View Full Version : Are dwarf lists without the anvil really viable?

26-11-2007, 12:52
The title speaks for itself.

I've been playing dwarfs since the 6th edition came out, so I think I can consider myself a "veteran" dwarf player. I've tried to build many lists without the anvil (the normal one, not thorek's) but really, M3 limits the tactics of the army to "jump the movement phase and shoot the hell on your opponent"... almost every army can outmaneuvre dwarf fighty units, meaning that your opponent can always choose at least the combats, if not even the side of the unit he will charge in. I saw this yesterday at a local tournament, in the first mission (the name is veto IIRC) my opponent (playing empire) took out of my list 850 points, including wisely the anvil and some warmachines. Result: I was obliged to march upon his lines under the fire of his two cannons and handgunners, only to manage to charge two 100 points units of the latter on turn 6. He simply avoided my big units and I struggled to get a lucky draw (for 3 mere points he didn't get a minor victory).

Apart from the particular situation given by the mission, I feel that without an anvil dwarfs encounter big troubles in beating anything that doesn't run yelling towards them, and even if that's the case a canny opponent will pick the combats he likes most and where he's sure to win on the charge.

Without the anvil we are left with two choices:

- an almost all shooty list: it's a bit of hit or miss... sometimes you get massacred, sometimes (fewer) you massacre.

- a fighty units heavy list, with BSB, hammerers, oath stone and smaller supporting units. The main drawback is that this list "could" lose bad against a gunline, a magic heavy army, any canny player with hard hitting cavalry, and the best I can expect against wood elves it's a draw.

So, again the question is: given the M3 of dwarfs, is a dwarf list without the movement denying or boosting anvil viable either in a tournament or casual environment?


26-11-2007, 13:03
I often use a non-anvil dwarf list, and it doesnt do too badly. I have no shooty infantry in it, just warmachines, combat troops and heroes.

26-11-2007, 13:07
Well, i dont see why not to be honest - you can take miners and rangers to get some of your units into combat early on, and can to a degree pick your fights as well with a rune of challenge to force specific units to attack you on your own terms. Combine that with gyrocopters to marchblock and steam T3 units, not to mention archers and possibly even warmachines.

Not only that, but with some of the hardest infantry on the game, as well as unbreakable slayers it should be possible to weather the storm. Id say usage of runed banners are handy, especially making the unit immune to fear and terror.

Keeping your flanks protected is one of the trickier things i think for dwarves, and ive seen them rolled up by fear causing units (such as black knights) on more than one occasion. Having things like slayers to keep the line from collapsing helps there of course, as do hammerers with a Lord in it - which are pretty much impossible to shift.

Strollaz' rune can also be useful, but of course thats using up a BSB if you take it, especially for getting things like thunderers in range for turn 1, as well as effectively putting you a turn closer to the enemy.

26-11-2007, 14:34
The comments are well thought. Let me say a thing or two though:

- at first, a disclaimer. I wasn't arguing that non-anvil lists can't be built effectively knowing who you'll face, but how well these lists performs on competitive or simply casual play? What I was pointing out is that even at a cost of 400ish points, and a lord and hero choice, the anvil is sooo much better than any other option (even, IMHO, the super tooled up dwarf lord, who still has M3).

- Red_Duke, you're right in indicating slayers, miners, hammerers and warmachines as possible solutions, but since they're all special choices at 2000 points you may field at most 4 (5 if you take two bolt throwers) of these units. You can protect one of your flanks with the board edge, but you can't simply do well with a slow moving army against, say, an empire or skaven gunline, or a good magic heavy list, which will outshoot you and kill the slayers before they can have a real role in the game (even with the 5+ save by a nearby MR of Grungni).

