- "They wish to make the world a place of smoky darkness where hope and cheer are crimes punishable by immediate slavery and slow torture. Theirs is an endless greed that neither time nor wealth can ever abate. They committed blasphemy by turning away from the Ancestor Gods and practicing magic. Magic, I tell you! They are our greatest shame and they will be dealt with, in time."
- —Cranneg Enlagsson, Dwarf Lorekeeper.[3a]
The Chaos Dwarfs, also known as Black Dwarfs, Uzkul-Dhrazh-Zharr or the Dawi-Zharr, which means Fire-Dwarfs, are an industrious, dark-souled and merciless warrior race of Daemonsmiths, slavers and brutal killers that dominate the dark and cheerless landscape of the Dark Lands. At the centre of the Dark Lands lies a region filled with innumerable blackened factories, of hellish forges and massive armouries, a dark, heartless and nightmarish industrial empire the likes of which surpasses all others in the greater world. Long separated from their fading kin of the west, the Chaos Dwarfs have given themselves over to their dark master, and Chaos has worked subtle changes on their bodies.[2a]
They are the darkness and evil of the Dwarf race given form, slowly mutating even the notoriously resilient Dwarfen physiology, inflicting twisted terrors on their minds and souls so that they have become a spite-filled and calculatingly cruel reflection of what they once were. Unlike other Dwarfs, the Chaos Dwarf are deeply learned in the sorcerous arts, and have become obsessed with the control of hellish forces and the fires of the deep earth, combining the dark lore they have gleaned with an artisanship and skill for metalwork and industry undimmed from their ancient past.[2a]
They build the greatest and most infernal warmachines this world will ever know, hulking cannons the size of houses or shrieking rockets that could obliterate entire villages into ruins. From their massive mile-spanning hell-factories deep within the Dark Lands, shielded by deadly mountain ranges and set amid desolations of industrial waste and the haunts of monstrous beasts, the empire of the Chaos Dwarfs has faded into legend to many in the Old World, but those forced to confront their implacable black-iron clad armies and savage war engines know the truth. The day may yet come when the armies of dread Zharr-Naggrund march forth once more, bringing their infernal warmachines to sow misery and mayhem to all four corners of the world.[2a]
- 1 History
- 2 Biology
- 3 Government
- 4 Society
- 5 Military
- 6 Chaos Dwarf Holds
- 7 Notable Chaos Dwarfs
- 8 Sources
- "I’ll say this, and it will be the last I speak on this subject. The so-called Chaos Dwarfs are traitors. They betrayed our people and way of life. They are the walking dead just waiting for my axe to remind ‘em."
- —Korbad Grimaxe, Dwarf Explorer.[5a]
Many thousands of years ago the Dwarf race moved northwards from its ancestral home somewhere in the Southlands. They moved along the high ridge of mountains known as the Worlds Edge Mountains, following the trail of mineral ores and precious gems. The Dwarfs spread amongst the mountains, driven onwards by their lust for the secrets of rock and metal. Over a period of many hundreds of years they dug shafts and excavated cavernous underground cities, they sank mines deep into the mountain roots, and constructed tunnels which carried them further north. Eventually, sometime in the dim and distant past, the Dwarfs reached the upland region at the far north of the Worlds Edge Mountains which they called Zorn Uzkul or the Great Skull Land.[1a]
Here they found a vast and inhospitable plateau where the air was thin and cold and the rocks barren. Many turned back south to swell the growing numbers of Dwarfs in the Worlds Edge Mountains, others turned west into the cold lands of Norsca, but some of the most adventurous turned east and then south along the bleak Mountains of Mourn. At first, these widespread Dwarf kindred maintained contact with each other, but the eastern Dwarfs strayed far and when the Time of Chaos came the northern regions were cut off forever. The Dwarfs of the west believed their eastern kin dead, destroyed by the tides of Chaos that came from the north, but they were mistaken. Chaos did not kill the hardy Dwarfs, instead it worked a dreadful change upon them.[1a]
Father of Darkness
- "The Chaos Dwarfs are a great shame to our people. The signs were there for all to see, and yet we ignored them. We’re all Grungni’s, yes? Our blindness has led to the creation of an abomination in the east, one it would do well for us to end."
