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Burnage
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat May 26 2018, 18:02

A Farseer Skyrunner and Rangers in an Alaitoc patrol are wonderful and I will never stop singing their praises.
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hexxenwyrd
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat May 26 2018, 18:17

Supreme command for farseers, double warlock on bikes is an option.
Jinx+doom is a great way to destroy basically any target.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat May 26 2018, 23:32

@Burnage wrote:
A Farseer Skyrunner and Rangers in an Alaitoc patrol are wonderful and I will never stop singing their praises.

Plus they give us something we don't have. Infiltration.
Admittedly with the beta rules it is no where near as useful as other units can be that bubble after one movement phase, but still they are cheap and can really block up space very well.

The reason that I'm hot on doom specifically for mandrakes is the lower the strength, the better doom performs, relatively. And with mandrakes they have a low strength, and a rule that procs on a 6, meaning you have a 30% proc chance against a T8 unit, and they don't get a save against one of the damage. Beautiful.
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hexxenwyrd
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun May 27 2018, 00:21

Statistician in me demands that I point out that doom increases the likelihood to wound the most on 50% chance. That adds +25%, at 6+ to wound it adds ~14%.
Can confirm the 6+ to wound triggers are awesome.

Having only -1 AP is why I think jinks will helm a lot too. Together you've got a 55% chance to wound a predator, with 5+ to save.
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Burnage
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun May 27 2018, 00:28

@hexxenwyrd wrote:
Supreme command for farseers, double warlock on bikes is an option.
Jinx+doom is a great way to destroy basically any target.

One caveat here is that I think doubling up on Warlocks isn't necessarily great - once Jinx is covered, the other offensive Rune of Battle powers aren't that helpful and we obviously don't get much use out of the buffing half of them. You lose 1 Command Point, but a unit of Rangers is cheaper than a second Skyrunner and in my experience tends to provide more benefit.
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hexxenwyrd
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun May 27 2018, 01:47

I can see that. With things to buff the number of warlocks you want is between 2 and 5 (6 felt weird, and I didn't even try 7).
The supreme command probably gets better once you're willing to commit a bit more and get a autarch skyrunner for an interceptor/mobile firebase, and banshees for overwatch prevention. Which might be more cute than good but "I charge every unit within 15 inches" and joisting planes is too much fun to stop doing.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun May 27 2018, 03:38

I've got a casual game coming up on Monday, I think Im gonna try throwing some mandrakes into venoms and see how it goes. will let you all know! lol
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun May 27 2018, 13:02

@Aschen wrote:
I've got a casual game coming up on Monday, I think Im gonna try throwing some mandrakes into venoms and see how it goes.  will let you all know! lol

I might not be able to try this list for another week or so, so I'd love to hear how the tactic works for you and whether you come away with any tips for using it. Smile

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Aschen
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jun 01 2018, 05:54

I played a game today against Necrons using two squads of Mandrakes in a venom (single splinter fire). I think they performed decently well, but not exceedingly so. One unit died to my stupidity...got surrounded in combat and blown up (albeit I failed 5 4+ saves)...but the other unit sat on an objective for a turn, the venom died to a Veil of Darkness 17 man squad of warriors, but the mandrakes popped out, wittled down the squad to around 7 (with help), killed 5 in close combat, and the last two ran away. Then they mopped up the last of a Lords wounds with their next charge. I dunno though, I enjoyed the speed of a transport to get around, but I dunno if I would have preferred a 10 man squad in a raider. 10 poison shots a turn doesnt do much... and paying the extra 10 points for two more seems silly..
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat Jun 02 2018, 13:51

@Aschen wrote:
I played a game today against Necrons using two squads of Mandrakes in a venom (single splinter fire).  I think they performed decently well, but not exceedingly so.  One unit died to my stupidity...got surrounded in combat and blown up (albeit I failed 5 4+ saves)...but the other unit sat on an objective for a turn, the venom died to  a Veil of Darkness 17 man squad of warriors, but the mandrakes popped out, wittled down the squad to around 7 (with help), killed 5 in close combat, and the last two ran away.  Then they mopped up the last of a Lords wounds with their next charge.  I dunno though, I enjoyed the speed of a transport to get around, but I dunno if I would have preferred a 10 man squad in a raider.  10 poison shots a turn doesnt do much... and paying the extra 10 points for two more seems silly..