- the MR of challenge works wonders, unless the target is immune to psychology (undead, and many units with magical banners or special rules). Furthermore, you only deal with one unit, which is better than a kick in the dark, but not always decisive. Lastly, in the first turns your opponent can still choose to flee and regroup later, since it has plenty of time to return and charge again (you won't have moved that far in the meanwhile)

- I used strollaz rune sometimes, but it's expensive, and I found it effective only in conjunction with the anvil's extra movement.

- If you want to go fighty, you'll have to include say, a lord, a thane/dragon slayer, maybe a BSB and one runepriest for magical defense. The result is that you're still in your opponent's hands during the movement phase, your characters can't cover all the battle line (even if said line is short), and your magic defense will hold until the opponent doesn't carry 3 mages. The anvil, while sucking up a lord and a hero choice, gives you a great tactical advantage AND contextually a good magic defense (7 DD + all the scrolls you may want to add).

- As said before, at 2000 points players are limited to 4 special choices. Two units of ten slayers, hammerers and two bolt throwers is the ideal setup I guess, but you have to back up your shooting with quarrellers and thunderers, and then adding at least one big unit of warriors with shields and HtH weapons.

- Now (vs a combat oriented opponent) the big issue is: how to set up the units during deployment in a way they could support each other? having M3 limits you again, even if you can always march. charging the most external unit in the line with two high-movement cavalry or infantry should lead your infantry to flee or be destroyed on the charge, unless they are hammerers. This leaves the hammerers' deployment point almost fixed...

- vs a shooting oriented army, unless you go shooting heavy as well, your only choice is to gather around the MR of Grungni, raise shields and march forward for 3+ turns: very dwarfish, but not so amusing.

- miners, without the anvil, are simply not so strong as they can be avoided easily: under the 7th edition rules they may not march on the turn they arrive, so for most opponents the choice is simply to move away. If there's not enough room, the opponent will easily reform to face the miners, and even with great weapons a ranked up unit is a tough target for them.
A MSU unit can still take care of a warmachine or two, but it will take a special choice as well, something that dwarf players seems always to be short of :D

I want to point out that these are only my thoughts and arguments, I'm not argumenting against noone, and I'll be pleased to change my mind about the starting question :D


EDIT: oh, sorry for the long post

26-11-2007, 14:59
Well, you make good points - and id agree that the Anvil is generally a more effective (and arguably cost effective) way of doing well with dwarves, although of course does come with its downsides, that of blowing up, and suffering against armies like TK or VC for instance, which can pop stuff up in front of it and get it bogged down early on in the game.

I think as far as vs shooty armies go, then while to a degree every CC army has problems against gunlines, although vs skaven a few crossbowmen can take out the worst of it (i.e. ratlings) thanks to 7th edition, Empire is a different matter however, and i think for them you really do need a bit of shooty stuff yourself to deal with things.

I think that its necessary to be a tad more cagey perhaps with a CC orientated dwarf army - especially vs gunlines, keeping behind as much cover as possible, especially to help cover flanks, and using any available terrain to avoid the worst of the shooting as they (slowly) advance.

Vs Cav armies, the trick is simply holding that charge - something that Dwarves are pretty well built for imo - especially when you can take tests on a single dice with the right runes - not to mention all that stubborn goodness. After that, other than their great AS, cav tends to suck. especially against heavily armoured and tough dwarves.

Empire btw id consider horrible for many armies to play against however after their revamp, so theyre always going to be one of the tougher opponents id say!

26-11-2007, 15:31
Dwarves without a Anvil is just a viable as Empire without a Warlter and 2Stanks, or WE without 2 TM and a BSB.

Is it effective, yes. Is it mandatory at all, of course not. Dwarve still have some of the hardest core troops for a decent prices, and probably paired with Empire with the best shooting in the game.

Also like the builds listed above, is every Dwarf Throng gonna have an Anvil....of course not, they are pretty rare. So feel free to not use one, even feel free to still use Miners and such, as they are still great even without it.

