Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Doctor Who update and skirmishes

Right, it's about time for a real update to my blog... I've been working on some UNIT soldiers, including the Brigadier and Sgt Benton, for a scenario I have planned and yesterday I finally finished them!

Sgt Benton leads his troops in the defence of rural England!
Scouting the edge of a forest
The Brigadier ponders having a swift pint at lunchtime
The characters and SMG armed figures are all Black Tree, the rifle armed figures are from Gripping Beast and are an affordable option for fleshing out forces.

As regular readers may know, the scenario I am working on has several monsters which may emerge to menace the players during the game. One of them is this bad boy:

Some say scarecrows are 'corny'.
I've had a peculiar affinity for scarecrows ever since I was unexpectedly attacked by one while crossing a field playing a Fighting Fantasy gamebook. Just to be clear, the scarecrow was in the book, not attacking me while I was reading it.

So I thought I'd pit my newly painted soldiers against some cybermen to get a feel of how the game plays. A Cyberman ship has crashed near a village and the survivors are looking to cause trouble.

Cybermen emerge from a crater.
Sgt Benton and co pass a familiar looking car while on patrol
UNIT destroy a Cyberman in a puff of special effects...
The first game proved to be far too easy for the UNIT forces, so I doubled the Cyberman force and included a leader.
Back with a vengeance...
UNIT makes a final stand against overwhelming odds.
The second game was pretty devastating for UNIT, especially compared to how easy the first game was. It wasn't just down to the number of Cybermen though, and I learnt a couple of valuable lessons.

1) Leaders are very important: As you can only activate half your forces on your turn, having characters which give you additional activations can make a huge difference.

2) Keep it together: The 50% activation means it is quite easy to leave some of your force behind, but this greatly reduces your options and effectiveness. Even with only one additional activation from leadership, the Cybermen and leader had no problem against UNIT when they kept together as it meant they could take a few losses without losing the momentum of their attack. Againtst a divided enemy, UNIT could focus their fire on one or two Cybermen at a time and whittle them down.

This was, of course, just a simple test of the rules. The scenarios based on episodes of the show are much more varied and interesting. I can see these rules getting a lot of play in the future.


  1. Great pics. Amazing how different they both was. Did you use the DWMG rules?

    1. Thanks! The lighting wasn't so great on some of them, but that's partly due to where we currently live.

      My guess is 1/3 of the difference was down to me improving the Cyberman force and 2/3 was due to me playing the Cybermen differently, but it's early days yet, so hard to tell.

      Yes, I was using the DWMG rules. Forgot to include that important detail, thanks for reminding me!

  2. Very cool - might have to get some of those gripping beast guys.

    Still enjoying the Invasion Earth rules but will definitely have to make time for the DWMG ones at some point.

    1. I think they came out quite well. A little less chunky than the Black Tree ones, but I'd certainly buy more. It's the Mo-Fo range.

  3. Looks good Chris!

    I really do need to finish up that 15mm TARDIS.

    1. Thank you!

      I'm not 100% looking forward to painting a 28mm TARDIS, but it'll have to happen at some point! :)

  4. Looks fabulous Chris! The crater and the special effects did it for me. ;)

    1. Thank you Michael. The crater is a plastic Games Workshop one. I really should get round to painting all the others...

      And what would Doctor Who be without a dodgy special effect?! :)