Friday, April 20, 2018

Gas and Go!

"I don't care what you guys do on your down time, but if we have to guard prisoners and watch out for the dead, I'd like to think you're standing watch or resting if you need, not screwing in whatever bed is handy."  Dawn said from the back seat as she watched the road going by.

Jack stammered a reply as he drove swerving slightly "I uh...well we..."  He swallowed hard and blushed at Dawn's accusation.

Traci punched Jack's arm.  Turning to Dawn she replied,  "If you had wanted, you could have joined in..."  Laughing at Dawn's shocked look, Traci continued "Don't be such a prude, we're alive, we should all have fun while we can!"

Dawn shook her head, blushing slightly at the suggestion.  "I don't care what you do.  Just make sure  it doesn't take the place of what your supposed to be doing."

Jack laughed nervously "Let's not fight, ladies."  As both women shot Jack dirty looks he continued "It looks like that gas station is just ahead."
Entering the area

It is afternoon of day 71, the group has left the farmhouse and gangers behind.  They are stopping at a small country service station, hoping to find gas.  For this scenario, I am increasing the ER to 5 (from 1 for a rural scenario) but there are 2 units of fuel placed near the middle of the table.  The team can gather these just by searching where the red gas can is placed.
Gas Can Objective

There are three PEFs and 8 zombies on the board to begin with.  The gas can is located in the back of the silver pickup truck parked next to the gas pumps.  The group enters on the road, Jack driving.  My plan is to drive as close as possible to the gas station and grab the fuel and drive off.  Easy peasy.
Just a short drive in the country
Things start quiet, I just keep moving towards the gas station.  The first turn the zombies don't activate, and I decide on the next turn to stop a bit short and start clearing them out.
Time to get into action!
Dawn hopped out of the car, pulling out her machete as she ran towards the zombies.  "Let' get at 'em!"
Jack stepped out of the driver's door, firing his SMG at a pair of zombies in the road.  One fell as a bullet tore through its rotten head.  "Ha!  One down!"
Traci started to follow Dawn, but had her shot blocked as Dawn sliced the head off of the first zombie she attacked.  Shaking her head, Traci turned and fired past Jack, killing the second zombie in the road.  Looking back at Dawn she snorted "Showoff."
The first PEF moves closer
The survivors get off to a good start, killing three zombies.  When the zombies activate, the first PEF moves closer and resolves.
Who is this guy?
"Hey!  Don't shoot!"  The bedraggled young man in hunting camo yelled as he ran from the nearby tents.  "Just stay cool!"
"We're kinda busy!'  Dawn yelled back as the nearby zombie shambled towards her.  "If you want to help we'd be glad!"
Traci cocked out her hip and tossed a wave at the man.  "Come on honey!  I'd love to play!"  She gave him a come hither look.  "What's your name?'
With a big grin her answered "Chad!"  Raising his assault rifle, Chad started jogging towards the group.
Chad joins the team
We meet Chad, a survivor, Rep3 armed with an assault rifle and the Brawler attribute.  His rep is a bit low, but he will make for a good addition once he gets a little experience.  Even without, he is a welcome addition.  Things continue to be exciting as the zombies get a free turn, and we get another PEF reveal.
Now what?
A sudden crash of shattering glass and the thud of bodies broke the silence on the road.  Four zombies tumbled out of a broken window from the service station.  As they stumbled upright, they started towards Dawn and Traci.  At almost the same time a corpse stood up between the two women, rising from a pile of leaves, neither had seen it earlier.
"Well that's just great!"  Traci yelled as she saw the zombie.  "Are you just going to run past these?"
Dawn took aim with her pistol on the mass of dead.  She snapped back "What is you problem?  Just deal!"
The last PEF moves in
Well, great bring on the last PEF!  It actually turns out to be "Something is out there" and the ER increases to 6.  The spawned zombie between Traci and Dawn charges Traci, but she easily wins the charge roll and shoots it before it gets to her.
Traci shoots the zed...dead.
When it rains...  Next turn starts with doubles, so we get a random event.
Zombies everywhere!
Now zombies appear on 5+.  Not too bad, but it will make a difference if I keep shooting so much.  When initiative is finally settled, the zombies go first.  Great.  Just great.
At least Dawn is closest...
Dawn shoots one zombie as they charge and easily finishes off the remaining three in melee.  I want to be quiet as possible, so after Jack shoots the last zombie near him, I have Dawn split off to take on the zombies moving along the barricade.  Everyone else will go after the gas, so they can split if we need to.
Dawn clearing up zombies in melee
One more zombie arrives from Jack's shooting, the zombies shamble towards Dawn and she kills them one at a time.  It's not the most efficient, but it is quiet.  Eventually, Dawn faces the last zombie and I have the rest of the group grab the gas.
Dawn finishes off the last active zombie
 Dawn shook her machete clean as she kicked free of the undead farmhand she had just decapitated.  Turning around she jogged towards the wreckage of a Subaru, and a lone zombie office worker.  "Grab that gas and we'll get out of here!"
Traci lowered her SMG, shaking her head.  "Whatever you say queen bee."  She said and walked towards the pickup truck near the gas pumps.  Jack and Chad jogged past her and started grabbing the gas cans they found in the truck bed.

