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Author Topic: DropShip of the Week: Taihou  (Read 8283 times)

Jellico

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DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« on: 20 January 2014, 15:10:03 »
Taihou Assault DropShip, TRO3085


While there are larger and deadlier ships there are few ships that match the simple purity of purpose of the Taihou. Everything about the Taihou is based around getting its bow auto cannons into range where they can rapidly eviscerate any DropShip in existence. Having seen a Taihou destroy an Arondight in a single salvo I can not stress enough that an operational Taihou deserves the utmost respect.

As you might have guessed from the above, the primary weapon of the Taihou is a bow mounted bay filled with four Heavy Sub Capital Cannons. With damage ranging from 280 to 112 depending on the level of bracketing, this is an accurate and deadly weapon system. Backing it up are a mix of heavy PPCs and MRM40s. The MRM bays are of particular note doing 72 points of damage with the accuracy boost of an Apollo system. They will do even more with the Apollo disabled. Finally a Naval C3 system is buried deep within the heart of the Taihou. Not only will the Taihou benefit from the targeting of its sister ships, but the close ranged attack of the Taihou makes it a natural spotting unit.

The major fault of all this firepower is it is all very short ranged. The Taihou deals with that in a variety of ways. Firstly a high thrust rating allows the Taihou to close the range quickly using evasion, and then stay at close range. Next the Taihou carries a Screen Launcher in the bow. Typically these are defensive systems, but the Taihou uses its Screen Launcher offensively, creating clouds of obscuring chaff for it to scurry into while making its approach. Then, if an enemy can overcome the combination of chaff and evasion the Taihou is covered in 115 tons of locally produced Heavy Ferro Aluminium armour.

All of this capability comes at a cost. At 12,000 tons this is a big ship with limited capabilities other than killing other ships. A pair of Small Craft and 36 battle armour is carried for picket work but the Taihou lacks the endurance for extended operations. While fast itself it is too large to hunt down multiple targets. Additionally it is not a great AAA platform. It may be hard for a wing of aerospace fighters to kill, but the Taihou’s weapons allow it to do little more than protect itself.

So how does one use a Taihou? Against other ships, simply put its nose forward and charge. Try and use the systems provided to avoid getting hit. While the Taihou is not likely to be critted initially there is no reason to encourage it. Against Aerospace fighters it is more difficult. On its own the Tiahou has the thrust to dance with the fighters. Its secondary weapons are brutal if they hit, and the armour makes it a tough kill. As part of a squadron the short range of the Taihou’s weapons force it to move towards the battle if it wants to take part, even when getting C3 data. While it has the thrust to do this, it can do bad things to defensive formations.

How does one beat a Taihou? Firepower. A modern SCC ship like an Arondight SCC or the big Blakists ships have the firepower and the armour to do it, but its far from a sure thing and highly reliant on initiative. The Taihou is so good at what it does it can rapidly turn the tables on these less specialised platforms. The safest way is massed aerospace fighters. Keep the Taihou away from your ships if at all possible. WarShips are another possibility. But one can hardly expect a single Taihou to take on a WarShip.
In summary the Taihou is the definition of an anti DropShip platform. Brutal and simple it is highly effective at its defined role, but is less than ideal outside of a simple combat situation.

sillybrit

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #1 on: 20 January 2014, 17:45:30 »
Although I normally avoid playing DCMS, I couldn't resist running a force built around a Taihou. It looks superb, has solid capability in its role and I like the idea of fast, tough DropShips as NC3 spotters. I'd favor a spotter with more defensive systems (AMS, Screens, heavier armor), with integral offensive capability secondary to the spotting role, but using what we've got, the Taihou is it.

To provide fighter escort I like to assign SL-15K Slayers and the newer Suzakus, as they're able to match/exceed the Taihou's thrust, although the Koroshiya could easily take that role instead. Likewise, the new Oo-Suzumebachi makes for a good AMS escort as well as being able to deliver battle armor in boarding actions. Without WarShips I used Nekohono'o SCLs to exploit the NC3 spotting, with WarShip choices having to rely upon custom modifications of surviving DCMS WarShips in near-canon scenarios.

RebelRunner

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #2 on: 20 January 2014, 19:08:56 »
That thing looks horrifying.

I must have one or five.
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Tai Dai Cultist

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #3 on: 20 January 2014, 20:10:51 »
Although I normally avoid playing DCMS, I couldn't resist running a force built around a Taihou. It looks superb, has solid capability in its role and I like the idea of fast, tough DropShips as NC3 spotters. I'd favor a spotter with more defensive systems (AMS, Screens, heavier armor), with integral offensive capability secondary to the spotting role, but using what we've got, the Taihou is it.

To provide fighter escort I like to assign SL-15K Slayers and the newer Suzakus, as they're able to match/exceed the Taihou's thrust, although the Koroshiya could easily take that role instead. Likewise, the new Oo-Suzumebachi makes for a good AMS escort as well as being able to deliver battle armor in boarding actions. Without WarShips I used Nekohono'o SCLs to exploit the NC3 spotting, with WarShip choices having to rely upon custom modifications of surviving DCMS WarShips in near-canon scenarios.

