The stunning box art is the first sign of the high quality content contained within.
What can I say about DzC’s two-player starter? Well where do I start? At the beginning I suppose…
DzC appeared out of nowhere like a Shaltari Warstrider from an Eden medium gate.
David Lewis took Salute 2012 by storm with the big reveal of Dropzone Commander, with a full range of miniatures, scenery and rules all ready to go, and rarely seen or heard about prior to this, a product of three long sleepless years of secret work, which in itself was an achievement considering today’s modern media and the sheer number of blogs and crowd funding sites.
A little under a year and a half later and Hawk Wargames release a two-player starter set for DzC. And what a starter set it is.
Dropzone Commander is a 10mm mass battle game set in the year 2670.
Each player takes control of one of four factions, The Scourge, The United Colonies of Man, The Shaltari and The Post Human Republic.
The starter set comes with two skirmish sized armies for the Scourge and the UCM:
The Scourge are foul, neuro-parasitic lifeforms which can utterly dominate an unfortunate host, bending its life to its will. They thrive on the conquest and absorption of other races, their very mode of existence as potent a threat as their formidable battlefield technology. They are the galaxy’s ultimate predators.
Their breathtaking assimilation of the central planets, including Earth itself, has made them the primary threat to the very existence of mankind. Their methods of killing on the battlefield are abhorrent to witness, but violent death at the hand of their potent plasma weaponry can be as nothing compared to the dread of being taken alive.
Forged in desperation, united by adversity and resurgent in power, the UCM exists for a single purpose – to wrest mankind’s lost strongholds from the clutches of the Scourge. A collection of diverse and remote frontier worlds, the UCM is a restless cultural melting pot, bubbling with a righteous desire for vengeance.
One and a half centuries after the Scourge captured Earth and the Cradle Worlds, the UCM has expanded beyond all recognition. The greatest military force in the history of humanity has been assembled; a vast armada recently unleashed against enemies old and new.
for more information on the factions check out the Hawk Wargames site.
The Two player starter set contains everything you need to get up and running with DzC:
Way back in the day, games like Adeptus Mechanicus, Epic Space Marine and earlier boxed edition of 40k and Fantasy received top marks in reviews, not just for the game but as much because of the contents of the boxes which included, too different degrees, some scenery which is a staple part of any tabletop wargame. In more resent years this has become less and less and now it seems two-player starter sets contain only the bare essentials to give players a taste of the game concerned.
Then Hawk Wargames gave us a reasonably priced (£60 approximately) starter set, not only with full scenery and a 3′ x 4′ playing surface, but also two full-sized, all be it small, armies which can be used to play a complete, in every sense, game of DzC, they even threw in 10 dice, a measuring tape, all the tokens needed and several reference sheets. Along with this is the rule book which typically in other starter sets is a smaller condensed book but not Hawk Wargames, they gave us not only a full-sized book but it’s version 1.1 which according to their site:
REVISED 1.1 EDITION INFO:
A) All current Errata, rules changes and most of the Clarifications have been incorporated into the revised edition.
B) We’ve made some changes to points costs etc. These are available to download, but in general terms, gunships and special forces are now cheaper in points, and some smaller weapons, upgrade costs and scenarios have been slightly modified.
C) Version 1.1 now features a double page index, a new page detailing how to build a Battlegroup and a brand new, first person mini-story!
D) Text is now further from the spine away from the centre of the book to increase readability, and the blue ‘Rules’ margin colour has now been split into three distinct shades for Background, Rules and Scenarios.
E) Paper quality is improved, with a totally uniform laminate texture throughout.
The army figures themselves are injected moulded plastic resin which seems very durable,not overly brittle and takes paint well and the detail in the minis is awesome. During assembly of the armies with my wargaming Padawan “Methus” he continually made remarks on the detail on the minis – at one point he exclaimed “OMG you can’t be serious this APC actually has a suspension”
They even threw in a measuring tape.
In an earlier interview/unboxing with David J Lewis when talking about some of the details of the minis on www.beastsofwar.com he stated “We could do it, so we did it”. This really sums up this set in a nut shell they did it because they could.
Ten full-colour pre-cut, pre-folded card buildings in ten different designs.
Ok I realize by now this all sounds either too good to be true or I’m just an overexcited fanboy so let’s get to the nitty gritty.
The contents took Methus and I about two and a half hours to fully assemble so, if like most people, you lead a busy life get stuck in on your day off if you want to get some games in.
The buildings are made of a light card stock and will need glued and strengthened or they may not last very long.
A few of the thinner components for the models had some warping but a drop of hot water sorted that out quite easily.
Full set of card templates and Scenario Object tokens.
UCM and Scourge reference sheets with stats, army composition and quick reference tables and starter scenario and turn sequence prompt sheet.
2x Urban Streets Posters, will join together in 4 different ways to create a 48 “x 33” road layout both posters feature stunning artwork on the reverse face one of the box art and the other is the cover art from the rule book.
The complete contents.
Ok the last negative thing I can say is the Scourge Dropships are not exactly my favourite models in the world but that’s just my own personal taste and despite this I think after playing one game and reading further into the rules I’ll stick with the Scourge instead of the UCM as I really like their play style (fast, hard hitting and aggressive).
This is by far one of the best two-player starter sets I’ve ever had the pleasure of opening with a completely fresh background and fast-paced gameplay along with an over abundance of additional units available from Hawk Wargames to expand your factions of choice.
4.5 out of 5 nerds