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Friday, December 21, 2012

Dust Warfare: Intro to Dust! Part 1

Hey guys and welcome to my first post here on the WWPD Network.  My name is Jay Powell but some of you may know me as HuronBH on the WWPD Forum or from around the web.  Starting with this post and moving on into the future I will be sharing with you insights and cool models, from the large variety of games that I play.  While the majority of my posts will show up here on Outpost Zero; I do also play Saga, Bolt Action, and occasionally Flames of War; so you may see posts from me occasionally in those sections as well.  Enough about me, now on to the topic at hand: DUST WARFARE!

What is Dust Warfare?

Dust Warfare is a conflict level game (my term for games with armies sized between skirmish and mass combat), set in a science fiction take on World War 2, produced by Fantasy Flight Games. It is based on a comic book series created by French Artist Paolo Parente. In Dust Warfare you build armies made up of several 3-5 man squads, weapons teams, heroes, large walkers, tanks, and other vehicles using the miniatures from the popular 1/48th scale board game, Dust Tactics. Dust Warfare moves the miniatures from the board tiles onto a more traditional war games play mat and provides rules for things like moving, shooting, assault and terrain features such as barbwire, minefields, trees, and buildings.

Dust takes place in 1947. Thanks to a mysterious substance known as VK Ore and the discovery of crashed alien technology, the world has been divided into a battleground by 3 major factions; the Allies, the Axis, and the SSU.  National identity has fallen away, as powerful new weapons have been introduced at increasing speed forcing the governments of the world to band together to create the ruling bodies of the 3 major blocks.  The Allies are formed from troops from North America, the British Isles, the Free French, and Australia. They control most of North America, Brazil, a large portion of Africa, sections of the Middle East, India, and most of Australia.

The Axis, having killed off Hitler in 1943 and the Nazi party with him; are formed from Germany, Italy, and Japan.  They control all of their home countries, most of continental Europe, Scandinavia, Libya, sections of China, Manchuria, the East Indie islands, and Australia.  At the end of 1943 the Axis and Allies met in secret peace talks (that prove to be indecisive) in order to discuss a peace on the Western Front.  Upon learning of the peace talks, Stalin, in a fit of rage pulled Russia out of the Allies and in 1944 along with China forms the SSU. The SSU currently control most of Eastern Europe, Siberia, Asia, and South America.  They also have taken over the coast of Alaska, Cuba, the southern tip of Florida, Madagascar, parts of Africa, and a few islands in the East Indies.

Currently only Argentina, Spain, Portugal, and Turkey have managed to stay neutral in a conflict that now spans the entire world.

What do I need to play Dust Warfare?

You will need an army made up of Dust Tactics minis.  Currently there are models available for three factions; Allies, Axis, and SSU.  In addition, you will need The Dust Warfare main rulebook:

Inside you will find all the rules you need to play the game along with force organizations and rules for multiple units, walkers, and heroes for the Axis and Allied armies.  In addition to the basic rules (of which an overview is provided in Part 2 of this article, coming soon), and the rules for the Axis and Allied armies, you are also provided with a very well thought out scenario builder for playing pickup and tournament games, and a series of themed missions for you to play as well.

Also available are 2 campaign books.  The first is called Operation Zveograd, and it includes new expansion rules that let you to included Flyers into your games:

In addition to the new flyer rules, this book also introduces two new walker types for both that Axis and the Allied armies. But most importantly, it includes all the rules you need to play SSU Defensive and Commissar Platoons.  Included with the SSU rules are new special rules for heroes to pilot walkers and other vehicles.  The SSU are also the first to receive flyers and have 3 types of helicopters including an infantry transport helicopter, a walker transport helicopter, and a ground attack helicopter (which has 4 different variations).

Also included in Operations Zveograd is a series of three player missions allowing players from all 3 factions to play in one game.  The Second Campaign book is called Operation Hades:

Operation Hades includes additional new models for all 3 factions, including the first Super Hero character, Winter Child for the SSU.  Also there is a 3rd platoon type for the SSU (bringing the total for each faction up to 3 different platoon types), the Red Guard.  Another cool feature of the SSU expansion is the inclusion of the 4 tracked vehicles in the game, 4 heavy tanks (one of which is pictured on the cover of the expansion). These heavy tanks provide a heavy support element for all 3 SSU Platoon types.

Early next year we will be seeing the next expansion for Dust Warfare released.  It is called Operation Icarus:

It promises to add flyers to the game for both the Axis and Allies, along with additional weapons teams, heroes (including an Allied Super Hero), and units for all the factions.

Part 2 of my Intro to Dust Warfare will include an overview of the unique structure of the phases in each round of the game and a synopsis of the basic game play mechanics.  See you next time.
Jay Powell is a long time Hobbiest, Gamer, and occasional Podcaster that has over 20+ years of experience in the hobby. Jay has worked for Games Workshop and Hobbytown USA in the past, and has run many leagues, campaigns, and tournaments over the years as a Privateer Pressganger, GW Outrider, and game clubs member. Jay was the original co-host of The Gamers Lounge Podcast and has appeared on many podcasts as a guest host from around the world.  You can currently find Jay, when not writing new articles for the WWPD Network, playing games at Huzzah Hobbies in Ashburn, VA or on his personal blog 24 Hour Gamer Geek.

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