It’s quite possible to play a reckless Tohaa army who doesn’t care about casualties―but you may be missing out. Tohaa has competent casualty maintenance units, and it’s often wise including a strong selection of support units to indirectly assist your campaign of planetary conquest.
This is written specifically in mind to players who like to stock up on big hitter Tohaa troops, who may dismiss our support-oriented options. Support skills are often worth your while, and certainly worth giving a few tries. Certainly, support troops aren’t the most exciting thing in Tohaa, but you might be glad to understand and use their various abilities.
We have the best paramedics in Infinity. Our Symbiont Armor gives medikits a PH+3 mod, which washes away the usual PH-3 penalty. This is essentially a free bonus to capitalize on. Medikits can be delivered in base contact with unconscious troops, or shot from a medigun. In either case, you are usually rolling on PH11, a 55% chance, to heal a troop with Symbiont armor.
Many ITS missions also impart bonuses to doctors and paramedics, such as Coffin Raiders, Cold Sleep, and Supplies. If you know you are playing such a mission, it’s wise to upgrade your Kamael or Sakiel Forward Observers to Paramedics. The Gao-Tarsos is also a fine paramedic. I feel naked without at least 1 paramedic in my Tohaa lists.
We really only have one doctor, the Kumotail, though it’s worth mentioning the Hatail, as many metas and tournaments permit the standard 12XP SpecOps, and Doctor is a typical role for a Hatail. Unlike the Paramedic, whose healing is based on the victim’s Physique (PH), the Doctor uses her Willpower (WIP) to heal. In the case of the Kumotail, a 14 or less (70% chance!) is success.
You have two choices when packing a Kumotail: Stick her in a Triad, or stick Chaksa Servants to her. The benefit of sticking her in a triad, is that she is naturally going to be moving with capable combatants. Most Kumotail triads have a Makaul and a gunner or Kaeltar, and the three of these together can capably defend against casual intrusions. A Kumotail can work under Eclipse smoke without penalty. She cannot both be in a triad and use Servants, however.
So, the Chaksa Servants. She can be synced up with two. The first benefit is that she can stay way back in your backfield, stuffed in a dark corner, and do her wetwork from afar through the Servant. At 3 points, Servants are far cheaper than a triad, and good at consuming an enemy order or two with their Mimetism/Hyperdynamics skills. Because of the nuances of the G: Servant rule, the Kumotail+Servants can also function as an ad hoc surveillance and minesweeping network. Chaksa Servants can Alert friendly models to notorious flankers like Tigers and Garudas and Ko Dali. As cheap pieces, you can also pull a Machiavellian stunt, and send them to their fate to clear out perimeter weapons like mines, CrazyKoalas, and MadTraps.
Which is better? It depends on your preference, and the needs of your list and scenario. A list that already include 6 triads you like probably doesn’t need to round a third triad just for a Kumotail. Conversely, missions that favor high-WIP specialists and doctors will give contextual value to putting Madame Kumotail in the triads that enter the Objective Room.
However I prefer to assign Servants to the Kumotail and preserve her role as healer. This performed on smaller, more elite lists where I need to keep my good troops active. I also quite like Servants for their ability to Alert and neutralize perimeter weapons. As many things in Infinity, of course, your mileage may vary. It’s worth experimenting.
And the Kumotail is also an Engineer, which leads us to a nice segue.
The Kosuil and Kumotail are our Engineers, and both on a nice WIP score of 14. Your Hatail SpecOps can also be an Engineer, though that is less common these days, as Symbiont Armor no longer requires Engineer skill to be able to doctor.
The Engineer skill allows one to restore Structure points to STR-based units, which, in our context, is currently only the Kaauri. If you like keeping your little Kaauri alive, you’ll probably want to pack a Kosuil or Kumotail or two in your list.
The other primary role of the Engineer skill (outside of specific ITS missions, of course) is to repair negative effects such as IMM1 or Isolated. A Kosuil thus is a very wise unit to pair with our Heavy Infantry, as they are common targets for such types of attacks. The Kumotail is not nearly as hardy as a Kosuil, however, and so she will not usually end up in a high-action Heavy Infantry triads.
Again, the Servants are a good fit for the Kumotail for this purpose, as she can extend her hands across the battlefield to repair our Kaauri and maintain any nerfs done to Neema and the Ectros. You can put Servants on a Kosuil, but I wouldn’t do it on a list without at least 2 Kaauri.
Which leads to another lovely segue:
CHAIN OF COMMAND
I’d definitely classify this as a support skill, and one of the best in the game. For 5 points, you get Loss of Lieutenant insurance. Sniping our Lieutenants is one of the best tactics an enemy can perform against the Tohaa, as our triads become virtually useless in a Loss of Lieutenant situation. Unless you have a lot of Command Tokens on hand…
The Taqeul is the latest entry in the steely march of Tohaa professionalism. Its Lieutenant profiles are good ones, but we’re looking at the Chain of Command (“CoC”) options here. With its high statline, Symbiobugs and Regeneration, a CoC Taqeul can put itself to use, and providing he survives the firefights he finds, will remain a tough backup to your real Lieutenant. The CoC Taqeul is also a logical and complimentary choice when you pack Symbiobomb Kaeltars:
Cheaper, linkable Kaeltar can run either as CoC Symbiomate handlers, or much-cheaper Symbiobomb handlers. Both kinds of Kaeltar are good filler for a triad, socketing naturally to ranged killers like a Missile Sukeul or Gao-Rael Sniper. The Kaeltar is one of the most popular units these days, and I recommend it to everyone expanding their 300-point armies.
