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Grudgebearers

So , all things have a beginning , this Blogpost originates from a throw away comment on a Facebook post almost 12 months ago.


This exchange is a result of Robs almost fanatic belief in his painting abilities , as can be seen his 6000 point project didn't get completed in that first fortnight , but more about that later.....

The upshot of this Dwarf Dick waving contest was a firmish commitment to play a game whereby the Southern Pretenders , fielded by one time Clubmate and now Cockney defector , Rob, against the Mighty Free Dwarfs of Bowland fielded by me, Bob. With various roadblocks established by Covid , including lockdowns and the refusal of our club venue to take us back afterwards , the hunt for a new home and the establishing of a resurgent membership, it was nearly a Year before the challenge could be taken up.

At last a date was agreed and the preparations were set, however the game ended up being a 3000 point battle ( and Rob was still painting on the morning of the Game :) ) with the following forces facing off against each other :-

Imperial Dwarf "Wingy Kingy Squishers 3K"

Regiment and two Troops of Ironclads with Throwing Mastiffs

IronGuard Regiment with Healing Brew and Throwing Mastiffs

Three Hordes of Shieldbreakers with Staying Stone, Chalice of Wrath and Dwarven Ale , all with Throwing Mastiffs

Troop of Sharpshooters

Two Regiments of Mastiff Hunting Pack with Throwing Mastiffs

Ironbelcher Cannon

Flame Belcher

Ironbelcher OrganGun

Two Steel Behemoths , one with the Gollochs Fury upgrade

Dwarf Lord with Wings of Honeymaze

Dwarf Lord on Large Beast with Mace of Crushing

Dwarf Army Standard Bearer with Lute of Insatiable Darkness

Garrek Heavyhand

Faber Ironheart ( This Model was painted the morning of the Battle)

3000 Points Total 20 Units with Unit Strength 27


These would be facing off against a more combined Arms army than I usually take , but this being an "exhibition" grudge game I opted not to go for wall to wall Brock riders.


A Horde of Free Dwarf Ironwatch Rifles

A Regiment and a troop of Free Dwarf Rangers , the Regiment being upgraded to Herneas' hand picked Rangers

Two Regiments and one troop of Free Dwarf Brock Riders , both regiments upgraded to Pathfinder and having the Brew of Strength and Blessing of the Gods.

Two Hordes of Earth Elementals.

Three Regiments of Mastiff Hunting Pack with Throwing Mastiffs

One Greater Earth Elemental with Craggoth Upgrade

One Free Dwarf Stone Priest with Conjurer's Staff and Martyr's Prayer

One Free Dwarf Packmaster with Mastiff Munchberries

One Berserker Lord with Wings of Honeymaze ( The one and only Wingy Kingy)

Sveri Egilax

Herneas the Hunter

Banick Kholearm

3000 Points Total Units 18 Unit strength 26

The Day dawned of the Battle and eagerly the car was loaded with Dwarfs and scenery and people and off we trundled to the Club. On arrival the table was set up and the new scenery revealed in all its glory for the first time.


Before deploying for the game we decided to play the Invade scenario as it didn't involve counters or much thought and we could concentrate on playing and taking pictures. We also agreed the heights and type of the scenery beforehand to avoid confusion, the buildings were Height 6 impassable , Hills all height 3 ( even the big one) , height 2 obstacles ( walls), Height 6 Forests, Height 1 difficult for the ruined statues and height 2 impassable for the giant stone head. All the trees in the forests are removable and the tiny trees on the other terrain features were purely cosmetic and removable.

The Free Dwarfs Won the dice off for sides and so deployed the first unit , we then alternated until the table looked like this



Basically the Imperial dwarfs had a right flank consisting of Shieldbreakers, Mastiffs, Ironguard, Faber Ironheart and Garrek Heavyhand. A Left flank consisting of two hordes of Shieldbreakers, two troops of Ironclads , battle standard bearer and Lord on Large beast and a centre of Two Steel Behemoths , all the war engines , sharpshooters, a regiment of Ironclads and the Pretender winged Lord.

The Free Dwarfs had a left flank consisting of Craggoth, a troop of Brocks, a Regiment of Mastiffs and Wingy Kingy, A Right flank made up of the two Brock regiments and Sveri Egilax and the centre of Rangers Elementals and Rifles backed up by Herneas, Banick and the Stonepriest.

At the start ( sort of) the Rangers , Craggoth, Herneas and Banick all Scouted forwards.

Then Turn one Happened.

Turn One

The Imperial Dwarfs shot forwards pushing all their infantry units up while the Steel behemoths galloped to the hill in front of them. Their winged lord landed in front of Gollochs fury and dared Wingy Kingy to take up the challenge. Even the War engines edged forwards to close the range while the mass of Dwarfs on their left flank slogged up the hill to take positions on the summit.

