Dust Tactics the game is quite a strange beast as you’d expect these kind of miniature wargames to be proper skirmish game without the need of a board. It comes to no surprise then that Fantasy Flight and Dust Studios have indeed created a new spin off called Dust Warfare which is coming soon. However, this review is concentrating solely on the board game version.
The year is 1947 but it’s very much a parallel universe as massive combat mechs stomp around the green fields of Europe as the Allies and Axis forces do battle. It’s a power struggle literally as both sides seek an elusive alien material called VX. All this is the brain child of Paolao Parente and he’s created a setting that’s a heck of alot of fun!
The game is played by miniatures and dice which dictate the hits-n-misses. Players go head to head as either the Allied or Axis forces. It’s very much a fast shooter game and relatively quick to play with each skirmish taking under an hour to complete.
Some of the parts in the box (yes, there is a lot more!!)…
What goes into the squad is determined by the player and there is a limit of points value of the total units in each side. The most exciting part of the game is the ability to control giant Mech units that stomp around. Units essentially move on 90mm x 90mm squares on a grid of a 9 squared board.
Here’s the full list of contents:-
• Never-before-released miniatures exclusive to this Core Set
• An updated and comprehensive rulebook
• The “Victory Bridge” scenario book
• Six Combat Dice
• Two double-sided terrain posters (each the size of six terrain tiles)
• 10 unit cards
• Nine double-sided hazard squares
• Two ammo-crates
• Two anti-tank traps
• 1 Blackhawk Walker
• 1 Rhino Hero
• 5 Hell Boys Soldiers
• 5 Death Dealers Soldiers
• 3 The Hammers Soldiers
• 1 Hans Walker
• 1 Lara Hero
• 5 Sturmpioniere Soldiers
• 3 Heavy Laser Grenadiers Soldiers
• 3 Heavy Flak Grenadiers Soldiers
• 1 Plastic Loaded Token
• 1 Quick Start Rules Card
The miniatures is one of the best things about this game. They are incredibly detailed for plastic board game components. You certainly get the feeling of quality from these.
Here’s a couple of pictures from the set…
The Allied forces…
The Axis forces included in the set…
The rules are designed to keep the action flowing as much as possible. There are various rules about movement and firepower of weapons that are described on the individual unit cards. Line of Sight and Cover rules apply in Dust Tactics. They are handled differently according to where a unit is shooting from on which side of buildings for instance. Cover saves work on a soft and hard cover basis and the dice is rolled to indicate whether shots successfully hit targets. If the squad consists of a number of hit troops it’s up to the player to remove which troop/s are taken out of the game. The victory goes to the squad that captured the target objective and victory points are calculated at the end the game.
As you can imagine there’s quite a lot to cover in the rulebook but in terms of quality and gameplay it’s an excellent introduction into the Dust Tactics Universe. Coupled with the fact that a new table top rule set is on its way, it’s an ideal place to build up a decent set of miniatures. Expansions and Scenarios are available and released through Fantasy Flight Games.
Buy Dust Tactics: Revised Core Set here
The Rule set is available to download here from Fantasy Flight