Dystopian Wars Reborn

Dystopian Wars Kingdom of Britannia Ruler Class Battleship HMS King Richard IIIIn my recent blog post I reminisced about the demise of Spartan Games and the demise of their fabulous steampunk game, The Dystopian Wars.

Though as quoted in an TMP thread:

“A game is never dead as long as rules and players exist, or rather, a game is as dead as players want it to be”.

This is very true, but as a long time Epic player, it can be challenging to keep playing a game without new miniatures, new players and to be honest other new and exciting stuff being released by other companies!

However having said all that it was really nice to hear that The Dystopian Wars is to be reborn!

Warcradle studios have announced that they have acquired the rights to The Dystopian Wars.

We are proud to announce that we have acquired all rights and materials relating to the Dystopian Wars, Firestorm Armada and Uncharted Seas settings.

They go onto say

We are committed to producing an exciting range of new plastic and resin miniatures to support the growth of our games. These will build on the established releases as well as introduce new narrative and competitive gaming opportunities.

Here is the full video of the announcement.

It’s early days, so apart from the announcement, there is nothing else to see or read at this time.

I hope that they take stock of the issues that beset Spartan Games. One thing I hope to see again are Dystopian Wars blisters in the shops, as well as boxed sets.

I doubt they will, but considering that the originals are 3D computer files, I hope that we could see a 25/28mm version of Dystopian Legions, rather than the 32mm that was originally released.

Well good luck Warcradle.

The demise of the Dystopian Wars

I was saddened to hear of the demise of Spartan Games, the company behind the wonderful Dystopian Wars and hope the future bears well for all the staff there.

The Dystopian Wars is one of my favourite games, though to be honest I’ve not played for a while.

What I think is interesting reading the discussions forums, talking to a couple of independent gaming store owners was how the business model and selling tactics of Spartan Games impacted on my buying patterns and potentially the impact this had overall on sales.

When I first found out about the Dystopian Wars back in 2011, it was one of those games which just makes me go “woah!” and I just have to have it. So when I saw the Dystopian Wars when I was a gaming shop in Birmingham, I was like a moth to a candle! This was one of those games that I just had to have and would have to play.

Looking at the models, unfortunately the rules had sold out, there was one model that caught my eye and that was the model I had to have and would set me down the path of the Dystopian Wars. It was the blister of the Prussian Sky Fortress. A few weeks later I managed to get hold of the rulebook and was very impressed with the content and production values.

What I liked about the game, from a purchasing perspective, was that I could pop into a gaming shop and pick up one or two blisters.

Dystopian Wars Kingdom of Britannia Ruler Class Battleship HMS King Richard III

Yes I know I could have picked up a boxed set or done a mail order for a load of models, however having the possibility of choosing from a range of models meant that I bought more overall. I would often add a blister to another purchase, I know I wouldn’t have done that if the range was only available in large boxes.

So of course when retailers were no longer able to sell the blisters, then I would no longer be buying the models as I did. As for mail order, well yes I could do that, but then again that would have required a significant purchase of stuff, something I don’t do very often, and it would take a real need for a range of stuff, as few people offer free postage and packing, or you need to spend a bundle of money to get free delivery. I liked to be able to go into a gaming store and buy one or two (or three) models alongside other purchases. I did hear from one retailer that Spartan Games stopped supplying them with blisters, only boxes, expecting retailers to market the game to players, and then for the players to buy extra ships direct from Spartan. I didn’t know that until recently, I just assumed with the declining range of blisters of ships that no one was playing the game. In the end I stopped buying new ships, as there wasn’t anything “new” for my Prussian and Britannia forces.

I also feel that Spartan got distracted by the Dystopian Legions game. Initially I was really excited about the Dystopian Legions, then I found out that the models were 32mm, rather than the classic 25/28mm and that immediately put me off. If I was buying figures and vehicles then I would want to use them with my existing models, but actually I would also be using them with my existing 25/28mm scenery. So though I loved Dystopian Wars, I didn’t buy a single Dystopian Legions model.

Dystopian Wars: Prussian Empire Blucher Class Dreadnought

I am sad to hear of the demise of the game, I really liked the concepts in the Kickstarter campaign (which I only found out about after the demise) and I wonder if another person or company will purchase the IP behind Dystopian Wars and it will remerge. Even so I have a lot of models, so I can keep playing.

HMS King John, Ruler Class Battleship

I gave the HMS King John, Ruler Class Battleship for Dystopian Wars a basecoat of Citadel Base: Mechanicus Standard Grey.

What I have been finding is that my painting is not covering the model and I am not sure if it is my painting (in other words my eyesight) or whether it’s the paint shrinking. Looking over the model I think it might need a bit of a second coat.

King John – Ruler Class Battleship

I finished painting King Richard III and used it in a few games. The first of my reinforcements for my Kingdom of Britannia naval forces is another Ruler Class Battleship, called King John. Having constructed the model I gave it a white undercoat.

Unlike my other Battleship, this one only has three turrets, but does have a shield generator.

As I have said in previous posts I am not a huge fan of the Kingdom of Britannia ship designs, say compared to the FSA or the Prussian Empire. I just imagined them to be sleeker and more menacing. The Prussians certainly have that kind of look.

SMS Scharnhorst

I have started to paint the second of my Spartan Games Prussian Empire Dreadnoughts.

I finished the first, SMS Blücher and will be painting this model in a similar fashion. I decided early on to use the same turret layout as my first Dreadnought and not use generators. I did wash the model first to remove any mould lubricant.

I then gave the model a white undercoat using Citadel Skull White spray.

SMS Scharnhorst

I also affixed the model to an old plastic blister using a hot glue gun to make it easier to paint.

I’ve named this ship, SMS Scharnhorst, after Gerhard von Scharnhorst, he was Chief of the Prussian General Staff, noted for his writings, his reform of the Prussian army and his leadership during the Napoleonic Wars. Blücher who was an army Field Marshall, is whom the Blücher class Dreadnoughts are named after, I have decided that the first of my dreadnoughts will be the SMS Blücher. Generally ships in the same class are named in a similar vein, so the first of the class is the SMS Blücher, this dreadnought will also be named after an army general, in this case Scharnhorst.

King John – Ruler Class Battleship

I have been painting the Kingdom of Britannia Naval Battle Group for Dystopian Wars.

Having finished painting King Richard III and used it in a few games, I realised that I may need some reinforcements. The first of these ships is another Ruler Class Battleship, this one will be called King John.

Unlike King Richard III, this only has three turrets, but does have a shield generator.

Next stage will be a white undercoat.

Prussian Empire Blucher Class Dreadnought

I mentioned in a previous post that I had got some Prussian reinforcements. One of the three blisters I got was a second Blucher Class Dreadnought to complement the first one I have finished.

I did think about changing the turrets to generators, but in the end maintained the four turret model that I had done with the first one.

One of the reasons I write up how I paint my models, is partly to inform others, but also to inform myself. So I will be using the workbench feature I wrote up on the first model to paint this second model. It will remind me of the paints and processes I used.