Northern Dwarfs Armybook

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    • Northern Dwarfs Armybook

      (link to the book is at the bottom of this post)

      Hi all!

      There was a big discussion going on in the DH subforum on the subject of the spirit of the army, unit entries, need to have cavalry or centerpiece big model or not and so on.

      I think that the best way to introduce such cool units is to make a separate book. Trying to tie both infantry-heavy, high-tech book with no wizards with choices like monstrous cavalry and monsters and maybe some magic would be nigh-impossible. The more-of-this-or-more-of-that approach that was used in the ID's book was out of the question imho. Half-wild dwarfs living not in the deeps on mountains but in more open scenery would be much different from their brethren. Less orderly, more feroucious and tenacious. IT had to be a separate book. And so...

      Aeons ago, when the world was younger and the air smelled different, when mighty beasts roamed landscape, when there were no cities of men, no kingdoms of elves or wastes of chaos, there we stood. United as one. A proud, prosperous and tenacious race. Dwarfs. Great Tribe of bearded-kin. They have dwelled far north of the Mountains of the World-Spine. Their lands were vast, game was aplenty and the life was good under the rule of High Kings. Centurues have passed. Year after year, the sun rose in the east and set in the west; the moons stood over horizon and nothing, absolutely nothing foretold what was about to unravel, to change us forever.

      It was the year, that was later called 'a year without summer'. The sun turned a shade of orange, then blood, sickness decimated surrounding woods and bad times befel Dwarfs. Scouts reported of a great threat - a huge tribe of orks and goblins have left their dwellings and huts and in great disarray ravaged the bordering territories. Ogre clans have united into a force to be reckoned with, and tales grew of horrible monstrosities appearing in the wake of the night - creatures from nightmares, clad in scales, rows of teetch with acid in their breath. And worse was to come. Snow began to fall in early autumn. Frost and ice covered the fields and tale grew of ice giants coming down from the northern hills.

      The High King of that time was Arhandur Stone Fist - wise and experienced leader. He had 3 children - sons Karandon and Laggur and a daughter - Sigrun. The king and his council of eldest, wisest advisorshave decided, after much deliberation, that they cannot stay in the Land of Ancestors. That they must break to the south, before hunger, monsters and beasts destroy them all.

      Before preparation was done, winter has come and it was the coldest, strongest and meanest winter any of them have ever knew. Dwarfs were found frozen to their way home, whole families perished and great sadness and grief was poured into the hearts of Dwarfs. They knew their home was lost and if they survived at all stood to question. They have marched south, to the fabled lands beyond the Mountains of the World-Spine. The journey was sure to be deadliest and hardest trials our race have ever endured...

      They went through the mountain passes, fighting ice-giants, bears, wolf-packs, goblin tribes and other evils. High King Arhandur perished, killed by a pack of wild orks during night ambush. Hearts of Dwarfs were torn asunder and we were never the same. Great anger was sparked in the deep of our souls. A grudge. Something to be remember till the ebd of the world. His son have inscribed the name of the ork tribe into bloodstained, wrapped in black leather book. Thusly, the first Book of Grudges was born. The tribe of Mountain Jawz was completely destroyed the next day and new inscriptions were added to the book for centurues to come.

      After Arhandur's death, the remaining Dwarfs divided their support into each sibling. They kept together, but each part was to follow lead of Karandin, Laggur and Sigrun. To the very end.

      As the journey continued, Laggur have decided it was impossible to breach the mountains during winter. He fought long fights with his siblings over what do to and wanted to go under the Gorgon - mountain that legends have called 'Firepeak'. Old tales warned to never venture into it's dark and deep caves, for within lies horror itself. Stories warned of fiery deamons, gargantuan bulls and stranger mythical creatures dwelling inside the guts of Gorgon. But Laggur considered them to be no more than tales and tales alone. Karandon and Sigrun didn't want to put the fate of all remaining Dwarfs on risk, even if tales were likely to be no more than stories. They wanted to soldier on through the passes. And so Laggur left them to their fate, bitter and with a feeling of abandonement. The dwarfs of his tribe went into the bowels of the legendary mountain...

