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Tau Online Newsletter

Mini of the Month

Gareth's Whirldwind

Gareth's Blood Angel Whirlwind . Check our forums for more information.

Quote of the Month

"These Gue'la believe such silly things... they believe 'Daemons' live in an alternate reality, and wait to consume their souls. They believe that their 'God-Emperor', who lives upon Terra, judges their souls when they die. They believe that praying to their equipment makes them work more efficiently, and that faith alone can stop bullets. What's next, a fat man in a red suit comes down the chimney and hands out presents?"

- Por'La Au'taal Al'ro

Member Quote of the Month

"No true Ork would touch Belgian Chocolates"

- Kangaroo Joe, Orks, What in Gork and Mork's name do Ork's eat?

Forum Statistics

For the month of December:

New Topics: 1,623
New Posts: 22,918
New Members: 198
Page Views: 941,532
Most Members Online at Same Time: 146

In Total:

Topics: 33,126
Posts: 517,109
Members: 5,014
Most Members Online at Same Time: 175

Thanks for Reading

The 25th Monthly Tau Online Newsletter is here!
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Recent News

Website News

Just a quick note to all: We hope you enjoyed your Christmas, and have a great, happy New Year!

If you tried accessing Tau Online on the 31st of December, you may have noticed that we were down for much of the day. This was because our old website host ( are closing down, and as such we had to move to a new host (ASmallOrange.Com). Things were fixed later that night...

However soon after this host move was complete, the domain '' crashed, resulting in Tau Online being in-accessible for 6 days. Things are now back-up and running normally, sorry for the inconvenience however. Please let your friends know that Tau Online is running normally again if they don't already know.

As we continue our quest for global domination to continuing to grow bigger as a site, we ask that we continue to help us out by submitting your work to us, and giving us your comments and suggestion (if any).

Forum News

Two big milestones were hit for the forums this month: 500,000 posts and 5,000 members! This is great news, thanks to all who helped us reach these milestones (wow, it seems like just yesterday we announced we had reached 250,000 posts!!)

It is our sad duty to report that on Tuesday the 2nd of Jan, Kangaroo Joe/The Guv passed away after an eight-month battle with Leukemia. Kangaroo Joe was a moderator on our message boards for around 2.5 years, and his passing is a great loss to us all. Kangaroo Joe was truly a great person and he will be missed. He was interviewed in our 21st monthly newsletter if you want to learn more about him.

Further announcements regarding this tragic event can be found in our Announcements board under Sad News and in The Enclave under Worst News in TO History.

Competition News

As we look forward to another year here on Tau Online we also had the chance to look back and congratulate just a few of the stars from 2006! Yes, the Tau Online New Year's Eve Party was another grand old drunken affair thanks to many of our beer swilling mods! At the end of this annual event (well, actually near the beginning, otherwise everyone would be too drunk...) the Tau Online Awards for 2006 are presented...

Well, what can I say about them...Our very own administrator Tau Online narrowly pipped his alter-ego James Bond to the Best Admin Award and MalVeaux took a clean sweep of the moderator awards plus the Best List Builder, winning an unprecedented 6 awards! (He didn't bribe me either...kudos... Wink).

It was great to see some new faces collect their prizes in the Member Awards, The All-Father's knowledgeable status was recognised, as was the hard work of the Bearded Autarch Dra'Tuisch Novae. In his competition debut Tom Norman (who didn't come in fancy dress to this party...surprise, surprise! Tongue) took the Most Respected and Helpful Member awards.

Finally after Wargamer kept his Fluff Writer's Award for the Third Year in a row (I don't think anyone dares take it off him actually Undecided), it was nice to see forum old-boy GreyDeath take the conversion award (despite having defected to another converting forum...we won't hold it against him!) and newcomer Gareth won the hotly contested Painting Competition.

The new Years Eve party was DJ'ed by Phage, the winner of the Music Awards. Most of the Entertainment was provided by our stand-up comedian and 2006's funniest member - KJ! Cool

I just wish to say Congratulations to everyone who has in somehow contributed to this site and forums in 2006, it has been a very successful one with many milestones passed and a huge growth in popularity. All hail to the mod staff who tried (but ended up drunk and joining in...) to keep security at the party and all hail to the Competition Committee for organising it in the first place! Oh and don't let us forget our wonderful host and leader - Tau Online!