- —Hagrag, Dwarf Runesmith.[5a]
To survive the Realm of Chaos, the Chaos Dwarfs turned to the evil bull God, Hashut, whom they call the Father of Darkness. Hashut laid his “blessings” upon them and for the first time, magic users arose among the Dwarf race. The Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers now rule the rest of their people with absolute authority, for they are not only powerful mages, they are also the priesthood of Hashut. They are strange and tortured beings, greatly skilled at the blending of magic into their ingenious engineering, but cursed. Dwarfs were never meant to wield the magic of Chaos and the price they pay is the Curse of Stone.[3b]
Each Chaos Dwarf Sorcerer will, inevitably, one day slowly transform into an immobile stone statue. The change starts with their feet, which turn grey and useless, before progressing throughout the rest of their body. Many of them use their sorcerous engineering to construct new steam-driven bodies for a time, but they too eventually succumb to the curse. Their immobile forms now line the road leading to the centre of their mighty empire, the Tower of Zharr-Naggrund, City of Fire and Desolation.[3b]
The tower is a terrible obsidian ziggurat that constantly throbs with the pounding of hammers and the screams of victims sacrificed in molten cauldrons to Hashut’s greater glory. It is the labour of generations of slaves, surrounded by mountainous piles of displaced rock from the mines that gouge the landscape surrounding the tower and slag from the countless forges of the Chaos Dwarfs. At the apex of the tower sits a vast temple dedicated to Hashut, which is watched over by the fierce Bull Centaurs. Bull Centaurs long ago mutated from Chaos Dwarfs, doubtless after Hashut had an influence on the race. They have the lower bodies of bulls and the upper bodies of heavily muscled but fanged Chaos Dwarfs. They are fearless and terrible, revelling only in the spilling of blood and glorifying the Father of Darkness. From then on, the Chaos Dwarf Empire continues to grow stronger and stronger for centuries.[3b]
Black Orc Rebellion
For centuries, the Chaos Dwarfs ruled supreme over the Dark Lands, their furnaces and workshops ceaselessly churning out infernal warmachines by the dozens, each one destined to bring only woe and misery upon the wider world. Fueled by slaves, the Chaos Dwarfs were masters of their own dark, twisted world until the day came when the slaves rose up in rebellion and nearly spelt the doom of all their kind. During that forgotten age, the Chaos Dwarfs grew weary of the constant animosity and infighting of their Greenskin slaves, and so sought a solution that will make them much more obedient towards their tyrannical masters. With the aid of dark magic and the selection of the largest and strongest of their Greenskin slaves, they magically bred the first Black Orc into existence.[4a]
If this story were true, then their experiment turned into a complete catastrophe, for their ill-fated attempt to create a more disciplined and highly coordinated Greenskin slave-force only made them the perfect leaders for their brethren to rise up and topple their sadistic rule. The magical abilities of the Dwarf Sorcerors could never erase the strong sense of independence that all Orcs possess, and when the Greenskins rose up in rebellion, the great uprising that followed almost lead to the complete destruction of their entire empire, making it as far as the doors to the Temple of Hashut, the very dark heart of the Chaos Dwarf Empire. However, in their hour of triumph, only the timely betrayal of their Hobgoblin allies spared the Dwarfs from their complete and total annihilation.[4a]
- "The Dwarfs would have you believe that they are immune to the taint of Chaos, but it is not so. It is true that their hardy constitutions resist the effects of the warping longer than Humans and Mutants are fairly rare among them. However, those that fall go far indeed. Their Mutants often have skin that seems to be made of metal or stone. A number of them have the shape of centaurs, like the Centigors that run with the Beastmen hordes, only they have bodies that resemble stunted bulls. When I’ve tried to discuss this with Dwarfs, reassuring them that I only wish to help them stamp out the taint of Chaos among their people, their reactions have been somewhat... extreme. Several times, I was told my head would be parted from my shoulders if I ever brought up the subject again, which leads me to believe that there must be more to the story. It is a shame really, their taciturn nature prevents them from employing my expertise to their advantage."
