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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 21:00

Not really, this isn't the thunderdome where two units enter, and one unit leaves, you have to consider the whole pool of points and how much investment you're putting forward. You're really only overpaying about 2 points per model. Over 5 models, that's 10 points out of your list that is "wasted".
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 22:15

Look, if you really want to debate the merits of Trueborn, could you please create a separate thread for it?

It isn't even tangentially related to the topic of this thread.

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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 23:17

A unit from the same slot, with roughly the same cost and with the same basic job as mandrakes in a venom is not even tangentially related to the topic. Fair enough. I'll leave you to continue doing whatever it is you think you are doing.
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 23:30

@withershadow wrote:
A unit from the same slot, with roughly the same cost and with the same basic job as mandrakes in a venom is not even tangentially related to the topic.  Fair enough.  I'll leave you to continue doing whatever it is you think you are doing.

Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

And, yes, Trueborn were tangentially related when we were actually comparing them with Mandrakes. However, in case you haven't bothered reading your last 5 or so posts (and I wouldn't blame you for it), that's not even remotely what you've been arguing. All we've been doing is discussing whether Trueborn are overcosted and by how much. We've compared them to Scourges. We've compared them to Warriors. We've even compared them to Chosen, Havocs, and Devastators. But since this argument about cost broke out, neither of us have compared them to Mandrakes.

Hence why I said it is no longer even tangentially related. The thread is (or was) about Mandrakes in Venoms. Comparing them to Trueborn in Venoms is a related tangent. Discussing the price of Trueborn with no relation whatsoever to Mandrakes is another topic entirely.

The fact that you are apparently unwilling to create a topic for that particular discussion makes me thing all you really wanted here was to argue with someone.

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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jun 13 2018, 23:33

You seem ridiculously angry over nothing. I challenged one of your base assertions which you admit stems from some irrational internal bias against index options. I provided a counter-point, triggering a series of increasingly apoplectic diatribes. I was going to go, but now I'm going to stay and watch you spas a while longer.
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jun 14 2018, 00:11

@withershadow wrote:
You seem ridiculously angry over nothing. I challenged one of your base assertions which you admit stems from some irrational internal bias against index options. I provided a counter-point, triggering a series of increasingly apoplectic diatribes.

lol!

Angry? No, I just see no point in remaining civil with you. You've made it clear that you have no intention of extending me the same courtesy, and frankly it takes far more effort to edit the snark out of my posts than to just leave it in.

That said, if you want to think of my posts as being angry, go nuts. Hell, imagine me screaming my posts words into your eardrums like a Dalek for all I care.

As for the rest of that drivel, you want to link me to the place where all these challenges and counter-points are located? Because I've yet to see any from you in this thread. All I've seen is you thus far is a cavalcade of nonsensical rubbish, contradictory statements, blatant refusal to adhere to the thread topic, and goalposts moved so far that they ended up in a different country. Even more strangely, your posts are chock full of ego-stroking and condescension, as if you think that terrible arguments should be a source of pride.  

@withershadow wrote:
I was going to go

Keep telling yourself that.

@withershadow wrote:
but now I'm going to stay and watch you spas a while longer.

Does that mean you won't be participating in the sparring anymore?

Because it would be just awful if this thread were allowed to get back to topic. Rolling Eyes

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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jun 14 2018, 06:06

Nice list of buzzwords, I see you learned your debating technique from YouTube comment sections.
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phdx
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sun Jul 01 2018, 22:16

Pulling this back on track because I think it's actually a pretty interesting idea. I love Mandrakes but have found them to underperform when deepstriked. Will definitely test it out once I get back from my travels later this month. The real question is more whether Mandrakes are worth it at all.

