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With the help ofExpeditional ' Cadres, the star system is graded a class 1 colony, moving steadily towards becoming a fully fledged sept. However, all this preparation comes to naught as the sector becomes a war zone, targeted for xenos cleansing by the Ultrammines Space Marines Chapter. Many colonists are slain. An Imperial counterthTUst attacks the colonies in the Zeist sector.
It is a bright day for the Tau, who saw a foe with vastly superior numbers crushed. The old powers of the galaxy, corrupt and bloated as they are, struggle in what is surely their death throes. Such is the cycle, for new growth pushes through old, new stars form out of the dust of suns gone supernova in ages past. In the galaxy's far east, a new power is rising; its destiny will not be denied. The Eastern Fringe is a war zone.
Much of this equipment arrives strike warfare, exterminating resistance and paving the way pre-fabricated, lowered into position by massive dropships for the seeding colonies that follow directly behind the that descend from orbit. Planetary rule is maintained by fighting spearheads. Many of the planets and star systems councils of the native race, although they will quietly report that have fallen before their onslaught were once under to Tau advisors. Occasionally, their decisions are overruled the Imperium of Mankind's control.
Intercepted messages by the Tau, but such instances decrease with time. Native confirm what high-ranking captives and alien collaborators customs are allowed and studied by the Tau, and so long as inveigled by the Water caste have also said - the Imperium's they do not inhibit efficiency, they are allowed to continue.
A N EW S U N R I S I N G Based on the number of planets seized in the initial phase of Whether willingly, under the intimidating tlueat of a pulse the Third Sphere Expansion, the logistical teams within the rifle, or after a series of crushing defeats in bloody battles, Water caste have been projecting likely outcomes - to aid many populations now find themselves as part of the the Ethereals' plan making. According to their estimations, growing Tau Empire.
In this dark age of war and barbarity, the Tau will more than double their holdings - that is, the where no quarter is asked and none given, any alien - be number of occupied planets in the Tau Empire - within they human, Pakasar, N'deemi or any of a multitude of other the next races - all have deep set fears and expectations of what a 60 tau'cyr, a time period roughly equivalent to 50 Terran years.
The volume of captured alien worlds planetary takeover will be like. Most have heard accounts and especially Imperial worlds, with their vast resources or rumours of brutal Ork enslavement, insidious Hrud and large populations are fuelling further growth at an infestations or horrific tortures at the hands of cruel Eldar exponential rate. When apprised of these mathematical overseers. While the Tau fight to win, they will, after each predictions, the Ethereal High Council simply nod; the plan of their victories, repeat their offers for peaceful surrender.
On dozens of worlds, a new day is rising. What happens when their opponents finally accept the Tau's terms for a ceasefire is shockingly civil. Tau In the aftermath of a fierce battle, even as fires still interpreters move amongst the people, speaking the native blaze upon the newly renamed planet of Mu'gulath Bay, language and seeking to calm their fears, telling them Commander Shadowsun turns her attentions onwards.
With to embrace change and promising them that soon they one of the most heavily defended of Imperial worlds in the will see the light of a Greater Good. These ambassadors system conquered and burning beneath her feet, many new are escorted by phalanxes of armoured Tau warriors and, courses are now open for colonisation.
To take advantage of while they are peaceful, they brook no violence, whether them, the Tau must move quickly. The directing class of Tau, t ones known. The distinctive streamlined terns send disturbing news, their transmissions indicating trouble could well be coming from those anarchic Ork-held sec o. History has proven that there is no foe the Tau can not overcome, and soon, the very stars themselves will be reforged in the cause of the Greater Good.
Each entry describes the unit and gives the specific rules you will need in order to use them in your games. The Army of the Third Sphere section pg refers back to these entries.
The second part of this section, known as the Arsenal of Expansion, details the armoury of weapons and equipment available to each Tau unit. The exception is unique items of wargear, or Signature Systems; details for these items can be found with the special characters to which they belong. Those within such a team swear to support one another at all costs for the rest of their lives. They will even willingly sacrifice their own lives in order to better aid their com-rades.
It is an ennobling ritual and symbolic of the drivingforce behind the Tau Empire, that an individual must submit his individuality to the greater purpose of the community. No Joe can evade the Warlord once they have fallen under his crosshairs. Enemy models cannot take Look Out, Sir rolls against your Warlord's shooting attacks. If your Warlord has no ranged weapons, re-roll this result.
One use only. Declare your Warlord is using this ability at the start of one of your Shooting phases.
A unit consisting entirely of models with this special rule not counting drones benefits from Heroic Morale, even if they are not accompanied by an Independent Character. This Warlord has mastered the battlesuit art of striking at his target while evading retribution. If your Warlord is not jet Pack Infantry, re-roll this result. Using overlappingfields of. Declare your Warlord is using this abi lity at the start of one of your Movement phases.
Remember that a unit can still only fire Overwatch once each phase. When generating Warlord Traits, a Commander or Ethereal may either roll on one of the Warlord Traits table s in the Warhammer 40, rulebook, or roll on the table pre ented on the right. Exemplar of the Selfless Cause. The Warlords heroic example inspires his warriors to ever greater acts Predator of the Skies.