Thanks for sharing that. Good to hear that at least one of your Mandrake squads did some work.

I get what you mean about Venoms. Sadly, the nerf to Splinter Cannons has rendered them rather ineffective as gunboats, and they don't have any alternative weapons.

I'm hesitant about using Raiders for them simply because I prefer to distribute my points as evenly as possible (hence, I'd rather split up my expensive, Mandrake squads into Venoms, and use my Raiders for cheaper Kabalite squads). But, as usual, this is just me being weird.

If you do use a 10-man squad of them (or 2 5-man squads) in a Raider, I'd love to hear how it goes and which of the two options you preferred.

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Aschen
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat Jun 02 2018, 18:04

Im thinking of using smaller squads in a raider as bodyguards for my archon. Archons and Mandrakes are the only thing in my army that can do melee, so it makes some sense. That will allow me to max out the last squad in my list to a max squad and add another blaster and a splinter cannon if I want...
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat Jun 02 2018, 18:12

@Aschen wrote:
Im thinking of using smaller squads in a raider as bodyguards for my archon.  Archons and Mandrakes are the only thing in my army that can do melee, so it makes some sense.  That will allow me to max out the last squad in my list to a max squad and add another blaster and a splinter cannon if I want...

I've actually been trying the same thing. It helps that I'm using a Poison Tongue Archon with the Soul Seeker - so he has the same range as the Mandrakes he's with.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun Jun 03 2018, 15:48

I guess you initially take mandrakes for anti infantry.
I ran them before the codex since there were no kabal obsessions. Right now i would consider putting 5 mandrakes and 5 warriors in a raider.
But before i would do this: What about shredder trueborns for the same anti infantry role? As obsisian rose they seem very appealing in raiders paired with warriors or venoms.
Does anyone see benefits from shredder trueborns over mandrakes?
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Aschen
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun Jun 03 2018, 16:23

Well some people don't like taking Trueborn, and I personally can't get it into my head that shredders are actually worth taking lol

Lessee... in a squad of 10... you're getting approx. 14 str 6 ap1 shots, and 12 poisoned shots Vs 20 Balefire shots. for the shredder shots, you are wounding, with rerolls, approx 150% more than mandrakes, and poison about as often as mandrakes, but without the -1. Neither give out mortal wounds like Mandrakes, which hit 1/6 wound rolls, so about 3 times for a squad of 10. Badmathing it here of course (I hate math) but Shredders would dump out 9 wounds ish.... About as much as a 10 man squad of Mandrakes would do themselves in ranged, making the poisoned shots pretty much extra damage at that point (an extra 4 wounds). So damagewise, Trueborn would have more damage output.

On the Mandrake side, we have marginally better survivability (invlu instead of armor, -1 to hit), not needing to take a specific Obsession (I dont like Obs rose, to be fair), and (most importantly) better CC.
In most of the games I've played, I've used Mandrakes for CC. with 3 base attacks at Str 4, ap1, they can do some pretty decent damage, while tanking some damage of their own with that -1 to hit. I've used them to tie up Castellan Robits, murder guard, tie up mob squads I dont want my arcon to get into (cuz weight of attacks just chew through that 2+ invul quick). If you get the charge off, with a full squad of Mandrakes, you can add about 10 wounds (before saves) to their damage output, which tips it back into the Mandrakes favor a bit

*side note. All math done in my head, and poorly. Done against T4 units, without accounting for saves
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun Jun 03 2018, 17:52

@Lyceus wrote:
I guess you initially take mandrakes for anti infantry.
I ran them before the codex since there were no kabal obsessions. Right now i would consider putting 5 mandrakes and 5 warriors in a raider.
But before i would do this: What about shredder trueborns for the same anti infantry role? As obsisian rose they seem very appealing in raiders paired with warriors or venoms.
Does anyone see benefits from shredder trueborns over mandrakes?

