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Choosing and Using your Tau Special Characters

Submitted By: Date: September 21, 2005, 09:08:38 PM Views: 2648
Summary: <p class="body">OK, so they turn up pretty often for one-off legendary people don't they? Fact is, many commonly asked Tau-related questions on internet boards include 'Which Special Character is best?' and 'Should I really take O'Shovah in this army?' and so on. Basically, this guide intends to help you decide which of the Tau Special Characters you like the look of buying, and how to get the most out of them in a game.<br /><br /> Some of you may notice than the Forgeworld character Shas'o R'myr has not been mentioned in this Tactica - this is because at the time of writing the only available information on his rules was either outdated or just speculation, so you might have to make up your own minds about that one.<br /><br />

Below you'll find a short section on each of the Tau Special Characters including their pros, cons, and how they can be best used to get the most for your money/points.</p>
<p class="subheader">O'Shovah<br /></p>
<p class="body">The first Special Character mentioned in the Codex is Commander Farsight, or O'Shovah as he is also known. The fluff behind this guy is somewhat unusual for a Tau Commander, being the leader of a renegade enclave who has survived for hundreds of years due to some as yet unrevealed reason. His most obvious asset to any Tau army is his combat ability - being the only Fire Caste unit with any kind of combat weapon! Those with him are also more proficient at combat, and to show this Tau units in the army may buy upgrades increasing their stats somewhat.<br /><br />
However, this ability is only really useful on Crisis Suits, and probably just the Shas'vre bodyguards at best. It’s fairly expensive for what it is, and doesn't tend to make much of a difference to the hand-to-hand performance of normal Fire Warriors, so don't go purchasing lots of expensive Ork Fighter upgrades and charging into combat as soon as you can.<br /><br />
In conclusion:
</p>
<p class="subheader1">Advantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>A Tau HQ that can handle combat! Well, to a degree.</li>
<li>Allows for a quite fluffy army to be made.</li>
<li>A different model than most regular Shas'o's, which can be even be used just as a basic Shas'o for variation.</li>
</ol></p>
<p class="subheader1">Disadvantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>Limits what else you can take in your army, quite drastically in fact.</li>
<li><i>Ork Fighter</i> can be quite costly if you actually use it.</li>
<li>Less firepower than most regular Commanders.</li>
</ol></p>
<p class="subheader">Aun'Shi<br /></p>
<p class="body">Aun'Shi happens to be my favorite of the three here to be honest. Another fluffy character, who does a lot of what you pay for him. A slightly combat-orientated character with some original Special Rules, he works well put along with a unit of Fire Warriors as he then gains the use of even more extra abilities, and this time at no extra cost. In fact, the upgrade he confers to a Fire Warrior unit that he has joined is about as useful as Ork Fighter, and obviously much cheaper. Lastly, a lot of people can overlook this small, unarmored Ethereal in favor of cheaper Ethereals or Commanders with lots of weaponry, and so his effectiveness can come as a surprise. Mounting 11 Shas'la and Aun'Shi in an Ethereal can often lead to a small counter-attacking unit that your opponent won't be expecting.
</p>
<p class="subheader1">Advantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>Most survivable Ethereal there is.</li>
<li>Brings many special abilities to units that he joins.</li>
<li> Great value - basically all the benefits of a regular Ethereal, with Special Rules added on for relatively few points!</li>
</ol></p>
<p class="subheader1">Disadvantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>The Price of Failure rule still stands.</li>
<li>Putting Aun'Shi where he does best is also putting him where is he most likely to be killed (see above).</li>
<li>Don't expect that much from Aun'Shi in combat against dedicated assault troops.</li>
</ol>
<p class="subheader">Anghkor Prok<br /></p>
<p class="body">A limited edition model from Games Day 2001, Anghkor Prok's rules can be found at http://uk.games-workshop.com/tau/anghkor-prok/1/. As per the other Special Characters, no permission is required officially to take him, although you may run into some opposition at tournaments and the like as his rules aren't actually published in any Codex or Chapter Approved at present. Therefore it would be advisable to check this out with the organizer before bringing Anghkor to any major GW event.<br /><br />
First thing to be noticed is that Anghkor Prok is, unusually for a Shaper, an Independent Character. Now, this can be seen as a good thing as he can be used to split off from the main bulk of the Tau army to assault incoming troops and hold them up, thus preserving other Tau units which can be kept alive to keep shooting. However, under the 4th Ed. rules, the Master Shaper is eligible to be singled out more easily and so destroyed - a fact not helped by his low Toughness and Armor Save. That aside, the character certainly has his uses.<br /><br />
Stick Mr. Prok in a forest with a squad of 20 Kroot Carnivores and you've got a unit that will stay put until the 51st millennium. Using the Kroot's natural Fieldcraft abilities you can take pot shots at anything heading your way, and then attack it at closer range in the place where Kroot feel at home. Prok's beneficial abilities aid any Kroot within 6", and for every turn of a combat, so the more attacks you can have near him the better!<br /><br />

A secondary use for Anghkor Prok would be posting him with a vulnerable Tau unit (such an Ethereal) for protection, although beware for he isn't overly proficient (compared to most of the galaxy's HQ choices) in hand-to-hand.<br /><br />
To sum up:
</p>
<p class="subheader1">Advantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>Incredibly useful in a large unit of Kroot.</li>
<li>Can be positioned anywhere in the army to decent effect.</li>
<li>A cheap HQ choice if you already have an Ethereal.</li>
</ol></p>
<p class="subheader1">Disadvantages</p>
<p class="body">
<ol>
<li>Uses up one of those precious HQ slots.</li>
<li>A lot of points for a character with basically a Shaper statline!</li>
<li>Can't make use of all his special rules at once. One allows him to join Tau, whilst the other is only useful if he’s with Kroot - it's very unlikely that at any one time you won't be effectively wasting part of his value.</li>
</ol>

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