For that phase, the Warlord, and his unit, have the Skyfire special rule. Using speed and sheer aggression, the Wadont pushes his forces as he seeks to land a decisive offensive blow upon the enemy. Your Warlord, and any unit he joins, does not scatter when arriving by Deep Strike. If your Warlord cannot Deep Strike, re-roll this result. Some vehicles include two drones - these start the game attached to the vehicle. Drones do not have the Bulky special rule.
This means that while they are attached, they squad members in all regards. They are unable to leave can make shooting attacks as if they were passengers their unit and must maintain unit coherency with their shooting from Fire Points, using their location on the unit at all times. Drones taken as upgrades cannot vehicle to determine line of sight, range etc.
Unlike other download options, however, and so do not pay for them models shooting from Fire Points, attached drones must if their unit does so.
Target Acquired abilities used by a Tau vehicle, or vehicle For example: If a vehicle is destroyed before it has detached its drones, the drones are automatically destroyed along with it. If the disembarking from an Open-topped Transport.
All Independent Character then leaves the unit, all his drones from a vehicle or vehicle squadron must detach surviving drones also leave the unit, forming a separate at the same time - they then form a single new unit.
After detaching, drones cannot re-attach to any vehicle, If the Independent Character is killed whilst part of a but they can embark on Transport vehicles in the same unit, his surviving drones are thereafter part of that unit manner as other drones. Drones that started the game attached to a vehicle do If the Independent Character is killed while he is not your opponent only needs to destroy the vehicle, not award Victory Points when destroyed.
In addition, joined to another unit, do not remove any surviving and not that vehicle's detached drones as well, to be drones - the unit is not destroyed until all the drones awarded any Victory Points it is worth.
These drones cannot join other units. Another Independent Character can j oin the surviving drones, but as they are not his upgrades, he cannot take them with him if he then joins another unit. Special Rules: It is a position of great honour, and can only be attained after years progressing through the ranks - there are no shortcuts or exceptions. The final test to advance from the shas'el level is to have repeated success on the battlefield.
To be named shas' o is to be proven a master in the martial arts, a first rate tactician and a true disciple of the art of war. Commanders that hail from the Elsy'eir and T'olku Septs are typically considered more cerebral in nature, ordering their troops from behind the front lines and only entering the fray themselves upon great need.
There are times when hubris gets the better of these proud military masters, and in such situations, the council of the Ethereals reins the Commanders back in. It is constantly said that 'there is no substitute for victory, but this is balanced by the virtues of the Code of Fire and the Greater Good. Personal heroics, while lauded, are never an end unto themselves. It is a rare that a malk 'la must take place - a ritual discipline meted out by the Ethereals to those deemed to have erred in judgement in regards to the Greater Good.
Depending on their situation, sept and renown, a Tau Commander can be called upon to lead anything from a cadre to a coalition. The number and size of previous commands is reflected in the rings confining their long scalp lock.
Those new to the rank might be given a single cadre, a force numbering a hundred or so warriors, whilst the greatest military leaders, those whose names and victories are most honoured, can call countless millions to arms with but a single word.
Upon attainting the rank of shas'o, a member of the Fire caste will serve his sept until death or until he has earned honoured retirement, though the most successful Commanders are asked to join the military high command, or shas'ar'tol. Each of the Spheres of Expansion has its notable Commanders - great heroes whose teachings are still used at the Fire caste academies.
There, the ways of the Wise Hunter, a great conqueror of the initial expansions, can be heard, as well as those of Commander Quicks trike, hero of the Bork'an Sept. Many references are made to Commander Trues tar, the female military leader whose brilliant career was marred by a single tragic error, and to the Desert Beast, the wily Commander Dawnstrike, whose exploits of feigned retreat are often emulated, but never bettered. Yet of all these great lords of the Fire caste, there are none whose battle record can come close to equaling that of Commander Puretide, the noble master whose name was behind the greatest victories of the triumphant Second Sphere Expansion.
There are vast differences in approach and philosophy between the varied Tau Fire caste leaders. Jet Pack Infantry Character. Crisis battlesuit pg Independent Character, upporting Fire pg 32 , Very Bulky. They embody the roles of royalty and the priesthood, and the deference paid to them is the closest thing to mysticism in Tau society. The Ethereals find themselves in a binding role - guiding the other castes to work together for the Greater Good.
An Ethereal must be a consummate leader and motivator: The absolute control which Ethereals exhibit over the other castes of the Tau Empire is a mystery. Many assume such manipulation is a form of innate psychic ability; others feel that the faultless loyalty the Ethereals inspire has been contrived by some unseen technology, or is even the result of some pheromone-based reaction. The most primitive races Tau forces have encountered believe the Ethereals are deified beings, leaders of an advanced people chosen for greatness.
Naturally, the Ethereals themselves help propagate and encourage this particular myth.
As the Tau do their utmost to prevent any Ethereal from being slain or captured, there have been few opportunities to conduct tests, and those that have been performed offer no conclusions, and far more questions. The presence of an Ethereal is motivational, but they are not mere figureheads; they are also reverential leaders for whom any Tau would willingly lay down their life.
