Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Dropzone Commander: Pheonix rising from the ashes?

We all have had some time now to play with our new and shiny Pheonixes. As the model is awsome and the rules are still in experimental stage, i want to start a litle talk about the rules.

The Armor
As we all know the Pheonix costs alot and has the whopping 9 damage points, but the armor is 5. So my first question is that should it be 6 or not? and why? I dont have an oppinion on this matter yet, i still need to play more with it but what do you all think?

The Guns
Next thing is the weaponry. The ranges on the missile barrages, AA-guns and chainguns is fine as it is. BUT... i realy think that the chainguns scream for alternate fire mode, like the Vindicator AA-guns on rapier tanks. To be honest i think that the alternate mode should be just like the Vindicators focused fire pattern so E7 SH3 AC3 but with a range of 12 and MF of 8.

You may ask why? Well one thing i have noticed with the Pheonix is that while it has a potential to take out alot of stuff with the large template of the missile barrages. After they have been fired the Pheonix scares nobody.
For example i had a battle of 1500pts against Scourge. I fired my first missiles into a Reaper squad taking them out. Next shot was against 3 stalkers and 3 hunters, all under the template. I missed the shot, it scattered 6 and didnt harm anyone. After this the Scourge just swooped around and under the Pheonix as with the 2 shots together from the chainguns needing 5+ to hit the skimmers. The scourge player didnt really care about the pheonix anymore as it didnt have alot of offensive potential anymore.

The disc of doom
The Pheonix model has the awesome radar disc on its back. I think every UCM player out there was hoping a rule for it. As that didnt happen i have started to toying around with couple of rules for it

1. Tactical awareness
The Pheonix is well equipped in commnication systems, to keep a constant connection into the planets surface where ships like Orlando type strikecruisers keep an eye on the battlefield with diffrent kind of optics, therman UV-systems and sends this information back to the Pheonix.

Once Per game game on activation of the Pheonix, you may force the opponent to show his current command cards.

2. Operational support
The Pheonix is designed to provide close proximity command and support to any battlefield actions. It provides UCM forces a constant feed of information about all know enemy formations and their movements. This makes it easier for UCM to hold their ground as they know what they are facing on the battlefield

All UCM infantry units that need to make a morale check can do it with a +1 modifier to their dice roll

3. False communication
The Pheonix can use its systems to send falce comunications to enemy units, cousing confusion and loss of coherency in enemy formations and directing enemy fast movers to wrong targets

Enemy fast movers whos flight patch would cross the Pheonixes command radius must reroll their reserve roll. This may only affect one fast mover in each turn.

There is some of the rules i have tought about. Surely they will need some refining, but thats just to get started. Now im intrested that what have you tought about the Pheonix? Please comment and share your toughts.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Dropzone Commander: Mortars, Mortars everywhere

As most of you allready know. Hawk Wargames has released the UCM mortar teams and the experimental rules for them. You can find the rules in the Hawk website.

Hawk is also releasing new infantry for Scourge and PHR. Shaltari is getting somekind of heavy infantry walker thingys, which realy are not infantry.

As we can see from the mortar team rules UCM is also getting Heavy Hazard suits, and Anti-Aircraft teams. With all the infantry comming from Hawk, they are clearly making a change into the game and giving infantry more role than finding objectives and hauling them out of the battlefield.

I dont have enough gaming experience to really comment the rules. Ill just say that the concussion shells seem really intresting and will open up some new tactics. First that come in mind, is pushing the nasty Scourge warriors back from windows and preventing them from shooting those combined shots.

Also, if the mortar teams can shoot individual targets, so two bases fire on two targets. It will give some grey hair to enemy infantry. But on the other hand, when the role of infantry is to get objectives there wont be that much shooting at them with the mortars. We just need to wait how they will play out and how they will shape our lists.