Perks to Mandrakes:
1. Shooting attack is pretty much generically OK against any target and quite efficient against 2+ saves and high quality invulns. Notably, it loses efficiency slowly against those types of profiles as toughness goes up due to how the mortal wounds mechanic works mathematically.
2. Great melee profile.
3. -1 to hit, 5+ invuln makes them better than most of our non-coven infantry at taking fire
4. 18" range lets you shoot with relative safety from charges by infantry
5. Option to deep strike naturally

Problems with Mandrakes:
1. Shooting attack isn't particularly efficient against any particular target outside of some combination of 2+ save, high quality invuln, high toughess (stuff like custodes bikes, grotesques).
2. Relatively tougher against shooting is still trash and is still going to get wiped by modest attention. Notably, can't benefit from cover
3. Making a 9" charge after deepstrike is sketchy (~48% chance with rerolls)

So, the reality of deepstriking Mandrakes is that their shooting profile isn't focused enough to realistically alpha anything down in shooting - they'll need significant help from the rest of the army which eliminates a lot of the flanking value of deep strike. Then they have a 50% chance to fail their charge and get shot to pieces. This is of course after they were unable to participate in your own T1.

I feel like I could write a novel about how good Venoms are, but I think the key points here are:
1. You're probably overpaying for the defensive abilities on Mandrakes anyway since they are unlikely to meaningfully impact the survival of the unit (notably, if you failed your 9" charge they can charge back with just about anything to ignore the -1 and probably trash you).
2. Venoms pretty much completely solve the problem of delivery into melee.
3. The optimal operating range of a Venom (barely under 18") is perfect for Mandrakes - they can shoot at full efficiency, and it's a ~6" charge roll if you disembark toward something that started 18" from the Venom.
4. Starting in the Venom pretty much guarantees your Mandrakes will participate on T1

So it really boils down to:
1. If I have an empty Venom in my list and have Mandrakes in my list, putting them together feels like it's almost certainly correct (or certainly conditionally correct depending on the matchup)
2. If I have a Venom carrying something that really doesn't need a transport (most characters) and have Mandrakes in my list, I'd strongly consider swapping (conditional on matchup again)
3. If I only have one of the two (Venom with no/unnecessary cargo, Mandrakes), I'm not sure whether it's worth adding the other.

Mandrakes with Venoms (they don't have to be paired from game to game, which is a noteworthy flexibility) seem like a pretty strict improvement over Wyches in Venoms in my heavy Venom spam list - the list wants an assault unit very badly, wants to hit as hard as possible T1 in shooting, and contains Doom (awesome synergy with the 'drakes), and the Mandrakes are better than Wyches in basically every way while fulfilling those conditions.

I'd probably never use them in a Coven list - Talos are basically doing the same thing (medium shooting quality backing melee punch) more efficiently. Same with Skyweavers in a Harlequin detachment. Worth nothing that the shooting of Mandrakes is technically slightly different from either of those being basically a worse HWB that also hits MCs and bikes, but those units or HWB Scourges are really a better shooting benchmark than anything with Shredders (the tactical role of 18" shooting is closer to 24" than 12" too, being generally out of reliable charge range of your target in many scenarios where 12" is basically always within >50% likelihood charge range).

Shredderborn are pretty unambiguously better at shooting most targets - see the attached table for 5 of each with 2 variants involving common modifiers (Doomed target, non-infantry target) vs. various toughness and effective save combinations (i.e. -1 modifier pre-factored), but it's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison as you should definitely be taking Mandrakes to charge things, with sitting back and shooting being plan B.
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|Meavar
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Mon Jul 02 2018, 08:00

@phdx wrote:

1. You're probably overpaying for the defensive abilities on Mandrakes anyway since they are unlikely to meaningfully impact the survival of the unit (notably, if you failed your 9" charge they can charge back with just about anything to ignore the -1 and probably trash you) .
2. Venoms pretty much completely solve the problem of delivery into melee.

They also have the -1 in melee I think.
Venoms ad to their survivability and in that way help get them in melee, or did you mean something else as well?
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phdx
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Mon Jul 02 2018, 13:51

@|Meavar wrote:

They also have the -1 in melee I think.

Yep, they do. Keep thinking it's like the Venom (which I've been playing a lot more recently.