By invoking the elemental truths, an Ethereal can inspire those around him to perform feats above and beyond what is normally considered possible - bravery in the face of certain death, an increased focus as enemies draw near, an ability to withstand crippling pain or a sudden celerity that allows them to maintain a weight of fire even on the move. The Tau themselves do not question the source of these powers, accepting the greatness of their leaders on faith. Infantry Character.
Independent Character, Stubborn. Failure is Not An Option: AJJ friend! Pinnilla and Regroup te rs. If the Ethereal is slain, the elemental power ends immediately. Affected models have ilie Stubborn special rule. Affected models fire an extra shot with pulse weapons pg 66 when firing at a target within half the weapon's maximum range.
This does not affect pulse bombs, but includes Kroot rifles firing pulse rounds. Storm of Fire can only affect a unit once per turn, regardless of how many Ethereals invoke it. Affected models can fire Snap Shots after running. For some, this is a practical realisation that the tactical versatility required by Crisis or Stealth Teams eludes them; for others, it is simply a preference to remain squarely situated with the heart of any Tau gunline.
Fire blades are the most grizzled and seasoned Fire Warriors of their cadre, whose skill at the Fire Warrior's art of battle leads them to eschew battlesuit technology. They are excellent field leaders and their long experience has taught them exactly where to place shots to maximise damage.
It is on the firing line that a Cadre Fireblade really comes into his own. There, they radiate a steadying calm, directing their Fire Warriors to maintain accurate fire no matter the circumstances, instilling each trooper with the precision and efficiency that is the hallmark of thousands of years of martial teachings. Whether breaking the impetus of an advancing horde of greenskins or seeking to bring down the heavily armoured Space Marines of the Imperium, no one knows a Fire Warrior's strength better than a Cadre Fireblade.
A Cadre Fire blade will extol what they believe to be the Tau's strength - overwhelming infantry firepower! Theirs is the ability to drive and direct Fire Warriors as they pour volley after volley of merciless pulse fire onto the target. Fire blades were once Fire Warrior troopers like any other in the cadre, and as they gained experience, they rose to become shas'ui: Whereas most of these seasoned leaders eventually choose the great honour of donning a battlesuit, there are a few who instead The military path that takes a soldier to become a Cadre Fire blade can never rise as high as the rank of shas' o - they are limited to a level just beneath that of shas'el.
Nor does the title carry with it the elan associated with those who wear a battlesuit. Nonetheless, Cadre Fire blade, or shas'nel in the Tau language, is a highly respected role - not least because of their willingness to forgo prestige.
The constant drilling and workman-like efficiency of a Cadre Fireblade is, to the Tau, a willing embrace of their most beloved concept, the Tau'va - the Greater Good. Combat armour pg 70 , pulse rifle pg 66 , photon grenades, markerlight pg Volley Fire: If the Cadre Fire blade, and every model in his unit, remain tationa. If they pass this ancient ritual which varies from sefll lo sep then they are fit to become a shas 'ui - a veteran considertxl battles uit-worthy.
Only Corlr nders are allowed to retirefrom active service, where they be honoured to join the council of advisors and play a ater part in Tau politics. Other than death, this is the only U'll w leave the Tau military. Bred for generations to maximise size and strength, these warriors-to-be are enrolled in Fire caste academies as soon as they can walk, institutions whose sole purpose is to produce soldiers to serve the growing Tau Empire.
There they are rigorously prepared, in mind and body, to become Fire Warriors - the professional infantry that forms the backbone of the Hunter Cadres of every sept. It is said with pride that behind every Fire Warrior stands thousands of years of training in the military arts and instruction in the laws of the Code of Fire: Tau Fire Warriors are superbly equipped for battle and a large part of their training is to acclimate themselves with the use of their high-tech gear.
All Fire Warriors wear multi-layered body armour that provides defence against high velocity or explosive rounds. Thanks to their mastery of metal fusions, the armour is lightweight, especially in comparison to conventional materials - such as those used by Orks or the Imperium. The enlarged sinistral shoulder pad is particularly useful, as Fire Warriors are trained to use this as a shield, often positioning it towards incoming fire to increase their protection.
Their helmets contain a number of digitised aids, including sensors, target-tracking readouts, air quality levels and communications uplinks. The arsenal available to Fire Warriors is formidable, with individuals carrying either a pulse rifle or a pulse carbine. With this advanced armament, Fire Warriors can Ia, down a withering fusillade upon their foes. Their range and hitting power outclasses the standard weapons of every race the Tau have yet encountered.
Fire Warrior Teams consist of between six and twelve warriors. A team leader, or shas'ui, is a veteran wanior whose experience has prepared him to command.
The Fire caste puts utmost importance on acting in a coordinated fashion upon the battlefield. Needle acrifices or inadequately supporting nearby teams are considered great failures. Fire Warrior Teams drill endlessly in setting up overlapping fields of fire and positioning themselves so that they can efficiently protect other teams should they be attacked.
Such rigorous training produces Fire Warriors to whom covering fire is second nature - able to send volleys of pulse fire at a foe closing upon their comrades with a single command flashed through the comm-system. While a Fire Warrior Team is formidable in its own right, an interlocking cadre of teams is even stronger than the sum of its parts. Such inter-unit dynamics have foiled many foes. During the Tau victories over the Orks during the Great War of Confederation, time and again the waves of greenskins almost closed with the Tau gunlines, only to find their final charge defeated by the literal wall of pulse fire that the combined teams discharged.