Sadly for me the mortar teams need Bear APC:s so you can field them. And atleast for the moment i am aiming for pretty air based list without them. But i will surely be getting mortars at some point!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Dropzone Commander: Ferrum and the gang

I just finished my Ferrum and the drones. It has already been on the battlefield twice, but painted models are always more fun to play with.

Im really happy how the Ferrum turned out. The parts are all glued in place as im really not into them moving. In my oppinion the decals are a perfect last touch for the Ferrum.

Ferrum lifting more drones to the battle from the drone bay

Jerry the drone

I will be adding these photos to the UCM gallery later. Next posts i will show the Falcons, Archangels and Raven A:s. I did some more decal work on them.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

New blog sections!

UCM Gallery

Now i can officially tell you all that the UCM gallery has been opened! Its still a little light on pictures, but i will add more as soon as i shoot more during games. Just look for UCM in the top navigation bar and it takes you to the gallery

Dropzone Commander

The Dropzone Commander part is going to be a link list taking you all who are more into DzC than Bolt action to post talking about Dropzone. I also hope that the dropzone players will give me feedpack in those posts. Im still fairly new to Dropzone, on the other had i have a bad case of "DzC fewer" going on right now.

Bolt Action galleries

As for the French and British galleries i hope that i have the time to take pictures tomorrow at the club as me and Herkko are having a DzC game.

I hope you all like the new content that i have made. Im slowly but surely getting the blog to the state that i like.  if you have ideas of how to improve the blog or something else, feel free to comment.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Bolt Action: For the free France!

Fight for the liberty of France continued last friday, when i had a battle against clubmate Juhas early war germans. We had a scenario based battle where the germans had tasked to occupy a nearby town of the bridge they captured last time. As the germans advance has been fast there would be no artillery support available in this battle.

French comander giving last orders to the defenders before the battle

Defenders of France                            

Command Squad                               
3x Infantry squad                 
Machine gun team                                   
Mortar team                                          
Anti-tank rifle team                                  
Renault FT-17 tank                                    
Light howitzer                

German Attackers

2x Command squad (+1 bonus and +2 bonus)
4x Infantry squad
Armored car
Mortar team
Sniper team
Tank (cant remember the model)
Anti-tank cannon

This was or battlefield

The defenders of France had made preparations for the oncoming battle before the germans arrived, so French deployed into the houses.

German commander decided to deploy his infantry on to the right flank and also into the midle of the battlefield.
Armored car and tank rolled towards the town from the left flank, supporting each other. Infantry on the right were also supported by the anti tank cannon.

French commander sent his trusted Renault FT-17 tank to meet the germans on the right flank. The tank saw an opportunity to make a huge inpact on the German force and targeted the command team of the right flanck. Luckily for the germans, the commander only lost two of his squad members but was saved himself.

Renault FT-17 acting as a gatekeeper into the towns right side

Light howitzer ready to bombard anyone in view.

Soon the howitzer saw its first target. The German armored car speeded towards the town. Howitzer fires and narrowly misses it, flying shrapnel and dirt to the cars side. This proved to be too much for the cars driver who decided to reverse as fast as he could. It took couple of turns for the driver to be convinced by his gunner to drive back towards the town.

German tank also advanced towards the town, seeing the armored car reversing, it also saw where the shot came from. The tank opened fire at the howitzer and managed to hitting and killing a gunner.

On the midlle of the board two german squads got orders from their nearby officer. One squad was ordered to run in the cover of the light fence and use the same road as the tank and armored car. The other squad was set to sneak into the town trough the woods, on the righ side of the town.

German squads line up behinde the fence
Soon the squads receive new orders

Over at the right flank, the massive german formation with two squads, anti-tank cannon, medic and the other command squad were advancing forward. One of the squads was hit by mortar fire and went to the ground, suffering some casualties. The germans soon noticed the French mortar spotter sending message pidgeons from the nearby forrest. Nearest german squad opened fire, but the spotter managed to send one more pidgeon before he was gunned down by second turn of shooting from the german squad.

