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 Grotesques vs Incubi

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MHaruspex
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PostSubject: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Jan 20 2016, 01:31

So, assault units are fun and I've been running Grotesques for the longest time, but I'm considering Incubi and would like to hear the opinions of some people who have experience with both.

As I see it, both have some pros and cons. On the charge, an Incubus will kill one Marine, while a Grotesque will kill negligibly more - 28/27. Against TEQ, Incubi still score one kill, while Grotesques only score 14/27. Keep in mind too that Grotesques cost 35pts to the Incubi's 20. Against hordes (Ork Boyz, in this example), the Grotesques do much better - still one kill for Incubi, while the Grotesques score 70/27. Guardsmen, you'll see an Incubus getting 4/3 kills, while a Grotesque scores 175/54. Grotesques will also do a much better job smashing up vehicles - an Incubus scores 1/3HP against rear AV10, while a Grotesque will score 10/9HP, with equal chances of having a glance or pen. Against higher Toughness units like SM Bikes, Incubi score 2/3 wounds while Grotesques do 7/12, but as Toughness climbs to 6 or above the Incubi really start to suffer. Grotesques also have a chance of Instant Death, which can be beautiful against MCs with poor saves or units like Ogryn.

When it comes to resiliency, a Marine firing a single bolter shot has a 2/27 chance of causing an unsaved wound to an Incubus, or 3/27 to cause one to a Grotesque. Of course, a single wound will kill an Incubus, where the Grotesque will be packing two more. This is counting both models' FNP 5+ - but the Grotesques have theirs from the start of the game, while the Incubi only get it on Turn 3. Incubi can also be taken down ridiculously easily with Plasma Guns or similar weaponry, while a Grotesque's only glaring weakness is Instant Death through either Force Weapons or S10. Other than IG Manticores and Force Staves though, I'm not sure there's anything that falls into those categories that Incubi aren't just as weak against.

The Grotesques can also get additional bonuses from being run in the Grotesquerie - either boosting offensive power through +1S or Rage (or Shred, but in my experience that doesn't do anything most games since they have Poison 4+ anyway), or boosting defensive power through +1T or FNP 4+. Of course, that carries a 70pt tax in the form of a Haemonculus. It does grant them the Covens PFP table too - trading Furious Charge for (much earlier) Fearless, Fear, and It Will Not Die. They also lose Rage and gain Eternal Warrior, but Turn 6 bonuses aren't really worth considering in my mind. The -1LD aura can sometimes make a difference, too.

Other advantages the Incubi have are a higher Initiative, Fleet (though Grotesques can sometimes get that through the Grotesquerie), a higher Leadership, and the fact that they're not bulky - letting you use Venoms as their transports instead of the less shooty Raiders. Whether a 5++ save or a third hullpoint and the ability to buy Nightshields is more survivable is meta-dependent, but could be argued either way. Regardless of that argument though, Incubi can choose their transport while Grotesques are locked into buying a Raider (unless you're footslogging or running them through a WWP). There's also a case to be made that a Klaivex may be more useful than an Aberration - the Klaivex gets AP2 and thus can take on any non-MC model in a challenge, where that's not the case with the Aberration. The lucky guy to be upgraded to Klaivex gets the Rampage rule too, where buying an Aberration doesn't really grant anything new on its own - just the ability to buy different weapons. Of course, that's not to say the Aberration can't be a terror with an Agonizer, or at least have a chance against walkers with the Scissorhand's Rending.

So, all that rambling aside, anyone have a good deal of practical experience with both on the tabletop that can share some thoughts? Or some other hidden strength or glaring weakness for either unit to bring up? I'm going to try to proxy some Incubi next few games to see how they do for me.
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hydranixx
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Jan 20 2016, 02:32

MHaruspex wrote:
Incubi can also be taken down ridiculously easily with Plasma Guns or similar weaponry, while a Grotesque's only glaring weakness is Instant Death through either Force Weapons or S10. Other than IG Manticores and Force Staves though, I'm not sure there's anything that falls into those categories that Incubi aren't just as weak against.

I will play devil's advocate here and state that there's lots out there at the moment to chew through t5 3w of a Grot unit quite quickly, not just ID or S10.

- There are special rules that give ID - such as other "Lethal Dose" types of ID ie rolls 6's inflict ID. Examples include Taloi/Lhamaeans/Korsorro Khan iirc.
- There's more and more Strength D weapons, in which case more wounds and toughness means nothing. Good old Wraithcannons huh.
- Any and all poison and sniper type weapons will eat through their tiny armour save, ignore toughness and FNP only goes so far.
- As for existing regular strength 10, Dreadnoughts are crazy good at squishing them with their new attacks values. Vindicators eat them for breakfast, especially if they're arriving via portal.

