Dwarf ideas

  • I want to see if WA do a dwarven set. They can do 30 dwarfs and have them wearing like a medium armour. They can have options of Norman, Horned helmets, Gjermundbu or bare head. Hammer/axe with shields. Great hammers. And then crossbow.

  • I also hope to see a dwarven set, and hopefully one that steps outside or re-imagines the traditional dwarf tropes a bit:

    • Costumes, Arthur Rakham Style:  Stereotypical fantasy dwarves tend to fall into a "short, Scottish viking" kind of rut:  chainmail, horned helmets, and big, red beards; some of the first fantasy illustrations I saw of dwarves were a bit different:  Arthur Rakham's fairy-tale dwarves tended to wear dark-coloured coats and wide-brimmed, conical hats, with oddly buckled and heeled shoes, and gloomy, sour expressions on faces with exaggerated features, and relatively restrained but strange-looking beards and eyebrows.  These are the sorts of dwarves who are as apt to trick Rip Van Winkle into drinking enchanted ale and sleeping in fairy-land for 40 years, as they are to find themselves enchanted by in spite of their grumpy nature by Snow White.  These are just as recognizably "dwarfy", but have a dark and creepy side to them; there's also a nice, "retro" fantasy quality to them that doesn't get used in modern fantasy very much! 
    • Armor:  I think these costumes are fine as-is, but if necessary, some of these dwarves might wear a breastplate or brigandine chest armor, with some helmeted head options.)
    • Picks and Hammers:  Most sculptors seem to go with the traditional axe-dwarf thing, but it always seems to me that, as a folk who spend their time under the earth, digging for treasures and crafting strange stone and metal artifacts for the gods, hammers and picks seem a more natural fit.  Verfy few fantasy figure sets include proper mauls, warhammers and war picks! 
    • Poleaxes:  Pole-arms might seem an odd weapon for dwarves, but when you're short, stout, strong, and short-tempered, pole-axes might be just the thing to keep enemies with better reach at bay!
    • Ranged Weapons - Throwing Hammers, Blunderbusses:  Seems like crossbows are rather standard for fantasy dwarves, and perhaps inevitable (who doesn't like good crossbow sculpts?), but for something a little different, maybe some throwing-hammers?  It always seems to me that dwarves are a good fit for old-fashioned blackpowder guns, too:  flintlock pistols, maybe a blunderbuss or two - the nice thing about blackpowder long guns is that they are held similarly to crossbows, with some similar parts, so maybe the sculpting could provide arms and a partial stock, with a choice of blunderbuss barrel or crossbow arms to add on?


    Likely Wargaming Opponents and Allies:

    • WA's Lizard Men have fought legendary shooting wars with these dwarves, deep in the bowels of the hollow earth.  The sound of their gunfire deep underground is sometimes confused with thunder, or even earthquakes....
    • WA's Goblins, naturally, are some of the fiercest opponents.  Or, perhaps, that dubious honour might go to WA's Ogres.
    • WA's Conquistadores might make splendid human allies.  Or enemies - I can almost imagine these dwarves ending up on the wrong end of an inquisitor's conquest... Those wee little pople are drinking and dancing and rioting in the hills again, turning the local farmers' milk sour?  You know what to do: summon the Witch-Finder General!
    • WA Halfling Militia:  for some reason, I suspect the halflings and dwarves have a pretty good understanding, and cooperate well together.  Or maybe not necessarily:  they can probably carry on quite a feud!



    • I could not resist the temptation to raid a couple sprues of WA's Dark Ages Irish for their shillelaghs (wooden war-clubs, and forerunners of a gentleman's walking cane), perhaps the cloaks, and probably the war-dogs, too, painted up as black hell-hounds of the moor! 
    • I would reckon these dwarves aren't beyond allying themselves with a banshee or two, they look a bit haunted in those old Arthur Rakham illustrations - so, mix their ranks with a Reaper Bones Dwarf zombie, skeleton, or ghost, or two, or three.  Or maybe a pumpkin-headed scarecrow or two...
    • Mix with WA Einerjar bits for a very different sort of DWARVES IN SPACE!!!!!
    • Combine with Stargrave crew bits for Shadowrun dwarves.  (Maybe some Reaper Bones CAV vehicles might serve as drones for a WA dwarf decker?)
    • Those who prefer more traditional beardy axe-dwarfs might get some use from the heads, weapons and shields from the upcoming WA Goths set.


  • Personally, I think they should be about the same size as the Halflings and wear a generic plate cuirass armor and pants with a normal long sleeved shirt under it minus shoulder armor (or separate shoulder armor) so we can kitbash easier with the halflings and of course boots. Clothing wise I think this also how fantasy humans should be done and possibly humanoids in general unless you have a real theme in mind since this is basically what most city/town gate guardsmen, soldiers, and front liner adventures wear in fiction.

