“Each must find their own way. If those in our heartland had witnessed the savageries of the void as have we they would know this. The hand of each of the great starfarers is turned against the other, none will join their strength together just to see their ancient enemies prosper. Neither should we.” – Shas’O Vior’la Shovah Kais Mont’yr, Tau war hero; translated to Low Gothic
The Tau empire is a rapidly expanding empire situated inside of the Ultima Segmentum, near the Eastern Fringe. Founded by the Ethereals, who lead the Tau empire in the name of the so-called ‘Greater Good’. Several alien races (Kroot, among others) have allied themselves with the Tau.
The Tau empire borders the Imperium, and lies just within the reach of the Astronomican. While hungry in its colonisation method, the species lacks warp travel and is thus a bit player in galaxy as a whole, and will likely soon suffer an ignominious death.
These entirely replace the Origin Path in Core:
Air : Treat any one Pilot skill as a Trained Basic Skill. Gain a choice of 2 of the Catfall, Leap Up, Rapid Reaction, and Weapons Training (Tau Basic). Talents.
Earth: Treat any two “occupational” skill (frex, Tech-Use (Tau), Wrangling etc) as Trained Basic skills. Gain a choice of 2 of the Foresight, Iron Jaw, and * Talents.
Fire: Gain Weapons Training (Pistol, Basic, and Heavy Tau Weapons). Gain a choice of 2 of the Quick Draw, Combat Formation, Marksman, and Disarm Talents.
Water: Treat Barter and one of Commerce or Charm as Trained Basic Skills. Gain a choice of 2 of the Air of Authority, Polyglot, Total Recall, and Paranoia Talents.
Also gain these Traits:
For the Greater Good
Tau have an overarching belief in “The Greater Good”, a concept that all should be equal, and everyone has their place within the Tau Empire.
This sets them at something of a disadvantage when dealing with others – they suffer a -5 penalty to any Fellowship tests against those who hold another strong religious belief (so, Kroot would listen to them, but an Emperor-Fearing Human would be hard pushed to listen to the heathens).
Being “Space Commies”, they are also somewhat less concerned with money than most races – meaning that they cause any group they are part of to suffer a -1 to their Profit Factor.
Tau have a very small Warp presence – so much so, they seem to be absolutely naive about the workings of the Warp. Tau can never become Psykers, of any sort. They also suffer a -10 penalty to any Forbidden Lore skill which relates to the Warp (so, Daemonology, The Warp, etc.) However, they are also far less likely to gain the attention of such beasts – they gain a +10 bonus to attempts to resist possession by a Warp entity, and GMs should ensure that the creature has either a specific plan to target the Tau, or no other choice.
Earth: Explorator (Drone replacing Servo-Skull)
Imperium-specific talents may not be bought, and Tau-specific Advances may replace them at GM’s discretion (I.e. Battlesuit Training for Fire Caste, Drive (Tau Craft) for Air Caste).
Tau do not gain mutations, though still gain malignancies as appropriate.
Use imperial world rules for Fate/Wounds