Let me make the case:
+ Goblins with shield and hand weapon have better saves.
+ Night goblins do get to take nets for 45 points which about 83% of the time amounts to Toughness 4 instead of 3. This also makes the armor save resilient against high strength models . . . 83% of the time. But if you play 6 turns and grind with more than one unit, you're gonna miss. And if you grind the same combat, you re-roll nets each player turn, so I wonder if that one round of self-netting balances out the rounds of -1 to Strength.
+And remember, nets don't protect you against all those Strength 3 shooting attacks you're going to take whereas the Goblin's Light Armor helps.
+And 10 point Nasty Skulkers can keep a few of the enemy attacks off of your rank-and-file to prolong your survival. And 3 Attacks w/ ASF and KB ain't bad.
As for points:
40 Night goblins with full command and nets (and no fanatics) = 195 points.
You get 47 goblins with shields and full command for the same.
If your 40 night goblins want 3 fanatics for 75 more points that brings you to 270 points. Compare that to those original 40 goblins with shields and cmd that cost 170 points--a whopping 100 point difference! Although the unit has less to offer, it is a more reliable tarpit--no boomerang fanatics in your way or ill-timed self-netting. I'm starting to think fanatics and nets are over-priced, moreso because any given turn is Russian Roulette with these guys. 100 points per unit is a lot to gamble with.
Consider that for 100 points that unit could have its very own Goblin Warboss (lead 8 for steadfast) with an Obsidian Amulet (Magic Resistance 2 for the unit) and light armor & shield. And we all know the skulkers/characters front rank to block attacks back from hitting the unit, right? Am I missing something or is that one hard to mitigate anvil? Another option for that price is a Black Orc Bigboss for Ld 8 and Quell Animosity. Or for points denial simply add 30 more goblins for a 70 goblin 10x7 mega-horde if that's how you like to roll (Malorian). Or take the 100 points elsewhere and get an Orc Boar Chariot or Rock Lobber. 100 points get you a lot in the O&G army.
Thoughts? Has anyone else fielded goblins rather than NGs? Or tried both? I've used them very rarely for Nasty Skulker novelty acts but that's it really. But I'm still new to WHFB so please tell me why I'm way off the mark here if I am.
Note: I've intentionally ignored combat res for the sake of survivability to keep that steadfast and rank bonus as long as possible since this is a tarpit unit. Or was that a mistake?