Tau Ignore Upkeep Guide and Tips for Warhammer 40,000: Gladius – Relics of War

Do you want to build a KV128 Stormsurge every 2 turns? Are you sick and tired of Utopia completely murdering your entire economy? Then look no further for I, CuddilyWuddily, will teach you how to obliterate Utopia and flood the map with KV128 Stormsurges as fast as any other faction!


As an ultimate unit lover, I got into this game to spam ultimate units and when I learned I couldn’t do that with one of my favorite factions in Warhammer 40k because of Utopia, I went completely mad. I raged and raved like crazy fiend, rattling the shackles and cages created by Utopia that entrap me so. And after months of crying and screaming like a pathetic wench, I finally did it. I finally broke free of the shackles and cages of Utopia and obliterated Utopia with my own two hands.

As a result of this incident, I have developed tunnel vision. If it does not pertain to obliterating Utopia and flooding the map with Stormsurges I don’t know anything about it. I don’t know how to play Tau in PvP, I don’t know how to play Tau normally, I don’t know what most of the Tau units do or what they’re capable of it. I don’t know anything other than how to obliterate Utopia and I don’t care to know. The thought of not only reviving Utopia, but to live with it again just to learn how to properly play Tau makes me really, really, really sick.

Which is why I will never be able to create a comprehensive Tau guide. So if you’re looking to learn about Tau proper, look elsewhere. This guide is just a very short and simple guide that will teach you how to murder and butcher Utopia so we can all flood the game with KV128 Stormsurges.

So if you’re here to learn about Tau proper, look elsewhere.

But if you’re here to flood the map with KV128 Stormsurges, rejoice and look no further! For I, CuddilyWuddily, will bestow upon you the knowledge and wisdom of my craft.

Utopia and why it tortures me so

The bottleneck for all economies in Gladius is population growth speed. Meaning neither building construction time nor cost of each building matters. The most optimal way of building your economy is making sure each building you build results in the most amount of gain to ensure we get the most out of each and every pop because population growth speed is the bottleneck of your economy.

So lets say each resource building increases your income by 6 and decreases it by 1 (upkeep) and 1% (pop loyalty). And each additional loyalty building increases your income by 6% and decreases it by 2 (upkeep) and 1% (pop loyalty). When is it better to build a resource building and when is it better to build a loyalty building?

To find the answer I modeled a regular faction economy into an equation

And made a spreadsheet using said equation, highlighting the most optimal ratio of resource building to loyalty building for the most optimal economic growth.

And I did the exact same thing with the Tau economy complete with Utopia.

Now if you compare the two spreadsheets, for the first ten resource/loyalty buildings Utopia makes the Tau economy superior. But after the first ten resource/loyalty buildings the Tau economy takes a complete nosedive.

At 20 buildings the Tau economy is a whopping 76.9% of a regular economy.

At 30 buildings the Tau economy is a whopping 64.3% of a regular economy.

At 40 buildings the Tau economy is a whopping 57.6% of a regular economy.

And it just gets worse and worse and worse.

And this is my own direct testing with 3 Tau cities.

Note: This was intentionally done on grass terrain while avoiding all outpost bonuses. In addition no Cadre Fireblades were used. So on volcanic terrain next to outpost bonuses alongside a few Cadre Fireblades should result in higher numbers.

Do you see the data? At turn 100, the Tau economy grown in the most optimal way possible can only afford 2 Ghostkeels and 4 Riptides! That is mega ultra pathetic.

And at turn 150 the best this build can do is 1 KV128 Stormsurge every 5 turns.

Just sad. Absolutely sad. And you see why Utopia tortures me so. Utopia completely annihilates the Tau economy to the point it cannot ever I mean EVER compete with other factions. With 21 resource buildings and 19 loyalty buildings the Tau economy is at 57.6% of a regular faction’s economy. So at mid-game the Tau with 3 cities will be outnumbered 2:1 against all factions.