Jack and Chad grab the gas
So the table has no zombies, they have two units of fuel, which is enough to travel further east.  Mission successful!  Of course, there are a few buildings I could check out... 
Time to go find trouble
I decide to check the various buildings and cars that might have some loot.  I know I should just leave, but with an additional survivor, it helps increase the chances of finding something, and really, the risk is pretty low.
The store is clear, and empty
Traci dumped out an empty cardboard box, dumping some paper and a few empty beer cans on the floor.  "This sucks."  She said, disappointed.  "This place has been picked over."
"We can check that garage and the cars around here."  Jack offered.  "Maybe there is still something in one of cars."
In the garage they find some food!
Chad lifted the garage door, the springs taking over as he lifted it over his head.  The garage looked mostly empty, a few crates and pallets littered the floor.  As the group looked through the debris, Chad found a small box filled with protein bars.  "Bingo!  It's not great but there's a bunch bars here!"
Traci clapped and flashed Chad a smile.  "Great find there honey!"  she said and giggled as the group moved on towards the car wrecks.
A ruined SUV and convertible are empty
Jack and Dawn rummaged through the trunk of the red convertible.  Aside from some soiled clothes, there wasn't anything of interest.  Even the spare tire and jack were missing.  "Nothing much here."  Jack offered.  "You guys find anything in the SUV?"
Chad stepped out from the back, looking around nervously.  "What?  No...nothing."  He stammered. 
Traci giggled as she walked into the road behind Chad and said over her shoulder "I thought I found something...Maybe not though."
Dawn was not amused.  "Pay attention you two.  If you're going to play grab-ass wait until we stop for the day and someone else is on watch."
Traci harrumphed, giving a pouty look back at Dawn.  "We're just having a little fun.  The damn SUV was empty." 
Time to go to church
The small country church opened easily.  It was empty, but someone had used it as a shelter and left in a hurry recently.  Jack found a backpack with bottles of water and some cans of soup and vegetables still stowed inside.  He held u his find as the rest of group finished their search.  "Hey, at least it's not beans!"
Chad gave a short laugh, but was quiet when he saw the cool looks Dawn and Traci were exchanging.
What about the camp?
Chad pointed at the tents, leading the group towards the small camp.  "I was just checking these out when I ran into you guys."  He gestured at the parked minivan and some of the scattered debris of the camp.  "There's bound to be something here."
After a few minutes, Traci pulled a cardboard box out of a tent, the rattle of glass jars echoing from it as she opened her find.  "Sweet!  We got some jam and pickles!"  Traci giggled and gathered up the jars.
"Well, it looks like we've picked this place clean."  Dawn said.  "Let's get moving."
Back to the car
You know, things went very well, I found 3 units of food and no threats.  The turn after they start the car, we get a random event.  Looks like it's time to pay for the easy searching!
A dog?  Really?
I randomize the direction the dog approaches from - of course straight ahead!  At least the car should be able to just plow through the undead!
Bad dog!  No biscuit!
"What the hell is that?"  Jack said and stopped the car before it rolled forward very far.  Loud barking echoed in the street and a large brown dog ran up to the car, jumping around the front and the passenger door.
"Wow, somebody's dog!"  Chad said.  "Looks like he's being chased!"
Traci opened her door and waved at the pooch.  "Come on boy!" she yelled, trying to coax the animal into the car.
"Are you nuts!"  Dawn yelled.  "That thing could be diseased or dangerous!  Leave it alone!"
Traci ignored Dawn and tried to get the dog to enter the car.  "Come on!  Come here boy!"
Dawn looked at the zombies wandering closer and yelled "Jack, punch it and get us out of here!"
Jack speeds into the zombies
The dog wouldn't join the group and he moved off.  Jack speeds ahead and crashes into the zombies.  Somehow, he manages only one success for each zombie he crashes into - and they match his successes, meaning all the zombies dodge!  It's then the zombies turn and they charge the car - and we repeat the whole process, with one zombie falling under the car and being killed.  Icouldn't believe it...
Zombies can dodge?
Zombies charge the car!
The final charge doesn't stop Jack from driving away the next turn.  I expected one of the zeds to somehow disable the car at the very last second...

Jack drove for the rest of the afternoon, taking country roads and avoiding towns.  As the fuel gauge approached empty and the sun was getting low, he asked "Any plan for where to stop?"
Dawn looked ahead, they were near a construction site, it looked like there was some utility work being done on a wayside stop.  She pointed towards the wayside "Pull in there.  We'll look for a supervisor shack and hole up for the night."
Jack parked the car near a small mobile home looking shack, after a quick check the group settled in for the evening.  As everyone found a spot sleep, Dawn offered "I'll take the last watch.  Traci you start, then Chad and Jack.  We should all get plenty of sleep."

