- "If you've got the stomach for it, you might make it to Irongut one day. That said, you better like chewin' on metal and rocks cos' that's a light snack to them boys"
- —Anonymous Ogre.[2a]
Ironguts are the Ogres of any given tribe that have the most status and the best armour and weapons, acting as the rock-hard fighting elite of their tribe's Tyrant. They go into battle armed with massive two-handed weapons, be they enormous scimitars, rocks bolted to tree boughs with iron bands, or simply gigantic versions of the traditional Ogre club. Ironguts wear large, ornamental gut-plates to show off their elite standing, and cover their meaty arms and boulder-like heads in heavy armour plating cobbled together from various conquests over the years.[1a]
Although not markedly superior in strength to their fellows, Ironguts are afforded great respect, as they are usually hand-picked by the Tyrant himself. For this reason, a unit of Ironguts may well include the Tyrant's immediate family, where another might be comprised of his favourite drinking cronies. That said, it's not unheard of for the bulk of some especially formidable Ogre tribes to be made up of Ironguts. This is especially true amongst rich or powerful Ogre tribes, who can afford the expensive equipment and weaponry needed to equip a unit of Ironguts.[1a]
- "Be it food or be it foe, Ironguts can down it. First we're gonna beat it, then we're gonna eat it."
- —Typical Irongut boast.[1a]
Very little can stand before a full-blooded Ironguts charge. Any enemy troops that aren't hurled to the ground by the impact of the collision are subsequently smashed, pulped or hacked apart by the massive weapons the Ironguts carry. Any who survive that barrage of brutality risk being stomped into the dirt under by the Ironguts metal-shod feet.[1a]
Ironguts are often used to spearhead an important attack, or are held in reserve by some Tyrants and used to bolster the battle line. A common Ogre saying when things are going badly is that it's "down to the Ironguts". Regardless of when or where they are deployed or how badly they are outnumbered, there is always a chance such a rock-hard formation can batter their way to victory.[1a]
Ironguts are also typified by an unshakable belief in their own power and superiority. This stems from the extensive eating contest that Ironguts go through to prove their worth and themselves both in a crude type of initiation ritual and occasionally just to show off. The Ironguts will dispatch their intestinal prowess by eating a range of unpalatable items ranging from rusty nails, hard gravel, iron-banded cartwheels and even chains and armor, which is particularly hard to chew. It was one of these contest which gave the rise to the myth of "When Bolgut Fell Ill", a favourite amongst Ogre whelps due to its fanciful nature. After all, everyone knows there is little an Irongut cannot digest.[2a]
Ironguts go into battle as a powerful shock force. At the Battle of Magma River, the Rocksplitter tribe was ambushed by a huge Skaven horde. Hemmed in on all sides and outnumbered hundreds to one, the Ogre army was being slowly driven back towards the river of red-hot lava from which the battle took its name. Just when all seemed lost, a furious charge by the army's Ironguts broke a hole in the Skaven line. Swinging to left and right, the Ironguts enlarged the breach while splattering gore in sweeping arcs. Realizing their centre was gone beneath the battering swipes of the Ironguts, the entire Skaven army lost heart, turned tail and bolted for it, securing both a great Ogre victory and the ensuing feast of magma-roasted ratmen. It was a unit of Ironguts that broke through the gates when the Ogres found a Dwarf mine atop Cragspike Peak and it was the Ironguts that held one and finally defeated the black-armoured Warriors of Chaos in the Battle of Bloody Ice and drove back the northern tribes in the long year without sun. [1a]