- —Albrecht Kinear, Professor Emeritus at the University of Nuln.[3a]
Physically, Chaos Dwarfs resemble other Dwarfs, for all Dwarfs are resistant to the influence of magic and so Chaos has not warped them to the gross degree it has some other creatures. Apart from their long tusks they display few of the mutations that Chaos brings. Some develop bull-like features, even cloven hooves and occasionally horns. These mutations are rarely seen amongst Chaos Dwarf Warriors; it is Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers who are most likely to show the effects of magic.[3b]
Unlike other Dwarfs, the Chaos Dwarfs are extremely learned in magic. The Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers run the Tower of Zharr-Naggrund. They are the masters of their race, directing the labours of the slaves and the conquests of the armies. The Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers are also the high priests of the Chaos Dwarfs' god Hashut, the Father of Darkness, whose burning temple sits atop the mountainous city. The iron statue of Hashut is wrought in the form of a gigantic bull which glows red hot with the heat of the burning furnace within its metal belly. The Chaos Dwarfs sacrifice captives to their god by throwing them into cauldrons of molten iron or tossing them into roaring furnaces.[3b]
If the influence of Chaos has worked terrifying changes upon the bodies of the Chaos Dwarfs this is as nothing compared to the transmutation of their hardy Dwarf minds. The traditional Dwarf values of stubborn determination, craftsmanship and industry have been twisted into a perverted mockery in the hearts of the Chaos Dwarfs. They became pitiless, macabre and cold-hearted creatures, devoid of mercy and consumed by a need to enslave and dominate everyone and everything they come into contact with, and from this need grew their empire. Year upon year, decade upon decade and then century upon century, with malevolent intent and monstrous patience the dominion of the Chaos Dwarfs has slowly grown. Down the centuries, their culture became as corrupted as their minds at every level, from their language and rune-craft, to the structure of their clans-and their worship -- all tainted by Chaos and poisoned by malice, but they are still uniquely Dwarfen in many respects; loyalty, grudge and kinship stand as solid as iron, but mercy and weakness are intolerable flaws to be contemptuously destroyed. This comes from not some kind of howling anarchy such as Chaos' Human followers, the unthinking savagery of the Beastmen or even the desperate, labyrinthine intrigues and vicious aggression of the Skaven. Instead, they are consumed with a grim, cold cruelty and calculated brutality.[2b]
- "Where was Grimnir when our warriors were dying? Where was Valaya when our children sickened? When we called out for aid in the deep places where we delved, it was not Grungni who answered our call, but mighty Hashut who delivered us in our time of need. Who are the real traitors here? Our kin who abandoned us to madness and death or we who only sought to survive against the forces of Chaos? One day there will be a reckoning and it will be the Sons of the Father of Darkness who will have the victory, not the weak willed spawn of the pathetic Ancestor Gods."
- —Mordian Slagfist, Chaos Dwarf Warrior.[3c]
The Chaos Dwarf have no equivalent to a High King, nor any form of a central figurehead. Instead, the delegations and running of their dark empire is usually run by a cadre of the High Priests of Hashut. These Sorcerers rule over the Tower of Zharr-Naggrund as the lords and masters of the Chaos Dwarfs and high priests of Hashut. Their lore is deep and ancient, the study of machines and magic combined to produce arcane engines of power and destruction.[1a]
It was Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers who constructed the city in past ages, who carved its shape from obsidian and raised its dark towers and fashioned its massive gateways. They are few in number, probably no more than a few hundred amongst the whole Chaos Dwarf race. In the Temple of Hashut the Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers meet in a great conclave of evil to make their plans of domination. There is no leader nor formal hierarchy amongst them, but the strongest voice belongs to the oldest and most powerful, for Chaos Dwarfs respect age and knowledge just as much as other Dwarfs. Each Chaos Dwarf Sorcerer controls part of the city, with its workshops and forges, slaves and warriors, as part of his personal dominion.[1a]
Empire of Ash
- "The truth about the Chaos Dwarfs is buried beneath lies and evasions, for they are the great shame of the Dwarfs. Ask any Dwarf, and they’ll fiercely deny their existence. But protestations aside, rumours of the great foundries in the Dark Lands, of horrid Bull Centaurs, of great cauldrons filled with molten metal hungrily devouring sacrifices to some blasphemous Dark God ring all too true to be the result of idle speculation."
