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Author Topic: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?  (Read 3164 times)

Offline grimgorgoroth

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How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« on: July 06, 2016, 08:17:36 PM »
I'm not sure if this is the place to post, if not please move to another section.

So, I have a battle against a Dwarven Holds player. This is the decisive battle to see if I pass to the second round of the Dark Dwarf League we are having. I won the league last year, but now I'm in danger of not qualifying if I don't beat this drunken dwarf!  My list is as follows:

Marcus el Piadoso:- Plelate on Waraltar
Omusairopus:- Lvl 4 Light on Arcane Engine
Jose Miguel:- BSB on foot
good ol Captus:- Captain on Pegasus
Mithrandir: scroll caddie Lvl 2 Light
Pato: Artificier

X2 units of skirmishing pistols militia
1 unit of skirmishing militia (Mithrandir scroll caddie goes here)
48 halbadiers
6 electoral cavalry
18 imperial guard (great swords, BSB goes here)
3 Knight of the Sun Griffon
1 Volley Gun (Pato the Artificier goes here)
1 STank

I usually put my 2 buff wagons (Altar and Arcane Engine) behind my block of helbadiers and imperial guard.
 I win most battles with this list.
But, he's coming at me with:

Khalim Balin- Dwarf King on shield bearers
X3 Runic Priest
BSB
X2 units of 19 grey beards
X1 27 Iron Guard
X1 Copter
X1 organ gun
X1 unit of 16 Rangers

He's coming at me mama!  :ph34r:

How do you recommend I take him on?

Offline SorenJ

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2016, 12:13:02 PM »
I'm no expert with 9'th-age and Dwarfs are supposedly pretty tough, but here are my observations.

1. you're screwed because he's much better at grinding than you are. 2. You're using a light council and Dwarfs are pretty good at dispelling. 3. all in all this is about the ugliest mach-up I've seen.

The Stank, although nerfed since 8'ed, is pretty darn good against any unit not wielding great weapons, however those rune smiths will give AP(1) to their units so even here you're not safe. Your second biggest asset is the Arcane engine I'm guessing you're using the one that grants Lightning Reflexes, means your great weapons will strike at initiative, however Dwarfs have shieldwall and so have either a 6++/5++.

My advice: Get the organ gun with your captasus, stand back and try to make good use of the militias pistols and spells to reduce his numbers (i.e. minimise static combat res.) Then thurn two/three throw in the steam tank to tie up one of his units whie the rest of your army try to outnumber him.

Edit: Remember that Shield Wall (dwarf ward save) does not work against Impact hits or Grinding as these are special attacks. So charging with the buff wagons is actually something to consider.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2016, 12:16:56 PM by SorenJ »

Offline grimgorgoroth

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2016, 08:30:32 PM »
Thank you for the advice SorenJ, yes I plan to hang back for a few turns to shoot him with what I have and I'll charge one of his blocks with my Stank that doesn't have the dwarf king in it.
I guess I'll use my skirmish troops to chaff him up lure him into a trap and try to take out his units one at a time.
The Arcane Engine is with lightning reflexes so that should help with the Imperial Guard great swords hitting first.
Captus will probably try to take out the organ gun and/or the copter.
All the same I'll try to use my light council to weaken him a bit and then buff myself up as much as possible before I go in for the kill.

If anyone else has adivice I'd love to hear it.

He has little shooting so he has to come to me. It's not going to be easy but for the Empire I'll do my best!

Offline Cannonofdoom

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2016, 02:34:53 PM »
The best thing to do against dwarfs is outshoot them and then defeat them in parts. Run stuff around using chaff, while you deal with his big grindy blocks one at a time. Swordsmen support units are a great complement to your halberdiers, especially with the buff wagons. Really study the support unit rules. They're VERY strong. A support unit of swordsmen buffed with distracting can hold its own even against dwarf grinders.
CannonofDoom spews his shit at me all the time and I haven't banned him.

Offline Warlord

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2016, 05:15:11 AM »
You don't.

Because one of the designers of 9th age loves and plays only Dwarves, so he ensured that his pet army is strongest.
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I hate people who don't paint their armies, hate them with all my guts. Beats me how they value other things over painting, like eating or brushing teeth.

Offline Zygmund

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2016, 07:01:25 AM »
Because one of the designers of 9th age loves and plays only Dwarves, so he ensured that his pet army is strongest.

This keeps coming up. From the same people. And is terribly opinioned.

Dwarfs are a solid army, but at the T9A forum it's generally agreed that...
a) they're not too strong
b) they lack a lot of things that make the game fun & flexible.

Dwarfs are very good at grinding, have the strongest gunline, can build a vanguard/ambush army, and can build a flying circus to annoy. Yet each of these comes with a price, and because of the unit costs, it's really hard to try to combine them. And despite the crazy march move rule, Dwarfs regularly end up milling in the middle. Just watch the battle reports.

To the issue.

Here, the Dwarf player probably pools his king, BSB, and at least one Rune Priest into the Iron Guard unit (what is it, really - Deep Watch or King's Guard?), creating a deathstar that hits hard and protects its points superbly. At least 1100 pts in one unit of 30 models. If you can stay away from that unit and beat the rest of his army, he can't win. If you must fight that unit, you need to bring most of your army in, which is only possible if you've beaten him elsewhere. So, a classic deathstar scenario. My experience and mathhammer tell me you have really hard time beating the deathstar even if you can multicharge it and grind on your terms. And because of those two greybeard units, you're unlikely to have the freedom to fight his deathstar on your terms.

Nothing in your army can kill his king. As long as there's one Bodyguard model left in the King's unit, he won't run. Ever.

