Dwarmins Groovy Guide to Goblins


There is an amazing lack of guides to playing the Greenskins on this forum. I’m going to use this post to rectify this imbalance.

Rule #1: Goblins are terrible at fighting (But great at making money)

First, I’ll link an earlier post where Dr. Bwaa in paricular, did the math for us all and we all had a decent discussion…

Point is, Goblins Archers are inferior to every other base unit. There’s literally no point in making them, unless you have no other choice. They cost more gold, for less strength, then you would get training every other race.

Goblins alone only get a +3 only racial specific buff via hero (Foolhardy Bigwig)-any other strength buff cards have to come from different species, which can even defending their own land by themselves can be problematic.

Does this mean you shouldn’t ever train them? No, it just means you train them sparingly-if you need troops to hold off an incoming blight wave, or to capture distant cities quickly. Otherwise, save the Gold and move to the next point…

Rule #2: Goblins make other people work for them
Goblin’s are tied with Elves in movement speed-they can quickly move around the map, to claim territory. This is one of your greatest advantages, as your ‘homeland’ of Goblin population is difficult to defend (located in plains, usually close to roads, with a +2 defense bonus being your best fortification) and produces a lot of resources you’d rather not waste.

So look for a race that’s standing between you and the Blight, and send your envoys. Use your income to feed their army, and supplement them with specialist heroes.

Rule #3: A Goblin without a good deck is a bad Goblin
It goes without saying, your base units are weak as a Goblin player, and you’ll have to rely on the strength of your deck to give you an advantage. Not only/just Goblin Cards, you’ll need good cards for EVERY race you might find yourself allying with.

I’d go so far as to say Goblins are going to be sort of difficult to play until you’ve filled in most of your deck with cards. Ironically you don’t exactly need Goblin cards-if you plan to co-opt the local Dwarves, for example, you would obviously want to have a decent deck of Dwarf cards.

Goblin Card List
Figure this is going to make the meat of the post. My card list and my strategy tips for each. Useful for no matter which race you play!


=1. Assassin=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue Elusive
Strength: 30 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 150
Ability: Assassin Sting (Assassins can’t enter combat, or burn bodies. Range 1, Strength 500 attack. At most one immortal can be killed in each strike. Restores in 12 hours, casts 6 mana)

Tips and Tricks: Well, this little fellow is certainly interesting. His ‘Elusive’ trait means he can neither attack nor be attacked by Immortals-they pass him right by. Of course, he can’t burn bodies. His special ability is about equivalent to a barrage from 65 Elven archers (or 125 goblin archers), but it costs 20% of the gold to deploy and 1/3rd of the mana (In the case of Elves), and 40% and roughly 1/2th of the mana (in the case of Goblins).

This ability however, is limited to killing a single immortal, making it much more specific-for killing bosses, and immortal monsters. The relatively low strength (as compared to most of the targets you’ll be hitting) makes it somewhat hit or miss…but, even a 1/5 shot to kill a Boss can be good odds, compared to the low mana cost. The recharge cost is 2 hours greater, however.

The Assassin shines when he has plentiful Immortal VIP’s to target, and enough mana to use his ability repeatedly. This card does mostly rely on luck, however-while you can reliably one shot some weaker bosses (or bosses who have been purged of their strength buffs) and monsters, most strong bosses will be shots in the dark-in some cases, you might even find it better to spend more mana to ensure a kill with another ranged unit, rather than gamble that the Assassins can pull off the job. It should be stated that Assassins can move through terrain that would normally require an army to fight through-they can follow a boss, or camp a monster base, and never be in any danger.

Final Verdict: The Assassin a dirt cheap and safe way to directly counter Immortal Bosses and Monsters, even behind enemy lines. Just don’t expect much reliability on their end against high strength enemies.

Synergy: One neat Trick is combo the Assassin with The Crone, from the Troll deck. Her ability removes strength buffs from Immortals…which means your Assassin just went from a 1/7 long shot, to a sure kill on that boss.

=2.Foolhardy Bigwig=
Type: Mortal Goblin Warrior
Strength: 120 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 100
Ability: Goblin Foolishness (All Goblins in his army fight with +3 strength)

Tips and Tricks: Nothing fancy-the Bigwig is the Goblins sole straight boost card. It’s only real advantage is that it’s cheap to deploy. You’ll not put much priority on drawing this card, but if you find yourself fielding Goblins it’ll be nice to have.