- —Otto Bloch, Professor Emeritus of the University of Nuln.[5a]
The domains of the Chaos Dwarfs has come to encompass the fire-scorched volcanic plain of Zharrduk at the heart of which Zharr-Naggrund sits, and like a black iceberg, its real extent lies not above with its armoured ziggurats and fire-lanced temples, but below the surface in countless miles of magma-lit delvings, cavernous chambers and vaulted mines which resound to the cries of tortured slaves and the ringing of hammers in an untold number of diabolic forges. For many miles around it, the Plain of Zharr has succumbed to-the hand of the Chaos Dwarfs. It is littered with the scars of vast open mines, fiery rivers of magma, ash dunes and stagnant pools of foaming yellow and blood red - noxious with toxic spoil and fortified workings and watch posts which line the great machine-crushed roads upon which countless slaves haul ore and plunder to feed the ever-hungry city of the Chaos Dwarfs.[2c]
Beyond their heartland in the plain of Zharr, they have raised great fortress-citadels and towers to establish their dominion throughout the far flung and perilous Dark Lands, although no force, even one as brutal as the Chaos Dwarfs can lay claim to true sovereignty over this vast realm of accursed, monster-infested shifting ash-deserts. At the edges of the Dark Lands, the outposts and black iron watch-towers of the Chaos Dwarfs extend as far the great Desolation of Azgorh and the coastline of the Sea of Dread to the south and High Pass to the north, while Mkulak - the Place of the Skull, seat of the ancient Dwarf hold before the Time of Chaos, is still populated but is a strange, secretive place, and the bustling workings of its slave-port and anchorage hide an ancient inner-city that is little more than a heavily garrisoned tomb. The forbidden, lower levels of Uzkulak are shunned; even by its masters and to be consigned to its depths.[2c]
- "You may curse us, shun us, deny our existence, but that is no matter. You have done so for centuries. Had you not abandoned us, our vast family would never have been sundered. Thanks to your cowardice, we are strong and mighty, seeing the truths that have long been hidden from Dwarf eyes."
- —Gakroth, Chaos Dwarf Sorcerer.[5a]
The Chaos Dwarf civilisation has grown apart from the influences and developments of the Old World and has acquired a distinctive character of its own. Chaos Dwarfs wear armour made from metal scales bound together with flexible wire that makes a strong but pliable defence. This armour is usually painted red. They wear extremely tall helmets which are as much a symbol of status as they are for protection. Depending upon his expertise a Chaos Dwarf's helmet can be a distinctive shape or may be decorated in a specific way. The most important Chaos Dwarfs wear especially large and elaborate helmets. All Dwarfs have thick beards and Chaos Dwarfs curl their beards in exotic styles. This makes them look even more ferocious and draws attention to their long snaggly tusks.[3b]
Fires of Industry
- "Dwarfs of the Dark Lands are good allies. They forge swords, armour, and weapons. They ask only for slaves. We have many slaves."
- —Dreezen Killheart, Kurgan Champion of Khorne.[5a]
Chaos Dwarfs are master craftsmen, and their armouries produce an endless stream of armour and weapons, dark devices and works of daemon-fueled occult engineering. Much of this wargear, the lesser products of their craft - blades and steel whose quality still outmatches any mere human craftsmanship is traded northwards to the warring Chaos-touched tribes and eastward to the Ogre Kingdoms in return for slaves, for which the Chaos Dwarfs have an unending demand, rare metals and gems, and to slake whatever strange desires the Sorcerer-prophet's experiments might require. By this trade, blood is spilled across the world by their weapons, and in doing so the Chaos Dwarfs both enrich themselves and sow destruction in Hashut's name, and moreover, they spread their insidious influence even further, gather intelligence in regards to their enemies and so bring their dreams of dominion closer, one drop of shed blood at a time.[2d]
The greater works of their hell-forges and the spawn of the dark intellect of their sorcerers, however, they guard jealously for themselves and it is on the bedrock of these malevolent engines, savage weapons and brutal sorcery that the Chaos Dwarfs' true power is founded. Chaos Dwarf warriors are themselves equipped to the highest standard and every Sorcerer Lord arts and outfits their soldiers to their own design: and in their own distinctive livery. The majority of their troops are armed with masterfully crafted axes, vicious stabbing blades and barbed war-picks, and protected by heavy scale corselets of rune-hardened iron or bronze, tall helmets and heavy-metal shields.[2d]
The most potent wear so-called blackshard amour, forged with hellfire and blood, stronger than mere steel and phenomenally resistant to the effects of fire and heat. A significant number of troops are armed with firearms, from intricate Wheel-lock pistols to the bratty, bladed fireglaive repeating guns. But the hailshot blunderbuss - a powerful, short-ranged weapon whose murderous fire is amplified when used in ranked fuselage - is the most common and iconic. This last weapon was developed to combat the near-limitless Orc and Goblin hordes that abound in the lands around the Chaos Dwarfs' domain and has become the terror of the greenskins in battle, able to mow down the Orc charge and slaughter scores of howling Goblins in a single, thunderous firestorm of lead.[2d]
Whips of Slavery
- "We do what we must to survive. We’ve made many concessions and thrown our lots in with the Greenskins, but as their masters, not as slaves. Of course, our values would never have been compromised had it not been for the betrayal of the past."
