Deadzone – Alpha rules released

Deadzone ContagionIf you listened to episode 108 of the Meeples & Miniatures Podcast, you would have heard Jake Thornton talk about Deadzone, the upcoming sci-fi game from Mantic Games.

Deadzone is a hybrid game, falling somewhere in the middle between a boardgame and a miniature skirmish game, taking mechanics from both areas and melding them into something with plays like a sci-fi skirmish game, but in a shorter time due to not having to do things like measure movement.

The Alpha rules are available to download and play, and Jake Thornton is gathering feedback on his Quwirkworthy blog.

My initial impressions are pretty positive. The rules are relatively simple, and their lack of complexity will not be to everyone’s taste. On the whole I quite like them, and can see them being adapted for use as a ‘general’ skirmish set.

I do have certain issues – for example, I do not like the i-go-u-go turn format, but understand Jake going this way as he’s talking about trying to institute fire and manuevere tactics in the game. As you might guess, I have been an instant convert to the turn sequence that Too Fat Lardies are using in their Chain of Command rules, and I feel sure that an adaption of this would work in Deadzone – it would mean that you could still use fire and manuevere, but would be perhaps more limited (and therefore have to make more tactical decisions) on which units could or could not be activated each turn.

mat-on-whiteIt is well worth taking a look at these rules, and with the de-luxe terrain mat now funded on the Kickstarter, if Mantic do what they have suggested they may do, and open up a terrain-only pledge level, the option of using these rules and terrain for your own games with your own figures could be worth considering.

You can find the Deadzone Kickstarter here

4 Comments on Deadzone – Alpha rules released

  1. moocifer // May 5, 2013 at 14:15 // Reply

    [quote].. if Mantic do what they have suggested they may do, and open up a terrain-only pledge level, the option of using these rules and terrain for your own games with your own figures could be worth considering.[/quote]

    I did consider myself both a wargamer & a boardgamer, but its clear from my negative reaction to the alpha rules stacked up against the countless many other positive ones floating about that I am most definitely the former.

    I think using DB dice rolling mechanics for opposed tests is a horrible, drawn out way of determing everything that gives a false impression of player interaction. I find the Battle cards bland, adding nothing to the story telling element each encounter is supposed to represent and I hate the way once they’ve run out that’s it .. game over. Finally I also think plain old IGO-UGO is not the best or most interesting solution to an activation system that advocates teamwork & unpredictability (give me something similar to SAGA or CoC anyday ..)

    As it is I will be waiting for the terrain-only pledge before making my final decision as to whether or not to drop this KS completely ..

    • Moocifer

      Can I take it then that you are not a fan of the combat mechanics of Force-on-Force or Tomorrow’s War? Or X-Wing for that matter?


  2. moocifer // May 5, 2013 at 17:17 // Reply

    Not really interested in X-Wing, but I see your point with regards to TW. However I don’t recall absolutely every roll in TW being an opposed one. DZ for example seems to have no Quality checks or any sort of Command structure as yet and as such has a very limited/basic feel (yes I appreciate that’s its only an Alpha ruleset) – so hardly a game that inspires me to want to play using squad tactics.

    • I like some of the ideas, so I would be quite happy to take the mats, scenery (plus dig out my old Ndcromunda stuff) and see what I could do with them

      Although, it would probably be just as easy to adapt Chain of Command to Sci-Fi once it’s published.

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