6th Edition Chaos Dwarf Army List Advice (and a question about hobgoblins)

Hello all!

I’ve just recently joined the ranks of the Dawi-Zharr and fulfilled a very old ambition to create an army in the style of the 90s Chaos Dwarfs (using 6th edition rules as a base with the hope of having a collection flexible enough to jump to 5th, 8th and possibly beyond should we show up in The Old World).

As I’m using 6th edition (Ravening Hordes) as a baseline I wanted to ask for some input on my list :slight_smile: I’m not striving for a highly competitive list and it’s mostly intended to be a rival to my dwarf army. But it would be good to get some ideas. I realise some of my units might be a tad under-strength at 15 models, so any thoughts on which desperately need shoring up and where to trim would be great.

So here’s the list. It’s a little over 2000pts to allow for some flexibility in choices:

Total: 2209

Characters

Lord on Great Taurus Demon 350
(Obsidian Blade +70, Armour of Gazrakh +30, shield +3)

Sorcerer (L2) (to be added to Blunderbuss unit) 100
(Power Stone +25, Power Stone +25)

Sorcerer (L2) (to be added to Warrior unit) 100
(Power Stone +25, Power Stone +25)

Bull Centaur Hero (to be added to Bull Centaur unit) 100
(Gauntlets of Bazhrakk the Cruel +20, Sword of Might +20, Enchanted Shield +10, Heavy Armour +4)

Core

Chaos Dwarf Warriors x15 (Champion, SB and M) (g/weapon, shields) 195

Chaos Dwarf Warriors x14 (Champion, SB and M) (g/weapon, shields) 184

Blunderbuss Dwarfs x14 (no special models) 168

Special

Black Orcs x15 (Champion, SB, M) (g/weapon, shields) 225

Orc Boyz x15 (No special models) (second hand weapon, shields) 105

Sneaky Gitz x40 (Champion, SB, M) 230

Rare

Bull Centaurs x5 (with heavy armour, shields, great weapons, hand weapons) 105

Earthshaker 110

A specific question I have is what to do with the hobgoblins. I’ve bought 40 “Hobgrot Slittaz” to use as hobgoblin proxies. I figured they would make excellent Sneaky Gitz but I could convert 20 of them into archers or give them all shields to serve as simple hobgoblin warriors. Any thoughts on this and as to which would be most useful to supplement the other units here?

Sneaky Gitz sound a little fragile to serve as a massed frontline unit (no armour) but they also sound like they’ll hit hard with their many poisoned attacks. I’m particularly fond of the tiered morale system Chaos Dwarfs have so using the hobgoblins as a frontline combat unit (with orcs behind them and black orcs at the rear) does appeal. I suppose another alternative could be two units of 20 Sneaky Gitz.

Anyhoo, I’d appreciate any opinions, ideas or general discussion on how Chaos Dwarfs work in 6th, 5th and 8th editions! Many thanks for any help!

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Cheers and welcome to the discourse forum! Great to see more and more people playing 6th edition Chaos Dwarfs. So I myself haven’t played 6th edition rules for a long time, but I can at least offer some general thoughts.

So first of all, are you limited by an existing model collection or do you use something like 3d printing or third-party models?

I would agree that the two 15 model Chaos Dwarf units could be a little small. 14 Blunderbusses should be fine though. 40 Sneaky Gitz on the other hand seems to be a rather large unit? Even if they are fragile and you need some models for their “lapping around” thing, I guess you could free up some points there and either add 5 Chaos Dwarf Warriors to one of the units or indeed get some regular Hobgoblins.
So all in all you have a lot of close combat units, 6 all in all (plus the Taurus), but only one missile unit and one war machine. Chaos Dwarfs and Black Orcs are certainly capable fighters, but there are a few better ones and you lack the firepower to weaken them before combat. Likewise a dedicated shooting army will force you to attack, and even with the Bull Centaurs you don’t have the most agile of forces. It might be worthwhile to invest in a Death Rocket Launcher?

