escorts are to kill? It seems somewhat...underwhelming.

They were, in fact, a mid-to-long-range fleet, with every single non-escort ship having 45cm range on their railguns. Several had 45cm ion cannons as well, and the Castellan escort had 45cm railguns on top of missile launchers, albeit being their most expensive escort. They did not have very much lance firepower, however, and in all honesty, their macro fire was lacking as well, if they didn't have their targeting systems, and the prow-armor of Chaos and Imperium, both of which are better brawlers than they, meant they relied extensively on their ordnance and escorts to flank. I would, however, rather they didn't make Chaos carrier fleets completely obsolete (Chaos has a better stealth and kite game, at the least...).

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Kadaeux » 15 May 2016, 22:47

Rolepgeek wrote:They were, in fact, a mid-to-long-range fleet, with every single non-escort ship having 45cm range on their railguns. Several had 45cm ion cannons as well, and the Castellan escort had 45cm railguns on top of missile launchers, albeit being their most expensive escort. They did not have very much lance firepower, however, and in all honesty, their macro fire was lacking as well, if they didn't have their targeting systems, and the prow-armor of Chaos and Imperium, both of which are better brawlers than they, meant they relied extensively on their ordnance and escorts to flank. I would, however, rather they didn't make Chaos carrier fleets completely obsolete (Chaos has a better stealth and kite game, at the least...).


Ah no, they were a mid-to-short ranged fleet. On TT 45cm is mid-range. 60cm is long, 30cm is short, 15cm is point blank (so to speak, only the Orks and Tyranids had weapons that short ranged, and everyone else got a left-column shift for accuracy at 15cm).

But yes, Ordnance was the Tau strength, they had to do a lot of damage on closing, or they'd lose out to everyone elses more powerful broadsides or worse.

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Rolepgeek » 18 May 2016, 05:50

Thought of a better way to represent the increased turret strength when the Advanced Targeting System is nearby. Increase the turret range of any ship within range to 2,000, rather than 1250. Resembles Supporting Fire a bit too, fits in with Tau philosophy.

Also, if Advanced Targeting System reduced range penalties past 6k by 50%, and this stacked with the upgrade version (so that it reduced range penalties past 6k by either 75% or 100%), then I think it might work.

Auzor
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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Auzor » 19 May 2016, 21:54

Rolepgeek wrote:Thought of a better way to represent the increased turret strength when the Advanced Targeting System is nearby. Increase the turret range of any ship within range to 2,000, rather than 1250. Resembles Supporting Fire a bit too, fits in with Tau philosophy.

Also, if Advanced Targeting System reduced range penalties past 6k by 50%, and this stacked with the upgrade version (so that it reduced range penalties past 6k by either 75% or 100%), then I think it might work.


I have already posted about increasing the turret range as an option for an upgrade; numbers subject to tweaking of course.

Regarding the Manta: well, if they get 2 2HP manta's, and 2 barracuda's.. the squadron "hit" count is.. 6.
Still an advantage over Chaos, as the bombers have 4 HP's instead of 3; score 2 hits vs a chaos squad, and on average you kill 1 bomber, 1 fighter.
Do it vs Tau and.. on average, kill 1 fighter, damage a bomber.

I could also see the Tau manta's getting 2 HP, and say.. 10, or 15% "dodge" for resilience, instead of the huge 30%.

Along with the other poster, I disagree about the Tau being a "long range" fleet, ordnance excluded.
The Explorer battleship has 8 (-> 4) launch bays, ok-good, and.. 6 macro dps, with 9k range. "meh"
Then: 3 hooks for bringing cheap escorts.. definitely not "long range".

The "merchant" also has a max of 6 dps macro with 9k range.. which along with 2 optional separate escorts, is also the only armament. This ship also has standard, 400 HP.. so an Eldar light cruiser, but without holofields.

The default hero "main" cruiser, has 4 macro dps with 9k range.

Compare the ranged firepower to Chaos:
yay torpedoes & launch bays;
Oh dear, weak macro firepower, mosl concentrate able in the frontal arc, and not a single LANCE with a range beyond 6k.

We compare the "Hero" to the Chaos devastation class cruiser: (10 pts in TT difference)
Chaos faster.
Chaos twice the launch bays.
Chaos lances twice the range.
Chaos macro 6k range (vs 9k Tau), but 6 vs 4 dps..
Hero: Torpedoes, able to shoot both lances left-right forward too, out to 6k range. These can be traded for 9k range macro, okay.
The "messenger" for tracking systems is a 50 point escort, with a pitifull weapons system of it's own. For that cost, a battlecruiser becomes an option..


Without ordnance, at long range, I think I can give the advantage to Chaos...