Final Verdict: If you field a Goblin army (it happens), the Bigwig should probably be leading them with his ridiculously large hammer.

Synergy: Consider combo’ing the Bigwig with other universal army boosters, to get the most out your sad little Gobbos-Butcher and Tavern Keeper (Orc) are welcome in any army, Blood Shaman (Orc) works in any map where you have the room to deploy Blood Moon without either harming your allies/buffing the Immortals too much, Tactician (Elf), Vicious Sergeant (Orc) an Ironshell Sergeant (Troll) both provide decent boosts in forests, deserts and swamps, respectively.

=3. Rodent Riders=
Type: Mortal Goblin Warrior
Strength: 270 (15 Popx18 Strength)
Gold Cost: 275
Ability: None

Tips and Tricks: Hey, big surprise, Goblins also have the worst cavalry card of any race. It’s not even cheaper than either the Human or Elven version, and weaker than both. But, that doesn’t matter! Since Cavalry generally have one use anyway-to get a place super quick. Goblins need these cards to get that extra, small boost of speed to far-away places. Interestingly, while being more twice the initial price of a Goblin archer, it’s 3x the strength-and a little more than half the upkeep. If you feel the need to go on the offense, Rodent Riders are not en entirely bad bet, getting more strength for less upkeep, by trading a higher initial cost.

Final Verdict: Strictly a utility card, but if you’re playing Goblins, what else are you going to use? Good for a speedy offense in a pinch, as well-fast units are good for burning Immortal ‘nests’ en masse.

Synergy: If you want to keep up your speed, consider caching them with the fast units of other races to form Blight sweeping teams.

Rodent Riders work great with Spider Pennon, since you can use a mobile deployment base to get to far away places that much faster.

=4. Spider Pennon=
Type: Mortal Goblin Warrior
Strength: 60 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 150
Ability: Spider Pennon (You may deploy Goblins at the spider pennon. Population drawn from the nearest Goblin settlement. Restores in 6h)

Tips and Tricks: No surprises here-as in all races, Banner cards rule as the successful base of any deck. Leading off in a match with them lets you essentially deploy as many in a single turn, in a single city, as you have gold available-as you claim more land, then can deploy more units to catch more land. Later on, you can use them to put out the many specialist cards Goblins have into your armies directly on the battlefield.

Be careful not to overestimate your current valor costs, as compared to the territory you wish to claim, however-it’s very easy for you to claim a large swath of land, with no way to defend it. Plan your defense, then the territory you want-not the other way around.

Final Verdict: Spider Pennons are invaluable. Don’t leave home without them!

Synergy: None yet that I can think of specifically, though technically they synergize with everyone and everything.

=5. Mad Pirate=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 120 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 125
Ability: Pillage (When in a settlement that produces Gold, the Mad Pirate may kill 50 civilians and earn 4 gold for each civilian killed. Costs 5 mana, and restores in 21 hours)

Tips and Tricks: You might ask WHY you would kill your own population (henceforth to be known as ‘Pop Chopping’), but the Mad Pirate can be incredibly economical against the right targets. Consider the base gold value of each races pop

Dwarves and Goblins produce 2 Gold each day
Elves and Trolls produce 1 Gold each day
Humans and Orcs produce 0.5 Gold each day

Killing 50 civilians rewards you with 200 gold.

So, let’s assume you save the reaping hour for right after you collect taxes (the IRS audit from Hell), it’ll take 50 Dwarves/Goblins two days to make the equivalent, and after that you’re losing money (Because you killed them!). Elves/Trolls take 4 days, but Humans and Orcs take 8 days before you lose any money on it. Which is really longer than any campaign ought to last. So sending your Mad Pirates to chop the Orcs/Humans pop is a great way to get quick cash, and you’ll want to avoid chopping the other ones in ascending order.

Note, Orcs and Humans have nice, high populations, so they’ll barely miss anyone. In return, you may consider chopping population of Elves/Trolls (or any race) to deny fresh bodies for an incoming Blight horde. Elves/Trolls in particular, have very low population-a handful of Mad Pirates can ‘safely evacuate’ an entire area with little problems.

