Alongside the Dahshat Company models I sent to Thunderbrush Studios was a pretty extensive update to my Druze Bayram Security. Druze were my first commission painted army and I played them very extensively a couple of seasons ago. Unfortunately, their limited unit selection and unforgiving playstyle meant I eventually gave up to avoid falling out of love with the game and moved over to Dahshat Company.
With the new edition, Druze have had a bit of an overhaul, and a whole bunch of new units to try out. First up are Kunai Solutions Ninjas. These masters of close combat are armed with long range rifles they're mediocre with. In keeping with Druze Bayram Security's high quality vetting and hiring processes, you can even take two. I picked these up for completionist reasons, and am not exactly expecting them to shine.
Next up is Aida Swanson, a smuggler and secret alien infiltrator. I suspect Druze Bayram Security don't so much have an HR department but rather a creepy guy in a dive bar picking up anyone who's willing to kill people for money and is good at it. The vetting is more "are you a narc?" than checking for war crimes...
Aida is a profile I'm really rather curious about. She forward deploys with submachine guns and viral mines, so is quite capable of messing people up. Lacking a market state, she's not well placed to defend and is more a short ranged attack piece who will kill lightly armoured targets super dead and disrupt the midfield.
Taowu, Mastermind and Schemer is a criminal mastermind who has a side hustle as a futuristic sports star. As you do. With the ability to disguise himself as another model, some nasty close combat tricks and brutal short ranged loadout options, I think he's probably a back-field sweeper model who waits for attackers to get close, then leads an unexpected counter attack.
Security Chief Arslan was available in N3, but the model came out pretty late in the edition and I hadn't gotten around to picking him up. He's a character from the Outrage graphic novel that Corvus Belli published, which is well worth a look if you haven't picked it up.
He's in a weird place as a unit profile. He's got across the board good MI stats with a solid middle of the road weapon load out - MULTI Rifle, Light Shotgun and Viral Pistol gives you solid options for killing most targets, especially with +1 Dam on his shooting. Dodge +3 and No Wound Incapacitation ups his survivability, but the lack of Shock Immunity means he's not as tough has he could be - he's well placed to survive a lucky shot back but shouldn't be trying to defend in the Reactive Turn. The Multispectral Visor L1 rounds him out, meaning he's got gear for pretty much every circumstance.
I kind of love Arslan in N4 because he's such a good example of a character's rules exemplifying a faction's theme. Druze are a criminal organisation with a paramilitary arm, not professional soldiers. They're well equipped veterans despite that, and have a wide range of gear. But they lack some of the top end military options that full armies can deploy.
Mechanically, the biggest deal in terms of new units for Druze Bayram Security is the ability to take Bulleteers. Pan Oceania has clearly decided to sell more of their higher end tech to mercenary companies, probably because they like money. These cheap and cheerful Mimetism -6 gun platforms are super hard to hit, meaning that they can get into a whole bunch of gun fights quite happily.
I have also had an Anaconda painted, but photos will have to wait as she took a small ding in the post and needs some repairs. Once that's done I'll get her up on the blog.
The post shouldn't be taken as a commentary on the overall changes to the faction. The increased fireteam flexibility around Brawlers and Bounty Hunters is in many ways far more of a boost, I suspect. Limiting armies to fifteen models will also help the Druze avoid getting swarmed, which was historically a risk for them. They've also gained the Wulver mercenary Wolfgang and the trans icon engineer Fiddler, but their models are only just coming out now and I've not got them painted just yet.
I'm not planning on diving back into Druze immediately. I've been focussing on the Shasvastii as I get them painted up, although my Defiance Pledge not having turned up means that my first few in person games are going to be Dahshat Company. Still, they're basically a ready to go army and I remain deeply fond of them, so I will certainly get back to them in time . . .