Well, I'm not keen on Trueborn OR Shredders, so I probably won't be taking that option. Wink

I don't like Trueborn, partially because they're index-only and partially because they're badly overcosted (almost twice the cost of a Warrior for +1 attack... yeah, no). I'm not really a fan of Shredders because I just don't think they're that good.

Anyway, the things I like about Mandrakes are:
- 18" range weapons
- Good anti-infantry, but Mortal Wounds let them hurt heavier targets
- Good melee ability
- Decent survivability

Shredder Trueborn can do #1 if you take a specific Obsession, and fulfil #2 to an extent (no Mortal Wounds but higher strength), but they're no more survivable than Warriors and are barely more competent in melee.

If you're just looking for anti-infantry shooting, then Trueborn might be okay. But if you also want melee and/or survivability, Mandrakes are better.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Mon Jun 04 2018, 17:29

I think Trueborns and Mandrakes have completely different roles, and can probably not really be compared properly.
I use 5 Trueborns with 4 Dark Light weapons on a Venom as a contingency-plan. That way they can be anywhere fast, and hurt both infantry and heavy. Not take it on all by themselves, but just helping the rest of my army where needed.
If I would use Mandrakes (I do not yet), they would have a completely different role. When you use Trueborns with Shredders, I think it's better to replace them with Scourges.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jun 07 2018, 00:51

I don't mind the 25-point tax on Trueborn for 4 special weapons, but putting Blasters on them as well makes for an expensive unit. When it comes to contingency darklight, I lean towards Scourges, both for being cheaper, easier to hide, and equally mobile.

That said, I do like Trueborn with shredders, since the shredders aren't very expensive and benefit immensely both from ignore cover and additional range. After the requisite Venom, that is 142 points, although 3 attacks usually warrants an agonizer.

I do regret GW dropped the option, instead of say recommending a kit-bash of Black Ark Corsairs and Kabalite arms/legs, and giving them Ghostplate like the Scourges. I would have enjoyed running a unit of 10 with 2 splinter cannons and 4 shredders.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jun 07 2018, 09:39

@withershadow wrote:
I don't mind the 25-point tax on Trueborn for 4 special weapons

I wouldn't mind if other armies paid the same tax.

The problem is they don't. e.g. SM Devastators can take 4 Heavy weapons, but their base cost is exactly the same as that of a standard Tactical Marine. The price they pay is not being Troops.

We pay the same price, and then an additional 25pts on top of that for no good reason.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 14:06

Okay, I finally got a chance to play this army. Full battle report is here: http://www.thedarkcity.net/t18009-pt-vs-sm-1500pts#222761

To summarise, this is the list I went with:
Spoiler:
 

I was playing against a SM army.

Anyway, it seemed to work pretty well. Most of his stuff was clustered in some ruins, and having Mandrakes in vehicles meant I could set up a turn 2 charge with them. At the very least, Marines in cover were a real pain to kill, so I was very glad to have Mandrakes to help clear them out.

Of course, it's hard to tell whether this was better than just having the Mandrakes deep strike in and spending the points for their Venoms elsewhere. The turn 2 charge was certainly useful, but might not have been strictly necessary. Then again, with so many rerolling bolters, Mandrakes that deep struck in might not have survived to charge the next turn.

I'll probably try this tactic again and see how it goes.

