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Request - Dwarven Tactica


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#1 Miles The Mighty

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Posted 07 March 2016 - 07:40 PM

I'm probably not the one to write it, as I've been getting my teeth kicked in so far in KoW, but we should compile a Dwarven Tactica and pin it to the top of this subforum.

 

I'd like to see:

  • Unit Rankings based on role (best Anvil, best Hammer, etc)
  • List archetypes (gunlines vs melee?)
  • Deployment diagrams for those archetypes
  • General Tactical advice.

What do you say?



#2 jtrowell

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Posted 08 March 2016 - 08:44 AM

It's hard to qualify an unit as being the best at any role in KoW, because often a slightly "worse" but cheaper unit will still be able to do the job while freeing you enough points for something else.

 

It all depends on your general battle plan and how your units support each others.

 

You could say that a big def6+ unit is the best anvil, but if you are simply trying to hold a charge from a lone knight troop (or even a regiment), then maybe a simple regiment of spearmen would have been enough.

 

It is said that KoW is won during the movement phase, but this is also a matter of using the appropriate tool as often as possible while making your opponent waste ressources.

 

If you lost a war engine to a dragon hero, then it's bad, but you still had your opponent use a 300+ point unit to kill one worth less than 100, where a simple cheap mounted hero or light unit would have done the same job.

Hopefully this means that you had the advantage in points in other sections of the battle field, letting you get the advantage in maybe more importants local battles.

 

Of course, sometimes you really need a job done, and having a subobtimal unit do it it still better that not doing it at all, but it helps to be prepared with the right tools as often as possible.

 

So i you want to take the most expensive option for any one role, you have to make sure that you really exploit his potential most of the time compared to the cheaper alternatives.

 

Following this idea and to go back to your original topic, descriptions of each unit should probably include suggestions of how to best use them, usually by telling how they can support or be supported by other units.

 

I find that it is often a good idea to  separate your army in several "detachments", small groups of one or more units, often made to be deployed around some inspiring hero

 

Of course you can have wildcards units that will be added where they will bring needed support, but even there it helps greatly to think of at least one or two default ways to include them.

 

 

 

 

 

 



#3 Montegue

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Posted 12 March 2016 - 01:44 PM

Movement is the most important phase. Given static charge ranges, and our slightly lower move rate (generally) you need to arrange for accepting charges you can survive and turn to your advantage. You also need to use Brock riders to pressure the enemy into bad commitments, and can use surging elemental a and greater elemental for surprise charges.

Berserkers are excellent screening troops. They have a lot of attacks so they're a real threat (especially with a Stone Priest nearby) and they're relatively cheap for what they can out out.

#4 jtrowell

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Posted 14 March 2016 - 09:03 AM

Berserkers are a special case in that they have a mych larger nerve than usual for they unit size, as well as being fearless, meaning that event with their low def+ they can still soak some decent amount of damage.

 

I prefer to use this kind of unit as a reserve behind other units, but it's true that you can also put them in front of high strength units like huge monsters  where the excessive CS or TC will be wasted on their low defence.

 

It's one of the very nice things in KoW : both can work if used correctly, you don't have one and only one way to do things. Sure, often there is one way that is easier to implement in any army, but even then the other tactcs can work as long as your plan is made with them in mind.



#5 Southern Dwarf

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Posted 16 March 2016 - 11:50 PM

Movement is the most important phase. Given static charge ranges, and our slightly lower move rate (generally) you need to arrange for accepting charges you can survive and turn to your advantage. You also need to use Brock riders to pressure the enemy into bad commitments, and can use surging elemental a and greater elemental for surprise charges.

Berserkers are excellent screening troops. They have a lot of attacks so they're a real threat (especially with a Stone Priest nearby) and they're relatively cheap for what they can out out.

 

I agree with Montegue; our slower movement means we are likely to be charged first, so a key part of our battleplan must be to survive the enemy's initial charge, and retaliate. In most cases we have better De values that allow us to do this.

 

A key element for surviving a charge is to use terrain to your advantage; a hindered charge is a lot less dangerous, that -1 to hit and loss of any Thunderous Charge makes a huge difference.  If the enemy has a lot of Pathfinder units, start putting some obstacles on the table (Pathfinder doesn't work on these). You should have 8-10 terrain pieces on the table.

 

Also place units in a way that you cannot be multi-charged. A sacrificial unit standing in front, even if off to one side, will stop two or more units aligning to the main units behind. Always think about how the enemy can combine charges onto one of your units; this is a key advantage of charging first, and we have to nullify that.

 

Finally, keep reserve units for your counterattacks, preferably out to a flank if possible (true for all armies of course).  I like Battle Drillers because they add quite a few attacks and their Brutal rule also helps the Nerve roll.  We also have to have a second line to help deal with flyers and enemy fast movers coming round the flank. I use Shieldbreaker Troops, Battle Drillers and a Beserker Lord on Brock for this, but Brock Riders, Beserkers and the like can also be useful.



#6 Miles The Mighty

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 03:19 PM

Thanks for all the advice everyone!  As I'm the OP, I'm trying to figure out the best way to compile what we've got so far.

I'm also realizing that since the bulk of my dwarf tactica comes from playing WFB 8th ed using the older army book (WFB kind of died at my LGS around the time the most recent WFB army book came out) That book, if you'll recall was 100% about having as many cannons, organ guns, and thunderer 10-man units as possible and just never ever moving.

My other army is Bretonnians (now brotherhood), which is a highly mobile and aggressive army, so I think I've been wrongly mixing in their tactica while trying to move my dwarfs around.



