Tuesday, 13 March 2012

WOTR: Battle Report - Misty Mountains v Dwarves

                 - Gimli, Son of Gloin, The Fellowship of the Ring


Initially I was planning to fight against Craig and I wanted to try my WotR Dwarf army again - I have battled with them on numerous occasions before and have had some good battles (which I have always won with the dwarves) and enjoyed using them to great effect. I now have 3 full companies of Dwarf Vault Wardens and wanted to field them, so I came up with the following WotR battlehosts/armies:

Dwarf Army Circa 1750
Moria Goblin Army Circa 1750 
Epic Hero
Gimli, Son of Gloin

4 x Comp of Dwarf Shield Kinband with captain
4 x Comp of Dwarf Shield Kinband with captain
4 x Comp of 2HW Dwarf Kinband with captain
3 x Comp of Dwarf Archer Kinband
3 x Comp of Dwarf Archer Kinband

4 x Comp of Dwarf Khazad Guard
2 x Dwarf Ballista
3 x Dwarf Vault Wardens
1 x Dwarf hero - Kings Champion

4 x Comp of Drar’s Hunters (Dwarf Ranger Kinband)

Epic Hero
Durburz, Goblin King of Moria
Druzhag the Beast Caller

6 x Moria warband with Moria Goblin Drum
4 x Moria warband with shields 
      Moria Goblin Captain
2 x Moria Goblins with bows 
      Moria Goblin Shaman
2 x Moria Goblins with bows
      Moria Goblin Shaman
2 x Moria Goblins with bows 
6 x Wild Warg with Misty Mountains
     Wild Warg Chieftan

5 x Moria Cave Trolls
Dragon of Ancient times

WotR Dwarf Khazad Guard

Unfortunately Craig wanted to play Games Workshops Bloodbowl, but fortunately I managed to find a new opponent, Charlie (an avid Warhammer 40k tournament player) who was interested in Lord of the Rings and wanted to play War of the Rings.

This is why I settle on the 1000 point army list for the intro game… Although, with hindsight, I should have listed smaller armies list, around the 500 - 750 point range just for speed.

We played on the East Grinstead War Gamers club ‘snow’ battle board which is perfect for Moria / Misty mountains battles. And placed two small hills in the corner and trees at each end, the idea was to keep the terrain to a minimal level and allow the Misty Mountains wild warg freedom to charge around the field; with a glacier in the middle of the field - the ice on the Glacier was agreed to be difficult terrain, the broken ice, impassable.

Moria / Misty Mountains Army 1055 points (Charlie)

WotR Misty Mountains Goblin Army
I chose the army below for Charlie as it had a variety of units, magic, cavalry and hero’s with might to help Charlie play and work through the WotR rules so that he could learn the variety of rules that make up WotR. 

I ran through the basic rules first and then step by step explained the rules as we were playing.

Epic Hero
Durburz, Goblin King of Moria
Druzhag the Beast Caller

6 x Moria warband with Moria Goblin Drum
4 x Moria warband with shields - Moria Goblin Captain
LotR Moria Goblin Archers
2 x Moria Goblins with bows with Moria Goblin Shaman
2 x Moria Goblins with bows with Moria Goblin Shaman
2 x Moria Goblins with bows 
6 x Wild Warg with Wild Warg Chieftan

2 Cave Trolls

Dwarf Army 980 points (Me)

WotR Gimli & Dwarf Army
Epic Hero
Gimli, Son of Gloin

4 x Comp of Dwarf Shield Kinband with captain
4 x Comp of Dwarf Shield Kinband with captain
4 x Comp of 2HW Dwarf Kinband with captain

3 x Comp of Dwarf Khazad Guard


LotR Dwarf Warrior Line

As this was a LotR introduction game to WotR we just lined our forces up at each end of the battle field.
I was to the south and placed Gimli with the Khazad Guard and then spread my army out across the board, dwarf warriors with shields, then dwarf warriors with two handed weapons followed by the last dwarf warriors with shields.

Charlie’s army was deployed to the north and placed two formations of Moria goblin archers next to a cave troll, with the Moria goblins with shields in the centre of the field with Durburz the King of Moria, behind them the Moria goblins with Druzhag the beast caller and Moria Goblin drums. On the left of Charlie’s flank were the wild wargs with the chieftain and a cave troll.

Round 1

Charlie won priority for his Misty Mountians / Moria army.


