Thursday, March 6, 2014

A Tierable Dwarf Army

An interesting idea hit me the other day and I figured I would put it out there and get people's reactions. I believe the Dwarves are the most tier-ed army in fantasy. What I mean by tiered is the same basic type of troops just with various different choices at different point costs. So same basic gear but just better. Certainly every army has at least some of this, but often it is only two levels or tiers. I believe the Dwarves have the most tiers and the best choices with in those tiers so you can really build your army a number of different ways to do the same thing. To through out some non-Dwarven examples, the Bretonian knights, the Beastmen Ungor-Gor-Bestigor. I believe the Dwarves have 4 different tiers types, or basic troop types.

 1. The guys built to take damage, well yeah their dwarves its what they do.
2. The guys built to dish out heavy damage in combat, basically guys with great weapons.
3. The guys to deal damage at range, the infantry shootie choices.
4. Artillery, nuff said.

1. Damage takers

  1. Dwarven warriors, handweapon, shield heavy armor, 9pts. 4+ armor save, with upgradeable dwarven parry, basic troop choice lowest tier
  2. Longbeards, handweapon, shield and heavy armor, 13pts. Along with increased stats they are immune to psychology and have the 'grumblers' rule which allows units to reroll panic- allowing other units to take more damage before the break
  3. Ironbreakers: hand weapon, gromril armor & shield. 14pts. Extra armor pt, constant 5+ parry and ld10 ensure these guys last- I know right?
So no surprises or reaches here.

2. Damage dealers
  1. dwarven warriors, great weapon and heavy armor, 10pts.
  2. Longbeards, great weapon, heavy armor 14pts. Increased Strength and Weapon skill help
  3. Miners: great weapon and heavy armor, 10pts (12pts). I have these guys as the next step up because of their upgrades, champion can have a +3 Strength weapon along with the unit carries blasting charges that cost 2pts per model. Also the added factor to use them as ambushers to show up behind enemy lines.
  4. Hammers, heavy armor and great weapon (sensing a theme yet) 14pts. They have the same stats as longbeards but with an added attack making them quite hitty something the dwarven army needed.
  5. SLAYERS: slayer axes (your choice of two hand weapons or great weapon), 11/22pts. A lot of reasons these are my most hitty or dwarves, they have two levels, troll and giant slayers, giant slayers have additional weapons kill, strength, initiative and attack. Then they have the death blow attack, if they are killed in close combat the model gets 1 attack before being removed, meaning when they kill you, you do some damage in return great with low initiative. Then as slayers they have another special rule, they never wound on worse than a 4+. So what i like to do is just equip two hand weapons and roll as many 4s as i can, i don't worry about giving the extra strength, i would rather have more attacks that have a guaranteed damage output then fewer attacks that have better chances. Basically i would rather have more chances than a better chance of killing something.
So here i could see the argument of the arrangement i have, the miners and slayers could be moved to several different areas, especially dependent on how you built them

3. Shootie Infantry

  1. Quarellers/Thunderers: heavy armor and either dwarven crossbow or dwarven handgun, 12pts. Now that their points are the same and their equipment got upgraded I have a hard time saying which is better, crossbows have range and quick to fire, while hanguns have more punch but are slow to fire. 
  2. Rangers: heavy armor, dwarven crossbows, throwing axes and great weapons for 14pts. Crossbows for range, throwing axes when you get close and charge reactions. An interesting choice now, may considered adding some to my army.
  3. Irondrakes: basically ironbreakers with really cool guns at 15pts a model. Points are a bit steep especially for ballistic skill of 3, but "forge proven gromril armor" 4+ armor and 6+ ward, bumped to 2+ ward vs fire attacks; and drakeguns, range 18", s5, armor piercing, dwarf crafted, quick to fire and flaming attack. These guys do a lot of damage up close and have the stats to last in combat, a very interesting choice i will definitely be adding to my army.
4. The Big Guns: (these arent in order, and as everybody should know what they do I will only list)

  1. Bolt Thrower 55pts, poor mans cannon
  2. Grudge Thrower 80pts, I personally dont like stone throwers
  3. Cannon 120pts, not sure why they upped the points and you getting nothing new with it, works and costs just as much empire cannon even though it is a superior dwarven weapon
  4. Organ Gun 120pts, I need to get some of these, 2 artillery dice of s5 attacks
  5. Flame Cannon 140pts, even with new added super blast or whatever they call it range is a major major draw back and I probably wont get one 

To sum it up, guys in combat either built to dish out high Strength hits or survive punishment. Range has a nice mix now and you get plenty of artillery and plenty of choices with in each type. So let me know what you think, you don't agree whole the tiered concept, or that the dwarves are the most tiered, dont agree with the layout within the tiers, don't think a certain unit is correctly categorized etc etc. To go on the record I like this type of tiered army and I wish more armies had it, not all to maintain some difference and flavor between armies.

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