Of course, none of this makes the Incubi "better" or harder to kill - they will die just as fast to most of it (except poison). The point I'm making is that the natural resilience of units is declining across the board, with the inclusion of a plethora of strength D etc.

I personally like Incubi. They're pretty robust against most heavy infantry. You can expect decent results from them against common types of enemies. Against things with an armour value, they can glance them to death if the back is 10, and if Furious Charge is in effect from PfP, they can even be fairly reliable at it.

But they seriously fall short against high toughness enemies. They still get smashed apart by walkers and MC's. They can get hurt by small arms fire. Many armies include powerful anti MEQ guns due to MEQ popularity, and all of that is even better against Incubi. Heldrakes come to mind.

They won't have Furious Charge or FNP till late game. A lot of the time they really suffer from overwatch, far more than Grots, (don't let 3+ fool you) and from the lack of grenades. So you have to be skittish around cover.

Grots are still stronger in most cases, and only fall short if you're caught by those nasty weapons I  detailed above weapons. If your opponent has these scary things, careful play keeps them safe until you need them most. If you just balls to the wall it with their raider, they can quite easily all die in one shot.

Depends on your environment. I find Incubi infinitely more surgical, cheaper, and as you mention, they have access to Venoms. Its realistic to run a small squad of 4-5 in a venom skitting around shooting while on the prowl for a mid game charge, or counter attack, against things like Terminators/Sanguinary Guard etc which DE shooting and grots are usually weak against.

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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Jan 20 2016, 08:04

I concur. I found the best way to run incubi is not a deathstar but as a surgical tool. 5 in a venom are pretty cheap, give you a venom, don't draw too much fire and make great counter charge units against say drop pod marines (where the grenades are less likely to be an issue depending on your positioning), or mid game "I'm a marine player and I forget that positioning is a thing" which isn't too rare in my experience, against a smart player they become area denial (or at least absorb probably more than their point cost to shoot out). I think Grotesque are better shock troops, but I think incubi were always meant to emulate the surgical killing blow anyways, a role at which they are fairly good.

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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Jan 20 2016, 15:23

I'd use one or two three men squads with Klaivex if I already had the toughest girls of the galaxy models. Until then I stick with grotesques if I bother with close combat at all

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MHaruspex
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Fri Jan 22 2016, 23:18

So after yesterday, I've swayed away from Incubi a bit. I still haven't gotten them in the mail, but here's the story:

Was playing a Reaver-heavy list against CSM, 1500pts. Bare minimum amount of Warriors in Venoms, Succubus with Glaive, Grotesquerie, 3 units of 6 Reavers, 2 units of HayScourge, and a Lance Razorwing. He was packing a bunch of autocannon Havocs and Noise Marines with Blastmasters.

Game was on short table edges. I figured there was no way I'd survive charging up, so instead I only deployed the three Reaver squads out of firing range of anything he'd deployed, a sort-of kind-of null deployment. Turn one he scores some objectives and I just inch forward a little bit, and turn two he continues scoring objectives (4-0 at this point) and some of the reserves start coming in. Among other things, the Raider with 3 Grotesques + Succubus comes in. Turn 3, they and their Raider manage to tank a lot of shooting and survive, and then come in for the assault. At this point, the Reavers zoom up as well, and relatively safely make it through enemy fire to assault on Turn 4.

Ultimately, the guy got tabled bottom of turn 6. I recognize that "deepstrike and soak fire" is more the role of the Dark Artisan (which would have performed better I'm sure, and the Reavers would have appreciated having FNP 4+), but the Grotesques still did a good enough job of it that the rest of the army was able to come in relatively intact - and that I'd have had no unit that could fill that fire magnet role if needed had I gone with Incubi instead. Had I been unable to pull a trick like that, I think it's doubtful I'd have been able to survive his shooting.

On an unrelated note, I got a bit tempted to start running Animus Vitae on the Succubus. Sure, it'll only work half the time, but I'd never realized how Reavers actually become useful in the assault outside their Hammer of Wrath when they get that Strength boost from Furious Charge. They're essentially better Harlequins at that point.
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Sat Jan 23 2016, 11:19

I've used Incubi many times I a variety of forms - from cheap, 3-man squads with Klaivexes to 5-man squads (also with Klaivexes) accompanied by a character of some form or other. I've tried Succubi with them to give them extra S4 AP2 attacks, I've tried a Coven Haemonculus to give them +1PfP, Fearless and eventually Zealot.