WotR Moria Army advances
LotR Misty Mountains

The wild warg and their warg chieftain wasted no time and sprang forward pouncing towards the dwarf lines, passing their at the double (ATD) roll they shot forward nearly 20 inches! 

The Moria archers moved toward the glacier and the rest of the Goblin army advance towards the middle of the field, avoiding the icy ledge.

LotR Moria Cave Troll
LotR Dwarf Khazad Guard Army

My dwarves held their ground, without priority there was no way I was going anywhere near the wild warg charging distance, I know how effective they can be if they get the charge. 

I did move the Khazad Guard forward slightly and changed their layout so that they were two wide and angled towards the advancing Misty Mountains army.

That ended the first round.

Round 2

My Dwarf army won priority


WotR Dwarf and Moria Armies
LotR Dwarf Shield Warriors

I wanted to seize the opportunity to catch the wild warg unawares and so moved Gimli and the Khazad Guard ATD to the edge of ice, ready to face the flank of the Moria Goblins.  

The dwarves on the right flank ran forward ATD to face the wild warg head on. The centre of my dwarf army advanced across the field to cover my flank, but I was conscious not to get too close to be engaged by the slower advancing Moria Goblin horde.

LotR Wild Warg and Warg Chieftain
LotR Moria Goblins Shields

Charlie wasted no time and moved his goblins forward, many ATD, his archers came into range, as did both his shaman.  The result was 2 x fire bolts from his goblin spell casters at the Khazad guard, and some excellent dice results two 6’s for the effect and 7 dead Khazad Guard dwarves - ouch!

WotR Dwarf Khazad Guard
LotR Dwarf Khazad Guard

Next Durburz, Goblin King of Moria’s formation moved forward in close range of my dwarf 2HW warriors in the centre, Druzhag was too far to cast fire bolt on the dwarf formation, and didn’t have line of sight.


With no shooting in my dwarf army I passed this stage and as Charlie had moved his army full range and so had no shooting either.


LotR Dwarf Shield Warriors

I declared my charge with my dwarf shields warriors on the right hand flank against the wild warg, Charlie clearly had been listening and his wild warg chieftain declared a heroic charge, not wanting to be charged by the wild warg cavalry, I also had to call a heroic charge as I did NOT want to be charged by the wild warg, this resulted in a roll off…

…4! good win the roll, phew! And fortunately my dwarf warriors made the charge against the warg.

WotR Dwarf Shield Warriors

Next I charged the dwarf 2HW warriors straight at the goblin shields, but disaster, I rolled a ‘1’ failed charge.  I had to use a might point to ensure that the charge was made (I know the picture shows that I had a banner bearer, I just love the figures and think they look good so did not pay nor use them as banner bearers).

My plan was done - ensure that my dwarves got the charge and hammer the goblins and wild wargs to dust…


LotR Dwarf 2HW Warriors

The Wild warg (as cavalry) strike first, but they simply could not penetrate the dwarven shields and the defense 8, the dwarves with the charge bonus on the other hand gave the wild warg a bloody nose killing 4 of them.

In the centre the dwarves with 2HW and the charge bonus killed ½ the formation of the goblins 17 dead, for only 2 dwarves - fantastic result for the dwarves, but I kind of felt guilty for Charlie as it was his first game. 

Charlie passed his panic tests.

Round 3

My Dwarf army won a timely priority again


WotR Dwarf v Wild Warg

I couldn’t move my dwarf army much this turn. At the front my army was pretty much engaged in battle, I had 4 companies of dwarves with 2HW in reserve and so the only move for me was to move the Khazad Guard over slightly to try to get them into the fight. Gimli moved from the Khazad Guard to the Dwarf 2HW formation in front of Durburz, Goblin King of Moria - he was clearly eying his prey.

Charlie in reply edged his goblin bows forward to the edge of the ice glacier. Then both of his Moria shaman cast fire bolt at the vulnerable Khazad Guard, this time killing 5 Khazad guard (I was now worried that they would all be incinerated before they could actually fight!). 

Druzhag the Beast Caller’s formation ATD onto the ice as did a cave troll. The bows at the rear of the battle ATD forward to get into the fight/bow range.


My Epic hero Gimli, now within spitting distance of Durburz the Goblin King of Moria and his shielded goblins was hurled into their ranks shouting "BARUK KHAZAD!", and managed to kill 3 goblins in the process.

The goblin bows that could see the Khazad Guard loosed a volley at them at full range and peppered the ground with black arrows, but none of the Khazad Guard fell.


