In a game of tanks, dropships, battlemech style walkers and giant alien craft that spit plasma, these are exactly what they look like: cars with a gun strapped to the back and a few extra metal plates screwed on the side. As such, they aren't going to be immensely resilient to enemy fire, especially as they have no countermeasures and so can pretty much be shot at from anywhere on the board.
They do have a few advantages though. Firstly, they are a cheap way of getting some more AA fire into the army - they can even focus their fire to potentially damage larger target. Secondly, they can enter play from the Breaching Drill I painted last week, and so can pop up behind enemy lines to harass weak points. Finally, they are scouts, which means they can provide line of sight for indirect fire weapons and allow command cards to affect units some distance from my commander.
In terms of painting they were fiddly buggers to do. Not only are they small and difficult to handle without rubbing paint off, but there are loads of tiny details. The sculpting of DZC miniatures is excellent, but Dave Lewis (the game designer) has such attention to detail that even bits that will never get seen are detailed and demand to be painted properly.
As with previous units, I've moved away from my main scheme to create a more ramshackle look to the unit. This has the added bonus of making it easier to work out which units have countermeasures and which don't.
Pete and I have now had three games using the new rules and we're thoroughly enjoying them. The game is much faster and frenetic, whereas it used to be laboriously tactical (although still fun).
Our game last night was a straight up kill fest and so it gave Pete a chance to break out his laser tanks (these are actually a thing) and, although the Gun Technicals weren't finished, for me to give my other new units a run out.
My Hellhogs were able to to complete a couple of attack runs, blowing up tanks and transports as they went. However, they were met head on by Pete's Archangel Interceptors which took down one of the Hogs before the first run was complete.
The Breaching Drill allowed my Freeriders to pop up behind Pete's lines and harass his tanks. Although they didn't kill a lot, they did draw a lot of fire away from the main lines and tenaciously clung on until the final turn.
The game ended in a narrow win to me, but if a couple of dice rolls on the last turn had gone differently, the result would have been reversed. It was close enough that we really had no idea who had won until we totalled up the kill points.
This would be a good week for the tallies if it weren't for the fact that Wargames Illustrated showed up with another free sprue of six plastic Crimean Russian infantry (God only knows what I'm going to do with them):