For a possible use with 8th edition I can say a little more. Would you be using the Legion of Azgorh army list there or the one from the Warhammer Armies Project? (I assume the latter) 8th edition favours large infantry units, so for this edition you definitely need bigger units. Easiest would be just combining the two small Chaos Dwarf Warrior units into one large one. But the general idea is the same: You’d have a heavily close combat favoured army which is certainly capable against most enemies (at least their core units) but would be hard pressed against some of the more frightening close combat armies like a dedicated High Elves army or Chaos Warriors etc. (even if you don’t play competitively, which I also don’t do, it’s not so great if your army gets just wiped from the board :wink:)

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Thanks very much! :slight_smile:

Regarding model collection it’s a mixture- I have the official 90s Earthshaker (probably the only one I’ll be able to afford given their prices on eBay, haha, but I had to own one- I love the model). The warriors, centaurs, blunderbusses, centaur hero and one of the sorcerers are all printed using Fabelzel designs (love how Fabelzel captured that 90s aesthetic but made it look sharper and more up to date). The lord on taurus demon is the “Dainn Longbeard” mini from Lost Kingdom Miniatures (I plan on modelling a very big hat for him to bring him more in line with the others). I’m using a metal female chaos dwarf (alongside her son) from etzy for the other sorcerer(ess). The orc boyz are an old 6th edition box I had lying around (I figured they’d make a good fodder unit). The black orcs are present day GW “Ard Boyz” and the hobgoblins are “Hobgrot Slittaz”. So a rather eclectic mix! I’ve tried to dodge the high expense of an all-classic model army whilst trying to keep it pretty visually traditional. That said, I’ve still tried not to go overboard as my funds are limited and I didn’t want to overload my friend with print requests. He’s very kindly offered to do more in the future, though, so I could pay for another run of 10 more dwarf warriors to bring them up to 20 per unit at some point.

Would you say the black orcs also need to be at 20 strength? I remember reading dwarf tactics somewhere saying 15 strength units are good for 2-handed flankers but you need something more substantial for your “anvil”. Is that the case here? Unfortunately “Ardboyz” are sold in batches of 15, haha.

Regarding the Sneaky Gitz- they were a plan to provide a little flexibility. My original list used the maximum possible number of magic items to get to 2000pts and I wanted a buffer, so to speak, to let me change the list around if needed. I saw the models and thought “excellent- hobgoblins”. Popped on eBay and realised they were going incredibly cheap because of the Dominion box set. So I went a bit nuts and got double the original number I had planned.

As you say, it’s a big unit- I was thinking perhaps using 20 of them as archers instead? It wouldn’t take much effort to get some quivers and bows on the models. That would help with providing a little more ranged firepower, I’d guess. Or do you think they’d be better used as hobgoblin warriors with shields?

Nice idea regarding the rocket launcher! I’m not overly wild about the original model for it, though- any recommendations? I’ve noticed a cute little dude carrying a bazooka kinda thing on ebay. I wonder if I could use him somehow- perhaps with a stockpile of rockets and a friend carrying one to bring it to the appropriate size for the Death Rocket unit?

Something else I’ve been somewhat counting on is the two level 2 sorcerers. Will they provide a decent amount of ranged damage to supplement the cannon and (assuming I convert them) archers?

I honestly don’t know much about 8th and I’m not sure which list I’d use. The thinking was that 6th edition has cheaper individual unit-members than 5th (and more intense restrictions on composition) so if I built an army that worked in 6th I’d probably have the models for 5th too. I grew up with 5th and 6th (but didn’t play many proper games) so there is nostalgia, haha. The hope was that I’d likely have enough for 8th as well, should I ever go in that direction. Interesting regarding the larger unit sizes- if I remember correctly 8th drops the 3 core unit requirement so, as you say, I could merge the two warrior units :slight_smile:

Something I’ve looked for but been unable to find is a kind of unit overview and tactics guide for 6th edition Chaos Dwarfs. Would you know of anything like that? A kind of pros/cons for things like sneaky gitz vs hobgoblin warriors and their various uses would be nifty.

Thanks very much for all your help!

Edit: of course it just occurred to me that I could convert all 40 hobgoblins into archers, saving points on the command group and providing a lot of shooty goodness. Although it’s a shame not to paint their rather neat banner!

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Ok that’s great, so you have the models in the current list but you at least could some more, perfect.

I would say the Black Orcs are fine at 15, I agree with the Dwarf tactics there. Anvil units need to be a little larger, they are supposed to absorb some damage. 15 Black Orcs should be fine.

I like that there are Sneaky Gitz! I’d say keep 20 with command! But 20 Archers would open up another threat in the shooting phase, giving you more tactical flexibility. Same with the rocket launcher. If you’re talking about the same bazooka guy I have in mind, that is quite a rare model, so if you can get your hands on one for a reasonable price, why not use it. Should be absolutely fine in casual games. I definitely would not protest! :slight_smile:

The two Level 2 wizards should be enough.