      Karandon and Sigrun's tribes went on, fighting for every inch, every day looking death straight into the eye. Each day brought new nightmares and sorrow, but each drew them nearer the edge of the mountain range. Closer to the south. To new life.

      After some hard days they have encountered a mighty river. It was covered with ice, but in most places it was not thick and safe enough for all to go at once. Karandon and Sigrun agreed for the fate do decide who should go first. They rolled a silver dice and the fate of the remaining Dwarfs was decided then and there, by such a small and insignifficant event. From this day on, whenever a Dwarf decides to do a risky action, he mutters under his nose 'dice is rolled'.

      Karandon's tribe was to cross the river first. It took a whole day to let all Dwarfs, their carts, livestock and other belonging on the other side. Then it was Sigrun's turn to go. As soon as she stepped into the ice she felt a tremor unde her feet. A great thunder roared through the sky and air swoop Dwarfs on both sides from their feet. Sigrun raised her head into the mountains only to see a horrible vista of Gorgon in the far distance. The peak was spewing red and orange streaks of fire and a river of molten rock was coming down from the slopes. A humongous cloud of black clouds - like a mushroom formed over the mountain and lightnings were striking all around it.

      As she turned her head to the river her heart sank - the ice was gone. Crushed, mangled and already flowing. She knew there was absolutely no way to cross it now - her people were doomed. The Gorgon's eruption have awoken asleeped beast and monsters who already began howling and roaring to the fading sun. They were so close to the bretheren - yet completely alone.

      Karandon knew there was nothing they could do - the river was wide and black ash began to form on the flowing ice pack, and fell to rest on their helms and shoulders. He knew he could not help and could not stay, they needed to find shelter, to go south. With his heart breaking in half he looked back to his sister. He saw in her eyes that she knew. That she would have done the same, knowing that the lifes of all her subjects was at risk. He knew he had to go.

      Sigrun decided to go back and try to survive the winter in the mountains. It was that or death by the river to the awakend monsters. She knew she saw her brother the last time in her life. They were both last of their tribes to leave the banks of the river, that is now called in Dwarven tounge 'the River of Empty Hearts'.

      Karandon and his tribe went south, where he found mountains rich in ore and jewels, where he started the great empire known today as Dwarven Holds. His scouts sent north the following spring only brought back reports of land ravaged by ice, greenskin, ogres and powerfull barbaric warriors. Sigrun's people were nowhere to be heard of. Some Dwarfs say today, that they now have flying machines because Karandon wanted to go into the air and try to find his sister and her tribe from the sky.

      Now, when centuries have passed, when Sigrun's tribe lives in tales alone, when the north is said to be in hands of powerfull barbarians serving strange dark gods, very few Dwarfs still believe that there are any Dwarfs over the River of Empty Hearts.

      Little they know, the host of the Northern Kral, direct descendant od Sigrun marches his forces through the frozen surface. For the Dwarfs have survived. Thay had to conquer their weaknesess and to kill or break all beasts that stood in their way. And they did. They chanined mighty Mastodons, tamed montain goats and even established trade with a tribe of ogres that calles itself "Ice-Fangs' and who in exchange for metals support Northern Dwarfs in the fields of battle. They have fought for every cave with powerfull bears dwelling in them and turned them into deadly and fearsome mounts. They constructed great engines of war to crush giants and impale deamonic beasts. Their priests have opened their minds to the flow of magic flux, allowing them to control the powers of fire, life and the nature itself. They endured. And then they prospered. And know it is time to reclaim the life and lands they were denied for so long. And to take a bloody revenge.

      >>>>>> A link to the PDF Northern Dwarfs 0.5

      (as the 0.1 version of this book was made by me alone [rest assured I was greatly inspired by the ideas flowing through the DH subforum] I surely missed the mark in the pricing or features of many units in this book. This is it's first iteration and is sure to be tweaked and be improved upon. Feel free to contact me if you want to participate in the effort. I left the magic items section blank for 0.1 version for instance, because I'm sure we can put toghether better items though a brainstorm that I would do in a week of thinking)
      Northern Dwarfs Armybook in the Homebrew Section.

      Northern Dwarfs ADT

      The King in the North

      Furthermore, I consider that Carthage Norther Dwarfs Armybook must be destroyed made official!

