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New Fallout 4 miniatures game, from Necromunda designer, releases free quickstart rules for narrative bouts

War never changes, but it does get smaller.

Promo shot for Fallout: Factions skirmish wargame
Image credit: Modiphius/Bethesda Softworks

Fallout’s official miniature wargame is expanding its offerings to include a skirmish-sized title - Fallout: Factions. This more lightweight version of Wasteland Warfare will focus on narrative brawls between well-known groups from Bethesda’s popular video game franchise.

Designed by James Hewitt of Necromunda and Adeptus Titanicus acclaim, Fallout: Factions is offering free quickstart rules available as a digital download from publisher Modiphius’ website and DriveThruRPG. The 16-page PDF will run two players through an introduction to the wargame’s basic rules and introduce the kind of clan-based fracas they can expect from the full game.

The demo rules come with two Crew rosters who begin as absolute nobodies trying to survive the nuclear irradiated Wastelands. Matches are both a chance to flex your tactical skills but also help push the narrative of each side - victories and defeats will both move the story forward in different fashions. The full narrative arc will see them become hardened veterans, learning from mistakes and revelling in victories via new skills, advancements, glory and spoils.

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If you’re just grabbing the quickstart rules, you’ll also need several ten-sided dice, a ruler or measuring stick, some bottle caps or coins, optional terrain and non-optional miniatures. Fallout: Factions’ figures are fully compatible with larger sibling Wasteland Warfare if you have any sitting on your shelves. Both sides will choose their ploys before entering combat then face off in teams of five miniatures each to be the last raider, ghoul, Brotherhood of Steel acolyte or vault dweller standing.

If you’re ready to dive headfirst into Fallout-themed skirmish wargaming, Modiphius also has a two-player starter box called Battle for Nuka World, which will contain everything mentioned above that a pair needs to start duking it out. The starter set, which you can pre-order on the publisher’s website, contains all the d10s, miniatures, slot-together terrain, tokens, rulers and rules necessary. Set in the ruins of a theme park celebrating the Fallout universe’s favourite fizzy bev, all this violence will play out against the backdrop of roller coasters, food stalls and more than a few fritzy mechs.

Fallout: Factions’ gameplay is leaner and meaner than the more involved Wasteland Warfare, which revels in sandbox-style encounters with narrative-based objectives derived from the video game and matches that can last two or three hours. By comparison, Factions narrows its scope to pure PvP encounters and streamlined mechanics that should take no more than an hour to wrap up. The crew advancement system replaces the more RPG-style storytelling, but Modiphius is confident it’ll still satisfy players who want to adventure in Fallout’s particular post-apocalyptic America.

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