Sunday, 30 July 2017

Wichita Falls - continued.

As the nearest zombie tried to get past the back of the pickup, Hannah rained a flurry of blows around its head and shoulders
- knocking it to the ground, obviously dead!
As this was going on, the zed approaching across the intersection was being targeted from across the street,
 before it too fell to the ground with a feathered shaft through its skull!
Hannah failed to notice the bow shot as she gasped and gripped the edge of the truck, dropping to a crouch clutching a twisted ankle (random event after throwing "snake eyes" for activation!).
Up in the apartment, Travis saw his sister fall from view and assumed the worst!

As he and his companions rushed down the stairs, out on the street a zombie was shuffling along the sidewalk towards the intersection and the third PEF emerged into sight from the alley...
... which Hannah saw was another group of the living dead as she regained her feet, pain lancing up from her damaged ankle.
Suddenly the door to the apartment swung open and Travis emerged onto the street with two of his neighbours!
Sarah and Dwayne faced off against the advancing zeds, while Travis ran over to see if his sister was OK - Sarah's arrow found its mark just as Dwayne overcame his revulsion of seeing the zombies up close for the first time and fired - knowing he couldn't miss at this range........
........ but they must have been "body shots", because they just kept coming! (and of course, more zeds and the Police were now on their way thanks to his gunshots)
Sarah tried to help, but couldn't get a clear shot as Dwayne started flailing away with his knife,
all she could do was look on in horror as Dwayne was grabbed and the hideous creatures started biting him!
With their victim on the ground, the zombies went into a feeding frenzy - Sarah froze to the spot in shock as the zombies attracted by the gunfire started closing in.
Brad, Hannah and Travis spotted the danger and went to help, Brad supporting Hannah with her sprained ankle confronting the waitress coming down the street, while Travis went to grab Sarah who was still paralysed with fear!
Things weren't going well, as the attracted zombies closed in and the ones chowing down on Dwayne's body turned their attention to the group - there was nothing for it but to open fire and risk the consequences. Brad gave the order........ "AIM FOR THE HEAD!" and three pistols barked.
With the nearest of the 'monsters' out of the way and Sarah kinda back to her senses after the shock of the gunfire, Travis suggested holing up back in the apartment, but Brad instinctively ordered them back over the intersection.
The gunshots had predictably brought in more zombies, and a siren could be heard in the distance -
with Hannah injured and Sarah obviously in bad shape, Brad decided their best option was to head back out of town towards the RV (he wasn't happy that the folks running from the diner had headed that way, followed by a pair of zeds, but he kept that to himself), leaving the streets to the living dead...
... for now!

Footnote: I had to quickly knock up stats for Sarah's bow (I didn't realise before I started playing that they're not covered in the ATZ:FFO rules) and simply increased the "impact value" of the crossbow example by one - I'd be more than interested in hearing how anyone else handles them in the game, a quick google on the interweb came up empty.
I also "fudged" a couple of the rules - first off, the cops arrival. To 'improve' solo play, instead of them arriving in a set number of turns after the gunshots, I used an increasing chance of them turning up after the prescribed number of turns. In this instance it was two turns (in the rules) and they'd arrive on a six - then a 5 or 6 the following turn, 4, 5 or 6 the turn after etc until they did show up. The uncertainty of their arrival time helps rule out any "gamesmanship".
Secondly I increased the distance for the "See The Feast" test from 6inches to the standard move distance of 8inches, which just seemed more "realistic" to me at the time if you're that close, you're close enough!

I thoroughly enjoyed playing through this encounter and am now even more hooked on the game than ever, I just hope you've enjoyed reading through the write-up enough to come back and see how the team get on from here!

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Day Three Wichita Falls

Patience Is A Virtue (I need to polish!)

There's plenty of reasons I should have delayed this installment of the ATZ campaign - my printer is playing up and has made a terrible job of the "Mayhem" streets, but I went ahead and stuck them to the cork tiles anyway.
Then, I found out why no-one else has used cork tiles for terrain bases - they've warped, but I laid them flat under a heavy weight to try and flatten 'em. I'll try "laminating" them by gluing more urban printouts on the opposite side, but I used 'em as they are for now.
The TT Combat apartments have had their exteriors 'block painted' but they still need detailing and weathering - but yep, I used 'em anyway and then of course, I haven't yet made specific floor tiles to accommodate the integral sidewalks on the TT buildings!

So, apologies for the state of the terrain, but I just had to find out how Brad and Hannah were getting on in......

Day Three     Wichita Falls

Game Prep: Following the last encounter, Brad and Hannah successfully increased their Rep to 4.
I also came up with a table to randomise what they might find at Travis's location -
10% No trace. He left in a hurry with no clue as to where.
20% He's gone 'somewhere safer' and left a note. (Location to be determined if this is the case)
20% He's in his apartment. Sensibly stayed put and barricaded himself in.
20% Friends & neighbours. He's there with company (dice to determine numbers)
10% Bad news. Travis is DOA (Cause of death to be determined  if this is the sad case)

Set up: Travis lives in an apartment block on the edge of Wichita Falls close to a short line freight track from a local factory.
Brad hides the RV by a disused siding and the pair plan to make their way on foot along the track (having learned the lesson about noise!)
Brad and Hannah leave the track and immediately see zombies to their right and ahead of them among the vehicles
A PEF moves from the diner directly towards them and comes into view...
... resolving as "citizens" who'd spotted them and decided it must be safe enough to make a break for it!
Seeing the panic on their faces, Brad grabs Hannah and drags up the road and clear of the sidewalk
just before they rush past, one of them dropping a hockey stick as she squeezed by the wrecked pick up!
A second PEF moves into LOS, resolving as "Somethings Out There!", raising the Encounter Rating to 6,
and the zeds continued to close in...
..... causing the fleeing citizens to veer away from the road and away down the track.
The two zombies on the track followed them (they were in clear LOS, and were the larger group), and while Brad was covering them, Hannah grabbed the hockey stick and moved to the back of the pickup.

