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Dropzone Commander Factions: The Scourge

4 Minute Read
Sep 25 2014

Today, the evil Scourge make their appearance in our faction spotlight. None can stand before their implacable will, and all will be enslaved…

With the United Colonies of Man addressed in our last article, we now turn to their arch nemesis, the insidious Scourge. These guys are definitely meant to be the bad guys of the Dropzone story, and they have a very different set of tactics and play styles in comparison to their UCM counterparts.
In years past, the Scourge launched a massive invasion against Earth, its solar system, and the other initial holdings of humanity. With their fleet damaged and split because of a brief and bloody civil war, the Earth Administration Authority (EAA) was unable to turn back the tide of the Scourge invasion. Humanity was forced to flee for the stars, leaving their homeworld (and much of the human population) in Scourge hands.
The Scourge are a parasitic life form, inserted into a host’s body where they mesh with the nervous system. This extends a human life to a few hundred years, leaving them in constant pain while the Scourge exercises complete control over the host. As such, humanity has been forced to fuel the Scourge war machine, using up Earth’s resources to continue building their engines of death.
The ultra-fast workhorses of the Scourge army.
In many ways, the Scourge are polar opposites in comparison to UCM equivalents. Human tanks tend to be well-armored and slow, whereas the Scourge grav-tanks are lightly armored and incredibly fast. A UCM Sabre tank can only move 4”, while the Scourge Hunter grav-tank moves at a blistering 9”! However, the Sabre packs Armor 10, and the Hunter only has Armor 8. This makes a huge difference in a game that naturally rests on a 5+. (A weapon with Energy 9 needs a 5+ to damage a unit with Armor 9.)
Scourge units also tend to have very short range on their weaponry when compared to other factions, which means their speed is essential. Skimmers cause enemy weapons to become much less accurate when traveling over 6” in their previous movement, so the Scourge pick up some added resilience there.

While Scourge weapons have much shorter range, they pack a serious punch! Most races boast few weapons with an Energy value above 10, but the Scourge bring Energy 11 on several of their basic units. This means that when they do close the distance, their return fire will be very telling on heavier armor.
Don’t let them fool you; they are NOT CUTE!
As a result of this short range, the Scourge have many unit options that can almost be considered suicide squads. Their goal is to close to point-blank range and then shoot until one side is annihilated. There is little room for feinting or attempting to draw the enemy out. The Scourge reward a player who commits quickly to a course of action and then punches through for victory.
The Scourge bring many units to accomplish this goal, some of which have many squad members to add target confusion. You do not simply target an enemy squad in Dropzone; rather, you target individual models. This means that wiping out units like Prowlers (the dinner plates with legs in the picture above) is no easy feat!
Fear the Plasma Rifle!
In keeping with their theme of aggression, the Scourge infantry function differently than their UCM equivalents. Scourge Warriors are designed to get into firefights with anything that gets in their way, including enemy tanks! Their Plasma Rifles have a combined fire rule that allows them to link three hits together to achieve a single Energy 11 hit. Remember that the heaviest Armor is only 10, and you immediately see how aggressive these little guys can become.
It is worth noting, however, that the Scourge Warriors are not very good in Close Quarters Battle (CQB). This means that acting too aggressively can lead to them being shot to pieces or defeated by enemy specialists in room clearing. The Plasma Rifles are nice, but be sure to keep the guy behind the gun alive long enough to use it!
If you play the Scourge, expect to take significant losses early in the game. It will take some work to get them into firing range, but once you do their high Energy values and natural aggressive rewards will make all that early pain worth it!
Do we have any Scourge hosts in the audience at Bell of Lost Souls? Who has experience facing them from the other side of the table? Let us know about these and any other Dropzone victories/woes in the comments.
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