Working on it :) I was going to respond after kedaha’s post last night but decided sleep was a better option.
So, game settings are very hard campaign, and either normal or hard battle. I can not remember off the top of my head which, but I suspect it is normal because I rarely have a unit rout. Other background is that I am playing as Grombrindal the White Dwarf on ME of course.
Turns 1-10 went easily from what I recall. Managed to secure Silver Pass in two turns. Took the Pillars on turn 1 and the other province following turn. The trick was to make good use of the irondrakes. They cause leadership loss when they burn the orcs and force easy routes. Grombrindal is an absolute beast. Not in the same league as Tyrion of High Elves, but all the same, effective at tanking and cutting through orc squads.
Turns 10-50. Gold is tight. Best I can afford is two stacks of Dwarven armies. The immediate decision was to push north and get Mt Gunbad and the Brightstone Mine. 1500 gold extra per turn wasn’t enough though to support a third army. I opted to keep sending Grombrindal north to continue with Orcish genocide. That would at least close off that front, then I could focus my efforts south. Thorgrim Grudgebearer was used to take the port to the west of Silver road and try to contain the orcish invasions. Things are tight…
Turns 50-100. Grind, grind, grind. Vampire counts/Von Carstein decided they wanted me dead also. I’ve tried so hard to keep the Slayer King alive to no avail. He ended up falling thanks to some stupid forays he did into the VC territories. Sartosa also tried to have a go, but decided to peace out eventually once my power started to rise. Securing the port and trading with the empire was a smart move. What wasn’t smart was ignoring the south. I wiped the orcs from the north, but the southern front was being pressured hard. Giants now start to appear amidst the Orcish armies. Black Orcs are their front line and those damn boar riders are exploiting weaknesses in my military strategy. I confederated Clan Angrud, managing to fold the LL into my ranks and his Ancestor Thane. The other Ancestors are gone, banished I guess. Thanks AI for letting them die. Then again, me letting Karak Kadrin die was just as bad…
Turn 100-120. Something had to give. I’ve wiped the Orcs from the north, but was making no substantial progress south. I decided Grombrindal needed to be present. He moves south, opening the northern lands to the VC. In other news, I have enough gold flowing now for a fourth army, and I think I’m set for complete extermination of Green skins. I’ve ranged as far south as Karak 8 Peaks and I think I finally have some traction over the Orcs. Of course, with VC getting stronger, I have a slog ahead of me to deal with them. Still, Mt Gunbad is highly defensible, and I ended up moving my third army there to fortify a little better after losing Grom Pass. Everywhere else is just VC domination at the moment, though thankfully Empire are still holding out.
Moving forward, I want to establish friendly relations with Tomb Kings, at whatever cost. I need to focus on Vampire Counts/Von Carstein. The corruption is taking hold and causing some problems with public order. Add to that, the book of grudges is filled with grudges against VC chewing into my public order and army expenses. I need to right those grudges at any cost.
My biggest mistake was not taking and holding Death Pass I think it is. The provinces with the gold and iron mine at least. That whole province is a great source of income and might have hurt the orcs if they couldn’t maintain that province. Instead, gold became a non-issue for them, leading me to fight a grinding war. Believe me, even losing one dwarf for every ten orcs, their number felt insurmountable to say the least.
Happy to expand further if there are further questions. A lot of this is from recollection, though I have the save files all present. I’m not going to say or imply I’m a great player. Believe me, I was tearing my hair out too often with the battles at times. There were points where I didn’t feel like I was making any progress, just punishing myself over and over and over again. Also loved the underway battles because it worked to my favour. Take that Orcs! I also know there is a lot of work ahead of me. I think I need more flame units to deal with VC. Heck, I’ve only just started getting organ guns online, and only from about the 100th turn have I managed to have proper cannons. They certainly got a workout in one particular battle.