View Full Version : The Dwarf Horde..........Is it possible?

20-09-2005, 21:23
This is my first post and I need some help with an idea I have been working on for some time.


I used to play Matt York (of Skaven fame) on a regular basis when I lived in Pennsylvania. I faced his rat horde many times with my empire list and was handed my head regularly. For those of you who do not know Matt runs a list that looks someting like this:

Between 270 and 300+ rats in units of 25 (4 units of slaves/5+ units of clan rats) deployed in a fromation that looks just like a "Roman Legion" (ie a checkerboard). Matt is the king of "Ranks and flanks". His record at US GT's proves this.

My idea: A Dwarf Legion/Horde

Right now the 2250 point list has 3 heros (two thanes (one is the army standard) and a runesmith), 9 units of warriors (20 strong with full command, heavy armor and shield), and 5 bolt thowers.

Very few runes.

Now here are the questions: Could the Dwarf horde work? The biggest problem I see is Dwarf speed...or lack there of. Has anyone had any luck with a dwarf horde? Are there any other lists out there? Will the lack of speed kill this list?


Fallen Scholar

21-09-2005, 00:08
I'm pretty sure it could work. You will need to play agressively with it though. Hell, a dwarven horde backed up by lots of solid Bolt Thrower supporting fire is one of the most scary lists I could imagine facing with my army. The army standard is the one with the +1 CR to everyone within 12" right? I can see this army being very scary with that.

Ranks and flanks is the word! Stick around until you can get a warrior unit in the flank of the enemy. And sticking around is what dwarves do best. And the bolt throwers to take care of any fast flankers like giants and cavalry. Yes, if you know how to play horde-style, I can see this army as being very nasty indeed.

Any swarms or chaos spawn will severely damage your battle plan though.

21-09-2005, 03:37
The only recommendation I'd make is to drop the non-BSB thane and use the points to give some of your units great weapons.

Tormentor of Slaanesh
21-09-2005, 19:09
you need great weapons on at least some units. my army has a great weapon unit led by a thane as a flaning unit. once my main troops are engaged they charge, yes dwarfs charge, and win combats. think empire detachments.

22-09-2005, 16:59
ouch you wouldn't go for any of the special choiced infantry, and yes great wepons will help alot on a unit or two like already said

User Name
22-09-2005, 21:30
at least one unit of ironbreakers and a BSB with a sturbon banner in a bigger then average unit with great weapons. Theres also that nice rune that gives +1 to all units withing 12

22-09-2005, 22:02
I'm not convinced :eyebrows:

- Having lots of fully-ranked units almost always forces you to deploy across the entire length of the battle-field ... this kind of deployment is at a big disadvantage when facing a refused flank.

- Dwarves don't have the speed to re-deploy sufficiently during the battle.

- If your opponent manages to lock your centre into combat with something that won't break, he has effectively neutralized both the centre and the opposite flank of your troops ... leaving you with just about a third of your army to face the enemy.

A Dwarven regiment may be very impressive if it gets into battle on it's own terms, but against an opponent with a combat oriented and more mobile force that's most often not going to happen.

Go for balance between shooting and combat I would say.


22-09-2005, 22:46
Go for balance between shooting and combat I would say.


Of course that would be more effective. However, the question was wether it is a plausible army, and I believe it is. Will it suffer against some enemies? Sure. Then again, so do every army in the game. ;)

23-09-2005, 08:59
I play a dwarven warrior horde armylist. It works really well against most oppponants including skaven.

But the biggest advantages against large sized armies should be found in deployment, not army sellection. Deploying in such a way that he can't get his numbers to bare on units is key.

Refused flank is a basic tactic that you should look into, the big advantage dwarves have over empire for example is that they can take damage, they can lose combat and stay on the board, this mean you can sit them in a corner and exspect them not to run from panic or losing combat by one or two points. Cramming them in a corner makes it harder for your 250+ opponants to get SUPPORTED charges off against your units .... usually and dwarf unit(even warriors) can take the avarge infrantry charge and hang around throughout the battle. Its extremely hard to get rare and flank charges against a well set up refused flank and well, the bane of most infrantry lists.

The big problem with this is that you might win the battle, but lose the war. Trying to get out of the position and trying the contest areas of the board grab victory points senerios will always be a problem for the dwarves.

The basic overview I have for my horde is to use, cheep, but well worth their points units, which are warriors, x.bows and B.throws, all can earn their points back, all can fullfill and certain roll on the battle feild, but all are flexible and cheep enough to deal with rank and fiile troops.

The two basic tactics I use is to negate and to draw.

Dwarves can negate an opponants turn phases very well. Scouts, miners and gyrocoptors negate march movements, 2 x rune smiths negates magic phases. Use x.bows to target support units like light cavalry . Heavily target an enemy heavy-hitting units with bolt throwers to take it out of the game. Negate your oponants options, dwarf warriors are one of the best units for taking on enemy unit one on one.

Draw your opponants into your defenses by a hell round of a shooting phase, I use 30-40 X.bows and 8 B.throwers. Pick out and heavily target elite units with B.throwers, take out lighter options with your X.bows, secondly go to work on his rank and file, both units do well against ranked up units.

Against skaven, stagate his battleline with march blockers so he fines it hard support units in combat, target his first wave of units with ranged attacks. Target clan rats out side the 12" of the range of the general and try to panic them. Flee, personally I'd perfer to flee some of combat(knowing that dwaves usually rally)if this is going to stagnate his attack-plan, gives me a better counter attacks, permits me another good shooting phase.

23-09-2005, 10:12
That would be pretty much the epitome of the Dwarven shield wall. Stick troops that will take a charge and not flee (pretty much any Dwarven unit, mainly Longbeards/Hammerers with Hero or Lord/Ironbreakers) to anchor the line and base it around that.

Tormentor of Slaanesh
23-09-2005, 20:56
oh yes, have more shooting and then a thane led rangers unit to die but slow the enemy down.