Vox Populi Classic Fantasy Dwarves

  • So with the new vote out for which set will replace the British Expeditionary Force, I'm going to explain why I chose the Classic Fantasy Dwarves and what I think they can come with.

    But before I get to that, I need to get the obvious out of the way, the fact that Warhammer: The Old World will come around eventually and probably bring back a lot of old dwarf kits. There is also the problem of how the dwarves will stylistically fit with the halflings, goblins, ogres, and skeletons. So my proposed solution, to both give the dwarves a style that would fit with the rest of the classic fantasy range and keep the tradition of dwarves being more technologically advanced, is to give them a Byzantine/Varangian armor style.

    An image I found on reddit real quick.


    Now for weapons, naturally we'd have swords, axes, spears, bows, and crossbows, but also guns. The fantasy excuse would be that the Dwarves have found a way to make their Dwarven Fire (basically the Byzantine Greek Fire that was a proto-flamethrower) into a propellant to fire projectiles at enemies. One thing I would add as well would be big guns and crossbows that come with pavises.

    These things above.


    Hopefully this sounds like a good idea. I'd love to hear your thoughts on the idea.

  • Personally, given that Oathmark already does good Nordic Dwarfs, the only “Norse myth” I have actually heard about them made them seem more magitechy as whole than viking (in the old myths they were craftsmen, not warriors),  and the fact Dwarfs as we know them probably actually come from Christian era Germany not Pagan Scandinavia (like pretty much all the other LOTR fantasy races except trolls which came from Christian era Scandinavia), I don't even think they need to stick with  Ancient to middle ages European themes . 

     Unless they plan on historical scaling  their Einherjar and giving them more fantasy weapon and helmet options (which would probably be perfect in all honesty),  I think they should just skip the typical Norse influences and do something braver and more original than the meat deficient Vikings they previewed or even Vangairans (though that is a better option than more halfpint Vikings,  personally I would want them to match up tech wise with the enfield rifle armed lizardmen to duke it out in games of Sludge, pretty much anything would work with the skelles sets just fine as long as its  Bronze age tech level or higher).

    Maybe something like Dwarves that are a homage to the old Ralpartha Death Dark dwarves (which sculpt wise where a mix of WW1 German/Prussian and Early/mid Roman Empire influences uniform wise and armed with axes, crossbows, and flintlocks).



    Or perhaps even just skip making this with armies in mind and focus on doing it as Dwarven adventurers instead.


    Or they could just do Mohawk slayer style dwarves (the most fun Dwarf minis I have built thus far wherethe  Avatars of War’s variant which had tons of character and whimsy which is what you really want with dwarves).  


    That all aside,  whatever design they come up with I would kind of like to see dwarfs with some axegun combo weapons because they are fun:


  • I think it would be best to stick to the simpler, LOTR styled ones. WGA will always have cheaper prices than GW, and the point between the "Oldhammer" and "Realistic-ish" GW models doesn't look very nice to me, so they could still beat the re-released models. GW traditionalists will almost certaintly just continue buying GW products, so marketing to them is kind of absurd. Enough companies do GW competition already, anyways. The other aesthetics, although cool, will sell less than generic ones. It's called "Classic Fantasy" for a reason. Plus, Tolkien-esque dwarves will match with the goblins and halflings.

  • @Brian Van De Walker Yeah that was why I was thinking more Byzantine. Especially since Dwarves as we know them are more from German Mythology, and Germans have dealt with and interacted with the "exotic" Byzantine Greeks before. I like your idea of the Dwarves being more Magitech compared to the other factions. Part of the reason I was thinking of Pavises for the guns and crossbows is because I've got Kings of War on the brain and...... yeah I would prefer any plastic dwarves to their dwarves.... problem is that Oathmark Dwarves don't have an option for guns.