WotR Dwarf 2HW v Goblin Shields

I was about to charge Gimli straight into Durburz, but had to sigh when Charlie called a heroic charge, that meant that I had to call one too. This resulted in a roll off, I roll a 6 - good win the charge, again I sighed in relief. Gimli’s formation of dwarf warriors made the charge and spread out to 3 companies from the spearhead at the front to maximise the possible damage on the goblins.

Next the dwarf shields spread out to three at the front and charged the wild warg chieftain and his band of howling wolves.


WotR Dwarf Shield victory

Having won priority I decided the battle order, Gimli called Epic Strike and raised his fight to 10, then called heroic duel. Gimli and the Durburz rolled for the duel… Gimli was never going to loose on fight 10 + 1 for calling the duel and managed to secure 5 rolls on the duel table.

Some poor rolling from me meant that Gimli could only kill 6 goblin warriors, but did manage to kill Durburz the Goblin King of Moria, I guess it’s the luck of the dice and I did get to kill Durburz in a duel.

In the proceeding fight more goblins died along with 6 dwarves, leaving only 9 goblins to hold the centre of the battle field, for now!

LotR Dwarf hold the centre

Next was the wild warg v dwarf shields - to my amazement, no dwarves were killed; having the charge bonus again I went on the rampage and completely annihilated the wargs, every last one gone… now that was some serious rolling… how many 6’s!

As Charlie lost, he rolled on the panic table for the goblins, but rolled a 6 and remained steadfast.

Things were starting to look good for the dwarves and I was quietly confident of a win.

Round 4

Dwarves win priority


WotR Dwarf Shields charge Cave Troll

I condensed the dwarf shield line to create some space to move my dwarf army over slightly and advanced towards the cave troll (after all only one company can fight him at a time).
Next I condensed the dwarf 2HW to try to get the spare shielded dwarves who were still in reserve into the fight, but the gap wasn’t quite big enough and they couldn’t get through.

The Khazad Guard, sensing their time was up edged sideways to lure Druzhag in to charge and allow my spare dwarf shields a flanking attack, and to also try to get out of the bow range (fortunately, the shaman’s view was blocked by Druzhag’s formation of goblins).
WotR Dwarf Warrior Line Holds

Charlie moved Druzhag and the Moria spears forward across the ice, having to move half distance on the difficult terrain.  His cave troll and archers, who were behind the wild warg now turn and face the Dwarf shields in front of them and spread out to increase the frontage of the formation.

Druzhag then cast a spell on the Khazad Guard halving their movement, fortunately he failed his second spell.

LotR Dwarf Shield Spare Advance


Again my hero Gimli, was used to complete another "BARUK KHAZAD", killing another goblin, not much but ‘every little helps!’

The goblins shot everything they could at my dwarves, but only manage to kill one dwarf with a shield (and that was a lucky shot), despite handfuls of dice being rolled on the board.


My dwarf 2HW warriors charged the last few goblins with shields in the centre of the battle and my Warg-slaying dwarves charged the cave troll, no other units on either side were in charging range.


The first bought was between the Cave troll and my dwarf shields. The troll tried, but failed to kill any dwarves, the shields were simply proving too hard to get through - even for trolls. Needless to say, the troll died at the hands of the warg-slayering dwarf warriors.

The remaining goblin shields crumbled under the pressure of the dwarf formation and are all slain, they did manage to kill 3 dwarves in their final stand.

Round 5

Goblins win priority.


WotR Goblins trapped

Charlie took the bait and ATD’d straight at the Khazad Guard, casting a spell on his own formation to re-roll failed hits and a fire bolt for good measure, which for once didn’t kill any Khazad Guard.

I put into practice my previously disclosed plan; my Khazad guard fell back to lure Druzhag’s formation of goblins into my trap… my spare dwarf shields held the ground in the centre, if Charlie charged, his flank will be in view of my spare dwarf shield warriors.

WotR Dwarf Shield Warriors

Next having smashed the right flank of the Misty Mountains army, I immediately advanced the troll-warg-slayering dwarf warriors towards the goblin archers, who look stricken and very alone. Charlie casts shatter shields on them and scored a 6, destroying them for the match, but I used my shield bearers last might point to roll to use ‘will of iron’ and countered the spell, fortunately this saved my shields from smashing to pieces.