      The post was edited 14 times, last by Vitnar ().

    • Here I'll explain the rationale behind the units:


      Kral - Northern Dwarfs King Equivalent. No Throne of the High Kings of the south but if you want to ride in style, climb on top ao a collosal bear and watch your enemies tremble before it's roar!

      Thegn - Thane counterpart

      Ursus Incarnate - The bear-walker himself. Seeker character equivalent. This one will need some playtesting.

      Valkyrie - female Dwarf character is here! Watch out as she sings at the top of her lungs cutting you to ribbons!

      Enchanter - Northern Dwars needed desperately to survive. Magic is fickle but you'll need all the help you can get up there. So the Dwarfs called upon powers of FIre and Nature to aid them. Enchanters are seen to manipulate woods and rocks, revive fallen warriors and the most famous one of them - Tim, has spent many years learning the secrets of the fire and was told to cast balls of fire from his bare hands.


      Highlanders - basic warriors, the cornerstone of a Dwarf society. This unit consist of middle aged Dwarfs that got their share of training and experience. They still have non-combative duties and professions.
      MODELS - Warriors

      Sharpshooters - Dwarfs that from their early years have shown to have a knack at shooting things. Like that fox by the bushes. Or that squirrel there by the bark! See it? It will make a good addition to the stew Snorri!
      MODELS - Marksmen

      Beardlings - youngest members of the Dwarf society that are old enough to properly hold an axe. In a more steady society, those would not have to go into the wild and try to survive on their own, alas life in the far north forces them to often leave homesteads early. They are full of eagernes to prove themselves before the eyes of their kin. Left alone, they lack the experience and proper training and equipement.
      MODELS - Warriors

      summary - you can use DH core and straight away use it as ND core. They lost access to Greybeards because 1. harsh life in the north makes life of experienced elders much more valuable, so they are less prevalent in ND hosts 2. ND had to be different from DH and this is one of the way to do this. ND have access to MI, MC, Chariots and Monsters. So access to S4/S6 core was out of the question. Beardlings are a screening unit that is supposed to fill the void left by Steamcopters and Vengance Seekers. Well they try their best.


      Old Timers - elder, exerienced Dwarfs. DH Greybeards equivalent. TO make them stand out from them a bit, their special rule waas replaced with a rule that to me is an experiment - an attempt to invent a good special rule for combat grind. Time will tell if they are priced correctly.
      MODELS - Greybeards

      Shieldmaiden - Only unit in ND that has Shieldwall. This unit is in the book for few reasons, 1. the community wanted female warriors 2. there are plenty female dwarf warriors avalible 3. I wanted ND to have an anvil-ish unit. 4. last but not least - ND's first leader was a rhynn - Sigrun. Memory about her heroic deeds that allowed ND to survive sparked countless daughters to take the guarding vow and start a new life as the shield that ptotects the most important thing in the north, the ever-burning flame of Sigrun in the center of the temple dedicated to her name.
      MODELS - no direct equivalent in DH. Deep Watch could do.

      Keepers of the Hold - DH Kingsguard equivalent. They serve to protect the leaders and stand as hardest hitters in a ND army when there are no bears or mastodons in sight.
      MODELS - Kingsguard

      Wardens - they fill the same role as their DH counterparts. Eyes and ears of the Northern Dwarfs army, especially since they do not have any flying creatures or device to scout from the air.
      MODELS - rangers

      Cult of Ursus - DH have seekers, ID have Disciples of Laggur, ermh Lugar and so I reckoned that the idea of super angry half-naked Dwarf is inherrently present in out history. But every warrior's life is of great value deep north. There are no unbreakable maniacks, because ND need to survive to fight another day. Ursus cultists are Dwarfs that live their live striving to become bears. They consider their weapons to be the claws, they dress in bear cloacks to hasten the change and during battle they chant unintelligible songs full of growls and howls. As they do it, unwittingly they concentrate the flux of magic of the nature around them which may give them unnatural strength, toughness or ferocity of a bear.
      MODELS - Seekers

      Ice-Fang Clansmen - members of an Ogre Clan that plead their fealty to the ND Krals. In exchange of metals and creations of Dwarven craft they send ther warriors to aide Dwarfs when called upon.
      MODELS - no DH equivalent - OK clansmen are best.

      summary - ND special is less tanky and shooty than DH special section because 1. they are less technologicaly advanced so plate armour is a rare sight 2. their strength lies elswhere.


