The new formations have leaked! Some of them are quite nifty, check it out...
Farsight Enclaves DetachmentThis allows you to take regular Tau detachments as Farsight detachments, just like before. So far, all we have heard is that it has specifics but wasn't part of the leaks. It likely will be something along the lings of "All units must have BKR, all get Preferred Enemy: Orks in CC" and hopefully some other buff like Obsec crisis suits.
We also haven't seen the new Warlord Traits or the point costs for the FSE signature systems, but we do know that the old signature systems are still here. Woot, Fusion Blades!
Now, on to the formations!
Dawn Blade Contingent
- 0-1 Command: Commander/Commander Farsight with 1 XV8 Body guard unit OR The Eight
- 1+ Core: Hunter Cadre or Retaliation Cadre
- 1-10 Auxiliary per Core: Counterstrike Cadre, Rapid Insertion Force, Ranged Support Cadre, Piranha Firestorm Wing, Air Superiority Cadre, Assigned Air Asset, Allied Advance Cadre, Drone-Net VX1-0, Skysweep Missile Defence, Firebase Support Cadre
I initially missed how powerful this bonus is. Unlike the Hunter Contingent bonus, this one allows your entire army re-rolls against this target, not just the ones in the contingent. Suddenly this is just as dangerous as the Hunter Contingent to me; more dangerous if you are playing in the ITC where the Coordinated Firepower rule has been nerfed.
The Auxiliary choices include some of the ones from Kauyon, but the Ghostkeel, Riptide, and Stormsurge formations are noticeably missing. Fluffy!
I think they are highly unlikely to be seen at anything other than a themed for very casual game, but they are still a cool fluff addition. The biggest drawback with them now, is that you can't pick and choose which ones you field, you have to take them ALL.
Rapid Insertion Force
Benefits: Crisis and Riptide do not scatter when deep striking within 6" of the Stealth team, and gain Twin-Linked that turn if they land within 6" of the Stealth Team.
While this is similar to the Retaliation Cadre, with Stealth suits instead of the Broadside and Commander, it is noticeably weaker. The price difference between the two is so small, I can't see anyone picking this formation over the Retaliation Cadre, except when forced (aka, Rapid Insertion Force could be used as an Auxiliary in the Dawn Blade Contingent).
I had really high hopes for this as the "Farsight" formation of choice, but it turned out quite lame. It seems the Retaliation Cadre, despite the Broadsides, will end up being the go-to "Farsight" formation.
Air Superiority Cadre
You could take a Devilfish+DPod and try to keep them alive long enough to matter. However, the payoff isn't that great. Definitely a 'friendly' formation, if not a handicap.
The stealth bonus is better than I initially gave it credit for. Running this alongside marker teams inside ruins or with Jinking vehicles will drive your opponent nuts.
The Nova reactor bonus is a carry-over from the Apocalypse formation, and is quite handy. It makes the Earth Caste Pilot Array largely unnecessary on any of the Riptides in this formation and saves you some points.
The double tap is crazy. A Riptide's greatest shortcoming is its lack of firepower, this helps with that. You can spread the +1 BS to a lot more targets and makes. I see a drawback that you can't fully utilize this power if you are using your EWO, since that takes away your shooting phase. Riptides are also high priority targets for grav and the like, so you are under the gun to use the power early to get the most of it. So you have to think and use it wisely to get the most of it, even if that means losing a Riptide before you use it.
You could field 9 Riptides in an 1850 list and they will almost always be re-rolling NOVA. Insane
Given time to listbuild, I now find it hard to fit this into my list. The Dawn Blade Contingent is better than I initially thought and I can't fit both into the list since I only own 3 Riptides. I still think it is amazing, and taking it with a CAD might still be better than a Contingent.
The huge bonus, to me, is Interceptor. Suddenly, you have the option of BS3 markerlights during the Intercept phase. In the past, Tau could spam EWO to take out things like the Skyhammer, but then the Raven Guard got tons of cover against our EWO attacks. Now, a single marker drone squad can put enough markers on an enemy unit to strip all cover OR boost accuracy like crazy. This is a really good formation for filling out your list, since it can give you marker support All The Time and isn't too expensive.
This formation brings back the usefulness of adding a couple drones here and there, especially on suicide Monats.
RAW, this might actually help out the Drones in your opponent's army. Be aware!
That said, if you already wanted Breacher teams for assaulting enemy objectives, this formation is handy. The Pathfinders will most likely find a use somehow, be it Homing Beacon duty with a Recon Drone or markerlight duty while an Ethereal cruises in their ride. Full Mech armies can appreciate this formation, even if it isn't all that amazing.
Piranha Firestream Wing
Possibly the most ridiculous formation in Mont'ka, and a carryover from its Apocalypse form. The minimum cost is a piddly 160 points and the bonuses are fantastic. This is the only way Tau can get free points, and they can potentially get a LOT of free points with this formation. In theory, a fully loaded Firestorm Wing can drop ~220 points in Gun Drones, EVERY TURN. In order to stem the flow, your opponent must destroy an entire piranha squad, otherwise it is wasted energy.
You will want to own more Piranhas and Drones than you can fit on the board (or own...) Another drawback is that this formation gets ridiculously expensive (easily 1000 points when fully loaded) and loses much of its hitting power once the solo Piranha is destroyed. In addition, all the free drones you'll be ferrying on are only Gun Drones and they cannot even hold an objective, let alone contest one.
Skysweep Missile Defense
Benefits: Skyrays within 12" of the Devilfish can fire any number of their remaining Seekers. The formation gets 5+ cover save against shooting from flying things as long as the Devilfish is alive.
All-in-all, a let down. Granting the Skyrays EWO would have been dope, but instead they got a lack-lustre cover save against specific units. Not a terrible thing, but when compared to other formation bonuses, it is quite lame.
Ranged Support Cadre
An interesting formation. If you already like Pathfinders and want multiple units for marker support, this could be nice. They also get a decent survival buff with Shrouded and deploying last. The Broadsides will be great Overwatch help with all their Twin-Linked weaponry, provided they are in weapon range.
Depending on how you equip everything, this could be quite pricey, and the payoff for the Broadsides isn't that great (They are already pretty accurate). I can see this being able to do some work against Air Targets since even one marker hit will strip cover OR buff the XV88's back up to standard BS. For my taste, it is too expensive when it mostly just helps the Pathfinders. However, I am biased since I don't like Pathfinders OR Broadsides.
Non-Tau stuffNaturally, there are some other tidbits for non-Tau players. This time, it is for the Astra Militarum. You can probably find some of those formations just by Googling it. There are Tank Aces (Like Flying Aces) and something called a Battlelord and the Obsidion Knight is mentioned so either he didn't actually die in the plasma rift or he is one of those Dread Pirate Roberts that keeps getting replaced by the next best guy. Exciting stuff ahead, but for now, we will just talk Tau around here.
*EDIT: I've had some time to mull these over and so I've added some extra thoughts to the formations I've had revelations about.