Sunday, November 23, 2014

Rules Break Down: Dropzone Commander Part 1

Hello everyone! Today I will be going over the rules for Hawk Wargames, Dropzone Commander. I am going to do this in two parts. First, I am going to cover Movement and shooting. in part Two I am going to cover Fliers and other rules that make this game special. I am going to do this by showing you things that similar while highlighting the thing that make this game special. So sit right back and hear a tale...

Let's start with the movement rules. They are generally your standard fair for movement. The twist being that your vehicle type will change how you react to terrain. For example, if you are a tank driving through rubble you are slowed by it but a skimmer just floats over it. Fliers are the core to the game, I mean it is called Dropzone Commander for a reason. Your transports are the fastest way to get from point A to point B and ignore most of the terrain.  They are not without risk though if you go back and look at the battle report of my Shaltari vs 2CE UCM you will notice transports can explode in a fiery conflagration of doom for those in them.

Which takes us to shooting. Here's where we get to the part everyone wants to read about. Dropzone has a large variety of weapons.  Each weapon has an Ac stat; this a weapons accuracy. Many of your anti-tank weapon will have an Ac hit on a 2+. That being said you would think the weapons would have a relatively short range, right? Unfortunately, that isn’t the case and a lot of these weapons have an infinite range. which brings us to counter measures.

Counter measure are broken down into two groups Active and Passive. Active counter measures are like the Phalanx CIWS on an aircraft carrier (pictured above). This will destroy incoming missiles if given enough time to react. Passive counter measures are force fields always surrounding the vehicle blocking or deflecting shots like an extra layer of armor made of energy. Each weapon has its range broken down into Range (Full) and Range (Countered). What that means is the anti-tank cannon can hit a building for anywhere on the table as long as he can see it but the tank next to it he needs to be a lot closer.

With Ac being a static number (2+ in my example above) this game would take 2 turns to destroy everything unless there are modifiers, right? For starters you have you normal modifiers like terrain, cover, etc. Of course with skimmers moving faster than conceivably possible in today's world and rules like hull down which allow tank to take advantage of cover around them, understanding how to use these modifiers is essential. As a fan of tank warfare, I think Hawk Wargames has done an excellent job of representing that aspect on the tabletop. I recommend anyone looking to get into this games take the extra time to study the rule regarding these modifiers to improve your survivability in this game.

Remember how I talked about transports being the core of Dropzone and how they can be risky? The reason is anti-aircraft weapons. They are the only weapons that can fire at transports and other aircraft. They have two ways they can fire. The first way is direct fire, meaning you have time to aim properly. This in fact happens on your turn. The second is called reactionary fire. What this mean is if an aircraft flies in between buildings aiming really isn’t an option. This happens on your opponents turn when you they move or shoot. The buildings get in the way. So, you fire where you think he will be.

And that wraps up part one of two for Dropzone Rules Break Down.  Please leave comment and criticisms. I would like to know your thoughts either good or bad. If you have any other questions about these rule feel free to contact me. If you would like me to do review of a specific game let me know and I will see if I can.

Can’t wait for the next game,


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