If you look at the develpers point of view, YES dwarfs are slow, they are supposed to be, but in exchange your rock hard and you have enough good shooting to make the enemy not want to exchange volleys

heretics bane
26-11-2007, 16:40
ive rarely saw an anvil being used to be honest, ive heard them constantly discussed adna as a verteran Dwarf player i have never used on eat all. I just use a good few warmachines, plenty of stubborn warriors,longbeards etc. and a missile unit or two to back them up

26-11-2007, 17:08
oh ive seen it all now.

Dwarves are one of the strongest races in the game.

They really really dont need a anvil...

Chicago Slim
26-11-2007, 17:37
My roommate runs a wicked 2000 point army, with a ton of fighting that runs right down the enemy's throat: three big blocks (25-30) of infantry (Hammerers, Longbeards and Ironbreakers) in the center, with a smaller (10-15) unit of Slayers at the end (so the flanks are covered by unbreakable slayers on one side, and stubborn-9 hammerers on the other-- no way to roll up his flanks and cascade across to the units that might actually suffer some from being flanked).

Each of those three blocks pretty much kills whatever it touches, and the rest of his points are in shooting (and a bit of antimagic), so if I just try to deny him contact, I lose some small units to his handguns, cannons and bolt throwers. It's a tough nut to crack. Sometimes I can outshoot him (but his fighting units are hard to kill with shooting, and have plenty of extra guys, so even if I kill 10 of them, they're a viable fighting force on arrival). Sometimes I can outmanuever him so badly that I roll around to the rear of his Ironbreakers or Longbeards, with enough force to break one of them. Sometimes I can put enough heat on the Slayers to kill them all, in time to still chip at the flank of the Ironbreakers. Sometimes I'm able to bring a ton of Fear-causers to bear, and autobreak his Hammerers. But, none of them is easy to execute.

So, yeah, Dwarves without the Anvil can still rock-- instead of 400 points of anvil, he brings 400 more points of hard death, which (with Strollaz Rune) can be in my deployment zone by the end of turn 5.

26-11-2007, 17:40
Hmm, thats not quite getting to what's been discussed im afraid...

And thats 'an' anvil ;)

Actually btw, I've generally heard the consensus to be that a Thorek dwarf list is considered one of the strongest armies available, while standard lists (especially non-anvil) to be considered generally fairly mid-tier.

Also, whats more being disucssed is the tactical considerations for infantry heavy, and how to deal with all the charges youre ineviably going to get, not to mention being shot to hell against a gunline...

26-11-2007, 19:18
Some answers:

@ redbaron998: you're bringing as examples two very competitive lists, built for winning tournaments. What I would say is "dwarfs without THOREK's anvil are still viable, without ANY anvil are a lot less viable". Empire or woodies can still do very well even without those assets.

@ heretics bane: again, I'm not saying that dwarfs without the anvil are unplayable. Try it on some games and you'll like it, even without ancient powers the thing still rocks.

@ W0lf: why?

@ Chicago Slim: by the end of turn 5 you can be everywhere on the battlefield. I obviously agree with you that once in combat dwarf units are amongst the best of the game, but they are easy to avoid. Then pick a unit with a combined front/flank charge and they'll run (slowly) exactly as every other unit (except for the hammerers and unbreakable slayers). Shoot to death the trousers-equipped slayers and you'll have an exposed flank to deal with.

@ Red_Duke: thanks. I agree with you (and almost all who played against it) that the "thorek gunline" is one of the most hard hitting and powerful lists available, but as you noticed I was referring to a normal anvil, thanks for pointing that out.


Grand Warlord
26-11-2007, 19:50
I use to field the Anvil but it really didn't do a whole lot, so I took it out and started supplimenting it with Quarrellers, Grudgethrower, and Master Engineer led cannon.

And I definately enjoy it more than I did with the Anvil.

Voodoo Boyz
26-11-2007, 20:27
I'm not as good at Fantasy as I am at 40k, but as a Dwarf Player who's played a few games vs. tournament lists, the Anvil is an equalizer to stand up to other tournament lists.