RE: Venoms, that pretty much nails it. For the purposes of getting into melee, deep strike gives you pretty much perfect flexibility in positioning, but >9" will always leave you with a poor success chance on the charge and leave you horribly exposed. Venoms:
1. Are extremely fast, so you can still set up for charges effectively.
2. Excellent protection (that also saturates your opponent's shooting severely when you have 5+ Venoms in addition to the usual heavy hitters like Ravagers)

So what putting them in the Venom gets you:
1. The ability to shoot T1 and screen for characters while positioning for a T2 charge (a forward deepstrike contributes nothing T1)
2. The ability to sit around and continue shooting under 6 T5 -1 to hit 4+/5++/6+++ ablative wounds if you are unable to generate a favorable charge
3. The ability to reliably charge if you want to (by getting movement in addition to charge)

Keep in mind that Venoms are extremely efficient for adding splinter fire (the most spammable anti-infantry we have), so there's not much of a tax here provided you want more of that in your list.

What you lose:
1. Setting up your T2 charge with perfect knowledge of the board (deep strike deploys beginning of T2 rather than Venom setting up movement phase T1)
2. Perfect insulation from damage T1 (being in a Venom is good, but being off the table completely is better)
3. drops placed in reserves during deployment (forcing your opponent to commit to the table first is good)

Since the statline on Mandrakes makes them sort of a jack of all trades generalist unit, it seems that the flexibility you get by riding a Venom is potentially good. For deepstrike alphas I'm more interested in scourges shooting (better range, far better shooting, similar or better durability with 4+ and ability to take advantage of cover) or WWPing in a blog of Grotesques (definitely not dying when they fail their charge).
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sekac
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Tue Jul 03 2018, 08:15

I'm genuinely surprised to see the lacklustre anecdotes of deepstriking mandrakes. They're better than they've ever been and I don't think they've had a disappointing game yet.

I admit I don't play in high level tournaments and the dynamics change, but mandrakes' true value is that they are generalists in an army that doesn't really have any otherwise.

I usually deep strike 2 units of 5 and find they're very rarely exposed even if their charge is unsuccessful. If you're finding small squads of mandrakes getting shot to pieces, then you've got one of two problems:
1) Your board doesn't have enough LoS blocking terrain, or you didn't use it.
2) All of the more important units are dead.
Neither of those issues are the fault of deep striking mandrakes. Remember, too, that Strike from the Shadows, and Lightning Fast Reflexes are great stratagems for keeping them alive.

The trick to mitigating a failed charge is to position where either the counter-charger will be drawn out of position away from where they're needed, or where they'll be lured into an area where you can wipe out their CC threats with minimal risk to your main force.

And if their charge is unsuccessful, approximately half the time, the opponent will be counter-charging on turn 3 (assuming you deep strike in on turn 2). Turn 3 is +1 to hit from mandrakes and -1 to hit for him. That's an important enough advantage that he must a disproportionately powerful unit to neutralize the mandrakes.
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lcfr
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jul 05 2018, 20:50

I'm going to give 8 a shot in a Raider with a pair of Blaster toting Archons.

I would really, really like to be happy using Incubi as my retinue but Mandrakes just fit the vibe better, and can ultimately just go deep striking outside of the Raider if I don't want to deploy them like that.

Argh. Just give Incubi some edge over Mandrakes and I am THERE.
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Cerve
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Tue Jul 10 2018, 09:15

Juat try the Incubi, I know more than one guy who try them and got himself surprised for how good they are.
Maybe they're not necessary in this meta, but they're far from being useless! Even Drazhar himself works pretty well.

It's the good thing about having a broken Codex: even the lesser choices still great
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sekac
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jul 11 2018, 07:51

I actually like Incubi too. An effective CC unit that can fit in a venom and has a small enough footprint to pretty easily hide on the table (assuming and 8th edition ready table) is a nice little niche.

