Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Space Samurai and Bikes

Infinity, Infinity, Infinity........ where do I start?
The beginning would probably be the best idea.

I have known about the game for a while, when I say "known about" what I mean is, I was aware that there was a game called Infinity. I have always been predominantly a 'one game' kind of guy, as in, I will play one game as my main game to the detriment of all others. I dabble with the odd casual game in and around my main game too. I started with 40k back in 1995! I played that until the end/half way through 6th edition when my interest in it was really waning, I then picked up Dropzone Commander and have played that pretty religiously from the end of 2012 until now(ish).

Alex (over at the Epitude Rusk blog) is a massive fan boy of Infinity. He has a butt-load of models and even more scenery. He bullied me into gave me an intro a long while ago maybe early 2015 or late 2014ish. I really didn't enjoy it. In fact I'd go so far as to say I hated it.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Learning This Game Could Take Forever...

There's been a rather large void to fill in my life since Dropzone Commander has not just taken a back seat in my gaming car, but instead has been tossed in the trunk and forgotten about, rolling around like an old, half-sucked Chupa Chup collecting fluff and losing its flavour (Cola, if you were wondering). With the passenger seat of the Gamesmobile now empty I have been looking keenly for any hitchhikers to play with, like a sinister old man from a horror movie. In my wake of hitchers I have had the fortune to pull over and give a lift to Corvus Beli's game of anime science-fiction; Infinity.

Never before have I encountered a game which has gorged itself to obesity on such complex and layered rules, and gorgeous but fiddly (some would say badly cast) miniatures. A game which clearly didn't care about the difficulty curve for new starters, or for that matter players with an intermediate grasp of the rules. A game which feels more like an RPG where not just the GM has to learn every little detail, but each player who wants to have a moderate chance of winning (and for some, a chance of enjoying) a contest.

Infinity is the most unashamedly decadent game I have ever played. Corvus Beli have cultivated a true Beast of wargaming, and clearly there is a niche for it, as this Beast is confidently galloping forward and chomping down gamers left and right.

Wednesday, 25 October 2017

TTCombat Acquires Hawk Wargames

It's been a while since I have penned anything Hawk related. Penned anything really, actually, I've been a bit slack of late. Sos 'bout dat. I assumed my next post on a subject associated with our favourite bird of prey studio would be related with Dropzone Commander V2, and although this article is a little about that, it's mostly about the ground breaking news (as of yesterday, that's still pretty quick for us at OB) that has left the best of us gobsmacked, shell shocked, and 'in all of a tizz'.

TTCombat, the wargaming wing of Troll Trader, have acquired Hawk Wargames.

I've always loved the word 'acquired'. It's just a fancy word for 'I've taken this, and it was yours but now it's mine. Hah.' I associate it with the Resident Evil franchise, where you basically either steal or loot gubbins by 'acquiring' it. Lucky that punk Leon didn't get shot, no good looting punk. I'm not suggesting that TTCombat looted Hawk, this is just an observation of the word...

Monday, 2 October 2017

Goodbye DzC Version 1: The Long Kiss Goodnight

Check out my mad MS paint skillz!

The end of an era, the passing of an old friend......

September 24th 2017 will be forever marked as the last day of the last Invasion for Dropzone Commander version 1. I will certainly miss it, but out of the ashes will rise a new version. A better version? Who knows at this time.

I digress, I want to talk about Invasion, and why the hell not. I won. Again.

For those that have listened to the Orbital Bombardment podcast, I have been planning a ‘secret project’ for a couple of years now. This happened to be an L.A.P.D. themed Allied Resistance army.

As this was the last chance to play the original Dropzone Commander I wanted to finish them and take them, alas I did not finish painting the army.

Friday, 22 September 2017

Autumn Invasion 2017: The Lists

This was taken many Autumns ago, in the fire of our youth
'All the leaves are brown and the sky is grey, I'm out for a walk on an Autumn's day, I'd be freezing off my nuts in Aberdeen, Croydon dreaming on such a winter's day.' - Croydon Dreaming, The Zone's and Fleet's

It's that time of year again. It's raining, it's windy, it's getting cold, and every single person is complaining about the weather. I mean rainier, windier, colder, and moanier of course, after all, our Summer's are English. Its's Autumn everyone, and with it we greet Hawk's annual September tournament; Autumn Invasion! If Hawk are able to release V2 this year it will also be the last V1 Invasion tournament, which heralds the end of an era!