      Dwarfs of the north didn't invent black powder and when they meet those who used it, they rejected the idea completely. It's a doosy to store it when there's snow falling everywhere, shooting it can cause avalanches and the smell it makes scares the animals. No need fo it here lad! Oh and because ND never got to bing magic wings onto runes, they are less reliable that our southern cousins' ones.

      Balista and Catapult -are straight away from the DH book, no commentary needed there.

      Net Balista - is a tool designed to slow down enemies rather than killing them. Sometimes it is better to have foes stomped to death by an angry mastodon than to chip off a few fighers here and there.
      MODELS - regular balista should suffice

      Axe Lobber - for those of you that still have Malakai Malakaissons Goblin Hewer - I give you it's ND equicalent It's the closest thing Northern Dwarfs have to the organ gun.
      MODELS - you'll need to get creative or get to Ebay

      summary - if you like to shoot, you'll have some occasions with a ND army, but monsters need to me taken out in different ways.


      Great Mouflon Chariot - I always like the idea of Dwarven chariot from when I saw it in the Battle for the Middle Earth II game, so here it is. Two nasty big mouflons hauling two angry Dwarfs from the Rangers guild, who has cought and domesticated the beasts first. As an upgrade, they can pack provisions for the nearest Dwarfs - food and ale to improve moods and eagerness to fight

      Ursine Cavalry - I thought Dwarfs should have this unit long time ago, but it has no place in DH book imho, because it would either have to be super comped or would create so much internal impalance that I cant even. This book has less cool artillery, less shooting units, less durable infantry so Kingsguard on Bears should fit nicely.
      MODELS - no DH equivalent obviously. Scibor has some bear riders or you could place some models on top of those

      Great Mouflon Cavalry - light cavalry of the ND. Please notice that mouflons being goats, laugh in the face of uneven terrain, rocks, ruins roots you name it. They hit mildly and get hit hard so don't let them near enemy's heavy hitters or shooters.
      MODELS - it's like this company knew all along :D

      Armoured Mastodon - Ogres have tamed Mammoths, well we tamed Mastodon! Similar beast really, our was covered with protective barding but does not have a chill aura around it. It has one big crossbow on it's back too!
      MODELS - OK Thundertusk springs to mind but I don't personally like it's 'head'. Get creative.

      summary - horses are much faster than mountain goats but the latter hit much harder than the former. As for bears, the M6 is best a bear can do withouth the help of magic. A banner for instance, hmm...
      Northern Dwarfs Armybook in the Homebrew Section.

      Northern Dwarfs ADT

      The King in the North

      Furthermore, I consider that Carthage Norther Dwarfs Armybook must be destroyed made official!

      The post was edited 5 times, last by Vitnar ().

    • Decent. I hope its not lost on you that this is effectively the exact same as the current DH book but with the toys we've been asking for... only without a lot of things we currently enjoy. Which is really not the point...

      All the same a really great effort and I'd be interested to try this homebrew.
      @Dan 's Roomate
      Epic Poster
      8,000th and 9,000th forum member
    • Omarcomin wrote:

      Decent. I hope its not lost on you that this is effectively the exact same as the current DH book but with the toys we've been asking for... only without a lot of things we currently enjoy. Which is really not the point...

      All the same a really great effort and I'd be interested to try this homebrew.
      Of course the cool toys from the DH are gone, because no book should have no weakneses ;) That's why I went with lover AS across the board and only one unit having access to shieldwall. No gunpowder weapons, vanguard would be introduced as a banner probably. Those should feel rather different from DH becasue they rely much more on straight up movement, have cavalry and two Monsters and real magic along with a wizard conclave unit. Yet don't have any flight-capable unit, no unbreakable stuff, no reliable runic magic, much less medium firearms.

      Whaddya think of the Shield Maidens? There is suprisingly lot of female Dwarf models yet we had no rules for the ladies, as was pointed out in the relevant thread. I wanted to have as much usage of current models as possible, so the army would be easy to start if you own or have a friend who owns some Ogre Kingoms models.