Good news for Taihou lovers who hate the DCMS!

The DCMS doesn't have any.  The DCA owns/operates them!

ANS Kamas P81

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #4 on: 20 January 2014, 20:18:15 »

Alan Grant

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #5 on: 21 January 2014, 10:25:23 »
Some of the best art for any spacecraft in this game. Period.

Its one of those dropships that makes me feel less sad about the disappearance of warships.
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UnLimiTeD

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #6 on: 21 January 2014, 11:39:43 »
The Taihou is the essence of a heavy attack ship;
Frightening forward armament, fast, tough, and with a singularity of purpose few other ships can match.
It's pretty much a yardstick for Assault Ship performancde  in that respect. I doubt there's a lot of dropships in the same weight bracket that can match it in direct combat, though it obviously lacks any real flexibility.
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Jellico

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #7 on: 21 January 2014, 18:17:06 »
Although I normally avoid playing DCMS, I couldn't resist running a force built around a Taihou. It looks superb, has solid capability in its role and I like the idea of fast, tough DropShips as NC3 spotters. I'd favor a spotter with more defensive systems (AMS, Screens, heavier armor), with integral offensive capability secondary to the spotting role, but using what we've got, the Taihou is it.

Try the Achilles (3088). The 8/12 puts it a range bracket ahead of the Taihous on approach. Of course, both DropShips are best under 14 hexes.
But yes. Consider the combination of 2 Achilles, 1 Taihou, 1 Neko (SCL), 1 Vengeance, and 1 Mule. Nets you 44 ASF, slots for (from memory) 19 Small Craft, half of which are Oo-Suzumebachi and over a battalion of BA to fill them for offensive boarding.

Compare to the Dominion's Aesir Stars (Aesir, Vanir, 2 Nagasawas). The difference is in the transport. A LF equipped Odyssey vs say a Starlord or pair of Invaders. Both are very flexible formations, though the DCA's effort is clearly the stronger.

Weirdo

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #8 on: 21 January 2014, 18:32:07 »
Try the Achilles (3088). The 8/12 puts it a range bracket ahead of the Taihous on approach. Of course, both DropShips are best under 14 hexes.
But yes. Consider the combination of 2 Achilles, 1 Taihou, 1 Neko (SCL), 1 Vengeance, and 1 Mule. Nets you 44 ASF, slots for (from memory) 19 Small Craft, half of which are Oo-Suzumebachi and over a battalion of BA to fill them for offensive boarding.

Compare to the Dominion's Aesir Stars (Aesir, Vanir, 2 Nagasawas). The difference is in the transport. A LF equipped Odyssey vs say a Starlord or pair of Invaders. Both are very flexible formations, though the DCA's effort is clearly the stronger.

I've been working on fleets around this size to quickly build forces for 3145 space scenarios, and these look pretty good. I may have to yoink and/or expand them for my own purposes. O0
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Tai Dai Cultist

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #9 on: 21 January 2014, 21:52:40 »
Taihous and SCL Nekos are like chocolate and peanut butter in a NC3 network.  The 3088 Achilles having NC3 as well is the sprinkles on top.

Wrangler

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #10 on: 21 January 2014, 22:17:10 »
Taihou certainly looks cool and has alot possiblities.  Specially with NC3 system beating at the heart of its steely hull.

How typical was it or is it for DropShips to operate in squadrons of 6?  I know fiction is mainly written from Author's point of view and player does what they want.  What would be the typical formation for these bad boys?  Would it be running with a partner, while transports assets run the gambit get their boys & girls on the ground?
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #11 on: 21 January 2014, 23:14:56 »
The problem is that, as far as I can tell, IWM doesn't have a model out. Seriously, if they put out models for all the 3085 and 3145 aero in micro, I'd blow a hundred bucks tomorrow ^-^ ;)
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Jellico

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #12 on: 22 January 2014, 17:26:40 »
How typical was it or is it for DropShips to operate in squadrons of 6?  I know fiction is mainly written from Author's point of view and player does what they want.  What would be the typical formation for these bad boys?  Would it be running with a partner, while transports assets run the gambit get their boys & girls on the ground?
Well, a DCA ASF squadron is 12...

I am sure it is mentioned in one of the Aerotech books.

P237 of Strat Ops describes a BattleForce DropShip Squadron of 4. Then you get into practical limitations. For example the Dominion Star of 4 limited by the number of collars on a Odyssey.

Kojak

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #13 on: 22 January 2014, 17:38:32 »
Edit: never mind
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #14 on: 22 January 2014, 17:42:54 »
Rule of Cool. You'll note that almost every bit of DropShip art that shows the ship on the ground will have at least one Battlemech near it, even if said ship is not a 'mech hauler. Also, it helps give you a sense of scale. When you see the Atlas, and you see that the guns on the nose are each as big as said Atlas, you know this thing's packing heat.

Heck, for all we know those 'mechs were carried in that Taihou as bulk cargo for some reason, and they just got completely unloaded.
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Kojak

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #15 on: 22 January 2014, 18:05:27 »
I think I must have hallucinated 'Mechs standing next it, because I don't see them there now. I blame my flu.
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Diplominator

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #16 on: 22 January 2014, 18:08:20 »
Not hallucinations, just memories of the artwork from the TRO.