Three of the six of us are going this time, Alex, Joe, and Mike, and is customary I have all their lists to cast my miniature, laser-sporting, electric, beady eye over and critique in this version for the very last time. Let's get on with it before I well up and romance about the good times...

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Upcoming Hawk Tournaments & Events

Normally I would I would put my detective hat on and scour the interwebs for details of all the upcoming Zone and Fleet events taking place in the near future for our podcast's news section, but with us having not podded for a while I thought it would be a good idea to list them on here for you instead!

There isn't a huge amount happening towards the end of the year for either system, but for those perhaps willing to travel to an event you may still be able to get your Hawk fix by the end of 2017!

The biggest and most immediate event is Hawk's flagship Dropzone Commander tournament, Autumn Invasion, which is coupled with their Open Day. I think there might be a few spaces left in the tournament (which unlike past events has been capped at 40 people) but even if you don't want to play it is worth popping down to have an ear bash with the Hawk crew; who knows, maybe more news nuggets for V2 will fall from their kangaroo-like info pouches!

Monday, 11 September 2017

How To Run A Successful Blood Bowl League

There are few things in life more difficult, frustrating and often fruitless than trying to arrange for a group of gamers to have a series of constructed games and events, and feed important results back to you in a timely manner. The only examples I can think of which would be more difficult, frustrating and fruitless would be using your vote for the good of the country, telling your wife that "we can't have any more pets", and trying to forget the lyrics to Barbie Girl.

Every club and friendship group needs that person though, that woman or man who is prepared to pour the same level of energy into an upcoming league or campaign as an engine boy shovelling coal on the Titanic. Often though, like the Titanic, the best laid plans will be sunk by an unforeseen event, and the most common iceberg for gamers is long term commitment. I don't blame people for this though, as promising a lot of your hours on a single system for a prolonged length of time can be hard, especially if you find yourself not enjoying it or if 'real life' just happens to get in the way.

After the re-launch of Blood Bowl I decided to take the plunge and arrange a league; the M.A.D. Open! We're now at the very end of the season with only three games left to be played (one Semi-Final, Final and 2nd Runner Up games) and the season went unusually well, with all the participating coaches being very receptive to the format which helped things run smoothly. We had sixteen teams split over two divisions, with ten players finishing all of their required games (which is amazing, more on that later) and a total of forty five games being played in total!

Before we get into the meat and gravy of the post, I recommend having a quick surf around the league's website;

Here is a list of why I think it went so well, and tips to get your league or campaign up and running!

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

The Occupiers of Atlantia

The crew on route to Invasion. I think this may have been taken whilst we were being given our hosts.
As is customary with all tournaments, and was noted in my last blog post, the three weeks before Invasion were spent mostly with me glued to my sofa painting tiny blocks of shaped resin. Normally for a gamer this would be a delight; to have a solid reason to chill out (or cotch as the street kids say) on your sofa, listen to podcasts and paint your hobby. However, it gets to a point when this stops being the case. In fact I'm going to let a selfie of myself from the day before Invasion highlight just how fed up with painting blue and pink I was:

Changing Times

Those of you who have astute observational skills and superb attention to detail (or have either saved links to the blog or clicked a GoGogle link) will have noticed a couple of minor changes to the site:

  • Firstly our URL has changed from DZCBlog to OrbitalBombardmentGamers. 
  • Secondly we have a shiny new email address, 
  • Thirdly, none of the page links to our old posts work (more about that later).

We have been blogging specifically about Dropzone Commander and Hawk Wargames for nearly four years now, with our first instalment landing on the 12th Feburary 2014! I have thoroughly enjoyed my time writing exclusively about Dropzone and I hope that our posts continue to help drive people into the hobby and game (well, when the links work of course).