Play against all Cav Brett lists with the anvil and win, or play without it and lose. That just seems to be my experience. Likewise my games vs. undead armies turned out into draws or massacres when I took a balanced list without an anvil since they just avoided me till they were ready to hit at once and break me down.

With the Anvil, worlds of possibilities open up for Dwarfs that let you take down the hard lists in ways you never could previously.

26-11-2007, 23:26
The army I fear the most is Dwarfs. With or without the anvil. I have a Dwarf army, don't play it as much as my Empire, but find a Dwarf Lord in a unit of Hammer's is simply nails tough. With a Dwarf Lord you have to bring enough shooting so the enemy doesn't want to sit back, but get to your line quickly. Once he gets there you should have plenty of Stubborn, Unbreakable, units around to handle him.
And I know they are slow, but once the enemy is close, they are the fastest infantry in the game! Faster than Elves! Which seems weird but ok....

27-11-2007, 02:30
For my own part, the few times I've tried using the anvil it has tended to have minimal effect or misfire, and at least once blew itself up, even without using the suicide overload setting. Quite honestly, it is a massive chunk of points on a general that provides no leadership bonus, and is completely immobile and incapable of joining a unit, so isn't going to be any help with the fighting either. For me, that's just too big a drawback when combined with the ridiculous unreliability of the runes. Sure, if I use the suicide overload every turn and get away with it's insanely powerful, but it's equally likely to fail completely.
As for the competetiveness of the army without the anvil, I'm inclined to say it's tricky to use right, but powerful in its own way. Perhaps I've just been lucky in my opponents, but I generally manage to put up a good fight, and have claimed my share of victories. As a general, the dwarf lord contributes a lot to most of them. I will admit you are probably right that a pure combat based army is liable to do badly against a defensive force, which is one reason I'm rarely entirely without missile fire, but that's rarely an insurmountable weakness.

Chicago Slim
27-11-2007, 02:51
@ Chicago Slim: by the end of turn 5 you can be everywhere on the battlefield. I obviously agree with you that once in combat dwarf units are amongst the best of the game, but they are easy to avoid. Then pick a unit with a combined front/flank charge and they'll run (slowly) exactly as every other unit (except for the hammerers and unbreakable slayers). Shoot to death the trousers-equipped slayers and you'll have an exposed flank to deal with.

Quite right-- if you're running Dwarf gropo infantry, you need to protect your flanks (isn't that what I said?) Packing units in tight, with hammerers and slayers on the ends, does that.

Shooting 15 slayers to death, in four turns, isn't a trivial task. Even in the best case, if I'm fielding an Empire gunline, I'll wound one with every fifth shot on average (1/3 to hit long, 1/2 to hit short, times 1/2 wound = 1/6 or 1/4). Fifteen times 5 is 75 shots to wipe out the whole unit. In order to take advantage of the whole in the flank that that creates, I need to have finished that shooting by turn 3, which means an average of 25 handgunners, all with LOS, dedicated to that one unit. And that's assuming average luck in the shooting phase-- if the shooting goes badly, then I'd better hope that my flanking unit has a good round of close combat, and blows through the few remaining slayers, before his longbeards come eat my handguns and artillery...

The rest of the dwarven army, meanwhile, can take its share of shooting, too (that's why you brought units of 25-30 models each). The Ironbreakers just aren't going to be shot. So, as the Gunline player, I can soften up the Hammerers (a pretty pointless exercise), or focus on the longbeards in the middle-- as the Dwarf player, you're fine with that-- if the Longbeards eat it on the way in, the Hammerers and Ironbreakers will chew through my weedy little missile troops without them.

Now, I'm not saying that a gunline cannot beat even a well-built and well-executed Dwarven infantry army-- I'm saying that a well-built and well-executed Dwarven infantry army is a tough nut for anyone to crack, including an Empire Gunline.