As the half moon cast it's pale light through a small window, Traci shook Jack awake.  "Shhhh.  It's late and I need you to listen."  Jack looked at Traci with concern but nodded.  "I can't keep this up.  She is going to get us all killed, and I'm not convinced she has a clue where she's going."
Jack started to answer but Traci put a finger on his lips.  "Just listen, love.  I'm not saying she's that bad, but I'm cutting out of here.  I've got my share of the food, a couple of guns and my stuff."  She ran her hand down Jacks chest, knowing the reaction she was getting.  "We've had soem fun, come with me and we can keep playing..."
Jack glanced at Dawn sleeping nearby, her deep rhythmic breathing confirming she was still asleep.  He thought for a minute, but shook his head at Traci when he turned back.  "She saved my life more than once.  She'd never bail on us - you're a fool to leave."
Traci smirked and shrugged.  "I figured you might want to stay.  Chad and I are leaving."  She stood and Chad joined her from the shadows.  "You watch out for her,"  Traci pointed at Dawn "She is getting bossier and bitchier.  Don't put up with it forever, you deserve more."
Before Jack could answer, Chad and Traci had slipped out the door and into the night.  Tomorrow was going to be a long day.

The keeping it together check was a disaster!  Dawn only gets two successes, Not great, but it shouldn't be too bad I figure.  Jack only gets one success, as long as the dice keep this up, no problem!  Traci gets four successes and leaves, poisoning Jack and Chad!  To add insult to injury, Chad rolls three successes, I figure he splits with Traci.

This was tough to write up, the group was looking pretty good and then it all fell apart!  I will split up the gear the group has and Dawn and Jack will have to continue on their own.  At least they are about half way there...

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

No Escape

It was late at night, but Dawn still relished her chance at a hot shower.  Dropping her fresh clothes on one side of the vanity, she checked the bathroom door one last time, making sure it was locked before she set her machete and pistol down on the vanity in the master bathroom.  Looking in the mirror she hardly recognized herself; blood and grime matted her auburn hair, bruises spread along her arms and she sported a black left eye and ugly blue-green bruise from her hairline down to her left shoulder.  She had bruises and cuts all over, and scars from several bullet wounds that nearly ended her journey.
As she stepped into the steaming water, Dawn realized how long it had been since she was really clean.  It seemed like a lifetime ago that she was heading to work at the bank, only to have the zombie apocalypse throw the world into chaos.  She hurt in places she didn’t remember injuring, and felt the sting from open wounds when she washed.  After four repeats she felt her hair was as close to clean as she was going to get.
Stopping the water and climbing out into a towel, Dawn used a second towel to dry her hair.  She contemplated what to do about the prisoners they had.  One of them had nearly killed her yesterday; she still felt the open cut a piece of buckshot had left on her neck.  Using a found brush she untangled her hair before braiding it up.  Picking up the clean clothes she had found, Dawn dressed listening to the rain slowly dissipating outside.
“I hope we don’t have to kill them.” She muttered, picking up her weapons.

It is day 68, the group has sheltered for the night in the farmhouse.  They have managed to clean up, at least by post-apocalyptic standards, and really just want to rest and recover.  Everyone has been wounded and the team needs to recover.  The three prisoners taken yesterday may make that difficult.
To start, everyone is in the house.  The group is rotating through guarding and resting.  They will take a turn at interrogation to try and find out what they can about the gang.  Given the chance, the gang members will try and escape or attack the survivors, but they will need to work to get free.

For each day part, each character will get two actions – the survivors can recover, guard, interrogate or investigate.  The gangers can recover, struggle, agitate or escape.  While this is happening, each day part will resolve a PEF, starting at ER1.  Any result that increases ER does so.  If there is a ‘contact’ and it is any living result, then the gang has found the house and depending on the situation they may attack or negotiate with the group.  Otherwise it is ignored.

This is going to be a bunch of rolling of skill checks, and that may or may not lead us to some action.

Recover:  This represents rest to heal from wounds.  Everyone is wounded to some extent, and need to take a number of these actions equal to their rep to function at full rep.  Successful rest is passing 2d versus normal rep.
Guard:  The survivors need to have at least one person watching the gangers at all times.  While guarding, they roll a die equal to current rep, each success counts against the ganger actions during that action period.
Interrogate:  This is an opposed PEP check.  The results will work similar to Meet and Greet results, as fa as good/neutral/bad results.  If the survivors have more successes, they gain information on the gang, if the gang member scores more, they successfully give false information, if tied, no info is gained either way.  Each model involved rolls a die equal to their current rep, similar to a meet and greet. 
Investigate:  Any survivor can ‘use’ info gained by any interrogation to try a savvy check to figure out what the gang may be up to.  A success with this can be used to either cancel a PEF contact for the gang showing up, or to alert them to an escape attempt by the prisoners.
Struggle:  As prisoners, this represents getting free of the restraints.  In this case they are hasty and improvised, so any model that gets 2 success on a rep check (# dice =rep) can break free.  This check is opposed by any guard, and the guard’s successes count against all the prisoners.  For example, if a guard has one success, the prisoners would need to make 3 successes to break free.  A successful investigate by another model will allow them to react when the prisoners first break out.
Agitate:  The prisoners try and cause trouble for the survivors.  This can be needing bathrooms, food, water, issuing threats, complaints, trying to ingratiate with the survivors, etc.  This is a 2d check versus PEP or SAV, and successes can be used to cancel guard or investigate successes.
Escape:  When the time comes if the gangers can break free, they can elect to try and escape or attack the survivors.  Each model will roll 2d, 2 passes is attack, anything else is try to flee.  They will break a window and make a run for it, just like a fleeing model in a normal game.  If the gang has shown up (PEF has resolved to human contact) they will join back to the gang and d3 day parts later the gang will attack with strong numbers.  If the gang has not shown up yet, the escapee will make it back to the gang on a successful 1d roll versus current rep.  If successful, the gang attacks as above.  If not, the escapee is considered killed.

