rvd1ofakind’s Chaos Daemons Elites, Fast Attack and Heavy Support Units Review

rvd1ofakind is back with a review of the Elites, Fast Attack and Heavy Support choices from the Daemons Codex. As always, check the Tactics Corner for more great reviews and articles!

I use 4 things to review these units:

  1. Tournament results
  2. Mathhammer
  3. Top player opinion
  4. Personal experience

Tournament results: (deamon prince is mostly thousand sons)

Mathhammer: (everything is by pts value, so when I say something is durable and you see it is T3 6++, remember – without points cost, the stats mean nothing)

So after the Troops and HQs let‘s start on… as I like to call them “the others…”. I‘ll be comparing almost all of them to troops because they‘re usually just troops on a mount, chariot or mutated to beasts. Disregarding datasheets completely, let‘s look at what troops have over everything else:

  1. Objective secured
  2. Needed for the best detachment to get CP – battalion
  3. Smallest bases – great for moving between enemy models to snipe characters, easier to maneuver and fit the most bases in combat range
  4. Largest squads – great for board control and buffing with “every model gets +attack” type of stuff and hard to get “kill one” off of if you position them properly by stringing them out and removing them out of range.
  5. Infantry – being able to interact with all terrain most efficiently and walk through walls
  6. They have 1 wound allowing you to make a 1 wound model army with characters so your opponent‘s anti-tank is wasted

That‘s a LOT of positives for troops. Those Elites, Fast Attacks and Heavy Supports will have to work really hard to beat that… well…

FYI: a lot of the points follow-ups after ratings might seem a bit too far, however most of the units can‘t be spammed that hard because of the rule of 3 and non-troop chaos units are so much worse than troop ones that a lot of top players have abandoned chaos and moved to eldar, nids, etc. because even a year+ after the CSM codex and after going up to 5 pts it is still 2000pts minus hqs divided by cultists and tzangors to get the best list(Nick Nanavati‘s opinion). So those non-troops need to be CRAZY good to see play or the troops in general(not just chaos) need to be toned down a lot.

Bloodcrushers:

Description:

  • They (still) can‘t footslog as they have 8‘‘ movement with no way to increase it. They have to deep strike and they have a 3D6 charge if they take the banner and use 1cp to buff it. Sounds familiar? It’s the bloodletter (on a horse) bomb (except worse in almost every way possible). In CA they’ve gained 1 wound and stayed the same pts wise. Buffs: DP (great, re-roll dem 1s, you want Skullreaver anyway), Herald (str 7 doesn’t change much as with their 0 AP mount attacks, they don’t really want to be punching vehicles and monsters), Skulltaker (makes them 2+ to hit which is more important as they don’t get that for just having a big squad)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Bad. Better than Bloodletters against lasguns (barely) and bolters (almost equal) and a lot worse vs anything with AP or more than 1 damage.
  • Damage: Average. A squad of 30 letters (235 pts) will do more damage fighting twice than a squad of 9 Bloodcrushers (448 pts) that are buffed by Skulltaker against any target. Ouch.

Personal opinion:

  • One of the worst units in the book… still. They are just (a lot) worse Bloodletters. The only things they have going for them is that they cost less CP per point to deepstrike if you take a max squad and they are harder to kill as a max squad unit than a max squad of letters… but not by much. Certainly not enough to make up for a gigantic list of cons over Bloodletters (which by the way, aren’t a Meta breaking unit either so that’s how far down crushers are).

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. It would have to go to 47->25pts so they would be a better bloodletter – which is what they need to be since they lose all the troops perks.