      And did you like the fluff? :D
      Northern Dwarfs Armybook in the Homebrew Section.

      Northern Dwarfs ADT

      The King in the North

      Furthermore, I consider that Carthage Norther Dwarfs Armybook must be destroyed made official!
    • I like how much effort you put into this especially considering the players who have been asking for something sort of like this have pretty well all rejected the concept out of hand. I really do applaud the effort but I think it kind of serves to reinforce the incorrect assumptions about our current book. There's no reason every other book in the game can have all units types and none of our special snowflake weaknesses... particular since very few of them have obvious or glaring weaknesses they aren't able to overcome..

      On its own and of its own merit this is an amazing thing.

      For example why can almost every army in the game get access to an LD9 bubble?
      @Dan 's Roomate
      Epic Poster
      8,000th and 9,000th forum member
    • While I was one of those arguing that a spinoff book was unnecessary, I applaud the time and effort that went into creating this!

      I love the concept behind the Cult of Ursus, and the Ursine Riders serve as an excellent foundation for possible additions to the DH book.

      Very well done, @Vitnar! I'm absolutely borrowing some of this for my upcoming homebrew rewrite of the DH book. :thumbup:
    • Hey Vitnar. I quite enjoy the effort and time you've put into the creation of this homebrew book. Norse dwarves with a love of bears is another type of dwarves I can get behind, distinct from the traditional warhammer dwarves.

      I'd love to get involved, either by providing fluff or new unit ideas, and fixes and streamlining of current units.
      I am a mostly virtual tabletop player owing to the difficulties of participating in the hobby in the South-East Asia area. I primarily enjoy fluff, and possess armies for KoE, SA, DH, and EoS.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Rayneth ().

    • This is simply brilliant.


      This is my new DH book.

      It's not just "some effort"; its spot on awesomeness.

      It's totally cool.


      Let's get togehter and test this freaksihly cool book.

      How/what/when have u made this dude!?

      @Omarcomin I get where you're coming from too bro - but dang the book is sexy isn't it. We could get behind this right?
      Booooooaaaaaarsssss .... Chaaaaaaaaaaaaaarge !!!

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Pellegrim ().

    • Applause for the effort. Well themed.

      Sharpshooters seems a unit at odds given the "theme" of the army.

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    • I dig it. I think the RT will reject it since they don't respect community work/effort, but I really, really like it.

      Some (hopefully constructive) criticism, in order of importance:

      1. Fist of Ancestors is a bit too punitive--especially on i2 units. If we're going to trade one attack to strike at initiative, that initiative needs to be higher than 2, I think. Either buff their init, let them keep the second attack, or add an ini buff to the weapon itself in halberd mode... or maybe some combination of them.

      2. No MCav mount for king--While I think the Colossal Bear is cool, I DO think a mount like the Ursine Cav mounts would be nice--I really like the idea of the king leading a charge of cav.

      3. What is the rationale for having an ostensibly assault focused dwarf book not having any Str 4 in core? Could warriors get a strength increase for a modest price bump? I guess I just don't understand the reasoning--but I do like the greybeard equivalent in special with their new rule. Perhaps they could get spears too, though?

      4. Furthermore, why is their no plate in the special section? Is it their (relatively) primitive tech level? Could Valkyries and KG equivalent get bear pelts as well, perhaps?

      5. Dwarf infantry is 1 M slower than other infantry. Why is dwarf Cav 2 M slower than regular cav in it's equivalent class? Perhaps it could stand to be tested at 1 M slower like our infantry, then scaled down if it proves too abusive.

      6. I really, really like the impetuous rule. I have no criticism, I just wanted to point out how much I dig it.

      Also, I'm down to help. I'm very busy with grad school and wedding planning at the moment, but I'll help as much as I can.

      The post was edited 4 times, last by TheThievingMick ().

    • You beat me too it @Vitnar! I was going to make a similar book with no black-powder, or throne, or other stuff.

      I would have kept Seekers though. Your's is more "Northern" themed, mine would have been more "Holdless" - all the Dwarfs living the life of adventure/exile in the wilderness without the "fancy toys" of their "settled cousins".

