Mini Bots and Talents

As we get ever closer to the release of the new rulebook for the Judge Dredd miniatures game, we are getting very excited here at Mongoose! This really is a gorgeous book, a fitting starting point for fast-paced and thrilling firefights that take place in Mega-City One every day!

We have managed to sneak in lots of little additions that will nonetheless have a powerful effect on play. For example, Renegade Robot forces will have access to a brand new troop type – the Mini Bot.

Mini Bots represent all the millions of small druids that toil endlessly in Mega-City One, servicing vehicles, keep pedways clean, hunting vermin, and all the other jobs that citizens take for granted. Once they break their programming and go renegade, however, they prove to be extremely cheap units that can overwhelm enemies. While Renegade Robot players will not be able to tool them up to the same degree as a Servo or Combat Droid, they have a sufficient equipment allowance to make them good at one thing, be it a close combat nuisance (and quite deadly when used in number or to support robodogs!), a cheap, short-ranged stump gun blaster – or, equipped with more expensive weaponry, a fair terror for Heroes on the other side!

One of the unique features of the Judge Dredd miniatures game is how you can start with a fairly basic Hero in your force, and endlessly customise him (or her, or it!) with not only weapon and equipment options but Talents as well.

Talents are special abilities that allow Heroes to do really cool things on the battlefield. They are arranged in ‘trees’ so while the first few Talents a Hero picks up are fairly modest, if he specialises he will quickly become a real master.  Take these two trees, for example, Alleyway Fighter and Gunslinger.

Alleyway Fighter represents a real ‘street’ style of close combat – the very first Talent in the tree is Dirty Fighting, which allows a Hero to kick an enemy somewhere it really hurts, leaving them vulnerable to a follow up attack.

As a Hero gets better at becoming an Alleyway Fighter, he can progress down the tree to gain Talents such as Below the Belt and Deadly Strike, right up to Mighty Blow, which can take out even strong opponents in just, well, one might blow!

Alternatively, the tree allows a Hero to ‘branch off’ to take Careless and Thundering Charge, two talents that will give any close combat Hero a real advantage if he manages to get the drop on a foe.

Gunslinger is the Talent tree Heroes will take if they want to pursue flashy, show-off shooting techniques. However, this has its own specialisation too, making pistol weapons more fearsome in close combat with Close Combat Shooter and Pistol Whip.

Psi Talents are a variation on all of this, and are only available to Heroes with a Psi score, such as Juve Psykers and Psi-Judges.

Here we can see three Psi Talent trees, covering Pre-Cogs (seeing them before they see you!), Necromancers (call up the dead!), and Pyrokine (set fire to your enemies, or cause flames to rain down from the skies!).

Again, psychic Heroes are able to specialise or spread their Talents about, either choosing just one or two Talents from each tree to be able to handle most situations, or concentrate on just one or two and become really good at what they do…

Next week, we will take a look at how Campaigns are played in the Judge Dredd miniatures game, and how Mercenaries work to become a unique balancing factor in games so even a starting force can play against an enemy like the entire Angel Gang on a level playing field.

The Judge Dredd miniatures game rulebook is set for release on October 18th and can be pre-ordered here.

The MkIII Lawmaster

As much a signal of the Judges’ ultimate authority as their uniform or Lawgiver firearm, the MkIII Lawmaster bike is a high adaptable vehicle.  Heavily armoured to endure a great deal of punishment, heavily armed to destroy almost any other vehicle on the street and yet still fast enough to pursue any perp, the Lawmaster is perhaps the ultimate crime-fighting tool after a Judge himself.

The Mk III Lawmaster bears a Cyclops Phylon TX Laser Cannon and twin bike cannon as standard armaments, together with a holster for an auxiliary scattergun.  The on-board bike computer is a multi-functional device that allows a Judge to access any Justice Department resource quickly and easily, while also possessing the capability, through the use of gyroscopic stabilisation, to actually drive the bike without a Judge on board, and even fire its weapons!  Even the patented Firerock tyres are a triumph of design, for they are able to maintain a strong grip at all speeds, in all conditions, and yet are completely bullet-proof.  Two storage pods slung either side of the rear wheel permit a Judge to carry a great deal of equipment with him at all times, but the Notron 4000 cc V8 KT23 engine can propel this heavily laden machine to speeds well in excess of three hundred miles per hour.

The Lawmaster’s Notron 4000cc V8 engine with ASB quad carburettors is the power behind the Lawmaster and generates enough energy to run virtually all the bike’s functions. The powerplant runs on Justice Department, special formula, non-explosive, minimal emissions, synthidiesel and a Judge can gain an entire shift’s patrol from a single tank. The fuel tank and engine are both protected by 12mm plastisteel plate.

Bike Cannon
Based on the heavy duty street cannon of other Justice Department vehicles such as the Pat-Wagon, the Lawmaster’s bike cannon are lethal weapons, fully capable of bringing a stop to the largest vehicle with ease.  The two cannon, mounted below the fairing of the Lawmaster, are twin-linked.  Each bike cannon stores 30 rounds within its magazine.

Bike Cannon Flare Round
Fired from the Lawmaster’s bike cannon, the flare round is used primarily to launch visual distress calls, though it has the secondary benefit of instantly illuminating any darkened space.  Each bike cannon stores a single flare round within its firing mechanism, which may be launched on manual or verbal command, though as the bike cannon are twin-linked, both flare rounds must be launched at the same time.  Flares will illuminate a circular area of 30 metres and last for 1 minute.