    For heads I think either a WW1 fantasy style Pickelhaube helmets or fantasy style Stahlhelm head and maybe some sort of soft cap or shako  in addition to fantasy Viking helmet head-swaps (some with horns some without), bare heads and maybe evil dwarf helmet heads. With this selection they will be more versatile overall head wise at least and work for games like Death in the Dark and Panzerfäuste as well as general industrial/black powder fantasy settings as will as classic fantasy. Maybe add some attachable helmets lanterns/lights to put on the helmet heads you want.

    As to weapons they should have some long axe guns instead of just matchlocks/muskets for sure and in at least 2 different poses (one firing and one swinging/fighting), maybe a pickaxe and/or pickaxe gun combo, and maybe a sword or axe pistol combo in addition to the normal crossbows, round shields, and hand axes.

    I think a good upgrade sprue for them should have, along with any of the missed rectangular shields and hand pistols, maybe some newer later era guns, some spears or pikes since WA is not doing open hands, and maybe a flame thrower (Death in the Dark, Panzerfäuste, other crazy games).

    If a second set of them is done it should either be light troops wearing a fantasy take 17th to early 20th century military uniforms with maybe separate cloaks and hood head options with more guns, crossbows and mining tools along with spears/halberds (dwarves are advanced and should look it in a world where the backwoods jungle scalies are making flintlock boomsticks) or berserkers/slayers with maybe hand guns in addtion to axes (cause they are just dang fun).  

    Alternatively to save on design costs WA could just do a “more melee weapons, shields and crossbows” upgrade sprue for their Death Fields space dwarfs, bam fantasy dwarfs done.



  • It's worth noting you can kinda kitbash the death fields einherjar. The armor will always be fairly sci-fy but a metallic paint should get a general idea then you might consider using the halfling heads and a few other arm types from other sets. I hav'nt tried this it's off the top of my head but I think that would work fairly well

  • Now that Brian mentions it, back in the 1980s, I did find a great little group of fantasy dwarves somewhere who were wearing pickelhaube-style helmets on simple cuirass-with-chainmail style bodies, holding gladiuses, I believe, who ended up looking too cool for me to pass up.  I can't remember who manufactured them - I don't think anyone else did that sort of thing, especially not these days, and they seemed to be made for miniatures wargaming of some sort since they were sold as a set of three and one was holding a standard of some sort - but they ended up being my go-to minis anytime I played a Dwarf in Heroquest or D&D.


    As an aside, I commented somewhere on the Conquistadores, doing my best to sell the Age of Discovery as an alternative to Dark Ages Europe for "Classic Fantasy":


    For fantasy gamers, it occurs to me that the conquistador weapons and armor look pretty good alongside WA’s halfling militia and what we’ve seen so far of the landsknecht ogres, not to mention some of the gun options for the lizard men seem like a great fit alongside all of the above, and the conquistadors would make a fine fantasy human army, in a style refreshingly different from the medieval fantasy cliche!

    The “Age of Discovery” seems to me to lend itself much better to fantasy world-building anyway: exploration, adventure, and conflict in strange “New Worlds” against a backdrop of Renaissance science and invention on one hand (see the wildly imaginative drawings of aircraft and war machines made by Leonado Da Vinci!), and inquisitions and witch-trials on the other, with an apocalyptic Hundred Years’ War and a devastating worldwide plague as centerpieces to the era, makes for some great fantasy world-building material.

    Hopefully WA keeps making their fantasy figures in more or less similar styles (some halfling handgunners or goblin musketeers, perhaps?) Dwarves and Elves are wide open for something refreshingly different....

    Hopefully we also see more historical figures from this period to go along with the conquistadors and Aztecs… Musketeers of the Guard/Cavaliers, Protestant Puritans/New Model Army, and Corsairs/Buccaneers seem like splendid follow-up historical sets for roughly the same era!


    The Conquistadores seem to me ripe for this sort of thing, coming already with a sort of cuirass-and-cloth outfit and a variety of helms and hats, and coming with generic fantasy-friendly arms already like swords and shields, crossbows, and pole-arms, in addition to the more unusual guns, and the Conquistadores seem to me a nice fit alongside the Halflings, Goblins, and upcoming Landsnecht Ogres, but -

    I also think the Age of Discovery is wide open for more sets of this sort from armies around the world, and a more generic "army-builder" type set of humans in cuirass-and-cloth outfits might cross over well with both existing Classic Fantasy sets, and historical figures in this era!  For human fantasy armies, and for the "Renaissance..." line, the more sets that can serve both markets, the merrier!

  • @Yronimos Whateley

    Actually for Renaissance style fantasy in general I think Russia, Poland and Eastern Europe in general have more of a classic fantasy vibe to them than the age of discovery European nations. 

    That said though I think WA could easily get away with doing some of the classic “everyone does them” races as 19th century colonials armed with the typical magic, swords, armor, and  bows combo alongside steam engine tanks and fantasy style Dreyse needle-guns for the Classical fantasy line’s world easy (and they probably should do some that way just to spice things up), since as I have mentioned earler we have loincloth wearing rednecked Grand Canyon Lizardmen armed with homemade flintlocks running around the jungles/swamps (that’s late 18th century native armaments at the very least, more likely mid-19th).