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Re: How I would do the Tau + Allies

Postby Rolepgeek » 19 May 2016, 23:12

Auzor, compare the Protector instead. Secondly, I was suggesting a single Manta per bomber squadron. That fits with the lore better, in addition to being more balnced, based on the avg. damage for a given number of hits from turrets/fighters. Though speaking of, I believe allowing Mantas to act as Fighters(giving total of effectively four escort fighters) as well when on route to their target would be a good idea, as it fits in with Mantas in the tabletop primarily being extra effective against fighters, and allows Tau to deal with Fighter screens slightly more effectively.

Tau are not a short range fleet(as Imperium and Chaos alike destroy them at that range), and while they are reliant on their ordnance, I would very much rather have more options for gameplay in this game with Tau than 'spam ordnance and hope they don't close too quickly', especially as defensive fighters would ruin their damage capability at range, given how dependent it would be on torpedoes/missiles at present with a more or less straight conversion. Combine this with how much Tau fleets on tabletop were reliant on cheap escorts and spammed cruisers (the Merchant, for example, needs some significant changes to be viable or sensible as a light cruiser in this game, starting with the speed, and they would essentially all need to be the 6-hill point variation equivalent), and Tau will likely be significantly upgunned. Several other ships have been upgunned or had their range improved similarly.

And again, Tau would not be a long-range lance fleet. Lances are not their thing. Macro fire which was effective at longer ranges (see: Custodian winning out against a Retribution due to Tracking system and 6+ prow armor) was their thing, besides ordnance. Messengers applied to multiple ships, as Tau ships did not fight alone (they could not, they were too crappy individually), many had prow deflectors boosting their armor against macro fire from their chosen direction of engagement, and could put Tracking systems on a crapton of things. They were not the long-range lance fleet that Chaos was. They were in between Imperial Navy and Chaos, and where the Imperial Navy is a mid-range fleet, Nova Cannon alpha excluded, and Chaos was a long-range fleet, Tau were between there, as evidenced by the fact that they have Prow Deflectors, which are sorta like the Imperium, but not on everything, and they could be destroyed for 5+ all around, like Chaos. Except on the Explorer cuz it was basically just a cheap carrier(compare the cost of an Explorer to the cost of a Despoiler or Emperor, for example), and the Merchant because it was supposed to be a reconfigured transport ship.

Tau did rely on their ordnance on the tabletop, whether it was torpedoes or Mantas. I would rather there be more variety than that for when I play Tau. They were still mid to long ranged, in part because of said ordnance. Since every fleet thus far has had two primary builds you can go for, and I can see Space Marines having much the same(Thunderhawk spam vs Bombardment Cannon ram), Tau's second build could easily be long-range macro, and I think it should, as we have had no fleets thus far with such a build.

On another note, the Explorer will either be an exceedingly cheap (and ineffective...) Battleship or a drastically oversized Battlecruiser if directly ported, as while it was Battleship class, it was Battlecruiser cost(less than a Mars!). Hero and Protector, at the moment, would only be Cruiser equivalents, so if the Explorer had it's speed increased (battlecruiser slower than battleship would be ridiculous), it's hull points decreased, and was perhaps upgunned a bit, then we could see it plus the Bastion being Tau Battlecruisers. The Merchant would need to have a major speed boost (to, you know, 150 or 188 instead of 112), would probably need to have 600 Hp as it could be given 6 HP in TT, and maybe boost the range on the ion cannons(only if they do that with all to standardize at 9k, which would be nice but by no means certain), and then it could be a decent light cruiser. I don't think Grav Hooks will be implemented, or if they are, it won't be anywhere near as important as on TT, given how much harder it is to manage large groups of ships effectively. At least, I hope that escort spam won't end up being a practical necessity. Giving them prow deflectors as well would be nice but not necessary, while Emissaries can fill the role of light ordnance at Light Cruiser level. Faster(?), less HP, and launch bays/torpedoes.

Hopefully, it'll end up being that we're reliant on ordnance against Orks and Space Marines thanks to better prow/all around armor, can use our railguns to good effect against Chaos and Eldar (maybe with some assistance from torps/Mantas, preferably not needing both), and can use either and have it be more or less a fair fight against Imperials (both of us have good prow armor, but they're better in a broadside unless we can keep our prow facing them(assuming they adjust AP Macro to be -25 rather than =25)), which'll probably be a fair bit difficult. Dhows are Macro Escort, Wardens are Lance Escort (unlikely for them to implement both Orca and Warden), Defenders are Torp Escort, Castellans could hopefully be something of a mixed escort, with better railguns than the defender but fewer torps, as they're faster and more maneuverable. Or something. Castellans are schizophrenic.


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