Well I don't know about the rest of you but I still have a drink left Grin,

*Lifts pint glass to toast*

To Tau Online in 2007,



N.B. A full round of the the winners can be found here

(P.S. - If you are gullable and wondering why you weren't invited to the party...erm, look! There's a flying pig outside!)

Top Threads

Top Five Tau Threads

Top Three non-Tau Topics this Month

Interview: With Tom Norman, by Tau Online

Tom Norman will have been a Tau Online member for a year as of two weeks today. Being an experienced painter, Tom's won (and gained 2nd and 3rd place) in quite a few of our forum painting competitions. Tom's a keen collector of Space Marines, playing mainly with his beloved Imperial Fists :-P!

(Q) What attracted you to this site and how have you found it so far?
A: I first came to this site via a search engine when I was looking for answers pertaining to vehicles I'd read about in Imperial Armour volume 1.  For those of you familiar with the various Imperial Armour books, you will know that they are chock full of errors and omissions.  The good people of Tau Online, Elessar in particular if I recall, were able to answer my question.  Since then I've loved being a part of the community, I've learnt so much about the hobby in all respects; painting techniques, tactics, army list optimisation, 40k fluff.  My involvement with Tau Online has been so informative that it's almost a substitute for actual gaming experience!  I'm constantly learning from other people's mistakes and triumphs and I've been able to put such knowledge to good use in my own games and develop tactics of my own to share with less experienced players.

(Q) Which armies do you collect, how big are they and how long has it taken to accumulate them?
A: My first love was Space Marines.  Like most people of Tau Online I picked up the hobby in school when I was eleven, then shelved it when I realised how much work it was to paint them and how expensive it all was.  I've still got some of my old models, like the all-metal Dreadnought…'The Brick'.  I picked up the hobby again about a year ago when I left the army and started working in a computer and hobby games shop in Hertford.  I was surrounded by the stuff for nine hours a day and it eventually wore down my resistance.  The last straw was when a GW rep came to the store and gave me some Imperial Fists from his vast collection (I gather he's attempting to assemble the entire chapter).  I fell instantly in love with the Imperial Fists.  My collection now amounts to approximately 3000 points worth of varying standards.  You can tell my earliest models by the quality of the painting and the tone of the yellow.  But now I've decided it's time to start a new army.  Sitting in a box five feet away from me is an Elysian drop troop army, including aircraft, amounting to little over 1500 points.  So far I've managed to paint one Vulture and a single infantry squad!  I've got a lot of work ahead of me…

(Q) Any advice for the rest of the community?
A: Start using the ‘Preview' button!  Re-read what you've written before sharing it with the rest of the world, and you'll be amazed by how many errors jump out at you.  Some of the stuff I (try to) read on Tau Online makes me ashamed to call myself an Englishman.  The next Brit I catch disgorging a steaming pile of verbal diarrhea gets a thrashing.

(Q) What would be the weirdest battle you have been in?
A: My brother and I once played a take and hold game but the centre of the table was a desolate no-man's land.  To designate the central objective for the purpose of determining the winner, we tossed in a bit of battlefield detritus - a simple jerry can.  It wasn't until late into the game that we realised our two armies were fighting and dying with grim determination and ruthless tenacity to secure a humble fuel can.  After the game we painted it gold and now treat it as a trophy to be passed back and fourth as we win or lose battles to one another.  It's currently proudly mounted atop my Land Raider Prometheus…it'd be a brave man to come and try to take it back.

(Q) Is there a story behind your avatar and if so what?
A: There are many stories behind my Avatar as there are many stories behind every person.  That photo was taken during Op Telic 1 - That's Gulf War 2 for those of you that don't know what Op Telic was.  It was during some down time between stags while watching over a team of Iraqi engineers as they rebuilt electrical pylons some 30Ks north-west of Al Faw.  An American Sea Harrier had blown the hell out of them a week or two earlier.  You should have seen the crater…

(Q) Fluff wise, how do you see the imperial fists? Are they the "staunch defenders of good" or "the cowards of the Imperium, sitting on terra."? Please elaborate.
A: Oh…oh, now that's fightin' talk!  Index Astartes tells us the Fists served as the Emperor's praetorians during the know, the royal guard?  The other legions were mere soldiers.  The Fists were employed to break those worlds the ‘lesser' legions couldn't handle.  It was not until their return to Terra that the Emperor bestowed upon Dorn the honour of fortifying the palace.  Nowadays the Fists swan around the galaxy in the biggest ship in the Imperium, taking the fight to the enemies of mankind while other chapters sit around in their fortress monasteries waiting for someone to ask for their help.  The Imperial Fists don't need an invitation to dispense mayhem.  They just do it.

