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Budgernaut

Dwarves of Dunwarr: The Balancing Act

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I finally got my hands on Oath and Anvil and I love it! Over the holidays, I played several games with my extended family. We chose randomly for most games and I got landed with the dwarfs more often than not. Though they are still new to me, I really like them. Here are some random thoughts I had about the Dwarves of Dunwarr.

The first thing that I noticed is that you can almost always buy your 5-cost unit on your first turn. I found this to be incredibly satisfying after months of chasing influence to buy 3-gold cards in order to let the stars align and allow me to purchase a 5-cost unit.

At first I loved the Digging Machine. The ability to pump him up with +6 attack (using two 3-gold cards) seemed awesome. However, it wasn't long before I realized that the single 3-gold card in my hand could easily be replaced by a Guardian which allows me to get the same strength, but also have my strength to be spread out so I don't lose it all if a unit gets destroyed.

And then I realized why relying on Digging Machines and 3-gold cards can sometimes be superior to a single Guardian: card draw. After several plays, it finally dawned on me that the dwarves have no faction card that allows them to draw more units. Instead, they can draw more gold. This is where the balancing act comes in. You are really hoping for a hand full of units, with two or three of them being your 1-cost unit which you can play to draw into gold to buff your Digging Machines. Your deck has to have just the right balance of units and gold.

Final thoughts: The balancing act of the Dwarves of Dunwarr is certainly challenging and I can see why so many people have ranked them among the weakest of the races, but I was surprised by how fun this race is to play. It is currently my favorite one, probably due in large part to its novelty, but also because of their challenge. Definitely a solid addition to Rune Age.

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Glad to hear that someone else favors the Dwarfs :). I like the way they work and after looking at them realizing they have no card draw we had looked at the guardian and realized this is why they had no draw. With a gardiun out it takes my opponet 2 destroys to kill anything of mine. With that said we decalared it fair for the drawfs to have a lack of unit draw. However because one needs gold in the deck (perhaps more so than others) to use some unit effects I believe the 5 card hand (which can not really become bigger) becomes inconsistant when it comes to damage. The best thing we thought of was to change the Demolitionist because we never really found a reason to buy it in most normal situations. It has the great ability to look at anothers hand but we just didn't like it because no one really boght 2 golds and we never wanted to take a 1 gold from another player. So we came up with this to help make the deck more consistant when it comes to damage. We changed the demolistionist to

When played: discard X gold cards in your hand to draw X cards.

In this case you can discard those 2 annoying gold cards in your hand to draw 2 more cards however you may choose to keep one of those gold cards to activate an ability of some sort. We havn't tested with it extensivly but it seems to be working out well. 

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That's a neat idea. Unfortunately, my playgroup doesn't like the competitive scenarios. They prefer to play cooperatively, which means there are a lot of abilities and units we never see. However, cooperatively, we really liked the Demolitionist. It allowed me to get more gold (which I could use now and destroy later) while also thinning an ally's deck. I was basically a method for them to destroy 1-gold cards. It was really neat.

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I've been trying to figure how to make the Dwarves more effective, and I haven't been able to wrap my head around it. The one amazing attribute they have in the Rune Wars scenario is when "Rally Forces" shows up you can have an incredible turn that yields you most (if not all) of the cities and tons of units.

I was thinking Demolitionist was actually the way to win with them. Playing him first and looking at your opponents hand can spell out exactly how to play your hand - or to not play at all against him or her. Have you guys found that ability to be subpar? Usually when the Dwarves are playing people avoid 2 Golds like the plague; but the ability to see anyone's hand is pretty cool. Maybe not good enough?

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Budgernaut said:

Final thoughts: The balancing act of the Dwarves of Dunwarr is certainly challenging and I can see why so many people have ranked them among the weakest of the races, but I was surprised by how fun this race is to play. It is currently my favorite one, probably due in large part to its novelty, but also because of their challenge. Definitely a solid addition to Rune Age.

That's awesome that you got O&A, and I'm glad you enjoy playing the dwarves. They're neat and your combo may have some merit indeed.

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I'm surprised that people categorize any of the races as being weak. They're all pretty balanced IMO. In my group the Dwarves are pretty popular, as the Demolitionists can effectively cripple other players if the Dwarves pull ahead early (which they often do).

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