Ready to Roll:  If the survivors manage to get to fully recovered, they can choose to move on.  They will spend an action loading their car and then can just drive away.  In this case they will leave the prisoners with improvised melee weapons, but alive.  If they have 0-2 investigate successes they will approach the nearby town of Bloomer, where the gang is based.  If they have 3-5 investigate successes, they will drive away from Bloomer, starting a new scenario as they look for fuel to move to a new region.  If they have 6+ success, they will try to infiltrate the gang camp and steal supplies.  I’m hoping they have 3-5…
Gang Arrival:  If the PEF resolves as human contact, a patrol from the gang has shown up.  A group of 5 gangers, led by a deserter will make their way from the center of the board edge towards the house.  This will start a normal scenario with the gang approaching the house.  Each turn, there is a chance they are spotted, a survivor on guard needs to pass a 2d heck to see them.  Anyone else needs to pass a 2d check at rep-3.  If prisoners are not known, they will have a standard meet and greet when contact is made.   Escape attempts or agitation successes will alert the gang to the prisoners and they will immediately become hostile.  The gang will try to recover any escapee and escape, or will try to escape if they are alerted to the prisoners.  If any gang member escapes, they will proceed to Gang Attack, below. 
Gang Attack:  This is response to an escapee or alert to there being prisoners.  A major force of gangers, made up of mostly deserters, will attack the farm.  They will be in three groups of 5 models, all armed with AR, grenades and one model in each group armed with a SAW.  These groups will enter from the board edge opposite the house.  At the same time, a group of 6 gangers, armed with shotguns and melee weapons will enter along the road where the survivors first entered, they will attempt to enter the house and free prisoners.  This will be a very well-coordinated and deadly attack; these guys are trained soldiers and battle hardened.  They will pursue fleeing characters, attempting to kill rather than take prisoners.  Survivors can successfully surrender if they have more investigate successes than the prisoners have agitate successes.  Otherwise it will be combat to the end.

Survivor Conditions:
·         Dawn – Rep 3 (5), BAP, SMG, Machete, Protected
·         Jack – Rep 4 (5), SMG, BAP, Machete, Protected
·         Traci – Rep 3 (5), SMG, BAP, Bat, Protected
Jack has recovered the most, Traci is still in shock from losing Beckie, Dawn has been carrying the team for a couple of days and really needs a break.

Ganger Conditions:
·         ‘Shotgun’ Sam – Rep 2 (3) unarmed
·         ‘Runaway’ Carla – Rep 2 (3) unarmed
·         ‘Pistol’ Gary – Rep2 (3) unarmed
The prisoners were all OOF yesterday and need to recover.  They are unsure of what to make of Dawn and company, but they know the rest of the gang will be looking for them in the next couple of days so they will try and escape if they get the chance.
Not interesting scenery, but it will work
Dawn was restless, exhausted but unable to relax.  Every time there was a noise she didn't recognize, she was worried that Jack was in trouble with the gangers.  Traci snored from her bed, clearly not bothered by the situation.  Sleep eventually came, but Dawn's dreams were filled with feelings of running and loss.

I focus on getting Dawn rested, she and Traci will need the most rest to recover.  The gangers also take some time to try and recover, they need to get their reputation recovered if they want to have a real chance to escape.  After a couple of turns, Dawn has only made one recovery roll.  The gangers don't make any, so that helps.  It's fairly boring, everyone is just trying to recover...
The ER finally increases
Carla elbowed Gary, nodding at Jack who looked nearly half asleep.  Gary grunted and looked at her and Jack.  "I think I can get out and get that shotgun away from him."
Gary shook his head.  "I ain't all here and Sam is nearly dead asleep.  We need to wait some."
Carla harrumphed and sat looking daggers at Jack.  "I'll get a chance."  She muttered.