Me, I'm mostly a "manuever" player (wood elves, high elves, beastmen/marauders)-- I like to get into the flanks as soon and as often as possible. Against a good Dwarven infantry build, I start planning from turn 1, how I'm going to kill those Slayers (if you hit them from three sides, with decent fighting troops, they go down in a turn or two-- time enough to regroup and start pounding on the Dwarven center...)

27-11-2007, 08:30
Are you serious?

Of course they are! Hell, in my opinion the anvil is a near 500 point time bomb that is one of the most unreliable pieces of 'technology' in the game.

when I write dwarf lists, I steer clear of that thing.

27-11-2007, 09:21
@ Shank: the empire is one of the biggest issues for a non-anvil dwarf army. They are the only army that can rival their firepower, and have plenty of heavy cavalry (troop choice) to flank the enemy. Not to mention that to stop an hammerers unit with a lord the best option is a 20-strong flagellants unit.

@ Atzcapotzalco (& Alathir): by your own admission, you used it in a few games: if in these games it had minimal effect, IMHO you were unlucky or unable to use it correctly. "ridiculous unreliability"? :wtf:? As I already said, the thing rocks even without using ancient powers. On a 2+ (=83% of the times, not so ridicolous) you can have one of your unit get a charge to a target 12" (:eek:) away from the point your unit was at the start of the turn. Or ruin your opponent's plan by forcing his big cavalry of doom to not march (or to move a mere 3,5"/4" if a gyrocopter is lurking around)
The leadership bonus isn't going to affect your line that much, since a basic Ld9 is more than enough to deal with a number of situations (if you fail a Ld7 panic test your plan is failing 'cause your general is too distant, if you're failing a Ld9 panic test you're unlucky!). Getting a BSB can help, too.
I agree with the last part of your post. Again, I'm not saying that a non-anvil list is unplayable, but maybe is TOO tricky to use.

@ Chicago Slim: your math is correct, but bring in an hellblaster or two and soon you'll solve the slayers problem. The empire can deal with dwarven warmachines using its own cannons, to protect the two hellblasters. And why you won't fire at the ironbreakers? Sure they have T4 but with handguns they save at 5+: it's like to say "don't shoot at heavy cavalry"... plus they have M3 so you're going to get more than one shooting phase against them.


Now, some of the "tactical" thoughts that led me to ask the opening question: I asked myself: "what are the main drawbacks of dwarfs?"

- Your opponent leads the movement phase, that is to say that your opponent leads the game. He can fight you wherever he wants as long as he brings with himself a few units of cavalry, is an elf, skaven, BoC, ogre, or has a unit with a movement of 5+. He shoots down the gyrocopters (by means of magic or fire) and he's free to move around. By turn 4, a canny opponent has units on both your flanks, has never been in combat with you, has wiped out the unbreakable/stubborn unit on one of the flanks and is ready to charge. In the meanwhile, since you're forced to face the treaths coming from the sides, you're spreading your army's front (meaning that your units can't no more support each other).
The anvil solves this problem? yes. Bring in a miner unit and get an immediate charge on the back of one of the flanking units. They'll run away towards your lines, and will be likely to be destroyed. The rune of wrath and ruin can slow down a flanker unit per turn, meaning that you have more time to take care of it with your shooting, or that you're denying your opponent the chance to place it correctly. Use the anvil to charge the enemy cavalry, thus denying the lance bonus. They'll run away. Hell, you can even reform and charge in the same turn, that's like having all skirmishers advantages with a ranked up unit!

- Fast cavalry, flyers, skirmishers annoy your precious warmachines: the rune of wrath and ruin can do immense damage to this units, which usually are less numerous and armoured than the rest of the opponent's army. You are likely to force a panic test on them with only two kills, and they will usually be far from the genral, so they'll test on their basic Ld. The anvil does magical attacks too, useful when you face forest spirits or daemons.