    And ironically, yes I do think that would still work with the upcoming ogres, etc. and does cover the category of “classic fantasy” though more in the Japanese media sense of the label as I have seen plenty of JRPGs, LNs, Manga and Anime where in setting differing tech levels and styles of clothing like that exist side by side being marketed as classical/generic fantasy, and there is more than a few table top RPGs and wargames that are the same way now.  Also I agree the halflings at least, and probably goblins as well (though not as big a deal) should get gun upgrade sprues (as there are more games for them with guns now, plus they are lizardman chow without them).     

    Edit: Oh, and those dwarves where probably for Death in the Dark by RAFM, have the rule book and its a good example of what I am talking about.

  • RAFM sounds about right to me - I remember that my FLGS used to carry a lot of RAFM models (alongside Ral Partha figures) at the time, now that you jogged my memory, and that would have almost certainly been where I got them!  Those dwarves are some fantastic miniatures - sculpting and manufacturing and style have movedon since then, but I thought those dwarves really held up well over the years and still look modern today.


    I think "classic fantasy" was always a sort of "fantasy kitchen sink" - a random soup of different inspirations and influences from different settings, eras, and regions, with, I'm sure, tons of influence from Edgar Rice Burroughs' John Carter novels at least as much as Tolkien, Lovecraft, Harryhausen, etc.... the 1980s certainly brought us "Masters of the Universe", Yor: Hunter from the Future, Star Wars, and so on as a pretty regular part of the fantasy of the era:  ray guns alongside swords, a jumble of Hyborean-style barbarian warriors alongside medieval knights, joining up with Gandalf-style wizards to face down dragons and Chimeras and Cthulhu monsters, when they aren't being attacked by golden-age pirates and Victorian-style vampires alongside prehistoric lizard-men, or looting an ancient spaceship crash on an Expedition to Barrier Peak....

    Things got a little weird from my perspective a few years ago when on one hand, I started hearing some self-described "fantasy purists" trying to eliminate the "impurities" of anything that wasn't within some very strict "Generic Medieval European Fantasy" limits, which included "no gunpowder!", etc., and on the other, a new generation of D&D gamer with a fantasy background I must have missed went the othe direction and seemed to deliberately shun anything that looked "too Tolkien" in favor of some really strange (to me) things (kind of the half-vampire-steampunk-ninja-fox-girl sort of thing!)

    I don't know quite where that leaves me, except that I like the "generic fantasy" stuff, but like it even more when it's got room to breathe, and do something a little different from the rigid "Generic Medieval European Fantasy", without losing touch with classic fantasy influences I remember from the '70s and '80s, so I'm pretty excited every time I see someone do something a little different with the generic fantasy standbys like dwarves, elves, and orcs, comparred to, say, Warcraft, Warhammer, and the Tolkien movies... especially when there are so many options that do "play it safe"!

    Which is to say, I look forward to any dwarves WA brings us, but especially if they do something different from the standard-issue Beardy Mc-Axedwarves of Clan Stonetankard!  :D 

  • @Yronimos Whateley

    If you really want a shocker, in some of the isekai Light Novels and manga I have come across, the MC ends up in a world they describe as being “a medieval European fantasy world”, but when you the reader looks at: everyone is dressed like it’s 1745 to 1999 and are using bolt action rifles and clip loaded pistols alongside the normal generic D&D medieval arsenal, not to mention they have airships and tanks as well as horse wagons and mounted knights.

     It’s like: “what the jazzysnaps makes you think its “generic  medieval” or even “European” MC?! Maybe this is the real reason why you got hit by a truck and isakied in the first place; you are not paying attention to your surroundings!”🤣

    Well anyway joking aside,  given how things are with fantasy and that we are talking general purpose with a lot of these sets, I think the safe way to go for the classical fantasy line setting is to assume that yes there are chainmail wearing sword swinging bow using dark age style human nations around but there is also Age of Discovery matchlock and plate armor human nations and tank driving bolt action gun toting human nations, etc. as well as some nations (human and otherwise) that use a mix of tech levels alongside one another so it looks like a game of Civilization with magic thrown in. (Basically whatever is in WA’s historical ranges that you feel makes good opponents/allies for your builds game wise).  

    Certainly the lizard man set could easily be used for several different tribes with different tech levels right out of the box thanks to headswaps and weapon options and I think the Dwarves could and should be done along those lines as well.

    Certainly if the bodies at least are done similar to the way I suggest for the first set it should be doable (because as I have mentioned elsewhere that plane pants, boots and cuirass combo is gosh darn versatile with the right head swaps and weapon options) but there might be other ways.

  • Right - in general, I think something a little different from what other manufacturers are doing, but just general and vague enough to customize into with distinctive head and arm/weapon/shield options. 

    Cuirass with simple trousers, boots, and shirts would work fine by me, as does a cloth coat of some sort - and no reason why the same kit couldn't use both!  The sort of thing that might as easily pass for a breast plate or brigandine, or a sort of greatcoat, smock, or gambeson, would be fine by me.