Flesh hounds:

Description:

  • 10” move footslogging beat sticks that can deny the witch. CA added the ability for every 5 dogs to buy one auto hitting 8” Assault 1 S4 AP0 D1 weapon for 9pts(since a regular flamer with D6 attacks instead costs 6pts… this could be the worst upgrade in the game). Buffs: DP (great, re-roll dem 1s), Herald (great, str 6 makes them better against T3 screens – which is what they’ll usually fight)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw almost no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Average
  • Damage: Average

Personal opinion:

  • Don’t let the 10” move fool you into thinking they’re fast. If you start them in LoS – they will die to the enemy shooting. If you hide them out of LoS (first floor of ruin usually), they’ll lose about 6” of that movement running around the wall. Since efficiency wise they are just average – that leaves only 1 thing: deny the witch. Now that’s not bad, however daemons usually run a bunch of psykers anyway and those can’t be shot, unlike hounds. Their main competition – Karanak is what should be used instead.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 15->8 pts to be viable in the cultist/tzangor world as doggos have almost no synergy with the army in terms of stratagems. Also the “flamer” upgrade should cost 1.

Skull Cannon:

Description:

  • Artillery that can kinda defend itself. Got -10 pts in CA. A DP can buff them but you probably want the DP in the front lines.

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Average
  • Damage: Below Average

Personal opinion:

  • -10 points won’t bring this unit into competitive. It’s still just a worse Helverin: easier to kill, does less damage, is less reliable, has less range, moves slower… and Helverins aren’t even good.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 90->60 pts to be efficient. Need a rule change to be taken in squads.

Flamers:

Description:

  • Fragile flyers with 12” flamers (shocked face). Usually deepstrike (as they get shot off the board otherwise), flame and die. Got -3pts in CA. Buffs: Herald (going from S4 to S5 is pretty good as these guys wanna shoot something better than the screen. The herald can buff them with Flickering Flames (+1 to wound) meaning you’ll be wounding most things you want to shoot on a 2).

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • #32 chaos unit

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Below Average
  • Damage: Amazing against screen units but you’re using an elite to clear the screen? That’s a bad pts trade

Personal opinion:

  • Basically a downgrade from Pinks. Worse durability, same-ish damage, worse range, don’t get buffed by a DP. They’re not that far off from being great but Pinks existing just make them useless. The biggest problem is that flamers want to hit something other than cheap screen units because hitting the screen will always be a bad trade, however with range 12” they only have 3” range over the first unit (screen) so that’s really bad.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 25->18 pts to be comparable to Pinks. They’d then be a scary bomb to drop, however a proper army could still just screen them out for 3 turns and then stomp them.

Exalted Flamers:

Description:

  • A character with some strong close range shooting. Got -20pts in CA. Buffs: Herald (to S10 is situational, and flickering flames is better cast elsewhere), DP (just grab the already good Tsons DP)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Bad (as tends to be with characters)
  • Damage: Above average

Personal opinion:

  • One of the most interesting units in this review. Their anti-horde weapon will usually not be used because you’re paying 45pts for 1 more AP over an already bad Flamer. The anti-tank weapon is not bad by the stats, however it’s held back a ton by being heavy and only 18” range. So the soonest you’ll use it is turn 2, usually at BS4+ to get in range. From then on though – it’s really good as the enemy can’t really interact with it while it keeps blasting away.

RATING:

  • Situational. Dropping 20 pts really helped.

Screamers:

Description:

  • The fastest model in the book. Very fragile and somewhat hard-hitting with an ability to do a mortal wound or two (maybe snipe a character?). Got -3pts in CA. Buffs: Herald (can’t really keep up), DP (grab the amazing Tsons DP, these guys can screen for him in combat)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw almost no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Bad
  • Damage: Average

Personal opinion:

  • Wow these guys pay a premium for their speed. Probably still getting punished for the Screamer star in 7th. They are kinda useful to help your big monsters surround a unit but that’s about it. Their mobility is cute but when you can just deepstrike/warptime/nurgling all over the place with chaos – it’s not really that important. WS4 for a CC unit is really bad.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 28->15 pts to have a place as assassins that jump over the screen and punch something important with an even amount of wounds.

