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Gue'vesa Auxiliaries

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Gue'vesa soldiers

Gue'vesa (literally, "Human Helpers") are Human soldiers who serve as Auxiliaries in the Tau military.[2]


Human auxiliary troopers are a fairly common sight along the western fringes of Tau space, in particular on those worlds contested during the Damocles Gulf Crusade. The Tau proved a hardier foe than anticipated by Imperial forces and, as the offensive stalled, they were forced to hurriedly withdraw in response to the far greater threat presented by the arrival of Hive Fleet Behemoth in nearby sectors.[1] Gue'la throughout the empire are often the descendants of those abandoned Imperial Guard troops or the colonies captured in the aftermath of their defenders' retreat. For them, fate had dictated that the rule of the Adeptus Terra be replaced by loyalty to the collectivist Tau Empire and the ruling Ethereal caste.[1]

Those humans who have embraced the Greater Good in this way are provided with the technology required to prevail on the Tau frontier and granted limited production capabilities, allowing them to construct equipment ranging from simple farming tools to a copy of the standard issue Imperial lasgun. In times of war, the Tau allow the Gue'vesa access to more advanced weaponry such as Pulse rifles, Pulse Carbines and other, more specialized equipment including gear like Markerlights, EMP Grenades, and tranquility wafers. These auxiliaries have become a (usually) respected part of the Tau military, filling a tactical niche between the barbaric Kroot and the mainstay of Tau armies, the Fire Warrior teams. Gue'vesa may lack the close combat savagery of the Kroot but they are fully capable of using the more advanced examples of Tau technology, zealously doing so to further the cause of the Greater Good.[1][7]

Tau attitudes towards Gue'vesa vary wildly from individual to individual and sept to sept. Humans are often regarded as dangerous, passionate, ancient, or crooked.[7] Some leaders call them more than mercenaries but less than trusted allies, while others are closer to their subordinate humans than fellow Tau.[6b][7] At its worst the Tau uncertainty around humanity has lead to atrocities like the massacre Gue'vesa following the Fourth and Fifth Sphere of Expansion[2][8][9], involuntary re-education,[11] and rumored mass sterilizations on, among others, Kronus,[10] Phaedra,[5] and Velk'Han Sept.[11]

Still, life fighting for the Tau Empire is often more rewarding than what many Imperial soldiers can expect, so the ranks of Gue'vesa units are never without foreign recruits. New inductees are typically first screened and given any necessary remedial therapy before being sent to an auxiliary academy, such as Kir'qath on Sa'cea Sept, and from there to an active unit.[7] Not all recruits are the same; on occasion T'au forces have inducted mutants and abhumans as Gue'vesa, notably Saathlaa and O'grinn during the conflict with the Imperium on Phaedra.[5][6]

Regardless of origin, Gue'vesa are eager to prove themselves loyal to their masters beyond simple tests on the teachings of the Greater Good, commonly shaving their heads, painting their skin blue, tattooing themselves with T'au symbols, and even carving their commander's heraldry into their faces.[5][7] Freedom to worship as part of the Imperial Cult can be expected in most units and postings, though as soldiers advance up the ranks pressure to set the Emperor aside may increase.[4]


Rank Translation
Gue'vesa'la[1] Human Helper Warrior
Gue'vesa'ui[1] Human Helper Veteran
Gue'vesa'vres[3] Trusted Human Helper

Gue'vesa can also be called "Janissaries", while squads are often known as Clusters, the members of which can refer to each other by their ranks, as "Friend," or as "Brother" or "Sister." Squad leaders are similarly addressed either by their rank, "First Friend," or "Cluster Leader."[6c][6d][7]

Known Gue'vesa Units

Notable Gue'vesa

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Vehicles DevilfishDrone HarbingerHammerheadPiranhaSky RayTetraSwordfish
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Auxiliaries Kroot ShaperKroot Carnivore SquadKroot HoundKrootoxKnarlocGreat KnarlocVespid StingwingGue'vesa
Special Characters Aun'vaAun'shiShadowsunFarsightDarkstriderLongstrike