The Imperial Dwarfs fired every ranged weapon they could bring to bear , resulting in ... a wavered Ranger Troop and some minor wounds on other units but leaving the Free Dwarfs mainly intact.

The Free Dwarfs then proceeded to advance cautiously forwards (except for the wavered Rangers and Craggoth , who cheekily backed up a little way), Wingy Kingy chose to ignore the obvious trap and instead flew over the wood to take up a more central position behind the Earth Elementals from which to influence the battle a bit more, the Brock Cavalry on the right moving forwards to clear the impassable building and allow a bit more manoeuvre room. the Free Dwarf shooting then commenced with a few Fireballs from Craggoth and Banick coupled with mastiffs from two of the Mastiff Regiments being flung. Herneas and his Rangers shot at Faber Ironheart to no avail and the Ironwatch rifles pinged the Ironclad for no effect.


Turn Two

Golloch's underlings advanced again , on their right flank the Mastiffs charged the Brock rider troop on the hill while the Shieldbreakers crashed into Craggoth. Faber Ironheart savaged the already wounded Mastiff Regiment and then turned to help out the mastiffs on the hill whilst the Pseudo Wingy Kingy grew a pair and charged the Original , hoping to see him off in Single combat ! However , being but a pale shadow of the Wingy Kingy he only managed to inflict a minor injury upon his stalwart Foe. The two behemoths elected to stay on the Hill in the centre of the table and shoot, their fire , along with the central Organ gun and Cannon taking out the Ranger Troop and a Mastiff Regiment and damaging some Earth Elementals. The Sharpshooters took some potshots at the Ironwatch rifles but them being in cover reduced their shooting to a mere annoyance. The Imperial Lackeys on the hill to the left of their army decided to stand firm and taunt their opponents whilst sending a paltry Mastiff Regiment to park an inch away from a Brock Rider Regiment.



Once the minions of the Usurper had finished the Mighty Free Dwarfs leaped into the fray ! On their left , Craggoth and the Brock riders returned the attacks of their opponents , the Brock troop fighting with gusto but Craggoth - not so much. The Brocks saw off the Mastiffs to their front but Craggoth remained locked in combat with a Horde of angry Dwarfs. Herneas' Rangers moved forwards to tempt the Steel Behemoths into a charge , whilst unnoticed by the Imperials , the left hand Elemental Horde about faced while its partner advanced behind a Mastiff Screen , the Mastiffs then proceeded to lob dogs at the flame cannon and were able to waver it ! the Ironclad Rifles walked forwards again and shot at the sharpshooters with a remarkable lack of effect.

The StonePriest then used his arcane affinity with the rocks of the Mountains to cause the Earth Elemental horde to surge forwards a whole inch into the pretend Wingy Kingy and being a Free Dwarf Stonepriest he immediately cast Bane Chant on the moving towers of rock, whilst the real Wingy Kingy attacked the Winged miscreant from the front , the result of which was the rapid demise of the Usurpers puppet Lord and a resounding cheer from the Free Dwarfs.

On the Right flank of the Free Dwarfs the regiment of Brock Riders charged the Mastiffs that had planted themselves directly in their path while Sveri Egilax and the second Brock regiment thundered up the hill to engage the Horde of Shieldbreakers standing on its crest. The Mastiff Regiment perished but the Horde was Merely wavered ! annoyingly the Shieldbreaker horde had not died and Imperial Dwarfs have Headstrong ( amusingly , despite Rob's protestations he habitually plays Free Dwarfs and had equipped this horde with Dwarven Ale , Doh ! but I wasn't going to allow him to have double Headstrong , no sir! ) This left both the Regiment and Sveri in a very Sticky position ! Ooops.


Turn Three and Turn Four

These two turns are combined because in the heat of the moment , I forgot to take a picture of the turn counter for turn Four and my notes became confused , probably due to the stress of the events as you will see , read on ....

After the slight hiccup of not enough of the deluded followers of Golloch being routed , the remainder of the Imperial Dwarfs commenced their third turn in quite a strong position.

On the right the Horde of Shieldbreakers , despite having Headstrong , failed their roll and were reduced to the role of spectators to the ensuing combat, However a flank charge from a troop of Ironclads resulted in the untimely demise of the unfortunate Regiment of Brock Riders. The Dwarf Lord decided to flank charge Sveri in an effort to behead the Free Dwarfs with one blow. Unfortunately for the followers of the Usurper he failed to kill Sveri which left him in the unenviable position of staring down a Regiment of Brock Riders in the flank. This Regiment then did the polite thing and charged him in the flank, while Sveri leapt forwards into the Shieldbreaker horde to his front. both the Regiment and the Brock hero paused briefly to remove Imperial Dwarf bits from under their paws before turning to face the Horde and Troop which were now feeling a bit less happy. The Remaining Shieldbreaker Horde on the Left flank of Golloch's Army took an hindered charge into the Horde of Free Dwarf Ironwatch Rifles that had already been damaged by the Organ Gun but failed to break them, the Imperial Cannon took a shot and wounded the remaining Elementals while the troop of Ironclads charged Sveri Egilax in an attempt to see him off , however his high nerve prevented them from pulling it off. This left Sveri free to use his Nimble ability to disengage from the troop , pivot 90° and then move down the hill , another 90° pivot and a charge into the flank of the Shieldbreakers Horde which managed to waver them , meanwhile the Regiment of Brocks Dealt with the cheeky troop of Ironclads, although they failed to rout them.