- —Zhorgrath, Chaos Dwarf Engineer.[5a]
Even though their numbers have shown a slow but steady increase down the long centuries in which they have carved their empire from the Dark Lands, the Chaos Dwarfs are still few, and are far outnumbered in their realm by those over who they claim dominion by virtue of might and cruelty — their slaves. The Chaos Dwarfs consider all life other than that of their own kind to have value only as raw resource and fitting sacrifice, and to them the muscle and sinew, and even the souls of those that bow and scrape at a gesture of their iron-shod hands and cringe before the stroke of their steel-barbed whips are no more than a commodity to be amassed, exploited and spent. Without slaves Zharr-Naggrund would not have been built and its vast industries could not be maintained, and even now, the need for fresh-blood and labour only increases with each passing year and the desolate empire always hungers for more.[2d]
If the Chaos Dwarfs' grand and sepulchral plans bow to any pressure for speed in their execution, it is this increasing need for fresh slaves that is the cause. Should the levels of `livestock' falter through disaster or over-use, and are required at the commissioning of any grand new design, the Chaos Dwarf warhost is gathered and a suitable target selected for despoil, while simultaneously iron-masked emissaries go out to the tribes of dark-hearted men, - Ogres and even Orcs to barter razored steel for lives. This in turn can trigger fresh assaults and ravages far beyond the Dark Lands to feed the Chaos Dwarfs' tally, and captives taken in distant lands can eventually find their end drudging in the slave pits of Zharrduk or slaughtered upon its burning altars.[2d]
Unfortunate wretches of many races toil amid the poisoned air and burning ash of Zharrduk, and like the craftsmen they are, the Chaos Dwarfs prefer, when possible, to select the 'right tool' for the right job — from mutilated Elves flayed and bled to provide alchemical unguents to fettered and broken Chaos beasts from the Northern Wastes harnessed for their immense strength and tolerance for injury. But by far the most common slaves in the Chaos Dwarf realm are Orcs and Goblins, and this is not simply because they are native to the Dark Lands and its bordering mountains, but also because they are hardy creatures who will often last the longest in the noxious fumes and murderous conditions under which they are made to labour. Of these, the Hobgoblins have a unique and favoured place — as much as a slave might be favoured by such cruel and callous masters.[2d]
Perhaps the most distrusted, vicious and above all treacherous of Goblin kind, the Chaos Dwarfs seldom reduce the Hobgoblins to base toil but rather employ them as slave-overseers, lackeys and even as troops, providing utterly disposable reinforcements for their own forces, enabling a larger enemy army to be weakened without cost in Chaos Dwarf lives before they themselves move in for the kill. Hated by the other greenskins who would happily murder them if they could, the Hobgoblins of the Dark Lands have come to rely on the Chaos Dwarfs for patronage and protection. While they are so treacherously eager to betray each other for advancement; they are quite incapable of fomenting any cohesive rebellion against their brutal masters as they cannot even trust each other, making them in some ways the perfect slaves.[2e]
Humans too have their place among the slaves of the Chaos Dwarfs, as they are adaptable and quick-witted if though less durable than greenskins and considerably more unpredictable. As do Ogres, who are valued for their raw power but-always present a danger as their primitive, violent spirits can never be fully broken: Skaven are never taken alive unless to be worked almost immediately to death or used as paltry mass sacrifices, as they are simply too devious and the Chaos Dwarfs have learned from bitter experience that any group taken might well conceal untold spies, saboteurs and even deliberately infected plague-carriers placed in their midst. But of all the races to fall into the hands of the masters of Zharr-Naggrund, the darkest fate awaits their kin, the Dwarfs of the West. The fruits of the bitter malice of long, brooding millennia are reserved for the Dwarfs, and of all sacrifices to Hashut, none are more favoured than those loyal to the treacherous Ancestor Gods that have abandoned them.[2e]
- "Picture everything that is admirable in the Dwarfs; their great skill in war, their iron resolve, their dedicated craftsmanship, and their unwavering determination to survive and achieve their goals. Now take all of those traits and shudder as you see them employed at the service of Chaos. That is the horror of the Chaos Dwarf host. They are Dwarfs, but twisted into a foul parody of the noble warriors who have gallantly stood for so long at the side of the Empire. They have embraced the dark powers, willingly delving into the secrets of foul magic and losing much of what they once were in the process. As to what they’ve gained, who can say? Knowledge, perhaps, but many things are best left unknown."
