Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector – Tau Empire DLC

Exemplar of the Kauyon?

Is the Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector Tau DLC supporting the Greater Good?

Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector is one of the better Warhammer games out there, and whilst it isn’t for everyone, I thoroughly enjoy it. So far we’ve had an array of DLC added to the game, introducing many of the tabletop game’s favourite factions. We’ve seen the zealous Sisters of Battle and the vicious Orks as well as the unending hordes of Necrons and the rather disappointing Daemons. Now it’s time for my second favourite faction after the Greenskins to turn their guns upon their enemies, as the Tau take to the battlefield to deliver the Greater Good to all. By force if necessary.

Before getting into the actual gameplay of the shootiest of factions, I must say that the unit models look excellent. Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector has some pretty true-to-the-game designs for the models of all the armies so far, but these look especially impressive. The Cadre Fireblade and Ethereal look especially well put together, with facial expressions that you might expect for a fish warrior about to take to the field of battle. Whatever you imagine that would look like.

Warhammer: 40,000: Battlesector Tau DLC
The new unit models look excellent and have lots of personality.

In terms of units, there’s a solid array of choices, but as with the other DLC packs, there are some notable exceptions. You have your mainstay Fire Warriors and Crisis Suits as you’d expect, plus the sneaky Ghostkeel and Stealth Suits with their camouflage giving them survivability options. Heavy support comes from the Broadside and Hammerhead with their brutal railguns, covered by the likes of big Riptide battlesuits and nippy Piranha attack vehicles. Everything has a variety of options for weapons and drones, many of which are the classics you’d expect if you know the faction. The fact that there are no Kroot units is a huge missed opportunity I think. Maybe they’ll appear as their own DLC in future, but I wouldn’t expect it.

The lack of Kroot means that your melee options are incredibly limited. This is thematic for the faction, but considering how quickly most armies can close the distance, you can find yourself in a lot of trouble very quickly. Your Hammerhead and Broadside are built for extreme range so are pretty much useless unless you can keep them half a mile away from your targets, which is a challenge when your other units get chewed up in close combat so fast. This is compounded by the points cost of each unit, meaning you can’t really build an army that can hit multiple targets in a turn. I feel like the damage output of each unit needs to be just a touch higher to make them effective against most armies,

Warhammer: 40,000: Battlesector Tau DLC
Hopefully my gunline can take out these Orks before they get too close…

With that said, you do have some nice mitigations for this issue. Many units have the Markerlight ability which improves accuracy for nearby allies when targeting a designated enemy, much like in the tabletop game. The Cadre Fireblade also has a skill that means a unit of your choice will auto-hit their target. It has a long cooldown, but it can make all the difference when you really must make a low-percentage shot. Your drone options can be useful here too, but really the shield drone is kind of essential as it reduces damage taken.

Aside from the new faction, the most recent update has introduced a map editor that seems easy enough to use. Whilst it isn’t something I’m going to use myself, the fact that community maps are popping up is great. The included skirmish maps are solid enough, but being able to play through some fan-made ones is a lovely inclusion.

Whilst I don’t think the Tau are going to make huge strides on a competitive level without some alterations made either to damage output or points cost, they are fun to use and look great on the battlefield. Much like in previous releases, I do feel like a faction-focused mini-campaign would be a nice inclusion, but simply taking this as a new bunch of units to play with, it’s an enjoyable addition. I’m looking forward to seeing what else will be added in the future. Ad Mech or GeneStealer Cults would be fun.

Warhammer: 40,000: Battlesector Tau DLC
Well this could have gone better.

The Warhammer 40,000: Battlesector Tau DLC is available now.

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