As for general tactics: I have a feeling, we here on the discourse or the facebook group are probably the best place. Here is the 6th edition Chaos Dwarfs tactics page in 1d4chan. Let’s say it’s a little underwhelming :smiley: Mhmmmmm, maybe we could write something up here in the discourse and then fill that page with a little content? :thinking: Here is our own archive of tips for Chaos Dwarfs against all the other factions using the Ravening Hordes list. Maybe as a start? Our current Chaos Dwarf tactics category is shamefully empty.

Hello Kitaptamus,

I got back into 6th edition battles last years and here is a few ideas I adopted on a 2000 pts list
-Great taurus or Lamassu gives you fear a great mobility but they are large targets and expensive choices. My general choise is a bull centaur lord to join a 9 centaur strong unit.
-I use a couple of units made of 19/20 chaos dwarf warriors and 20 hobgloblins. I’m still uncertain about how many blunderbusses use but I guess 10 hobgloblins with bows are a good choice to weak enemies and support other units.
-hob goblin’s bolt throwers are better than death rocket launcher.
-love centaurs for high mobility

Hope it can help

Gabriele

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In 6th ed, I mostly used HG as cheap screens from shooting. Just wide units to block line of sight. They usually got wiped out, but no one cares about them so they don’t cause panic and they don’t take up Special slots.

Thanks for the input!

Glad to hear I have enough black orcs! Thanks for the help with the hobgoblins- I’ve just bought some bow and quiver bits to convert 20 of them. Should make for some fun variety :slight_smile: The bazooka is about £10 less than the Rocket Launcher model at the moment. Tempting for a conversion job, although for the price difference it may be more sensible to just get the proper rocket launcher model and be done.

Thanks for the links! Definitely sounds like a good plan. I always find that kind of material to be a fun read. It’s nice to see people’s opinions of each unit type and get a feel for how to use them.

Hi Gabriele! Thanks for the ideas. I’ll have to keep an eye out for hobgoblin bolt throwers. I think I prefer the aesthetics of the dwarfs manning the artillery but they could be a fun addition if I can find them at a manageable price.

Thanks Cornixt. That’s something I find quite appealing about the chaos dwarfs! I don’t know much about the meta for Warhammer Fantasy but it seems to me that the chaos dwarfs have a relatively unique feature in the staggered resistance to panic in their armies. Something worth leveraging.

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Aren’t the gauntlets of bazrak the cruel kinda a liability in bull centaur units? The potential wounds and such point heavy models is more than I’d gamble with

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Isn’t the shield wasted on the Lord? The magic armour you’ve given him can’t be improved so the shield is redundant as it does nothing.

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Absolutely, in both cases :sweat_smile: When I built the list I was just grabbing magic items to fill the points gap up to 2000 to see how many models I needed to buy. I’ve now gone over 2000 points in models so I can have a proper think about how to equip the characters.

Any recommendations on how many points of magic items to allocate and what some good choices would be?

I was also going to ask about the schools of magic. How are the chaos dwarfs in that arena? Are our schools in 6th decent and which of the four are generally preferred?

Thanks for all the help! :slight_smile:

I’d recommend swapping at least one stone out for a dispel scroll; you never know when you’ll need it to stop a crucial spell going through, especially if you go up against someone with a level 4 wizard.

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Sounds like a good plan! The thinking is that they will be rivals for my dwarfs (I’m going to come up with some lore about a dwarf hold on the eastern side of the World’s Edge Mountains coming into conflict with a family of their distant cousins in the Dark Lands). So I figured power stones to push through that dwarf magic resistance. But definitely- I gather a scroll caddy is usually a good idea :slight_smile:

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Welcome to the community!

Here’s my thoughts:

30-40 sneaky gits is good. If you have less then that you likely wont have enough to wrap around the enemy. Wrapping around requires you to give up ranks, and therefore combat resolution if you don’t have enough ranks to handle it. Keep in mind you’ll lose some to shooting as well.

As was mentioned elsewhere you are very close combat heavy. Between two units of CD warriors and three greenskin units you have very little to force the opponent to come to you, and you are too slow to come to him safely. If you shrink your sneaky gits for archer hobgoblins I would switch the remaineder from gits to standard hw/shield warriors. In doing so you could save 40 pts (20 archers, 20 warriors w/shield and command = 190), open up a special slot, and have a chaff unit to soak ranged fire and bait charges. Drop the command and you have 2 bolt throwers or are just 10 pts from a death rocket!