Final Verdict: Have Pop, time to Chop. Stick to Humans and Orcs for the best profits, though you can use them on any city to deny fresh corpses for the Blight to inhabit. Consider it a mercy! I do.

Synergy: Mad Pirates need to be drawn from your deck and deployed in a certain place, at a certain time to work- Spider Pennons combo naturally with them.

As the first card with a infinitely re-useable special ability, Spider Riders can allow you call your Mad Pirates back for a short nap, then a redeployment to nearby pennants, ready to population chop once more. Heavy on mana costs, of course.


=1. Goblin Royalty=
Type: Mortal Goblin Royalty
Strength: 12 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 125
Ability: Royal Inspiration (Trade 20 mana for 250 gold, restores in 21 hours)

Tips and Tricks: As your second gold producing Goblin card after the Mad Pirate, it’s mostly good for burning mana, when you have no other use for it. Mana costs are prohibitive, but in return it produces a good amount of gold without any other strings attached. I consider it inferior to the Mad Pirate, but then again you may not have preferential targets, or you may wish for an immediate infusion of gold. It’s not a bad card to put in your deck, though I’d find it hard to see you using more than one, depending on how many mana pools you can get in a map.

Final Verdict: Goblin Royalty will likely be joining your ‘I better send them off to claim this distant Dwarf fortress’ ranks of Heroes. Maybe, one day, they’ll have enough mana for a party.

Synergy: Goblin Royalty will likely have the most fun partying with Elves, whose Pool Priestesses, Elder Mages and Dark Forest Witches all help mana generation abilities. Lots of mana equals lots of gold.

Much like Mad Pirates, Spider Riders can allow you call your Goblin Royalty back for a quick refresher, and reset their ability timer. Goblin Party forever!

=2. Goblin Savages=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 300 (50 Popx6 Strength)
Gold Cost: 225
Ability: None

Tips and Tricks: Savages are exactly like Goblin bows, just without the ranged attack. Yeah. The advantage is that they are slightly cheaper than buying two bows, come out instantly, and use up double the population at once. If you’re desperate for troops, Savages are vital, though ultimately it’s not an optimal choice.

Final Verdict: If you need Goblin troops NOW, Savages are your best choice. The pop cost is painful, however. And they don’t even have bows! (despite having a bow in their card art O_o)

Synergy: Spider Riders are useful for calling horrible Goblin cards back to homes so they can produce gold for you instead of dying. Considering you probably made Savages in an emergency combat situation, you might want to send them back home afterwards. Useful in the reverse as well-if you need to move population from one place to another quickly, to escape the Blight, Savages can evacuate entire cities in no time. Slotting them back into cities will mean all that gold won’t go to waste.

Foolhardy Bigwig is an obvious combo-a pack of Savages led by a Bigwig are going to best strength combo you can produce from Goblins, in a single 6 hour period.

=3. Little Wizard=
Type: Mortal Goblin Wizard
Strength: 30 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 155
Ability: Hocus Pocus (Range 1, X*50attack, where X is the number of heroes in three leagues. Heroes in range have a 10% chance of being sent back to their deck. Costs 6 mana, restores in 15H)

Tips and Tricks: Surely better than relying on your bow-goblins for reliable ranged attack, the Little Wizard is the Goblins ‘heavy hitter’ (Similar to Blind Justice and High Elf) that they can use to blow away Immortal stacks. Given he is only as powerful as the amount of hero cards in range (Note the above the identifier units strength number), he’s only going to be useful late game, when literally your entire deck is fielded…in one place.

Then, comes the drawback-10% of those units will be zapped back into their owners deck. Poof!

Note, Little Wizard does benefit from ALL cards-this includes allies most definitely (I believe), and Immortals maybe (Unconfirmed). In return, Little Wizard CAN seriously mess with your allies cards (this I have confirmed), potentially zapping away their important heroes and scattering their armies, removing all their stacked army buffs-make sure you coordinate with them before you unleash Goblin Wizard mayhem. Or maybe not, if you’re really into roleplaying.