German right flank

Leader of the whole german force, after loosig his squad members

In the town, French infantry squad on the left most building notices that it is out of position and leaves the house and runs to the midle building. There is still a machine gun team in the left most building.

In the middle of the board, the german squad trying to enter the town with the vehicles got shot to pieces by two full French squads in the middle building and the machine gun in the left building.

German squad, couple of footsteps before the French unleash hell on them

German mortar got into firing position earlier in the game, and now its spotter sent the coordinates to strike the french howitzer. The german mortar fire was deadly accurate and first round hit the howitzer killing the crew.

The French mortar team positioned close to the howitzer saw their countrymen perish before their eyes. They knew that  they were now the only slim chance that the left flank had of stopping the german vehicles before the anti-tank rifle team could relocate. Despite their best efforts the mortar team did not hit the german tank closing in the town on a high speed.

Anti-tank rifle team making a quick relocation to the other side of the town
On the right flank the germans were trying to close in on the town. They pushed their anti-tank cannon into a firing position, forcing the Renault to reverse back into the town. The French soldiers on the right most house also opened fire onto the germans, trying to hold them back.

The german mortar targeted the middle house and hit, french troops in the house suffered some casualties. Also the german tank closed in right next to the house and fired with its machine gun in point black range, trying to pin the french.

At this point the French commander ordered the two squads in the middle building to exit, fearing that they would be pinned into the house and the german mortar was allready zeroed in. This was a move that costed the lives of alot of his men, but also the german tank got destroyed. The tank chased the French footmen now in the field at the middle of the board, turning the back of the tank to a direction that it should not have done. The anti-tank rifle team made a quick dash behind of the tank, set their gun into position, quickly aimed and fired. They hit the exhaust system of the tank and setting it on fire and taking it completely out.

The germans behind the fence saw their tank on fire and the french soldiers running in the field. They quickly adapted to the sitation and opened fire on the french who had no casualties. They suffered major casualties. The germans took a reinforcement squad from the right flank and it also opened fire into the other french squad on the field. After a turn of firing the german squads assaulted the french squads taking them out, but they also took casualties in return.

The Renault reversing on the road, saw their infantry squads getting beat down at the field. The gunner of the Renault also noticed that behind the german squads there was a german officer and his squad. He unleashed a short burst with his machine gun, rolling 6 to hit, to wound and for exeptional damage, killing the officer.

The game was closing to a end. The germans had made good advance into the town, but now they had the right most house to clear. The german commander looked at his troops who had taken a beating during the battle and none were at full strenght. He ordered squad after squad to take the right most house, but none of his men came back out of that house. He loaded his submachine gun, ran to the house and kicked in the door. He looked and the remaining surprised french infantrymen and unleashed burst after burst with his weapon and killed them to the last man. This german counterpart of srgt Spears from band of bothers had earned his medals and shown why he was in charge. This took the game for the germans. But the battle had coused major casualties to the german forses. For the french the casualties were also horrific.

This was one of the greatest battles i have had in bolt action, and i hope that there is more to come. Also the whole early war setting is something that i realy enjoy.

Ill try to open the galleries for my french and brittish troops during this week, so stay tuned!


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Dropzone commander: List review Air Cavalry 1.0

Hello all! I feel like i want to talk more abot Dropzone Commander and my UCM Air army. I have named it Air Cavalry. After yesterdays post i have got some new ideas and i feel that i can now play my army better. So i think its time to go trough the units i have picked and why (Other than i dont have the models). I assume that this will benefit me more and mayde my readers will also get something out of it or they can give me feedback :)

 Air Cavalry 1.0

Clash: 1498/1500 points

Standard Army
    Standard Roster [1498/1500 pts]
  Field Command [415 pts]
            Phoenix: Phoenix(Lieutenant) [250 pts]
            Ferrum: Ferrum [165 pts]
For the field command slot i have picked the Pheonix for my commander. First of all the Pheonix model is awesome. With the pheonix i can benefit from the UCM command cards, which are clearly better for air units. 16" Move, 9damage points. I just need to learn how to place my Pheonix in the battlefield. The Missile battery with large template and E 10 seems like the perfect counter to the scary Scourge squad of 6 hunters, killing them on a 3+. It also has AA-weapon with 2 shots and the heavy chain guns with 1 shot each and E10. Perfect to take pot shots at anything within 12".