One of the gangers, Carla is nearly recovered.  The other two are malingering, not having any successes.  It's close to the end of the first day and the ER finally increases by 1.  The odds of the gang discovering the group have increased.
Later, Dawn has a discussion with Gary
"Look, I told ya.  We have all kinds of groups out lookin for stuff."  Gary said, rubbing his still wounded shoulder.  "Just let me lay down.  My arm is killn me!"
Dawn pointed at the map, trying to get Gary to reveal more about the gang.  "If you have that many groups, how are you still able to find anything?"

Dawn finally gets fully rested, and I have Traci and Jack trade places to have Dawn interrogate one of the gangers.  She manages to get one piece of info, but by the end of the day the ER increases again.  This is happening quicker than I figured!

A few more turns go by, Carla is fully healed and manages to get free!  Fortunately neither of the other gangers manages to get free.  She rolls two success, and decides to fight her way out, charging Traci.
Traci is surprised as Carla charges!
Traci tightened up the improvised rope binding on Sam.  He had nearly wiggled free, but she saw him working on his hands and made sure he wasn't getting free.  Her thought turned again to Beckie, and she wished she could see her again.  Walking back to the chair she was using as a guard post, she heard a slam from the front room where Dawn was 'talking' with the other ganger.  She shook her head, glad she wasn't dealing with that.
A slight creak from a spring in the couch made Traci turn, just in time to see Carla charging her!

Carla wins the charge roll, and Traci is considered unarmed for the first round.  Carla is unarmed as well, so it becomes a pretty even match, as Traci still has not recovered and is operating at Rep 3.  I consider having some sort of contested roll as they struggle for the shotgun, but instead, I just run the melee as a straight fight.  I figure there is no in sight checks, as they start in sight of each other (never mind the flavor text!) so we just have the charge and fight rolls.
The fight results...
Carla held the barrel of the shotgun in an iron grip, keeping it pointed away as she punched at Traci's face with her right hand.  Traci twisted trying to wrench free, trying to avoid the wild punches.  The two women struggled for what seemed like minutes until Traci managed to plant a solid kick into Carla's stomach.  As Carla doubled over, Traci wrenched the shotgun free, and swung the shotgun down, clipping Carla in base of her skull with the butt of the shotgun.
With a sickening crack, Carla slumped to the floor like a rag doll.  Traci immediately swung the shotgun to ready, worried the woman would attack again.
"You bitch!  You killed her!"  Sam yelled, struggling to get free.  "I'll kill you!"  He screamed.

Traci gets lucky, winning the combat by 1 success, and rolls a 1 for damage, indicating an outright kill.  Ouch.  That could have just as easily gone the other way.  This makes me figure on trying to get the group ready to leave as soon as possible.
Another escape attempt soon?
I manage to turn the info from the interrogations into some useful info and everyone is fully rested.  I start trying to get ready to leave and Sam manages to break free.  He passes 2d and charges Jack on guard duty.  It doesn't go well for Sam, Jack wins the charge roll, takes one shot and Sam goes OOF.  Short escape attempt...
Just before the escape attempt
Dawn carried the SAW out to the car.  The back of the station wagon looked like an armory from some 80's action movie.  Dawn shook her head looking at it.  Traci dropped a cardboard box full of canned food in with the weapons, adding a gallon jug of water to the supplies.  "Looks like we're ready for a war!"  She rubbed her bruised jaw.  "I hope we don't see any more of this gang.  They are crazy."
"We're going to head north and east."  Dawn said, pointing down the nearby road.  "From what we've heard from them," Dawn thumbed over her shoulder at the house "they are scavenging north and west.  Once we get a little ways east, we should be able to find some gas and then get far away from here."
Traci looked towards the east, the midday sun washing out the fields in the distance.  Shrugging she hefted her SMG and tossed her backpack into the car.  "I'm ready.  What about the last two?"
Dawn looked at the house, hand on her pistol.  "We'll leave the tied up.  they've already shown they can get loose."  Dawn walked towards the house for a last check.  "We're not murders.  Not unless we have to."

Everyone is recovered, and the group is moving on.  They will need to find a unit of gas before they can change areas completely.  They manage to find a small gas/service station in the country.  We'll see what they find there...
Just a quick stop...

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Some Small Projects

Just a quick recap of a few items from the workbench.  I have a couple of scenery items and a couple of Horrorclix zombies.  These have been staring at me from the workbench for a while, I was glad to finish them off finally.

