Crypt Ghouls Warhammer 8th edition Vampire Counts overview
What are Crypt Ghouls
Crypt Ghouls and there larger cousins the Crypt Horrors are the only creatures usually found in Vampire Count army who are not truly undead. They are ugly hunchback creatures said to have descended long ago from flesh eating tribes who long ago in the far south worshipped the Great Necromancer himself Nagash. It is also said that any humans in the Warhammer world who resort to cannibalism will become Ghouls as they devolve over time.
Though not undead as such the vile practises they engage in attracts dark magic and they are in turn attracted to places where dark magic pools such as graveyards and crypts. These places suit the Ghouls as they are hunted and abhorred by man and graveyards and the like give them both a place to hide and a ready source of food.
Vampires and Necromancers are oft sources of vast dark magic and so the Ghouls are also drawn to them, saturated with dark magic a skilled practitioner of necromancy can use this to command and control Ghouls overriding their cowardly nature and driving them en mass into battle.
In the game
In the game Ghouls are a tough infantry unit with 2 poisoned attacks apiece making them the best combat fighters Vampire Counts get in their core selection. They lack unit upgrades as such beastial creatures would never use such things as standards or musicians though they do have their own twisted champion the Ghast.
Differing from 7th edition, Ghouls have increased in points cost in 8th edition but have otherwise remained the same, also gone are the synergised Vampiric Powers Summon Ghouls and Ghoulkin.
Pros and cons
Pros are that Ghouls are still the best combat choice for a core troop for Vampire Counts, poisoned attacks also lets them take down lightly armoured foes regardless of toughness. Synergising well with the improvement in Corpse Carts and their Vigour Mortis ability (grants Always Strikes First to nearby units) plus the Lore of the Vampire spell Vanhel's Danse Macabre giving re rolls to hit allowing a second chance for poison to take its toll on the enemy.
Cons are the increased points cost making them twice that of Skeleton Warriorsand over thrice that of Zombies. The loss of synerging Vampiric Powers also affects them as does the lack of standards, for the Blood and Glory scenario and the combat resolution bonus. They also lack musicians making them a little less maneuverable then other units
Ghouls are a tough combat unit capable of taking down many foes that lack heavy armour with their poisoned attacks special rule, this is further enhanced with either the effects of Vigour Mortis or a casting of Vanhel's Danse Macabre. Ghouls are the unit that you want to take when you want a core unit that can kill something, with 2 attacks each they are also effective at both assaulting buildings and defending them for example in the Watch Tower scenario.
Crypt Ghouls are also now more of a target for shooting and magical ranged attacks as they are more likely to be smaller units due to their increased points costs and the reduction in points of Skeleton Warriors and Zombies.