It is a lesson that resounds through the Fire caste academies - 'only by supporting our comrades can we defeat the superior numbers of our foes '. Fire Warrior Shas'ui is Infantry Character. Combat armour pg 70 , pulse rifle pg 66 , photon grenades. Supporting Fire pg A Pathfinder's foremost role is not to engage the enemy, but instead to maximise the efficiency of the rest of their cadre.
They operate ahead of their comrades, close to their foe, to accurately scout the enemy. In such a position, a Pathfinder's life is always under threat. For this reason and more, Pathfinders are held in high regard by every caste. They are not protected by a battlesuit or stealth field generators, yet they are far from helpless.
Pathfinders also bear markerlights to guide the firepower of the rest of the cadre against optimal targets. Holding a markerlight on a distant enemy while your own position is being overrun is a selfless act, but Pathfinders epitomise the Greater Good, and by their actions, many battles are won. By infiltrating the battlefield, they can also activate homing beacons or positional relays - bringing reinforcements to the fray with greater precision. Some teams also carry a few rail rifles - especially useful against power armoured infantry.
An even more recent addition to the Pathfinder's arsenal is the ion rifle. Able to fire in two distinct modes, the ion rifle can vaporise light vehicles, but is unstable when J overcharged. Many Pathfinder shas'uis employ drones, and in the Third Sphere Expansion, new variants specially designed to assist Pathfinder Teams have been developed.
Trading lives for ground is anathema to the Tau, and the Fire caste is trained to retreat and fight another day. While every sept has tales of crafty Pathfinders escaping against impossible odds, even the best-laid extraction plans can fall through.
All Tau warriors are willing to lay down their lives for the Greater Good, but Pathfinders find self-sacrifice called for more often than all other cadre teams combined: Despite this, or perhaps because of it, the Fire caste academies are inundated by volunteers wishing to be Pathfinders, eager to do their utmost for the Greater Good.
Pathfinder Shas'ui is Infantry Character. Recon armour pg 70 , pulse carbine pg 66 , photon grenades, markerlight pg Scouts, Supporting Fire pg Jet Pack lnfantry Drone. Pulse Accelerator Drone: Reron Drone: Turre t Mounting Recon Drone only. When a Recon Drone embarks on a Devilfish, it is treated exactly like an embarked passenger, but does not count towards Tran port Capacity. When the Recon Drone is so embarked, the vehicle counts as having a homing beacon and positional relay.
It can transport up to twelve fully armed and armoured Fire Warriors or Pathfinders into battle in relative safety and then provide mobile fire support once they disembark. The highly mechanised Hunter Cadres rely on Devilfish to ensure that their Fire Warriors can travel and deploy quickly to wherever their gunlines are most required. Powered by a complex dual anti-grav and jet-propulsion motive system, the Devilfish seems to glide over a planet's surface.
The anti-grav engines generate a 'cushion' for the Devilfish to float upon, and its armoured bulk is driven forwards by two powerful, multi-directional jet engines.
By pivoting the propulsion units downwards, the Devilfish pilot can gain extra lift to clear obstacles, making the vehicle capable of boosting over obstacles and terrain that mundane tracked vehicles could never hope to traverse. The Devilfish itself is armed with a burst cannon - an ideal weapon to add suppressive fire in defence of any nearby allies. Two Gun Drones are also standard armament, able to lend the Devilfish their weight of fire, or detach on missions of their own.
There are a number of upgrades that can augment the Devilfish, from seeker missiles, for extra power, to defensive options, like decoy launchers or target-shielding disruption pods. Vehicle Tank, Skimmer, Transport. Burst cannon pg 65 , two Gun Drones pg Transport Capacity: Twelve models. Fire Points: Access Points: One on each side and one to the rear. Mobility is essential for any Commander and the Devilfish allows the infantry to keep pace with the armoured gunships. Whether manoeuvring troops to deliver the killer offensive of a Mont'ka, or rushing them into ideal firing positions to ensure a Kauyon ambush is properly set, the Devilfish is often key to victory.
But the Devilfish is not used merely to ferry troops to the battle lines. In addition to the fire of its burst cannon, the Devilfish is on hand to quickly extract troops should enemy formations penetrate too closely. Given the Tau's loathing of close combat, a common tactic is to redeploy their gunlines when enemy units approach too closely, whisking their troops out of harm's way to set up new firing perimeters elsewhere on the battlefield.
This re-embarking and relocating tactic allm' Pathfinders to escape encirclement and helps Fire Warriors to keep their foe at arm's length, better enabling them to whittle down the enemy with repeated volleys of pulse fire. A more aggressive ploy, employed by all septs but made famous by those from Vior'la Sept, is a rapid delivery of Fire Warrior Teams into close range with an enemy target. Although a risky proposition, this allows disembarking units to emerge from their Devilfish to shoot point blank into their foe.
When it works effectively, they drive back or destroy the enemy; however, failure to do so leaves the Tau vulnerable to assaults. These rapid counterattacks are a hallmark of Tau tactics and are often the final stroke in a well-planned Mont'ka. Such ploys are made even more effective by working in conjunction with other elements of the cadre, such as combining with other supporting firepower, coordinating to arrive at the same moment as incoming battlesuits, or having Pathfinders light up the target with markerlights.