    And with that in mind, after seeing what one WA customer was able to do by putting the Dark Age Irish cloaks on skeletons, I think we can add to this sort of "generic torso" thing things like distinctive cloaks and pauldroons/shoulder-armor to really customize this sort of figure in ways that would look very different.

    In short, I think it might be the helmets/hats, gear, and shoulder and cape options that might really bring out more distinctive character in such figures, rather than the torso bits.

    And yet another reason that the "Death Fields Accessory Sprue 1" is an exciting idea, to me, as is WA's inclusion of so many head, weapons, and other bits options in the other kits: a little variation in weaponry, shields, heads, and other bits can go a long way toward giving a given army a distinctive look!

    So hopefully there will be things like multiple e.g. Dwarf Accessory Sprues.

    Dwarves in generic costumes with soft hats, and miscellaneous weapons, including improvised items like shovels, mining picks, torches, and clubs?  You've got a Dwarf militia or mob!  (Or maybe they're peaceful civilian townsfolk, doing a job, if you're making a diorama or need non-combatant NPCs for a role-playing game., or maybe they're camp followers and engineers for a tabletop wargame...)

    Dwarves in same generic costumes, with similar shields, helmets, hammers (or whatever), spears, and bows (guns, whatever)?  You've got a Dwarf regiment.  If you make multiple styles of these more or less uniform army items, and you get different Dwarf factions/nations!  (Good vs. Evil, Law vs. Chaos, hill dwarf woodsmen vs. deep dwarf miners, whatever....)

    Dwarves in same costumes, holding smoking pipes, tankards of ale, legs of mutton, fiddles, and the like?  You've got a Dwarf party!   (Or, bits to add some character to your dwarf army, militia, mob, diorama, whatever....)


  • What kind of dwarfs aren't currently available in plastic?  What is WGA already doing a set or two of?  Landsneckt style dwarfs.  (Makes the old Warhammer Fantasy Empire players nostalgia too.)

  • While I am not after Landsknecht Dwarves myself, I can see them doing as well as Landsknecht Ogres.

  • I don't really see the point of doing Landsknecht anything after the ogres besides maybe actual historical Landsknechts since there is too much of a good thing, plus it’s not really that versatile of a theme.

  • Perry I believe makes a couple of historical Landsknecht kits. A bit smaller than the GW Empire Fantasy Landsknechts if my memory serves. 

    Archon Studios has a bunch of plastic Fantasy Landsknecht sculpts coming from their Dungeons and Lasers 3 Kickstarter.

  • Actually the Perry kits is genric mercs for the Itailian Wars and the WOR (more English, Itailian, and Swiss than Landsknecht), but they mix well with the Warlord Landsknecht kits.  As a theme for fantasy, I feel its a little overplayed thanks to GW.

    Back to the topic what about a dwarven adventurers and spell casters?

  • Ah yes, I stand corrected... it is Warlord Games rather than Perry that make those three Landsknecht kits. I thought they were Perry because they are less “heroic” than many of my other Warlord Games miniatures. 

    I suspect there is room for more Dwarven adventurers of every sort,  including the magical type. The question is, which aesthetic? A new one which may have to stand on its own or one to match the look of other companies to help support those lines?

    The various Dwarf kits from North Star for Oathmark are pretty good for a Tolkien look, which to be fair has me pretty well covered but others may prefer something else... or just more of something similar but different.

    It was interesting seeing feedback from backers on the Fireforge Dwarf Kickstarter where not everyone was happy with the aesthetic Fireforge went with, particularly the shields.

  • Same here, really:  the Oathmark Dwarves are fantastic, especially the light infantry.  The Oathmark Elven light infantry is great stuff as well.  For a "generic" Tolkien style, that's really more my taste than most anything else out there, for rank-and-file dwarves and elves, aside from individual Reaper figures, which I think currently mostly work best as "hero" figures, leaders, and that sort of thing, if you're going for tabletop wargaming armies or large skirmish warbands, or large groups of NPCs.

    Multi-part dwarf adventurers and spellcasters sound like a fantastic idea to me, I'd love to see a dedicated kit like that, but it kind of seems like the only examples I know of on the market have been for humans (in general, the Frostgrave stuff!)

    An accessory sprue of Dwarven adventurer and spellcaster accessories would make me happy - stuff like dwarven arms holding smoking pipes, tankards of ale, legs of mutton, fiddles-and-bows, clubs, daggers, and the like, in addition to a small selection of the usual maps, holy symbols, grimoires, staves, wands, backpacks, coils of rope, and other adventuring gear of the sort you would find in the Frostgrave kits. Add dwarfy heads wearing spectacles, eyepatches, odd hats, and the sort. Just kitbash them onto any Wargames Atlantic dwarf set, or onto the other guys' dwarves, and bang! Dwarf adventurers, rogues, bards, priests, conjurers, and whatever else you can imagine.  Hand-swaps with stuff from other kits can go a long way toward customizing a generic dwarf army set, too.  The best results, I think, would be with bodies without the standard-issue chainmail and plate armor that dwarf minis are usually supplied with, though (maybe a job again for those Oathmark light infantry dwarves?)