First thing I did was build a Plast Craft Games building I got for Christmas.  It's from the EWAR 28 line.  It's listed as a grocery, part of the WW2 France building collection.  It is printed foamcore that basically snaps together, with some parts getting glued.  It built very quickly, I think I had it done in under 30 minutes!  It has a basic interior, and as a bonus, it comes with a destroyed version as well.  It's not spectacular, but it makes a nice building for the table.
Nice small package
It will work best as part of a wargame, like Bolt Action.  As it has a destroyed version, it fits nicely that wherever it is located on the table, if it is destroyed, you have that version ready to go.  Nice idea, and it works well enough.  I had hoped for a ground floor, but I can deal with it being a single large room on the ground.
Some of the parts
It comes flat packed and is very clean and very well printed.  I'd love to see some other buildings like this.  If I get a chance I'll look at getting a few more, they have some townhouses that would be good for urban filler.  I have left off the French sign for now.
Dawn checks out the building
Interior Upstairs
The ruined base
In addition, I painted up a Dark Heaven Bones dumpster.  I'm happy with how it turned out.
Dumpster in blue
I had a busted toy van I found last summer and it's been just sitting.  I finally based it and turned it into a wreck.
Toy car wreckage!
I love taking old and broken toys and making them scenery.  This car was busted up for me already, no wheels and a crushed top.  Some black and rust paint makes it a decent wreck.
This van has seen better days!
Finally I have two zombie cops from Horroclix.  I just did some painting, added some gore and based them on smaller bases.  The Horroclix line has some fun models, and they make for good additional zombies in the horde.  Too bad they are getting hard to find.
Two zombie cops
That's it for the update.  I'm hoping to get more productive, as well as figuring out how Dawn and company are going to handle their prisoners!
Lady!  You can't park that here!

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Shelter from the Storm

Traci sat in the gloom of early morning, the rhythmic breathing from Jack and Dawn the only sounds in the room.  She shifted in the chair slightly, glancing at the window facing the driveway, lost in the murky purple of the night.  It had been a long day and she longed for more sleep, but someone needed to keep watch.
“Oh Beckie.”  Traci whispered, once again feeling the pain of losing her closest friend.  “I wish you were here.”  Traci cried again, the loss still fresh and painful.  She watched the night as she remembered how Beckie was always on her side.  “What can I do?”
Traci spent hours looking and thinking of her situation.  As the world lightened, turning to deep blues before pre-dawn light began to return the world to color, Traci looked at the farm around her.  “I’m no farmer.”  She mumbled, thinking of all she had done to survive before.  Shivering at some of her memories, Traci worried for her future.
As the morning sun finally lit the bedroom, Jack and Dawn stirred from their sleep.  Traci yawned, asking “Well, what do we need to do first today?”
Early morning at the farm
It is morning of Day 67.  There are 6 zombies in the area and the ER is 2, with zombies appearing on a 6.  The group has decided to stay and recover in the farm they found the day previously.  This will be a modified secure the area scenario, they must successfully complete several tasks, and the time it takes to finish will impact the next scenario.
The task list:
1.       Secure the area: Four PEF markers are placed roughly 12” from each corner.  They will not move and need to be ‘checked’ by approaching with 6” of them.  They will be handled as a PEF when checked.
2.       Clear the house: It will take 8 turns of activity by one character in the house and another 8 turns moving to whatever location is chosen outside the house to clear the dead from the house.  The designated disposal location must be at least 8” from the house.
3.       Search the house: A thorough search of the house will allow for 10 search draws.  The group will automatically gain one luxury item each from completing the search, regardless of what, if anything, is found.
4.       Check the barn: The barn needs to be explored.  It will be treated as a normal empty building.  It will have 2 areas to check for occupants and searching.
5.       Generator: One unit of fuel needs to be transferred to the generator.  One character needs to pass a savvy check to start the generator correctly.  The generator when running rolls 3 dice for zombie spawns.  On any of the savvy checks, a result of all 6’s will cause a fire, with catastrophic results.   Three savvy checks by characters within 4” of the generator will reduce the noise output and reduce zombie spawning by 1 die for each 2d success.
6.       Water: One character needs to pass two savvy checks to get fresh water running in the house.  As a bonus, a third check will give hot water as well.
7.       Check the jeep: The jeep needs to be searched for a total of 4 turns (1 character for 4 turns, 2 for 2 turns, etc.).  Once searched, each character gets a number of chances to roll a 9+ on a d6+rep to gain insight on the jeep’s origin.
8.       Stage the car: The groups car needs to be parked somewhere, this will be its default position in future scenarios at this farm.
9.      Barricade the house: There are 4 windows (DV0) and 2 doors (DV1) to be barricaded.  Per the normal rules, these can be improved by spending 1 turn working on them.

This is going to be a busy day.  There is a chance that they manage to get everything done in the morning, or this could drag out all day.  To simulate this, each time doubles come up for initiative; it will signal a time change is imminent.  D6 turns after the doubles, the time will change.  This cannot happen on the first turn, nor can it happen on the turn following a time change.  Instead of setting a number of turns or playing until I’m done, I will play with a 60 minute (real time) time limit.  At one hour, I will call the game and evaluate the success/failure.  It should keep me moving!

There are separate rewards for each task:
1.       Required for victory.
2.       + 1 success on Keeping it together rolls while in the area.
3.       + 1 success on next meet and greet.
4.       Required for victory.
5.       + 1 success on Keeping it together rolls while in the area.
6.       + 1 (+2 if hot water) success on Keeping it together rolls while in the area. 
7.       + 1 success on next meet and greet.
8.       No additional bonus.
9.    No additional bonus.

If either 1 or 4 is not completed successfully, the scenario will be a failure, and the group will need to find a new place to try and rest.