It is a towering battlesuit, easily twice the size of the Fire Warrior who wears it. A wonder of Earth caste engineering, only the Tau could master the secrets of producing the dense nanocrystalline alloy that forms the thick protective armour of the XV8.
When it comes to deflecting and withstanding damage, the XV8's armour is comparable to the ceramite used by the Imperium's Space Marines, but weighs substantially less. These powerful thrusters allow the XV8 to vault battlefield obstacles and to make bounding leaps to gain advantageous firing positions, or to avoid incoming shots. By firing off the jets to slow descent, it is possible for a warrior in a XV8 Crisis battlesuit to make a combat drop - arriving to the battlefield suddenly by leaping from an airborne Orca or Manta craft.
While its protective armour and mobility are highly valued by the Tau, it is the ability of the XV8 battlesuit to carry multiple weapons and support systems that makes them so incredibly dangerous and versatile.
Designed to compensate for the recoil of light weapons fire, the XV8 's weapon loadout can be easily altered to reflect mission requirements or the pilot's own personal preference.
Additional upgrades, from multi-tracker fire-control systems, to homing beacons or shield generators, further enhance the fighting abilities of this impressive battlesuit. To the Tau, the battlesuit is more than just a powerful weapon of war; it is also a symbol of great achievement.
Only those Fire Warriors who prove themselves in battle earn the right to wear a battlesuit and bear the name shas'ui. To do so is a great honour, and means the Fire Warrior has passed his Trial by Fire.
This is the aspiration of every Fire caste warrior, recognition of a mastery of the Code of Fire and noble service to the Greater Good. They are an elite force and often form the cutting edge of a Hunter Cadres' attacks; they can be used as a powerful reserve held by the Commander, to counter-attack against advancing foes or to deliver the final hammer blow that is unleashed to break the opposition once and for all.
Trained to operate either alone or, more commonly, in teams of two or three warriors, Crisis Teams can be equipped to handle a variety of battlefield roles. For instance, to combat vast numbers, a Crisis Team might employ many burst cannons, as its high rate of fire is ideal for scything down lightly armoured infantry.
Against more powerful or heavily armoured foes, the ceramite-melting blasts fired from plasma rifles are preferable, while the close-ranged fusion blaster is unrivalled for tank-hunting teams. Different septs have their own preferred weapon and support system fits in accordance with their proscribed tactics. For example, the Crisis Teams from Vior'la have a predilection for what is called the Sun Forge configuration - three XVS Crisis battlesuits operating together in a formation known as a ta 'ro 'cha - 'three minds as one '.
Each member of the Crisis Team is armed with a twin-linked fusion blaster and target lock, a combination that turned an entire Leman Russ tank company into piles of slag during the Tau counter-attacks on Dal'yth. In the dense street fights amidst the ruins of Nimbosa, the T' olku Sept employed a lone warrior in a battlesuit with a flamer, burst cannon and stimulant injector the Lone Hunter configuration , which proved the most effective means of driving the many Imperial Guard regiments out of their defensive barricades.
Those who favour leading from the front, such as serving as the bait in a Kauyon strategy, or as part of the hammer blow in a Mont'ka, greatly increase their own risks. The hot-blooded Commanders of the Vior'la Sept must routinely recruit new bodyguards to replace those lost in battle.
In response to this habitually aggressive approach, the master strategist Commander Puretide, who always preached of the importance of balance, would have repeated his oft-quoted remark: This wisdom recognises that a Commander flanked by two elite shas 'vre warriors in Crisis battlesuit armour is a formidable formation, more than capable of shrugging off enemy shots and dealing out prodigious amounts of firepower.
However, the risk of losing such an important unit must always be weighed. Jet Pack Infantry. Crisis bartlesuit pg Supporting Fire pg 32 , Very Bulky. Sworn Protector: An Independent Character in a unit that contains at least one model with this special rule automatically passes Look Out, Sir attempts.
Only those veteran Fire Warriors with impeccable bartle records who have reached the shas'vre level are considered worthy to serve their commander in such a capacity.
The advancement of the battlesuit has mirrored the mte at which the Tau have expanded across the galaxy. The earliest prototypes were field-tested during the early stages of the First Sphere Axpansion, and although they were successful, the going was slow. The originalfossilfuel-powered T-series was quickly replaced with the V-series, which used fission reaction, although mdiation poisoning was still problematic.
It wasn 't until the end of thatfirst period of mpid growth that battlesuit technology began to regularly appear within the Hunter Cadres. Not surprisingly, it was at these final stages that the Tau won their largest battles, as the elite formations began to refine thei-r tactics to take advantage of what the armoured suits could do.
Crisis Bodyguard Teams are among the most re peered of all Fire caste warriors, for they embody the philosophy of striving for the Greater Good. It is their duty to protect their Commander at all costs; they will even take incoming shots intended for their leader.
Should it be necessary, an XVS Crisis Bodyguard will sacrifice his own life in order to spare his Commander from certain death. It is considered a great disgrace for a Bodyguard to survive whilst his leader is slain; any who suffer such indignity often spend their remaining lifetime atoning for that which can ultimately have no forgiveness.