Your instincts are right about needing more in your anvil units. the standard enemy is 20 strong and even with your high leadership you’d rather not start that far outnumbered. Chaos dwarfs have a very limited magic item list so using less than their full allowance is a good way to get more points.

And one other note to point out on the “tiered” morale system - If your black orcs are too far from your other greenskins you wont get the benefit of their Quell Animosity ability, which is honestly a bigger factor than their slightly better stat line when you are fielding a large number of greenskins. If you are playing strict RH (ie the opponent is also using an RH list, not their 6th (or 7th or 8th) ed army book), then they don’t have that ability yet so you don’t need to worry about keeping them close by!

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Hey Flagellant!

Thank you! :slight_smile:

I did wonder about the numbers required for their wrap around capabilities. As you say, perhaps standard hobgoblins alongside archers would be wiser. The other unique feature Sneaky Gitz offer (above normal hobgoblins) is the second hand weapon- if I were to field 20 would this be worth the points cost (and lack of armour) alone? Balancing the tough, shielded units in my army with the extra attacks from second weapons (or stronger attacks from two-handers) is something I’ve wondered about. The CDs and Black Orcs bring the best of both worlds so I’ve got them armed to the teeth, haha.

I actually have a rules question regarding the above: Chaos Dwarf warriors and Black Orcs seem to have the option to wield Great Weapons (or two weapons for the orcs) and Shields. From what I understand, they always benefit from the shields when not in combat (against archers, for example) but then choose whether to two-hand or use their shield when they engage in melee. I assume that when they leave melee they return to their default shielded status and then, should they find another fight, choose again when they enter another combat? Did I get that right? If this is true I guess they can flexibly provide anvils or hammers for each other depending on which units get charged/charges first?

Good to know regarding the Anvils- I’ll ask my friend for another ten dwarfs soon. The issue at this stage is finding the points but I’m sure I’ll be able to trim somewhere (probably magic items, as you say, and orc boyz).

Ahh, that’s really interesting regarding Black Orcs. I was using their stats from RH so I didn’t even know they had that ability. I figured as I’m building CD from RH I should also draw the Black Orcs from that source- are they normally drawn from their own Armies Book? The only potential opponent at the moment is my own dwarfs (using either RH or the early 6th ed Armies Book- most likely the latter so I guess the CD need all the help they can get to bring them to parity). Hopefully in the future I’ll find more opponents or lure some friends into Oldhammer, haha.

Thanks so much for the input! You’ve drummed up many questions for me! I wonder about just making all of the hobgoblins archers (as, with bows, they do roughly the same job as more expensive models in other armies for a good points price whereas in melee they are kinda subpar, haha). Also, if I used a unit of standard hobgoblin warriors, should I armour them up or leave them as fodder? I’m guessing the shields are worth it as they add 2 armour in melee (making them a bit of a bargain) but light armour could be a waste of points?

I’ll try to get a rocket launcher soon to add to ranged firepower. Realistically, do the two wizards add an incentive for the enemy to close quickly (via their own flavour of ranged damage)? I guess the Taurus Demon also has its fire breath but that’s somewhat short ranged.

Many thanks again for all your help everyone! :slight_smile:

RH specifically says that the lists it contains are superseded by the army books released later, so in this case the Orc, Goblin and Black Orc profiles you use are the ones in the O&G book, although if your opponents are fine with it there shouldn’t be any issue using the RH profiles; you’d lose out on your Blorcs Quelling Annimosity, but you’d have a wider choice of weapon loadout (RH Blorcs can have spears or halberds but O&G ones can’t). What I would say though is don’t mix and match RH and O&G (eg don’t take Orcs using O&G to have them with choppas, but take Blorcs from RH so you can have them with halberds).

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I would stick with the additional HW on your Orc Boyz if you want a unit with extra attacks but don’t want to commit to a mob of gitz.

You are correct regarding shields. They benefit from them when not in combat but you have to choose at the beginning of each combat what weapon combination they will use for the remainder of that combat. No switching until one party has fled for been annihilated.

@Lord_of_Uzkulak has it right for how to use RH vs 6th ed proper lists. The general rule is if your opponent is using their RH list then you would use RH O&G, but if they are using their army book you would use the O&G army book.

I tend to use light armour in smaller games (~1k pts) for hobgoblins because at that size there are so few models on the table that I like them to carry their weight a little more. Bigger games I usually drop it because they are more expendable, though I may throw it on if I’ve got everything I want and have an extra 20 pts I don’t know what to do with.

