My very first game with Chaos Dwarfs was against Dark Elves. Yesterday I played against a good friend of mine who brought a Witch Elves Deathstar to the party. No easy matchup for Chaos Dwarfs as poison galore hurts so many of our otherwise durable troops and the Dark Elf chaff provide board control which makes it hard for us to do just about anything. The game was played using ETC rules.
The lists were as follows:
Metal Sorcerer-Prophet: Talisman of Preservation, Enchanted Shield, Earthing Rod = 375
Metal Daemonsmith Sorcerer: Chalice of Blood and Darkness = 145
Infernal Castellan, BSB, Mask of the Furnace, Shield, Luckstone = 202
Khan, Wolf, Dragonhelm, Light Armour, Shield = 66
Khan, Wolf, Dragonbane Gem, Light Armour, Shield = 61
27 Infernal Guard, Full Command, Great Weapons = 437
11 Infernal Guard, Fireglaives, Musician = 197
29 Hobgoblins, Bows, Musician = 149
Iron Daemon, Hellbound = 310
Deathshrieker Rocket Launcher = 100
Magma Cannon = 145
Hellcannon = 210
Army total: 2397
Dreadlord - Enchanted Shield, Giant Blade, Crown of Command, Heavy Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak - 254pts
Supreme Sorceress - Level 4 Life, Dark Pegasus, Dispel Scroll, Cloak of Twilight - 345pts
Master - BSB, Heavy Armour, Shield, Sea Dragon Cloak, Ring of Hotek - 157pts
Death Hag - Cauldron of Blood, Witchbrew, Sword of Anti Heroes - 335pts
34x Witch Elves - Full Command, Razor Standard - 449pts
5xDark Riders - 80pts
5xDark Riders - 80pts
4xReaper Bolt Thrower - 280pts
5xShades - 80pts
5xShades - Great Weapons - 90pts
5xWarlocks - 125pts
5xWarlocks - 125pts
// Pre-battle thoughts and deployment //
I knew I would have to engage the Witch Elf star to get significant points here. Metal is terrible against this army and the evasive nature of the list means it
s hard for WMs to score points. Thus, I wanted to blast away at the Witchelves with artillery while targeting the Cauldron with the Hellcannon. If I got lucky, I would follow up with Deathshrieker Demolition Rockets. <br><br>Deployment saw me place the Hellcannon in a corner. Since its a monster and therefore cannot pivot and shoot, it
s kind of hard to place it anywhere else and still have decent LoS. I placed the Deathshrieker + Magma next to it, with the big IG unit with all characters in front. The Fireglaives + Iron Daemon went in front of the Hellcannon to secure the flank (which my opponent deployed fairly weak), hoping to be able to dominate it and later on wheel around towards the center, hopefully in time to help out against the Witch Elves. <br><br><a href="http://s96.photobucket.com/user/Olannon/media/0-deploy_zps84cfe249.jpg.html"><img src="http://i96.photobucket.com/albums/l200/Olannon/0-deploy_zps84cfe249.jpg"></a><br><br>My General rolls up 2+ to wound, but 1 wounds myself for his weapon. Magic: I rolled Glittering Robe for the L1 and kept it. L4 rolled up Seering Doom, Blades, Transmutation of Lead and Final Transmutation. He got Awakening, Throne, Shield, Dwellers. Going for first turn, his +1 ensured him the initiative (this DE army has a very low drop count for a non-wm army).<br><br><strong>// DE T1 //</strong><br><br>Witchelves and East move up, West are awaiting my moves before doing anything. Magic is easily contained at this range with Chalice. Shooting sees his Shades target the closest Khan (my mistake for not putting him in a unit), but he only manages 1W. Some Hobgoblins and a couple of Fireglaives die to RBTs. <br><br><a href="http://s96.photobucket.com/user/Olannon/media/1-1_zpsb0eba19f.jpg.html"><img src="http://i96.photobucket.com/albums/l200/Olannon/1-1_zpsb0eba19f.jpg"></a><br><br><strong>// CD T1 //</strong><br><br>Khans move up to the center where they receive cover from enemy shooting. Bunker reforms slightly to close the gap to the Magma Cannon and provide hard cover for my artillery. The Hobgoblins roll a 6
for their animosity which is perfect. Magic sees me roll snake eyes and I cannot do anything. I was hoping for Blades of Aiban on the Hobgoblins, which wouldve essentially made them BS5 (!). Shooting however is brutal as the Magma Cannon and Hellcannon both land perfect hits on the Witchelves, killing a dozen models and leaving the Cauldron on 1W! 2 Warlocks are downed by the Iron Daemon as well, who has the Fireglaives close by in case the Warlocks decide to attempt a charge (flanking by 9 Fireglaives should see me win combat easily).