    For me, "Dwarf Adenturers" always brings these guys from Time Bandits (1981) to mind, and it's always a bit sad to me that nobody ever makes any dwarf adventurers quite like them - the eccentric costumes were brilliant (I especially like the pilot's cap!):




  • Spot on with the Time Bandits aesthetic.... I love that.

  • I am still quite a devoted fan of Perrys' 80s/90s Citadel dwarves. Liked the style, the mix of various stereotypes (Dwarves with Norse or Normand helms, and more Renaissance ones for example) and the very WH3rd concept of Empire Dwarves vs Imperial ones.

    Later, when GW turned them to some "Tolkien combined with Norses and Gallics", I was quite disappointed -even if back then I had already quit the Hobby. Call it "nostalgia" but to my mind, the Perry style is still the best around.... and I am going to be more inclined to buy models from:


    or https://bitsofwar.com/163-hospodars-dwarven-boyars

    I really do enjoy the medieval slavic look of the latter. 

  • @Yronimos Whateley

    For me, "Dwarf Adenturers" always brings these guys from Time Bandits (1981) to mind, and it's always a bit sad to me that nobody ever makes any dwarf adventurers quite like them - the eccentric costumes were brilliant (I especially like the pilot's cap!):

    funny you should mention that..

  • personally, i'd love to see something akin to the West Wind Production metals, but in plastic. Roman legion dwarfs, Selucid pikemen dwarfs, assyrian dwarfs, etc.


    or maybe desert dwarfs with arab/beduin influences. something that would be visually neat but filling a niche no one else is doing yet.

  • @Steven StGeorges 

    Those are two great lines!  I might have to get some of those Mom Miniatures.  Thanks!

  • @JTam  

    Always a pleasure JT. MOM models have quite a  lovely WFB 3rd flavour.. especially Clan warriors and scouts. 

    Bitsofwar slavic are quite an oddity... and could be added to a kislevite army without any problem.. depicting some survivors/refugees of Karak Vlag for example. 

  • @Mithril2098 actually desert theme arab/beduin influences or Turkish Ottoman dwarfs would work great and actually be a buy for me in plastic, most people are going to want some sort of gun option with their dwarfs though which is why roman,etc. are not exactly on my radar. The reason I suggested the horn helmets etc. though is because that is closer to typical classic fantasy dwarfs at this point.

  • I had a grouping of "a little different" ideas for classic fantasy creatures I was working on at one stage, and the dwarves featured. I wanted to see them fill a more early 1800's Western European Naval look, think a Dwarf version of these guys, especially the 2nd from right


    this went alongside Age of Piracy Lizardmen, Barbary Pirate Evil Elves and East India company Amphibians

  • I think if you stray too far away from traditional viking-style dwarves then they're not really dwarves any longer, and they become "what if X-but short?", which is gimmicky and likely to appeal to only a very niche audience. 

    I'm pretty sure napoleonic dwarves have been done before, for example, but you've probably never seen one in person, because they're not really dwarves, they're napoleonics, but shorter, and don't fit in with any existing rules for dwarves, or into the background of any armies contemporary to the setting into which they've been injected, so why would anyone buy them except for stool and joculation? 

    If you'd like a setting into which dwarves could probably be injected without straying too far from the archetype, and therefore being able to represent traditional dwarf armies in other games, while not being completely unjustifiable in the epoch of their adoptive setting, then I would suggest the wild west. It's a fairly easy transition from mining beneath the mountains of the realm of mists to prospecting in the badlands of the new world. Pickaxes, candles and lanterns are still in, as is gun-powder. Steam-power is often seen in the more high-fantasy interpretations of dwarves, which fits right in with the age of the steam engine. Muskets and flintlock pistols become Winchesters and six-shooters. Armour and shields are a harder sell in such a setting, especially the heavier variants, but we can lean on some pop-culture tropes, like the furnace door from Fist Full of Dollars (and subsequently Back to the Future III) and have the armour take on a patch-work, riveted together appearance; well-made, but more utilitarian, as if forged just in time, rather than just in case. Berserkers/Slayers could call upon Amerindian motifs, being dwarves who have "gone-native" (I think that's what the colonials call it) wearing a similar garb of a loincloth and ceremonial body and face paint to existing Berserkers. Artillery is still largely the same, cannons, but with some period pieces like gatling guns replacing grape-shot and the like. 

    As close as this concept would be to existing dwarf armies I still think re-skinning them with 10-gallon hats and cartridge weapons might be too much of a departure from the norm to be economically viable. 

  • @Stephen Sutton I agree with you. Which is probably why I don't generally get excited about dwarves. Either they look like dwarves and there are already a ton of them out there... or they don't look like dwarves and only appeal to a small fraction of people. 

    I do look GW's Kharodran overlords... but I am sure not everyone does... I mostly didn't get them because they are so expensive.



  • @William Redford 

    Try any second-hand websites -depending where do you live.  I managed to buy a couple of Kharodran Arkanaut Ironclad NOS for 80$CAN each instead of 160 each but they are now gathering dust somewhere. I really do enjoy the KOs as a concept, but not the models -excepted the Admiral, too much AOS. 