Burning Chariot:

Description:

  • A fast-ish short range/melee hybrid. Buffs: Herald (to S10 is situational, and flickering flames is better cast elsewhere), DP (grab the amazing Tsons DP, these guys can screen for him in combat)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Bad
  • Damage: Average

Personal opinion:

  • Wow these guys are bad. Giant base, very squishy, meh damage. The only redeeming quality is chanting horrors but that’s not even close to make them viable.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 110->60 to be efficient but even then they don’t really have a place. Need a rule change to be taken in squads.

Beast of Nurgle:

Description:

  • A slow durable beat stick that can deal mortal wounds when units fall back from them. Buffs: Herald (not really necessary since they re-roll wounds anyway), DP (sure, you probably want one anyway), Snaily the Snail (a must have with big beast units)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw almost no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Above average but plaguebearers are still a lot better
  • Damage: Bad

Personal opinion:

  • The fall back ability is almost meaningless. You pretty much always want to surround stuff in combat anyway. So the strategy is to bait their one model into leaving so combat so it dies if you roll a 4+? I’m confused. This ability does work on FLY units so that’s something, I guess? So this basically leaves them as slow beat sticks with almost no damage? Yeah, they’re bad.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 34->22 to be efficient with Snaily’s help and to be somewhat comparable to plaguebearers.

Plague Drones:

Description:

  • A faster durable beat stick. Got a 6 pts increase in CA. Buffs: Herald (not really necessary since they re-roll wounds anyway), DP (sure, you probably want one anyway

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw almost no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Average
  • Damage: Below average

Personal opinion:

  • I’ve seen Plaguebearer armies taking them and I was incredibly confused as to why they give their opponents something to shoot their anti-tank weapons at. They barely move faster than plaguebearers, their bases are big, the damage output is bad – I don’t get it. Post FAQ FLY nerf they are now incredibly clunky around terrain as well. And then they saw another 6pts slapped on to them in CA? OK?

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 40->24 to be efficient and comparable to plaguebearers.

Seekers:

Description:

  • The book’s turn 1 charger. Got -4pts in CA. Buffs: Herald (must have on steed to keep up), DP (won’t keep up unless seekers live a turn – doubtful)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Average
  • Damage: Average

Personal opinion:

  • 14”+4.5”+8.5”= 27”. That right there is a turn 1 charge on average rolls… that’s if you get turn 1 of course. Where in lies the problem. However 27” avoids the 24” range anti-horde weapons so the enemy usually has to come to you to shoot them which is them coming into your melee army – so that’s not even that bad because if Slaanesh daemons make it into melee – good luck killing them with their minuses to hit and minus attacks. Honestly these seem pretty legit, however the Meta kinda hates them due to the 2 damage weapons around in the top 3 lists (castellan, lootas and dark reapers).

RATING:

  • Situational-competitive. Remains to be seen…

Fiends of Slaanesh:

Description:

  • Purely a utility unit. Non-fly units can’t fall back from it and psykers within 12” get a -1 on psychic tests. Buffs: Herald, DP (not essential, fiends are terrible damage wise anyway)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Bad
  • Damage: Bad

Personal opinion:

  • 14”+3.5”+7”= 24.5”. That’s a way less reliable turn 1 charge than the seekers. Since this unit is very inefficient it is completely reliant on his abilities. The no fall back ability is actually very rarely useful. Most of the time you can surround a unit in combat as you only need 3 models to do so. Also you need to keep the fiend within 1” of the opposing unit so the opponent can just pull casualties in morale away from the fiends and retreat anyway so you can’t actually attack them to risk that. Also fiends often just get shot off the board or just punched off because they’re pretty fragile. You need to run a big squad to avoid that and that’s investing way too much in an inefficient unit that’s only situationally useful. The 12” aura is just too small. Since fiend will very rarely live past turn 3 the opponent will have a screen and psykers about 3+ inches away from it. So when fiends hit the screen, the psykers can just advance away from them if needed.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They’d have to cost 42->30 to be somewhat efficient if you value their abilities. I do not value the abilities so I’d only take them if they were about on par with troops – which is about at 20ppm.

