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View Full Version : Vampire Counts - Ghouls VS. Skeletons ?



Xarius
12-07-2010, 20:17
With the large changes to the Counts in 8th edition which of the two core units will come out on top? I felt that crypt ghouls had it in 7th edition but i'm not so sure now.

Malorian
12-07-2010, 20:20
I liked ghouls better in 7th, but in 8th I'm backing the skeletons (and heating the fact that I traded all mine away...).

-Skeletons can take banners which are needed in one mission.
-Skeletons have only 1 attack anyway so they don't lose anything when they support.
-With reduced magic, the tomb blade helps you keep up numbers without having to cast magic. Plus now that the units will start larger the problem of raising bigger than their starting size isn't as much as an issue.

NitrosOkay
12-07-2010, 20:28
Skeletons also can swift reform and take a 6+ ward save which, when you need to hold for a few turns against an elite unit, actually matters. Everything counts in large amounts. It also stacks with their armour save.

5+ armour vs toughness 4 is a tossup, better in some situations than others.

I'm using all skeletons in this edition and I've been having a lot of success.

I put Hellfire Banner on one of my skeleton hordes and to my immense amusement they killed a Skaven Hellpit Abomination (and flaming attacks deny too horrible to die). Roll those 6's!

Xarius
12-07-2010, 20:34
i'm not sure that 5+ armour will do much now or whether you'll be getting a full 5+ that much. Skellies dont lose attacks with the supporters but ghouls are pushing out a lot of attacks as it is.

shortlegs
13-07-2010, 03:52
If you want a unit that simply performs better, its ghouls. 4+AS from the skellies was a toss-up with T4 back in 7th, and the new parry save is a slight nerf, so ghouls win out. In terms of offensive power, there is absolutely no contest. And I disagree with the point that ghouls lose out more in support attacks since they are A2. Heck, offensively ghouls would have been balanced against skellies if they only had a single poison attack. They are essentially paying nothing for having the second attack. So instead of looking at it as if they lose out, why not look at it as if the entire first row got an extra attack for free, when compared to skellies at least?

However, skellies have a MAJOR benefit of being able to bring a standard to help increase break points and capture objectives. This alone makes them worth considering. So I guess at the end of the day, it depends on the rest of your army. If you have enough banners elsewhere say in zombies or GG units, then you should probably use ghouls. If not, it may be safer to use skellies.

salamander
13-07-2010, 08:00
I'm always going to include a horde unit of ghouls in every list, 40 poisoned attacks is just to good to not take.

Lordmonkey
13-07-2010, 08:26
I wonder about ghouls now. They can't have a standard, so they have one less CR and don't count for Blood and Glory. They can't have a musician, so are more vulnerable to being baited and flanked (musicians allow a reform after pursuit IIRC?),

Absoloutely devastating vs most things but they need support to work i think. This is why it's tricky to ask the question "Ghouls or skeletons?".

Kneedles
13-07-2010, 21:58
Remember ghouls can march 8 inches at the start with that ghoul-kin discipline

Malorian
13-07-2010, 22:02
Remember ghouls can march 8 inches at the start with that ghoul-kin discipline

Yes but unless you are against a gunline this isn't always the best thing...


If only there was a 'grave guard-kin' ;)

gamershell
13-07-2010, 22:48
I am trying to figure out, in what universe is the parry save worse than the +1 for HW/S we got in 7th?

NitrosOkay
14-07-2010, 00:01
and the new parry save is a slight nerf.

That's absurd. The 6+ ward save is in addition to the 5+ armour save, and can never be negated by strength.

bluemage
14-07-2010, 00:12
If you do the math, the ward save is a nerf in most cases. Assuming light armor and a shield. The ward is better against S6 and higher. They're both equal against S5. And the ward save is worse against S4 and lower.

NitrosOkay
14-07-2010, 00:15
If you do the math, the ward save is a nerf in most cases. Assuming light armor and a shield. The ward is better against S6 and higher. They're both equal against S5. And the ward save is worse against S4 and lower.

A nerf by like under a single percent against only certain enemies. It's negligible.

bluemage
14-07-2010, 00:19
Against S3 which is seems like the most common strength value in 8th its 50% versus ~44% with the parry. The parry save also won't stack with any other sort of ward save.

I think the skeletons will be better against rank and file, but the ghoul poison will help out against monsterous infantry and monsters. I say bring both.

soots
14-07-2010, 00:21
They seriously need to rejig undead core costs to be in line with the massive nerfs.

Skeletons = 5pts each. Ghouls 6 pts each.

