Friday, 11 March 2016

Establishing A Force: Resistance

It has been a while, but it is finally time to scrape the rust of my lazy fingers and bring all you budding survivalists the next entry in my 'Establishing A Force' series; Let's talk Resistance!

When I mention rust, it wasn't by accident, oh nono, that was a clever segue my friends, as in the Resistance you will be seeing a whole load of rust! It will be coming at you in the form of old dishevelled and re-purposed cars and wagons, fossilised helicopters and positively antique tanks! Let's take a moment to imagine driving a Hannibal into the Antiques Roadshow and crushing Fiona Bruce into human jam; now there's an episode I'd tune in for (this is a terribly English reference, all you foreigners will have to Google it)! They even have a battlegroup name after the effect; Rusted Fist!

For all Warlords looking at playing the Resistance, these are the units you will be deploying to take back the cradle worlds from the loving embrace of the Scourge. Engineering feats of the past and vehicles truly built to last are the foundation of your rebel alliance. The Resistance are truly unique in Dropzone, in that due to their 'ancient' technology they do not deploy forces in the same manner as the other four races. This difference means that whether you are new to Dropzone, or a veteran general, they will feel brand new to play with. Before we run through the differences, have a quick shufty at this 1k list:

This roster is built around a strong core of Infantry, and the bombastic AT weapons of the Cyclones and Thunderstorm. At a glance it may appear to actually be a little light on troops, but bearing in mind that Freeriders can be used to fill an Infantry role you will find yourself adequately supplied for missions at a 1000 points. In regards to AT, the Thunderstorm may seem a little over-indulgent at this points level, but currently an Alexander with Lifthawk (plus obligatory AA upgrade) actually costs more! On top of this a Storm of Thunder is infinitely more useful, providing more consistent AT, a much larger threat range and more points for Focal Points. Convinced? Good.

The lists shortcoming is the lack of dedicated AA. Although Gun Wagons aren't expensive I didn't deem it necessary to have six in a 1000 point list, simply because you're unlikely to be playing against too many Aircraft. If you know the mission or your opponents list however, there is certainly wiggle room for the second unit by removing some Freeriders.

Whilst we're on a roll, it's time to check out the 1500 point list to expand into:

This nice and straight forward (if not admittedly a little vanilla) list is the one I took to Invasion. It is very much a list for those who want to learn the nuances of New Troy's finest, rather than plunging head first into four Barrel Bombers and ten bases of Hells Angels. Let's take a wee look at the reasoning behind the selection, and noticeable differences between playing Resistance and all four other races.

A Penny Saved Is A Thunderstorm Earned
Or at least that's how the saying should go. This list uses the full compliment of the joint best value for money starter box Hawk produce (the other being Shaltari). You will use everything in this box at some point, and some of the units will never fall out of the army. You'll always need Gun Wagons for instance! By using all your starter units you will save a little on investing in new units. Now that's maths your wallet (and gaming widow in your life) can understand!

No Light Dropships
Each of the other four races have the choice of mounting some or all of their Infantry in light dropships, which are quick but fragile, and tend to be the chosen method of transport for most Generals as they open up a host of redeployment options. Being the unique force of rascals that you are, you have no light dropships available to you. Instead, you will instead be deploying troops via the survivable Kraken hovercraft and the giant Lifthawk dropship. As with all things, this has its pros and cons.

The Lifthawk and Kraken are both incredibly durable for their roles, and can take a pounding before they are removed from the war zone. For the Lifthawk this means you can carry all your troops within it without too many worries, whereas in a light dropship you are always looking over your shoulder. The Kraken however goes one better than just being hard to kill, and can also contribute to focal points. This feature has literally won me games! They may only be 38 points each, but when a couple are thrown at a FP they are very difficult to remove from it and will typically end up contesting or even winning the objective for you. The Kraken is also quick at 10", and can shoot its token E9 cannon for a bit of demo or light armour sniping after zooming about into position.

I haven't even mentioned the best thing about the Kraken; hovercraft's can have units deploy from them and still shoot in the same turn. This is a mechanic which is only available on three units so far, this, the Leviathan and the Thunderstorm, and can help pull out some ridiculous alpha strikes (more on that later).