"Let's start with cleaning house."  Dawn said as the group finished their breakfast of canned fruit and crackers.  "We'll dump the bodies in the field behind the silo."
Jack nodded, brushing crumbs from his mouth.  "Sounds good, this place is already stating to smell from those things."  Rubbing his nose and grimacing at the smell.  "I'll check the genny when I can also."

I figure they are starting in the house, they all might as well grab a dead zombie and get the clearing started.  They move out of the house, Traci not quite keeping up with the other two on the second turn.
Dawn and Jack dump the first two bodies
One of the nearby zombies manage to get to Dawn on their turn.
Dawn faces her first zombie of the day
Dawn finishes off the zombies and Traci moves up to dump her first body off.  Things are going well enough, and then I get my first doubles.  The morning goes by quickly!
Traci drops off her first
There's not a penalty for moving through the day for this scenario, but if gets dark that will limit visibility.  I get very lucky with the random event from the doubles!
Well that is a great development!
This effectively makes shooting free, no chance of zombies appearing.  This will make things much easier, and move faster.
Zombies close in
The zombies get a free turn and close on Traci and Dawn.  The next turn, Dawn runs around the tires and checks the first PEF.  Traci runs back to the house, she and Jack will both be cleaning out the house.
Dawn checks the PEF
The PEF is nothing, and the next turn, Dawn charges the zombies closing in on the designated dumping ground for the dead.
Dawn attacks the zombie
Jack runs out and dumps a body and the next turn, the zombies go first.  Two charge Dawn but she handles them easily, shooting one and taking the last down in melee.
Dawn handles two zombies as Jack dumps a body
The zombies go first the next turn, I added a shot of the timer as it's been a quick 15 minutes.  I still need three PEFs and the Barn checked.  Luckily there is only one zombie left on the table.
One quarter of the way done
Dawn leveled her pistol at the undead farmhand's head.  Squeezing off a shot, she watched it slump to the ground, dead.  Jack flashed a "thumb's up" as he ran back into the house.  Traci hauled another body to the field, dumping before heading back herself.  The noon sun was getting hot, the June day feeling very summer like.
"I'm checking the barn!"  Dawn yelled at Traci before turning and jogging towards the structure.
Dawn checks the second PEF
The PEF increases the ER by 1, now it is 3.  Otherwise, nothing...
Dawn enters the barn
Inside the barn was dim and stuffy.  Boxes and sacks were seemingly stacked haphazardly around the floor, creating different areas.  Dawn cautiously moved through the barn, looking at the various tools and parts scattered around.  A small scuffing sound brought her alert and as she rounded a small stack of barrels, a middle aged man with a rifle huddled against the wall.
"I ain't lookin for any trouble."  He said with a drawl.  "Just let me walk away and we won't have any problems."
Dawn stayed guarded, but relaxed her aim.  "No trouble.  We're clearing out the farm to stay for a bit.  My name's Dawn."
"Victor."  Came the reply.  "I ain't stickin around here.  I'm moving north, last I 'eard the guvment had some safe spots up near the border.  They say the dead freeze, so I'm counting on winter."  Victor relaxed, shouldering his rifle and slinging a pack.  Picking up an axe, he added "If you're interested, y'all can come with me."
Dawn shook her head, and answered "No, we've got friends east of here.  We're heading there."
Dawn meets Victor
Dawn finds one area empty, and a survivor in the second.  He is Rep 4, armed with a bolt action rifle.  He scores 4 passes and Dawn only 3 in the meet and greet.  Darn, another set of hands would have been helpful!  He will leave the area over the next few turns, not a threat and adding nothing to the teams successes.
Dawn moves out as Victor leaves