Drazhar, however, is terrible. I guess he's helpful for doing a double kabaltalion, but otherwise he's offensively very similar to a Klaivex and his aura is redundant.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jul 11 2018, 18:39

In realty, his aura is not redundant. With DEnyou're charging in turn1/turn2 almost. Drazhar is actually a must for bringing +1 to hit before turn3, which helps a lot (if not even mandatory).
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jul 11 2018, 19:36

Well....I've already converted 8 Incubi, I'm just going to go ahead and convert Drazhar too just to say I've really tried my hardest.

I played Incubi in the Index and enjoyed having a small combat cleanup crew, but without improving Onslaught or Drazhar's aura I just can't bring myself to run them over Mandrakes in my Kabal (Mandrakes in a RAIDER).
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Wed Jul 11 2018, 19:56

@Cerve wrote:
In realty, his aura is not redundant. With DEnyou're charging in turn1/turn2 almost. Drazhar is actually a must for bringing +1 to hit before turn3, which helps a lot (if not even mandatory).

So spend a single CP instead of bringing a 120 point Klaivex.
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Cerve
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jul 12 2018, 09:11

Well, it doesn't bring only that boost. If I would play a lot of Incubi I would think about Drazhar. But still a matter of choice
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Thu Jul 12 2018, 22:50

I know Doom allows them to reroll failed wounds which would boost their Mortal Wounds by about 50%, But is there anyway for us to get them +1’s to wound?

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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jul 13 2018, 07:32

A unit of power weapons carves through infantry quite well. They are also pretty sturdy as far as Drukhari infantry goes.

Drazhar is still a big disappointment and is where a lot of my Chapter Approved hopes lay. I hope they change his aura to +1 to wound rather than to hit, that would be sweet. And uncap that damn stratagem.
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jul 13 2018, 09:48

If they uncap that Stratagem completely, then it becomes silly - double hits on a 4+ with both Drazhar and turn 3+.

If they change Drazhar to +1 to Wound, he becomes very, very scary.  Especially if he gets the Klaivex ability that he really, really ought to have.

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Cerve
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jul 13 2018, 10:46

Unfortunately, the stratagem count only "natural 6". So no +1 to hit for that Sad
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Soulless Samurai
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jul 13 2018, 10:57

@Cerve wrote:
Juat try the Incubi, I know more than one guy who try them and got himself surprised for how good they are.

I can only speak for myself, but I've already tried them and found them lacklustre.

Maybe if they were Kabal and could benefit from Poison Tongue and the Archon's Aura.

As it stands though, I see little reason to take them over Mandrakes. I don't think they're significantly more durable, and I don't think an extra 2pts of AP in melee are worth it when you have to sacrifice sacrificing 10 18" S4 AP-1 shots that inflict Mortal Wounds on 6s.

Even if I'm set on using Venoms (so won't be taking advantage of the Mandrakes' ability to deep strike), I'd still pick Mandrakes over Incubi.

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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Fri Jul 13 2018, 12:26

Incubi are good MEQ killers, but we already have so many great MEQ killers to choose from that they're completely unnnecessary.
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withershadow
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PostSubject: Re: Mandrakes in Venoms   Sat Jul 14 2018, 18:04

@Ikol wrote:
If they uncap that Stratagem completely, then it becomes silly - double hits on a 4+ with both Drazhar and turn 3+.

If they change Drazhar to +1 to Wound, he becomes very, very scary.  Especially if he gets the Klaivex ability that he really, really ought to have.
Well, they ARE supposed to be blenders.

So a unit of 10 would have 31 base attacks, and land about 41 hits with the stratagem. Very Happy I can dig it.

But since Drazhar would be changed to buff wounds along with the uncapped stratagem, it would only be triggering on a 5+ after turn 3, much like the Blooddancer warlord trait, so the 31 base attacks would land 36 times. That’s not that much of a difference from the current state that results in 31 attacks and 31 hits.

If they buff Drazhar’s aura to +1 wound, I would love that to the point that I don’t care about the stratagem. S4 on the Incubi is pretty weak-sauce.
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