(Q) If you could choose one player from Tau Online to play against, which one would it be and why?
A: Howloutloud, with his Deathwing.  I just want to beat him, just once, so he'll stop going on about how he's never lost a game with his beloved Termie legion (which I don't believe for a moment by the way).  A clash of the Titans in the form of our two Terminator armies doing battle would be an appropriate grudge match.

(Q) If you had to play against one of these two people, which would it be and why?
A: People who cannot remember the rules for more than 5 minutes with beautifully painted armies, or people who are rules masters but never paint their armies to any degree of excellence.

Definitely the former.  A major part of the hobby for me is being able to look down and see an epic battle unfolding.  Unpainted models just spoil the illusion for me and ruin the game.  If they can't remember the rules it'd be frustrating but I could walk them through it.  There's no excuse for not painting your models.  If you've got time to assemble them and play the odd game here and there then you've got time to paint them, it just means fewer games.  That said though, I really don't mind people who have clearly made an effort but just aren't very good at it.

(Q) What inspired you to be so normal?
A: I was born that way and so were you.  My name's been Tom Norman since I was four.  At work my name is Tom Norman.  When I'm out with friends my name is Tom Norman.  When I go to church my name is Tom Norman.  But when I want to go online I have to call myself ‘0bliVion' or some such?  Next question please.

(Q) What inspired the 'Community Gaming' idea? How do you feel it turned out in the end? Are you pleased with its warm welcome and its spreading? Do you plan on keeping it up? Is it as easy as you first imagined, or more difficult?
A: Good questions!  Community Gaming came about when I posted my first battle report and studied the feedback pertaining to my tactics.  The thought occurred to me in me that it's easy for people to pick apart my strategy once all's said and done (we've all got 20-20 hindsight, right?), but I'd like to see them do better.  From there the idea occurred to me that if the forum regulars could actually participate in a battle as one, they'd have no one to blame but themselves (and the ‘random number generator cubes') if they lost!  I was bowled over by the response; I was never expecting it to be so well received.

But once I got into it I found the work was far harder than I had anticipated, honestly it was exhausting.  At the end of it, I was disappointed that the IG got so soundly beaten, it looked as though the match had been fixed.  But overall I'm pleased with how smoothly it went.  Because of the work involved though I vowed never to do another game again…but after Olannon's attempt I felt obligated to host another.  I learnt from our first game, and Olannon's, that presentation is key.  With that in mind I sought the graphical genius of OmikronAlpha to help me out.  You should see some of the stuff he's managed to produce…it's outstanding, the next game should be very atmospheric.  We hope to begin at the end of January (got a lot of models to paint up).

Thanks :-)

- Tau Online

Kangaroo Joe: A tribute by Elf Boy

Some may know this but for those who don't I have some terrible news.

Freddie Hope (a.k.a Kangaroo Joe, a.k.a Hatman, a.k.a The Guv) Passed away last Tuesday (January 02, 2007) of Leukemia.

He was the moderator of the Ork section and the Enclave here on He was my co-mod, and one of my best friends. We talked almost everyday. He was like the older brother that would help you out with anything. He brought happiness and joy to countless hundreds on TauOnline alone. Unfortunatly, I never met him in person but he was as good a friend as any I've made in person. He helped me through hard times and laughed with me through the good. And although we were quite the opposite in most things(me being the elf fanatic and he being the ork and dwarf player) and both of us always argueing the better we always remained best mates throughout the whole time. He trained me to be a good mod and helped me achieve the person I am today. I owe a lot to him. He was one of the best persons I've ever known. Words cannot describe what his friendship meant to me. And I hope that where ever he his that he is watching us and that he is a peace. I just wish I could've thanked him for everything he's done for me, TO, and everyone he's ever known.

To show some people who didn't know him what he was like I'd like to finish this post by taking a few exerpts of his posts over the time he spent here on TauOnline.

i can teach my Orks to sing. and to make cheese.

If a tree falls in the forest and there is no-one there to hear it, who stole all the squirrels??

<sigh> Do people REALLY think that life is mathematically predictable? There is a LOT more to living then numbers.

Baabaa Moo Cow

No true Ork would touch Belgian Chocolates

I don't do shots, its PINT for the fella. PINT!!!!

