Various Underhive Setups and Actual Gangs…

I finally have enough stuff done to play!
Cue Virus lock-down…

With no small amount of effort and time already spent on construction of modest Sector Mechanicus and Zone Mortalis playing areas behind me, I was looking forward to writing up my gang cards and getting some games in against other, actual humans. Alas, this was not yet to be. Rather than get bogged down and just starting in on yet another Netflix binge I thought I’d use lock-down to get busy!

Many won’t see the good fortune of being stuck in your home for long hours.
I, however, do. All those half-finished and barely dreamed of projects can finally have a turn in the sun. I don’t want to ruin the surprise but…I am in full production mode.

I had said that this would be an article on gang construction, and so it shall be. Before that though, let’s have a look at a couple of ‘typical’ table set-ups. Firstly, because they look cool and I want to set some gaming stuff up. And secondly, because the variety of environments should be a major consideration of anyone thinking of building a gang.

Necromunda is a shooty game where players will strive to get shootier stuff as time goes on. All gangs have access to the Trading Post for equipment and weapons and so, the balance is sort of maintained, in that everyone can get their hands on anything. Various things will be better suited (or downright useless…) in certain games and on certain table set-ups. I’m sure someone somewhere has delved into the exacting science of ‘just what is best for winning games’, but, I won’t be doing that here. Many possibilities and permutations can and will occur in your Necromunda games…why not focus on getting a good assortment of gangers together, the rest will work itself out on the tabletop.

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The restrictive corridors,walls and doors of the Zone Mortalis battlefield favour close quarters combat.

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Consider some equipment that can slow your descent through the vertical deathtrap that is a Sector Mechanicus table.

The ‘rule of cool’ is a rule to live by, and to game by…and, to built your gang by. The concept, though simple, is often unable to be grasped by tournament gamers. Don’t be a spammy weirdo, don’t look up how to build the killiest list on the internet. Just have a think about what kind of gang you want to build and try to spread around a bunch of diverse choices. This means more in a miniature game as you also have to actually build the representational model, with the weapons you choose. Necromunda has so much in the way of weapons and gear that a modeller can easily get lost in the choices.

While every rule has exceptions, most gangs will have a Leader, Champions, Gangers and Juves. These profiles can be armed and equipped based on the gang’s starting equipment list, and later, from the trading post. The Leader, of which there can and must be only one, is well worth a bit of consideration before you begin. Now is an excellent time to get familiar with the skill access choices available to you. The Leader (and Champions…) has a skill from inception and it pays to get one that will help your style of play or back up your weapon choices.

The Champions, of which you are allowed (and absolutely should have!) two of, can be treated like mini leaders. Look into skill access, possibly choose some of the more expensive / deadly weapon options as they should have better stats than the run-of-the-mill Gangers and Juves. I usually build a close combat and a shooting champion, just for variety.

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My (soon to be…) starting Orlock gang: The Nasty Boyz. Orlocks are a great middle-of-the-road gang, able to fill most combat rolls right from their starting options.

The gang construction rules require you to have as many Gangers as any other types of profiles in your gang, so, you will have a few of these guys. The starter gang boxes have plenty of options and again, try for a mix of close combat and shooting models. Also, one Ganger can have a special weapon, so that is a must, regardless of what you choose. Diversity and unique models with personality are essential for narrative play and a greater enjoyment of the game, in my opinion. I can’t prove it, but it is true.

Juves can be purchased in a starting list if you like but I prefer to add them in later. Either through purchasing them or simply gaining them in the campaign. Other options like Hangers-On and Brutes should be investigated by the player, both to help choose which gang you would like to play and also for future project idea-mongering.

Really, any gang is as good as any other, but they aren’t all the same. Each has unique choices and options and each will have a different style of play. Have a read of some Necromunda fluff from the Gangs of the Underhive book when trying to decide on a gang. I feel the models for Necromunda are Games Workshop at it’s most brilliant and they all have some allure for me. You can’t go wrong if you just use your eyes and choose based on which boxed set has the most appeal to you personally.

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 Stuck at home with some little alien guys and a half can of yellow spray-paint? I was. Now I have a Genestealer cult.

While players are free to use models from anywhere, the official boxed sets provide you with ten multi-part figures. A value when you consider that the average starting gang will have somewhere between 5 to 9 models. You will have a few extra options for building future add-ins to the gang, which gives you a bit of wiggle room for later expansion.

As I have already mentioned, everyone has access to pretty much everything, once the campaign starts going…your future choices will be dictated by: neat things that your opponent has, and you want, and / or nasty plans you have concocted, based on things your opponents have or have done to you. Who can say how that will all shake out…

When I started writing these articles I had only one gang, half started. Now, I feel more due to excitement, than due to lock-down policies, I have five gangs on the go, at various levels of completion. Each was built after a quick peruse of the rules and I feel they will all function in an enjoyable way on the tabletop. Regardless of what you choose, get building those figures and imbuing them with personality.

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A work in progress. Ghost Bird and (both Champions of) the Hen City Flockers. Those old Zombicide crow swarms will be my Sheen Birds eventually.

I usually have a vague idea of what colours I will be painting each gang and try to limit myself to five or six colours per gang. Spend the time during assembly to have a good look at those tiny fellas and start blocking out surface colours…in your mind. Also, choose a spray-paint base colour that is the most populous colour on your models, if you can, this will really speed up the painting process. Keep at it, or at least check back next month and see me keeping at it.

-Uncle Mike

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