Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Helping Hand - Part 2

Dawn shook her head, clearing the cobwebs and restoring her vision.  Looking just out the front of the windshield, she could see Mary barely conscious , kneeling in the street ahead.  Zombies were shambling towards her, sensing an easy meal.  "Get up!  They're almost on you!"  Dawn yelled as the first zombie reached out towards Mary.

Luckily, the next turn starts with the survivors going first, then the zombies and finally the agents activate.  The soldiers don't activate this turn (which is very unfortunate for them...)
Mary faces two zombies as others close on agent Jenkins
Private Olsen looked back at the ruined fire station they had left.  Desperately he cleared his assault rifle, trying to slam a new magazine in place before the gray, undead things could get to him.  Hands shaking, he dropped his magazine to the ground, seeing a shadow cross it as the closest zombie reached out for him.  "Sarge!  They're right here!"  Panic filled his voice.  "We're gonna die!"
"Shut up and fight you pussy!"  Sergeant Myers yelled back.  "You have a knife, use it!"

Zombies swarm the infantry
Agent Hammer watched the soldiers getting swarmed as a lone zombie shambled towards him.  With the barest of pauses, Hammer raised his pistol and shot the zombie in the face as it reached him.  Something in his instincts told him to be on guard, and a zombie stumbled from the ruins behind him.  Hammer spun around, locked in hand to hand combat for his life!
A zombie attacks from behind
The zombies really made a go of it this turn.  Two attack Mary, who manages to knock one down and scores even with the second.  Hammer shoots and kills one zombie, and spins around and kills the second (not very surprisingly).
The street is a bit less dangerous...
Surrounded and down a man, the infantry don't fare very well...Only one soldier passes the charge test and gets a shot off.  The others fall in melee very quickly.
Soldiers try to make a stand...
After the other had fallen, the final soldier still passes the man down test with 2d.  He's going to stick around until the bitter end...
More undead roam the street
With some rather poor rolling, the agents get a free turn - they are the only side to activate.  Not even the zombies activate.

Agent Hammer moves up and Jenkins picks up Trish and runs forward.
Hammer charges for some hack and slash
Jenkins shoots and scoots
Starting the next turn, the survivors move first, the zombies second, the soldier third and the agents will activate last.

Dawn watched the agents dragging Trish's limp form away.  She knew they would take her back to the doctor or lab or whatever hell she had manged to get away from.  "Not without a fight!"  Dawn said, checking her pistol and stepping out of the Hummer.  "Let her go!"  Dawn shouted in the street.
Agent Hammer turned, shaking off his sword.  He raised his pistol to meet Dawn.  "We have our orders.  Get your people and leave.  I won't let anyone take our subject."  Hammer gestured with his sword "There are many more of these thing coming.  The longer you wait, the harder it will be to get away."
Dawn paused, looking around the street.  "We don't leave anyone behind."
"Neither do we."  Hammer said.
Gunfire echoed in the street...
Dawn faces Hammer in the street
Dawn gets out of the Hummer and triggers an in sight check.  This is just Hammer and her, as Jenkins is out of sight, and Mary is in melee.  I really agonized over this course of action - Trish is a ganger, and very likely not a good fit for the team, there are zombies facing Mary, more in the area and the Hummer isn't running yet.  However, the team wouldn't just hand someone over to a 'mad' scientist.  She is going to try and get Trish back.  Time to walk the walk.
Dawn wins the in sight check
Dawn fires, hits once and gets a kill.  Hammer has the advantage 'Hard as Nails' and ignores the hit.  He fires back, getting two hits on Dawn.  One is a kill, which she ignores (hard as nails again!) and passes 2d for the knockdown check, and carries on as she is protected.
Is it high noon?
After the in sights, Dawn stands up and the two shoot simultaneously.  This is one of those rules I don't entirely understand from ATZ, everyone shoots again simultaneously after the in sights, it makes it hard to see why anyone moves into contact.  Both Dawn and Hammer shoot again, Hammer gets one hit, and Dawn passes her knockdown test with 2d, and carries on.  Dawn gets two hits, and Hammer passes 2d and 1d for his knock down test, and goes OOF.
Dawn wins the duel
Mary kills the zombies she is facing, easily finishing off the one she had knocked down last turn.  The zombies swarm forward towards the living...
One last soldier makes his stand
Zombies everywhere!
Zombies move towards Mary
With all the human sides pretty much ignoring the undead, the zombies have become a pretty good size swarm.  The last soldier falls under the wave, going down fighting, but still killed.  Mary takes care of the zombie she is facing, but is still looking at four more coming at her... 
Mary takes a zed down
The last agent (who passed a man down check when Hammer went OOF) kills the zombie who attacked him.  It's then his activation.
Jenkins makes a hole
Jenkins could hear the chopper approaching.  His whole team was down, but he had the package.  "Time to be a hero."  He mumbled, placing a pistol shot square between an undead office workers eyes.  Picking up the unconscious Trish, Jenkins ran in a clumsy manner around the corner of the parking garage.  He knew the landing zone was on the top of the structure.
"Eagle this is primary.  Package en route to LZ."  Jenkins said into his radio.
"Primary, Eagle has visual.  Making final approach."  Static filled the reply, but it came through clear enough.  "Be advised there is a large zed mass moving on your position from the south.  Out."
"Just another distraction."  Jenkins thought as he shifted his burden and continued to run.
Jenkins runs past the zeds!
For the next turn, it's the survivors, then the zombies and finally the agent activate.

