Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Tau Bastion

I'm working out the design here, but my friend and I are having trouble deciding on the weapons it should have.

The imperial/chaos bastions have 4 Heavy Bolters and a Lascannon on top (there is some variation, but let's just go with this). These are automated weapons, which means they fire at WS 2 if they aren't manned. For most of our games I imagine we'd ignore the automation and have it be more of a fight to take it over to utilize the weapons, but the automation was part of our dispute.

Heavy Bolter is |36"|S5|AP4| Heavy 3|
Lascannon is |48"|S9|AP2| Heavy 1|

We contemplated a Missle-Pod to replace the Heavy Bolter. Same range, +2S, 1 less shot. It seemed fair enough. The Lascannon seems obvious, Railgun. I liked the idea of the Ion cannon better, which he didn't mind. My thought was mostly on the sub-munition. It doesn't make sense for the Bastion not to house whatever it needs to power the submunition, but it's already flat-out better than a lascannon. I was thinking of doing a complete rules write-up with some options. Eh, I'll do it right now.

*~5 minutes pass*

Okay, so rules aren't that complicated...but here are thoughts:
I like AV13 over 14. Obviously 14 is better, but our Hammerhead is only 13 on it's best side and it just feels more right. I also think our firepower options are going to be a bit better, no matter the combination (there are some that are worse, but I was going for equal to or better than because the worse seems a lot worse and the better seems a bit better)

Weapon Combinations:
4 Long Barrel Burst Cannons (It's a Forgeworld varient; Just a Burst Cannon, but 36" range)
1 Railgun

4 Missle Pods
1 Ion Cannon

3 Missle Pods
1 Railgun

I was also contemplating some of the XV9 weapons, but they're all rather short range, so I'm not sure they make sense.

The problems:
I like the idea of 3 weapons as opposed to 4. It's going to be a round bastion, so they'd all have a wider arc of fire (120º insead of 90º). I also want them Twin-linked. I think it fits for Tau weapons. They're drone controlled (see paragraph about automated weapons in the Planetstrike rulebook). Tau drone technology is supposed to beat out everyone else.

My friend very much argues against the twin-linking. He agrees completely that it makes sense from a "But they're Tau!" perspective, but is "not going to give you a better bastion". The last time we talked about it, the idea of AV 13 hadn't occurred to me.

Now that I've babbled on about it for a bit, I think these configurations are all reasonable:

Tau Bastion

AV 13 all around.
BS 2, Twin-linked automated weapons. (This means they are not twin-linked if manned, but do get to use the firer's BS.)

3 Long-barreled Burst Cannons
1 Ion Cannon

You can upgrade all three LB-Burst Cannons to Missle Pods for +18pts

You can upgrade the Ion Cannon to a Railgun for +35pts.

The points were sort of thrown in (difference between TL-BC and TL-MP for a suit and difference between an Ion Cannon and a Railgun). I don't have a points cost for the whole thing, they're free in Planet Strike.../shrug.

I don't know how I feel about losing the TL when the gun is manned. It makes it so a unit of Fire Warriors in the bastion (BS 3) makes it worse, so it makes it only really useful for Stealth Suits to be inside. Maybe the spotter from a Sniper Drone team with the Drones on top firing their own weapons (but then they're vulnerable), but he could only man one gun. (It's probably worth noting that a bastion can be occupied without the guns being manned. If you want to use one of the gun ports as a fire point the gun can't fire as well, but 2 models can shoot through the port.

Basically it works really well as a turret, which I don't necessarily like. I was also going to put walls around the base, about 2" out, with a little "arm" showing that they were pulled in against the hull when it was dropped in. I've been working on it a bit, but I have four walls. If I go with three guns, four walls will look weird...hrm...thoughts?

Inspiration? Forgeworld: Tau Burst Cannon Turret


  1. That sounds like a solid idea for the bastion. I think the weaponry is reasonable and as long as it is weighed up in the context of the scenario or battle points level then it should be no big deal. Perhaps you get 500 points of Tau and the bastions against 1500 points of enemy but then you get another 1000 points after 3 turns or something. Then it's down to the enemy to attack fast and hard before he gets outgunned.

    In any case, I think have three walls coming off a central circular piece would be best. then you could have a MP/BC facing each space between the walls and the turretted cannon on top having a 360 arc.

    Looking forward to what you come up with in any case.

  2. I talked to my roommate about this over lunch...he is utterly insistent that it is overpowered...

    He was completely on board with it until I mentioned a 120º arc of fire. That suddenly made it too much better again. My logic was if you keep it a 90º, it drastically lengthens the dead zones you can approach through. I need to math it out and show him the difference maybe?

    I'm going to do some plans tonight. I'll scan them and put them up tomorrow if I like what I come up with.

  3. Sidenote: How do you get updates so quickly? Is it just constant checking or is there someway to register for e-mail updates?

    I was initially disappointed I couldn't subscribe to e-mail updates for my own blog...Did I just not see the button?

  4. I really don't think it will be overpowered as long as you account for it.

    That can either be through the scenario, or through giving it a points value and making you take it as part of your army. Also, it can be weakened by making you deploy it first, whether or not you are deploying first as a whole.

    As a ballpark, I'd put it at 180 points with no upgrades. I'd consider that a tad expensive but it's a good (high) place to start from. Your friend might find that it isn't as though as he thinks. I mean, few people consider Land Raiders overpowered even though they are stronger than this and with roughly comparable firepower.

    The way to get updates is to access the Dashboard. It's a tab at the very top of the blog when you sign into Blogger. Then it will show all of the blogs you are following and which of them have been updated with a new post. It's much quicker than browsing through 5 or more blogs by hand. Unfortunately it doesn't show comments on blog posts so you have to check in for topics you're interested in one by one.

    If you want an update when somebody has commented on your blog though, go to settings, then to comments and enter the email address you want to receive them at in the box near the bottom.

  5. I do the blog reel thing already, thanks for the comment notification. That will keep me from getting distracted spam checking it for the first 15m after I ask a question :)

    I was really just considering it a cool piece of terrain that one day could be apart of potential Planetstrike battles. They're free in Planetstrike (points wise), so I wanted to keep them roughly the equal to an Imperial Bastion.

  6. It looks good to me. If we're ever in the same neighbourhood I'd happily play aaginst it.

    The email notification is a double edged sword though. It's great to keep you updated but it can also be a downer when nobody comments on your posts. I try to comment on plenty of other people's though, mostly because I like their ideas and want them to be encouraged to do more.

  7. Complete side track: I keep seeing these progress bar gadgets. I saw it on your blog first, now it's sort of popping up. I can't find it in the list and don't want to look through all 1800 of them.

    What is it!?!?!?!

  8. I got it from Asmo on

    He got it from someone else though. I have the email of the text you have to copy and paste. Send me an email ( and I'll send you over the details. It's really easy to get set up and altering it is a breeze.