Bike Computer
The Synitron GK13 auto-pilot computer forms the heart of the Lawmaster, and is responsible for keeping a Judge on his bike and active, even in the most adverse of conditions.  In order to achieve this, the bike computer’s gyro logic units make the entire vehicle both light to control and yet very stable as they constantly make corrections to the bike’s speed and position on the road.  The bike computer is sophisticated enough to control the Lawmaster without a Judge’s input altogether.  Linked into the Likron GS 4T telecommunications unit, the bike computer is also capable of connecting its Judge with virtually any resource of the Justice Department quickly and easily, with the minimum of interaction from the Judge himself.  The Likron GS 4T has a maximum range of well over 160 miles.  Just like the Lawgiver, the bike computer can accept verbal commands from its Judge, and relay information either verbally or on its high-resolution screen.  The bike computer combines an automatic target acquisition system with fire control, allowing it to fire the Lawmaster’s weapons, also without intervention from the Judge.

Cable Winch
Mounted under the rear fairing just behind the wheel, is a Tikkra TT cable winch with 20 yards of line.  Fully motorised, the cable is stressed for weights of over one ton, though the Lawmaster can realistically pull only half of this before losing stability.

Cyclops Laser Cannon
Generally considered to be the most powerful weapon, shot-for-shot, a Judge on the streets has at his disposal, the Cyclops laser cannon, centre-line mounted on the Lawmaster’s front fairing, is capable of punching through over a foot of armoured plastisteel plating.  However, it draws an incredible amount of energy from the Lawmaster’s own power plant with each shot and takes a long time to recharge between each shot, making it a weapon to be used only in the most dire of circumstances.  When used on a Lawmaster, a Cyclops laser will take a full minute to recharge its over-sized capacitors before being able to fire again.

The Lawmaster has a very distinctive front end, dominated by a large plastisteel eagle and its array of five headlamps.  The main headlamp is perched between the handlebars and, at full power, is capable of illuminating targets over a mile away.  The secondary headlamps are automatically switched on by the bike computer when travelling through smoke or fog, or when the Judge requires as much light as possible.

Code 99 Red Emergency Call
Mounted behind the bike computer on every Lawmaster is a quick release emergency button.  Upon activation, this will send out a Priority One (Code 99 Red) Judge in Distress call to every Justice Department unit within 5 miles.

All Lawmasters carry a high-powered siren to alert citizens of a Judge in hot pursuit of a perp.  The maximum power setting of a Lawmaster’s siren is deafening, having a clear range of about a mile, though this is of little discomfort to a Judge wearing his helmet.  Senior Judges are sometimes permitted to alter the tone and frequency of their sirens so as to create a distinctive sound, allowing perps to know just who is tracking them down.

Armoured Saddle
The saddle is fitted with 12mm plastisteel armour, and made from memory foam, which contours to the Judge’s frame and offers maximum comfort for the long hours spent on patrol.

Holstered on the side of the fuel tank, this shotgun-like back-up weapon is pump-action and fires either standard 12-gauge plastisteel shot, plasteen baton rounds or stumm gas rounds. The Scattergun can hold up to 12 rounds in its magazine and different rounds can be mixed in the same magazine or individually loaded into the breech.

The Lawmaster is already available for the Judge Dredd miniatures game and comes either as a pair in the Lawmaster Patrol set, or individually with a male or female Judge. There is also a model of Judge Dredd himself on a Lawmaster, available for pre-order and released on October 18th!

Judge Dredd Rulebook Previewed

400 million people, and every one of them a potential criminal – welcome to the world of Mega-City One and Judge Dredd!

The Judge Dredd miniatures game has been around a few years now, but now we are really ramping things up with a range of new models, all spearheaded by the new Judge Dredd miniatures game rulebook.

Judge Dredd Rulebook

This is a 240 page full colour hardback, with all the rules you need to build a force and take to the streets of Mega-City One in a campaign that will see heroes rise and villains fall (or vice versa!). The core rules are simple and quick to learn, but with enough tactical depth to keep you playing for years to come.

Inside the Rulebook...

Eighteen different forces are available in the core rules, giving you a wide choice to match your playing style, ranging from the iconic Judges to mutated vermin from the depths of the irradiated Cursed Earth!

  • Justice Department
  • Brit-Cit Justice Department
  • Citi-Def
  • Street Gang
  • Ape Gang
  • Mobsters
  • Fattie Stampede
  • Cursed Earth Desperadoes
  • East Meg Invasion Force
  • Apocalypse War Resistance Unit
  • Sky Surfer Gang
  • Lone Vigilante
  • The Angel Gang
  • The Dark Judges
  • Chief Judge Cal’s Personal Retinue
  • Zombie Horde
  • Demonic Cabal
  • Renegade Robots

The Citi-Def, Ready to Shoot!

The Fattie Stampede

Beyond that, however, the core campaign system allows you to bring famous characters from the 2000AD comic strips straight into your games – no need for special scenarios or permission from your opponent. They can be present during standard campaigns, so you can use models such as Judge Dredd himself, Stan Lee, Galen DeMarco, or perhaps a Judge from one of the other Mega-Cities.

Judges from other Mega-Cities

We have also included Famous Firefights, scenarios that allow you to play out actual scenes from the comic strip, such as Judge Dredd’s encounter with the Cosmic Punks and their leader, Gestapo Bob Harris.

A Famous Firefight

The all new Judge Dredd miniatures game rulebook is due for release on October 18th and until then we will be running a series of previews on Planet Mongoose that delve into all aspects of the game, so stay tuned!

You can pre-order a copy of the Judge Dredd miniatures game rulebook  from here and have it sent to you on day of release, giving you plenty of time to prepare your forces for the battles to come!