Welcome to the first of our Abyssal Dwarf blogs! As you know – unless you’ve been hiding in the Slave Pits of Zarak – in March the new and improved Abyssal Dwarf army is marching into Kings of War.
We’ve already released a brand-new Vanguard warband (which is shipping now, by the way) and we’ve covered the new minis being released as part of that here. However, over the next week or so we’re diving deeper into the world of the Abyssal Dwarfs with a look at the fresh Kings of War releases.
In today’s blog, we’re giving you an intro to the background of the Abyssal Dwarfs. There’s a more in-depth review of the Abyssal Dwarf background on the new and improved Mantic Podcast too. Make sure you subscribe here and get listening to our weekly ramblings.
From the distant lands of the north, the lost kin of King Golloch’s folk plot and scheme within their fire-lit halls. Twisted almost beyond recognition, the Abyssal Dwarfs are driven by a thirst for power and wealth that surpasses mortal concepts of desire – and driven by these lusts they plan a campaign for world domination.
Abyssal Dwarfs are a breed unto themselves, every bit as strong, squat and hardy as their southern counterparts, but often grotesque and pale of features, twisted of body and vicious of temperament. The flinty, intelligent eyes of their cousins have been replaced by dark gimlets which stare at the world with undisguised loathing. They are more portly than other dwarfs, for their reliance on slaves has led them to a lifestyle of excess and slovenliness.
Despite this, the Abyssal Dwarfs have lost none of their strength, and their thick fingers are still as dextrous, making them just as skilful in metalworking as other dwarfs – a skill that is used frequently to display an individual’s personal wealth. Each Abyssal Dwarf has a longing for wealth and power that is a yawning chasm in their very souls – a chasm that can never be filled. Their unrestrained avarice makes them more ostentatious than their unsullied dwarf-kin, adorning themselves in finery, elaborate armour and jewels.
The dwarfs of Pannithor have long battled with their goldlust – a love of riches that borders on obsession. Each dwarf knows that they must conquer this extreme avarice, or risk losing their grip on the very reason, honour and doughtiness for which their race is duly famed. It is difficult for other races to imagine the nobility with which the dwarfs carry this curse – and it is indeed a curse, unleashed upon this ancient people during the God War, by the Father of Lies.
When the good peoples of the world forged together to face the Dark Gods, the dwarfs were there, as implacable and stalwart as they are today. But the Father of Lies, great and powerful among his dark kin, espied the potential for corruption within the dwarfen heart, that their love of all things precious could be twisted as the Dark Ones twist every beautiful thing.
To this end, the Father of Lies planted a seed within the dwarfs that could tip their love of gold into a secret, burning need; the urge to collect personal riches above all other considerations. If a dwarf succumbs to these urges, they lose all control; they will covet each other’s wealth, take it any way possible, and perhaps perform the most unspeakable act known to dwarfkind: murder. When this happens the Father of Lies looks up from whatever hell pit he has been banished to and smiles, for at this final step another dwarf has been lost to the Abyss.
The longer a dwarf spends in close proximity to the Abyss, the more twisted they become. It is a small blessing for the wider world that Abyssal Dwarfs are slow to reproduce. Indeed, many scholars believe that proximity to the Abyss means that Abyssal Dwarfs cannot be born naturally at all. Rather, their ranks are swelled by the corruption of renegade dwarfs migrating to Tragar from the southern holds. Some believe that the Abyssal Dwarfs are so imbued by demonic magic that they are effectively immortal, cursed to face an eternity of treachery and wickedness.
Whatever the truth, it is a fact that any Abyssal Dwarf army will see the dwarfs within it outnumbered by the slaves that they drive before them and the magical constructs they conjure to fight alongside them, sometimes greatly so.