NitrosOkay
14-07-2010, 00:26
Against S3 which is seems like the most common strength value in 8th its 50% versus ~44% with the parry. The parry save also won't stack with any other sort of ward save.

I think the skeletons will be better against rank and file, but the ghoul poison will help out against monsterous infantry and monsters. I say bring both.

A hellfire banner for 10 points means Skeletons ignore the regen saves of big monsters. Ghouls can't take that.

I think Ghouls and Skeletons are mostly dead even these days. Take what you like or what you have.

Maoriboy007
14-07-2010, 00:30
They seriously need to rejig undead core costs to be in line with the massive nerfs.

Skeletons = 5pts each. Ghouls 6 pts each.

Skeletons should be 7 points 8 with spears. Ghouls are probably fairly costed at 8 points now, I always thought they were worth 10 in 7th.

Sifal
14-07-2010, 00:35
Bear in mind that ghouls are initiative 3 so will strike simultaneously with humans and before ogres, orcs, dwarfs, Saurus etc whereas skeletons are only initiative 2 and will be striking last more than ghouls. It's not an insignificant factor. Ghouls and skeletons are built for different jobs IMO so match the troop to the role required. If you're determined to take only one of them then ghouls are better allrounders with greater potential to do well against high toughness stuff. If you can get asf off from a corpse cart on multiple units of ghouls they can really rock. If it might be game changing then throw 5+ dice at miasma of deathly vigour.

NitrosOkay
14-07-2010, 00:40
Bear in mind that ghouls are initiative 3 so will strike simultaneously with humans and before ogres, orcs, dwarfs, Saurus etc whereas skeletons are only initiative 2 and will be striking last more than ghouls. It's not an insignificant factor. Ghouls and skeletons are built for different jobs IMO so match the troop to the role required. If you're determined to take only one of them then ghouls are better allrounders with greater potential to do well against high toughness stuff. If you can get asf off from a corpse cart on multiple units of ghouls they can really rock. If it might be game changing then throw 5+ dice at miasma of deathly vigour.

Initiative certainly matters less than in 7th though. Unless you've already taken heavy casualties step up means initiative is meaningless.

bluemage
14-07-2010, 00:41
A hellfire banner for 10 points means Skeletons ignore the regen saves of big monsters. Ghouls can't take that.

I forgot about the hellfire banner. But against ogres, giants, beastmen stuff, and dragons, the poison will win out. Buts its really more nitpicking. They'll both play different roles, and while they should probably cost less then they currently do in 8th, they both have different roles to play. And not knowing my opponents army, I would take both.

Sifal
14-07-2010, 00:57
Initiative certainly matters less than in 7th though. Unless you've already taken heavy casualties step up means initiative is meaningless.

It means a lot if you're fielding ghouls in small units, 12 or so strong. Striking first also matters because it means you might be able to kill enough of an enemy unit that they can't step up and you get fewer attacks back on the ghouls. Striking order doesn't matter for very big units but it matters to everything else and ultimately striking first, as a rule, will result in fewer casualties back.
In fact, saying that stepping up makes initiative irrelevant is only true if two large ranked units are fighting each other in the front and neither could take enough casualties to lose any attacks back. It matters in all other cases.

shortlegs
14-07-2010, 03:37
I am trying to figure out, in what universe is the parry save worse than the +1 for HW/S we got in 7th?


That's absurd. The 6+ ward save is in addition to the 5+ armour save, and can never be negated by strength.
Absurd? Please make sure you yourself are correct before calling others absurd.

For your benefit, assuming a basic Skellie at T3 with HW+S, the chances for a hit to wound it is:

S3:
7th ed: 1/2 x 1/2 = 1/4 or 25%
8th ed: 1/2 x 2/3 x 5/6 = 27.8%

S4:
7th ed: 2/3 x 2/3 = 44.4%
8th ed: 2/3 x 5/6 x 5/6 = 46.3%

S5:
7th ed: 5/6 x 5/6 = 69.4%
8th ed: 5/6 x 5/6 = 69.4% --------> only at str5 does it become equal

S6:
7th ed: 5/6 = 83.3% --------> at Str 6 and above parry is better
8th ed: 5/6 x 5/6 = 69.4%


A nerf by like under a single percent against only certain enemies. It's negligible.
So by the math above, you can see that the difference is MORE than a single percentage, and it is against MORE enemies you will see nowadays since the number of str3-4 enemies will very likely outnumber str6 or higher guys given the popularity of infantry blocks in 8th.

Absurd? I think not.