Each time they've reached combat. Not once have they done even remotely well. No, I tell a lie, they once killed a unit of 6 Ork boys, before dying next turn to their mates.

Here are some units my Incubi (and characters) have completely failed to kill:
- 3 Centurions with a Techmarine
- 3 Centurions without a Techmarine (Actually, I think I might have eventually killed these, having spent about 5 game turns locked in combat with them)
- 4 Possessed
- 4 Grey Knights
- 4 Grey knights (again)
- 5 Warp Spiders

Those are just the ones that I can remember. And this isn't even including all the times they've had to sit in a Raider, twiddling their thumbs, because their target is in a bush.

It doesn't help that they seem to die to a stiff breeze. Just about every charge seems to involve at least one Incubi dying to overwatch, and even relatively weak attacks take their toll. Anything more just shreds the squad.

Now, granted, my Grotesques don't have an outstanding track-record either. But, they've also had several games where they've been virtually unstoppable. It might not happen often (certainly not as often as I'd like Wink ), but at least I can look back on those games and think 'Yeah, I get why people like these guys'. With Incubi, there's nothing like that. I can't think of a single game where they even performed well in one fight, let alone a game where they were my MVP or otherwise key to my victory.
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Sat Jan 23 2016, 11:50

You seem to suffer from really bad dice rolling...

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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Feb 03 2016, 18:38

I love incubi their looks and fluff are unmatched. But a 3 man grotesque squad with succubus just always performs better, id run four but only have 3. Incubi certainly have laid waste to many hapless foes but in terms of consistency I'd take grots any day
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Feb 03 2016, 19:29

Incubi are better against Grey Knights than Grotesques. They won't last particularly long but, I find they perform better. Also, they don't have to have the HQ babysitter so you could field multiple squads and keep your warlord elsewhere.
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Feb 03 2016, 20:24

Sslyth are better than both outside of a Formation. I prefer Grotesques if you can afford a Grotesquerie though.
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Wed Feb 03 2016, 23:58

I'm a pretty big fan of Grotesques, and not a huge fan of Incubi. While the DE aspect warriors are nasty if their business works correctly, they're too fragile in my opinion.

Don't get me wrong, both units are GOOD, I just think the Grots are better. Especially since they compete for the same slot and battlefield role.
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MHaruspex
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 00:26

Yeah, ultimately I've come to (oversimplified) conclusion that for their cost, Incubi are twice as killy while Grotesques are three times as hard to kill. Varies dramatically by what you're assaulting/what's hitting you, but as a general rule.

I'm sticking with Grotesques because in an assault-heavy list I really like having units that can soak a decent amount of fire. If I were going with some sort of Venomspam I'm probably go with a single unit of Incubi as a counterassault unit, and wouldn't really mind if they got shot rather than a shooty Warrior Venom - but that's not really my style.
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 00:33

Hellstrom wrote:
Sslyth are better than both outside of a Formation.  I prefer Grotesques if you can afford a Grotesquerie though.

Sslyth have never crossed my mind, and i currently run 4xgrots in a raider with a glaived succubus. might have to try the Sslyth next game and see how they perform

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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 02:53

Do Sslyth have anything going on in CC?
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 03:18

As someone who has a lot of practical experience with both units they both have a dofferent role. I use incubi as small assassin surgical units and the grotesques as large battering rams.

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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 04:21

I questioned myself on this the other day. It comes down to suvivability and number of saves forced - dice output over wounds lost.
Regardless of the AP of the incubi weapons, they're only S4, whereas S5 poisoned often means wounding on 2's or 3's with rerolls. It's the same principal on which we love our venoms, excpet output only shrinks after the 3rd unsaved/unfeelnopain'd wound.
I think incubi and grots work better together than they do apart, because they are individually a heavy combat threat and forces them to be prioritised and often can be used to split the opponent's army down the middle (though i'd bolster the incubi's flank as they can't handle firepower like grots can)

Jimsolo wrote:
Do Sslyth have anything going on in CC?
I originally used them as archon guard before i made my grots. S5 T5 W2 is awesome. and they can also shoot - and shoot they do! They're better at surviving than incubi but aren't as reliable as either incubi or grots in offense. They're my conservatively offensive bodyguard squad
P.S. not to mention a medusa or two in the squad makes your opponent think twice before charging in
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PostSubject: Re: Grotesques vs Incubi   Thu Feb 04 2016, 10:21

Jimsolo wrote:
Do Sslyth have anything going on in CC?

Point for point, they aren't far off Grotesques.  Lots of str5 attacks.  Plop in a couple of Lhamaean for LD.

http://www.thedarkcity.net/t11713-sslyth-vs-grotesque
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