- —Eckhard, Nuln Scholar, burned as a heretic.[3b]
Each Chaos Dwarf, in addition to being a craftsman or artificer, is also a highly trained and disciplined warrior, often with scores of years of battle experience to draw upon. This martial skill is matched only by their cruel desire to utterly crush anything that would dare oppose them and grind it under their heels. There are relatively few Chaos Dwarfs, and each and every one of them belongs to one of the Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers body and soul. Chaos Dwarfs are an unnerving sight in battle.[2f]
They are brutish, grotesque figures plated in black or burnished armour of heavy plate and jagged scales, crowned with tall helms mounted with flame tongue spiked coronas or sharpened horns. Their livery is bright and bloody, and their distorted faces, if they are seen at all, are bestial and filled with malice. Their presence is intended to inspire fear in their foes, and they have lost none of the toughness or skill-at-arms of their western Dwarf kin. To them there are few greater pleasures than the bloody sundering of a foe be it by crushing axe-blow or the flesh-shredding volley of blunderbuss fire. Alongside these warriors, Chaos Dwarf armies make extensive use of their slave force, most notably their Orc, Goblin and Black Orc slaves, which are often overseen by Hobgoblin Overseers.[2f]
Yet, the true might of the Chaos Dwarfs does not come from their rune-etched weapons or blackpowder rifles, but from the massive warmachines that accompany each and every one of their army. In the creation of arms and diabolical engines of destruction, the Chaos Dwarfs of Zharr-Naggrund have no equal in the world save perhaps for the Skaven of Clan Skyre. Aside however from the superficial similarity of their desire to create ever more powerful devices, the approach and means to an end for the Chaos Dwarf and the Skaven could not be further apart. Where the Chaos Dwarfs favour craftsmanship and reliability over mere speed of creation, the Skaven care not for such considerations in favour of raw power and getting the device in operation as quickly as possible, however unpredictable the result or potentially fatal it is to the crew.[2m]
To this end, the Skaven favour the use of the treacherous and potent Warpstone in their works, which while not unknown to the Chaos Dwarfs, they favour the arcane binding of Daemons through the sorcerous lore of Hashut in their most powerful devices instead. The end result can sometimes be no-less dangerous to the Hell-smith or crewman called upon to direct such a weapon, but to the minds of Chaos Dwarfs, such calamity that may result will be caused by the result of weakness or ill-discipline by the operator, or the will of Hashut, rather than chance volatility or shoddy workmanship.[2m]
Chaos Dwarf Infantry
- Chaos Dwarf Warrior - Chaos Dwarf Warriors are the black-iron clad footsoldiers of the Industrial Empire of the Dark Lands. Each of these Chaos Dwarf, in addition to being a craftsman or artificer, is also a highly trained and disciplined warrior, often with scores of years of battle to draw upon. This martial skill is matched only by their cruel desire to utterly crush anything that would dare oppose them and grind it under their heels. There are relatively few Chaos Dwarfs, and each and every one of them belongs to one of the Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers' body and soul.
- Chaos Dwarf Blunderbuss - Chaos Dwarfs armed with the deadly Blunderbuss, a powerful firearm which spits out hails of lead with only a single shot.