      Favourite part: "stew and ale for all!" - the image I got is of two dwarfs dressed in red, bringing cheer to all the good boys and girls with their death chariot.
    • with post 2 editted, it becomes even cooler. You really got that unique feel that pulls you in the world of Nothern Dwarfs.

      Cult of Ursus - DH have seekers, ID have Disciples of Laggur, ermh Lugar and so I reckoned that the idea of super angry half-naked Dwarf is inherrently present in out history. But every warrior's life is of great value deep north. There are no unbreakable maniacks, because ND need to survive to fight another day. Ursus cultists are Dwarfs that live their live striving to become bears. They consider their weapons to be the claws, they dress in bear cloacks to hasten the change and during battle they chant unintelligible songs full of growls and howls. As they do it, unwottingly they concentrate the flux of magic of the nature around them which may give them unnatural strength, toughness or ferocity of a bear.

      Are you serious dude? Do you know how cool this is? I want to go make these model now :) Man
      Booooooaaaaaarsssss .... Chaaaaaaaaaaaaaarge !!!
    • I don't normally like homebrew, but this looks pretty cool. Well done Vit

      What's Valiant? I don't know if I'm blind but I can't see it explained anywhere.
      EDIT: nevermind, the forum lexicon explained it to me from my own frikking post...

      Couple things which I think can be cleaned up - not touching balance for now:

      - I think Impetious is redundant as a separate rule. It is functionally almost exactly the same as Swiftstride. It stacks with it, but I notice only infantry models have it so...remove and replace with SS?
      - If only the Valkyries have shield wall, I think its worth removing it as a special rule for differentiation from standard DH. Maybe give them a flat 6+ ward like cult of Ursus.
      - At I2, Fist of Ancestors can be just a simple Halberd/GW swap without penalty I reckon.
      - Old Timers: You should'na dun that - mechanically, its easier if it gives Frenzy on taking a wound in close combat. Then the rule doesn't need further explanations, as the frenzy can stay on until lost. yes, on occasion it means that vs I1/I2 enemies it will do nothing (gain frenzy after already having attacked - lose combat, lose frenzy), but maybe thats an opporunity to allow them Fists of the Ancestors as a weapon option so the player has to think what weapon they pick? #RuleSynnergy
      - Hell, if Fist of the Ancestors is a thing, then don't worry about GWs/Halberds in the rest of the book (core, rangers, ursine cavalry am i missing anything?). Give them all Fists, at a raised cost ofc. Makes modelling easier as anything thats two-handed can only be a FotA.
      - Don't give Ice-Fang Clans an Ironfist option, it means having to explain another rule, and the army starts suffering from Chaos Dwarfs patchwork jester army syndrome. Sons of the Avalanche is a drag but needs to be there for inter-book consistency, IFists do not.
      - Enchanters should probably not have Plate. No reason for it considering the rest of the book maxes out at Heavy
      - Lords should also probably not have Plate, as they are then the only option with it. Downgrade to heavy and give them an option to buy a bear cloak?
    • I loved this book, I wish I could see an army so well painted, it would be glorious. A couple of suggestions:

      - Valkyrie could be a Wizard of Divination, although it could only carry a single spell.
      - the equivalent of KG and cavalry in bear could bear bear coat.
      - The bear cavalry could have the option of putting ursus cultists as horsemen (so you have a more defensive cavalry to be able to wear armor or a more offensive)
      - Would not you miss a bear car as an upgrade of goats?
    • @Vitnar

      I browsed your book yesterday... iirc the LD values are the same as DH ? Shouldn't "wild" dwarfs be less disciplined than "classic" dwarfs ?
      " Des chercheurs qui cherchent, on en trouve. Des chercheurs qui trouvent, on en cherche " Charles de Gaulle
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    • Nice. Thumbs up, great job @Vitnar!

      Some things a bit OTT, but nice start.

      A lot of good advice from @Fnarrr, I agree with all of his points, so not going to repeat it.

      Chariot a bit on the cheap side for the effect.

      All of the Mouflon things, I would suggest going a bit more generic for people to be able to use different models (Badgers, Pigs, Ponies...). In that sense, "Mountain Cavalry"?