Slaanesh chariots:

Description:

  • A footslogging beat stick. Buffs: Herald, DP (not essential, but you need them anyway and they move at about the same speed)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Average. Hellflayer is bad
  • Damage: Above average against screens. Chariots are bad against anything else, Hellflayers are average against anything else.

Personal opinion:

  • So they can’t charge turn 1. They have a giant base (that’s very bad), they’re not durable (so they give up kill one and kill more easily), they don’t do good damage. They’re just really really bad.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. Hellflayer needs to be 70->50, Seeker Chariot needs to be 50->35, and Exalted Chariot needs to be 80 -> 60. The thing they need the most though is to be taken in squads to not give away kills too easily.

Furies:

Description:

  • A semi-fast flying beat stick that gets a god ability depending on their mark. Buffs: Herald, DP (not essential, but you need them anyway and they move at about the same speed)

Tournament results and top player opinion:

  • Saw no competitive play

Mathhammer:

  • Durability: Below average even with the Nurgle mark
  • Damage: Average against screens and terrible against everything else. With the Khorne mark they become pretty good at killing screens but still bad against everything else.

Personal opinion:

  • Not efficient so that leaves abilities and mobility. However there are a lot of units more mobile than them in the army and the ability to kill a single model on a 4+ if its unit fails a morale check is meaningless. They have FLY so they could be used if a chaos gunline could be a thing but it’s just not as efficient as imperium or t’au gunlines.

RATING:

  • Sub-optimal. They need to be about 8->6 points. Then they’d be faster daemonettes with no synergy.

 

So there you see the problem that chaos faces. The troops are just way too good and they have a massive amount of troop perks to boost. I don’t think the answer is to lower every non-troop in pts cost. The answer is somewhere between a new codex, a basic game rule change or an increase in troops cost across the board for almost all factions.
The last article will have the big boys: Greater Daemons and the Soul Grinder.

And remember, Frontline Gaming sells gaming products at a discount, every day in their webcart!

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29 Responses to “rvd1ofakind’s Chaos Daemons Elites, Fast Attack and Heavy Support Units Review”

  1. abusepuppy December 29, 2018 8:22 am #

    >Flesh Hounds need to be an 8pt multiwound unit with three attacks, good Str/WS, and the ability to shut down enemy psykers

    >Chariots need to be 6W models for 35pts

    ….Yeah okay. Seems reasonable and fair. I can see no reason anyone might object to any of that.

    • Reecius
      Reecius December 29, 2018 10:59 am #

      Yeah, I thought the same thing, those are extremely aggressive expectations. The idea is balance, not broken.

      • rvd1ofakind December 29, 2018 11:40 am #

        Which is why I wrote the FYI at the start and the things at the bottom. Pts changes won’t solve this problem. They are just “here’s the pts value for the unit to be efficient when compared to troops”.

        I listened to Nick talk about chaos. It’s super depressing. It’s almost no matter how crazy a unit is, if it’s not not a 1w troop or a character – it will make your list worse if you want the best chaos list possible.

        The next review (big guys) is more possitive.

        • Reecius
          Reecius December 29, 2018 11:45 am #

          I mean, not telling you what to say or anything, buddy, just adding in my two cents.

      • rvd1ofakind December 29, 2018 11:43 am #

        Same reason why marine bodies didn’t drop in pts. They need new rules.

        • Reecius
          Reecius December 29, 2018 11:52 am #

          They do. The classic Marine statline and rules just don’t reflect their backstory at this point.

          • abusepuppy December 29, 2018 7:06 pm
            #

            They never really have, unfortunately. GW wants Space Marines to be THE MOST STRONGEREST BESTEST MANS but also wants them to be the easy entry-level faction but also wants to make mans that are _even strongerer_ but also Space Marines are still the best. Their expectations are so conflicted, there is no possible way to resolve everything, and for four editions running now it’s fallen out that basic SM troopers end up being kinda shitty overall because of these conflicting philosophies.

