Dropzone Commander Introduction
Whether you are new to the wide, wide world of tabletop miniature games, or have just been living under a rock for the last couple of months, you might not of heard of the latest game from Hawk Wargames, Dropzone Commander. Dropzone Commander is a 10mm scale sci-fi miniatures game that takes place during the 27th century. The uniqueness of the game comes from it’s focus on rapid deployment using airborne and ground-based transport vehicles. Currently the game has 4 factions, each with its own unique play style. The figures for each faction are also very well sculpted and have an excellent level of detail for being 10mm scale.
The game utilizes an alternating activation system, where players take turns activating battle groups. During my years of playing miniatures games, I have come to admire this method of unit activation, as it goes a long way towards eliminating large amounts of downtime while your opponent takes their turn. Depending on the size of the game being played, each player will typically field 3 to 7 battle groups. The below photos for each army represent a 3 battle group sized force. This means when designing an army, a player can tailor his force to his play style. Are you the type of commander who prefers to overwhelm his foe with a large number of cheaper units, thereby having more activations and more flexibility, or do you prefer taking elitist, high costed units that can weather the best your opponent has to throw your way, quickly leveling the field to compensate for the fewer activations you receive? Now let’s take a quick look at the 4 different factions.
The United Colonies of Mankind (UCM) represent the descendants of the survivors of the Scourge invasion of Earth and the Core Worlds. It UCM was built with one goal in mind, to retake the worlds lost to the Scourge and deliver Mankind back to their rightful home. In game terms, the UCM is very easy to relate to, as the figures aren’t that much of a departure from classic military vehicle designs.
The Scourge are a race of parasitic lifeforms, bonding with the bodies of the races they conquer. During the current timeline of the game, the Scourge have invaded Earth and the Core Worlds, forcing humanity to flee to their under-developed fringe worlds. Their vehicles and aircraft have a very organic appearance to them, presenting a variety of interesting paint scheme ideas.
The Post-Human Republic are the descendants of a small group of humans who took heed of a warning that the Scourge would invade Earth and the Core Worlds and fled to an unknown part of space. They returned over 150 years later, on the eve of the UCM’s military operation to retake Earth and the Core Worlds. They are no longer simply humans, but cyborgs. The PHR army uses a vast number of bipedal walkers instead of tanks.
The Shaltari Tribes first made contact with humanity after humans developed FTL (Faster Than Light) travel. They are a very ancient race, and initially assisted humanity with discovering new worlds to colonize. It eventually became apparent that the Shaltari that humans came into contact with were just one tribe of many, and that they had planned on using the humans to aid them in their fight against a rival tribe. The Shaltari army utilizes “Gates” to teleport their forces onto and off of the battlefield.
The initial appeal of the game to me was in the models. The level of detail at this scale is excellent, and it opens new opportunities for painters who want to try their hand at new painting techniques that aren’t used in traditional 28mm/28mm heroic scale figures. As I delve more and more into Dropzone Commander, I will continue to bring you my thoughts on the game and how I feel it stacks up against other tabletop miniatures games.
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