  • @Estoc (thinks about it) Nah, Viking themed Dwarves don't really fit in that well with the Goblins or Halflings either. Dwarves are always supposed to be more technologically advanced than either of those races and the Halflings are clearly Baron's war to early HYW tech with Roman influences while the goblins have at least been looting people capable of mass producing strangereal WW1 style helmets and 17th century hunting spears.😆

     But more  seriously I think LOTR has more than enough Viking dwarves in chainmail and other minis in general  to satisfy that player base with more on the way all the time (really check out Oathmark), and it would still be trying to sell with the GW gamer crowd in mind first since GW is the main LOTR game in town right now. 

    It would be smartest to sell with KOW (which has a solid player base) or maybe one of the more fun or exotic  9th age Dwarf cultures in mind right off the bat. Also there are a lot of newer fantasy games with higher tech levels like Sludge, I say magitech them up, it even fits better with Classical fantasy line overall than just short stack historical Vikings which lets be honest are kinda of unimaginative and overdone.

    The only reason I can see to stick with a "keep it simple" design is if they stick to old plan of multi setting the dwarves which I feel is unwise when they could be done as a "one and done" infantry set for most practical purposes. And even in that case there are better KISS design themes to choose from for dwarves that would fit the Classical fanasy line as a whole better than Vikings and just bearth some life into the idea (like mixed era Bavarians maybe in plate armor or even just  resizing the Einherjar).

    @Charles Tottington Yeah, the Kings of War Dwarves really do need that gunpowder goodness which along with mini heavy magitech fantasy RPGs and games like Sludge in addtion to me just being kinda of bored of Viking/darkage themes for fantasy while I am reading fantasy manga where Dwaves have stuff like boltaction rifles and wear samurai helmets with Valley of the wind style gasmasks is why I suggest making Dwarves more Magitechy. 

    Honestly though  if they where to just resize the Einherjar and give them diffrent more fantasy-ish helmets and  weapons (even if it was just the Fireforge Men at Arms style weapon mix with more axes and 2 enfield rifles replacing half the crossbows) it would be Magitechy enough for me and likely norse enough for those really asking for that.

    Oh, and practically everyone and their twin brother outside the British Isles and far east asia interacted with the  "exotic Byzantine Greeks"😉.  

  • Sorry for dissent, but there are a lot of other producers that make from good to excellent dwarwes' minis, either in plastic and metal/resin. I think that WGA should focus more on lesser made subjects, as seen in other discussions. such as expanding its Canno Fodder's range, or support weapons for Ooh Ras.

    Perhaps some STL files for characters from fantasy settings and parts for converting them in "Magitechy" could be useful, but dwarves are an over produced item.

  • @Brian Van De Walker I never mentioned vikings?

  • May be a little different, but what of more of a Turkish or Ottoman influence? 

  • Something common to most "Classic Fantasy" depictions of Dwarves is a Scottish Accent.

    As such, I feel it would suit them to have a Scottish Highlander style theme.

    Something like the below examples, but with added Massive Beards and Axe-Muskets.

  • @Indy Techwisp I unironically love this, Granted painting the tartans will be heck, but that looks fun. Armored Scottish Dwarves in kilts.

  • @Estoc  You didn't need to. Viking themed Dwarves was heavily argued as the "they must be this way" theme in an older apparently now lost thread about Dwarves (rather bad arguments mostly  if I recall right since it was more of a lack of imagination rather than anyone actually wanting them that way😆). Likewise its crystal clear what the STL sculpts are, what with those nose guard helmet designs .

    @Miyuso Actually Ottomen themed Dwarves would be perfect for me given the one Isekai pulp setting I have been making which has Dwarves that are heavily Ottomen inspired culturally, particularly if they where magiteched up Ottomen Dwarves.

    Less personal note and arguments, theme wise Ottomen dwarves would also work great for “evil Dwarves" given IRL history but still be unaligned enough visually for most folks to still work as the "good guys", they used guns (they where actually more up to date than the European nations they fought at times) and they are actually pretty Dwarfy in the helmet department:



    Ottoman chichak helmet with its German counterpart:



    Though I wouldn't really want them to be based on the Janissiary corps, I feel that should be more human/beastmen/elven slave troops job. Maybe stick with the armored elite troops.

    @Indy Techwisp  Only if they come with bagpipes and mohawks.

