Greetings, all! I posted a much shorter and less developed version of this on Reddit, where a helpful commenter pointed me to this website as a good place for feedback. What a cool community here!
Warcry is my system of choice because the low model count allows me to experiment with projects across several different factions. I don’t win many games, but I do have a 10-model Sneaky Skrap that uses all the cheating Goblin Secret Weapon players from Blood Bowl, for instance – I’m that guy. I have been into the hobby for about a year now and just recently lucked into a handful of Chaos Dwarfs. They lead me to the lore in Tamurkhan: The Throne of Chaos, which ultimately lead me to this board.
In the four years since Warcry released, Games Workshop has teased us with about two new Chaos Dwarf models and (unsurprisingly) has yet to produce full rules for Dawi-Zharr warbands. I know this idea has been floated before but I have finally gotten around to breaking it down on my own. I’ve attempted to incorporate as many of the units available to the Chaos Dwarfs / Legion of Azgorh in the AoS rules and lore as possible. I’ve also tried to ensure that all of the units behave the way you expect them to. However, I’m still a neophyte in the ways of the dark dwarves, so any input is appreciated!
Dawi-Zharr Press Gangs
Nobody has cracked the code to determining the point cost of a single Warcry fighter, so I knew I’d be looking at a total conversion of a faction that already exists. I considered every Grand Alliance. Order doesn’t have access to the right kind of monsters, Death’s resurrection motif doesn’t fit the Chaos Dwarfs, and the Destruction factions either don’t have the right mix of units (Ironjawz) or the right stats (Gitz.) It makes sense to stay in Chaos, which includes enough Monsters and Thralls that we should be able to find a proxy for most things Azgorh.
The hardest part of deciding which Chaos faction to brand as Dwarfs is finding a good Fireglaive analogue. The only 25mm-base models with a ranged attack in the whole Chaos roster are the Blue Horror, whose ability to split make no sense for dwarves, and the Ungor Raider, whose stats are a poor match (too fast, too frail.) We’ll need to be creative.
It would mean putting the dwarves on larger bases and resizing a few of the other units, but after an exhaustive look through the Compendium, I think the best fit for our purpose is the Khorne Bloodbound.
Here are some notes on individual fighters – I haven’t renamed many of the abilities yet. (Calling the reaction Khorne’s Due “Hashut’s Favor” and faction ability Blood for the Blood God “Unbridled Contempt” is about as much progress as I’ve made on that front.) I’ve pointed out which models I’m using in case that helps anyone down the line.
Aspiring Deathbringer, Exalted Deathbringer with Impaling Spear / Ruinous Axe, Skullgrinder >>> Chaos Dwarf Lords
The nice thing about these guys is that you can use any miniature that looks appropriately lordly.
Slaughterpriest, Slaughterpriest with Hackblade and Wrath-Hammer >>> Daemonsmiths
The Bloodboil ability becomes “Blood of Hashut”, their liquid fire. Bloodbind is something like “Taunt”. Could use a better name for that one.
Bloodsecrator >>> Infernal Guard Standard Bearer
Mighty Lord of Khorne >>> Sorceror-Prophet / Astragoth
The base gives him a nice, wide berth. The Gorehound attack ability becomes “Naptha Bomb”. The old metal Astragoth model runs about $200 on eBay, so I dug deep into my bits box for this one…
He’s still very much a rough draft.
Lord of Khorne on Juggernaut >>> Shar’tor the Executioner
Bloodstoker >>> Infernal Guard Castellan
His pistol is the range 3 weapon. The Castellan’s ability and battlefield role are a perfect match for the Bloodstoker.
Skullhunter >>> Bull Centaur Taur’ruk
Bull Centaur Render leader.
Skullseeker >>> Infernal Guard Ironsworn Deathmask
Alternate paint scheme for Ironsworn model to complement Ironsworn fighters, e.g., if the fighters are primarily silver with red highlights, the Deathmask would be primarily red with silver highlights.
Wrathmaster >>> Infernal Guard Fireglaives Deathmask
Alternate paint scheme for Fireglaive model to complement Fireglaive fighters.
Chaos Champion >> Chaos Dwarf Warrior Leader
Lots of flexibility for model choice.
Bloodreaver Chieftain >>> Hobgrot Slittaz Boss
Bloodreaver with Reaver Blades / Meatripper Axe >>> Hobgrot Slittaz
I left the swords as is and replaced the grenades with hand weapons from the Ironsworn set.
Blood Warrior with Goreaxe and Gorefist / Pair of Goreaxes / Goreglaive >>> Chaos Dwarf Warriors
You can use just about anything between a naked dwarf and an Infernal Guard here. I converted some daemon engine crewmembers with various Chaos-y weapons, including a couple of the Castellan’s hand-knives in the mix to proxy for Gorefirsts.
Skullreaper >>> Infernal Guard Ironsworn
Ability becomes “Ensorcelled Hand Weapons.” I’m already using the Ironsworn hand weapons for my Hobgrot Slitttaz, so these Infernal Guard needed something much scarier. I went with Chainaxes.
Wrathmonger >>> Infernal Guard Fireglaives
As Khorne lacks ranged infantry, this was the best I could do. My thinking is that the short range, high number of attacks, and quad ability reflect using both parts of the weapon in close quarters, like how some fighting game characters use guns. Not perfect, but workable.
Khorgorath >>> K’Dai Fireborn
Blood daemon, meet fire daemon. Possibly the biggest base size change. Does anyone know how to make a base that looks like it’s entirely consumed by flames?
Mighty Skullcrusher with Ensorcelled Axe / Bloodglaive >>> Bull Centaur Renders
Flesh Hound >>> Hobgoblin Wolf Raiders (Rippa’s Snarlfangs or the new Gitz cavalry)
Chimera >>> Drazhoath the Ashen
The only option because it is the only flying monster in the Warcry Chaos roster. Good thing it works!
Slaughterbrute >>> Shar’Tor the Executioner
Straightforward. His bonus damage ability is from his mask.
Ghorgon >>> Skullcracker War Engine
I like the way the abilities make it seem like it can kind of zoom around and ram things.
Mutalith Vortex Beast >>> K’Dai Destroyer
Planning to use a Khorne Blood Slaughterer Impaler for this.
Cygor >>> Deathshrieker Rocket Launcher, Iron Daemon War Engine, Magma Cannon, Dreadquake Mortar…?
The only monster other than the Chimera with a ranged attack. The Rip and Tear Masonry thing works if you look at it as loading and then firing the weapon. Not perfect, though, because why would that require being near an obstacle? Maybe they’re like the Hellcannon and you have to brace the weapons before you fire them to counteract their recoil. I don’t know.
Hell Pit Abomination >>> ???
And last but not least, I think it would be cool to use the Blood Bowl Minotaur and Mutated Minotaur to proxy some Chaos Spawn. I’ve taken this to my limit in terms of the lore, but there’s one more monster and three or four more thralls that could be used to represent other models in the Chaos Dwarfs’ range if you feel like I’ve missed something critical. I don’t have any idea what to use for the Hell Pit Abomination; I just know I want to figure that one out.
Eventually, I’d like to do cards and official-looking Background and Abilities tables like the books have for existing factions. What do you think so far?