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Tau Commerce Protection Fleet (Fan Made)

Tau Commerce Protection Fleet (Fan Made)

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Published by Spammalott

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Published by: Spammalott on Jun 04, 2012
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Version 17th March 2006
This document presents rules for using the resin Tau starship models produced by Forgeworld
in games of Battleeet Gothic, which are collectively known as the Commerce ProtectionFleet. Whilst a set of rules for these vessels is included in the Taros Campaign book, no ofcialrules are available at the time of writing. The rules presented here are all unofcial and shouldonly be used with the consent of your opponent. Those wishing to enter the Forgeworld eet intournaments are advised to use the Tau eet list from the Armada supplement, with each Forge
world model ‘counting as’ its closest equivalent in the original eet. Having said this, we hopethat you make use of these rules in friendly games, and would greatly appreciate any playtest
ing feedback that you are willing to contribute on the Specialist Games forums or elsewhere.
Inception of the CPFEvolution of the CPF
Fleet rules
CustodianProtector and EmissaryCastellan and Warden
Orbital defences
Courier and MerchantQath’fannor eet listIleath’fannor eet list
Written by :
Andrew Park (Shinnentai) with the exception of the quote on page 5 and the ction on page 7 both contributed by Gary Carney (Nerroth).
Art by :
Andrew Park with the exception of the pieceon this page contributed by Sebastian Stuart(Shas’el Tael).
Rules compiled by :
Frank O’Hanlon (Xisor).Since much of the content of this list has comefrom the series of conversations to be found onthe Specialist Games forum, we would be remissin not acknowledging those that have contrib
-uted to them. Whilst the list does not represent
the views of all these people, and every one of them could likely nd at least one stat that theywould prefer changed, we have at least attempt
ed to walk the ne line between popular opinionand what we judge to be right. Hopefully not too
many of the following are disappointed:
Artanic, Blackhorizon, Bladed Thesis, Brother-Captain Augustine, Burzum, Data, Dectilion,Eldanesh, ForbiddenKnowledge, Icon-Of-Sin,Ishoog, Jesper_Asmussen, Juracan, KCKitsune,Kor_O_Bob, LordDemon, Magus, Marcius,Morghum the everthirster, Nerroth, Nightstalk 
er, Other Dave, Patriarch, Raysokuk, RedDevil,Scatterlaser, Seawolf, Sephiroth, ShogunTau,Sigoroth, Soulstone, SqurielLord, Stormbringer,Sylvain, TahiriRocks, Taustar, Tygon, Ubik_ lives, Unseelied, Wargamer, Warmonkey, Xisor.
891011. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .
The origins of the Commerce Protection Fleet ( or Qath’fannor to the Tau ) date back to the early 42nd mil-lennium, by which time the Emissary class had enteredinto widespread use across an emergent Tau Empire. TheEmissary itself utilised a unique hull design, better con-forming to the wing shape created by the Gravitic Drive.This had the effect of increasing the duration of warp-divethat the Emissary was able to sustain, an attribute whichwas to be of great use in the Emissary’s primary role asa diplomatic vessel, forming trade relations and allianceswith those species inhabiting systems neighbouring Tauspace.An end to the Emissary’s primarily passive role was tocome when a vital medical supply convoy on its way toa viral outbreak on T’olku was attacked by Ork raiders.Despite the particularly heavy escort assigned to it, theconvoy commander realised that it was only a matter of time before the Orks gathered in enough strength to over-whelm the convoy entirely, and dispatched his Messenger to the nearby Sept world of N’dras for aid.Arriving in-system, the Messenger immediately relayednews of the impending disaster to the Kor’vattra in orbitaround N’dras. Amongst them was Kor’el Nem’sha andher command of four Emissaries. Realising that the Emis-saries were the only vessels capable of reaching the be-leaguered convoy in time, the young Kor’el immediatelyvolunteered to defend it until the Kor’O commanding the
 N’dras eet could reinforce her with his more heavily
armed Merchants and Explorers. Nem’sha’s Emissaries proved to be the salvation of theconvoy, their arrival heralded by an immediate salvoof missiles crippling the Ork Kroozer leading the raid.
Through the intense ghting that followed, the Emissaries
were able to link with the remnants of the convoy’s escortand hold off the still-determined Orks until the rest of the
 N’dras eet appeared to scatter the raiders before them.
The Tau did not achieve such a victory without cost how-ever. In addition to most of the convoy’s escort beingdestroyed, one of the Emissaries was also left a twistedwreck, with a second so badly damaged that it had to beabandoned and scuttled. Most importantly, a convoy ves-sel had been boarded, with Kor’el Nem’sha forced to or-der it destroyed rather than let it fall into the hands of theOrks. Still, enough inoculations reached T’olku to haltthe progress of the virus, saving many thousands of Taulives in the process.The swift intervention of the Emissaries was widelyacknowledged as the single greatest factor contributingto this success, and so the Commerce Protection Forcewas created with the newly promoted Kor’O Nem’shacommanding it. Consisting as it did of Emissary crews – always chosen for their ability to improvise when their 
far-ung missions left them isolated from any form of support, the edgling Qath’fannor soon came to be re
-garded as one of the most forward thinking elements of the entire Kor’vattra.Kor’O Nem’sha actively encouraged such radical think-
ing amongst her ofcers, leading by example in assigning
Fire Warrior Strike Teams to every Emissary under her command. Still distraught over her part in the destructionof the T’olku convoy vessel, Nem’sha placed the require-ment of having the strike teams be able to retake capturedconvoy vessels. Responding to this, her liaison in the Firecaste implemented a new training regimen amongst theQath’fannor Fire Warriors, which when combined withspecialist boarding pods developed by the Earth caste,enabled them to successfully undertake boarding opera-tions.Such co-operation between the Castes has characterisedthe development of the Qath’fannor under the leadershipof Kor’O Nem’sha and that of her successors. Inspired bythe example set by Kor’O Khas’a’tah, the Fire caste was