    Forget to mention Avatars of War plastic regiments  .. another spanish manufacturer, its ranges are looking like GW Middlehammer models


  • @Stephen Sutton @William Redford@Steven StGeorges

    Guys I disagree with you since elves and dwarves can and often are inserted everywhere in D&D and elsewhere. What’s more you find “Dwarf like” myths in places as far a field as Japan, JAPAN! (ie Dwarves don't need to be Vikings or any other identifiable human culture).

    As long as they are short breaded dudes that have axes, bad tempers and bad  drinking habits, they are dwarves and frankly I don’t know about you guys, but I find the straight Norse Dwarf thing to be boring as spit mini wise at this point.

     Plus given that the swamp dwelling lizardmen are in fact armed with percussion caps muskets that are not exactly a common thing till the Crimean War, I don’t really buy full on chainmail wearing Viking style Norse dwarves being a logical if this is a united setting we are talking about, tbh dwarves dressed like this armed with wildwesty lever-action axe guns would make more sense than squat Vikings given that little detail:

    Or even early WW2 Gemans like they where done as in Panzerfäuste


    And even if they are Vikingish I would expect them (and while we are at it the other civilized races) to at least have something like one of these as their common main firearm option (and YES the civilized races should all have firearm options):

    Since we are talking dwarves likely axeifed like so:


    In any case, unless we are talking shirtless seekers/slayers I think the dwarves should err on the steampunky/magitech side, not as heavily as GW's AOS minis (a bit too heavy on the armor and details) but if we are not going to borrow from harder history persay, maybe something along the lines of Final Fantasy 4 where they were more along the lines of short engineers with horned helmets that live underground, have a strong attachment to the earth, and drive tanks:

  • @Brian Van De Walker All that sounds good. But, would wild west dwarves or Japanese Dwarves be attractive enough that people would buy them? Or buy them in the numbers that viking dwarves would be? Now i dont like that question, because people use it to justify female minis not being made. "Would people buy female soldiers in the number they would male soldiers?" I mean personally, I would like to see japanese dwarves, they are in the 3.5 D&D oriental adventures book, Korobukoru. 

    I think dwarves (more so than elves, or most monster races) are handicapped with people having an image of what a dwarf is... and when its not that... The new "Squats" from GW. Only one image has been released... and I have seen all kinds of people complaining that its not a dwarf or that it is a dwarf "cosplaying as a Tau" because its not in the old norse style clothes. But as i said, I am not really a dwarf guy so either way I wouldnt be the target audience here. 

  • I like my Dwarfs (with Warhammer Fantasy Dwarfs being my first ever miniature army and Middle-Earth Dwarves also having a big place in my heart, I would be a hypocrite not to say it), but I honestly think we're fine for plastic Dwarfs, what with GW producing some solid ranges of Middle-Earth Dwarves and bringing the Old World back (and still retaining their newest Warhammer Fantasy Dwarf models, plus the Fyreslayers and Kharadron), Mantic and their square-head variants for those of a different taste, Oathmark and their excellent Middle-Earth style models that work pretty well with GW's, and now most recently Fireforge's plastic range arriving for Pre-Order. And that's just fantasy Dwarfs - WA have already impressed us with their sci-fi midget Vikings, and that move has now encouraged GW to bring Squats out of mothballs for good.

    The only way another set of Dwarfs would grab my attention would be if, as @Mithril2098 says, WA gave them a really different and new aesthetic - a period of Ancient History that has never been Dwarfified before, or one that has only been done in metal like those catered for by West Wind.

    I definitely wouldn't want them to be Landsknechts, WA fans have already decided on Landsknecht Ogres (how on Earth they reached #1 in the polls is still beyond me) and Fireforge's Dwarves have some Empire-style heads and weapon options anyway for those who want to make Imperial Dwarfs (heresy in my humble opinion - Dawi don't need umgi to survive!). 

    Now what I would like to see is some of their smaller cousins - Gnomes. Warhammer Fantasy 3rd Edition introduced Gnomes as a 'sibling race' of the Dwarfs, and it'd be fun to see them make an appearance in WA's fantasy world, especially with their own unique units, perhaps an artillery piece, perhaps a monster. @Grumpy Gnome as a Gnome yourself I'm counting on you to back me up here 😉

  • @Caratacus Now gnomes would be fun. But they would have to be distinct enough from dwarves as well as WA and Mantic's Halflings. You should start another thread with your ideas for gnomes. Maybe make a poll as to what era (historical inspiration) people would like for gnomes. 

  • @Caratacus Oh, and I voted for Landsknecht ogres. As to why? The idea does seem absurd, but I remember the old GW empire army book had an option for Ogres. The thought of brutish ogres serving in a a structured army under some minor lord is strangely appealing. They will definitely have a place in my Conquistador army. Well, depending on how they turn out. I am not really worried though as WA hasnt let me down yet. 

  • @William Redford It'll be easy enough to make Gnomes distinct from Halflings (beards and normal sized, booted feet rather than pudgy round faces and unshod Hobbit feet), Dwarves less so, but pointed hats and beards (as opposed to helmets and big bushy Viking beards) are a step in the right direction. 

