Friday, October 28, 2011

Tau Speculations and Wishlist

The latest rumors are that Tau Empire will receive an update in Q1-2 2012, so as a Tau player I'm eager to see what might be in the pipeline...

I'm less interested in what rules updates they might have (although I do have some wishes)--but I'm mainly interested in seeing what new models and troop types there will be.  Here are my thoughts:

  • Broadside plastic sprue.  Perhaps this will be incorporated into the current Crisis Suit set, so that you buy one suit, and you can make whatever you want out of it.
  • The Sky-Ray needs an update.  They just don't have firepower that can compete with the Hammerhead.  See my bullet on Seeker Missiles.
  • An indirect fire weapon, like artillery?  Well, one of the "themes" of Tau is the fact that they lack artillery. (which is odd...)  The weapons that fulfill this role are seeker missiles and smart missiles, which each have their uses, but neither of them are ordnance or even blast weapons.  Which leads us to...  
  • Seeker missiles!  Currently they have a lot going for them--unlimited range, no LOS required from the launching vehicle (but you do need a markerlight for targetting, which I think is good, not bad).  But their hitting power is limited.  S8 AP3...yay, you just killed one MEQ.  What I'd like to see is some heavier anti-personnel power.  I say give it the option to fire it either as per the old rules or as a submunition like the Hammerhead's railgun: S6 AP4 Large Blast.  That would fix so much in my opinion...
  • More special characters?  We already have ethereal special characters (Aun'shi, Aun'va), and two commanders (Shadowsun, Farsight).  What else could we get?  My guess is:
    • Battlesuit Shas'vre - either a Crisis Suit or a Stealth Suit special character
    • A Kroot shaper?  Maybe a Vespid, or another alien race?
    • A drone...  Tau are presented as the up and coming race, with advanced technology that is continuously improving.  Why not allow them to have very good AI that borders on sentience.  You could make a drone that is unique and experimental that pushes this envelope.
  • A new alien race?  Although I'm personally not a huge fan of either the Kroot or the Vespid, another alien unit to round out the Tau Empire's forces might be in the works.
  • Finecast--Vespid will probably be moving to finecast, as would most of the characters like Shadowsun and the Ethereals.  The Sniper Drone team is already finecast, but I'd like to see the Pathfinders become a plastic kit, not Finecast. 
  • A new plastic kit--I'm guessing that they might make a plastic Barracuda, with options to make a bomber or some other kind of variant.
The Tau fulfill the manga aesthetic in the 40k universe, which is hugely popular.  I think that if GW makes the right design choices, the tau will be flying off the shelves.


Karitas said...

In these modern overpowered times, I'd expect an expensive HQ or character who can make battlesuits scoring.

actually, that might be really cool :)

Darkwing said...

With 6th Edition coming along, I wonder if the "troops scoring" concept will go away...

Cawshis Clay said...

I'd like to see the Tau get further refined on their Mobility+Firepower army structure. Right now, in the advent of 5th edition mobility, I think they're slightly hampered by their failure to perform in the CC phase, since they are so good in the move/shoot phase.

If they keep that focus, then I think they need a HQs that compliments the shooting or moving phases. The current IC mix seem so at odds. Shadowsun is close range while the others add in CC skills or rally skills that rarely come in to play.

I want to see abilities like the IG, where commanders can improve shooting or force move troops or better get reserves where they need to be. If the Tau are the "modern" armry eq in the 40k universe, they really need more "modern" tools!

Skyray needs to be competitive and I love the idea of ordnance missiles. FWs should be cheaper or have a better BS. I'd also love to see some more alien options as that opens up lots of conversion possibilities!