Introduction - Why Should I Play Dwarves? Welcome to the new and improved Guide to Dwarves! As a people, Dwarves are hearty, sturdy folk who live primarily in mountainous regions. Small in stature, but large in everything they do, Dwarves have great skill in metal-working, mining, inventing new machinery, and of course, brewing beer. They are as stubborn as the rocks they live around, and are often as grim as the grey hills they call their homes. Only when the lust for gold creeps into their hearts, or the warmth of strong ale flows down their throat, or the war horns echo through their stoic halls do Dwarves exhibit the blazing exuberance characteristic of other races. In Poxnora, Dwarves play true to this description. You will find that many of your champions have high defensive capabilities, abilities that boost the prowess of other Dwarves, and amazing powerturns using key runes like Dwarven King and Ironfist Minister. Dwarf decks can be played in many unique ways: efficient, cheap decks that rely on spamming lots of smaller champions; tough, defensive decks that form up nigh unstoppable phalanxes; aggressive, assault-based decks that utilize fast, hard-hitting Dwarves to secure an early advantage; or simply a mix of all these tactics. No matter what kind of deck you want to run, Dwarves are a highly versatile theme that can fit anyone's playstyle needs perfectly. You will have a diverse set of supporting spells and relics to choose from, and a huge champion base from which to pick. There are not many situations that a well-built Dwarf deck cannot adapt to. Those Dwarves with a more thematic flair to them have an ability called Carouse, which can be used on any champion (friendly or enemy) to equip it with a Pale Brew. This immediately grants the Intoxicated condition, giving Dwarves +2 damage and +5 HP or -3 damage and Careless (loses all AP at the end of their turn) if a non-Dwarf. If a Pale Brew is removed from a Dwarf, it gets +5 damage for 4 turns. In short, these buffs are incredible for a free equipment, and turn even the youngest of beardlings into formidable fighters. Combined with the other stat-boosting abilities Dwarves have access to, Carouse is one of the best racial abilities in the game. Carouse can also prevent the use of negative equips on your units, such as Cursed Blade and Withering Fern. When it comes down to it, that positive buff is better than the hampering effects provided by opposing equips. One final caveat regarding Carouse is that when the Carousing champion is already equipped with a brew, it hands out that brew instead of a Pale Brew. This knowledge is helpful for when you want to provide buffs other than the simple stat boost of Pale Brew. So far, there are only two other kinds of brew available: Blacklabel and St. Semmir's. I'll get more into the pros and cons of each further along in the guide. Structure and Outline The structure of the rest of this guide will be as follows: first, I will list the champions available (in alphabetical order) using a 5-star rating system, 1 being the lowest rating and 5 being the highest. I will give my personal preference for upgrades, but feel free to mix and match them as you like; note, however, that some upgrades are clearly better than others. Lastly, I will have a small section dedicated to play notes on that champion. This will include info such as how best to use the rune in-game, what its primary role is, and how it synergizes with other runes in the deck. I will also include PoxBase links to each of the runes in their title so that players can easily reference stats, upgrades, and abilities. After the champions are done, I will suggest several spells, relics, and equips which are general staples for all Ironfist decks. Some personal favorites of mine might also make the list, and these I will be sure to mark somehow, just to let you all know that the rune might not fit your tastes. After that, I will post some example decks, courtesy of PoxBase, to give you all an idea of what a good Dwarf deck should look like. I will try and cover some of the more common iterations and sub-themes possible with Dwarves, provided I have the space. Again, keep in mind that these decks are by no means set in stone, and you should play what you ENJOY playing. Also, just a quick heads up: all ratings in this guide are for full Dwarf/goodstuff decks ONLY, and these ratings do not reflect a rune's viability in other IS themes (e.g. Constructs, Griffins, Paladins). With that said and done, I hope you new players reading this grow to like the Dwarves as much as I have; and I hope you hoary old Longbeards glean something new from the presented info as well. Long live the Ironfist Stronghold! Baruk Khazad!! Khazad ai-menu!!