Chimera Squad Enemy Analysis: Sacred Coil Neonate Chryssalid

HP: 4/4/5/5 (+1/+3)
Defense: 15
Dodge: 10
Aim: 80/80/85/85 (+2/+5)
Mobility: 14
Damage: 2-3 (+1/+3)
Will: 50 (+10/+20)
Initiative: 50

Alert Actions: None.

I really don't get why Alert Mecs will move about but not Neonate Chryssalids.

Passive: Does not make use of Cover, but does not suffer penalties from being in the open.

As always, this is less relevant than you might expect if you come from a prior XCOM game, since crits don't really matter in Chimera Squad and the player has so many otherwise-good tools that don't care about Cover in the first place.

Passive: Cannot be Poisoned.

Amusingly, both Neonate Chryssalids and their mature cousins, being biological enemies, can be captured for Intel by knocking them Unconscious, even though narratively there's no way you should be able to interrogate them. This oddity is unique to them, as every other enemy where interrogation seems an unlikely possibility is impossible to KO, such as Codices and the various robot enemies; they will all automatically die.

I'd complain, but honestly, Sacred Coil is already the faction most prone to denying the player Intel, and the game is clearly designed in the expectation that high-level play involves regularly getting an Intel boost from captured enemies. It's probably for the best that Chryssalids and Neonate Chryssalids don't make this particular problem worse.

As for the Poison immunity itself, this is of course noticeably relevant if you have Torque and/or if you hit Gray Phoenix before Sacred Coil, for much the same sort of reasons as I covered in XCOM 2: Neonate Chryssalids would be an excellent target for Poisoning, if only you were allowed to do so. (Thankfully, Chimera Squad is overall better than XCOM 2 about Targets Poison's Penalties Are Great Against actually overlapping with Targets That Can Be Poisoned) Notably, Neonate Chryssalids are frail enough that Torque's Poison Spit would be a reliable kill (in the first Act) if it, y'know, could actually affect them.

Of course, if you skip Torque and don't hit Gray Phoenix before Sacred Coil, then the Poison immunity probably doesn't matter, same as always.

Passive: Can travel Z-levels freely as part of normal movement.

As I've said repeatedly, Chimera Squad's map trends are such that this mobility advantage often doesn't matter at all. That said, Neonate Chryssalids are more likely to have it come up than, say, Mecs, as their nature as a dedicated melee combat means that if you've got agents on high ground the Neonate Chryssalid will inevitably try to approach in a manner this mobility matters to. (Where a Mec might shuffle about in the low ground and then take a shot, or fire its Micromissiles, or use Pin Down, without ever getting around to leaping to higher ground)

Chryssalid Slash
Turn-ending action: The Neonate Chryssalid's primary attack is a move-and-melee attack.

Chimera Squad's maps trend small enough that even with Dash movement being made less effective a Neonate Chryssalid is pretty likely to be able to reach one of your agents on its very first turn. On very large maps you can confidently ignore them for a Round, maybe even for two Rounds, but since this series (still) offers no way to check movement ranges on enemies, it's easy on one of the more mid-sized maps to think it's large enough your agents are out of reach and whoops they get Slashed in the face.

So I personally tend to plan as if I'll never be able to ignore them for 2 turns without actually stalling them somehow myself. (eg with Stuns)

Chryssalid Poison
Passive: The Chryssalid's melee attack inflicts Chryssalid Poison on civilians, resulting in a Chryssalid Cocoon with 5 (+1/+2) HP and 50 Will that will then produce 4 HP Neonate Chryssalids up to 3 times. Does 1-3 damage per turn. No effect on Chimera Squad agents.

Bizarrely, if you use the F1 mod to look at Neonate Chryssalids, they won't be listed as having this ability, but they absolutely have it. It's weird because mature Chryssalids do have it displayed if you check them that way. Weird stuff.

Also, both Neonate Chryssalids and mature Chryssalids have the unusual behavior of spontaneously targeting Civilians in any mission, to actually leverage this ability. (And possibly to drive home that Sacred Coil using Chryssalids is extremely careless/callous/stupid) So if Chryssalids are about, you should be more aggressive than usual about rescuing Civilians.

Exacerbating this is that, unlike in XCOM 2, when a Cocoon gets its turn the newly-birthed Chryssalid gets to act immediately. (Which is really striking given that Chimera Squad defaults to 'add new units to the end of the Timeline' and 'add new units in a spaced-out way between agent turns') This also means you want to prioritize the Cocoon a lot more than in XCOM 2, especially since Cocoons aren't giant sacks of HP in Chimera Squad; 5/6/7 HP is really not much, even by Chimera Squad's depressed HP standards, so you can usually kill them with one agent turn, often with one agent action.

Also, the newly-birthed Neonate Chryssalids have (almost) the full statline of a regular Neonate Chryssalid, including taking into account difficulty and Act modifiers. (eg if Sacred Coil is your last Investigation, these baby Neonates will have 90 Aim)

The big exception is that the HP of the newly-birthed Chryssalids isn't affected by Act, so this is another example of Sacred Coil tending to be harder if hit first than hit last in a way that isn't so reliably true of the other Investigations. For example, 4 HP is just enough that your non-Shotgun-wielding agents will sometimes leave a newborn Chryssalid alive if using completely unupgraded weapons, but just one upgrade is enough to ensure that a Graze has to trigger for them to survive being hit. Similarly, Impact Frames take Subdue from 'incapable of KOing a newborn Chryssalid' to 'always KOs a newborn Chryssalid'. So that's a few examples where Civilians getting bitten by Chryssalids can go way worse if you hit Sacred Coil first than if you hit them later.

And yes, your squad is immune to Chryssald Poison. No justification is proffered; it's very obvious this is purely because Chimera Squad is designed so an agent actually dying is a game over, and Chryssalid Poison's mechanics are premised under death occurring. So the game fudges things, because the alternatives are more ridiculous and/or obnoxious. "Chryssalids instantly cause Game Overs by attacking agents, unlike literally every other enemy in the game" would be awful. "Baby Chryssalids are crawling out of Godmother's corpse unconscious body, but she'll be totally fine after the mission is over! Really!" would be absurd.

So the result is pretty silly, but whatever.

Also, I'm not actually 100% confident Chryssalid Poison is restricted to civilians. It's possible it does work on some enemies; my Puppeteer-based testing was not perfectly thorough. I'd be surprised if it works on any regular enemies, but it's entirely possible I just never tested on a vulnerable target.


Narratively/aesthetically, Neonate Chryssalids are of course the return of Neonate Chryssalids from the Tactical Legacy Pack's It Came From The Sea scenario. I'm all for this in broad strokes; it's nice to have this skin see more general use instead of being relegated to a specific scenario in a specific subsection of a DLC pack I suspect plenty of players never actually touched at all, especially since it's a pretty nice skin, and it makes sense for Chryssalids to be seen as more than just fully-grown adults.

In detail-work, it's a bit more disappointing. As we'll see next post, Neonate Chryssalids and Chryssalids are very similar, so much so I was honestly tempted to shove them together into a single post. Neonate Chryssalids basically just have slightly less HP and Dodge, as far as mechanics stuff. It would've been nice to have had a slightly more substantial difference, instead of 'Chryssalid, and slightly less durable Chryssalid'.

By extension, I'll be saving talking about Chryssalids for the mature Chryssalid post, since it'll have so little to say about mechanics and all.



Next time, we move on to the mature Chryssalid.

See you then.


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