And we can see why. Because every building has a loyalty cost in addition to the population loyalty cost, you need more than double the loyalty buildings of other factions just to break even. And because loyalty buildings come with a hefty 2 energy upkeep, it forces double the number of energy buildings, and the loyalty malus spiral just gets worse and worse and worse while you will never enjoy the quadratic growth other factions’ economies enjoy.

The solution? Ignoring upkeep!

So what’s the solution to Utopia? How to break free from Utopia’s shackles and cages? How to murder and butcher Utopia? The answer is… IGNORE UPKEEP.

Normally a unit’s upkeep resource is identical to its purchase resource. For example, a XV88 Broadside Battlesuit requires 40 food, 40 ore, and has an upkeep of 4 food. So if you’re at -100 food per turn, there’s no way you can ever buy a XV88 Broadside Battlesuit on the account of being unable to amass 40 food.

But Tau can purchase resources with influence. Which means the Tau, even at -100 food per turn, can buy 40 food with influence and immediately buy a XV88 Broadside Battlesuit despite being so deep in negative food! Which means Tau can flood the map with XV88 Broadside Battlesuits with 0 economic growth!

But this comes at a cost. When you’re in negative food, your pop growth speed is halved, and since pop growth speed is the bottleneck of your economic growth, your economy growth speed is halved. So with your growth halved and Utopia murdering your growth even further, your economy will be at 34.7% strength compared to regular economies at 40 buildings.

But in exchange, with 40 influence per turn and 4 barracks, you can build a XV88 Broadside Battlesuit every 2 turns forever and ever with 0 growth. I’d say that closes that 65.3% gap quite a bit.

But Broadsides cannot win the game for you. Not even close. What you need are KV128 Stormsurges which use ore as upkeep. Imagine building a KV128 Stormsurge every 2 turns! So the question is, can you ignore ore upkeep? After months of trying, I found that the answer is yes!

If you ignore ore upkeep your energy is halved. If your energy is halved, your loyalty, influence, and crisis centers are halved. To achieve a KV128 Stormsurge complete with 3 Battlesuit Support Systems every 2 turns you need 196 influence per turn and 10 Crisis centers. To get 196 influence per turn you need 60 influence buildings and 60 loyalty buildings. That’s 120 pops. With your halved growth speed… it’s never gonna happen.

But what if you don’t ignore energy? Then you only need 30 influence buildings, 27 loyalty buildings, and 24 energy buildings. That’s 81 pops, still too much.

But then I realized, with such a high influence upkeep, I can afford multiple Cadre Fireblades! Is it possible to get 100% of my loyalty from Cadre Fireblades? And the answer was… YES!

So from direct in-game testing, to achieve 196 influence per turn and build a KV128 Stormsurge every 2 turns, you only need

6 Cadre Fireblades

31 Influence buildings

12 energy buildings

3 Loyalty buildings

5 Xar’vesa Crisis Centres

If you notice, the total number of buildings is less than 54. Which means your 3 cities with only 2 shelters (18 max pop) can house all the buildings necessary to build a KV128 Stormsurge every 2 turns. And since you’re swimming in influence you can afford to use Proselytize to fill up all 18.

The in-game testing was done on grass terrain while intentionally avoiding outpost bonuses. So if you’re on a desert terrain next to a Jokero encampment then you should need even less buildings.

It is important to note that 1 KV128 Stormsurge every 2 turns is the literal global maximum production speed because you are limited to purchasing only 40 ore per turn. So there is literally no way to build KV128 Stormsurges any faster than one every 2 turns.

Build Order

City Placement

As you only need 6-7 tiles from each city, you have the luxury of placing the Tau cities at the literal corner of the map and as close together as possible. Use the above diagram to help you space your 1st city away enough from the edges for your future cities.