- Infernal Guard - The Infernal Guard as it is known, is amongst the most legendary warrior-cult within the Chaos Dwarf Empire, having the sworn task of defending the citadel to the death from any that would assail it, and to carry out the will of the Lord of the Black Fortress without question. The Infernal Guard's ranks are made up from Chaos Dwarfs to whom some stain of dishonour or failure has been attached, an occurrence which in their unforgiving society can result from merely being close kin to a failed battle commander, knowing defeat under the eyes of a Sorcerer-Prophet, presiding over slaves who have revolted or a furnace that has exploded through overuse.
- Hobgoblin Cutthroats - Hobgoblin Cutthroats, or Sneaky Gits as they are sometimes called, are the stealthy assassins and ambushers of the Chaos Dwarf military. Arguably the vilest and most treacherous of all the Goblin and Orc kin, Hobgoblins are taller and leaner than ordinary Goblins, yet nowhere near as burly and brutal as Orcs. In fact, their whole appearance is emaciated and vicious - with narrow eyes and sneering mouths full of pointed teeth that smile moon-wide in an idiotic grin at the merest suggestion of sadistic violence in the offing.
- Hobgoblin Archers - Hobgoblin warriors armed with bows.
- Infernal Ironsworn - The Infernal Ironsworn are amongst the greatest of the Infernal Guard, efficient and deadly warriors tasked with the duty of safeguarding their commanders during the field of battle. Such is their prestige and prowess in battle that they are often called to serve as bodyguards for the Sorcerer-Prophets which lead the higher echelons of the Legion of Azgorath.
- Orc Slaves - Orc slaves are a common force within the Chaos Dwarf ranks, but they are an unpredictable lot and are often sent to their deaths in droves.
- Black Orcs - Black Orcs are one of the strongest if not most unreliable of their slaves, for they have a fierce independence which nearly led to the empire's demise.
- Goblin Slaves - Goblin slaves are the most common of the slave forces as well as the most obedient, due to their conniving nature.
Chaos Dwarf Cavalry
- Hobgoblin Wolf Raiders - Hobgoblin Wolf Raiders are the fast, swift-moving cavalry force which act as scouts and light cavalry in service of the Chaos Dwarfs. These are commonly drawn from the more nomadic Hobgoblin tribes from the east of the Mountains of Mourn and isolated bands which roam the fringes of the southern Dark Lands.
- Bull Centaur Renderer - Bull Centaurs or Bull Centaur Renders as they are sometimes called are, as their name suggests, twisted amalgams of Chaos Dwarf and ferocious bull in aspect, the unnatural fusion creating hulking, monstrous beasts far larger than either and filled with cannibalistic appetites.
Chaos Dwarf Monsters
- K'Daai Fireborn - The K'daai, known in the dark tongue of the Chaos Dwarfs as the K'daai Zharr, which means Scion of Fire or Fireborn, are mighty daemonic fire-elementals which serve the Daemonsmiths of the Chaos Dwarf Empire. Chaos Dwarfs are arrogant, malign and paranoid beings who will bend their knee to none but their Father in Darkness, Hashut.
- Lammasu - The Lammasu has the body of a gigantic bull, a powerful mace-tipped tail and a massive, ugly head. The Chaos Dwarfs believe that the Lammasu is a rare mutation of the Great Taurus, a creature whose forbears were once Chaos Dwarfs, but which has become twisted by the powers of Chaos into a huge bull-shaped monster.
- Great Taurus - The Great Taurus are mighty winged nightmares which soar across the bleak skies of the Dark Lands, a dread realm which is a haven and birthing ground for all manner of monsters and unnatural creatures, but none are more sought after by the Chaos Dwarfs than these mighty beasts which roost high up on the Volcanic Heights.
- K'Daai Destroyer - K'daai Destroyers are the far larger brethren of the K'daai Fireborns, massive constructs created in the form of mighty warriors or iron beasts, such as gargantuan monstrous bulls and other nightmarish creatures, awakened by mass blood sacrifice and let loose upon the enemy.
- Chaos Siege Giant - Chaos Siege Giants are amongst the most powerful weapons within the Chaos Dwarf arsenal, hulking behemoths that combine the strength of the Giant race with the nigh-impenetrable armour of the Chaos Dwarfs. Giants are some of the mightiest creatures to stride across the world.