  2. black mage December 29, 2018 10:56 am #

    did i miss something or i dont see Troops review? HQ and troops are the best demons have

    • Reecius
      Reecius December 29, 2018 10:57 am #

      Go to the Tactics Corner to get the Troops review.

  3. Paul Winters December 30, 2018 10:31 am #

    >The no fall back ability is actually very rarely useful. Most of the time you can surround a unit in combat as you only need 3 models to do so.

    What I find Fiends of Slaanesh useful for is to tie up units that you don’t want to kill like tanks. As Slaanesh Daemons have trouble killing vehicles. Fiends in units of 1, they can also take advantage of blocking terrain to avoid being shot because they have such a small table footprint. If your opponent knows what the Fiends do they are also something of a distraction Carnifex.

    I agree though with Disrupting Song. It has never come into play in any of my games.

    >Sub-optimal. Hellflayer needs to be 70->50, Seeker Chariot needs to be 50->35, and Exalted Chariot needs to be 80 -> 60. The thing they need the most though is to be taken in squads to not give away kills too easily.

    For the Slaanesh Chariots. I was hoping the Hellflayer and Exalted Seeker Chariot would be 5 additional points cheaper than what the Chapter Approved lower them too. 50 pts for the Seeker Chariot is reasonable. It is Slaanesh after all it supposed to be somewhat fragile. Lowering their points further wouldn’t change the fact they are going to die easily.

    I do think the Hellflayer’s Bladed Axel is overvalued by GW compared to another similar Chaos Daemons unit like the Skull Cannon. Filling the same light vehicle slayer role.

    • rvd1ofakind December 30, 2018 11:57 am #

      That’s the problem with slaanesh chariots. They are more durable than damaging. The new ork wartrike is what I would expect the chariots to be. Crap durability. Amazing damage.
      The current chariots have no role except for “give enemy easier kill one and kill more”. Same reason why ork buggies and other light vehicles don’t see play.

      • Paul Winters December 30, 2018 2:31 pm #

        The chariots do some things. I think their value though is really within a Slaanesh Daemon heavy army.

        – They have a base S4 piercing claws. With a Herald they are S5. Slaanesh has very few sources of high strength attacks. S5 clears T4 screens easier. It also wounds T8 on a 5+.

        – The base size can beneficial to block avenues for vehicles or Knights. Allowing your infantry to maneuver to more advantageous charge positions through ruins.

        – T5 is better for tanking overwatch for the more fragile Daemonettes or Seekers. They also have a 4+ save which is rare in an army of 5++

        – They have minor shooting. For an army that does not participate in the shooting phase at all, it is helpful.

        – Each chariot variant has a lot of attacks for a single model which gels well with Locus of Grace stratagem.

        That being said they are not perfect or highly competitive but there isn’t a single Slaanesh daemon unit I would call “competitive”.

        • rvd1ofakind December 30, 2018 9:46 pm #

          And about the first point – daemonettes still do more damage to higher T targets because they just have a ton of attacks. The S5 means nothing.
          The big base is only a con. For that amount of pts you can fill a bigger “base” with daemonettes.
          And the Locus of grace works a lot better on daemonettes, even seekers. The “1 model with a lot of attacks” part doesn’t matter as the aura affects the entire unit.

          The other pros for them only matter in a pure slaanesh daemon army – which is a huge limitation (kudos for doing that still). Since I freely mix and match between daemons(they’re all in the same book), those pros don’t apply to me. Which is why the chariots get the sub-optimal rating.

          I think Seekers, daemonettes and HQs (And maybe even KoS) actually could have a place in competitive. I don’t see chariots ever making there when ITC “kill one” and “kill more” is a thing and when the edition is as deadly as it is now to light vehicles.