Hatman? Who's Hatman? I'm not Hatman. Erm......LOOK!! A GROIN!!!

With all that said and done, I raise my mug to KJ.

A toast to KJ!


Kangaroo Joe.
Kangaroo Joe

Fluff: 'tis the season (Part 1) by Wargamer

This is the first part to a multi-part story. Next month's newsletter will contain the next part.

The blizzard howled through the valley, causing the Shas'Ui to seek cover. It was that or freeze to death.

Nearby, a Shas'vesa'El by the name of Mannheim was casually lining up a shot at some unseen target amidst the snow. Shas'Ui Au'taal Ukos dropped down beside him, struggling to see what the Gue'la was aiming at.
"It's the same every year," Mannheim said casually, "the freezing cold and lack of food drives the Ork hordes south in a green tide of death, and every year we've met them here."
Ui'Ukos shivered, "you fought them before we came? With black powder rifles?"
Mannheim nodded, "And with bow and axe before that. It has always been."
"Then the first thing we do when the snows melt is send Cadres north and purgle the O'res'la for good."
Mannheim smiled, "I'd like to see that."

Adorned in white camo, the Cadre deployed for battle. Over the roar of the blizzard came the mighty cry of war, and then in their thousands, as if imitating the snow, the Green Tide descended.

Orders to fire were given. Plasma and missiles filled the air, the snow turning to hissing steam as it fell. The Orks, dressed in thick furs of the Yako Beasts, died by the dozen, but there were always more to follow. Submunitions blasted entire Mobs to bloody mist, Pathfinders guiding the shots through the impossible conditions with fatal accuracy.

And yet, the Orks came on. They were but a hundred paces from Ui'Ukos when Mannheim gave the order to fire. His Auxiliary Cadre obeyed, loosing off three-hundred shots as one. The heavier fire of the Line-warriors joined them, and the casualties skyrocketed... and yet the Orks came on. Every inch was bought with a hundred lives, the ground was so covered in dead that they lay five corpses deep in places, and the advancing Orks did not touch the soil for a hundred yards, but they advanced regardless.

"Such determination," Ui'Ukos said while reloading, "I almost admire them."
"They cannot afford to fail, Shas'Ui; better to die by our guns than starve or freeze to death."

From behind the pair came a mighty explosion. The two ducked as a chunk of Ion-cannon skimmed overhead, burning debris falling amidst the snow. Another explosion hurled a Broadside team skyward. More and more shells fell from the heavens, their detonations shaking the earth.
"What is that!?" Mannheim cried, "I've never known them to have such firepower!"

It was then the source of the shots emerged.

It was massive; a tracked monstrosity of bronze and iron, bristling with guns and hissing steam. A massive, grinning maw had been painted upon the corrugated-iron head, and its body was stained red with rust and blood. It growled out of the Blizzard, massive Kannonz hurling shells the size of Stealth Suits into the air.

A Steam Gargant.

The latest Shell impacted squarely into a Hammerhead, which simply vanished into a cloud of smoke and snow. Ui'Ukos turned to the Shas'vesa, who was frantically yelling orders into his comm-piece.
"Any ideas?"
"Yes," the Gue'la replied, "Run, or die, and we can't afford to run."
Ui'Ukos reloaded again, startled at how close the Orks were now. "Think of a third option, because I don't plan to die. We need a way to kill that thing, and we need it fast..."

Hobby: Pinning & Storing Models by


Some models are [insert bad word]'s to put together, especially when its metal on metal or large sections that just don't seem to stick. 2 examples are the C'tan and Tau suits (broadsides in particular).

  • You will need a small model drill (0.5-1.5 mm drill bit).
  • First off file the section your attempting to glue flat (to the extent that you can without mis-modelling the parts).
  • Second drill a tiny hole, the size is determined by the size of the area, and drill it about 5mm deep, more if possible. If you cant then drill as far as you can.
  • Make sure both holes line up.
  • Now cut a small piece of modeling pipe (available from hardware stores or your model shop) the same thickness as your drill bit. Cut it into a length of just under double the length of your holes. Make sure all fits perfectly before gluing, not doing this will result in disaster!
  • Glue the pieces into place and leave to dry.

Storing Models

Now this is a big thing with alot of gamers. Although GW does have a specialised carry case, it is a little expensive for alot of people. There are a few ways to carry and store models.

The most simple is to cover each individual model in some tissue paper and then put into a container of some sort, small ice-cream containers work well.