His ability to grind eats away your ability to threat him with your small hard-hitting units. They become as much a liability as a potential force.

Thus, avoid the deathstar at all costs. I don't know if Light magic helps you in this. It might not be the optimal choice.

Deployment is hugely important. If he can make a well-supported push with his main unit, and you don't have the right chaff and anvil just there, it's hard to stop him. Because of the deathstar (half his points), he can effectively fight on two fronts. You cannot. So he has the option to divide and challenge you. You really need to take out one of the greybeard units early if you want to play the middle & late games from a position of strength.

A couple of comments on your list:
- I'd squeeze points somewhere to make that Greatsword unit bigger. You need numerical supremacy in cc, otherwise it just melts away.
- The Halberdiers can only work as an anvil, probably in bus formation. A little less could do.
- Magic is always fickle, so going strong on mages is a gamble. It also takes points away from the grinding units.

I'd go through the philosophy of magic in your list. Does it pose a real threat to the Dwarf player? Does it bring best synenergy to your combat units? Is it worth its points?

If you can't change your list (could happen in a league/campaign), the matchup is indeed bad.

-Z
Live in peace and prosper.

Offline Warlord

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2016, 08:18:09 AM »
Because one of the designers of 9th age loves and plays only Dwarves, so he ensured that his pet army is strongest.

This keeps coming up. From the same people. And is terribly opinioned.

I have taken the opinion and run with it. My apologies. To be honest, I have always found dwarves a very tough opponent, and nothing in 8th (and now 9th) has changed my experience and opinion.
Quote from: Gneisenau
I hate people who don't paint their armies, hate them with all my guts. Beats me how they value other things over painting, like eating or brushing teeth.

Offline Zygmund

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2016, 12:35:04 PM »
To be honest, I have always found dwarves a very tough opponent, and nothing in 8th (and now 9th) has changed my experience and opinion.

Completely agree here.  :icon_biggrin:

-Z
Live in peace and prosper.

Offline grimgorgoroth

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #8 on: August 31, 2016, 07:27:39 PM »
I won! In fact I massacred my dwarf opponent. He deployed his general in the middle and the other units on the sides

I held back because he put his army down first, and when it was my turn I used my banishment bound spell from the War Altar to destroy his organ gun,
Then I concentrated eveything I had to kill his main block of Iron Guard in the center with his general.

My knights and sun griffins charged his rangers that held them in place all battle, my skirmishers chaffed the left unit of his grey beards all game too.

His general charged my Stank that held up nicely and I counter charged with my helberdier hoard and Prelate all buffed up with hatred and lightning attacks from the arcane engine, same thing with my imperial guard that got charged by the other unit of grey beards. But as the Imperial guard had the Arcane Engine giving them lighting reflexes meaning as they had two handed weapons they strike by initiative order meaning I got to kill them real dead first.

The War Altar, Arcane Engine buff wagons rule!!

In the end we ground down the Iron Guard and then dwarf king rolled two sixes and fled but my general caught him and took him as prisoner.

Great game, thanks for all the advice!

Offline Zygmund

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2016, 10:24:30 AM »
:Ohmy: Hooray for the Empire!

How did you get that Banishment through in the first turn? Lucky with the dice or cunning with the phasing of spells? What did you threaten him with, so that he couldn't counter the Banishment?

Did you get a flank charge with your Halberdier horde against his Iron Guard block? So that few if any Iron Guard hit you back in the first turn? How many Halberdiers could strike, and did you use the Fight in Extra Rank order?

Was the WAltar in that combat?

When the first turn hate wore down, how did you keep on killing his Iron Guard with your Halberdiers? The average is around 2 or 3 per turn. Were you luckier than that?

Didn't the Iron Guard pile in with their Rune magic, or could you continuously dispel them?

Were you continuously able to get the higher CR? Were you lucky with your rolling?

In the end we ground down the Iron Guard and then dwarf king rolled two sixes and fled but my general caught him and took him as prisoner.

Killing a unit of 30 Iron Guard & characters with a STank and a Halberdier horde is quite a feat!  :smile2:

-Z
Live in peace and prosper.

Offline grimgorgoroth

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2016, 05:56:47 PM »
He stopped the first banishment from the wizard but he couldn't stop the one from the Waltar, that way I killed his organ gun first turn, lucky for me I didn't cast it with irresistible force!

I used my volley gun, small arms shooting and every magic missile I had at his Iron guard to thin them out, by the time they reached me they were half strong, he charged my Stank but only did a few wound then my grinding attack took them down even more.

On my turn I said F%&k it and CHARGE!
My Helbadier horde lead by my BSB in the front and my WAltar in the flank. Buffed up my units with all the blessing I could and did the FiER order so it was about 40 attacks with hatred from the WAltar and +1 to hit with the Arcane Engine, re rolling to wound with the blessing and if I remember correctly the speed of light spell, impact hits from the WAltar plus the grinding attacks from the wounded STank.

He couldn't save against so many wounds. I also concentrated attacks on his rune priests and killed them before he could give any more armour piercing and rune magic to his troops.

It was glorious.



Offline Zygmund

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Re: How do I beat a fighty 9th Age Dwarf army?
« Reply #11 on: September 02, 2016, 11:27:11 PM »
You really pulled out the trick I've been trying but failing. But my opponent plays hard Dwarven chaff, so it usually takes more time to get to the grips. And somehow against the big hard Dwarf unit, I often roll badly for shooting. And I've never had but one turn of effective shooting, because of my opponent's cunning and screening.

Likely my list is a bit less competitive than yours, whereas my opponent's list might be a little more competitive than your opponent's. The super cheap Vengeance Seekers would benefit your opponent too.

-Z
Live in peace and prosper.