Hello Dropfleet Commanders and welcome to the craziest set of rules so far!
The Resistance Coloniser Dreadnought is coming your way to pre-order this week, and we thought we should lift the lid on exactly what it brings to your fleet.
Well… this is no ordinary Dreadnought!
When the Resistance fleet was released, we saw the most modular space ship sprue ever in the Resistance Cruisers. They came with a bare hull upon which you could fasten all sorts of weapon systems and structures.
Since then we’ve released some truly cool spaceships, but most of the rest of the fleet is fairly standard, and not nearly as modular. Even the Battleship only comes as the Trident or Olympus class (although there are dozens of combinations of ship you can make with the model itself).
And that’s where the Coloniser comes in!
One Box: Three Ships
Although the Coloniser Dreadnought is only one of the ships you can build with this incredible new kit.
There are three different classes of ship available: the Pathfinder, Explorer and Coloniser. Each is super modular, and fills a different role in your fleet. The smallest is around the size of a Battlecruiser, and the largest is a massive Dreadnought (seriously, it can be physically the biggest ship in the game).
How did we go about making rules for all these modular ships? Well, it involves a few tables, and some trial and error. Without further ado, let’s have a look at the rules.
Pathfinder – Interstellar Raft
Starting with the smallest, let’s welcome the Pathfinder!
The Pathfinder is equivalent in size to a larger Battlecruiser. While it has a higher Signature than the likes of the Phalanx or Tribune, it also has more Hull and Point Defence.
None of these new ships come with Ablative Armour though, which means that 3+ Armour save is there to stay. It’s slightly easier to hurt than the other Resistance Battlecruisers, but stays at 3+ even after being Crippled. These big tankers are made with redundancy in mind, so you have to blow it to smithereens before it stops going!
The Pathfinder is armed with some NC-16 Missiles, which you’ll see on all the ships here. They’re a cursory defence system. If you want more defence, you’ll need to start adding options from the Dreadnought Systems list. But we’ll get to that…
Explorer – Interstellar Ark
Right, now we’re getting a little chunkier!
The Explorer is equivalent to a Battleship, but in true Resistance style, it’s a big battleship indeed! With a massive 28 Hull, it’s as survivable as most other factions’ Dreadnoughts.
However, while it has a lower Signature than most other Dreadnoughts, its Scan and Thrust are also rather low. This thing is going to have to get in close, and will rely on some Spikes (looking back at you, Galileo).
Luckily enough, this big ship isn’t quite big enough to be classed as a Dreadnought though, so you’re saved from 2 rolls on the special Crippling Damage table. Which is a nice bonus, considering this ship is going to be taking a lot of damage in a game.
Coloniser – Interstellar Dreadnought
Finally the big momma of all ships. This is probably the biggest ship in the game! Depending on how you build it of course, but there’s potential for it to be rather chonky. And the Coloniser’s statline certainly supports that!
With a massive 35 Hull, it’s the toughest ship around (although still only a 3+ save). Your enemies can see it from a mile off, and its Scan is low (which is standard for Resistance ships). The Coloniser’s Point Defence is the best in the fleet, but still rather low compared to other factions, which means you’ll have to support it properly.
This big beast of a ship must take 8 options from the Dreadnought Systems list. Its smaller cousins only have 6 and 4, respectively. That’s a lot of options! This thing can be armed to the teeth, so once it gets in range, it’s going to make a horrible mess.
But what are these Dreadnought Systems exactly? Well, that’s where we put the flavour on these ships.
Dreadnought Systems List
There we go, that’s the table.
You’ve got a couple of turret options and a couple of broadsides (including a pretty great Close Action weapon to mitigate the little missiles you start with). There are three Launch options, including a pair of torpedoes (even better with the updated torpedo rules). You can even take a Scanner Array to mitigate the Coloniser’s poor Scan range.
There are only a couple of rules when choosing options:
- You must take the number of options listed (4, 6, and 8 as you go up in size).
- You have a limit on the number of Broadsides (there’s only so much hull on each ship – 2, 3, and 4 as you go up again).
- Only 1 Structure (which means you can’t put loads of Scanner Arrays on there).
Although this table isn’t quite as exhaustive as that of the Cruisers, all the hits are there, and there’s a lot more variation in how many you can take. A Heavy Cruiser only gets 5 options, and the lightest one of these starts with 4!
Now, I know what you’re thinking: just pick the thing that does the most damage and put all of those on there. And that’s definitely an option, but there are two reasons that you might want to keep thinking:
- A Coloniser with 8 Heavy Vent Cannons costs 670 points. That’s basically a UCM London and a Tokyo together!
- You’re spending a lot of your points here, and you need to be able to use those points in multiple ways. You’re not going to be able to afford as many support ships, so think about making this ship fill that role.
Have a look and think not just about making this the most deadly ship around, but consider what gaps you have in your fleet. Taking a Coloniser with a toolbox of tricks will mean you have a really strong, stable platform to base your battle plan around. A couple of turrets, some broadsides, some launch, and a Scanner Array. That will be able to tackle everything your opponent throws at you – sometimes a balanced approach is better.
Although sometimes you just want to have 16 Torpedoes to fire. 8 in one round will destroy almost anything around! Although after two rounds you’ll have a big fat points sink floating around not doing much. Worth it though? Up to you!
Modular Ships, Modular Rules
These new ships have a profile each, and options to upgrade the ships with a number of weapon systems and other bits and pieces. That means practically endless combinations of rules to balance!
And here’s the big caveat: these are V1.0 of these rules. They’re incredibly modular. We’ve tried to make sure the construction of your ships is limited only by your imagination. Other than each ship needing to be an approximate size, the options are up to you!
However, we do appreciate that this puts an unprecedented level of control over ship building – something that the other factions are simply not able to do. There are going to be better combos and worse combos. There will be crazy combos and simple combos. We’ve tried to think of the weirdest, most broken ones, and construct these rules and points appropriately. But there aren’t as many designers as there are players, so we’re opening the floodgates to let you figure this out.
What this boils down to is this: these rules are subject to change! Thanks to the online Fleet Builder, all rules are able to be updated and balanced periodically. We fully expect the Coloniser rules to be broken fairly quickly. It might mean we have to rebalance points or put some restrictions on the Hardpoint options. We’d like to not do that – the Resistance ethos is all about freedom of choice after all! Freedom from the Scourge oppressors, freedom from the jingoistic UCM, and freedom to put whatever weapons they want on their ships!
So, let us know what you think, and have fun! The Resistance Coloniser Dreadnought will be available for pre-order this Friday on the TTCombat webstore, and the full rules (and points) will be up then as well. Look for them around 3pm!