Well, actually, you could still be hallucinating, just not about this specific thing.

Nikas_Zekeval

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #17 on: 22 January 2014, 19:32:39 »
One thing I noticed looking at this, two small craft and a battle armor company.  Anyone considered partnering it with the Oo-Suzumebachi?

A pair will give the formation point defense and split the company onto three different platforms for multiple boardings.  Which can hit multiple targets, or for larger ones force multiple breaches on the same target.  Or just make it harder to get all your marines in one shot.

Wrangler

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #18 on: 23 January 2014, 00:15:56 »
Not hallucinations, just memories of the artwork from the TRO.

Well, actually, you could still be hallucinating, just not about this specific thing.
Maybe the dropship's image was to be used as troop carrier originally.
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #19 on: 23 January 2014, 00:48:07 »
I think Weirdo's idea works best.

Also, it helps give you a sense of scale. When you see the Atlas, and you see that the guns on the nose are each as big as said Atlas, you know this thing's packing heat.
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Jellico

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #20 on: 23 January 2014, 17:47:22 »
Here is a little after action report including the Taihou.

Wrangler

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #21 on: 23 January 2014, 17:58:32 »
Ugh.  I'm not surprised the results of the Taihou's performance.  Surprised the FedSun's dropships getting mashed so soon. I didn't think to highly of the Aurora Gunship variant.   
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #22 on: 23 January 2014, 20:13:51 »
Never used it but a long way one of my favourite DropShips to look at

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #23 on: 23 January 2014, 21:17:05 »
Here is a little after action report including the Taihou.

Very nice...I was hoping for actual minis, but this is quite nice too. May I suggest color-coding units in the writeup? For example, Taihou for the DC, and Excalibur for the FedSuns. Especially when the same units are used by both sides, it would really help clear things up  :) :)
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #24 on: 25 January 2014, 07:18:54 »
Here is a little after action report including the Taihou.

No surprise there really since the Davion Navy still lacks a true PWS in the same class as the Taihou....something with either similar concentrated punch and/or the armor to survive said attacks. I personally wouldn't mind a really tough PWS that would be a pain to kill on the board but I digress...

All in all, I feel like the Taihou designers really got the concept of the PWS down. It's simple in its design but it still hits like a sledgehammer.
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #25 on: 26 January 2014, 09:05:02 »
No surprise there really since the Davion Navy still lacks a true PWS in the same class as the Taihou....something with either similar concentrated punch and/or the armor to survive said attacks. I personally wouldn't mind a really tough PWS that would be a pain to kill on the board but I digress...
Colossus PWS! :D

Of course if that were to happen the Lyrans would feel pressured to prove they have the biggest 'ego' and would probably try to get a Behemoth PWS.


But in all seriousness, I think that TPTB are doing a good thing when it comes to the pocket warships and are keeping their size down for the most part. I really feel that what doomed the warships was the very quick rise in their size and weight in a post Succession War era.
A slower build-up in the size and mass and thus power of the pocket warships means that the naval arms race won't go too out of hand. And once they reach the point that you got something like a Behemoth in size as a pocket warship, then you might start seeing actual warships again.

sillybrit

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #26 on: 26 January 2014, 14:56:21 »
Colossus PWS! :D

Jokes aside, the AFFS wouldn't even need a Colossus chassis to better counter the Taihou, although obviously the extra mass would be nice. A simple overhaul of the Arondight's armament (and maybe DHS) would do the job. Spheroid DropShips have more payload available than an aerodyne of otherwise identical stats, and with the Arondight having lower thrust, fuel, DHS and SI than the Taihou it means it has even more potential. Just a rough estimate shows that the Taihou has about 4kt available for weaponry & cargo, while the Arondight could pack around 6.3kt, so it could easily fit a heavier bow armament that could make up for the lower armor and SI. But that's getting more into a discussion about the Arondight rather than a Taihou, so I'll stop there.

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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #27 on: 26 January 2014, 17:03:48 »
Taihou has some serious advantages over the Arondight.   Especially if look at their armor, while they both inflict similar amount of damage via Heavy Sub-Cap Cannons.  I think its natural to compare the two since their contemporaries from same publication. 

While the Arondight needs to get into the face of an enemy force to bring its big guns to bare, the Naval Suite on Taihou can allow it to attack better close range if it has spotting vessel.     Davys are going need access to the Naval Suite if they're going want seriously take advantage of their ship's new firepower. 

Lyrans have it worse they end up fighting the Draconis Combine again, since their assault DropShips and PWS are either WiE vessels or tough little Würger escort small craft.
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Re: DropShip of the Week: Taihou
« Reply #28 on: 26 January 2014, 17:29:06 »
The Taihou vs Arondight comparison will pretty much always go in the Taihou's favor.  As an aerodyne, being able to focus 3 firing arcs onto one target is something the spheroid Arondight will never be able to do.

Of course, the Arondight is better at sweeping up ASFs, but the Taihou was never meant for that.  It's a dedicated ship-killer.

 

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