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[Fun with 40k] Clint’s Tau Vol 2, Part 1: Troop Surge

[Fun with 40k] Clint’s Tau Vol 2, Part 1: Troop Surge

Clint is back again discussing his Tau endeavors as we get ready to begin the Ceres IV Campaign…

I am back from the amazing event which is NOVA Open here in the DC/Virginia area. Though I went to kick friendly and figurative dirt in the faces of other Warmachine players in good-natured competition, I spent most of my free moments wheeling and dealing with vendors over Tau. After also winning a raffle (woo hoo!) and trading away a few spare models on Bartertown, I expanded my collection thusly:

  • Riptide x1
  • Hammerhead x1
  • Crisis Suits x….9
  • Stealth Suits x3
  • Pathfinders x20
  • Darkstrider
Yay for Apocalypse Formations!

I stated in my first write-up I was shying away from armor and despite the Hammerhead pick-up, I’m actually more resolute. I plan to use zero armor pieces in my eventual “completed” force. The deal on it was good so I picked it up in hopes of prodding Plarzoid into a trade from his Tau bucket. I still have hopes he’ll complete a force after his Dark Angels and join me in the Tau greater-goodliness. I also contemplated picking up the official model for the Fireblade Cadre, but thought better of it since he’s basically a $25 Fire Warrior model I can create myself with a few bits and some green stuff.

Going back to the list of new additions, you read it correctly, I have added nine Crisis Suits bringing my total to fifteen. Because the nature of this project is character, creativity, and aesthetically driven, I now have enough spare models to create all the concepts I can dream up and store them in a rogues gallery of retinue options, so to speak. They’ll be a lot more complicated to build so for this installment, I’m grinding out as many Fire Warriors and other force staples as I can.

In building this round of Fire Warriors, I’ve noticed a few smart things GW has done with this kit and couple building short-cuts I was able to take. Firstly, Pulse Rifles and their paired left-arm are molded on the sprues directly across from each other. For those of you in Plarzoidland saying, “duh. moron.” I’ll point out that pairing these arms up again after you’ve removed every bit from every sprue is a PITA. I’ve taken to cutting off the pieces I need from sprues as I am about the trim and glue them on a model. Common bits like torsos and legs are fine to free from their sprue prisons at will, but leaving the arms paired until the last moment has proven to be a time and headache saver.

Usually, this is the worst you have to deal with.

Next, I would like to chastise and compliment GW on the placement for vents, flash, and sprue connections/cut-aways. Because of the addition of a sprue, all vents are located there and never on a part of the model. Awesome. Rarely, a model bit will end up looking imploded and collapsed after not getting enough plastic material into that part of the mold. Bad. But GW is easy to deal with in replacing a faulty sprue. Awesome.

The plastic kits have no flash. Period. Awesome. The Fine Cast kits have flash. Bad. I don’t know anything about the costs associated with making models, but I would make these kits plastic and just be done with it. The quality of the material is just that high.

The plastic kits do have mold lines. Bad. The degree of severity ranges, but for my level of acceptable detail and painting expectations, I’m alright with this and if I feel it warrants attention, I run my hobby knife side-ways along with the line to taper it off. Paint truly covers up a lot.

Now we get to the connection points of the bits to the sprue. Awesome. The crafty placing of these points makes it very easy to hide as they often end up in places where a model will be glued together. The connection point of most heads for models in the 40k range being at the base of the neck is the most common example of this good decision making. When it comes to Fire Warriors, the bottoms of their feet make it easy to cover cut-aways with flock and the backs of their arms are easy to cover with shoulder pads. I have to call out GW here though for despite all the excellent mold making strategies up to this point, they can’t seem to get the shoulder joints on these Fire Warriors to meet up as nicely as Space Marines do. Again, it’s extremely forgiving situation with an oversized shoulder pad to cover up the misalignment. In this regard, I would suggest making the right shoulder fit as perfectly as you can while maintaining a close-is-good-enough attitude with the left shoulder.

Not quite as bad as the Khador gap, and easily covered up.

The trade I made for the Riptide was a god-send. My force is likely to auto-include two to three Riptides as that model represents the pinnacle of the all suit army, effective or not. I made a trade with a very gracious fellow for a suit that included magnetized weapon options, but had not yet a lick of paint on it. As we are looking to begin our campaign in a week, this will save a boat-load of time. Upon inspection, I noticed the ankles are raised above the base surface just like the new Broadsides and current Crisis Suit models. I was puzzled as this is a fairly sizable model and yet is relying on the three-toed connection point on two feet only to support 100% of the weight. On the Broadside model, these toes are not even flat on the underside and merely have an outline of plastic where the toes connect to the base. This will have to be remedied.

It’s so purdy!

This concludes part one of this two part installment. Part two will follow shortly where I’ll expound on some ankle reinforcement techniques and reveal my first three Crisis Suit choices.

In the meantime, I was told this past weekend that though the Tau codex lists a second weapon selection of the same type will create a twin-linked version of that weapon on any suit, I can also pay the base cost for a weapon over again and end up with two of that weapon and am able to fire each. Is this true? If I pay 15 points for a Plasma Gun and another 15 points base cost for another Plasma Gun, I’ll get two? Is this rules Kosher? Are there any other unit or suit kitting options I should be aware of along those same lines?

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