- Dwarfs are commonly thought as a defensive army. Even if you advance towards the enemy, he's more likely to pick the combat he wants. Now you can change all this. Bring an anvil and play aggressively. You'll like it. My opponents are usually astonished when on my first turn I move half of my army towards them!

- Dwarfs are in troubles vs fear-causing outnumbering enemies (usually armies, think at the undead): the rune of hearth & hold can make your entire army immune to fear and terror for one turn! (even if at 4+)

Last but not least, the anvil alone gives you a decent magic protection, so you don't need to waste more precious hero slots for runepriests.
IMHO, its only drawback is that if it blows up, you can concede the game: this is not going to happen so often though.

With the Anvil, worlds of possibilities open up for Dwarfs that let you take down the hard lists in ways you never could previously.

Instead of writing this loong post, I should have better quoted Voodoo Boyz


28-11-2007, 16:17
I'm fairly new to warhammer and dwarves(not quite a year) but here is what I have found.

I am pretty bare bones about my army, I tend to take a lot of core troops, and leave any specials for cannons and bolt throwers. I don't even own any hammerers, slayers or ironbreakers.

I think the anvil is great in games of greater than 2000 points. That is the point where the board is big enough and full enough that I need to start worrying about outmaneuvering my opponent.

Any less than 2000 points then I tend to do well without the anvil.

I've never played against an empire army, but so far the only army I fear (read: can't figure out how to beat) is Chaos.

28-11-2007, 23:48
[QUOTE=Toschenko;2130619]@ Shank: the empire is one of the biggest issues for a non-anvil dwarf army. They are the only army that can rival their firepower, and have plenty of heavy cavalry (troop choice) to flank the enemy. Not to mention that to stop an hammerers unit with a lord the best option is a 20-strong flagellants unit.

Flagellants now are basically a glorified swarm unit. Granted, they do hit very hard if the get the charge but after that, with WS2 and T3 no armor they drop real fast. If Hammers with a Lord did get charged by Flagellants, forgo the Great Weapon and go hand weapon sheild. Then, if you get charged in the flank, drop the Oath stone. Slaughtering the Flagellants will pile on the Combat Res. Add that to your ranks, standard, stubborn ,Dwarf Lord with Axe loaded with deadly runes and you should wipe away the opponent.

29-11-2007, 07:56
Flagellants now are basically a glorified swarm unit. Granted, they do hit very hard if the get the charge but after that, with WS2 and T3 no armor they drop real fast. If Hammers with a Lord did get charged by Flagellants, forgo the Great Weapon and go hand weapon sheild. Then, if you get charged in the flank, drop the Oath stone. Slaughtering the Flagellants will pile on the Combat Res. Add that to your ranks, standard, stubborn ,Dwarf Lord with Axe loaded with deadly runes and you should wipe away the opponent.

Even with 10 attacks on the front rank (5 from hammerers and say 5 from the lord), and even if all these attacks manage to wound, they need two turns to be wiped away (three is more realistic) meaning that since you spent at least three turns to get into combat, they will get only the flagellants' points. I'm not obviously saying that flagellants would beat hammerers in combat, but they are the perfect tarpit for a unit that costs nearly 500 points :eek:


29-11-2007, 08:47
In my gaming club we have two Dwarven players both of them with ultra competitive lists.

First guy uses NO shooting BSB Strollasz, Runesmith, Two Slayer Characters Three slayer units (including a 10 man Giant Slayer unit which rocks if protected right), Longbeards, Hammerers and small units of warriors all banners runed up and we march...

Second guy uses a full gunline list with 2 units of 10thuderers, four master engineers, 5 runed up artillery pieces 4 (entrenched),a small block of LB's, rangers, warriors and 2 Gyros. Now this list can march block and bomb the ... out of almost everything. I have never seen anything like it. I have heard from many people saying that the Anvil/Rangers/miners combo wins games in turn 2, well how about winning them in turn 1.
I have seen it with my own eyes the guy took out with shooting three Bret lances in round one (panic-tests) out of five.

