Friday, 11 January 2013

Dropzone Commander - Post Human Republic Starter Force

Hawk Wargames have VERY kindly sent over a Post Human Republic (PHR) Starter set for Dropzone Commander to check out here on ToaTS. I have been eyeing up these models since I first spotted them at Salute 2012 and was very happy to get my hands on a set.
Lets have a look at what's in the box

Post Human Republic Starter Force
The packaging of this set is very nice. Painted pictures of everything included, contents lists, info about the models and everything you need.

Inside the box it gets even better. The set comes packed in a KR Multicase foam accessories tray with the DzC logo. How good is that?

Taking everything out of the box you can see it includes a deck of Force cards, 3 Neptune Dropships with flight bases, 2 Ares Walkers, 2 Phobos Walkers, 2 Juni Tanks and 2 bases of Immortals troops.
That is quite a bit for a starter set. Even if it is 10mm scale. The cards are standard size so that should give you an idea of the sizes of all the parts.
Lets have a closer look at the different units included.

Neptune Dropship

The Neptune is a medium sized dropship.The model is fully resin and comes in 5 parts, 2 sections of main body and 3 engines. It also come with a flying base and 'widget' so the model can be easily removed from the base for transport.
The detail on these models is amazing! Small and intricate but very sharp.
The side engines do have a couple of lumps of resin on that need removing and a quite thick mould line down one side. The main body joint had to be cut out a little to be a flush fit and some lines sround the edges needed scrapping off. Abit more prep work than I am used to but for the detail level I didnt really mind too much.
After cleaning the model went together quite well. All the parts just slipped together and the 3 engines can be faced in which ever direction you want.
To get a flying angle I had to move the top of the flight stand a little but you cant notice as its under the model.
Overall, I quite like it. 

Ares Battle Walkers
The Ares Battle Walker is a fully resin mini again. You get 2 hull parts, 2 legs and 2 weapon/targetting arms.
The front top of the main hull had a large piece of resin sticking out of it. I didnt think this was too bad until I tried to remove it. As its on a curved and angled piece, it was a pain in the backside to clean up afterwards without damaging the shape. The other side of the hull also had a rough area where it is meant to be smooth. this was close to cast line so wasnt easy to get rid of without damaging the detail.
The weapon arms also had some resin tabs on but this came off quite easily without and damage.
The legs had mould lines running down the front armour plates over some vents so these didnt come out very well. The joints in the legs were also partially filled with resin that had to be cut out to reveal the detail. 

Once cleaned up, and revealing some bubbles, it was time to build the model. The parts ment together VERY easily and it is an impressive, highly detailed piece. I really hope I just had bad luck with the casting but I checked the other Ares and that was the same.
Sorry Hawk, but I have to be honest with what I find.

Phobos Battle Walker
The Phobos has the same hull, waist and legs as the Ares but with different weapon options. Unfortunalty this meant it had the same casting, tabs, roughness and bubbles issues!
Agian it is a stunning piece in amazing high detail but the faults let it down. By this point I was starting to wonder if it was just bad luck as 4 walkers had been the same.

Juno A1 IFV
The Juno is again a resin model. It comes in 3 parts, 2 halves of the hull and a turret.
The detail is as high and sharp as the other minis in the set. Where the hales of the tank meet there was some raised resin that needed cutting off and there was a mould line around the thin edges of the turret that unfortunatly went over a lot of detail so couldnt be removed without losing it.

The tank halves have ball and socket joints inside to line the sides up bu 2 of these were covered over with resin that need to be removed. Once that was done it went together ok. Well, I say ok.
One half of the tank is ever so slightly shorter than the other (Top half in first of the above 3 pics)
This meant that each end was out a little. To top it of, where the halves meet there seemed to be a gap and a dip that will need some filing. Luckily this was on a bare section so wont harm the detail.
Unlicky casting again? I dont know. The second tank was the same.

The Immortals were the only metal models in the box. 5 on a sprue in different poses was nice and they sit in a resin base.
A closer look at the models shows that even on this tiny scale, they stil have good detail and proportions.

These just clipped off of the spure and stuck straight into the base. A little file on the base edges and they were all done.
Easy is good!

To give you a better idea of the scale, here is one of each model next to the 'Doctor'. A 28mm model on a 30mm base. When I heard 10mm, I thought they would have been a lto smaller than this. Impressed by the size.
A nice added touch is the fact the the tanks and walkers actually fit underneath the dropship. They both have fittings on that match up with the ones on the bottom of the flyer.
when turned the right way up they didnt hold though. Maybe magnets are needed but I think that would affect the look of the joints. Are they meant to stay together or not?

Price - This has been a talking point online for a while now. £70 for the set does seem acceptable for everything thats included. IF the casts were better.

Overall - I like the high detail, the mount you get and the general design. Unfortunatley, the casting issues leave a lot to be disired and put me off this set. For a top of the line range I would have expected much better.
I really hope I was unlucky and had a bad box as a one off. Although the fact that all the models were the same makes me doubt that.
Apologies to Hawk Wargames as you were amazingly kind to send me these goodies but I have to be honest.

4 out of 10 Badger Points.

In a few days we will check out the scourge Starter Force. I can tell you now, the casting is MUCH better.

Hendybadger awaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!


  1. Shame about the mould lines damaging detail but is it poor quality checking or straight up finecast equivalent problems?

    I hope my shaltari turn out nice

    1. I do hope its just poor QC and a large amoutn of bad luck on my part

  2. This is a really intriguing game and I'm hoping it starts to pick up in my local gaming area.

    Shame about the quality issues as I'd heard that Hawk Wargames had some of the highest resin quality pieces. Maybe it was just a bad batch.

    Thanks for giving us all info about the various games out there. It's good to see variety.


  3. I had heard very good things myself as well although I can only report on what I had.
    Hopefully some more new games coming soon


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