  4. Brakhal December 30, 2018 4:10 pm #

    It surprises me how many daemon players despise flamers. Played with finese, they’re a pretty good unit to clean chaff quickly, ensuring board control. Just don’t DR them, and be patient: they’re small fast models, easy to hide on bloses until the time is right.

    • rvd1ofakind December 30, 2018 9:52 pm #

      They don’t have a big threat range. 12+12 isn’t great. Here’s what you’ll ever flame against good players:
      guardsmen
      cultists
      boyz/grots
      etc.

      It’s really hard for flamers to get high value targets without exposing themselves on the board. For them to be on the board they have to be out of LoS(usually bottom floor of a ruin) as they die to a stiff breeze for the amount of pts they cost. If they’re not in LoS they often just get charged (since they can’t overwatch without LoS) and killed. Against an army without fast/deepstriking melee they could be “zoners” but they just die to indirect fire. And if the opponent has no indirect fire or fast moving melee – it’s not really a competitive game so why are you worrying about efficient units :p Take all the flamers, chariots,etc that you want.

      • Brakhal December 31, 2018 4:58 am #

        I’d rather take movement 12″ with flight + autohit range 12″ over movement 6″ + 24″ (or even 36″) range, as a bigger movement + flight opens up a whole universe of control shenanigans. 12+12 is not great, but it is pretty good in good hands. The autohit + to wound sinergies makes them a lot reliable also. I don’t see them dying that fast against indirect fire thanks to the 4++, being 25 points per model. I mean, if they end up exposed they will disappear in a moment, but they won’t vanish just with a few basilisk or wyvern shots (Hive Guard can be a real problem tho).

        Again, I’m surprised daemon players rate them that bad. I wouldn’t say they are meta breakers, and maybe there’s no place for them in the average plaguebearer spam list, but the reliability and speed is worth the 25 point cost.

  5. Charlie A. December 31, 2018 10:45 am #

    Should Chaos Spawn have been included in this?

    • abusepuppy December 31, 2018 11:14 am #

      Daemons can’t take Chaos Spawn as unit, they can only create them via the use of certain spells/abilities.

      • Charlie A. December 31, 2018 11:26 am #

        So you couldn’t choose a allegiance for instance and include a Chaos Spawn in a detachment?

        • Paul Winters December 31, 2018 12:27 pm #

          You could soup it using the matching Chaos God Faction Keyword.

          It is an interesting idea with the Chapter Approved point reduction they 25pts a model isn’t too bad.

          • Charlie A. December 31, 2018 12:40 pm
            #

            That’s what my impression was and seems like a relevant place to discuss it 🙂 They seem like they’re cheap enough to cause a bit of a distraction imo.

          • abusepuppy December 31, 2018 6:50 pm
            #

            I don’t think I would bring them in a detachment in most cases, ’cause you’d lose your Locus, but the Spawn itself is a fairly decent model. I felt alright about running them as slot-fillers at 33pts, and at 25pts they’re even better for that.

          • Paul Winters December 31, 2018 7:09 pm
            #

            Chaos Spawn are oddly enough not . Maybe run them as Alpha Legion for the -1 to be hit and Forward Operators? 9″ out from the deployment line and 7″ move. That is a reasonable turn 1 charge.

  6. Victor December 31, 2018 10:20 pm #

    Chaos Spawns are beasts, so No -1 to hit Chaos Spawns and no Forward Operatives for them

    Legion traits only affects Infantry, Bikers, Helbrutes and Daemon Princes.

    Forward Operatives can be used only on Infantry

  7. Nate February 26, 2019 8:07 pm #

    Since the Flamers on the Flesh Hound units have been amended to Assault d6 in the FAQ, I wonder what people think about this upgrade?

  8. DeeJay March 5, 2019 8:22 am #

    I’ve been playing around quite a bit with exalted flamers, and I’ve had very good luck with them thus far.

    I can throw in 3 of them with a herald in a tzeentch vanguard/battalion detachment for a very low cost. As they are characters they cannot be targeted save for sniping attacks, and I have them generally stick inside my plague bearer squads.