Final Verdict: Little Wizard is the Goblins best offense tool, but the sheer amount of effort it takes may dissuade you from even trying. Great to use late game when all your allies are stacked in one place, and when the consequences are more "lol what did you do’ then, ‘Oh God you’ve killed us all’.

Synergy: Spider Pennon will be a big help in getting Heroes-who have been turned into frogs, rabbits, or transported to an alternate dimension entirely made of cake-back into the battle quicker.

Charming Rogue and Pirate Captain will help get your deck heroes fielded a bit faster, meaning the Little Wizard will get needed strength that much faster.

=4. Pirate Captain=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 120 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 250
Ability: Recruit Misfit (Pirate Captain recruits a random Rogue card from your deck, to his position, without paying the usual gold cost. Costs 12 mana, and resets in 21 hours)

Tips and Tricks: A bit heavy on the mana, his use is obvious-to throw down Rogue cards for ‘free’. The Pirate Captain falls into much the same place as the Goblin Royalty. Is he good? Yeah. Do you have the mana to use him? Maybe. It’s randomness means you either have to severely the amount of Rogue cards he can draw, or you don’t care who you draw. The Goblin Savages are the most expensive (aside from himself) and the highest base attack Rogue unit he can possibly draw, so if you intend to field many savages (and tear up your income in the process) he’s certainly useful. He combos well with other Goblin cards that rely on drawing cards as well…

Final Verdict: He looks cool and all with his orb and sword, but the truth is they haven’t added naval combat to Blight of the Immortals yet and until then he’s got some niche use-definitely not widespread.

Synergy: Little Wizard loves having extra heroes to power his improbable abilities. Goblin Savages most definitely not being invited.

Rogue Lord just loves this guy, obviously. They’re literally side by side on the card list, so you know they’re bros.

Goblin Savages enjoy being hired for free!

Spider Rider is a bit aloof toward him personally (they had a thing), but you know what’s awesome-taking unit you just hired for free, and sending him back to your deck for a FULL REFUND. It’s like cheating on your taxes.

=5. Rogue Lord=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 120 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 200
Ability: Rogue Strength (Gain +40 Strength for every Rogue card deployed)

Tips and Tricks: Well, he starts out weak as your Goblin bows. But, if he lives long enough he’ll become an invincible God of Death and Destruction, since his strength gains have no limit. The trick is getting him there. Also getting him out first…he’s gonna be disappointing if you draw him last.

Final Verdict: Requires you to build an entire deck around drawing cards for him to gain strength. And then, not dying randomly. Can be really awesome. Eventually. As a direct combat hero, his fate is up to the Gods, however.

Synergy: Pirate Captain delivers rogues right to his door. If you can afford the mana costs, it’s a natural pair.

Spider Rider and Spider Pennon are essential to making a good Rogue Lord, a great one. Line up all those shifty rogues you’ve deployed, and send them back to civilian life. Then, you pull them back in, deploying them right back into the field. Rinse and repeat for as many cities and rogues and pennants you have. The Lord will continue to gain as many bonuses as the number of rogue cards you deploy.

Healer (Elven) It’s not cool to lose your 3000 strength Rogue Lord to a stray Immortal throwing a big rock at him. The Elven Healer is important for keeping really important direct-combat heroes alive.

=6. Spider Rider=
Type: Mortal Goblin Warrior
Strength: 150 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 175
Ability: Horn of Despair (Sends all mortals in 2 leagues back to their owners deck, returning population to the nearest settlement and gold to their owners coffers. Costs 8 mana)

Tips and Tricks: An infinitely useful unit, though nearly useless on it’s own, there are several strong strategies. First, it can reset the clock on any Heroic ability-if you have the ability to deploy them back, you can use that ability immediately. She can be used, by herself, as a claimer of distant property-whenever she’s done, just call her back.

Second, it can interact with various Goblin cards in interesting ways, though none more so than the Dealer and Rogue Lord, described in more detail below and above this entry.

Thirdly, it can be used to return population to cities-don’t be afraid to pick up an entire city full of Goblins (or whatever race) in units, move them to a safer place, then use the Spider Rider to slot them back into your safest settlement-the population will return to producing gold for you. For Goblins this is particularly important.

Fourthly, it’s ability to draw your units into, your deck lets you play them back into cities-potentially getting reinforcements from one place to another instantly.