By the start of the Second Sphere Expansion, great strides had been made in battlesuit design, pa-rticularly in the areas of power sources and increased weapon loadouts. By the end of this period, the -repuls01'jump jets came into theiT own and the Hunter Cad-res were conquering planets at a mte never before seen. At present, the battlesuit has never been more successful, and continual upgrades, different marks and variants, as well as new prototypes are continually being developed.
The secondary weapon - a smart missile tank-killers of legendary proportions. Deadly in its own right, the smart missile system can fire off Powered by a particle accelerator, a Broadside's heavy a barrage at any target within sensor range, even those in rail rifle shot can penetrate the thickest plasteel bunkers, cover or hidden out of sight.
While the weapon carried by the T hose races that have faced the Tau in battle have grown to XVSS Broadside is not as massive as the railgun mounted fear these heavily armoured battlesuits. During the Damocles on the Hammerhead, its range and destructive power are Crusade, the XVSS Broadside was quickly identified by the impressive nonetheless. In order to mount the twin-linked Imperium as a major threat to armoured vehicles, whose heavy rail rifle on a battlesuit, the Earth caste engineers had soldiers learned to dread the whip-crack sound made by the to modifY the XVS battlesuit.
Due to the increased weight hypeHonic speed of a heavy rail rifle round; the distinct of its weapon system, the XVS's jet pack had to be removed, noise could only actually be heard after the shot had already meaning the XVSS Broadside would trade its mobility and hit home. In open terrain, like on Taros or the ice plains of manoeuvrability in favour of increased weapon power and Issenheim, a few Broadside Teams were sufficient to negate range.
In prototype production, it was quickly noticed that entire tank companies, quickly turning them into smoking the new battlesuit could not avoid incoming fire, so further wreckage. In the battles against the Tyranid Hive Fleet Gorgon, protective armour was added. The Star Phantoms , Libators , and new Black Templar Primaris marines join the crusade to purge ork pirates and chaos renegades. The crusade also recovers a lost knight STC from the forces of chaos. Salamanders [ edit ] The Salamanders deploy at full Chapter strength to fight against the invasion of a hive world by the Bloodthirster Khar'kul.
Their new Aggressor squads equipped with flamers, of course prove to be the key to victory. The Salamanders soon become well-known for their effective use of Aggressors. While it is stated that the Salamanders have never been confirmed to have any successor chapters, it is also suggested that some chapters such as the Black Dragons and the Storm Giants may have been descended from them.
A couple of tweaks have been made to the circumstances behind Vulkan's disappearance in order to reconcile the old fluff with the revelations made in the Horus Heresy and War of the Beast novels; the new story is that according to the Salamanders Vulkan led them for about a millennium after the Horus Heresy i.
The Chapter's persistently low numbers have been retconned; they now keep 7 companies as a homage to the 7 warrior-houses of their old Legion; while each one is larger than a Codex-compliant Company, their Scout company is said to be less than half the size it would be in other chapters due to Nocturne's small population and an especially meticulous selection process. Following his decree, three orders of the Sisters of Battle attack five of the Chapter's companies on the world of New Folly alongside numerous fanatics.
The Salamanders fought only in self-defense, and when news of Perigno's execution by the Inquisition arrived the Ecclesiarchal forces disbanded.
Raven Guard [ edit ] A Chapter-strength strike force spearheaded by a mix of Inceptors, Grav-chute equipped Reivers, and Thunderhawk -deployed Assault Marines led by Kayvaan Shrike is able to liberate the mining world of Safinyius mere weeks after it is captured by the Night Lords. The ensuing defense quickly becomes the largest armor battle since the Battle of Tallarn, but the overwhelming firepower of the Iron Hands' mobile fortresses ensures their victory.
Afterwards, the Iron Hands launch a scorched-earth campaign that leaves many of the nearby worlds ruined but free of Chaos taint. They manage to discover a possible pathway through the Great Rift and defeat the Chaos forces defending it, but the fleeing renegades destroy the portals used to sustain the pathway before the Iron Hands can secure it.
Crimson Fists [ edit ] The Crimson Fists were able to receive much-needed Primaris reinforcements during the Indomitus Crusade after Guilliman drove off the forces of the Daemon Prince Rhaxos from Rynn's World, marvelling when they learned that many of them had lived while their Primarch still led them.
As a show of gratitude for Guilliman's role in restoring their Chapter to its full strength, the Crimson Fists have since named the day in which they were united with their Primaris counterparts as the "Day of Renewal". Guilliman personally praised Pedro Kantor for his services to the Imperium, remarking that Rogal Dorn would have been proud of him. Space Wolves[ edit ] When the Codex Astartes was first introduced, Leman Russ somehow managed to convince Roboute Guilliman to let them retain their traditional structure.
Despite the return of the 13th Company, their name-stone remains blank as a symbol of all the Great Companies that have been lost throughout the history of the Space Wolves. Unsurprisingly, there was some grumbling among some of the Space Wolves upon whether or not their Primaris cousins should be allowed to be a part of the Great Companies; since they were not born on Fenris and did not know of the Space Wolves' customs, some Wolf Lords believed them to be part of a ploy to undermine their traditions.