The majority of the Moria goblins were out of range for both spells and arrows, perhaps Charlies should have brought them all forward slowly but steadily, I guess the goblins were scared of the ice. 

The stricken goblins that were in range opened fire on the troll-warg-slayering dwarves, but the limited and poor firing power of Goblins meant that no dwarves were injured.

LotR Dwarf Shields Flank Goblins

Charlie, as expected charged the Khazad Guard, now the Khazad Guard would have to earn their money. In return, I charged the spare dwarf shields into the flank of the charging Goblin spears thus reducing the number of attacks on my my Khazad Guard.

My troll-warg-slaying dwarves charged the goblin bows, 3 companies abreast (be afraid, be very afraid)!

LotR Goblins Take Heavy Casualties

First Druzhag’s formation of goblins rolled and directed all their attacks onto my Khazad Guard, clearly intent on killing them off, but to my amazement and delight the guard held and only 1 of them died.  In reply, the Khazad Guard and spare dwarf shields killed 17 goblins, a clear win for the Dwarves.

WotR Dwarf Shield Charge Bows
Next the troll-warg-slayers fought the goblin archers, the result was much the same as above, all the goblins were wiped out for no dwarf casualties… now I am loving the dwarves especially my troll-warg-goblin-slayers.

Round 6 (final round)

My Dwarf army wins priority.


I moved my Khazad Guard over and condensed them to cut the number of attacks from the goblin spears.

My shields held in the centre covering the flank, while the dwarf 2HW advanced to face the final troll who was coming in across the glacier.
LotR Khazad Guard, move back
WotR Dwarf Advance to Cave Troll
Charlie, ATD his goblin spears and out-flanked my Khazad Guard - I didn’t see that coming, and Druzhag again called to re-roll failed hits.
Despite the quick move of Druzhag, seeing that his army was broken and defeated, Charlie threw in the towel and conceded the game.

Dwarf Army Wins.

LotR Gimli, Son Gloin
Man of the match

Gimli, Son of Gloin.  He was able to jump around the battle field, and fight where he was needed with relative ease. He killed off Durburz the King of Moria as well as loads of Goblins, and COULD have done a lot more damage and even managed to hurle himself into the enemy shouting "BARUK KHAZAD", I am pleased with him so far - I will definitely use him again.

Final Thoughts

Do Dwarves need ballista’s and bows…?

I certainly didn’t need them and the Goblin bows were, lets face it next to useless against the high defense dwarf army (even without shields), although I have had the Goblin archers kill the Kings Champion before when I have fielded them, I guess it’s the luck of the dice. I would like to try Drar’s Hunter as the Dwarf Rangers look awesome and have slightly better bows than the dwarf short bows. 
LotR Dwarf Khazad Guard

I am also looking forward to fielding the dwarf vault wardens as I wanted to try them against the dragon, but by cutting the points for the match, I simply couldn’t justify them, maybe next time as I would like to do a Dragon slyers / hunters scenario with the dwarves.

Charlie picked the game up quickly, but I don’t think he was sold on it though. His army sped across the field at different speeds and that made it easier for me to pick them off.  The magic at the beginning was very good and I was worried that the Khazad Guard would end up Khazad Toast instead of actually fighting, but Charlie started to try out different spells and that stopped the death toll.

I was also surprised that Charlie didn’t create any spiders with Druzhag the Beast Caller as I did explain the rule and prompted him on several occasions, I believe that this could have greatly assisted the Goblins, as Misty Mountain spiders are good cavalry and if they were cast to the flank could have caused serious problems for me.

Hopefully Craig will be back to fight next time and he was interested to see the dwarf army win, as he had not been convinced by them, despite numerous attempts.  I love the dwarves and if they are played right are a very good, strong and solid army, yeah they move slowly, but as a shield wall they are perfect.  Lets just hope that this prompts more people to play

To see the full LotR / WotR Dwarf Army please visit this blog:

The LotR / WotR - Moria / Misty Mountains army please visit this blog:
We are about to start playing LOTR SBG - both skirmish battles and walk through the books/films each Monday night and WotR on club nights.

We welcome anyone interested in playing Lotr SBG, WotR or any warhammer/40K battle - why not let us know so that we can arrange some starter battles, like the one above, or if you/your club want to challenge us. We have all the LOTR SBG figures and LOTR scenery from the Mines of Moria to the siege of Helms Deep ready and waiting.  

Feel free to email us to come along or arrange a game.

East Grinstead War Gaming club

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