The last thing to note is that the reason you’re hurting for points is very much your Great Taurus. Including one of them in a 2k point game means lots of sacrifices elsewhere. He’s super flavorful and if you love the concept definitely go for it, but by around 2500 pt games you are able to include one without feeling squeezed.

Thanks very much :slight_smile: I’ll use the Army Book versions then! I’m happy with g/weapons and shields for my Blorcs. Quell Animosity is a nifty trick!

This has raised a couple questions for me. First off: which version of animosity would my Hobgoblins use? The RH Chaos Dwarf list uses a simplified Animosity where they just do nothing on a 1. Would the hob-gobs get upgraded to the normal O&G version (even though, technically, the Army Book doesn’t contain hobgoblins at all)? The added chaos of the animosity chart does sound more fun and thematic! I suppose there is also doubt regarding the Orcs and Goblins themselves, as the animosity rules for them in a Chaos Dwarf army are under the Chaos Dwarf section rather than being redirected to the O&G section.

The other question is regarding “Big 'Uns”. In RH they are listed as a different unit type to Orc Boyz, so I assumed they weren’t in my toy box. But in the Orcs and Goblins Army Book they seem to be a 2 point upgrade on Orc Boyz, suggesting that like any other equipment, banner, musician or champion upgrade they are fair game? Is this so? Because WS 4 and STR 4 is quite attractive on a unit with two hand weapons, haha!

Thanks for the advice! I’ll stick with the Orc Boyz for double weapons, then. Glad to hear the shields work as expected!

Thank you both for clarifying the RH situation. Very helpful. So tragic that the CDs never got a 6th army book. They are so flavourful! Mostly I’d just love a 6th edition Lore of Hashut and some more magic items. I’m pretty happy with the unit variety.

Cool, I’m tempted to drop the light armour just to save some points. They are fodder after-all.

Hmm, yes I had figured the bull was a bit of an issue. Looking around for places to trim I keep coming back to the fact that my lord’s pet is eating a lot of points, haha! It’s just a gorgeous model and thematically fun. I need a dismount model anyway (tempted to hunt down that eye-wateringly pricey Chaos Dwarf Hero with the horny hat) so I guess I’ll have the option of fielding the general without the mount.

I just threw this up in another post, it will answer a lot of questions you have!

In short though if you use the O&G army book then you would use full O&G animosity rules as well as get the option to upgrade one unit to Big 'Uns with the normal restrictions (ie you need another unit of normal boyz before you can upgrade a second unit).

Yeah the one thing I really would have liked to see in a 6th ed book is more magic items. Their RH items are often very situational and you never have the depth of options that others get in full 6th. I’m thinking of coming up with some options on my own in the future for casual games, I think it could be a lot of fun.

As for a Lore of Hashut, take a look at the spells from 4th edition! You can at least get the flavor, if not their actual use haha

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Hey! Sorry for the delay. Busy week!

That’s fantastic! Thanks very much. Very useful. Good to get clarification on Blunderbusses not being able to shoot into combat too. I doubted it would work but there was something delightful about the thought of locking an enemy unit up in combat with some hobgoblins and then spraying the whole melee with blunderbuss fire, haha!

Ah, I’d missed the need for a second unit of orc boyz to get the big 'uns- I’ll probably stick to a normal unit of normal orcs then.

Definitely! More items would be great. Good idea regarding Hashut! I actually have the 5th edition magic box around here somewhere so I’ll take a look. I grew up with 5th edition so I have a lot of love for that era.

Something else I’ve noticed regarding the O&G book is the “Choppas” rule. If I read it correctly, you can use them with shields but you don’t get the extra +1 to saves in combat (so heavy armour and choppas with a shield would yield a 4+ save in melee?).

It raises a question for my Black Orcs- I was going to model them with a mix of great weapons and shields so I had the option to use them for anvil or hammer. But they have to use choppas, not hand weapons. So they’ll never get the extra +1 to saves in melee, rendering those shields a bit less valuable. On the flipside, they get +1 to str in the first round of combat from the choppas, raising the question as to whether it’s really worth 2 points per model for a great weapon (I gather they’ll fight last and only get +1 strength over choppas). Seems to me that choppa and shield/2 hand weapons may still be the best idea (unless the jump from str 5 to 6 is that important). I quite like the idea of them being at least a little tanky, so shields do have an appeal!

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Choppas only give the strength boost in the first round of combat and only if you charge, so if you’re receiving the charge, you might prefer to use the great weapons. Similarly if you expect it to be a protracted combat you might want great weapons over choppas as you get the Strength boost every turn with great weapons rather than just the first.

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