It should be noted that this card reacts somewhat negatively toward stacked, non-hero units. Every unit hit by the horn returns to your deck as a single copy of that card, so any additional units you have stacked up will also be turned firmly into population, and you only get one copy of that card. There doesn’t seem to be a limit of copies of individual it can pass into your deck, however.

Final Verdict: The best card ever.

Synergy: Dealer perhaps the shiftiest deal in all of Goblin-dom, every Dealer in play means you get 20 gold per card you drop. And, the Spider Rider refunds all that gold when she returns units back to your deck. You pocket the difference, essentially meaning +20 gold (per dealer) per unit you that you deploy and undeploy. This works very well with pennants , of course, though almost any unit can be used. You’re only realistically limited by the amount of cities you own.

Spider Pennon*, along with any banner unit, will allow you to mass deploy units from the city, to the deck, back to the field. Though you may need to thin our your deck a bit before this strategy becomes viable.

Rogue Lord as explained in his section above

Kahuna (Troll) and Pirate Captain are used much like you would imagine-get a unit for no gold, then refund them for full gold. Kahuna in particular can get you big refunds from un-deploying monster cards. Once you’ve used all those Hydras, send them back home!

Any Unit with a casting ability, particularly a passive one that does not require battlefield position, is a great audience for the Horn of Despair. Use their ability, blow the horn, redeploy them and do it all over again! Depending on number of deploy spots, you can potentially use some heroes more than once.


=1. Bounty Hunter=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 150 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 150
Abilities: Bounty Hunter/Earns 2 gold for every Immortal destroyed in battle he participates in.

Tips and Tricks: Pretty simple-get paid for doing what you love-killing Immortals. You’ll always want the Bounty Hunter in place where the action is hottest. His nature means you’ll have to toss him into combat, which means he’s at more of a risk from dying. Of course, he pays for himself if he doesn’t die right away, so it’s not that much of a drawback.

Obviously, the higher the population of immortals, the better the reward-so it’s better to field him when holding off Goblins, Orcs, Humans and Dwarf immortals.

His biggest ‘weakness’ is that you have to draw and utilize him when he can still actually help. Also, they don’t stack-only one Bounty Hunter bonus applies. (I tested)

Final Verdict: The Bounty Hunter is great if you get him onto the frontline, and keep him alive.


Healer (Elven) Keep the Dream alive. If you’re expecting trouble, the Healer can keep the Bounty Hunter from kicking the bucket.

Tinker They work very well together when on the offensive, both gaining gold from kills and burning corpses. That’s a lot of money!

Luring units such as Dragonhelm Knight (Human) and Bridge Witch (Troll) are excellent to pair with the Bounty Hunter, drawing in hordes of immortals for you to process into affordably priced government issue lunchmeat.

=2. Charming Rogue=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 60 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 120
Abilities: Heroic Inspiration (Draw 3 cards from your deck into your hand for 6 mana. Restores in 18h.)

Tips and Tricks: Once you have a decent framework of the deck, you’ll start running into the irony of having so many good cards that you’ll have difficulty drawing them all. The Charming Rogue can help with that.

For a relatively cheap mana cost, she can help get your deck into your hand-giving you more options to play, discard and trade. She combos well when you have some cards that essential to be drawn first. Also works well if you have a relatively balanced mix of racial cards, and you need one or the other to take advantage of new territorial gains.

Final Verdict: If you have a strong deck, why not pick her up? If you rely on some of the sneaky Goblin tricks I’ve listed in this thread, she lets you start those even faster.


Rogue Lord relies on more rogue cards being drawn and played-the Charming Rogue lets you sort out the dreck a bit faster, and also let you draw himself a bit faster. He’s no good to you at the back of deck.

=3. Dealer=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 60 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 125
Abilities: Dealers Cut (Earn 20 gold on every card played)

Tips and Tricks: This guy is excellent. All I have to say is, his bonus DOES stack with other Dealers, and it works with allies. Of course you have to draw him early on to get the best benefit, but that’s true to his nature…

Final Verdict: Yes.


He works in almost every army where you have access to Goblin towns, though he’s best when played with alot of allies.

His particular best strategy is listed under Spider Rider.