All of these attributes cost precious points however, and you will often find yourself spending more on Infantry than perhaps you want too. The Lifthawk for instance must take three squads in three Jacksons, which is a minimum battle group spend of 244 points, and that's before we start adding exotic troops or vehicle upgrades. Not only is it expensive but it can also be restrictive, as all three squads deploy from the same dropship, meaning you'll need to plan ahead a little. Busses deploying from Krakens can also be annoyingly slow, so always be wary of your maximum deployment range.

Predatory AA
This list is packed full of dynamic Anti-Air, which is both manoeuvrable and (for the most part) reliable. Jumping back to my point about Hovercraft's, a Gun Wagon which deploys from a Kraken at full throttle has a colossal threat range of 29" (5"+3"+3"+18")! Each squad may only deal out six shots each, but hitting on 2+ means you are likely to get more net hits than other races' AA.

I have also given my Lifthawks the AA upgrade, to give them a little more utility. The dropships are MF8" and I have caught out a number of light dropships who thought they were safe, and even sniped down a few fast movers!

Doing The Splits
I've noticed a theme amongst most Warlords rosters, in that they tend to pack all their vets into busses and use them to make drive-bys (units can shoot from the inside of a bus, at a penalty) which I've been on the raw end off many a time. I have split mine between the bus and Jackson battlegroups to add a little unpredictably and speed to my exotic deployment. Deploying from a Lifthawk allows me to get the upper hand in CQBs I may have previously lost, as fighters are very squishy. Also, I may have been on the raw end of Vets making drive-bys, but I have also melted a few into the pavement in return...

If you fancy screaming 'Witness Me!!' and using your Vets in busses go for it, it's been tried and tested to work by many others!

My Tank Is Harder Than Yours
All your AT is hardy, and a pain in the hole to remove. Hannibals have a reputation for being difficult to destroy, and the Thunderstorm can also be a pig with its 9 DP and +1 to hit modifier. Your cyclones are also pretty survivable, as A6 2DP aircraft are not to be sniffed at. This layer of extra toughness means you can be a little bold in your deployment, although be sure not to cross the line into carelessness. High energy weapons are rampant at the moment, and you could end up being on the hot end of an E11 or 12 shot.

Allied Or Feral?
Much like Angelina Jolie, this list swings both ways. By this I of course mean that there are no faction specific units in it. I played it as an Allied list because I prefer the card set; Allied tends to give you a more balanced draw of sneaky weaponry and CQB buffs, and also two Brave Gambles which are just a Quick Thinking in disguise. The Feral adds more IED and is heavy on combat cards. Just pick whichever takes your fancy!

Overall you're on course to have some fun with these guys. You may find deployment a little awkward at the beginning with so many models with large silhouettes to deal with, but persevere and you'll get there. As mentioned before, Resistance are a playing experience in DzC like no other and definitely worth a go, even if you just borrow an army from a friendly War Boy or Girl.

If you have any questions just comment below!


  1. Nice go trough about the Resistance! I tried the Alexander once after Invasion but it so boring to play with compared to the Thunderstorm. So even if the Thunderstorm get nerfed I think I'm going to stick with it...
    Just now I'm playing around with a list with two Lifthawks with a lot of exotic infantry. Works very well in objective-missions but I need to try some focal point missions.

  2. Good write up Dan.
    Just on Q. In your 1000pts list, why do you choice to go with 4 battlegroups instead of 5?

    Cheers, Thunder

    1. No reason really. The Freeriders can be split up into 2 BGs if it tickles your fancy. Also the change to Gun Wagons will add a BG.

  3. This should definitely be useful for a friend of mine, who's new to DZC and went with the Resistance specifically because I play Scourge.

    I was perusing your faction guides, when an idea struck me. You have posts on the units of each faction and their uses, but nothing like that for the famous comanders. So I was wondering: would you guys consider doing a unit overview on the famous commanders?

    1. I'm pretty sure that none of us have actually used a famous commander, barring a huge battle royale we took part in, so it'd be a little tricky to write a review. They should be used in 2k pts + really, and none of us tend to have the time to play that size game sadly!

  4. What's wrong with Fiona Bruce?