    Could also combind cultural themes, not sure how Turkishscot/Scottishturk Dwarves would look, but I bet it would be gloriously.

    Another possible theme WA could go with setting wise is have the Dwarves be the "foreign backers" of the Goblin and Lizardmen Alliance. Maybe give them some of the "fantasy WW1 ashigaru" helmets (perhaps have some with added genric armored face masks) and boar hunting spears the goblin's have but in better condition along with some Dwarf made axe rifles variants of the Enfield the Lizardmen have as well as the typical stuff in a dwarven arsenal and a more plate armor look.

    Which brings up another question how do you guys feel about combining the Great Axes with the rifles? I think it would save space  and look cool, but I know there are others who prefer one type weapons over combinations weapons.

  • @Brian Van De Walker Allow me to rephrase: I am not arguing for viking dwarves. I was, in fact, arguing against them. Could you please read messages fully before responding to them

    On the topic of that post, The only thing I really want for the dwarves is to be able to use them in a Middle-Earth adjacent setting.  I would like to have full equipment options (hand weapon and shield/great weapon/bow) without being forced to use guns or convert.

  • @Estoc I don't mean to be rude, but you where not actually arguing against Viking dwarves since LOTR Dwarves  as far as thier "uniforms and gear" go may as well be Viking Dwarves (LOTR Dwarves are Dark Age European Themed Dwarves in Chainmail, which is the same thing as the Viking dwarf STLs WA is currently selling).

    That said you really should take a look at the oathmark Dwarven infantry set and give it a chance if you don't have a 3D printer, its has exactly what you want as you just described and will likely cost the same as any dwarves put out by WA.  The rest of us are kinda of tired of "simple dwarves" (ie Dark Age European themed dwarves in Chainmail) and really want guns and crossbows in some form in the same first set as the melee weapons (not bows)😉. 

  • @Brian Van De Walker I second this. We already have plenty of ranges centered around Lotor and Warhammer lite dwarves with chainmail and other low-tech stuff. What we want are dwarves that ARE more advanced than their neighbors and have stuff like guns, armored engines, cannons, etc. Heck, that's why I suggested the pavise, its a mobile shield wall for ranged troops to hide behind (I got the idea from Mantic Sharpshooters, who are apparently the only range that has something like this, though the minis themselves are rather sad looking.)

    Mixing Byzantine and Ottoman themes, particularly helmets, would arguably the best option since as you mentioned, Ottomans make a good style for evil dwarves given their irl history compared to the Byzantines, who have more of a "constantly being pressured by barbarian hordes on all sides" vibe to them, which is very Dwarfy when you think about who the Dwarves are often pitted against (Orcs, Goblins, Skaven, etc). Going near eastern Byzantine/Ottoman style would also give WGA a good launching point for what expansions they can add, heavily armored infantry with guns that shoot greek fire, cannons, palace guard, and as you mentioned with the Jannisary corps, slave soldiers that could be of human/beastman/elven/goblin origins.

    Lastly, Greataxes on rifles sounds like a great idea. I always had the idea of gun hammers for my sci fi dwarves in my original setting. I don't get why people always go for the knife or sword option when mixing with guns, Custodes are actually a great example of mixing greataxes/spears with guns.

  • @Charles Tottington I don't think that would even really be much of a mix since the Ottomens took alot of their armor evolution off the Byzantines if I recall correctly (they did take over Constantinople after all😆), I think they even used pavise shields like you mentioned.

     Greek fire guns, honestly I kind of want to see that on historical minis first as it would give the Dark Age line some much needed life, is there a KOW list reason for mentioning that? But a flamethrower would be interesting and there are some skirmish rule sets that give dwarves that option, though I agree I don't see that as first set add presay, maybe with a cannon set?

    I think the historical Janissary set once done would work as "Fantasy Janissary corps" for most folks that really want to get into the Ottomen theme for their fantasy dwarf army and if they want add some other races, well the goblin head swaps work really well on a lot WA history sets giving you some cool orcs/hobgoblin types doing a couple of other fantasy races with their headswaps set up the same way would cover that.


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