There are many players out there who are used to dealing with the Anvil. That is the only reason why the anvil shouldnt be included if you ask me.

Are dwarf lists without the anvil really viable? Well if you ask me in "serious" gaming ONLY non Anvil lists are viable now...

Cheers fdr

29-11-2007, 17:16

Hell I'll tell you a little story.

A few months back everyone was preparing for a tournament and a league.

The tournament was a 2250 point one up north somewhere, aberdeen or something dunno I didn't go.

The league was the elg's first 'slayer cup' which was an odd little league where taking beardy armies and smashing everyone and coming first would get you less kudos than having a kinda silly army, everyone got a basic dragonslayer to run around and get killed.

Now I was trying out my slayer cup list. And being a dwarf player and it being the -slayer- cup I decided to break with tradition and not use my lord (used the anvil three or four times since the new book came out) nope, instead I hauled out my demon slayer, dumped two runes of fury and the master rune of alric the mad on him and shoved him in a unit of slayers.

Played one slayer cup list first (against a guy with woodelves who's -far- better than me) and watched the demonslayer quite happily get right the way across the board and slaughter a unit of dryads and a unit of wardancers along the way, then get shot down by a hell of alot of gladeguard.

Thats not right, just good luck, after all, those wardancers really should have had him. I thought to myself.

Second game was against one of the tourney lists. So I'm down 250 points. not much but enough.

Demonslayer killed teradons, then sarus, then a whole unit of sarus cav (in a challange with a different unit when they charged, won that, came out, and started ignoring alot of armour saves) and would have killed the old blood leading them if I didn't roll six ones for his attacks that turn (that would be the wardancers karma catching up).

Game after was against a chaos player who, I was told after the game by the other chaos players and staff, was cheating, and also using a tournament list.....

Well lets just say the chosen warriors and knights cost alot more than mister mohawk.

He went on to perform consistantly well throughout the whole league.

Moral of the story?

A fivehundred point lord and hero choice that sits in your backfield and messes with things occasionaly isn't better than a 2-3 hundred point lord that kills units.

Oh and have you seen the new high elf magic items? Good luck getting those high powers off now. I'll stick to my guys who break faces.

Oh and the anvil is alright for making your entire army immune to fear, on a 4+, every turn.......

A lord letting you take two units of longbeards to your one unit of ten great weapon wielding warriors is better. Sure, the 100 point unit can flee from fear. Your gonna have to break the rest of the army the hard way though.

And we're talking dwarfs here. The hard way is granite.

29-11-2007, 20:19
That's a lot of well thought comments, thanks to all of you guys.

@ Sedekiel: you suggest two extreme lists. The first... mmh, I don't know. It's really rock hard in combat, but the problem lies always there, even when advancing compact and with units side by side, a canny opponent will withdraw from combat and blast the army with shooting/magic, since he doesn't have to worry about your shooting phase. The second list is tough, very tough to beat I must admit, but I think noone would play with me a second time :D... but since we're talking about a specific question, this list can be a viable alternative to an anvil-powered one, good point.
I'm not agreeing with you on the last thing you say, though. There are many opponents that cannot really deal with the anvil, since it's supposed to be deployed well out of the enemy's reach and line of sight, and its powers can't be dispelled. There are a few with units that can enter play from your side of the table (ogres, khemri, skaven, other dwarfs) but (apart from the miners) the runelord can deal quite easily with them. I tend to kit mine with rune of preservation and a 1+ AS, and if I'm facing one of those armies I deploy nearby a MSU of quarrellers with shields just to help. Other armies, apart from the new HE and their fancy piece of equipment, simply can't contrast it. This, IMHO, IS one of the principal reasons of including it in a dwarf army.

