Miners are a bit of an odd duck unit in the Dawi roster atm. They are cheap, and pay for AP, Armour, Vanguard, which means that they are virtually useless in combat due to very low MA and MD. The blasting charge variant are of course very useful and a staple of the Dwarf roster, but it still feels strange to have Dwarfs be able to go so wide.
The new unit Warp-Grinders for the Skaven are interesting in that they have a bound AOE net, that enables them to pin enemy units in place. This is obviously a classic weakness of the Dwarfs, and one that has led to all sorts of controversial balancing changes in order to mitigate it (very high mass for Dwarf infantry, undercosted units of various levels, Rune of Wrath and Ruin, Tormentor's sword on Thanes).
What if Miners were given some equivalent of the Warp-Grinder AOE net ability as well as a boost to their melee stats and a significant cost increase (at least 325 ->500/600, and 425->600/700, but these figures would need to be higher or lower depending on exactly what was done)? Btw I don't mean give them the AOE damage one, just the lock in place one. It could also be some variation on this ability, not necessarily the exact same one.
This seems like it would work around a few of the Dwarf balancing difficulties in a somewhat thematic way, while compensating for their loss of the ability to spam cheaper chaff by giving them a tool to protect their backline/vangaurd/flanks.
The reason I think this could be a potentially good idea is:
1. It would mean that buffs to miners to make them more of a sidegrade to Dwarf Warriors/DW GW wouldn't make these units redundant. Nets have diminishing returns, and the player would have to decide how many they would need, similar to how it is now with Rune of Wrath and Ruin.
2. Would allow Runelords/Runesmiths to move away from being slowbots and being given some of their damage prowess back. The old direct damage rune was never something I much liked, so hopefully Rune of wrath and ruin could be offensive in another way that gives more counterplay. (Or maybe leaving this as a slow would be the best call, no strong opinion on this)
3. Miners would now be able to support vanguard forces in more interesting ways than just spam the hell out of them and hope the massive surprise hit will take your opponent down.
4. It would allow the Dwarfs to have their mass nerfed. At the moment Dwarf mass is a necessary evil, but it overly hampers the use of cavalry against the Dwarfs as a side effect of preventing Chariots & SEMs from wrecking them with ease. They could still have higher average mass than other infantry, but at the moment the mass in combination with the magic resist & armour can make the options to use against Dwarfs feel a little limited.
Potential Concerns would be:
1. Would the Dwarfs become overpowered if they could reliably net units in place? While this is a possibility, I think that as long as they are costed appropriately this wouldn't be a problem. Trapping something is only half the battle, you also need to do damage to it.
2. Would it be too hard to escape Dwarf units once caught? This is why nerfs to Dwarf mass would be a part of this rebalancing. By offering Dwarfs guaranteed net options, you could them make the entire army less of a pseudo-net through their mass.
3. Would it become too hard for Dwarfs to clear chaff without blasting charges? While this is a concern, I think with the use of Irondrakes, Flame Cannons, Gyrobomber bombs, and rebalancing the offensive stats of some other Dwarf units (LB GW) this wouldn't be too much of an issue. There will also be future content for Dwarfs which could help here a little too.
So what do you reckon, worth considering?