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"Life on the rolling farmstead is a relentless battle, nurturing GenMod crops in scorched and blighted dirt trucks and protecting the meagre harvest from ever mutating parasites and starving marauders. But this young farmhand has a plan. The farm's next stop is a market on the outskirts of GC9, located in an old but active AutoKill Arena. They’ve sunk a full cycle's profit into their TractoRod, upgrading its formidable spiked roller with nano point tips and needlessly supercharging the mighty LandMaster reactor. Now they’re ready to storm in and crush everything in their path. Those GigaCity kids’ll be too busy fumbling for their pretty lasers to get out the way. It’ll be just like herding RadCattle, but messier."

Few things instil fear in your enemies more than getting crushed and shredded by a spiked ton of spinning metal!

Meet the spiked roller from the AutoKill Crush Hour sprue.

As well as a variety of exhausts, armour panels and a mini rocket pod the Crush Hour sprue includes 2 spiked rollers and 2 roller arms.

The spiked roller has two different roller arms, one with a belt drive and one with a bolt. These can be fitted on either side and are sized to fit neatly on the end of the roller extensions.

The arms can be removed from the sprue with either a hobby saw or a pair of snips (cutting against the arm with the flat side of the jaws) and sanded to finish.

The rollers require cutting and sanding to size.

Each roller is 15mm wide with a 4mm extension on the end allowing you to resize them to fit your vehicle. This gives you an optimum roller width of 38mm.

If you need more width you can keep some of the spigot on the end of the extension for that extra 5mm each end. If you’re looking to kit out a really wide vehicle you can even mix in a second sprue giving you an extra 15mm per roller!

When gluing the rollers together you can either pair off the rows of spikes 2 to 3, 3 to 2 etc to get an equal spread of spikes on each row, or align them 2 to 2 and 3 to 3 for a more symmetrical look.

The mounting point of the roller arms will depend on your vehicle, front fenders or front wheel hubs are ideal.

The arms can be extended with strips of Plasticard cut to the required length and glued to their flat inside face.

Spiked Roller Synergies & Tactics

The Spiked Roller is a heavy metallic drum with razor sharp protrusions that rotates and mangles everything in your path. Having this huge and destructive assemblage of machinery bolted to the front of your vehicle means you give out a lot more damage in head on collisions, and its bulk also shields your vehicle somewhat, negating some of the damage incurred. If desired, some of the downsides to this gear can be addressed. The weight of the roller causes some speed and control issues.

To account for the -10mph Safe Speed modifier, the addition of a Turbo can help. This allows an extra inch of movement on Activations where the vehicle is Accelerating. As long as you use an Action to Accelerate towards your target before you collide, you’ll get that additional inch without affecting your Safe Speed. We’ll be taking a closer look at the Turbo upgrade in a later post.

However, for the same price, you can hire Steady Eddie as your Driver. Not only does he bring +10mph Safe Speed, but he also has a +1 Control modifier. With a +2 Decelerate modifier thrown in for good measure, he makes for a far more prudent choice! We’ll provide more insights in to Crew choices and synergies in later posts.

Once you’ve negated the downsides of the roller (or even if you haven’t), it’s time to maximise its effectiveness. It deals out damage just fine all on its own, but if you really want the ability to get up close and personal, the extra movement distance that Nitrous brings is a great choice. Or for the truly brave (or perhaps foolhardy), the SynthHydrazine. Both of these upgrade choices can bring you into contact a lot quicker than your target expects, giving you the upper hand in terms of manoeuvrability and positioning if they pay off. The extra boost these items give will also increase the damage inflicted, the faster you go, the harder you hit. There are of course many more ways you can utilise the properties of this seemingly one note piece of equipment, these are just a few introductory ideas to get you started.

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