=4. Ice Lord=
Type: Mortal Goblin Mage
Strength: 180 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 150
Abilities: Blizzard (All immortals within 2 leagues move slower for 24 hours. 8 mana cost, restores in 1d 12h)

Tips and Tricks: The Ice Lord is the Goblins only battlefield control Hero (Aside from their monster unit), offering a moderate speed debuff over a fairly large area. The debuff, unlisted on the card, is 2 hours. So an Ent that gets 8 hours/league over road now takes 10 hours to cross the same distance.

Obviously, you’ll get the best advantage slowing already slow units, over rough terrain-essentially boosting the ‘efficiency’ of the card.

Time for math!

Human Immortals (6hspeed) move along road=Distance covered (4 leagues) in (24h)
Human Immortals move along road, but slowed by Ice Lord (8h speed)=Distance covered (3 leagues) in (24h)

Human Immortals (9hspeed) move through plains, forest, desert=Distance covered (2.75 leagues) in (24h)
Human Immortals move though plains, forest, desert, but slowed by Ice Lord (12h speed)=Distance covered (2 leagues) in (24h)

Human Immortals (12hspeed) move through mountains and swamps=Distance covered (2 leagues) in (24h)
Human Immortals move through swamps/mountains, but slowed by Ice Lord (16h speed)=Distance covered (1.5 leagues) in (24h)

Troll Immortals (8hspeed) move along road=Distance covered (3 leagues) in (24h)
Troll Immortals move along road, but slowed by Ice Lord (10h speed)=Distance covered (2.5~ leagues) in (24h)

Troll Immortals (12hspeed) move through forests=Distance covered (2 leagues) in (24h)
Troll Immortals move through forests, but slowed by Ice Lord (15h speed)=Distance covered (1.5~ leagues) in (24h)

Troll Immortals (16h speed) move through mountains and swamps=Distance covered (1.5 leagues) in (24h)
Human Immortals move through swamps/mountains, but slowed by Ice Lord (20h speed)=Distance covered (1.2 leagues) in (24h)

The general calculation is that the target will take about 25% longer to reach whatever location they were going for.

Final Verdict: Tricky to put in place where he’s needed-timing is everything. Overall, a strong card for buying valuable time, however, especially when the terrain works in your favor.


Obviously going to work best with the usual push/pull/pin cards to further manipulate the battlefield in your favor. Between him and a few other cards, no Immortal horde will move a single league if you have the mana to keep them bottled down.

Giant Spiders are one such good combo-they can catch up and web-trap immortals you’ve slowed down, much easier.

=5. Goblin Tinker=
Type: Mortal Goblin Rogue
Strength: 30 (1 Pop)
Gold Cost: 125
Abilities: Tinker (Gains 3 gold per body when burning battlefield graveyards)

Tips and Tricks: A natural addition to any Immortal clean up team, he gets you valuable gold by moving onto cities and ‘disposing’ of valuables. Obviously, more useful against High population immortals, and less so against Elves and Trolls or monsters-but, gold is gold.

Final Verdict: Pretty good addition to any deck. Like most Goblin cards-if you can get him into place in time to actually help, he’s awesome.


A natural pair with Bounty Hunter, as described above-together, they can really help you make a profit off all that death and destruction.

The Hound Master is great for cleaning up Immortal nests by himself, scaring away the defenders then setting the whole pile on fire. Buddy him up with the Goblin Tinker and you’ll be getting paid for doing so.

Spider Pennon, like with the rest of the Goblin Deck, is great for moving the Tinker into position when you need him.

=6. Giant Spider=
Type: Mortal Spider
Strength: 250 (1 Spider Pop)
Gold Cost: 250
Abilities: Web Trap (Immortals entering combat with the Giant Spider are trapped in webs for 24 hours, preventing movement)

Tips and Tricks: The Goblins monster unit, is not easy to fit into a deck, since he can only be deployed in a spider web you own-which obviously costs a fair bit of valor to claim.

As a monster unit alone, however, he does have his advantages-he’s the cheapest of monster units, is as fast as any non cavalry unit can be, and has decent strength. His monster ‘base’ has the highest population of any monster unit, at 40, which is good since their primary use is dying heroically.

