I’ve had a few more bouts with good Sir Will, and Tau have lost one, but remain in firm control of 3 others. Once ineffective Barracudas were done away with, I graduated to Hammerhead Gunships, XV89 Bodyguards and similar battlesuit class squadrons. I have him puzzled, at the moment, as most of my late game pulse weapons get outstandingly good later on through the tech tiers. By the time the XV8 Sunfire Battlesuits are out, the thing is leaning heavily to my direction. Recent bouts have belong to Will early in the game, as some of his tier 1 and tier 0 stuff is better than mine. But recently, lack of continued offensive pressure and riding one good wave of troops into my base does not always cinch the deal. I was able to repel him from the center of my base, as I was losing production buildings, and forced him back into his base, and beat him there. Battlesuits carried my last two victories, easily. I haven’t even built the really nasty ones yet.
But either way, this clearly presents a challenge which must have a solution of some form. Those battlesuits have a weakness, and I’m willing to bet an equivalent tier melee unit would go to work on them. Even in this last round, I continued to build units deep into tier 3, and only really cranked production on Hammerheads and XV8s. These recent campaigns have left him with no answer to the Sunfire Battlesuit, and my army has largely consisted of them with the various anti-infantry or anti-structure upgrades. They dispense a good deal of firepower and last a really long time in heated battle. They are uncompromisingly rad. And Hammerheads have 4 upgrade options for the main gun, all of which can work to eliminate vehicles, structures or infantry. I could tell he was feeling frustrated in the end, but that’s the way it goes when you’re beating your head against a strategy that won’t work in the execution stage. The planning stage might be done with, but something is not translating from conceptualization to actualization. I imagine he will figure out how to stop those XV8s soon enough. I may have to lean on the Swordfish Gunship more than I already do as the lynchpin of my army.
All in all, I’ve been able to come back from NEAR the brink of destruction, and win. My record with Tau Empire at 6-1 (85.7%). I find I’ve been adapting my existing build order quite a bit to fit the nature and peculiarity of my foe’s choices. I don’t know if Chaos can keep up with Tau in tier 3, so far, he’s put some tier 3 things against my Hammerheads and lost them all. I have heard complaints as to their ineffectiveness. But everything in this game is about those little unit on unit matchups, and what kinds of damage they do, and so on. Sometimes an otherwise useless unit might be the perfect counter to early aircraft, or some other strategy.
Conclusion: things are going to change day to day, as we get more of these matchups under our belts. For the longest time, I have gone on periods of having no answer for some of Will’s tactics. Whereas, sometimes he has gone on for periods not knowing how to get the better of mine. I will need to keep my actions and objectives fluid in order to stay at that impressive 7 game average.