It’s the name of my Hamachi network where Will and I have many a warlike adventure. Lately, it’s been Imperial Guard (Will) and I went back to playing Tau Empire. They’re just so much fun. In our most recent bout, I had Krootox aplenty and then the Knarloc Alpha Rider came out and it was demolishville. That’s 1400R. So I move on his position at 9:30, which is kinda early, but then, was I going to go melee and then wait around for his tanks to come out? I go melee, I get in your face a lot sooner than if I was waiting around for tier 3 ranged. Just to clarify:

Tier 2 Melee = 270R/270P

Tier 2 Ranged = 340R/340P

Tier 3 Melee = 380R/380P

Tier 3 Ranged = 510R/510P

I save 200R/200P and those melee totals just get there faster than the ranged ones do. In other words, I end up waiting for longer periods before I can build the ranged tier. I know the difference is only 200, but it’s A LOT faster to go melee. I am in tier 3 sooner, which is nice because I can buy up the economic upgrades pretty fast, and in succession. By deeply funding my economy, I can afford to dispense a Greater Knarloc AND A Knarloc Alpha Rider in the same game, having queued the Greater Knarlocs. It’s kinda silly to make them run, but I like seeing them do it. And they lumber around so ponderously slow if you don’t. It’s like repairing buildings. You have to stay on top of run and repair, otherwise, they’re useless.

I’ve been skirmishing with a Harder Dark Eldar… and I’m losing more than I’m winning. If I leave them alone, they overpower me with great sums of very annoying skimmers. I must have built 25 Barracudas trying to keep up with their never ending stream of vehicles, and really really buff Mandrakes. Lots and lost of Mandrakes. It got to the point that on Faceoff, they were just, entrenched in my base, killing every infantry unit or ground unit of any kind, ever time I got one built. It was HOPELESS… because they were destroying my shit by the 4:00 mark and I was economically crippled for the entirety of the match. Like I said, 25 or more Barracudas couldn’t get it done… and I can’t get anything that moves on the ground to survive for more than a few seconds… I sure hope Barracudas will get me there. Dark Eldar have a vicious AI which strikes first things first with a fully reenforced squad of Hellions. And there goes my unupgraded outmost listening post. Fuck.

So I’m not sure why I’ve subjected myself to endless rounds with the Dark Eldar. I’ve proven on several separate occasions now, that I can’t win on Faceoff. And I’m struggling most other places. On Fallen CIty, I won, but BOY did I give it the full swing of the bat. I had like 8 Krootox all down there, and the fucking AI built 2.5 bases for fuck’s sake! I destroyed 48 buildings that game. 48!!!

I’m game for a challenge. The only other AI that gives me any sort of hard time is Chaos Space Marines, and they have eaten shit more often than not. They just don’t get going fast enough, IMHO.

Though, Will is pretty damn fast with them, and very good. I have a feeling we are competitive on a wide-scale level. How could we not be? We don’t play the game as viciously as some, but those aren’t the people we want to be playing with anyway, right? People obsessed with winning, or hellbent on it, are frustrating themselves with a lot of unnecessary anguish. I’m good, and I lose all the time. But I play a ton of games. Maybe thousands. Will and I trade wins and losses, and I honestly think that the time I spent unemployed and playing this game a ton gave me a huge advantage over everyone. I have spent TIME making my sequence as good as it can be, as fast as I can get it to be, as deadly, as decisive. I find that I win at least twice as much as I lose, so I’m not doing it wrong, I’m getting it. I might even pose a 3:1 ratio, and think myself perhaps somewhere between the two.

Tau Empire have two distinct sides, and choosing either, or both, can make each new game a totally original challenge, posed by an exponentially increasing sum of possibilities, multiplying rapidly. I’ve never played the same game, and been all like: dude, I JUST did that. WTF?

Honestly, I don’t decide what direction I’m going until the first 5 minutes or so. I mean, I have to pick either a melee barracks or a ranged one at the start, but I can just build the other one if I decide to go the other way. It’s not rocket science.  It’s paying for both tier buildings that gets to be a chore. And to have your tech tiers destroyed is no fun either. Really, don’t let that happen with Tau. Just don’t.

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