However, which is a fancy way of saying 'but', the content driving the blog has somewhat diminished over the last year, which I'm sure regular visitors will have noticed through the distinct downturn in posts and podcasts going up on the site. It's no secret that Hawk haven't been 'focused' on their main game system for a while, and of course we now all know that this was due to the internal and ongoing development of Version 2. All this downtime led to myself and the lads investing less time in Dropzone and more time in other systems, such as Blood Bowl, Guild Ball, and Infinity, and this has driven us to the following decision;

Orbital Bombardment will no longer be a specific Dropzone Commander blog. We will now be posting and pod casting about our general miniature interests and any games which take our fancy. 

I want to be very clear, we are still playing and enjoying Dropzone Commander and that we will certainly be covering it as V2 drops and thereafter, but we have all been in the hobby since what feels like we can talk (or at least moan about all the bullshit) and of course play other games. Personally, I want to get back to writing as I miss it! I enjoy the process and lately have applied my creative indulgences to our local Blood Bowl league ( for those interested).

As for the site, it is a bit of a work in process and as mentioned previously our links are not working correctly, which is a colossal fist sized pain in the arsehole. I'll get it fixed soon as I work a page overhaul for the various game systems I expect us to be covering in the future.

I hope you all enjoy the new world, and are looking forward to all the new rules and mechanics for us (Mike edit; Dan) to call bullshit on!

Friday, 21 July 2017

Dropzone Commander: 2nd Edition

This is my new favourite piece of artwork. It is just bloody lovely

Official news, it's coming, this year too!!!

Here is Hawk's official statement:

"Hawk Wargames is excited to announce Dropzone Commander: 2nd Edition!

The current Dropzone Commander system is highly regarded and we are working on bringing you a new edition that retains its excellent core mechanics whilst improving many aspects to reflect warfare in the 27th Century.

We are in the stages of alpha testing the proposed changes and a closed beta will also take place with our Hawk Talon scheme. We expect a release in Q4 2017 with a release date announced closer to the time.

2nd Edition will bring balance to existing units and enhance a player's collection, not invalidate it. We want every unit to be playable. New units are in development which will be previewed over the next few months.

Beasts of War have interviewed Dave and they will have a video for you on Monday with more details including proposed changes and even more new artwork, including this incredible Archangel squadron!

Make sure to spread the news by sharing this post and let us know in the comments what you're looking forward to in the new edition."

Well, we are all giddy with excitement and really can't wait.

What do you want to see?

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Critical Engagement 2017 - The Breakdown

What the hell is Pete afraid of? 
So what does it all mean? Well not a lot really, but we had a bloody brilliant time.

We had 20 players turn up on the day (including myself as the odd man). Unfortunately we had 2 drop outs in the week before and one no-show on the day (mentioning no names Hawk Sean!!! [Dan edit; you clearly mentioned a name there, Hawk Sean. Right there. It says Sean. Sean, of the Hawk. Seanus Hawkimus. SeanbotXX6k. Sean The Russian.]).

We set up 10 beautiful tables, with ALL custom scenery painted - no bare MDF in sight! A huge thanks to everyone who contributed to the team effort to get it all looking pretty and an extra big thank you to Betty for all the scatter terrain and bunkers.

Friday, 30 June 2017

Scatter Terrain Rules

Shamelessly stolen from Alex's blog, Epitude Rusk

It's almost time for us to stop banging on, and on, and on about Critical Engagement; however, that said, it is not quite time, so before I get to the meat of this post, I just have to say...

If you have no plans on Saturday 8th July, come down to London and play some Dropzone Commander with us at Critical Engagement! If you do have plans, cancel them, and make new ones with us!

Details can be found on this post and on Facebook!

Thursday, 22 June 2017

OB Podcast Episode 20: Bigger Isn't Always Better

You look like you need to hit the gym! And by gym, I of course I mean our gym, Orbital Gymbardment. And when visiting the Orbital Gymbardment I will refer you to our two main (and only) areas, the massage parlour and the sauna, in the later of which you can join us for our latest podcast episode!

These intros are becoming increasingly tenuous, right? Maybe its the heat in the UK melting my brain, which is currently dripping from my tear ducts onto my keyboard. How do you get brain juice out of a keyboard?

Come and relax in the hot box with us whilst we have a chatet about upcoming events (including Critical Engagement), our time at the UK Games Expo and why we are running a 1000 point tournament, and more importantly why you should try the smaller points size out!

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

The Right Expo-sure.