1st City

1. Research

2. Influence

3. Ore

4. Barracks

5. Barracks

6. Builder Drone

7. Builder Drone

8. Barracks

9. Energy

10. Barracks

11. Shelter

12. Loyalty

2nd City

1. Energy

2. Research

3. Influence

4. Ore

5. Shelter

6. Loyalty

7. Builder Drone

3rd City

1. Research

2. Influence

3. Energy

4. Ore

5. Shelter

6. Loyalty

7. Builder Drone


1:Wisdom Shared

1:Fio’xar Arsenal

2:MV1 Gun Drones

2:Many Mouths

3:Builder Drones (Wisdom Shared)

3:Ta’aun Totem (Wisdom Shared)

4:XV8 Crisis Battlesuit

4:Brachyuran’m Foundry

5:Extra Infantry Armor

5:Xar’vesa Crisis Centre

6:XV25 Stealth Battlesuits

2:Tio’ur’m Pods

6:Seeker Missile

7:Equal Under the Sky

7:Vectored Retro-Thrusters

8:XV88 Broadside Battlesuits

8:Stimulant Injector

1:Shan’ar’tol Stasis

9:Anthrazod Foundations

9:Advanced Targeting System

10:In Diversity, Unity

10:KV128 Stormsurge

3:A Shield For All

10:Shield Generator


1:Bonding Knife Ritual

8:Blast Phasing

6:Brachyuran Assembles

4:Mor’tonium Accelerators

8:Hammer of Wrath

7:Blacksun Filter


1. Build a total of 31 influence buildings

2. Build a total of 12 energy buildings

3. Build a Brachyuran’m Foundry in the first city only

4. Build 5 Xar’vesa Crisis Centres in the first city only, immediately turn them off after they’re built.

5. Build a grand total of 6 Cadre Fireblades. First 3 can be built just from stockpiled influence. Last three requires you to stall production and save up.

6. Once the 2nd and 3rd cities have a total of 17 influence/energy buildings and 1 loyalty, shutdown all other buildings including the Brachyuran’m Foundry

7. Use Proselytize to fill up all 18 pops on all 3 cities.

When paying for Cadre Fireblades, save excess food via queuing up Fire Warriors.

1. Buy Cadre Fire Blade 1, Queue Fire Warrior 1

2. Buy Cadre Fireblade 2

3. Cancel Fire Warrior 1, buy Cadre Fireblade 3

4. Buy Cadre Fireblade 4, Queue Fire Warrior 2

5. Buy Cadre Fireblade 5

6. Cancel Fire Warrior 2, buy Cadre Fireblade 3

If you’re building infantry at this time, then you’re going to have to juggle the Fire Warriors by cancelling them, queuing up the infantry, and then queuing up the Fire Warrior behind it.

If it wasn’t obvious already, to buy a KV128 Stormsurge with influence

1. Queue up a Ghostkeel

2. Next turn cancel the Ghostkeel and build a KV128 Stormsurge.

Once your KV128 Stormsurges start popping out and killing your ore income, buy 40 ore every single turn. And once you are at negative ore income, store all your ore by queuing up units, buildings and tile acquisitions and cancelling them as necessary.

The best battlesuit support systems on your KV128 Stormsurges are Stimulant Injector, Shield Generator, and Vectored Retro-Thrusters. The reason is because the defensive support systems virtually halve all damage inflicted on the Stormsurge while the offensive support systems do not give a noticeable difference in damage. It won’t let the KV128 Stormsurge one shot what usually requires 2 shots to kill, nor will it allow the KV128 Stormsurge to 2 shot what usually requires 3 shots to kill. So we give the KV128 Stormsurge increased movement instead.

If you follow my build, this will be your army.

Note: The following data was collected on grass terrain while intentionally avoiding all outpost bonuses.

My first Stormsurge came out at turn 125 and I had 12 at turn 173, which is when I reached 196 influence per turn. In other words, I managed to build a KV128 Stormsurge every 4 turns while simultaneously growing my economy to 196 influence. I actually produced a KV128 Stormsurge every 3 turns and then had to stall their production to build my 4th, 5th, and 6th Cadre Fireblades.

And that’s it! Enjoy smashing Utopia in the face over and over and over and over and flooding the map with KV128 Stormsurges to beat Impossible difficulty AIs!

This guide about 000: Gladius - Relics of War, Warhammer 40 was written by CuddilyWuddily. You can visit the original publication from this link. If you have any concerns about this guide, please don't hesitate to reach us here.

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