Sunday, March 25, 2012

Dystopian Wars, Part 2

Yesterday we talked about models, today we talk about the rules.

Alright, the name of the game in Dystopian Wars is rolling handfuls of dice while making explosion and gun noises. The basic mechanic is take a certain number of dice(Attack Dice AD), roll them and count the number of certain results. This is then compared to the amount of damage that a model can withstand(Damage/Critical Rating DR/ CR), if the number of hits equals or exceeds the damage rating, a hit (Hull Points HP) is done, if the number of hits equals or exceeds the critical rating a critical hit is done, and you roll on a critical table for bad stuff.

The fun part of all these handfuls of of dice is that except in a very few instances they explode on a 6, which counts as two hits and can be re-rolled. Allowing even the most puny frigate to get a lucky punch and sink a battleship. This is also consistent throughout all types of attacks, cannons, torpedoes, rockets, tesla coils and friggin lasers. Except to hit the tiny flyer tokens(various types of normal sized airplanes), those dice do not explode, though on a 6 one of the tiny flyer tokens is destroyed

Here is an example of a stat card to better illustrate these delightfully simple mechanics above.
Here you can see the attack and defense stats I just talked about.
You have a weapon grid that shows the number of dice that are rolled at certain "range bands" each of 8 inches. So range band one is from the ship to 8 inches, range band 2 is from 8 to 16 inches and so on. With the maximum of 32 inch range these little ships can hit a rather large territory. However most weapons roll more dice the closer they are, but some get more effective the farther you are away like the rockets the Americans and Japanese are fond of.

Also on this card you have the movement, Assault Points(AP), Anti Air (AA), Concussion Charges( CC), and Ram Rating(RR) of the ship. Assault Points are used to board other ships with rocket marines. Yes all infantry in the game (though they are much too small to see at the 1/1200 scale) have jet packs! These troops are resisted with the AA rating of the ship being attacked, with hits negating hits from the marines. Damage is then done to the AP score of the ship being attacked. If reduced to 0 the attacker captures the ship as a prize.

AA is also used against rockets and airplane attacks that are close enough. CC is used against torpedoes and submarines.
The back of the stat card lists the Model Assigned Rules, special rules that make the models more than just moving handfuls of dice to throw. The type and class of the model and what percentage of your force can be that type. As well as the firing arcs for all weapons and the number of models in a squadron.

Here are examples of the different firing arcs for different types of weapons. 

Copyright Spartan Games. 
The firing arcs look like a lot of where the game is played, your movement sets up the shots, you make turns and move so your guns can do their job. You can have a huge broadside and rockets and tesla coils, but none of it matters unless the enemy is in the firing arc for those guns. 
Rockets, tesla coils, and torpedos typically are in fixed arcs. So that means straight out from that facing of the model, it is the width of the model or base for land models. Turrets have more flexibility with targeting, but their firepower can be reduced as you take damage, whereas rockets and torpedoes aren't. 

Now for a little more on the combat mechanics now that we've talked about the exploding dice and firing arcs. Guns are also divided into Primary and Secondary weapons, this affects the roll to hit or 
The normal dice roll for an ordnance attack (guns, rockets, torpedoes etc.) hits on a 4, 5, or 6. A red six is rather cleverly used in the rules to denote that this type of roll explodes, if the to hit number does not include a 6, then the dice roll does not explode on a 6. 

There are certain situations that can affect the number needed to score a hit, such as various MAR's that add or subtract from a roll. Other ships and terrain can block or obscure line of sight, this reduces the number of attack dice that a ship uses. 

Alright everyone, that is it for now, there is a lot to this game, but it seems like it all meshes quite well. 

Monday, March 19, 2012

Dystopian Wars, Part 1

Long time no type my dear readers,

We have been quite busy with the whole law school portion of this blog.

But that didn't stop me from heading down to the wonderland that is Austin, TX. The State's mecca of culture, government and most importantly gaming. I was able to pick up the starter fleet for the Federated States of America faction in Dystopian Wars.

Today is about the models, I'll get into the game and the fluff later this week.

I love the look of the models, that is what drew me in the first place. I grew up on a lake where we used to have a paddle wheel river boat that did tour cruises, so those big armored wheels spoke to me.

Here is my first completed model, one of a squadron of cruisers, with either a shield or kinetic generator, there is no express differentiation in the book between the two visually, one of the few straight problems with the rules.

Holy crap the details on this little resin piece. Rivets, windows, doors, wood planking. The detail on this is beautiful. There was minimal flash, just on the corners between and along the edges. The only casting error on 13 ships, 10 flyer tokens with tiny airplanes and 2 metal bombers was a small bubble missing on one of the smoke stacks on a cruiser. That's it, ONE problem. Spartan games makes GW look like the resin amateurs that they are. All of the promises made about finecast are represented in Spartan stuff, this is what GW wishes they could do with resin. Also, the prices are not bad for this stuff at all, this starter box with a whole small fleet(about 725 points worth) was $54.99. 

Another shot to show the crazy detail on these things, check out the fucking stairs and catwalks! Also, door and windows, I've not decided how to paint the tiny windows yet. 

Here is a front on view, this is the same cannon as on the battleship, it's not as powerful but still delightfully huge. 

Finally we have the two other cruisers that I am working on, with the other two add on pieces, the other generator and the standard rocket battery. 

There we have it folks, a start on a Dystopian Wars fleet. Once you figure out the colors you want to use, and get used to to how small and detail packed these things are I feel like I could paint them up pretty rapidly.