Well hello there my spaceship loving fans, I am back.

The UK Games Expo 2017 is over and we are all hibernating as the four days of gaming, drinking, and generally being a bit silly has come to end. Also the weather here is like a normal English summer... RAIN!!!

Thursday, 1 June 2017


Me (joe) and Ed are travelling up to the UK Games Expo in Birmingham., and are both attending Hawk's largest to date Dropfleet commander tournament in the UK!

The tournament is on Saturday 3rd June, during the  UK Games Expo that runs from Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th. We are driving up on Today along with Mike and Sir [edi: Madam] Bethany to get settled into our surroundings and wet our throats a little, or maybe even a lot.

It's a 1 day tournament of 1250 points, clash sized, playing 3 games of 3 hours long (yeah its going to be a long day, but a fun and very rewarding one). Hawk have released a Tournament Pack and an FAQ just in time for this event which I believe is to add in some much needed balance to the game.

Currently they have 34 players signed up. Only just a few months ago they increased the player limit to 64 from 32, so there is still some space to get in on the action. I'm not too sure on how the scoring system is going to work with just 3 games, but the boys down at Hawk are a smart bunch, and am sure they'll figure something out.

Friday, 26 May 2017

Critical Engagement 17: Missions and Prizes

Greetings valued readership

As I mentioned in a previous post about our annual tournament Critical Engagement '17, I have put together the missions pack.

Also we have locked in some of the finest event sponsors for prize support.... exciting times!

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Invaders, They're Coming Over The Hills

Until I looked up the lyrics for the classic Iron Maiden, British Heavy Metal track 'Invaders' to paraphrase the title of this post, I had no idea that the perfect lyric "Invaders...Marauding" existed in the second chorus. Either Iron Maiden are fans of Dropzone Commander and managed to leave a note in the past for themselves (like a reverse Blue Peter time pod), Dave Lewis is a secret-but-not-so-secret Iron Maiden fan, or it's all just a big, rather deflating coincidence.

Anyway; Invaders... Marauding.

I wanted to experiment with something a little 'alternative' in my Scourge list and general army meta, and with Coastal Assualt approaching I deemed it a more than adequate staging ground for this test. What test? Why, using Invaders in a Scourge list of course!

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Coastal Assault 2017

Sunday bloody Sunday............

No-one likes waking early on a Sunday, especially not me, but it was for a good cause; I got to play Dropzone all day whooo hoo

4 of us departed from the penthouse apartment of OB towers in Orbital Bombarmentonville and descended on Brighton for the third year running.

Just outside of Brighton, we all had a major dilemma. Do we sack off the tournament and head on to the 'Ladyboys of Bangkok' live cabaret show or carry on as planned........

Friday, 28 April 2017

New Mission: Forward Air Base V2

Took me a couple of goes to understand this one #brainpower
As the great Sun Tzu (great name, great hair, and just generally a great attitude) once said, back in the 80's I think, "No plan survives contact with the enemy". He was of course chatting about war, but this is a philosophy that you can attribute to a large number of different items too, for instance; No fruit survives contact with the work fruit-bowl, No toothpaste survives contact with my teeth, No Tory promise survives contact with reality, and this is true as well with missions design; No mission design survives contact with your friends, they will gut it and ruin it and deform your vision into something completely obtuse and repugnant. It's okay really, they haven't been too bad, and actually although I wouldn't like to admit it to them, they've been quite useful!

We are ready to roll out the second version of both our new missions, and I have for you today Forward Air Base V2!

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

New Ships At Salute 2017

Salute has now been and gone, and with it not a whole lot of new information from Hawk about their plans for the year. This was to be expected however, and I'm not too concerned about their outlay; they do live in the thirteenth hour after all!

In addition to the last minute reveal of their Dropzone Commander show only model for this year, the Shaltari Scorpion, there were also some 3D Masters for a couple of new Cruisers (correct the classes if I'm wrong in the comments, I'm only guessing on the size of the ships) on display!

Friday, 21 April 2017

Critical Engagement 2017

It's here, it's finally here.... Probably the greatest tournament known to man, woman or beast!

