Vas'Quez Tau
The Tau Of Vas'Quez 4

     RailGunner Squad Ice In Summer

Technically they are Pathfinders. They know this. They know that their job is to carry Pulse Carbines to pin the enemy while shining Markerlights all over the place for others to use to guide their shooting.

But the troopers of Ice In Spring (like their compatriot squad Ice In Summer) are all Gun Nuts. They loves them the Rail Rifles. They loves them plenty.

It is everything that the poor experimental A.I. Commander Drone 'Gigo Fubar' can do to deal with these irrational Tau. They sleep with their rail rifles, holding them tight like lovers. They spend most of their free time polishing their rail rifles. Ask them how they are today, and they will tell you about the status of their rail rifle.

Gigo Fubar has big shoes to fill, even though the hovering Command Drone has no feet - it is the first of it's kind, to lead living Tau as a superior officer. This experiment in the advancement of artificial intelligence is not one welcomed by most Tau, but fortunately, as long as Gigo agrees that 'Rail Rifles Are Just The Best!!!', this is one group of organics that are willing to accept command by a machine person.

And Gigo Fubar, like the rest of the experimental Drones of Vas'Quez 4, does feel like a person. He was programmed that way, after all.

The only thing Ice In Summer like better than polishing their rail rifles is shooting them, and among all of the Vas'Quez 4 force, they alone are eager and happy when trouble starts.

After all, it is another chance to prove that rail rifles rule.

About the Miniatures:

A rail rifle Pathfinder is the first 40K miniature I ever purchased and painted. I really liked these figures, and linear acceleration weapons are just plain interesting. I once saw one demonstrated in my high school; some of the cleverer students in the engineering classes had built one. It shot a big hole in a massive chunk of concrete, and it did so with but a whisper... and no moving parts.

The most interesting model of my Rail Gunners is my lone female Pathfinder, who I constructed with her helmet off, placed on a nearby rock. I hand sculpted her head, trying to make rounder features than the typical Tau, so that she would look... female.

The idea of having one Pathfinder team led by an experimental Drone that 'counts as' a commander came from my local shop being out of any Pathfinder Commander models. However, in retrospect, I like it better. It is more interesting and colorful than just having another stock appropriate model, and it fits my theme of the Vas'Quez mission being a grab bag of misfits and experiments that no other Tau force would ever put up with. Gigo Fubar adds a little something extra, I think.

My second Squad, Ice In Spring is identical to Ice in Summer save that the commander is a normal Pathfinder Commander model.  Shas'Ui Cloud Mountain is there, but not as colorful as Gigo Fubar... but good as a contrast between the two teams.


About the Army Card:

Grenades are really mandatory, to me, for Tau. The Tau just plain suck at melee, and need every advantage they can get, especially against being assaulted.

My biggest beef is that in order to use Pathfinders at all, the rules demand that I include a Devilfish transport in my army... which I would never want to use for my Pathfinders. It is a bothersome and arbitrary rule which I do think exists only to sell more Devilfish models. I am fortunate in that the way I choose to save money, in buying a discounted box set, included a Devilfish as part of the set.

The worst bit of all, though, is that I can only have ONE Pathfinder team per Devilfish  I own. I have to have a tank for each and every Pathfinder team. This means that I can only use one of my two teams, pretty much ever, because I don't see myself buying a second Devilfish, just to satisfy this stupid, ridiculous rule. I mean, think about it... A Devilfish can hold 12 Fire Warriors and their weapons with ease, but if those guys are called 'Pathfinders', then suddenly only four will fit, and they won't even come out to fight unless they have a guaranteed ride waiting for them - even if they never use it once, ever.

I submit the Devilfish Pathfinder rule as the most arbitrary and idiotic rule in all of W40K.

Still, I really wanted to have rail gunners in my army, and they have proven their worth.

On several occasions, these gun nuts have managed to blow away far distant and very dangerous individual enemy commanders and figures, ones that no other unit could touch.

I like my Railgunner... Pathfinder... teams.

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