Another method involves the battle force box for your army (or another) lined with bedding underlay foam (the ripply stuff) and the laying your models in it. The models wont move as they get caught between the small 'mounds' in the foam. Is very effective.

Tool boxs lined with flat foam or the bedding foam also work and if you get the right ones you might be able to put some of your main paints, glues and brushes in it too incase of damage.
I personally use a big silver brief case (the ones that radio controls for planes come in) lined with tissue and foam. Some of the more precious models are wrapped in tissue paper.

A shoe box lined with masses of bubble wrap works too but isn't that great, and will usually only work for small armies.

Rant: Why do you hate my armies!? by Wargamer

Jubilations, I'm a Harlequin Player with no army.

Ah well, at least I've got my Ravenwing to fall back on... that wonderful army, which is as of now utterly perfect, and is everything I could ever want from the army...

...check the rumours board when you get the chance.

Oh goody, they're changing the Ravenwing! My army is about to be scuppered! Again!

Bloody hell, GW, why do you hate my armies? Is it because I write better fluff than you do? Is it because I make better rules than you do? Is it because I never got round to blowing up your HQ in a terrorist attack like I've threatened so often? Why do you keep ruining my armies!?

Now I'm sure by now there will be people about to make some wildly farcical accusation about my forces... I'll wager someone will be using words like "beardy" or "overpowered". Yeah, sure.
My Ravenwing, in the first game using their current list, lost an entire squad, worth more than a Land Raider, to a squad of six Rangers. My army won by the skin of its teeth with just a single Land Speeder Tempest surviving. My Ravenwing take heavy casualties, and are very hard to actually use well. That's why I like them; they aren't "overpowered" or "cheezy" or "broken", they are perfect!

And yet, GW is changing the rules and breaking them on me. No more 6+ Jink Save (an essential rule), the Master is being messed around with in ways I dare not think about... I'm not looking forward to this at all.

The concept of a game being "progressive" is so often very, very flawed. Take Gothic, Epic, Manowar... these games don't update often. Heck, Manowar hasn't had any updates since the 80s!

Yet, despite the lack of updates, the games are playable. They are fun! They are great! They are everything 40K is not!

Why can't Games Workshop stop messing with what isn't broken? I wonder if Ork players are going to be losing their army when their Codex comes around... even if they did, I doubt GW would care.

Fluff: Interrogation by Farseer Tyross

Holt glared at the form of the traitor before him. Despite his bruised and bloody form, the man was still impressive. Bound and gagged, the Guardsmen glared back with equal contempt for his captor. "We require information from you, traitor!" boomed Holt. His voice was nothing more then a hollow sound in the dank and dark interrogation room.

Without a word, the Guardsmen stared back. He made no attempt to communicate. "It seems then, we have come an impasse. We require the information your mind holds. And if you won't give it freely, then we'll take it by other means." This time the Inquisitor's voice was low and filled with little satisfaction at the lengths he would have to go to get the information.

With a cold chill, a new figure shifted into the room through a doorway. Despite the darkness, the Guardsmen could tell he was an Adeptus Astartes Librarian. Even before the Librarian had fully entered the room, his mind was already reaching out to touch that of the Guardsmen.

A full minute passed in silence before anyone spoke. "I sense names, faces, places, but none of what your after, Inquisitor" spoke the Librarian in clipped tones though the helmet of his armour. "Tell me, does he have any information about any of the Four Winds? Does he know the location of the rest of the Danitun Guard?" enquired Holt, his voice barely a whisper.

"I sense none of those things, he knows nothing of value to us. It may appear that he is too low in the ranks to be garnered with such information" granted the Librarian as his attention turned to the Inquisitor. With practised ease, the Librarian removed his helmet and rested the heavily armoured protective device under his right arm. Seven metallic service studs were rammed home across his forehead, visible only through reflections in the dim light was from the sparsely placed candles. The light also hide many of the Librarians battle scars which marked his face, but behind the darkness, the Inquisitor felt the cold penetrating gaze of the Librarian as his mind filtered through the thoughts which drifted through the room from those present.

"Although from a curisory glance, you seem to know more then your letting on, Inquisitor..." whispered the Librarian at last. 'It seems you know the location of our enemy. Why did you hold this information from us?' demanded the Librarian, the accusations entering the Inquisitor's mind like a knife in the back. "If you've read my mind, then you already know the answer... Librarian Aran..."

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