As last year was such a success we will be doing it again, same format but with some different missions. We had 24 players last July, let's see if we can top that.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

New Mission: Forward Air Base

A week has gone by, allowing you lots of time to observe, bite into and digest our first new mission, Civilian Extraction. How did it taste? Like a juicy, medium-rare steak? Or perhaps more like a sweet piece of mama's pumpkin pie? Or maybe you didn't like it, and it tasted more like a glass of hot bin juice.

How ever you liked last week's mission, I have a new, fresh and steamy serving for your palate to experience today; Forward Air Base!

Monday, 10 April 2017

New Mission: Civilian Extraction

Other games may have distracted us from our blogging efforts for a while (although in the most golden of ironies not Ed), but I can report that we are trundling along in the background and still getting ready for Critical Engagement in July. One of my favourite parts of Critty E (as the event is broadly known on the streets, just ask your local rude boy for confirmation) is the freedom we have on rule and mission creation. After all, it's our tournament, and we'll do whatever we ruddy well like!

With that in mind, I have created the following mission, Civilian Extraction, which features a brand new rule and objective type to fight over; Survivor Markers and Survivor Objectives!

Monday, 27 March 2017

Developing the Warzone: Industrial Beginnings

So with Critical Engagement in a few months we've all decided that we want some more variance in the terrain on offer in the tournament just trying to break up the monotony of the urban environment. I'd like to make two boards, one industrial and the other a little more rural. So the easiest one to start with, in my mind at least, is the industrial one.

Friday, 3 March 2017

Developing The Warzone: Resistance Barricades part 1

One criticism of Dropzone I've heard is that although the game is tremendously cinematic with it's towering 10mm cityscapes, it loses some of the theme when you start to focus on the terrain and debris in the battlefield, or rather lack thereof. Although it's possible that the Scourge operate a 'tidy desk' policy on a world-wide scale, using a few of their years in charge to focus on breeding bin-men and ladies to clean our dirty streets (ideas are sparking for a Scourge road sweeper vehicle; the Sweepressor), it is unlikely that even in this scenario all the debris would have been cleared, due to sanitation strikes and the like.

It's with this in mind that I am approaching the beginning of our preparation for Critical Engagement, our yearly summer tournament. The tournament may be in July, which is so far away the Daily Mail haven't even started scare mongering about this being the 'hottest summer on record' yet, but I would like to see the streets of Orbitalbombardmentonville strewn with the debris of war and years left behind. So, we had better get started on making some scenery then, hadn't we!

Monday, 27 February 2017

Ed and Joe Drop into Warboar

We've selected Bettys new hair do.
Dropfleet has just had an official tournament in the dark grey area of London town known as Bromley. The tournament was held as a way of seeing how players were playing the latest work of the Hawk chaps, but it was also held to playtest the new command cards for Dropfleet.

Monday, 20 February 2017

This FAQ Is So On Fleet...

So Hawks difficult second album is here and as with any table-top game there are inconsistencies and typos. Now I, personally, am a big fan of Dropfleet. I love the models and the cinematic style of the system. It’s clever use of signature and scan mechanic makes for a very interesting way of looking at the concept of ‘Ranges’.

Now we have a lovely bunch of clarifications and a few little errata to help out. SO I’ll go through them and pick out the major ones (In my humble opinion at least) and mull over what they mean for the game as a whole.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Winter Invasion 2017 Interview with Hawk Sean

At Invasion this year I had a chance to have a quick chat with Hawk Sean about the direction of the company for the next year or so.

Monday, 13 February 2017

Our 3rd Anniversary!

Picture shamelessly ripped from Alex's blog, Epitude Rusk
Three years. Three blissful, glorious years. That's how long you've all been putting up with and indulging the nonsense that we produce.

As I haven't received any cards or emails of congratulation, happy birthday to us! It was 12th Feb 2014 when I penned the first introduction post and we've not looked back since. I'd like to thank you all for continuing to come back and give our work a read, and be invested enough to comment on our posts too!

For those of you who are regular readers and podcast listeners you'll be aware that Mike and I (mostly Mike really) give Tech Boy 2000 and Joe a hard time regarding the number of posts they have written. It turns out work was slow for Mike this week, and he ran up some eye opening numbers that I wanted to shame our compadres with...