// DE T2//
Warlocks decide to charge the closest Khan, who flees off the board. He redirects into the second, which holds. I figured this would leave him in a pretty bad spot so if he made the charge (17", so roughly 60% to make it) it wouldn
t matter too much. Magic sees him get off Throne of Vines, Chalice contains the rest. Western Dark Riders move up outside of ID charge and the Eastern chaff shoots my Hobgoblins, downing quite a few. RBTs take out another couple of Fireglaives. In combat the Warlocks fail (!) to kill the Khan and to make matters worse he passes his break test. This doesnt leave me with a whole lot of options as he
s essentially blocking me. <br><br><a href="http://s96.photobucket.com/user/Olannon/media/2-1_zpsa7e77048.jpg.html"><img src="http://i96.photobucket.com/albums/l200/Olannon/2-1_zpsa7e77048.jpg"></a><br><br><strong>// CD T2 //</strong><br><br>My turn 2 has only just begun and already I have so many things to consider. First off the Fireglaives charge the Dark Riders, who flee, to provide my ID with some movement. I then move the ID to have a chance at getting a dominant position in the center. The Hobgoblins reform to 6-wide as theyre only 18 remaining and move to block off the Witchelves (also forcing an overrun in the case of a charge as they
re frenzied<br><br>Magic this time is huge, with 12v6 being rolled after I box cars my channels. The end result however is Robes on the Khan (hoping to keep him alive for one more combat round) and Blades of Aiban on the Hobgoblins. A fairly poor result as I didnt even draw his scroll, but it is mainly because Metal is a very poor fit against this army.
Shooting sees me down the Witchelves to less than a single rank and kill off the Hag.
// DE T3 //
Warlocks charge Iron Daemon, Shades charge bunker in the flank in hopes of keeping it fairly still. Witchelves charge Hobgoblins (I made a mistake here as I forgot to stand and shoot with the Throwing Knives which would
ve probably killed off most, if not all, of the remaining Witchelves) who hold. We now decide to end the game after T4 because its getting too late. This of course influences the rest of the game heavily.
Magic: I forgot I had to dispel Throne of Vines in my last turn. He rolls huge for Dwellers on the Magma cannon and I let it go, the WM insta-dies. I then use Chalice to remove his remaining PD and dispel throne. His 2 successful casts in the last 2 turns has taken the Cauldron back to 3W.
Shooting kills another couple of Fireglaives. They are now dangerously low. Witchelves kill off Hobgoblins and overrun so that they are within range of Shades. I Make Way! with the General + BSB to fight the GW Shades, who fail to impress me. I kill 3 in return but they hold due to BSB. Mission accomplished. Warlocks wound the Iron Daemon 3 times.
// CD T3 //
Fireglaives charge Warlocks. Despite only getting one corner-to-corner I
m hoping a combat reform will allow me to save the Iron Daemon from a slow poison-death. Hellcannon tries to charge Warlocks in front of my bunker but I roll abysmally low and it wheels 2" in a failed charge instead. Magic: I didnt get anything crucial off but I do believe his Scroll came out. The Demolition rocket hits the Cauldron but its ward save keeps it alive.