Another choise for this slot is the Ferrum, which seems like a good choice to pair with the Pheonix into the same battlegroup. It can launch 8 drones with a 30" move or 15" move if they want to shoot. The drones will die to anything that takes even a look at them, but the Ferrum can replenish three drones in a turn and all drones can act indepently. Tough if you want to benefit from the Focus-4 rule you want to be shooting at the same target. I think that the targets for the drones are light and medium dropships. Also they can go and thin out Minder swarms, alltough the minders can reaction fire before i can shoot them. The drones also have a threat range of 21" with 15" move and 6" range.

 Armored Formation [265 pts]
            Katana Squad: 3x Katana [99 pts]
            Rapier Squad: 3x Rapier, Condor [166 pts]
   Armored Formation [265 pts]
            Katana Squad: 3x Katana [99 pts]
            Rapier Squad: 3x Rapier, Condor [166 pts]

For my Armored formations i have chosen two identical battlegroups. Squads for those are a unit of three drive on Katanas and three Rapier Anti-Aircraft tanks in a Condor medium Dropships. 
The idea in the Katanas for the first turn is to give me the ability to fire 6 shots into a building that the enemy will want to get in. Also they can use their smoke launchers and cause a +2 accurasy modifier to anyone shooting at them for a turn, if my Katanas wont fire.

 I am a litle torn in between the Katanas and Sabres. As i am mostly fighting Scourge at the moment the Katanas might be little better. Lets take a look

Katana, 2 shots, E9 A9, MF is more than with the Sabre, so good for a drive on unit. Hits Skimmers on a 4+ and kills them on a 4+.  Units like Scourge Hunters kills them on a 3+. Can use smoke for survival but instead cant shoot for that turn.

Sabre, costs little more than a Katana. 1 shot,  E10 A10. Hits Skimmers on a 4+ but kills them on a 3+. Hunters kill them on a 4+. Will also need a dropship so you can get them into position. 

At the moment i think i will go with Katanas, but i need to experiment more. Also with air list the point save between Katanas and Sabres might be just the thing that decides this for me. (I also need to get models for Katanas as i am currently proxying them with Sabres, and everyone knows that proxies hit worse.

Rapiers. Well these are pretty obvious choice as they are the best AA unit that the UCM has. They also have a dropship to get them into position. The thing i need to experiment with is that do i need two squads of rapiers. Or can i manage with one and a squad and a squad of Wolverine A:s. The wolverines could go for light dropships hunting. This might make for another blog post later on.
   Legionnaire Corps [219 pts]
            Legionnaires: 3x Legionnaires, Condor, 2x Bear [141 pts]
            ^ Sharing ^ Legionnaires: 3x Legionnaires [78 pts]
  Legionnaire Corps [200 pts]
            Legionnaires: 2x Legionnaires, Raven A [80 pts]
            Falcon Squad: Falcon [40 pts]
            Legionnaires: 2x Legionnaires, Raven A [80 pts]

Legionaire Corps. Ahh the humble foot soldier of the UCM... which are mostly in apcs, dropships or buildings... still they use their... feet...but not for moving that much.

Anyways, First battlegroup is currently two squads of 3 Legionaire infantry stands in a Bear apc in a Condor dropship... shipception anyone? :D Ok, a bad pun. Dropzone Commander is a game where you really need to play the mission instead of just killing stuff. Thats why i need infantry to claim and transport objectives for me.  in a 1500pts match i think i will need 4 squads on infantry.