Yes, the Giant Spider is unique in that he literally flings himself at an overwhelming foe, and sticks them in place for 24 hours with his special ability. It’s a spammable, ultimate battlefield control tool that relies entirely on your income available to produce them. It’s the longest pin effect in game (AFAIK), and it doesn’t cost any mana.

Placing them requires general Goblin Cunning, as they can essentially act as ‘sentries’-if you’re afraid an Immortal horde will go left, instead of right, make sure they’ll run into a spider. If you wanna keep them locked in a specific terrain, send a spider. Afraid your army might lose a battle? Make sure you have a spider in there, just in case. Then they won’t be moving anywhere. It’s nice to go to sleep (In real life) knowing the Immortals won’t eat your cities during the night.

Slight drawback? Sacrificing the Giant Spider means he’ll leave a single corpse, and rise with in sticky webbed vengeance at some point, possibly running right into your army and delivering a a dose of poetic irony. Make sure you have a few ranged units to blow him up when he gets close, or you can burn the body on the field.

Final Verdict: ♫Spins a web, any size, Catches Immortals, just like flies♫

Questions, comments, kudos, jeers, arguments and debates? Input is appreciated! Any tactics I missed here you’d like to add and be credited for? Anything I got blatantly wrong? Point it out!


I admit i’m not a big gobbo fan myself and most of the time I tend to use them more as runners to claim other settlements and focus more on my dwarven/orc deck. I do like the Spiders though, very useful when you want to trap some bigger foes.
However I do like you really put the numbers down here how you can effectively use a gobbo deck.
What I tend up doing is treating my gobbos more like zergs for StarCraft, just have piles and piles of 'em, give the Foolhardhy bigwig and just nuke everything with those goblin arrows. Managed to take down three zombambo hydra’s that way.


It’s about time someone made a Goblin guide! Nice job! I’ve got a couple of things to add. It really isn’t as much as it looks like, haha.

First, I formatted the Ice Lord values into a nice table and chart, so it’s easier to find the information you’re looking for. Also (as you’ll see), one part of your Icelord section is a bit misleading: you say that you get the best value out of slowing already slow units, but really you usually get more value out of slowing faster units, as you reduce their speed by a greater percentage overall. Though the real value to be had is, as you mention, slowing units that are in difficult terrain.

There are a couple abbreviations in the table below:

  • h/L: hours per League
  • LPD: Leagues per 24h
  • SLPD: Leagues per 24h while slowed by Blizzard
  • Easy Terrain: Roads
  • Medium Terrain: Plain, Forest, Desert
  • Hard Terrain: Mountain, Swamp


| Race        | Speed | Slow Speed | Terrain | LPD  | SLPD |
|             |       |            | Easy    | 6    | 4    |
| Elf/Goblin  | 4 h/L | 6 h/L      | Medium  | 4    | 2.67 |
|             |       |            | Hard    | 3    | 2    |
|             |       |            | Easy    | 4    | 3    |
| Human/Orc   | 6 h/L | 8 h/L      | Medium  | 2.67 | 2    |
|             |       |            | Hard    | 2    | 1.5  |
|             |       |            | Easy    | 3    | 2.4  |
| Troll/Dwarf | 8 h/L | 10 h/L     | Medium  | 2    | 1.6  |
|             |       |            | Hard    | 1.5  | 1.2  |

I also graphed this info, since I think it’s more obvious where your gains come from in visual form:

(online graphing courtesy of plot.ly)

Another thing to mention about the Icelord in particular, but also several of the other heroes (Spider Rider, Bigwig, Bounty Hunter), is that they have very good base combat strengths for their costs, at least relative to all the other Goblin units. The Icelord and Bigwig are the only Goblin units to provide > 1 combat strength per gold spent! (Obviously I’m discounting non-heroes, since using lots of population with the Goblins obviously comes with a high price.) I think it’s worth mentioning that even without his ability, the Icelord is the single most reliable melee combatant the Goblins have access to.

Finally, yet another reason to bring Spider Riders is the simple fact that you can use them to repopulate the 25 Goblin Bows defending neutral fortresses. Usually these guys are a lost cause, but if you’ve got a Rider available, you can put them straight back into the civilian population for 50g/day, plus the 125g refund on the unit itself!