2000AD On The Tabletop: Part Three – The Warlord Games Era

December 17, 2018 by crew

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I’m continuing this article series by taking a look at Warlord Games’ Strontium Dog Miniatures Game which is still available, is very much supported, and has a thriving online community.

2000AD On The Tabletop: Part Three - The Warlord Games Era

Catch Up - Part One & Part Two

Back in 2016 Warlord Games took over the license to produce 2000AD miniature games which had previously been held by Mongoose Publishing and, before that, Games Workshop. As a big fan of the Judge Dredd Miniatures Game, I was pretty excited by this development.

Warlord has a great track record, with titles ranging from Bolt Action to Dr Who, and work with some big names in the business. The second edition of the Judge Dredd game, the product of a partnership between Warlord and Mongoose, was a work of art by itself and got a lot of players into the hobby.

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The 1st & 2nd Editions Of The Judge Dredd Miniatures Game

Around the time Mongoose gave up the licence, Warlord held a sale on all Judge Dredd products and my initial purchasing frenzy was staid by seeing nearly every product line sell out and not be restocked. Speculation was rife among the community but the reason was obvious - Warlord was going to design its own in-house rules system and miniatures game in the 2000AD multiverse.

In the run-up to the release of the Strontium Dog Miniatures Game this year, Warlord posted some teaser pictures on their Facebook page which were immediately shared with the 2000AD community as a whole. I was pleasantly surprised at their bold choice of theme for their new game especially because it had never been done before.

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The Strontium Dog Miniatures Game

Strontium Dog is the title of a long-running comic strip from 2000AD where the main protagonists are Search and Destroy agents, nicknamed Strontium Dogs due to their mutations, who are universally looked down upon by the ‘norms’ or non-mutated people.

The SD agents travel through both space and time to get their targets and the setting has a Sci-Fi Wild West feel as wanted criminals often hideout on the frontier of the civilised galaxy. In other words, the perfect setting for a miniature skirmish game.

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Sci-Fi Western Terrain Is Ideal For This Game

The starter box for the game comes with everything you need for an awesome game of SD. The MDF terrain in the box, made by Sarissa Precision, captures the frontier feeling with a wind turbine, solar panels and a cabin for the criminals to hide out in.

The game also comes with an array of plastic tokens in black and red, some unique dice, lots of plastic-coated cards, and amazing miniatures.

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Everyone Likes Plastic Tokens

The game starts with each player choosing a leader for their crew. Leaders have a high Cool value and are therefore more likely to avoid being pinned and also take extra actions in a turn.

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The Character Cards Make Games Run Seamlessly

The token-from-the-bag initiative mechanic is given a fresh twist by having two different types of tokens. Standard units are represented by standard tokens and special units (units with a high Cool value) are represented by star tokens. These tokens feel exactly the same when your hand is in the bag.

Any players token can be used with any unit, but the star tokens have a chance to be put back in the bag and re-used. This allows for strategic use of star tokens and adds another layer of chance into the mix. I’ve played games where a powerful unit has activated repeatedly in the same turn with deadly effect.

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Create Your Own Characters

Another feature of the game which I find pretty cool is the ‘build-a-mutie’ section of the rulebook. This allows players to field other models, perhaps from other ranges, and generate attributes for them quickly and easily.

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Chicanery Cards Add Another Level Of Craziness

Each character model that comes with the game comes with a stat card and with its own unique rules or weapons giving every one of them it’s own personality on the tabletop. In conjunction with the Chicanery cards, which can throw a spanner in the works of your opponent’s devious plans, the tide of battle can change very quickly. Several times I’d thought I had already won but, with a strategic play of a Chicanery card and a lucky reactivation from a star token, everything changed.

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The campaign system is very narrative based with lots of options to upgrade your base, recruit extra models or hire specialists which play a support role from the sidelines by giving benefits to the team.

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One-off games are fun too, and the narrative can be generated by the mission tables. Myself, being all about the aesthetic, I like to throw down some terrain and come up with a story and motivations to fit the environment. So it’s really up to you how to play and there are rules to suit everyone.

How has your experience been with Warlord’s Strontium Dog Miniatures Game?

I’d like to wrap up this series with one more article which will be about some other 2000AD tabletop games of past, present and future in the New Year; 2000AD On The Tabletop: Part Four - Past, Present & Future.

Article Series Written By Moji

"The SD agents travel through both space and time to get their targets and the setting has a Sci-Fi Wild West feel as wanted criminals often hideout on the frontier of the civilised galaxy..."

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"I like to throw down some terrain and come up with a story and motivations to fit the environment..."

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