Tuesday, 10 May 2011

ASMOH: what went wrong

Edit: a quick hello to Rathstar who was also at asmoh as well and did rather well with his dark eldar. Was great to meet a fellow blogger and Tau enthusiast.
Well popular opinion is that you learn more from a defeat then from a victory. That being true, I learnt a lot from my games at the sad muppets society a small matter of honour tournament.
I can safely say that I did learn a lot. My games seemed to be pretty close but ultimately I couldn't get a victory in any of my games.

My first game was against an ork army. Mission was kill points, pitched battle deployment at 1250 points. First thing to say is that my opponent was a fantastic person to play against. However, the problem that I faced against his army were the low kill points in his force. Most of which involved killing large units of troops or hard to kill nob bikers to get kill points. The 3 relatively easy kill points his army had I got fairly easily. My bad rolling can to the fore in this game (as would be true throughout the tournament) however without meaning to make excuses for my game I could have played better. Having lost the roll for deployment. I should have placed the majority of my force opposite his bikers in a refused flank set up. Rather then mainly central. Admittedly this would have left me closer to his bikes they would have had to weather the storm against my entire force for two turns before being able to charge anything meaningful. My inexperience in facing nob bikers made me set up more centrally leaving me exposed to more of his army ultimately costing me the game.
Lesson learned- force the opponent to meet you on your terms. His bikers would have been a threat, but not with 5 vs my army.

My second game was against a null deployment tyranid force for capture and control. I made the mistake of bringing my army in on the first turn. His army arrived on the second turn, right next to mine. Although I took relatively few casualties from his shooting, my own shooting in the following turn was fairly poor. Meaning that his army could ravage mine with impunity. A could of mistakes that I made which could have given me a bit more of an opportunity to claw back a victory. If I had left my hammerhead off the board or more central in my force. Then I could have dropped a pie plate on the termagants holding his objective. Being as they were out of synapse range chances are they would have run for it off the board. As it was I ended the game on a loss as his termagants managed to get within 3" of my objective on their run move. By quarter of an inch. Curses.

Lesson learned: I don't have to deploy my army in this case it has done me more harm then good. I should have held the majority back for a counter attack. Maybe kept some of the pathfinders to come on first turn about 3ft from each other. Forcing him to separate his units to engage both of my units of pathfinders. Then as my army arrived in subsequent turns I could have dealt with whichever half of his force was the most dangerous.

My third game was against an outflanking scout army with a few thunderfire cannons and shrike to give the army fleet. With the majority of his army outflanking, their wasn't much to engage in the first couple of turns. I did eliminate the thunderfire cannons fairly quickly. But the rest of his army outflanked more or less straight into combat with my force, either tying me up or killing me. Both were just as bad as the other. The game ended with him managing to roll high enough on his fleet rolls for two units, 6 and 4 respectively, to get a 5th turn win, contesting my objective on a four and just getting within 3 inches of an objective. Given what was left of our armies at the end of turn 5 had we had a 6th turn I would have managed to finish off 2 of his squads, leaving me with the victory.
Lesson learned: in this game I should have been more aggressive. Despite my obvious disadvantages when he got close, had I been more aggressive I could have prevented him from tying my more important units up in combat.

My fourth and final game was pitched battle 6 objectives, against a blood angels player with 2 drop podding dreadnoughts and a couple of outflanking baals, etc. This game went alright, the only thing that really hampered my game was the inability to stop one of his ironclad dreadnoughts. With a few lucky difficult terrain rolls he made it into combat with my broadsides. From that point there was nothing I had to eliminate his dreadnought. Missile pod fire just pattered off it like a light summers rain. The game ended with both parties holding 2 objectives. He hadn't realised that one of my devilfish still had firewarriors in. Note if he had asked I would have told him, I hadn't realised he didn't know though.
Lessons learned. I need to increase my redundancy. Once my broadsides had been engaged by his iron clad in combat, my hammerheads having been taken out by his dreads when they first dropped.

Notes on battle and observations:
- my army performed alright. Two narrow losses and one tight draw, all of which could have easily gone to a draw or victory on my point.
- vehicles were useless, as soon as they took one penetrating hit they dropped from the sky.
- Broadsides were great but could have done with two units of 2 rather then one of 3, should have dropped the plasma guns from them as well. But I took what I had available.
- Firewarriors really are useless, less then. Despite having the highest hit rate in my army (in the last two games they actually hit half the time which was better then my units that I rely on to do damage). They lack anything remotely threatening to anything or anyone. A meltagun or two in a unit would have made a difference against most armies. Forcing my opponents to risk getting close or choosing discretion over valour.
-devilfish are rubbish, yeah it may be one of the better surviving transports, but is it has no offensive capability, no firepoints (not that that's a real concern when firewarriors have no decent guns). I think it sums up the tau army perfectly, over priced and a lack of offensive capability.
-I think I may have to get more infantry in my army, be it battlesuits, kroot or maybe some lighter vehicles such as piranhas only to be used for blocking and contesting.


  1. I agree whole heartedly with the flaws in the Tau army. On paper they pack a shit load of big scary guns but in the game you only hit 50% of the time (if your lucky) and pathfinders dont have stealth so get shot to shit as soon as your oppo is able to get them and with such a small unit they lose effectiveness after a few casualties. I do love my Tau but they are rapidly becoming the most suffering codex. I know some are older but all the rules that made Tau cool and you pay for dont even exist and havent been modified to gain any benefit from any more. sounds like quite a tough tourney, some of those builds sounds nasty, like the 100% bike army I had to face that time, turn 2 combat vs Tau is game over

  2. Ouch, 100% bike army, I can see the attraction of kroot against an army like that, my enable you to hold them back for a turn at least.