In terms of other stuff in the list, the Soul Seeker was very useful - killing the Lieutenant by turn 2, in spite of failing to wound with half its shots. The Djin Blade, though, was very disappointing. For all the hype, it's never been very impressive when I've used it. Maybe it's because I give it to a secondary HQ? But then I always give the Blood Glaive to a secondary HQ and it has worked well regardless. Might try something different in future. If I have a game against one or more Psykers, I'd like to give the Helm of Spite a try. Otherwise, I could give Parasite's Kiss a whirl (assuming I'm not using a Blaster or Blast Pistol).

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 18:22

@Soulless Samurai wrote:
@withershadow wrote:
I don't mind the 25-point tax on Trueborn for 4 special weapons

I wouldn't mind if other armies paid the same tax.

The problem is they don't. e.g. SM Devastators can take 4 Heavy weapons, but their base cost is exactly the same as that of a standard Tactical Marine. The price they pay is not being Troops.

We pay the same price, and then an additional 25pts on top of that for no good reason.
Our Devastators are Scourges, and so Trueborn cost the same. You trade the wings for obsessions and being able to ride in transports. So your argument doesn’t jibe in that regard.

Regarding the splinter cannons, that’s 4 extra shots for 10 points, not 2, since the idea is to utilize the extra range. 4 shots rerolling 1s to hit or 1s to wound depending on obsession should pay for themselves in one volley against most targets. But it certainly does add up if the intent is to spam venoms. Hurray for magnets.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 19:28

@withershadow wrote:

Our Devastators are Scourges, and so Trueborn cost the same.
You trade the wings for obsessions and being able to ride in transports. So your argument doesn’t jibe in that regard.

That makes no sense.

Treuborn are Elite Warriors, not Elite Scourges. Their statblocks make this clear. Their fluff makes this clear. Their weapon options are those of Warriors, not Scourges (they can just take more of them). They don't have wings. They don't have Ghostplate.

What's more, you've still failed to address my original point - which was that Devastators have the same base cost as Tactical Marines. They don't pay any tax for being able to take extra weapons. Even if you consider Scourges to be the equivalent of Trueborn, that still doesn't explain why Trueborn cost so much more than Warriors in the first place.

@withershadow wrote:
Regarding the splinter cannons, that’s 4 extra shots for 10 points, not 2, since the idea is to utilize the extra range.  4 shots rerolling 1s to hit or 1s to wound depending on obsession should pay for themselves in one volley against most targets.  But it certainly does add up if the intent is to spam venoms. Hurray for magnets.

Saying that the gun will pay for itself with a single round of shooting seems like something of an exaggeration, to say the least.

Regardless, I don't think I'd take it as standard, but I could definitely see myself taking it if I have points leftover. Especially on Mandrake Venoms or other ones where the Passengers have 18" range weapons. Could also be a nice upgrade for a 'command' Venom.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 19:47

Your original point is largely irrelevant, considering these armies have different structure and different capability. We can take advantage of concentration of firepower a lot more than Space Marines, who have to slog across the board in Rhinos or lol drop pods. Chosen are also priced more than CSM in exchange for +1 attack and better weapon options.

Yeah, Trueborn are definitely overcosted by a few points (would be great if they had ghostplate and shard carbines), which goes along with Kabalites probably being too cheap, but the premium is usually worth the extra performance in my experience and actually offers some savings compared to a Kabalite squad in a Raider (venom + trueborn is up to 14 splinter and 4 darklight shots, kabalites with raider is up to 14 splinter and 4 darklight shots also).
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 20:12

@withershadow wrote:
Your original point is largely irrelevant, considering these armies have different structure and different capability. We can take advantage of concentration of firepower a lot more than Space Marines, who have to slog across the board in Rhinos or lol drop pods.

Okay. So why are only Trueborn paying this 'concentration of firepower' tax?  Neutral

@withershadow wrote:
 Chosen are also priced more than CSM in exchange for +1 attack and better weapon options.