Grimnar ultimately decides that they will follow the will of Guilliman and accept them, though rivalries between the Primaris Space Wolves and their shorter cousins are still common. Subsequently, many Primaris Space Wolves agree to take the Test of Morkai to prove themselves worthy of being called sons of Russ.
Not all of those who take the test survive it. Ulrik the Slayer proposes that the cure to the Curse of the Wulfen might be found within the Primaris Space Wolves, but when several Inceptor packs give into bestial fury while fighting Dark Eldar it becomes clear that this is not the case.
The Rune Priests' visions hint more and more frequently that the Wolftime is drawing nearer than ever before. Njall Stormcaller is granted an audience with Bjorn; rumor has it that he sought to know every detail of the days leading up to Russ's departure.
Wulfen Dreadnoughts are exactly what you'd think- they're Wulfen in Dreadnoughts. Lukas the Trickster once made a bet with Krom Dragongaze that he couldn't outstare the sun. Several hours of staring into the sun later, Krom declared the bet to be a draw when the sun went down that evening. He is blind in one eye to this day.
Other Codex Chapters[ edit ] The Blood Ravens get their own entry in the "Unknown Foundings" section of the Codex, coincidentally confirming that they've been "gifted" a handful of Primaris Marines.
It is suggested that the Ordo Malleus may know who their Primogenitor chapter is, but the records that they have are sealed. At one point in the past, two Space Marine Chapters ended up being formed with identical names and heraldries the Celestial Swords. In true Administratum fashion, the mistake wasn't discovered until both of the Chapters were wiped out by the 9th Black Crusade years later.
Though it is again noted that the Indomitus Crusade was unable to liberate or even reach many of the planets that had fallen in the Noctis Aeterna, the equally important point is made that it gave the Imperium as a whole hope that it could survive its darkest era since the Horus Heresy. The Black Consuls , formerly presumed to be all but destroyed, have been rebuilt by an influx of Primaris Marines, as have the Scythes of the Emperor.
The Black Dragons were about to be investigated by the Inquisition again, but it was called off when the Great Rift formed. The Minotaurs are forced to make for Terra after a Death Guard attack ruins their gene-seed stocks.
Grey Knights [ edit ] A few of the Grey Knights' weapons were derived from xenos technology, the product of secret pacts made with the alien in order to combat the more pressing foe of the Daemon. But before you get any ideas, these were alliances of convenience that have likely long since ended. Among other things, this means they have a hidden stockpile of tesseract labryniths that they use to trap the essence of particularly nasty Daemons.
Trazyn would be proud. Some Chapters most notably the Exorcists and Silver Skulls have been known to notify the Grey Knights about potential candidates for recruitment within their own pools of Aspirants. The Grey Knights responsible for finding recruits are called the Gatherers, and they consist of Grey Knights who are too old or injured to take part in battle.
Which makes no sense given current fluff states Astartes are functionally immortal and so aren't actually capable of being too old to fight. There are exceptions such as the man Sigismund himself! In either case, they're a lot like the Custodians' Eyes of the Emperor. They are especially active during the Plague Wars in Ultramar. Kaldor Draigo notices that his appearances in realspace are occurring more frequently and lasting for longer periods of time; the Prognosticars believe that this may be a byproduct of the Great Rift weakening the veil between the Materium and the Warp, or perhaps it is a side-effect of Mortarion's return to the Materium.
In either case, Draigo is prepared for a second round with the Daemon Primarch and we can only wonder what kind of new scar tattoo he's going to give Mortarion again. Due to the increasingly desperate state of the Imperium, Draigo has asked the other Grand Masters to consider executing the Terminus Decree a.
Grey Knight Chaplains serve to ensure the purity of the Chapter, and are drawn from the very purest of the Paladins. The War of The Beast is re-confirmed as the origin of the Deathwatch. Basic overview of a Watch Fortress's chain of command, along with heraldry and brief descriptions of famous Watch Fortresses.
Kill-Teams are classified based on their specialties: Aquila Kill-Teams are generalists, able to adapt to any situation within a moment's notice.
Venator Kill-Teams balance speed and firepower to counter swift xenos units. Malleus Kill-Teams focus on killing monsters and destroying vehicles, often with the aid of Terminator armor and heavy weapons.
Furor Kill-Teams are swarm-slayers which kill off hordes of xenos from afar. Purgatus Kill-Teams are tasked with assassinating enemy commanders and are frequently assisted by Librarians. Dominatus Kill-Teams study the elite forces of their enemies, then outfit themselves accordingly to counter them. Fortis Kill-Teams are a recent addition that focuses on combining the different specialties of Primaris Marines into a cohesive whole.
After learning of the Deathwatch's losses following the Great Rift's appearance, Roboute Guilliman passes the Ultimaris Decree, which grants them the use of several Chapters' worth of Primaris Space Marines. Chaplain Cassius' involvement in the events of Deathwatch: Overkill gets brought up. Adeptus Mechanicus [ edit ] A couple of more exotic Tech Priest titles are given away, though it's anyone's guess what the hell half of them even do. But with charming names like "Data-Predator", "Grand Parasite", and "Mechasapient", perhaps it's best that we don't know.