@ leo_neil316: the fact is, your daemonslayer (who, kitted out as you fielded him, is a combat beast) has been in combat for most of the games, since he payed his points back more than once. Vs some opponents who can't do anything else than engaging you in combat (bretonnia comes to mind, but also some builds for lizardmen and chaos) a fighty dwarf list is going to perform well, since they are stonger than the average of close combat units around.
If I were the WE player though, I'd never never never (did I say never?) engaged in combat with you, or letting you to engage one of my units. This is the main drawback of footslogging dwarfs. If your opponent doesn't want to fight you, he can more or less (depending on his army) easily avoid your units and, if this is the case, the most you are going to get from the game is a minor victory (in which your warmachines and shooting units do the dirty job - that is collecting victory points). Maybe I'm stretching it a bit, but I'm not too far from reality.
On the last of your points: getting to reroll a 2+ isn't the worst thing in life, but surely ancient powers become unplayable. I tend to use ancient powers only if I'm in serious trouble, since it's risky: but trying to get immunity to fear and terror at 4+ isn't too shabby in a turn in which you're going to be charged by multiple undead units. Something is better than nothing (in this case).
The HE magic object (of which I don't recall the name) cost 35 points though, so you're not going to see it in most tournaments.

From this (interesting) discussion, I'm starting to feel like I'm the only who use regularly the anvil... maybe I'm too much modern for a dwarf :D

Keep the comments coming if you have something to add,


Voodoo Boyz
29-11-2007, 20:33
Yeah, my experiences mirror what you're saying Toschenko.

I'm not the kind of Dwarf to just sit there and shoot, I want to move. So I take a LOT of combat blocks without my Anvil at 2k. I strive for about 4 blocks when possible, 2 units of warriors, 1 longbeards, and one Hammerers.

I've faced armies like both VC, TK, and others who just wouldn't come fight because they knew they couldn't win. It sucked, a lot.

And then there are lists like all Cav Bretts which just see your blocks, and your shooting, make it through the 2 turns of shooting and then double charge non stubborn blocks and roll your army. Setting it up so they're safe to charge and ensure you can't flee. This also sucks.

With an Anvil, these kinds of problems go away. :D

29-11-2007, 21:52
This is my 2250pt Dwarf list and it is an aggressive army, combat oriented army. I find that Dwarf Warriors are generally tough enough and cheap enough to withstand 4 turns of shooting before reaching the enemy. Miners, Rangers, and judicious use of my own missle fire helps to buy time and disrupt my enemy so that my Warriors make it to battle without too much of a fuss.

Runesmith /w Sh, RoSpellbreaking, MRoChallenge (Joins Hammerers)
Thane BSB /w MRoGromril (Joins Longbeards)

25 Dwarf Warriors /w Shields, Mus, Std
24 Dwarf Warriors /w Shields, Mus, Std
24 Dwarf Warriors /w Shields, Mus, Std
19 Longbeards /w Shields, GW, Full Command, RoStoicism
17 Hammerers /w Shields, Full Command, RoCourage

10 Rangers /w GW, HA, Shields
8 Miners

10 Quarrelers
10 Thunderers
1 Bolt Thrower /w Engineer, RoPenetration
1 Bolt Thrower /w Engineer
1 Cannon /w Engineer, RoFire

That is 161 T4, LD9 models on the table, 129 of which are at combat oriented models wearing at least heavy armor.

I think the problem alot of people have is that they think they need expensive characters to win combats. I find that I generally win through combat resolution or a combo of combat resolution and kills (against generally weaker troops that might outnumber me).

Dwarfs don't need the Anvil and they don't need to be a static shooting army...

Not to mention that to stop an hammerers unit with a lord the best option is a 20-strong flagellants unit.

Why are you deploying your Hammerers anywhere near his Flagellants? If they are near you, don't you have Rangers/Slayers/Miners/Warriors/etc. that can move ahead of the Hammerers and engage the Flagellants instead?