Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Krootox in 6th Edition

Collectors, dust off your oxen. The Kroot apes are back!

While my experience with 6th edition is still rather limited, my local gaming buddies and I have discussed the potential for Krootox in the new edition.

You all know of these beasts, some of you may actually own some of them, but I doubt many of you have ever seen them on the tabletop.

In 5th Edition and earlier incarnations of the game, the Krootox just didn't pull his weight. The reason being that their main weapon, the Kroot Gun, was horrible. This S7, AP4 Range 48" rapid fire weapon was just garbage in previous editions, but it's finally come into its own.

The tweaks to the shooting rules now give you a  move-and-shoot autocannon for 35 points, mounted on surly hulking Krootoid. S6 in combat is not half bad either. Put three of these guys alongside 10 Kroot warriors and all of the sudden you've got yourself a Kroot warband that means business.

A squad like that comes to 175 points. Not bad, but this is also a Ld7 unit. Let's give them a Shaper for Ld 8 and now you're looking at 196. Sounds a little expensive, but not restrictively so.

Previously you could only get move-and-fire S7 weapons from Crisis Suits, and often we'd see lists maxed out with 9 to 12 suits. S7 is nice because it is typically affordable points-wise and helps deal with Rhinos, Razorbacks, Chimeras, and other light vehicles. It often has a higher rate of fire too.

Now, you get your autocannon shots from a troops choice and the Krootox helps free up your elites for other roles. No longer must rely solely on your suits for S7 firepower. This allows you the freedom to hone you suits to taking on heavy infantry like power-armor gue'la and those tin-boy Necrons.

I see lots of good things in Krootoxen...now we just need to find a cheaper way of building them. 25 bucks an ox, does add up...and in failcast, who knows if that money is well spent.

Anybody know of any good, cheap Krootox conversions?


tau4eva said...

Biggest issue for me is that taking them still gets rid of infiltrate. Infiltrating/outflanking is still what makes Kroot worth taking.

Tim said...

@Tau4eva, I can see that. Personally I don't infiltrate my kroot that much - they normally deploy along my battleline. I suppose you could expand your collection, and infiltrate/outflank one squad and have another with kroot with oxen along your battleline. The choice is yours.

I like the models enough and now the rules are sweet, so I'll certainly be adding them to mine army.

Rathstar said...


I think they are great for spreading your str 7 firepower outside of your elite slots. Especially now that infantry target locks are gone (sometimes leading to overkill) I think it's great that we can get some str 7 firepower from troops and don't have to cram it all into 3 units of crisis suits.

To help with their leadership issues I've put my shas'el with them. His blacksun filter also allows them to ignore night fighting.

Having some str 7 firepower that can't be instant killed by missile launchers etc. and has some more than a couple of drones to absorb those instant killing shots is great. Deathrains win for pure firepower, but kroot add more resiliance (through numbers), better close combat, better infantry firepower (6 str 7 & 10 str 4 shots at 24") and are a troop choice.

Infiltrating is still great, but there nothing stopping you having a couple of other units.


Tim said...


"Having some str 7 firepower that can't be instant killed by missile launchers etc." Do you mean because they are in a unit of other kroot? Because someone on-line mentioned them being T6 and I was like since when? But I might be missing something.

Xyhelm said...

The Krootox was so worthless in 5th Edition, I never even thought about how it would fair in 6th! I'm really impressed.

I agree that the loss of Infiltrate is rough.

I may have a small unit with 2 Krootox near my baseline and still have a unit of mostly Kroot Hounds outflank. I'd have to think about it.

JW said...

As far as building goes, you might consider investing in some Crypt Horrors. They're heavy-looking models, with broad faces and deep-set eyes, not to mention birdlike talons.
A little trimming, plus some sculpted-on beaks could turn them into proper Oxen with only a little putty. Biggest issue would be replicating the Kroot Gun, which would take some styrene tubing and maybe a little sprue.

Anonymous said...