On the Free Dwarfs Left Flank the Horde of Shieldbreakers dealt Craggoth a bit of damage but failed to rout him until their second round of Combat when he finally succumbed to their hammers whilst the Ironguard and Faber Ironheart charged and annihilated the Troop of Brock Riders on the hill. This left all the imperial Dwarf forces on their right staring into the middle of the table ready for turn 5.

In the centre of the table the two behemoths charged into Herneas' chosen Ranger and wiped them out but luckily a sideways shuffle by Gollochs pride allowed just enough space for the ordinary Behemoth to pivot and receive the charge of an Horde of Earth Elementals in the front rather than the flank , these Elementals decided that combat was beneath them and caused a mighty 1 point of damage , the Stone Priests fluffed Bane Chant roll did help this a bit. shockingly Gollochs Fury then charged down the hill , through Herneas, and into the beleaguered Elementals , who promptly evaporated due to a massive accumulation of damage. Bollocks.

Meanwhile the Ironclad Regiment had charged the Mastiffs screening the second Elemental horde and convincingly failed to squish them.

Wingy Kingy had decided to engage the Imperial Dwarf Sharpshooters in the woods , he needed 4's to hit on Seven attacks , needless to say


This was the result of his attacks ! The Sharpshooters survived to Turn Five ! Banick Kholearm had decided to engage the perfidious Organ Gun and had managed to simply Disorder it , obviously the Free Dwarf Characters were armed with PillowFists.



Turn Five

This is where the story really begins lol.

The Shieldbreakers and the Ironguard along with Faber Ironheart started their long trundle towards the centre of the table , this was self inflicted as they had rather selfishly killed all the Free Dwarfs facing them !

Meanwhile in the centre of the table Gollochs Fury made short work of Poor Herneas and then overran into the poor Earth Elementals , the extra attacks , combined with those of the "ordinary" Behemoth, vaporised the poor Elemental Horde. The Sharpshooters failed to wound Wingy Kingy and the Ironclad Regiment only managed to wound the Mastiff Regiment.

The Imperial Cannon took another shot and very cheekily managed to rout the remaining Horde of Elementals !

After a passed Headstrong test the Shieldbreakers charged the Ironwatch Rifle horde and this time succeeded in seeing them off , they then turned to face the rather pissed off Sveri , who they had just ignored completely. The Brock Riders managed to finally see off the Troop of Ironclads and advanced forwards to support Sveri.

Wingy Kingy and Banick Kholearm continued to play silly beggars with the units they were in combat with resulting in the Organ Gun and Sharpshooters surviving for another turn !


Turn Six and Turn Seven

With little Unit Strength left on the table , things were looking dire for the Free Dwarfs , but they were determined to go down swinging, The lackeys of Golloch mostly moved to place themselves on the Free Dwarf side of the battlefield to win the invade scenario while the Free Dwarfs took their desperate last gambles.

The Behemoth in the centre took the flank of the doughty Mastiff Regiment and finally manged to kill them.

The Imperial Army Battle Standard Bearer finally took part in the battle by charging the heavily wounded Sveri in an attempt to see him off , but due to only having one attack and being hindered he failed , hurrah !

Banick Kholearm failed to kill the Organ gun Again and Wingy Kingy just stood chatting to the Sharpshooter troop he was supposed to be killing.

Then the Free Dwarfs had to suffer for a Turn Seven , darn !

The Imperial Dwarfs hunkered down for the last attacks of the Free Dwarfs.

A Bane Chanted Sveri Egilax crashed into the Non Furious Behemoth and battered it to death in a flurry of axe blows and sharpened badger claws ! he then ran past the other behemoth yelling and waving. The Hindered Brock Regiment actually failed to kill the Battle Standard Bearer BUT Banick Kholearm finally manged to trash the Organ gun he was fighting .

The most embarrassing thing was that Wingy King had spent 3 turns fighting a Sharpshooter Troop and it was still alive at the end of the Game , Shame on Him !

So the result was a resounding victory to the duped Legions of the twisted Usurper Golloch.

Fun was had by all, with both the players and the spectators getting into the flow of the battle , there were highs and lows but the game was played in a very sporting , although ultra competitive, way with the Honour of both Free and Imperial Dwarfs at stake.

Hopefully we can get a rematch at some point in the future as the Book of Grudges is still open.


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