Initiative certainly matters less than in 7th though. Unless you've already taken heavy casualties step up means initiative is meaningless.
I would agree only that for big blocks where casualties wouln't affect the number of strikes you get back, that initiative doesn't matter, but ONLY for such circumstances. I would, however, find it laughable if you think initiative was actually important in 7th, where charging meant you're striking first and the vast majority of combats was over by the first round.


A hellfire banner for 10 points means Skeletons ignore the regen saves of big monsters. Ghouls can't take that.
Right... So you'll bring hellfire for your SKELLIES... when they honestly can't even fight well enough to really make use of the benefits against monsters.. But even if you DO use hellfire on them, the fact that ghouls have poison is just so much better. Let's just say against everyone's favourite T5 regenerating beast (varghulf, hydra, HPA etc), 4 infantry models get to strike.

skellies with hellfire:
8 attacks, 4 hits, 0.67 wounds

ghouls:
12 attacks, 2 poison and 4 regular hits, for a total of 2.67 wounds, ot 1.33 wounds after regen

I rest my case.

NitrosOkay
14-07-2010, 04:06
Yes, it's 2.6% more effective against S3 in 7th. A tremendous difference to be sure.

I don't really know what else I'd use hellfire banner on. My Grave Guard have Banner of the Barrows and the Battle Standard is Flag of Blood Keep or Drakenhof Banner.

The flaming banner also makes characters in the unit flaming, for what it's worth.

I didn't mean to imply initiative is useless.

You've made your point. If you want to take ghouls they are undeniably better at killing things than skeletons.

Ridarsin
14-07-2010, 04:35
I am bringing a horde unit of ghouls (40 of them) and one unit of 30 skeletons. I am finding out that skeletons are the new zombies of eighth; rarely winning combat. Even with my kitted out combat Lord the skeletons were losing round after round with Bret knights (I charged them). Ghouls on the other hand were only enhanced with my Lord in the unit and has obliterated anything it touches.

My problem with the tomb blades is that it if you place it on a vampire it becomes worthless the first turn that the unit is in combat.

eyescrossed
14-07-2010, 08:32
My problem with the tomb blades is that it if you place it on a vampire it becomes worthless the first turn that the unit is in combat.

Hmm... How so?

Sifal
14-07-2010, 13:05
Hmm... How so?

I think he means because the vampire will be striking first and the tomb blade wounds wasted because no skeletons will have died yet. So only worthless if the skeleton unit goes in full strength and the vamp does strike first. Chances are they would have taken shooting or magic damage already. There is an argument to be made for a vampire with either blood drinker or tomb blade with the accursed armour for minus 3 initiative so that wounds caused will be bringing back models more efficiently

Xarius
14-07-2010, 20:02
I still think I'll stick with ghouls but what most people havent brought up is SPEARS, this gives another rank an attack thus making the ghouls extra attack invalid but they then lose out on parry.

Ridarsin
14-07-2010, 20:28
I think he means because the vampire will be striking first and the tomb blade wounds wasted because no skeletons will have died yet. So only worthless if the skeleton unit goes in full strength and the vamp does strike first. Chances are they would have taken shooting or magic damage already. There is an argument to be made for a vampire with either blood drinker or tomb blade with the accursed armour for minus 3 initiative so that wounds caused will be bringing back models more efficiently

Thanks for explaining that better for me. I have thought about the Tomb Blade + Accursed Armor combo, but it would almost be better to invest in a necromancer w/ 1 spell (IoN) to cover wound recovery (55pts to 50pts). Plus you would gain added channeling.

Another problem is that (unless it's HE's or ASF banner DE) casting VHD on that unit or corpse cart bound spell it also makes the Tomb Blade voided the first turn in combat.

Why are your opponents shooting at skeleton's? :wtf: My opponents always go for Grave Guard/Black Coach/Vargulf/Black Knights/Blood Knights/Ghouls before Skeletons. Skeletons should be the second to last target your opponent should be shooting. ;)

Mandragola
14-07-2010, 21:54
I think it might not be an either/or thing any more. In 7th, with the amount of summoning you would do, then for sure you would want to have just one type. In 8th you just aren't going to be able to spam summon anything like as much, so you may as well mix and match. That gives you an army with a lot more flexibility as well, and that has to be a good thing.

Malorian
14-07-2010, 22:01
I think it might not be an either/or thing any more. In 7th, with the amount of summoning you would do, then for sure you would want to have just one type. In 8th you just aren't going to be able to spam summon anything like as much, so you may as well mix and match. That gives you an army with a lot more flexibility as well, and that has to be a good thing.

That's very true, plus the fact that since you need to fill up on core with them that typically the units are so big that you don't need a mastery to make them bigger, and once you aren't taking a mastery you can feel free to mix and match :)