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Metamorphs vs Acolytes


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#1
Rogue

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I know - it's not original. And perceived wisdom goes straight to acolytes because they're cheaper, troops and have access to rock saws. This is all true. But...

 

At the moment, metamorphs are only a point more than acolytes, for pretty much identical stats except the metamorphs get an extra attack. Acolytes get their knife for free boosting their attacks to three each; but metamorphs have a talon as default, pushing them up to four attacks. Now, what if we spend a point to give them another talon, taking them to five attacks each, all of which hit on 2s before any auras are applied. Not bad for 9 points.

 

There's a trade off here - the second talon means giving up the rending claw, so we'd lose the -1AP, and the chance to rend. But weight of dice is a big deal in 40k at the moment, so does 5 attacks base make up for this?

 

Here's some crude maths:

 

5 metamorphs with dual talons - 25 attacks for 45 points, or 1.8 points per attack.

vs guard: 25 x 5/6 x 2/3 x 2/3 produces 9.3 kills (4.8 points per kill)

vs marines: 25 x 5/6 x 1/2 x 1/3 produces 3.5 kills (12.9 points per kill)

 

5 acolytes with knives - 15 attacks for 35 points, or 2.4 points per attack.

vs guard: 10 x 2/3 x 2/3 x 5/6 + 5 x 2/3 x 2/3 x 2/3 produces 5.2 kills (6.7 points per kill)

vs marines: 10 x 2/3 x 1/2 x 1/2 + 5 x 2/3 x 1/2 x 1/3 produces 2.3 kills (15.2 points per kill)

 

[I've left rending out, purely because I don't know how to factor it in to the maths here - the 10 attacks with the claw average 6 or 7 hits, which generates an average one rend, but simply adding on another kill seems too crude. if we round up to 3 kills, that gives 11.7 points per kill]

 

This means that metamorphs get more attacks for their points, paying less than two points per attack. Against light infantry like guardsmen they produce a lot more kills, and achieve a better points efficiency. Against heavier targets, like marines, they still produce more kills, but become potentially less points efficient than the acolytes because rending becomes increasingly powerful against thinker armour. 

 

I've ignored various buffs and auras to keep things simple. I'm aware that the Primus would bring the acolytes up to 2+ to hit, which has less effect on the metamorphs, but you need to buy him, and have him in the right place - metamorphs can operate independently and still have their 2+. Metamorphs also gain more from a banner (in the example above, the metamorphs gain 3.5 hits to the acolytes 1.7).

 

So is there a place for metamorphs as a flanking, objective stealing unit - 90 points for 10 metamorphs who are throwing out 50 attacks, enough to shred any light infantry sitting on an isolated objective without being baby-sat by characters like the Primus.

 

What do you think?


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This year: sixteen neophytes, six acolytes, four aberrants, brood brother commander, two commissars, tech-priest, twenty brood brothers and a command squad painted

Last year: patriarch, magus, primus, iconward, abominant, five acolytes, ten brood brothers, clamavus, five aberrants, eight genestealers and three leman russ tanks painted; 188 marines, one assassin, a dreadnought, two land speeders and a stormtalon based


#2
ThePenitentOne

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It does sound good to me, but I can't really speak well to the mechanic piece since I haven't started building yet; I have a ton of stuff but I'm letting my army grow in a campaign.

 

So what I'll say about Metamorphs is that they are for late stage armies. Typically, they show up as the cult grows large enough to attract the hive fleet that spawned it; in our campaign, metamorphs can't be born until the 3rd brood cycle, which means 16 generations. 

 

By comparison, Neophytes are present in every brood cycle; they are the third organism to appear, and they never stop breeding. They are omnipresent.

 

When you play this way. it's weird; your first game is purestrains only, but any "Kills" are infected, and join your army. They can fight with you in subsequent battles, or sit out to breed. Their off spring are neophytes. If they sit out and breed, you get an Acolyte. Acolytes breed the near human acolytes- the ones based on IG and the upgrade frames. The first of these is the magus. When these breed, they beget purestrains, and the second cycle begins.

 

In the second brood cycle, rather than neophytes, there is a chance that offspring are abominations.

 

In the third brood cycle, rather than neophytes, there's a chance that offspring are either abominations or metamorphs.

 

My whole GSC army will be created by the purestrains that manage to escape in a custom Spacehulk Mission. The game is pretty much rigged so that at least 2 are guaranteed to escape, but no more than 8.

 

Sorry for the tangent, but as you can see, by the time metamorphs will show up for me, the tyranids will only be half a dozen games away.



#3
Rogue

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I worked out how to factor in rending on the acolytes' claws. So the slightly better maths now looks like this:

 

5 metamorphs with dual talons - 25 attacks for 45 points, or 1.8 points per attack.

vs guard: 9.3 kills (4.8 points per kill)

vs marines: 3.5 kills (12.9 points per kill)

 

5 acolytes with knives - 15 attacks for 35 points, or 2.4 points per attack.

vs guard: 5.4 kills (6.5 points per kill)

vs marines: 2.8 kills (12.5 points per kill)

 

Which is pretty much as anticipated - the rending makes a very small difference against Guard (0.2 extra kills from our five acolytes), and a bit more against marines (0.5 extra kills) although not as much as I guessed at. It means that the metamorphs are still better against Guard-type units, both in terms of gross kills and points efficiency; against Marine-type units it's less clear - metamorphs kill more, but do it less efficiently than the acolytes.


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This year: sixteen neophytes, six acolytes, four aberrants, brood brother commander, two commissars, tech-priest, twenty brood brothers and a command squad painted

Last year: patriarch, magus, primus, iconward, abominant, five acolytes, ten brood brothers, clamavus, five aberrants, eight genestealers and three leman russ tanks painted; 188 marines, one assassin, a dreadnought, two land speeders and a stormtalon based


#4
brother_b

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My problem is I don’t know how to outfit them, but looks like base build is good at clearing screens. I just feel like we already have that in droves.

Any reason to put in the other weapon options?

Thanks for posting this.

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#5
Rogue

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I went for the dual talons option because I was maxing out their attacks - it's the talons that shift metamorphs from 3 attacks hitting on 3s to five attacks hitting on 2s.

 

Plus, it's the one thing that metamorphs can really lean into compared to acolytes. Why load up on metamorph claws for +2 strength at -1AP when you could have acolytes with rock saws for x2 strength at -4? So leave the acolytes to take out big stuff, and send the metamorphs after light infantry. Hence the talons.

 

And you're right, we have stuff for taking out screens. But I guess the thought here is to ask: what's the best tool we have for that? Genestealers, acolytes, firepower or something else. And it's possible that metamorphs might be our best screen-clearers (or at least, a bit better at it than acolytes).


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sml_gallery_48988_15094_12010.png sml_gallery_48988_15094_13535.png ETL_Medal_02.gif gallery_48988_15465_5689.png ETL_2018_Medal_04_ETL_Magister.gif

 

This year: sixteen neophytes, six acolytes, four aberrants, brood brother commander, two commissars, tech-priest, twenty brood brothers and a command squad painted

Last year: patriarch, magus, primus, iconward, abominant, five acolytes, ten brood brothers, clamavus, five aberrants, eight genestealers and three leman russ tanks painted; 188 marines, one assassin, a dreadnought, two land speeders and a stormtalon based





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