    70 points for 3 lascannon shots on a highly mobile platform is very good. While the range is an issue, the speed of the platform helps.

    As an added bonus, you can also use them as flamers in a pinch.

  9. DeeJay March 5, 2019 8:48 am #

    I know you said you will include it in your next post — but I wanted to comment on soul grinders.

    I’ve been playing with them a good deal since they dropped to 180. The best with to run them IMHO is Nurgle. DR means that you are saving 55% of the wounds done to you — compared to the 50% you save as Tzeentch.

    The DR effects all wounds (even mortal), which means that you have a chance to resist mortal wounds. Nurgle grinders also get to use DR when they are rolling their 3+ save, which comes up quite often. In one game I had my nurgle grinders tie up a squad of 30 boys for 3 game turns.

    Grinders fill one of two roles. They either camp out on an objective, or move forward to engage and cause problems.

    If they are camping, they do a good job for deterring, as few things want to get close to the objective with a grinder on it. The problem is that a troops choice that assults a grinder camping on an object will take the objective from the grinder. This has happened to me on more than one occasion, so you need to ensure you have other support units near by to stop the deep striking troops.

    The other use for the grinders is to rush forward to cause mayhem. Their weapon skill never degrades. This means that until they hit the last profile, they can still do some decent damage in assault. I usually wind up using the warp claw, as you get 2 ‘to hit’ rolls for every attack. 10 attacks helps to mitigate the 4+ WS. As each of those swings are STR 8 (9 if for some reason you have a herald nearby) -2 ap, and D3 damage, they do quite a bit of work.

    Statically, the iron claw is better against vehicles. It’s not by a lot, but that’s what you want to use against targets with 3+ wounds.

    The shooting is OK from the grinders. I’ve done some damage with the phlegm bombardment. Being a heavy d6 gun, it’s pretty random in it’s effect. I’ve had it hit 4 times, and I’ve had it only shoot once. You should have seen my opponents face when he assaulted my grinder with a marine smash captain only to have him die to phlem overwatch.

    The harvester cannon is a bit more reliable in shots, but it’s not the greatest weapon. I’ve had it pluck off a few wounds from time to time.

    What really makes the grinders shine is their durability. 14 wounds with DR means they have effectively 18.2 wounds! To add insult to injury, you can heal them with Revolting Regeneration and Fleshy Abundance. This can be a great way to bring a grinder up from the lowest profile.

    As mentioned, I’ve had them take enormous amounts of firepower before cracking. I had one absorb 75 loota shots and live with 1 wound left (I was slightly lucky there, but not abnormally so)

    Overall, I think at 180 points, they are good units. Not great units. Not overpowers units (especially given the number of anti-knight weapons out in the meta today) but good units. For my nurgle army, they give some needed extra punch.

    • rvd1ofakind March 5, 2019 11:31 am #

      Honestly, I really like them. They’re basically PBCs that don’t leave the game once a cultist touches them. Also their max damage potential is insane. I’ve had a soulgrinder one-shot a PBC and then kill another PBC in melee.

      • DeeJay March 6, 2019 6:39 am #

        How do you think they compare to a defiler?

        A defiler with a defiler scourge and a reaper autocannon is coming in at 144 points (36 points cheaper than the grinder)

        The armament is close to the same. The battle cannon is slightly worse than phelm (doing ~2 damage per hit instead of 3) . The reaper autocannon does 1 damage instead of D3. You can throw a combi-bolter on the defiler.

        The defile has 7 attacks up close with the scourge. It’s a bit worse against infantry, as the claws are overkill vs most infantry but slightly better vs armor as the scourge is hitting at STR 12, AP -2, 3 dmg.

        The big difference is that the defiler does not get Disgusting Resilience.

        For a ‘fun’ list I’ve been considering running 3 of each and calling the list ‘spider man’ I don’t think it would be very competitive given the number of anti-knight weapons out there, but it might be a lot of fun to run.

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