Orktober – The Dust Rats – Mob StructureFiled under: Ere Be Stuff
Enlisting for service
Creating a Dust Rat mob (or “unit”) isn’t hard but there are a few rules that must be adhered to. Firstly, there must be at least three warriors in the unit, although that may include the leader. Secondly, no more than a third of the unit may consist of Planks. Thirdly, they must have enough vehicles to transport them all – this doesn’t mean they have to have specific vehicles, just as long as they can all get around. Lastly, Dust Rat mobs have 100 teef to spend initially, just like all the other mob types.
There’s four kinds of Dust Rat warriors available for hire: Commanding Officers, Veterans, Grunts, and Planks. In terms of transport there are three vehicle types: Bikes, Light Recon Vehicles (LRVs), Support and Salvage Vehicles (SSVs).
All Dust Rat units must be lead by a Commanding Officer (“CO”). With a firm knowledge of command through a strict education in leadership and tactics, Commanding Officers have a lot to live up to. A Dust Rat mob can only have one Commanding Officer.
Veterans are seasoned fighters who are not drawn to command, instead preferring to specialise in their field and leave the decisions to the Sergeant. Veterans are invaluable for providing support for the unit although their methods and armament varies. A mob can have a maximum of one Veteran.
Grunts are ordinary Dust Rat warriors, either in their final year of mandatory service, or having chosen to re-enlist. Grunts are sturdy and dependable and usually form the core of any Dust Rat unit.
At the age of eighteen all able-bodied Dust Rats are required to enter military service for three years. They may choose (up to a point) which unit they are to join, drawing adventurous spirits to the more active and aggressive units. Whilst they lack experience and grit, they are eager to prove themselves and earn the respect of the unit. No more than a third of a Dust Rats mob can be made up of Planks.
Dust Rat bikes differ from Ork and Digga bikes in that they have two wheels rather than a wheel and a track. Most are fitted out to handle very rough terrain at high speed but they are considerably more fragile than anything the greenskins put together.
Light Recce Vehicles
LRVs, or "Recces", are weakly armoured wheeled vehicles used primarily for their manoeuvrability. Usually able to carry four to six Dust Rat warriors, these small trucks are excellent for quickly recovering scrap from the desert due to their light weight, unfortunately this does mean they are highly vulnerable to both enemy fire and ramming.
Support and Salvage Vehicles
SSVs are large wheeled or tracked vehicles used by Dust Rats to carry the majority of the scrap they find, provide transport, and lend supporting fire should it be required. Whilst better armoured than the Light Recce Vehicles, they are not built for speed. If possible Dust Rat units start off with an SSV, although some prefer to acquire one later in their career and spend the savings on equipment.
Dog Tags and Callsigns
Dust Rat units are made up of warriors with names and it’s up to you to name your guys. We’ve included a list to get you started, but you can of course name them whatever you like. Similarly vehicles often have nicknames and the unit itself is going to need a name too. Have a good think about what you’re going to call your guys – the characters that emerge from the ranks over the course of a campaign are one of the best bits! Unit names can be anything from simple designations like the original Whiskey Delta 4 or drawn from old movies and military ops like Able Company or Easy Company. Units occasionally start with a designation and gain a unique nickname. For example a group may start with a simplistic name like Sierra Romeo Three but as they become specialised in perhaps destroying vehicles they go up against they might gain a nickname relating to that.