fully integrated into the command structure of the eet,with hunter cadres permanently attached to specic ves
-sels. Such measures, when combined with improvementsto the Emissary itself such as the addition of grav-hooksto tow Orca gunships, enabled the Commerce ProtectionForce to dramatically decrease the amount of shippinglost to raiders.Even in this formative state, the Qath’fannor was not en-tirely restricted to anti-piracy operations. When the need presented itself, the Emissaries of the Commerce Protec-
tion Fleet also participated in full eet engagements, such
as its part in the Damocles Gulf Crusade of 742.M41.
With an Imperial eet discovered penetrating into Tau
space, all available Emissaries within range were formed
up and tasked with ghting a delaying action in order for the Tau eet to gather in sufcient numbers to pre
-vent the intruders from reaching the major Sept world of Dal’yth.
It was in the Hydass system that the Emissary eet rst
clashed with the ships at the spearhead of the Imperialcrusade. However, it soon became apparent that the lightcruisers were no match for their Imperial opponents, asthe Tau were forced to withdraw with the loss of an Emis-
sary and several Orcas, with much of the rest of the eet
suffering damage. Swift to adapt, the Emissaries still in
a condition to ght adopted the hit-and-fade tactics com
-monly employed against them in the past by commerceraiders, striking at the vulnerable crusade transports and
slowing the advance of the Imperial eet.
 Not to be deterred from its objective, the Crusade soonarrived in the Tau held Sy’l’kell system. Here rather thanneedlessly engaging the superior Imperial forces, the re-maining Emissaries had instead successfully evacuatedas many Tau personnel as possible in the knowledge of the ambush awaiting their enemy in the Pra’yen system.
Thanks to the actions of the Emissary eet, there the Tau
had been able to gather their heavier ships and install newweapons systems on the orbital station that would proveto be a formidable obstacle to the invaders.
With the experience gained during the Damocles Gulf Crusade, the Qath’fannor developed the hit and runmanoeuvres they had deployed there, and turned themagainst Imperial convoys operating on the borders of Tauspace. This proved to be of limited success, both due tothe Qath’fannor’s ongoing commitments to protectingthe Tau shipping lanes, and the limitations of the Emis-sary as a combat vessel.With the settlement and subsequent defence of newworlds prioritised by the Tau, few resources could bespared from expanding the bulk of the Kor’vattra, withall but a few facilities being given over to the produc-
tion of the Hero class or retting the older Merchants and
Explorers already in service. Hence it was only with thewaning years of the 42nd millennium that the Qath’fannor received a new vessel in the form of the Protector.The Protector was designed to replace the Emissary in
the role of commerce raider, where the intense repow
er it was able to bring to bear would enable it to inict
heavy damage on convoys before reinforcements could be mustered to come to their aid. Larger than the Emis-sary, the Protector had stores and munitions enough for 
long patrols, inltrating deep into Imperial space whilst
 preying on mercantile shipping. Crucially, the Protector’shull was designed around similar principles to that of theEmissary, which whilst compromising its durability, alsogave it the superior warp-dive capabilities integral to thesuccess of its role.As production of the Protectors continued, the Qath’fannor was able to assign increasingly large groups of ships tomore important and heavily defended targets. As the in-tensity of these engagements grew, so too did the need
for heavier ships to take the brunt of the ghting. The
Hero class was found to be ideal in this role, and it be-came common practice for Qath’fannor battle groups to be accompanied by these vessels, though they limited
the effective warp-dive range of the eet. Eventually the
Qath’fannor was permanently equipped with Heroes,either newly built and crewed with Qath’fannor person-nel, or assigned from their previous commands and their crews retrained in Qath’fannor combat doctrine.
With this genesis of the Qath’fannor as a fully edgedeet in its own right, design of the Custodian class be
-gan, envisaged to co-ordinate the various components of a Qath’fannor battle-group and allow it to outmanoeuvre
its opponents. Massing almost as much as the Explorer,
and yet able to match the warp-dive speed of the Emis-sary and Protector, the Custodian suffered from a lengthy
development period, the rst example of the class even
-tually only launching following technical aid from theDemiurg.With the Custodian project team still struggling with theintricacies of its design, other teams were tasked withcreating a pair of escorts to complement the cruisers al-
ready in service with the Qath’fannor. The rst of these
was the Castellan class, intended to provide close escortfor the larger vessels and accompany the Protector in itsraiding operations. The second was the Warden, an un-compromisingly aggressive gunship well suited to the broader purpose of the newly re-organised Qath’fannor : undertaking any operations that would damage the en-emies of the Tau to an extent disproportionate with thesize of force used by the Qath’fannor in engaging them.Whilst necessity often requires the intervention of Qath’fannor battle-groups in defending Tau held planets,they are rarely used in such a static role permanently. In-stead, each battle-group ( consisting of a Custodian andvarious capital ships with attendant escorts and supportvessels ) is stationed over a Sept world where it is de- ployed in its entirety or in smaller task-forces as the situ-ation dictates, commonly returning once it has achievedits objective, ready to be redeployed. In particularly vi-tal missions, the Tau are known to utilise two or moreQath’fannor battle-groups to achieve their objectives,although where such large forces are required, it is morelikely that a single battle-group will provide the spear-
head element for the bulk of the Tau eet.

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