Dawn is torn, I could have her try and run down the agent, she has a good chance to at least get an in sight roll off at the corner, or she can make sure Mary and the rest of the group escape.  She still needs to start the Hummer, and zombies are closing in on the two remaining survivors.  It's a hard call to make, but Dawn has to let the agent go...for now.
Dawn and Mary face 4 zeds
Dawn shoots, dropping 2 zombies
Dawn can't quite get the truck started
Dawn kills 2 zombies and makes one attempt to start the Hummer.  It fails.  Mary tries to shoot the last two zombies in the street, and manages to get them both.  She runs back to the Hummer, joining Dawn.
Time to get outta here!
Time for the zombies to act.  They basically split into three groups.  One group moves down the street towards the Hummer, another chases the agent, and a final group decides to eat the soldiers.  Unpleasant to say the least.
Zombie Feast!
Start the truck...
Jenkins is just out of reach
The zombies can't quite get to Jenkins and the Hummer is still well out of reach.  The only real action is the start of a feast, which I roll a 5 for duration.  That group is going to be out of action for awhile...

The next turn, the zombies don't activate, the survivors go first and the agent second.
Dawn starts the Hummer...
...and gets moving!
Dawn tried to start the Hummer, the engine growled and died.  Trying again the engine sputtered and died.  "Come on, start!"  Dawn yelled as she punched the steering wheel.
"They're getting closer!"  Mary yelled.  "We need to move!"  Mary changed magazines in one of her pistols.
Dawn cranked the engine again and with a hard shudder, the engine caught.  With a yell of triumph Dawn shifted into gear and roared down the road.  A dull rhythmic thud sound filled the air as the Hummer started to roll.
"Is that the engine?"  Mary asked worriedly.
Dawn glanced out her window to the top of the parking ramp.  "Nope.  The agents have a chopper."
A blue helicopter descended to the top of the parking ramp as Agent Jenkins carried Trish to the landing area.  The zombies on the street were falling well behind and he allowed himself a moment of satisfaction as he was getting to the top.  The cost was high, but they were successful.
Jenkins is just about to the chopper
With Dawn driving the Hummer and Jenkins a move away from the helicopter, that pretty much ends the scenario.  The next turn the survivors don't act, the zombies act first and the agent acts last.  As the Hummer is moving, they move first and leave the table, although Dawn does pass a 2d check to swerve around the agents Hummer blocking the road.

The mission is a failure, and I do a quick keep it together check.  Dawn passes 1d (only rolling 1d!), both Blake and Larry pass 1d, and Mary passes 2d.  Everyone is ready to leave... oh $*&^%!

Mary gestured towards a side road as Dawn rolled down the road.  "I am part of a larger camp, we're just a few blocks away."  She glanced at Larry and Blake who were still shaken from the ambush.  "You can rest and maybe we can figure out a way to get your friend back."
"That sounds too good to be true."  Dawn said, casting a sideways glace at Mary.  "Maybe we should just keep moving..."
"We need to recover.  Let's check it out."  Larry said, grunting in pain from his gunshot wound.  "We can help them, they can help us."
Dawn considered for a moment, "Okay how do we get there?"

There is a survivor enclave that Mary and Nathan were ranging from nearby.  The group will head there and I will deal with the fallout of the group splitting up.


  1. Quite a sad ending to a rather brutal fire-fight.
    The ATZ rules are quite confusing (and it's why I'm continually re-writing my version), but overall they work.

    1. Sometimes you get the bear...

      Things could have been worse, it wasn't a total wipe, and Dawn will continue. It's just more difficult to keep going now.

      I agree, there are some confusing points, but in the end, the shooting after the face off in a way makes sense. If nothing else, it keeps the game moving, once you make contact, you want to stay there.

      Overall, I am quite happy with the chain reaction system, it works pretty well. Like all games, it has some rough parts.

  2. Wow! Not the ending I was hoping for. Hey, surviving's a tough business and that was a real nasty situation. The soldiers only providing a brief distraction didn't help much until they fed the zombies for several turns.
    So, the bad guys got away with their prize and the group fell apart. Let's hope the nearby enclave gives them chance to rest and reconsider the options.
    Another great and exciting episode, sometimes you just can't win them all.

    1. Yeah, that was a tough one. Survival is sometimes the best reward you can hope for.

      Dawn isn't done yet. She's going to continue her trip back home, we'll see what happens with the survivor enclave, I had hoped they would meet under different circumstances.

  3. Aww that sucks! Nevermind fella I wonder where this story will go next!

    1. Yeah, not what I was hoping for, but it's not all over yet!