    You're right, though, it's definitely worth me setting up a separate Gnome thread, with a poll as to which era would be best for them. I'll look into doing that now.

  • Japanese Dwarf? Like that one taken from DakkaDakka forum

    I think Citadel released a Ninja Dwarf too... 

    Could be interested in a Japanse Dwarf army... 

    @William Redford 

    But Old sculpts-like (Jess Goodwin OR Nick Lund's Chronicles models of old), or the later one from Warhammer Quest: Cursed City. I totally dislike the way GW Ogres looks like nowadays. 


    People over the Oldhammer Blogosphere are using old Ral Partha Dwarves to depict Gnomes.. Citadel never really developed that race and back to the 2nd/3rd Gnomes were relocated to Albion -a shame to my mind.

    SpeelCrow released a box with 6 or 8 models as far as I remember.. 

  • @Steven StGeorges The GW mongol ogres... I actually like them... I know, I know... I am not sure why i like them, but I do... :(

  • @William Redford 

    No trouble about Mr Redford. They are awesome sculpts when compared to old C Series or N14 Ogres. The Mongol look was already part of the latter by the way, mixed with some Neolithic flavour:

    But the Cult of the Potbelly.. wasn't my stuff at all. 

  • .. and speaking of Gnomes, just pay a visit to Old School Miniatures and be amazed:


    Oh and check their Chaos Dwarves range... so funky and groovy



  • @Steven StGeorges those alpine gnomes are interesting. Undead gnomes too. :)

  • The balancing act is that the dwarves would need to be unique enough that it would give people a reason to buy them over whatever is already available, and be something that people would buy.  Dwarves are my favorite fantasy race hands-down, and I think the "archetypal fantasy dwarf" market is kinda saturated; WGA would have to do something to set their fantasy dwarves apart from the crowd, at least aesthetically.

    My favorite non-traditional dwarves of all time are Privateer Press' Rhulics.  I think they struck a great balance between the traditional "short, surly, stoic" archetypes, and less-traditional ideas and aesthetics.  Instead of Scottish or Viking influence, they had WWI American/British:

    and WWII German Afrika Korps-style gear:


    with a smattering of other stuff; one warcaster almost looks like he's wearing an old-school diving suit:

    You'll also notice that there are almost no beards on these guys, something almost sacrilegious for dwarves, but it works for them.

    The other thing is that I think people do kinda expect fantasy races to play to type.  Plenty of non-traditional ideas have been done for all the Tolkien/D&D/GW races, but those seem to fade pretty quick and folks revert to the norm.  Changing up the visual  aesthetics, while sticking to the idea that dwarves short, stout, hard-hitting, punch-taking hard asses would be the way to go in my eyes.

    Personally, I don't know how "different" I would wander when looking to buy medieval-fantasy dwarves.  I love the traditional style, so that's what I still gravitate toward.  Maybe different armor styles, influenced by other cultures, but nothing too different; I wouldn't buy ancient Greek or Aztec dwarves, personally.

    If WGA were to do dwarves for their Classic Fantasy line, I think the Lizardman/spider idea would be a good way to go: a box that contains a mix of genres, rather than straight, by-the-book fantasy.

  • @Caratacus ... :( we were promised a gnome thread... I see no gnome thread! you tease! 

  • @Benjamin Hayward 

    As a matter of facts, I do like the WFB 2nd Dwarves because they were supposed to be quite a motley race depending of the human civilization they lived close to. So:

    • Karak Vlag should have been slavic -like the Kromlech range
    • Karak Drak should have reproduced the Norse/Viking stereotype and the sole army with Berserkers -the ancestors of Slayers- fighting alongside units of Shieldmaidens.
    • Karaks from the Grey Mountains and The Vaults were supposed to reproduce a Bretonnia, a Tilea or an Empire look -so Arthurian, Renaissance and Neo Renaissance look
    • Karaks from the WorldEdge Moutains were composed of Imperial Dwarves (so late Medieval Ages/Renaissance style) and Common Dwarves (your regular Medieval Dwarf), those were the most common in GW ranges.
    • Chaos Dwarves were not summerian-like but exiled (corrupted) dwarves from existing Karak or workshipper from Karak Vlag -before King's Gotrek & Felix series.

    When the 3rd came, only 3 types of Dwarf survived (Norse, Imperial and Empire), with the addition of Gnomish allies (a sole regiment of about 50 models).. Shieldmaiden disappeared, while Bersekers turned into Slayers (Troll and Giant only) then zip, nada.

    I do still enjoy the Traditionnal style and thanks to Avatars of War and MOM miniaturas, those ranges do satisfy my needs. Japanese / Chinese Dwarves could be a very nice idea, so I do support your idea of a Swiss army knife box.. to be used alongside DF Einherjars for instance. 