The CoC Kaeltar’s Symbiomates are their own kind of unique support tool. Symbiomates provide the option of negating all non-critical hits in a single order. Functionally, they are invincibility powerups. The tactical applications of this invincibility is obvious yet expanse: you could stick a Symbiomate on a blockade runner Symbiont trooper, blitz through fifteen AROs, and ignore all of them, provided none were critical hits. It is a skill without precedence in Infinity, and makes the CoC Kaeltar my choice for the #1 best support unit in Infinity. The Bomb Kaeltar provides another kind of utility which you can read about here.
The CoC Kaeltar find their way into many, many Tohaa lists. The Taqeul can require a bit more planning to fit into your list, but he can be a strong choice.
Forward Observers and the unique Symbiobugs can Target enemy troops. This is primarily useful to shoot Guided rockets from our Chaksas with, but it is also useul in that it simply imparts a BS+3 bonus to all shooters for the turn. It occasionally can be worth targeted a Big Bad troop before spending several orders to do a shootout, as shooting a Targeted TAG has significantly better odds than shooting an untargeted TAG. However, unless you have an objective to target an enemy, I would not recommend attempting to target anything more than once.
Triads give +1 Burst to BS Attacks, and the Forward Observer skill is a type of BS Attack. Thus, the Kamael, Sakiel, and Sukeul all get to roll 3 dice instead of 2 dice when using the Forward Observer skill. Of these 3 triad troop, the best to use FO is the Sukeul, since her Mimetism increases her odds of success, and she’s likely to have a Symbiomate to save her in case she fails. In general, however, I wouldn’t recommend using the Kamael and Sakiel to FO, and instead just use the FO skill to make them “Specialists” for ITS missions, as we discussed in 103.
Alternatively, and perhaps better, the Kotail and Clipsos both have Surprise Shot from their “marker” states, which increases your odds to FO by decreasing your opponent’s odds to succeed in reaction. Additionally, both the Kotail and Clipsos are very good at flanking enemies too, ensuring that your odds are altogether very good.
Finally, the Taqeul’s Symbiobugs will put the enemy in the Targeted state. However, this is only relevant in your reactive turns, and therefore you cannot use Guided or Speculative ammunition while the Bugs have targeted someone. Still, Bugs support your other defenders by applying that BS+3 mod. An exploding Symbiobug will often halt an enemy rambo in his tracks, simply because he won’t want to continue while Targeted.
Tohaa lists usually include 2 to 4 Forward Observers for ITS missions, so it’s usually a good idea to toss in a Rocket Chaksa to make use of your ability to target.
Tohaa is not good at traditional infowar, but our two hackers can be put to good use. Outside of SpecOps, we have the Kamael with a White Hacking Device, and the character Hatail Aelis Keesan with a Defensive Hacking Device. Captain Spud’s Hacking Helper is a perfect illustrated assistant to our hacking devices’ programs.
Let’s talk about Aelis first. She is a good trooper, but very expensive. Due to nuances in hacking rules―unless an enemy hacks first, then moves―she cannot use her Defensive Hacking Device to defend herself. Irony. However, she can use still use it to buff Ectros and Neema against hacking attacks, to boost a +3 to a Gao-Tarsos combat jump roll, and to cure a possessed Gorgos. Outside of her usual uses, those three programs bear mention.
A more useful “hacker” hacker is the Kamael with White Hacking Device. Because the White Hacking Device effectively grants Sixth Sense throughout everywhere that the Kamael is eligible to hack, you can actually use the Kamael to respond to enemy hackers. It’s otherwise identical to the Defensive Hacking device, meaning the Kamael can buff your big troops, too.
Last but not least, the stalwart Chaksa Auxiliar brings our only profile with the Baggage skill. Baggage can have bonus applications in certain missions, but in Tohaa, one of its main benefits is the ability to cancel the Unloaded state.
Any weapon which is “disposable”, such as Antipersonnel Mines, D-Charges, Panzerfausts, Flammenspeers, and Symbiobugs, can be reloaded by the Baggage skill. Simply move the Baggage Chaksa in base contact with the trooper with the empty weapon and spend a short skill, and the Chaksa will refill the empty weapon.
Let’s put all this together into a full-bodied support network. Using each of these strengths, we’ll come out with something like this:
TAQEUL (Chain of Command) Spitfire, SymbioBugs / Pistol, Knife. (1.5 | 40)
SUKEUL Lieutenant (Forward Observer) K1 Combi Rifle, D-Charges / Pistol, Breaker Pistol, Knife. (0 | 32)
KOSUIL Engineer Boarding Shotgun, D-Charges, Panzerfaust / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 24)
KAMAEL Hacker (White Hacking Device) Combi Rifle / Pistol, Knife. (0.5 | 16)
KAELTAR (Chain of Command) Light Shotgun, Flash Pulse + 2 SymbioMates / Pistol, Electric Pulse. (0.5 | 21)
KUMOTAIL Combi Rifle, D-Charges / Pistol, Knife. (0 | 22)
CHAKSA AUXILIAR (Baggage, Sensor) Heavy Flamethrower / Pistol, CCW. (0 | 10)
GAO-TARSOS Paramedic (Medikit) Combi Rifle, D-Charges / Pistol, CC Weapon. (0 | 30)
3 SWC | 195 Points
Try opening this list in the Army app linked about. Round it out to 300 points with whatever complimentary options you like―you already have 7 Specialists, too, so feel free to plough through that SWC. And do you see the subtle synergy here? What’ here at 195 points is not only a robust backbone to your army, but a strong foundation any ITS mission.
TL;DR It’s possible and often even wise to play a reckless Tohaa army, but a supported Tohaa army has its own form of strength. Find what you like, and don’t be too quick to dismiss “bad” troops.