Chaos Dwarf Warmachines
- Hellcannon - A Hellcannon is a massive smoking construct of metal that growls and shakes with daemonic sentience. In battle, these arcane engines heave crackling blasts of raw energy that soar through the air into their targets, liquefying anything they touch and sending the survivors insane with fear. Hellcannons are guided by a team of corrupt and sadistic Chaos Dwarfs.
- Dreadquake Mortar - Dreadquake Mortars are amongst the largest and most effective of all the mighty siege weapons deployed by the Chaos Dwarfs. They rank alongside other such mighty bombards and cannon able to rend the earth and smash through layered stone fortifications as if they were kindling.
- Deathshrieker Rocker Launcher - The Deathshrieker Rocket Launcher is one of the most diabolic and destructive weapons ever created, for bound up within its munitions are howling, malevolent fire-spirits harvested from the cinders of Hashut's sacrificial altars, and it is the hellish shrieking of these spirits when loosed that gives the weapon its name.
- Iron Daemon War Engine - The Iron Daemon War Engine is one of the latest Daemon Engine in the service of the Dawi-Zhaar. The Chaos Dwarfs possess a mastery of steam technology that far surpasses that of the engineers of the Empire.
- Magma Cannon - The Magma Cannon is a fiendish weapon first conceived of for use against the ravening Trolls and other unwholesome and hungry monsters that spawn and multiply in the Dark Lands, the Magma Cannon being something of a cross between a field artillery piece and a furnace.
Chaos Dwarf Lords
- Chaos Dwarf Lord - The mightiest and most powerful of the Lords of Zharr-Naggrund.
- Sorcerer-Prophet - Sorcerer-Prophets are the greatest of the Daemonsmiths, who act not only as master artificers but also as the High Priest of Hashut. It is they who led their people from the brink of destruction during the Great Catastrophe and first built the great and blasphemous city of Zharr-Naggrund in ages past, and it is they that still command it to this very day.
Chaos Dwarf Heroes
- Hobgoblin Khan - Hobgoblin Khans are the lords and rulers of the Hobgoblin tribes of the Eastern Steepes. Occasionally the spiteful infighting and backstabbing within the ranks of the Hobgoblins will throw up these particularly successful and feared killers, who will rise to prominence and style himself Khan, taking after the wilder nomadic Hobgoblin wolf-clans of the Eastern Steppes.
- Bull Centaur Taur'ruk - Bull Centaur Taur'ruks, also known as Bull Centaur Lords is the title given to the largest and most powerful of the Bull Centuars, hulking and savage creatures that are just as keen-witted and intelligent as their bipedal brethren.
- Daemonsmith - Daemonsmiths, also known as Hell-Workers or simply Chaos Dwarf Sorcerers are both the priest and artificers of their society, ruling over the desolate empire of Zharr-Naggrund with iron-fisted malice.
- Infernal Castellan - The Infernal Castellan are the captains of the Infernal Guard of Azgorh. They are known to be cruel and to drill their troops ceaselessly. They wear Blackshard armour and can carry a hand or two-handed weapon, a shield, a pistol and/or a fireglaive. Sometimes, they can even carry their legions battlestandard.
Chaos Dwarf Holds
Notable Chaos Dwarfs
- Ghorth the Cruel - Current most potent Sorcerer-Prophet. Probably second in power only to Lord Astragoth.
- Zhatan the Black - Commander of the Tower of Zharr, vassal to Sorcerer Ghorth.
- Drazhoath the Ashen - Sorcerer-Prophet in charge of the Black Fortress. Leader of the Legion of Azgorh and the Infernal Guard.
- Bazherak the Cruel - Castellan-commander of the Tower of Gorgoth during the wars against ancient Nehekhara.
- Rykarth the Unbreakable - One of the Chaos Dwarf Lords of Zharr-Naggrund. He is known for his toughness and courage, which set him apart even from other Chaos Dwarfs.
- 1: Warhammer Armies: Chaos Dwarf (5th Edition)
- 2: Tamurkhan: Throne of Chaos
- 3: Old World Bestiary (2nd Edition Fantasy Roleplay)
- 4: Old World Bestiary (2nd Edition Fantasy Roleplay)
- 4a: pg. 39
- 5: Tome of Corruption (2nd Edition Fantasy Roleplay)
- 5a: pg. 157
- 6: Mordheim: The Black Dwarfs