During the time of the northward Dwarf migration along the Worlds Edge Mountains many thousands of years ago, some Dwarfs strayed too far in their quest for precious ores and gems, reaching the dismal Mountains of Mourn. When the Time of Chaos came, these Dwarfs were cut off from the rest of Dwarf civilisation. The rest of the Dwarfs assumed they had perished in the deluge of Chaos. The hardy Dwarfs were not killed but neither had they remained unchanged by Chaos. Eventually even these stubborn Dwarfs succumbed to the warping effects of the Chaos energies, gradually becoming the perverted and cynical mockery of traditional Dwarfs now known as Chaos Dwarfs. In many ways they are the antithesis of the Dwarfs that remained. Where Dwarfs shun most magic except for their Runic magic, Chaos Dwarfs have embraced it; where Dwarfs worship their Ancestor Gods and despise Chaos, Chaos Dwarfs have abandoned the Ancestor Gods and submitted to the Father of Darkness. To Dwarfs, the greenskins (Goblins, Orcs and the like) are implacable enemies, while in the Chaos Dwarf empire they are slaves outnumbering the Chaos Dwarfs themselves many times over. In other ways the good values of the Dwarfs were perverted into evil ones, the Dwarfs' traditional love of craft and industry becoming mere, base rapacity.
Government & organisation
The Chaos Dwarf empire is located in the eastern part of the Dark Lands and extends east into the Mountains of Mourn. The centre of their empire and the object of all their industry is Zharr Naggrund, a city built in the form of a monstrous ziggurat of black obsidian.
The city is built on the Plain of Zharrduk, an enormous crater in the Dark Lands spanning hundreds of square miles, and located to the west of the Ogre Kingdoms. The plain is tortured by thousands of years of the industry of the Chaos Dwarfs, and its ground pitted with mines and studded with numerous workshops, foundries, fortresses and other towering industry. Throughout the plain, vast forces of slave labour of many races work ceaselessly at the endeavours of the Chaos Dwarfs.
Society & culture
The Chaos Dwarfs are dependent on vast numbers of slaves to carry out their labour, and seem to have a penchant for obtaining more and better slaves (having even gone so far as to engineer the Black Orcs, an ultimately disastrous experiment that would later result in the Orcs becoming much stronger as a race overall when the Black Orcs joined them). They also trade weapons with the Ogres, the Ironskin tribe in particular, in return for manpower.
The Chaos Dwarfs are not an expansionist race as they have no need for more resources. All the resources they require can be found in their own domain. All war is waged by Chaos Dwarfs with the intent of acquiring more slaves.
Hashut is a Chaos god depicted as a bull-shaped idol, who demands blood sacrifices from his followers. He is worshipped by Chaos Dwarf sorcerors on the summits of the mighty ziggurats erected in his name. At the temple of Hashut in Zharr Naggrund the Chaos Dwarfs have created a particularly gruesome way of sacrifice. They herd their victims into the hollow belly of large statue made of bronze which they then heat with great fires lit under the belly. As the victims burn to death, their cries are funnelled up the throat of the statue. Here they are changed by the reverbarations of the metal until they sound like the braying of a bull, the louder the braying, the most pleased it is assumed the bull-god Hushut is with his offering.
The Chaos Dwarfs, unlike the Dwarfs, are able sorcerers. They wield Dark Magic.
Chaos Dwarf armies are often composed of relatively few Dwarfs, the majority of their armies being compromised of various types of Hobgoblins, Orcs and Goblins, with the occasional unit of Dwarf or Bull Centaur thrown in to keep the Greenskins in line. As with their non-corrupted cousins, Chaos Dwarfs make extnsive use of blackpowder weapons in the field. These are principally in the form of the blunderbuss, the death rocket and the earthshaker cannon.