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Is Dystopian Wars for me if I don't enjoy naval battles? (Noobie buying help?)  [RSS] Share on facebook Share on Twitter Submit to Reddit
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Made in us
Longtime Dakkanaut

Hey folks... As some of you may have seen elsewhere on Dakka, i'm looking to finally dip my toes into a smaller scale (IE 10mm /15mm) game. I feel i've found my "perfect" systems at 28mm, and don't feel compelled to spend any money on those fronts this year, barring exciting releases for my favorite games...

I was leaning towards Dropzone Commander, when someone directed me to Dystopian Wars, claiming it is easier to fund a huge army, for two players... something I was hoping to accomplish when moving to this scale of game.

Are there any good noobie guides worth reading? I'd love a run-down of the core mechanics.... etc... but mostly, is this a system I can enjoy if I have no desire to play sea-faring units?

The wife and I are all for land battles, infantry, flyers, etc.... but have no interest in taking battles to a third "front" if you will. That said, 75% of what I see as the advertising face of this game IS, ship battles.

Is an all land/air based Dystopian Wars still a fun game/system, or am I better served biting a pricey bullet and going for DzC?

Thanks! :-)

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Made in gb
Willing Inquisitorial Excruciator

Well as for newbie guides, there is the one at the top of this page


Dropzone commander is 10mm, DW is actually closer to 3mm by the way.

The game plays just fine without using naval units, as both land and even to some extent air battles are fully supported (Air just lacks alot of fancy extra rules, and is basically about making an army out of support units). But yes, land battles are perfectly fun and fine (even getting it's own themed expansion campaign book in Storm of Steel). It's just that the ship battles were what got the game on it's feet, with the land being relatively "new" (broadly speaking and in comparison I mean).

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Renegade Inquisitor de Marche

Elephant Graveyard

The land and air battles are fairly good from what I know (Admittedly little)

DropZone Commander does look cool but the model were way to expensive compared to what you get...
Not GW bad but still bad.

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Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut

Actually, Dystopian Wars is supposed to be 1:1200 scale, which comes out to actually 1.5 mm scale as opposed to Dropzone Commander which is the 10mm.

I think the actual tanks are relatively the same size in both games though, because the tanks in Dystopian Wars are absurdly large. For example, the FSA pioneer tanks which come two to a base on the small token bases are the size as the largest real world tank built, Maus. The FSA landship is 250 feet by 150 feet.

I personally have felt that the standard land game in DW is truly nothing more than a naval game on land, and I don't think it may be what is desired. Although that is said before I've ever been able to really look into how infantry companies work in the game.

I feel that the new Armoured Clash rules to expand Dystopian Wars provides a much better feel for the Dystopian Wars land game. For one aspect it actually provides the concept of terrain as opposed to just islands and hills. It allows for infantry and small tanks to garrison buildings and villages and makes artillery much more interesting tactically than in the main game.
The problem with Armoured Clash is that it requires more models, so it may be negating the cost savings standard DW has over GW and DZC, but I haven't been interested enough to really compare the army costs.
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Willing Inquisitorial Excruciator

When it comes to armoured clash, your better off comparing it to Historicals rather than against DZC. The "armoured clash" sets come in at around £60 for I think a 3 battalion force and 10 buildings.

The differences between land games and naval games are subtle but they're there. Alot of the turning mechanics are simplified on land (Very little has a minimum move distance, and only one turning template is used). The unit's tend to be a little more focused in their fire power too. Where as ships have a habit of bristling with guns, the tanks "generally" stick to pointing them in one direction, or close enough. It's a lot rarer to see things with more than 3 weapons at the most though if i recall.

Good catch btw roadkizzle, had forgotten it was a smaller scale. For intents and purposes though 3mm terrain tends to match up with it fairly well, i have rather a bit in 3mm i found cheap that seems to be meant for the sea equivalent of model trains or something. Works rather well as over sized hangers and stuff. Thing to remember in DW everything is "bigger", take a look at some of SG's own buildings some time.

- 1250 points
Empire of the Blazing Sun (Combined Theaters)- 1950 points
FUBAR Starship Troopers- Would you like to know more?
GENERATION 9: The first time you see this, copy and paste it into your sig and add 1 to the number after generation. Consider it a social experiment.  
Made in us
Regular Dakkanaut

The OP may feel differently than me, but he did specify that he did not care for naval games.
If someone doesn't care for naval games I really don't think they'll care for a naval game on land. The differences may be sufficient to differentiate between the naval and air theatres enough for good games of Dystopian Wars providing a themed island hopping, beach assault, and/or campaign series but I really don't think it's sufficiently detailed or differentiated to actually provide for consistently interesting primarily land-games.

I still think that Armored Clash provides for a larger number of interesting possibilities that make up fleshed out large land-battles, regardless of whether they're more like historical games instead of true sci-fi ones like Dropzone Commander.

The necessity of turn templates still restricts maneuverability close to that of naval ships, and the toughness of the tanks really was a mechanic designed to represent the massively redundant systems and infrastructures found on large naval vessels yet not really representative of the much smaller tanks.
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Regular Dakkanaut

I just thought of another game you should really look into if you want a land based game of smaller scale models.

Spartan Games recently introduced a secondsry company called Studio Sparta. They are releasing the land/air versions of Firestorm Armada based on the stages of planetary invasion.

They have the first and smallest version of it out. I believe that it would be much more similar in feel to DZC as opposed to DW which in my opinion is a full and true naval game on land/sea/or air and as Doc says Armoured Clash has more in common with historical wargames.

The big difference from DZC and Firestorn Invasion: Planetfall is that DZC uses modeled dropships to bring units in and redeploy them while FI uses specified areas on the table where reinforcements are dropped into battle.

I think that FI looked like a very fun game, but there were only a few problems with its supply that would make it more difficult to get a game group started.

First of all, the game models are only available from the StudioSparta.co.uk website. This means you'd have to get everything shipped. Also, there are currently only two factions, so it's hard to get a large gaming group involved. That said, there should be a big wave 2 release already shipping or shipping soon which really expanded the capabilities of the two factions. I personally doubt these would be as big of an issue because it seems your wife will be your main gaming partner.
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Regular Dakkanaut

Boise, ID. US

I guess a good question first is, what don't you like about naval battles? Because with dyst. The units operate pretty much the same in land sea and air.

The basic overview if the game... Did you roll sixes? Yes=Yay! No=Aww, sad face. After that it's about maneuver, and focusing fire. Arcs are very important, which is particularly common in naval games.
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Bounding Ultramarine Assault Trooper

I'd skip it if you aren't into naval, as I feel that is the best "front" as you put it.

I have land and naval forces for both Britannia and Prussia, with some air units as support. I think the naval portion of the game is far superior to the land game.

I've got a lot of experience with various other naval and land games, including historicals. The land portion of Dystopian wars handle ponderously, at least to me. Terrain is more of a problem then something that adds to the battlefield and we often found ourselves playing on near pool-table like battlefields, as we maneuvered out units around.

You can't fix stupid. 
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