The Legionaires cant really shoot or fight any better for the mattter. I have two options. First is to keep this battlegroup like it is, or change them into 2 stands in a squad and mount them in Raven A light dropships. This would save points and give mobility but less protection, and make them surely lose any close quarter fights against anyone. Tough in air list 4 small and mobile squads might be better.

Falcons. If I save up points in the Rapiers and with the Legionaires i could have more than one falcon in my list. I could aim for 3 or maybe even 4. The Falcons have good mobility with a move of 24" and mf of 12", It can put a hurt into anything that it can hit with its E11 gun. The thing is the hitting. Agains skimmers its 5+ on one dice to hit. Falcon also has the Evasion rule so +2 accuracy to any AA shooting at it. This means its +4 if the enemy wants to reaction fire. Taking this into consideration a squad of 4 Falcons booming out of the skies against skimmers might put a litle fear into the enemy (or not?). Even better if i could find apc:s and divide the shots into 2 per apc (if i have 4 Falcons), but i think that would happen very rarely. Against Scourge the Falcons are not at their best (or i dont know how to use them and i suspect that this is the reason)
 Air Wing [134 pts]
            Archangel Squad: Archangel [67 pts]
            Archangel Squad: Archangel [67 pts]

The Air Wing. UCM has a splendid Fast Mover option and that is the Archangel. 2 shots with E7 and costing only 67pts a piece and can strike basicly anywhere in the battlefield is a fair trade. It has a limited range of targets tough as it cant harm some units efficiently. Targets i will be going after with these are from light to medium dropships, and flying units that cant shoot AA, anything with armor 5 or 6 so apc:s will also do. I just need to find the perfect targets and moments to strike. I have used these one time and it ended up in the Angels not hitting anything and dying to reaction fire :(

Thats all for this time. Feel free to comment my list or anything above! Also, any tips to figthing Scourge would be awesome!


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Dropzone Commander: The age of exploration and first contact

Today we are talking about dropzone commander. I will share couple of toughts about my ucm list and about my last game against Herkkos space squids (Scourge).

Previously i have said that i wanted my UCM to be mostly air based army. So i got myself Falcons, Archangels, Raven A:s, Ferrum and the Pheonix command ship. Last sunday i had my first contact against the Scourge with them. This was our first larger game of 1500pts so Herkko also had some new alien technology with him.

The First contact

This was my list:

Pheonix/1 Falc
Clash: 1453/1500 points
Standard Army
    Standard Roster [1453/1500 pts]
        Field Command [450 pts]
            Phoenix: Phoenix(Captain) [285 pts]
            Ferrum: Ferrum [165 pts]
        Armored Formation [265 pts]
            Katana Squad: 3x Katana [99 pts]
            Rapier Squad: 3x Rapier, Condor [166 pts]
        Armored Formation [265 pts]
            Katana Squad: 3x Katana [99 pts]
            Rapier Squad: 3x Rapier, Condor [166 pts]
        Legionnaire Corps [219 pts]
            Legionnaires: 3x Legionnaires, Condor, 2x Bear [141 pts]
            ^ Sharing ^ Legionnaires: 3x Legionnaires [78 pts]
        Legionnaire Corps [120 pts]
            Legionnaires: 2x Legionnaires, Raven A [80 pts]
            Falcon Squad: Falcon [40 pts]
        Air Wing [134 pts]
            Archangel Squad: Archangel [67 pts]
            Archangel Squad: Archangel [67 pts]

Units i have never used in my list was Pheonix, Archangels, Raven A:s Falcon and the Ferrum. Now looking at my list i see that i am just under 50 points short of the 1500. I wonder why... So i could had a second Falcon. Oh well. Herkkos list is a bit under too so it was fair.