Friday, 10 February 2017

OB Podcast Episode 19: Cone Of Shame

If I said to you that we don't talk between podcasts, would you believe me? That in the weeks, or sometimes months that we don't record we keep our maws firmly clamped and become mute? It would of course be a lie, but for the amount we do talk on microphone you'd be forgiven for believing me!

Friday, 3 February 2017

Invasion Report: Reconquering the Colonies

Hey ho bloger-sphere, how the devil are you?

You may have already heard the word.........I won Invasion for the 3rd time. Not only that, but it is a hat-trick of Winter Invasions for me; 2015, 2016 and 2017. That is 2 with UCM and one where I basically cheated and took Shaltari.

The tournament went right down to the wire and was only determined on the last activation of the last turn. The event ran really smoothly and was great to see all the friendly faces. There were 38 competitors, which was a little disappointing to see - big drop from September, and a slight drop from last Winter.

There was tid-bits of information and some beautiful artwork to see from an 'as yet unknown' project, more to come on that I hope.

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Winter Invasion 2017 Round-up

Laughing, whining, celebrating, commiserating, agreeing, arguing, queries, answers, smells, worse smells, air-con, less smells, sounds, silence, dice, luck, swearing, eating, drinking, conversing, hugging, more hugging, more hugging, restraining ordering, contemplating, calculating, spending, boasting, sulking; the list of activities which took place over the weekend of the 28th & 29th January could go on and on, although I have run out of suitably descriptive words, so maybe it actually can't.

Winter Invasion, that's of course what I'm referring too! As is always the case, the OB boys landed (no walk on grunts in this force, we strictly travel by dropship; it's built into our cost) in the war zone of Croydon bearing our war grimaces, primed and ready for the ensuing two days of battle. Well, most of us were, I was instead deployed in a 'war reporter' type role, as I wasn't in the mood for a tournament but did want to re-engage with the community and Hawk Wargames.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Is the Broadsword getting some Flak?

Good morrow avid readership.

It is I, Lord MegaMike, back to regale you with stories of artistry and war......

Almost an age has slipped past since (as some of you longer-term readers may remember) I was reviewing the newer units from Reconquest Phase 2.

The Broadsword was one of the units that I was not immediately smitten with. Well good news - I have grown to like it. So much so that I have even painted it.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

January 2017 Errata, FAQ and Tournament Pack Review

The entrance to Hawk's Botanical Gardens
BuuzzzzzBuuzzzzzBuuzzzzzBuuzzzzz-Buhh?-BuuzzzzzBuuzzzzz-Just 5 more weeks- BuuzzzzzBuuzzzzzBuuzzzzzBuuzzzzz-Fine, fine, I'm up! Tech Boy, did you set this thing wrong? It's only meant to go off when Hawk get some Zone content out! Oh, they have? Hang on, how long have I been asleep? 3 MONTHS?!? Alright lads, time to get up. Oh, Mike's up already, and Bethany's bed looks hardly slept in; Joe, don't worry about it, you lay in for another 4 months and dream of fantastical posts which will never happen.

I wouldn't have called what's been happening here a total black out, cryo-sleep stylz, more that of a prolonged hibernation (the bear is the OB spirit animal, in more ways than you could possibly realise). It's no secret that nothing has happened in Dropzone Commander since, realistically, June, and we had been pretty much scraping the barrel for content which wasn't negative (read R:P2 release reviews...), and that was made even harder by the delay in DfC!

But, butbutbut BUT, there is content! Not strictly new content persay but instead the trifecta of rules updates; an errata, an FAQ and a glossy new tournament pack. That's right, a 2017 tourney pack at the beginning of the year! Before Invasion!

I've had a thorough read through the three, so shall we walk hand in hand (yes that much touching is necessary, and no gloves, I want to feel your greasy palms on mine) through Hawk's Botanical Gardens, where all rules are grown and nurtured? Of course we should, now stop pulling away and link fingers with me!

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Rise of the Phoenix

Title and pic is a bit overly dramatic

Basically, I'm playing UCM again, and I'm taking them to Invasion at the end of this month. Mainly because there is not a lot of love for them, they are the perennial underdog.

I'm not sure in the current meta (do I even know what it is at the moment??) that the UCM are that effective, hey ho, I'm taking them anyway. I'm going in.....