Dawn jogged through the fields, moving to check out a car wreck along the nearby road.  She heard Jack working on the generator, judging by the obscenities he was using, it wasn't going well.  Traci was dragging the last body out of the house.  Dawn checked the sky, clouds were moving in from the west, threatening the summery afternoon with rain.  Dawn shook her head and moved on towards the road.
Dawn checks the third PEF at the halfway point
At the half time mark, Dawn checks the third PEF and finds another 'something out there' and the ER moves up to 4.  There is one final PEF to check, just down the road from her position.  Traci hauls out the final zombie and moves to help Jack with the generator.  Each success (up to 3) they make after the generator is started reduces the zombie spawning from it by 1 (at 3 it becomes 0).
Jack gets the generator running as Traci dumps the last body
Things are going pretty well.  Dawn just has one final PEF to check and I will have gotten everything done for success.  Traci and Jack continue to work on the generator, I'd like to get that sound reduced for any future scenario here.
The last PEF
Sergeant David Collins checked his M-4 once again.  He looked at the rest of his 'squad' of armed survivors from the base.  They found the missing scavenger jeep at this farm, but several strangers were here.  There was plenty of fresh blood around, and plenty of dead zeds.  He felt uneasy, this could be trouble.  "Stay ready, we'll see if they stay separated."  He whispered to the former civilians.
As they watched, one woman made her way towards them, walking along the road.  She was cautious, but not very wary David thought.  Looking at her weapons, he was impressed - she clearly was ready for the undead, but maybe not the living.  "When she gets close, follow my lead, we'll see what they're made of."
Dawn walked along the road, her pistol and machete ready and her SMG slung on her back.  She was worried at the gathering storm clouds, that may be a major storm about to hit them.  Time to check the fence area...
"DOWN!  Throw down your weapons!" David yelled as his group sprang up from the culvert they were hunkered down in.  He watched the woman freeze, but she didn't drop her gun.  "Fire!" He yelled...
Dawn finds 5 gang members!
Well, *$%#&!  Dawn triggers the last PEF and it is a contact.  Of course its gangers, and I get 5 of them!  The leader is rep 5, armed with an assault rifle.  I decide he is another deserter and is also protected.  The rest of group are all rep 3, but one is armed with a shotgun and the others with pistols.  Of course the meet and greet ends up going to a 'walk the walk'.  At least Dawn pulls out a ton of successes in that!
Twenty minutes to go and a gang to fight
As gunfire erupts, Dawn shoots and hits the leader and the female ganger next to him.  She gets a killed outright result on the leader (rolled a 1 for result on her BAP) and knocked down on teh woman, who only passes 1d and is out of the fight.
Dawn shoots 2
The return fire is tough.  The two gangers with pistols manage to miss outright on all of their shots!  The shotgun is a different story.  He get 2 hits, one is an outright kill.  Luckily she has Hard as Nails, and suffers only a second knock down.  Dawn passes both knock down checks with 2d each and gets to carry on.  her body armor and rep of 5 have carried her through some amazing situations.
Dawn is knocked down, but not out
Traci and Jack both snapped up and turned at the sound of gunfire.  "Dawn was over there!"  Traci yelled, sprinting for the end of the house and towards the chatter of gunshots.
"Go! I'm right behind ya!"  Jack yelled as he grabbed his SMG and ran towards the sound, a few steps behind Traci.
Fifteen minutes left and Traci wins the insight check!
The gangers pass a man down check, sticking around.  Running up, Traci wins the insight check and takes aim at the only ganger who can return fire, the man with a shotgun.  She gets two hits, knocking him down.  He passes 2d on his first check, 1d on his second and goes out of the fight.
Another ganger down
Jack runs up onto the porch of the house, aiming down at the last two gang member.  He spreads his shots across both (he wins the in sight check as he has them out ranged) and gets one hit on the second ganger, knocking him out of the fight.
Jack takes aim
Somehow the final ganger decides to stick it out.  Dawn wins initiative, and shoots her down.
The gang is gone.
Whew.  Jack jogs back to the generator and Traci moves to check the jeep.  Dawn is going to loot the dead and I'll wait for Jack and Traci help deal with the OOF gangers.
Time is running out...
I have less than ten minutes, so I start to move quickly.  (I have fewer pictures, they aren't interesting anyway.)  Jack finishes off the generator, getting the third success needed.  Doubles come up again, and a storm is about to hit.  Great, it's getting dark and raining!
Jack and Traci check the jeep
Jack rifled through the jeep, turning out bags and opening the storage boxes in the back.  "It seems pretty empty to me!"  He said, flustered at the lack of anything useful.
"Look at this."  Traci held up a key with a large plastic oblong tag.  "It says Twi Lite Motel.  Seems to be in Bloomer."  She read the key fob as she looked at it.  "Maybe that's where these guys are from?"
Jack moves the jeep to the garage
Jack and Traci check out the jeep and get a clue to the home base of the gang.  Jack takes the jeep to the garage and Traci moves to help Dawn with the gang members that are down.
Under five minutes left, the downed gangers are being gathered at the house.
Dawn drags the last KO'd ganger to the house and Jack and Traci start searching the interior of the house.  Dawn re-positions the car and heads into the house to work on the water.  Not much to see for pictures, but she manages to get the three required successes and the group has hot water to enjoy!  The last actions are barricading each door to DV2.  Time runs out before they get any more done, but at least nobody can just wander in!
Time's up!
Searching the house yielded some interesting items.  From searching, they get 3 units of food, a unit of fuel, a bow and a SAW.  Per the scenario, they also get 3 luxury items.  From the gangers, they pick up another assault rifle, a shotgun and three pistols, plus one set of body armor.  They also have three prisoners...

As the storm lashed the house with rain a rumble of thunder shook the walls.  Jack turned a hall light on and off a couple of times, smiling at the electricity.  "We'll have power for tonight at least!"  He said, triumphant.
"I'm looking forward to getting cleaned up."  Traci said, carrying an armload of clothes towards the washer and dryer they found in the utility room.  "I'd feel better without the guests."
Dawn sat watching the captured gangers, tied hand and foot to each other.  They were sitting on a couch in the living room of the house, each hurting, but recovering from their wounds.  "Hopefully they stay guests and we don't have to do anything...uncivilized."