#7 Skull Krusher

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Posted 18 March 2016 - 05:39 PM

I have found that in playing KoW you need chaff... and what I mean is throw away units.   Dwarves do not have many throw away chaff units...  Smallest unit is 90 pts for ten figures....  You also need to place the chaff in front of your hard hitting hand-to-hand units...  Once the chaff goes away it leaves your hard hitting unit within charge range of the enemy.  PROTECT YOUR FLANKS!!! can not say that enough. 

 

Shooting is not the King of the battlefield, the axe, hammer, and pike are....  just my thoughts... I run Dwarves, Orcs, Goblins, and WoC in KoW and every army its plus and minus and all need to use chaff to some degree in order for you Hard Hitting units to win the game.  It is all about maneuver and fighting and not shooting....  PROTECT FLANKS and have an INSPIRING leader close by....



#8 Miles The Mighty

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Posted 21 March 2016 - 06:29 PM

Pulled some info off the mantic forums:

 

 

 

Pros:
Good defense, high nerve, Headstrong, lots of shooting options

Cons:
Most units are Speed 4, only one Cav unit, no flyers, limited magic, most shooters are static

My favorite way to approach playing Dwarfs is to think of them as a glacier. Slow, methodical, grinding.

- Your Ironclad soak up lots of attacks and keep on plodding forward. You won't get there very fast, but when you do, you won't be terribly worse for wear.
- Your Ironwatch and warmachines will wear down opponents as they bounce off your infantry so that when you do engage, your axes and hammers will be able to finish the work your guns began.
- Your Brock Riders and Berserkers are the inevitable avalanche screaming down in front of your relentless advance, sweeping away the trash and clearing your path.
- Your Elementals and Ironguard form the rocky fists of your attack, pounding mercilessly while your opponents attacks futilely bounce off your armor.

I build my lists in one of three ways: Gunlines, Balanced, Infantry-heavy.

Gunlines have multiple hordes of Ironwatch, with Organ Guns sprinkled liberally about and a cannon or bombard for fun. Ironclad troops act as roadblocks while Brock Rider troops protect your flanks. Flame Belchers take care of pesky chaff and flyers.

Infantry-heavy lists have multiple Ironclad hordes or regiments, some Ranger units for shooting and flexibility, Earth Elementals and Ironguard as your anvils while Berserkers serve as hammers to crush your foes.

Balanced lists mostly revolve around a solid core of EEs and Ironguard/Ironclad, some Ironwatch to anchor a flank, Berserkers and Brock Riders to add punch while your war machines rain death down and force your opponents to engage.

 

 

 

 

Shieldbreakers are solid in that role [as hammers], but unless you throw a horde out there, you're lacking a bit in attacks. I find that a regiment of the psycho nutjobs with Brew of Strength or Blessing of the Gods are quite effective. My philosophy is that your ability to damage is irrelevant if you can't hit something. So I'd personally rather have lower CS with a higher volume of attacks and pick my fights. 

The trick is threat management. If the opponent knows what Berserkers can do, they won't risk exposing a flank to 50 attacks (avg 12 wounds vs De 4+). Shieldbreakers would only give you 7-8 wounds in the same scenario; not as much of a threat. The SBs have a pip more armor, but the Berserkers' -/22 nerve easily makes up for that. On the other hand, Berserkers are 50 points more for a regiment, so you pay for that threat.

In my tournament list, I carry a horde of Shieldbreakers (with Blessing) and a regiment of Berserkers (with Brew of Strength) to run alongside my Earth Elemental horde and Ironguard regiment. The latter form a solid core anvil while the other two work to do the damage. This combo is really flexible because I have the tools to deal with virtually any threat with the core of my army. Then all the other stuff (guns, chaff, etc.) just works to funnel the opponent into the killing field.

 

 

 

So far the most effective set up I've been able to use has been splitting my army into two halves, one half the stationary gunline, the second half the footslogging infantry. Sorry no experience with brockriders yet.

The gunline is what it sounds like. Troops or regiments of ironwatch with some cannon support. With the cannons I like to either put them between the ironwatch being slight behind the front so they can't be charge right away, or packed together in a corner. I personally prefer troops to maximize attacks over nerve (or use hordes if you want to dump more points in this half of your list). The whole point of this side of the army is to make open areas scary. They won't likely outshoot elves without lucky cannon shots, but the number of units gives you lots of drops and it takes a long time for your enemy to churn through.

The infantry wing swings on a hinge anchored on the edge of the gunline. This groups moves in a formation intended to take advantage of the counter-attack after being charged. I could see taking flamebelchers with this group do discourage flyers.

I'm sure variations on that strategy could work! I find I miss fast units for breaking up/distracting elf archer hordes.

 



#9 Atzcapotzalco

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Posted 23 March 2016 - 05:26 PM

I wrote this brief summary of KoW v2 dwarves a while back, including how they differ from warhammer dwarves. 

 

http://www.bugmansbr...n-kings-of-war/



#10 Montegue

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Posted 23 March 2016 - 07:53 PM

I think the brock riders serve as area control. No one wants to mess with them unless they can get the drop on them.

#11 Miles The Mighty

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Posted 28 March 2016 - 07:23 PM

Had a great game against Empire of Dust over the weekend.  Effectively used 75 point Ironclad troops to screen my Horde of rifles, organ gun, and berserkers.  They actually lasted quite a bit longer than I expected them to!  The flanks were held by brock riders on one side and a regiment of Bulwarkers and a Steel Behemoth on the other.

His bone giant couldn't break the dwarven line before getting shot to pieces and his flanks fell, leaving me to mop up the middle.



#12 Miles The Mighty

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Posted 28 March 2016 - 09:07 PM

@Atzcapotazalco, that link is great!  Can we get a mod to sticky that?  I think that'd be super helpful to people looking to get into Kings of War.






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