Agripinaa has adapted to the fall of Cadia by "recruiting" any nearby refugee ships to the Skitarii- turning them into servitors if they don't join willingly. Metalica is badly besieged by the Death Guard and its allies; only the intervention of House Raven and a war-fleet from Deimos is able to push back the traitors. The AdMech have increasingly come into conflict with the Necrons since Cawl began work on reverse-engineering the Cadian Pylons.
Their study into the strange material they have named Blackstone hey, haven't we heard that name before? Worse, approximately half of all known Forge Worlds have turned out to be inactive Tomb Worlds that are now in the process of reawakening. The Thanatar, Castellax, and Vorax Battle-Automata were mothballed after the Heresy, with more orthodox members of the AdMech believing that their machine spirits were too close to Silica Animus to be used safely.
Belisarius Cawl originally learned much of what he knows about gene-crafting from the Emperor Himself, back when he was still helping Emps design the Black Carapace.
It was that expertise that helped him design the Primaris Marines, even though he has long since forgotten how he learned it in the first place. At least 7 Forge Worlds are lost during the Noctis Aeterna, with several others not having been heard from in some time. Tigrus is now a Forge World again, despite having been totally controlled by Orks for thousands of years prior.
Orestes is now a Knight World. These are probably a case of GW having Alzheimer's. Partly because of the large amounts of archaeotech they've been hoarding that even Mars doesn't have access to. Astra Militarum [ edit ] A Militarum Regimentum is the Administratum term for all Regiments derived from a single planet. Brief overviews of a bunch of minor Regiments.
The Tanith First And Only get a mention as well. New Regiments include: The Ventrillian Nobles, who "donate" their wealth to Munitorum officials and Rogue Traders to ensure they can be deployed to only the most glorious and adventure-filled warzones.
They carry swords as well as lasguns and have a bunch of super-heavy tanks that they get from the AdMech in exchange for the rare gemstones only found on Ventrillia. They're most often deployed on the front lines, partly to burn a path forward for their allies and partly because said allies find that the smell of their world's gases is intolerable. The Indigan Praefects, expert beast hunters who learned how to fight big nasty monsters after their planetary governor's prized collection of dangerous predators from across the Segmentum escaped to breed in the wild.
Since then, they've become some of the Guard's best Tyranid fighters. Cadian Shock Troopers [ edit ] After the fall of their homeworld, those who survived the battle then reinforced the other worlds within the Cadian Gate and manage to hold back the tide of Daemons and Traitor Marines when the great rift appeared. Tau are not classless, having a rigid Caste and Rank system that while does not impose any stigma on being of a lesser rank while preaching equality, is far from equal. He is placed where the Empire wants him, then inconspicuously and subtly forced to submit.
The Tau community does not control the Empire's property or distribution of wealth, again having a rigid Caste system and government-placed jobs based on the needs of the Empire and abilities of the individual.
If anyone has control of the Tau's property and wealth, it is the High Councils and the Aun who distribute it "equally" amongst the public. In addition, full Socialism would not work without extensive implementation of Democracy - another little system of government that the Tau do not seem to fully grasp. Only the High Councils and the Aun have any say in how the Empire progresses. So what are they, you ask?
I strongly believe that the Tau Empire has much more in common with the concepts of Imperialistic Utilitarianism , a rather vague but overall more fitting explanation or description for how the Tau run things rather than an even more vague and irrelevant socio-economic system, considering the fluff still hasn't provided any information regarding a Tau economic system at all.
Utilitarianism , being the ethical doctrine that the moral worth of an action is determined solely by its contribution to overall utility.
Utility, being the "good to be maximized" sound familiar? Tau Empire Codex pg. The principle of the Tau'va - the Greater Good - drives them ever outwards from their homeworld, into the great unknown of space. Those that remain openly defiant face obliteration under the orbital guns of the Air Caste fleet.
The Tau Empire encompasses a dense yet astrographically small area of space. The empire now encompasses over twenty septs - fully developed Tau systems - and a large number of vassal alien homeworlds.
The populations of these worlds are fully integrated in to the empire, each striving towards the Greater Good. In a manner of speaking, yes, but don't look at it from a human perspective. Separate yourself from the idea that "all men are created equal" and forget you ever learned about the concepts of freedom and democracy, and you can see that being a despotic society isn't necessarily an "evil" thing at all when implemented in the way that the Tau implement it.
Being a Despotic society seems to be one of the only ways to make what the Tau Empire does, work. No so-called "ethical", "moral", or "free" individual in their humanly right mind would want to willingly give up that freedom or individuality to exercise the type of Utilitarianism that the Tau Empire practices daily - they'd have to be subtly forced or coerced into doing it, as we know the Ethereals do through the fear of returning to the Mont'au. Of course, the Tau implement so many of these systems across the various Sept worlds that comprise the Empire that it is a Checks and Balances system in its own, ensuring no one Tau can ultimately control every aspect of the entire Empire, but it's speculated that Aun'va could come dangerously close to it.
This is likely simply due to the fact that he is said to be the oldest and wisest Ethereal, so many Tau would believe that there wouldn't be anything wrong with his council, suggestions, or declarations and wouldn't bother to oppose him, even if they could.