To be continued...................

Saturday, 22 July 2017

"Terrain-ing Programme"

Phew! What a week - on top of my regular (irregular) work schedule, there's been trips to the local airport for a friend at ungodly hours, taking over the "school runs" for an injured colleague, and an afternoon at the hospital with my Dad for a CT scan.
In between times though, I've managed to press on with some urgently needed terrain features!

I'd started painting the barn I got from the really cheap supplier on ebay while Brad and Hannah were still out in the rural areas of north Texas. I'm sure it'll still come in handy at some point in the future!
It needs some detail picking out and then some washes to finish the exterior.
The interior is still a blank canvas....

Then there's a suburban house from TT Combat which I've given a coat of spray primer - well two coats actually, a darker grey on the roof which will be the actual colour.
Just like the 'cheapo' buildings, the TT Combat structures lack interior detail, so any dividing walls will have to be scratchbuilt from foamcore.

I've also just finished assembling a pair of apartment blocks from TT Combat, as I continue the frantic race to build a new urban game board!

Finally, a visit to the local charity shop turned up two well battered Yank cars for 50p. Slightly smaller scale than 1/43rd which I normally use, but they should paint up OK as burned out or well rusted 'wrecks'.
Oh yes, and I assembled and painted another three Mantic zombies. This takes the zed count to 91, so if I continue painting 'in threes' I'll hit the 100 milepost in three more sessions (whoop whoop!)

The hecticity continues apace this weekend, but I hope to get a bit more done during the 'breathing spaces'. Thanks for dropping by, and whatever you're doing this weekend, have a good one!

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Day Two continued.... Childress

I knocked up a very simple 'encounters ruling' for the rest of road trip to Wichita Falls, since ATZ tracks campaigns by the month, but I figured that a lot would be happening during week one of the outbreak while citizens begin the transition to survivor/ganger/zombie fodder.
At key points along the route, I've thrown a red and a white d6 - if red is higher, I roll a d10 on my 'incident table'..... during a zombie apocalypse, even simple problems could turn nasty!

1. Tail end of a traffic jam. (Stuck, and all that NOISE!)
2. Road traffic Accident - all vehs (dice) wrecked, some occupants injured (dice).
3. Junction I need closed by police.(meet & greet)
4. Broken down veh, occupants (dice)are fleeing citizens (meet & greet)
5. RTA - veh's and occupants (dice) are OK, just "sorting it" to clear the road.
6. Hitch-hiker(s) (dice)
7. Wandering zeds (dice as perPEF, but loaded with Z's)
8. What's that noise? Engine trouble????
9. Flat tyre! (when the spare's changed, don't forget to get another!!)
10. Civilization! A farmhouse/truckstop/gas station (dice) Time for a breather??

Brad and Hannah are on the last leg of the drive now, and while Brad is no longer so sure that "the authorities" are going to get this mess sorted anytime soon, Hannah is getting up-tight about getting to her bro'.
Finally, the turn-off for Childress is just up ahead, but just like the outskirts of Amarillo, the police have the road closed off - the detour to the next bridge will take them hours and burn yet more gas!
As the RV approaches the junction, it attracts some unwanted attention (The police replace one PEF and the other two are in the woods in areas 1 and 4, the engine noise only attracts one zombie, but the two characters 'entering the table' attract four more)
Brad and Hannah are totally unaware of the threat as they pull to a stop, switch off the engine and get out to speak with the law officers (The meet & greet goes well with two passes each - 'friendly' and the ER drops to zero!)
Meanwhile, the PEF's move away!....
... while the zombies move in - they have LOS and become frenzied.
Brad just makes it around the RV before the shooting starts (and before he could get jumped by the zombies emerging from the trees)
One officer double taps with his pistol and drops the zed shuffling along the side of the road, while the cop with the semi automatic rifle fires into the group approaching from the wood........
.... continuing the trend for this encounter by NOT attracting anymore zeds!
The PEF's also continue their own trend of 'moving away'!!
Things get tense as the living dead close in.....
.... the rifle cracks again,
and the time spent on the firing range pays dividends
before Hannah fires her first shot in anger....
..... and with a weird sense of pride, Brad sees her drop her target.....
... before he squeezes the trigger...
.... and kills the last of the zombies.
With the threat eliminated, and a 'brothers-in-arms' kinda bond, the rudely interrupted meet & greet resumes.
The police pass on what information they know about the outbreak, and agree to let Brad and Hannah take the Childress road to join the highway into Wichita Falls, even offering to radio ahead to the roadblocks they'd encounter to let them through!
(BTW - That was a successful use of Brad's "Savvy Skill" Joe. What d'ya reckon??)
As the cops cleared the road, they wished Hannah the best of luck in finding her brother,
and with that, they were finally on their way to the city!

Thanks for reading what was definitely the final 'prelim' to the story, once again, any comments are most welcome.