The unit price is actually 175 points (not 165) for a unit with 3 kroot ox. With troop status, necessity of cover, and without the infiltrate ability, this unit may have a similar role to Imperial Guard platoons squads equipped with autocannons. Roughly comparable to 2 of such IG squads (combined) in firepower and number of wounds, it is however more mobile, significantly better in assault, takes advantage from forests, and has smaller footprint on the table. Very interesting. :-)

Ede said...

When Tau first came out Krootox were Toughness 3(5) and cost 50 points while taking up a Heavy support slot. Of course this is back in the day when kroot had to roll a leadership test to sweeping adavance or they would get distracted and start eating the fallen. Of course this was a couple years before he was dwarfed by imperial armour 3's Greater Gnarloc.

The krootox seems to have had very little room in the spotlight, but ive always been a fan of the happy little vegetarian pet.
During my intro game back in 2002 my opponent took an extra 500 points in a 750 point match, despite the fact that I had no idea what I was doing. The highlight of the game happened the turn after I assaulted an empty Land Raider with my fire warriors (GO EMP!!!). I got a lucky shot with this guy and blew up a rhino and killed everyone inside and then passed an all on your own test, and managed to kill the remnants of his assault marine squad (3 guys out of 5) in an assault.

I'm glad to see him get a boost with rapid fire, remember guys 6 overwatch shots and counter assaulting with 9 attacks that wound blueberries on 2+ is always a plus.

PS Tim, been a long time fan of the blog and the conversion work. I'm glad to see the new rules have re-sparked your passion for the game. Now that my other relatively new hobby(parenting) has had the kinks worked out with my wife, I would appreciate any advice on some gaming groups in the NOVA greater metropolitan area.

Brett Whalen said...

A truly frightening krootox unit is 10 kroot, 3 krootox in an aegis defence line with a quad gun. 10 S7 shots a turn, 4 of which are twin-linked skyfire interceptor shots. The kroot all get 4+ cover saves, 2+ when they go to ground.

Meigeall said...

Modeling: Two coldones (sub/green stuff kroot heads} pulling a short-barreled autocannon armed kroot chariot!

Fred9802 said...

Very happy to see this...toying with the idea of doing Tau in a Xenos campaign my friend is running, and I have 5-6 of these boys when I was picking up models for my Kroot Mercs a few years back.

Found this trolling for tactics and wonder if the unit behind the aegis would benefit from Kroot Hounds. (I am hoping so because of the sheer number of these models that I have. Must be 60+)

Aaron said...

I've only seen a small handful of people actually get the kroot and their true purpose on the battle field. It's not for shooting. they are the only serious close combat threat the Tau have. But they suck at close combat you say... this is true... unless you use them right then they are an unstoppable force of nature. but the trick to using them right is when setting up the table. Kroot don't do well in the open, or in a building, or a lake or crater Kroot were built for the forest. If there is no forest on the table don't bring Kroot it's that simple. but if their is then the conditions are just right to show your enemy just what the kroot are capable of. The guns are just there as bait. The Kroot can park in the trees with no penalty and shoot at units that can't shoot back without suffering that penalty, plus as long as they are in the trees they get a 4+ cover save. By putting a piece of forest terrain in just the right place you can harass the enemy in just the right way to make them do something stupid like come after you in close combat. You need carnivores don't think of them as individual units they are extra wounds for your shaper! the more carnivores you have the more wounds your shaper gets... he's not a character so he can't offer or except a challenge he sits in the back keeping the kroot in combat. MAX squad size means lots of wounds and the Kroot stick around. It also means they will be hitting back pretty hard. You need hounds they run forward and soften up the enemy before they hit, they will probably die but there will be less hits against your carnivores. Finally you need Ox's. with their strength 7 attacks their is very little they can't kick the crap out of.
so this is what I typically see. min squad of Kroot carnivores with little or no upgrades just to fill extra points. out in the open... either rushed or rush into close combat get squashed on turn one and the Tau player says Kroot suck. when used right I have slaughtered terminator squads, sent whole units of bloodletters back the warp and even harried a greater daemon of Korn until turn six when the game ended and all he was able to do was kill a handful of Kroot.