I’ve got a few Spartan reviews in the pipeline but I’m going to stagger them so I don’t spoil you.
First up I’m looking at the Zeno class armoured cruiser and the Pericles class drone carrier for the Covenant of Antarctica from Dystopian Wars.
Zeno Class Armoured Cruiser
The Zeno, or Death Star, class as I have dubbed it is a hefty ship compared to the standard Plato class cruiser. Not only an entirely bigger model but it’s just a much more impressive design.
A prouder looking vessel entirely than the Plato class with a far more solid construction, reflected in the stats. However, the star attraction of the Zeno (Death Star) class is its particle accelerator cannon. Although only a 12 inch range it packs quite a punch with 7 attack dice. Each. Or 13 with linked fire. The word ‘ouch’ springs to mind.
It’ll take some punishment too with a shield generator and 6 HP, although its low DR makes it vulnerable to mass attacks which makes using the particle accelerator a do-or-die weapon. And at 80 points per model you’ll feel the casualties acutely. But mine layers all the Zeno class to extract itself without pursuit so, if it survives its attack run it’ll be able to circle and come in again. Chances are Zeno class won’t survive the game but working together they could easily make back their points before they go boom.
The models live up to Spartan’s usual standard for attention to detail but there’s one little feature, combined with the aforementioned particle accelerator cannon that has earned it my affectionate little nickname. Should you get your hands on a Zeno class have a good look at the bridge. It looks rather a lot like the window of the Emperor’s throne room on the, yes you guessed it, the Death Star.
When you think about the size of the model I’m talking about that’s a mad level of detail. And it still posses that awesome contrast of bearly understood future tech and the crudity of the raw Victorian industrial era. And all the little sci-fi homages that Spartan have used to make the Covenant of Antarctica such a distinctive faction in Dystopian Wars.
Pericles Class Fleet (Drone) Carrier
I’ve always been impressed by the CoA carrier because it applies simple technology to the best effect. In this case, flinging drones into the air using pneumatic catapults. Which is way cool.
However I quickly gave the Pericles class a nickname of its own whilst building it. The House of Cards class named as such because the hull, 6 launchers and the central flight control are all separate parts and therefore is a bit of a pig to build and easy to get the flight control a bit wonky. And prone, whilst the glue sets, to collapsing like a house of cards. Detail and casting quality is good although the flash around the hull meant some of the rivet detail was lost during cleaning. Not a big gripe, just a shame.
As carriers go its massive. The hull itself is easily as big as the CoA battleship. The launchers also give it significant height making it an impressive model to look at and an imposing ship in battle. In addition to its 6 fighter wings (although I only got 5 in my clam pack) it packs quite a punch in its own right. Fore mounted torpedoes, hefty turrets and broadsides make it a battle carrier without peer. And at 130 points excluding the wings but including a shield generator it has an extra layer of resilience on top of the DR5 and HP 7. Plus 6 Ack Ack is just bonkers.
You can plonk the Pericles in the centre of a battle formation and it’ll hold its own competently and be as much a support ship to the main line as it will be a drone launcher. Coupled with the fact that you can be as cavalier as you like with your drones because there’s plenty more where that came from.
For all its slightly faffy design it’s an ace model and proper hard in-game terms. Taking one in a CoA fleet represents a tactical headache for more fleet commanders. Taking two carriers and you opponent can just pack up and go home.