Herkkos list was this:

Herkko's list
Clash: 1484/1500 points
Standard Army
    Standard Roster [1484/1500 pts]
        Oppressors [307 pts]
            Desolator: Desolator(Champion) [195 pts]
            Minders: 4x Minder, Intruder Beta [56 pts]
            Minders: 4x Minder, Intruder Beta [56 pts]
        Vanguard [450 pts]
            Reaper Squad: 3x Reaper, Marauder [158 pts]
            Hunter Squad: 6x Hunter, 2x Marauder [292 pts]
        Vanguard [253 pts]
            Reaper Squad: 3x Reaper [117 pts]
            Stalkers: 3x Stalker, Harbinger [136 pts]
        Warriors [237 pts]
            Warrior Horde: 3x Warriors, Marauder, 2x Invader [156 pts]
            ^ Sharing ^ Warrior Horde: 3x Warriors [81 pts]
        Warriors [237 pts]
            Warrior Horde: 3x Warriors, Marauder, 2x Invader [156 pts]
            ^ Sharing ^ Warrior Horde: 3x Warriors [81 pts]

This list is rather scary as i have not faced a squad of 6 hunters before. Those E11 guns are pure evil.
Herkko also had more units i have not faced before. Those were The Desolator, Harbinger and stalkers.

The Scenario of our last game

We played the Land Grab scenario. This scenario uses Focal Points (first time for me with these aswell) Player will score one victory point if he has a unit within 6" of the Focal Point. Also the player with the most amount of units in points cost within 6" of the Focal Point will score an aditional victory point.

This was a fun alternative for the objective or intel based game that Herkko and me have played. Also it put my UCM airlist to a big challenge right of the bat as aircrafts cannot score for Focal Points.

The outcome

In the end i won the game, but not by much. In the last turn my Pheonix got shot down. I had one unit of rapiers scoring in the middle FP, some litle stuff here and there. Herkko also got pretty major casualties. I wont be going into the game with more details as i didnt take any pictures.

Couple thigs that i learned the hard way:

1. Harbinger has an AA-gun! I got one of my Archagel Fast Movers comming out of reserve by rolling a 6 on one dice in the first turn. I attacked a marauder full of invader apc:s, missed with both shots and got shot down by the Harbinger.

2. Scourge infantry in houses are a pain in the *ss! Herkko got two large squads of warriors into building and started popping tanks here an there. Range of 12" combined with the rule that will change 3 hits from a infantry base into a E11 hit is so annoying! all this with an accuracy of 3!

3. Minder swarms... Those litle buggers! 56pts for four minders and an invader beta light dropships is a absolute bargain for the scourge. Minders have gun that can shoot aircrafts and will hit on a 2+. It will also kill most UCM aircrafts on a 4+ as they are armor 5. These little buggers can fly and over work my AA squads, or if i wont shoot them, they will just sit there and reaction fire all my vital aircrafts.

I need to find some way to sort out these problems with my list. I prodably have the solutions in my list already, but i dont just know it yet. If someone has some input to these problems it is greatly appreciaded.

The expolarition

I will keep on practising with my air list. The changes i will make are that i will drop the infantry squads in the bears for infatry squads in Raven A:s instead.

The air list that i have looked online usually have only one unit of rapier AA-tanks, but i im not so conviced about surviving with only one squad yet. I might be changing a rapier squad to a Wolverine A squad tough. But that is a spot for another blog post.

The UCM has a heap of units that i also want to try. I will first build a strong air list and learn to use it and later i will get my hands on kodiak, scimitars, and longbosws!

If you read the whole post i thank you for your intrest and hope that you post a comment as you clearly have some intrest for Dropzone Commander lists.

Also we will be getting a new player for our gaming group! Herkko is having couple of practice games agains Jamo and his Shaltari army. I was suppose to be there aswell but i have so time issues.

Hopefully Herkko and me can arrange a Demo game out our gaming club. It would be awesome to recruit atleast one more player. Then we could have two matches of about 1200pts in the same day prodably!

Until next time! Dont let the space squid bite!