I been part of alot of experimentation the past 5-6 games ; Leadbelchers, Yhetees, Golgfag, Tyrant, Beast/Heaven Butcher, Firebelly, Thundertusk, Ironguts vs Bulls, etc...
Many things worked, some didnt.
Things that didnt ;
unit of 4 Mournfang + Dragonhide banner
unit of 5 leadbelchers
unit of 6 Bulls (without character)
Things that did work ;
unit of 3 Mournfang
2 unit of 9 bulls and no Ironguts
lvl1 or 2 Beast
Slaughtermaster as General
Tyrant as General
With that in mind, off my past 10+ Games, there's some stuff i always played ;
a lvl4 SM from Maw
a Dispel Scroll/Hell Heart duo
a hard as nail BSB
First, lets look at my latest list, undefeated after 4 games vs Dwarf, Warrior of Chaos, Daemon and Empire ;
Tyrant Fencer blade + Glittering Scale + Crown of command
Slaughtermaster lvl4 of Maw, Dispel Scroll, Dragonbane Gem
BSB Heavy Armor + Ironfist + Talisman of Preservation + Rock Eye
Butcher lvl2 of Beast + Hell Heart
2x9 Bulls Full Command + Ironfist + look out Gnoblar
3x Mournfang Heavy Armor + Ironfist + Musician/Standard
Basically, 3 fighting unit, one being a bunker, a monster, and 2 cannon. It worked vs most everyone, but i started having problem against people with redirector too... I also realized that 1 game out of every 3, my other ogre unit without character ended up never winning his points back, and just got murdered.
So i'm trying to come up with an enhanced list, something that will work, but that i'm not necessary used to play much. I considered removing the lvl4/lvl1-2 duo, and just going with 2 lvl1-2 + Tyrant, but i realized that i wasn't saving much for just an extra Attacks, Ld and Strenght.
I considered lvl4 vs lvl3, but 72% chance to get the spell i want vs 88% is a big deal imho, as i wouldnt like to end up with Panic, 2d6 S2 and template spell against, say, Daemon. With 4 spell, i'm guaranteed to get at least +1S, +1T or Regen, which are pretty much the only spell i attempt to cast every game (panic too, but its alot more situational).
I even went as far as to consider a 2 monster list, with a hunter riding a Stonehorn, and a Thundertusk as rare. this could work, but i doubt its very viable, considering the stonehorn setup is 430 pts...
After looking at many different list from people, i think i came up with something that could work, but that doesnt really seems quite right yet.
First my general;
lvl4 of Maw
Crown of Command
I know, a Slaughtermaster as general is risky, as i could lose him to a miscast, but i'm a very conservative caster, and rarely use more than 2-3 dice a spell (unless its a spell i REALLY want to get through, which i think losing my caster wouldnt matter, like a trollgut vs a bloodletter horde). I build him relatively defensively, but i know he's still very likely to die vs HKB and stuff like that. Dragonbane Gem is just icing on the cake, i really like the option of having this in a unit that could get regen, so i can really be a huge bunker in the unit corner.
Second, my BSB;
Talisman of Preservation
Due to lack of pts, I couldnt get him to an armor save of 4+, but i think T5 5+/4+ is still pretty solid vs most RnF. Tempted to remove the Ironcurse and replace it with Rock Eye, as it really helps figuring out what you're up against before actually entering combat, but i'm willing to take the risk of facing a very mean item for a 6+ Wardsave vs warmachine.
Third, my Hellheart carrier;
lvl2 of Beast
Beast is very nice for a lvl2. First, the signature spell is one of the best in the game, and i would never be scared to risk his life to cast that spell. He's a lvl2 so he has a chance at the 3 other powerful spell (+3T, +3S/A, -1 to hit). Firebelly is a nice model, but i have some problem with his increased price, and the fact the signature spell is pretty average..
The core ;
Look Out Gnoblar
Standard of Discipline
the character bunker, since a SM as general force me to get standard of discipline.
Redirector, deployment drop, annoyance, free combat res, they can do it all. I usually keep them off my list as i HATE painting them, but if they can prove their worth, i could definately find the motivation to paint them up.
The Special ;
2x3 Mournfang Cavalry
you read that right. 2 unit of 3. I personally really like them, with their pretty impressive armor, great movement, and decent attacks. I know they are prone to high S attacks, but my goal is to have them in small enough unit to keep them from fire magnet role.
Just as Trappers, they are anything but fighting force. When they are not running in the back trying to reach warmachine, they are in front redirecting big block.
The Rare ;
I'd consider a stonehorn, but his ASL aura is just too good to pass. I'm definately gonna try and alternate him and the stonehorn, but for now, Thundertusk proven his value, so he's on the list.
No brainer. anti-warmachine more than anything. their goal is to kill cannon before they kill me. If they fail, they are just gonna rush in and act as an expensive chariot.
So here's my list. Biggest weakness is the IG deathstar ; a single unit being most of my army. The rest can do a good job, but there's just no way i could recover loosing my IG. And, since people already cry about 2 cannon, i'm affraid what they'd say against my 1200 pts unit...