The Ghouls are hastily-bred clones grown in diapause bags dropped in from space and buried in the ground. These deformed monstrosities may be lacking in typical qualities like intelligence, sanity or longevity, but their sheer numbers, ferociousness and deadly weapons more than make up for it. With paralytic blood, ghouls remain a threat even after they have died.
The Ghouls are Grineer shock and ambush units found on the Plains of Eidolon, consisting of malformed, defective or partially-developed clones incubated for several days in "diapause bags" buried in the ground, with an emphasis on simplicity and speed of growth over quality. All Ghouls exhibit primitive, animalistic pack behavior, bursting out of the dirt and savagely attacking anyone who trespasses on their burial sites. Although they may be found in the plains, they may appear in greater numbers during a Ghoul Purge. They are the favored creations of Councilor Vay Hek, who refers to them as his "children."
All Ghouls have "paralytic blood", which is released upon death as a cloud that inflicts Cold and Toxin procs on contact. The Cold proc has a reduced duration of 2 seconds, but the Toxin proc should be treated with caution as they can quickly sap a Warframe's health, especially in melee combat.
There are four variants of Ghouls:
- Ghoul Auger carries two drills that they use to attack or drill into the ground to appear in another place.
- Ghoul Expired is a suicide troop.
- Ghoul Rictus carries a giant chainsaw whose blade can be ejected and literally ridden on.
- Ghoul Devourer, a favorite of Vay Hek, is a giant that carries two wrist-mounted hooks on each hand.
- Main article: Ghoul Auger
The Ghoul Auger is a Grineer Ghoul armed with drills that allow it to quickly dig underground and ambush their foe. Attached to these weapons are fuel canisters, doubling as a flamethrower. As with all Ghouls, on death they will release a cloud that inflicts Cold and Toxin.
- Main article: Ghoul Devourer
The Ghoul Devourer is a Grineer Ghoul that is considered Vay Hek's personal favorite. Despite its massive girth, it is armed with a powerful wrist-mounted hook that allows it to close the distance between it and its target. As with all Ghouls, on death they will release a cloud that inflicts Cold and Toxin.
- Main article: Ghoul Expired
The Ghoul Expired is a Grineer Ghoul that suffered from malnutrition or poisoning during the early parts of its development, causing their nervous systems to drive them forward and function as an ideal suicide troop. Aiding them in this task are a pair of shields with multiple bomblets strapped on. As with all Ghouls, on death they will release a cloud that inflicts Cold and Toxin.
- Main article: Ghoul Rictus
The Ghoul Rictus is a Grineer Ghoul armed with a large saw. These saws can be ejected similar to the Panthera's Alternate Fire, traveling a distance before returning to them. The Rictus also has the uncanny ability to ride on the ejected saws, allowing them to approach and ram their enemies from afar. As with all Ghouls, on death they will release a cloud that inflicts Cold and Toxin.
- According to The Ascension webcomic, the Ghoul bags can be deployed from orbit, which will "plant" themselves into the ground. They are meant as a cheap and fast method of a ground invasion of a planet, without requiring the deployment of more advanced troops.
- WARFRAME's first series of comics are named after these breed of clones.