Combat: Fireglaive does nothing, he wounds the ID once. I win, but he passes the break test, unfortunately. General + BSB finish off Shades with no damage taken in return and I combat reform 10-wide, characters spread out.
// DE T4 //
Shades + Warlocks charge the bunker. Witchelves reform and move to center. Dark Riders flank Fireglaives and Iron Daemon. Sorceress charges Deathshrieker. Magic is contained completely and shooters do nothing. Combat: Shades + Warlocks take some wounds off of me, but no characters die and in return he loses a lot of models. Both units break from combat and I
m free! The Fireglaives + Iron Daemon fare very badly and in total I lose by 7. Somehow the Fireglaives find the courage to hold as I make the 2nd attempt with a 2
. <br><br><a href="http://s96.photobucket.com/user/Olannon/media/4-1_zpsadf04e05.jpg.html"><img src="http://i96.photobucket.com/albums/l200/Olannon/4-1_zpsadf04e05.jpg"></a><br><br><strong>// CD T4 //</strong><br><br>I charge the bunker into the remaining Witch Elves. The Hellcannon charges his Dark Riders engaged with the Fireglaives. Magic sees him dispel Robe, however I get Blades of Aiban through! Shooting is non-existant as everything is tied up. In the combat against his Witchelves he kills 10 models before I get to strike. In return however I kill the remaining Witchelves AND the 3W Cauldron of Blood, many thanks to Blades of Aiban! The Hellcannon kills off the Dark Riders and the Fireglaives survive, however the Warlocks finish off the Iron Daemon with their poisoned madness. The Sorceress and Deathshrieker crew still fail to impress one another. He passes his General + BSB break test and the Warlock break test and thats the game!
Counting up victory points, it
s roughly 1000 vs 800, a <strong>11-9 victory to the Chaos Dwarfs!</strong><br><br><strong>// Evaluation //</strong><br><br>This game taught me a lot about Chaos Dwarfs, most notably the army composition Im playing around with here. First of all, having to place the Hellcannon in a corner is pretty terrible: with its M3 it
s very hard to bring its strength to bear in combat when positioned in this way. Secondly, it would have been a really strong anchor element on my refused side. Ill have to see if there
s anyway to play around this, perhaps there are some matchups where I can deploy differently. <br><br>The placement of the bunker is crucial, as is the character positions. In this game, I always had the re-rolls I needed where I needed them (both wizards covering 2 war machines) which helped out greatly for their ability to tear apart his Witchelves so fast. I have to practice this a lot and I think Ill simply do some “dry deployments” with dummy movement trays to check out various positions.
The Hobgoblins worked extremely well. I was lucky to get a
6 for two crucial turns in a row and Blades of Aiban most certainly makes them a LOT better. However I believe they can function very well regardless with just the bows as a meat shield that also helps me deal with fast cav etc. Their sheer size, coupled with LD10 re-rollable, makes them a highly useful unit.
The Iron Daemon is super scary and in-directly provides a lot of board control. It is extremely weak against cavalry and especially poison fast cav (probably ranged poison, too) such as Warlocks. To this end I found that a medium sized unit of Fireglaives was able to protect it rather well. I like this combo as a flank-anchor element and of course, in a lot of matchups it won
t have such hard counters (nor will the opponents shooting be so well suited to thin out the Fireglaives as the RBTs were here.
t really work here, nor will it against WE shooty-avoidance, many HE lists and Lizardman MSU either. It gives a lot of value against Empire, which I consider this lists worst matchup (if you lose the shooting duel early on it
s game over as M3 cannot push) but Im not sure it
s that much stronger than Hashut, which is what Ill be trying next (and metal on the L1).
t take away too much from the result of this game: the end play was a lot more risky since both sides had good chances of getting lots of points quickly. If the game had gone on for a full 6 turns it couldve been completely different, especially with the L4 Life flying around. Regardless it was a very tactical, challenging and interesting game to play and I hope you`ve enjoyed the read