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!

I unearthed this car barricade whilst digging through a box under my bed (as gamers we all have at least one of 'those' boxes, and normally lots of these boxes, full of limbs and guns and unfinished projects and general hobby gubbins) and decided it would be perfect for the scenery project. I had made the piece of scenery in the header picture as a display piece for my Oppressor to be waddling it's way over. It was going to look very cool, but then not for the first time my mind wandered onto other things and I never ended up finishing it. It's a miracle I'm still focused enough to blog to be honest!

I still had a scrap yards worth of N-gauge sized cars knocking about in another box, and digging in yet another box yielded me some plasticard sheets and struts, and so using measurements from the original piece of scenery set about building The Great Wall Of Car! The idea is to recreate the barricade of a particularly obnoxious Resistance Warlord, who doesn't agree with the idea of hiding from the Scourge.

The project is simple enough; cut a rectangle of thick plasticard out and glue two cars on top of each other, then glue the wall pieces to the side of them. A bit of battledamage is added to the vehicles and wall, and that's pretty much it. It gets a bit more technical with the corners and to make them symmetrical you have to do a bit of easy measuring, but it's worth the extra two minutes it takes.

Next time I'll be bringing you the rules I intend to use with this scatter terrain as well as finished pictures of the project!


  1. I completely agree! There needs to be debris rules. I always thought it odd that a walker can't walk into a ruined building for cover (they are always impassable, right?). Or destroyed units get removed completely. Stuff like that....

    But then, it may end up running into the 40k realm if things get too fiddly.

    1. I actually get why ruined buildings are impassable, because they would likely be an unstable mess which couldn't support the tons of machine plodding over it. I think the key with scenary in zone will be to keep it nice and simple, but you'll have to wait to see how I'll be using these barricades...

  2. Excellent! Looking really good, and really happy to see you guys exploring the hobby side of things.

  3. I think the biggest problem with debris terrain and covering features are the rules. Specifically the landing zone for drop ships. For a game that wants you to use drop ships it makes it hard to also include covering features. This makes the game end up with you fighting between tall pillars with a lot of long straight lines of fire. I understand the LZ is hot rule and the need for it, but non active inanimate objects preventing ships from landing makes for a less interesting landscape.

    1. Completely fair and valid point. I think when we come to use them at Critical Engagement, we will have ruilings for LZ is hot.
      Just off the top of my head - we could say that all scatter terrain does not affect a dropships landing zone, but any units disembarking cannot be placed within the scatter terrain.

    2. We've played it like this: any feature taller than 0.25" will obstruct a landing zone or keep a hovercraft or hovertank from traversing it. With this rule the little N scale cars are no problem, but when you get in to the big rigs and other large features like billboards and destroyed structures, it does have an effect.

    3. Trying to keep it simple will be key. Not effecting landing zone and how troops deploy is one part of it.( and Mike's suggestion sounds good)
      The other things that crop are:
      1) Should scatter terrain be perishable? Buildings have DP and can be destroyed. Should broken burnt our cars be indestructible? Or should they have an AV and DP too (personally I don't think so, just because it moves away from keeping it simple)
      2) Is it passable? As mentioned above what has to go around and what can go over. This can advantage some and disadvantage others.