Okay, a few point here:
1) CSM Havocs (who also get more weapon options) cost the same as normal SMs.
2) Unless I'm mistaken, CSM Chosen get more than just special weapon options - they can also take extra melee weapons and such. Not sure it's worth the extra points, just pointing out that they are getting more weapon options than Trueborn.
3) But let's say for a moment that Chosen are equivalent to Trueborn. They are to CSMs what Trueborn are to Warriors. Okay. Fine. Chosen cost 3pts (~23%) more than a normal CSM. Trueborn cost 5pts (83%) more than a Warrior. What the hell are they paying for?

@withershadow wrote:

Yeah, Trueborn are definitely overcosted by a few points (would be great if they had ghostplate and shard carbines), which goes along with Kabalites probably being too cheap, but the premium is usually worth the extra performance in my experience and actually offers some savings compared to a Kabalite squad in a Raider (venom + trueborn is up to 14 splinter and 4 darklight shots, kabalites with raider is up to 14 splinter and 4 darklight shots also).

Each to their own, then. I just find the disparity in price between Trueborn and Warriors too hard to stomach.

In terms of the comparison, 4 Trueborn w/ 4 Blasters in a Venom w/ 2 Splinter Cannons is just 1pt less than 10 Warriors w/ 2 Blasters and a Dark Lance in a Raider w/ Dark Lance (I'm assuming wargear based on your numbers), but the latter have a more survivable transport and 5 more wounds.

Although, honestly, I'd prefer to shave 20pts off the warrior squad by running 2 units of 5 and skipping the Dark Lance (I'd also run the Trueborn without the extra splinter cannon on the Venom, though I appreciate this makes them less comparable).

The other aspect though - which was part of the point I originally made - was that units like Devastators pay for not being Troops. The Warrior squad(s) in that Raider can contribute to a Battalion, whilst Trueborn can only contribute to a Vanguard (currently worth 1/5 of the CPs of a Battalion).

It's the same reason I struggle to justify Veterans in my IG army - they just don't bring enough to justify paying so much extra over basic troops.


Anyway, in terms of what I'd want from Trueborn, having them be in the actual codex again would be a nice start. Razz  Other than that, I'm not sure. Maybe a melee option, since Kabal are currently quite lacking in those.

Out of interest, why would you want Shardcarbines on them? I ask simply because poison doesn't seem particularly effective in this edition, so I'd have thought a weapon with a more useful profile would be preferable. Or is it just because Shardcarbines are currently free? Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 20:36

So again, your comparison really boils down to a 2-point difference.  Are they overpriced by 2 points per model using that formula?  Probably. Is 10 points going to break a list?  No.  And it's actually 11 points difference between those two units (188 for venom squad, 199 for raider), but fair enough.  The trueborn shredder squad at this point is probably more appealing, being only 142 points and not really having a Kabalite equivalent.

No particular reason for the shard carbines, just because it would be neat to mark their elite status (and make the scourge v. trueborn comparison that much simpler).  Free is a very nice price point, and would make bringing extra trueborn as ablative wounds a lot more reasonable.  I could see taking a squad of 10 with 4 shredders, maybe 2 cannons (probably not though), and then just a bunch of Carbines. With Flayed Skull or Poisoned Tongue, they could do some work.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 20:46

@withershadow wrote:
So again, your comparison really boils down to a 2-point difference.  Are they overpriced by 2 points per model using that formula?  Probably. Is 10 points going to break a list?  No.  And it's actually 11 points difference between those two units (188 for venom squad, 199 for raider), but fair enough.

I think you're being a little disingenuous here. The difference is actually 5pts more than a Warrior.

What I said was that, even if we took the dubious comparison of Chosen (which get options above and beyond extra special weapons), Trueborn still cost 2pts more than the Chosen - which themselves cost 3pts more than normal CSMs. And bear in mind that CSMs are a more expensive unit to begin with (they cost ~23% more than a CSM, whilst Trueborn cost ~83% more than a Warrior).

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