  • Oh and I do enjoy some Weird West dwarf... Reaper produced one model I am using with very light conversion in my neo W40K setting.. the famed Olav Gunderson Dwarf Gambler

  • @Benjamin Hayward I agree they should be done with cross genre gaming mind, I also feel the same way about the other classic races (ie the WFB/LOTR races) particularly since blackpowder fantasy setting games keep getting made, though they don't need to do SciFi bits as much (deathfields has that covered). That said the other thing WA could do (which I have mixed feelings about) is just do a fantasy upgrade sprue for their  Space dwarves.

    That aside, and you should take note of this as well @William Redford, my last suggestion, the tank driving magi tech engineer dwarves like in FF4 actually has staying power as they are a trope in videogames and comicbooks (both here in the states and abroad) that has been around for several decades now and they are pretty far removed from LOTR dwarves, the only things they really have in common is being short, mining, metal working, love of axes and heavy drinking (as long as you keep those character traits in mind and maybe stick with horned helmets for headgear you can pretty much do what you want with dwarves and people will go with it).   

     Likewise fantasy races having  “default images” and  “other renditions of them not having staying power” are simply false to fact statements and I say this because:

    A: WH40k exists (mostly the elder but even the orks are pretty different from there "classic fantasy" race counterparts in WFB at least with regards to cultural influences on the clothing and weapons, the only thing they really share is dominate character traits in the fluff).

    B: Pretty much every rendition of elves I have seen has been different except maybe for the idea of living in the woods, being archers, having pointy ears and being ageless and I have seen those attributes thrown out the window quite a bit except for the pointy ears (I am not talking just war gaming, but in general with pathfinder, D&D, and lazy fantasy writers often using them as alternatives to exotic real world human cultures half the time).

    C: Everyone has their own idea of what a “generic elf” dresses and looks like*.  I found this out on the now defunct Wargames Factory forum when we discussed elves and no two people could agree on what they looked like for a long time**, eventually 3 of us decided they should dress as Joseon Koreans “because that’s more fun” and brow beat the rest😆, (read B again).

    D: B and C are pretty much true of every other classic fantasy race I have come across, ie they change from franchise to franchise often alongside the humans in that setting (meaning they stick around as long as the franchise keeps going), though generally it’s not as drastic as the elves except maybe the beastmen which vary from wild bipedal goats with hands to civilized humans with cat ears, and the dragons which vary from man eating monsters to a long lived transforming race that interbreeds with humans.

    E: WFB Dwarves are actually Scottish and the slayer dwarves are more Celtic wode warrior than Norse berserker, and then there are the Chaos Dwarves that keep getting remade, clearly have a following  and have no norse themes at all.🤣


    *(yeah when/if we have an elf thread you guys will all know the true horror of Hugo Weaving+cat hybrid elf mini suggestions)

    **(also this why I hate the word "generic" with regards to fantasy races and subjects😤, there are no “generic classic” versions guys! Get that idea out of your head right now, it’s a lie from the pit!🤣)

  • @Brian Van De Walker 

    The only non traditional dwarves I ever really liked were the Gully dwarves from Dragon Lance... but like I said, I'm not really passionate on the subject.


    Now elves.., I would argue that 40k elves are almost a direct transfer from the warhammer fantasy elves of old. Tell, graceful, immaculate armor, the average citizen trains for war. Though not all have a lifelong role in war. They have superior technology (or magic). They are a long lived race so have much knowledge but as a result an equal amount of arrogance. There is a dark elf faction of evil, or at least politically opposed elves... even and elder guardian helmet kind of looks like a high elf pointy helm... 

    But, I will agree thst unlike dwarves, elves have less of one image in peoples minds  

    in D&D 3rd edition for example, there was something like 23 subraces for elves. The sun elves, the moon elves, wood elves and strangely wild elves thst are different than wood elves, sea elves, desert elves, the avariel, etc, etc...  I liked the elves in hell boy 2, and they were kind of a mix between fae elves and d&d high elves... because of this I find porting elves to other cultures or concepts easier. This doesn't even count the long ear anime elves or video game rlves like Link from legend of Zelda. Wargames Atlantic had shown some elf concepts but put thEm aside because Oathmark released their elves and they were too similar. But yeah, I have more of an opinion on elves than I do dwarves, so will happily discuss them when an elf thread starts and we start in in them. 

    edit: type from my phone do sorry for spelling and what not... fat fingers and small keys...

  • @William Redford Bro, I own examples of both and the 40k elves are very clearly space Japanese (they have Katanas, nagitanas, shurikan gun and samurai flags, not to mention the body hugging armor), and beyond the pointy helmets they are nothing like the WFB of old which are a composite of Normans, Greeks and maybe three kingdoms Korean as far costume influences (they wear heavy chainmail and long robes and use double edged swords) which is what we are arguing about ultimately, not their character traits which are indeed the same. 

  • @Brian Van De Walker style wise, sure. I would still argue they are more similar than not, even down to the aspect warrior training camps vs the elves units (lion, Phoenix, etc) but again that is more fluff than substance which is what you had been saying anyway. So yeah a shuriken catapult is not a long bow. 

    Edit: and then there are the new cow elves... which are... not as similar...

  • @William Redford 


    @Grumpy Gnome I think you'll like this too

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