Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Gimme Shelter (Part 1)

"That real estate sign said up here."  Mark said as he guided the SUV down the highway.  "We've had good luck with places that were for sale before...all this happened.  Hopefully this is a place we can rest."
"I'm just glad to be out of that hell hole you found me in.  Another day and I was dead for sure."  Issac said.  "Seriously, what was up with those people?"
"They had to be messed up before this happened."  Dawn added.  "No way could they have gotten that bad in just the past month, right?"  Dawn looked at Allen, who was absently rubbing his shoulder and staring at the countryside going past.
"A lot can happen in a few weeks."  Allen said quietly.  "The whole world can end."
Silence followed his pronouncement.  The SUV rolled through the countryside, past empty farms and fields, finally coming over a rise on the outskirts of a town.  Smoke still hung in the air, and large portions of the town were little more than smoldering ruins.
"Looks like we missed a bad time."  Mark said, slowing down to look over the area.  "I can see the factory that is for sale.  It seems in decent shape, there is even a low wall around the property.  Looks like there could be a storm brewing."  Dark clouds hung in the sky overhead.
"It's not getting any closer by us sitting here and I'd rather be inside if it's going to rain.  Let's go."  Issac said, and Mark moved the SUV forward.

The group added Issac, freed from the basement of the 'family' in the previous encounter.
Issac is a repainted Heroclix of Nomad (#016 from Captain America) all I did was give him a wash, and repaint his vest as a leather jacket, and gave him blue jeans.  As figures go, he is pretty decent for a survivor as is.  I may get another one and modify it with a backpack, or a weapon swap.

The group is trying to find a place to rest, after the ambush by the "family" in the previous scenario.  Mark and Allen are wearing body armor (looted from the family) Mark has the grenade that Horace had found, and Issac picked up a shotgun.  Otherwise, the group is still equipped as they have been for some time.  Due to their injuries, Allen is at Rep 2, and Dawn is Rep 3 for this scenario.

It is afternoon of day 24, and the group is approaching a suburban area, the encounter rating is 3, 3 PEFs and there are 15 starting zombies.  The goal of the scenario is to find a building, empty it out, or find it empty (no zombies/hostiles) and spend at least a turn inside with no zombies within 6" of the building.  The initial plan is for the large "abandoned" building (Stoelzel's Structures Derelict Commercial Building) but any intact (not burned out) building can meet the criteria for success.
Approaching the town
Ashes drifted on the breeze as Mark guided the SUV down side streets.  "That big wreck off the main drag looks best avoided.  Besides, these roads seem to be taking us right there."
"I have started seeing a few of the zeds out there."  Issac said, gripping his shotgun, and removing his seat belt.  "I will cover the side as we drive, and when we get there, I'll stay on this side."
"Be careful Issac, you never know what we'll run into."  Dawn said.  "If we all stick together, we should be good."
Mark drove into the town, passing empty cars and damaged buildings.  "Anyone want a burrito?"  Mark joked as they drove past a Taco Bell.  "It's been a while since I had a taco..."
"We may want to check that later.  There's bound to be food there still."  Dawn said.
Moving into the town
The SUV moved into the town, one PEF moved closer, the others did not move.  After the group moved, zombies charged the SUV.
Zombies charge!
Silly zombies, crushed under the SUV
The next turn, I roll doubles and get a random event.
I randomize the buildings and find out that the Taco Bell catches fire!  Seems the hot sauce is a little too hot.  Another PEF moves forward, and another 8 zombies appear.
Gives Fire Sauce a new meaning
As the SUV moves forward, they spot the first PEF, as well as a horde of zombies in the road.
The road is blocked
The PEF turns out to be nothing, but the zombies in the road make a very fine target...
Not a pedestrian crossing!
Another PEF revealed
Driving forward, the group revealed another PEF, which also turned out to be nothing.  I'm not complaining, I don't need more zombies to deal with.  Vehicles make an effective anti-zombie machine, which I suppose is a bit of an understatement.

The zombies go next, and charge the vehicle.  Luckily the SUV is moving, and charging a moving vehicle is not good for anyone's health.
Zombies attack the SUV
Dawn and Issac shoot as well
Zombies crashed into the SUV.  Mark swerved the SUV around, and the dull thudding of the corpses being crushed under the wheels echoed through the cabin.  Issac fired his pistol out the window, dropping one zombie before it could reach the SUV.  "Hell yes!  Take that!"
Dawn let off a burst from her SMG.  A zombie staggered and fell as a bullet shattered its skull.  "Maybe we should find a place further away from the town!"
"Keep going!  We're almost there!"  Issac yelled.
Time to turn the corner
Turning the corner, I lined up the zombies between the group and the gate.  Smacking the zombies with the SUV seems like the safest plan.
Zombie smackin' machine!
Mark gunned the SUV around the corner.  He lined up several zombies between them and the gates to the factory.  The first zombie crunched apart, parts scattering in the street as the SUV destroyed it.
"Get 'em!" Issac yelled and cheered.

Zombie go squish
Nearly 5000 pounds of steel hurtled down the road, crushing bodies as it slammed into them.  Mark was guiding the SUV down the street aiming for the zombies staggering towards the sound of the engine.  Blood and gore spattered the once deep blue paint job, leaving ugly rust colored stains.
"Maybe this is the way to clear these things out!"  Mark yelled as he hit the last zombie.
One more to go
As the last zombie disappeared under the front wheel, Mark felt the steering wheel jerk in his hands, and the SUV wouldn't turn.  Panic started to grab Mark, and he hit the brakes, only to find the SUV didn't slow at all.  
"Hang on everyone!"  was all he could yell as the SUV crashed into the gate and wall.  Airbags slammed into Mark, and he felt the seat belt wrench him back into his seat.
So I am cruising along, bash 5 vs bash 1 as the SUV piles into the zombies.  Then I roll 0 successes and the zombie manages 1.  Wow, that sucks.  The SUV finishes its move, flips and is destroyed.  Everyone on board takes a hit against a ranged impact 3 attack.  Mark passes 2d, and is protected, so can carry on.  Dawn passes 1d, and is Out of the fight.  Allen also passes 2d, and being protected, can carry on.  Issac, oh poor Issac, is killed outright by the impact.  He should have worn his seat belt.
Mark attacks the zombies
"Allen, get Dawn out of here!  I'll hold off the deadheads!"  Mark levered himself out the driver's door, grabbing his bat before jumping down to the street.
Allen unbuckled, and moved to the front, kicking out the shattered remains of the windshield.  Grabbing Dawn's unconscious form, he dragged her from the SUV, past Issac's still form.  "Damn, sorry dude."  Allen shook his head as he moved towards the nearby buildings.
Allen moves away from the wreck
Mark killed the zombie that had caused the wreck.  He moved onto the next, Allen moved further away, towards the door to the warehouse.  He may only be rep 2, but if they can get to a "safe" building, at least they can escape.
Mark fights in the street
Allen heads for the warehouse
Mark was fighting in the street, and zombies began to gather at the burning Taco Bell.  He couldn't see Allen or Dawn, and could only hope they made it to safety.
Zombie horde gathers at the burning Taco Bell
First he knocks one down
Then attacks another
My plan was pretty simple, kill the zombies in the streets, and fight the remaining horde as it crosses the hedge between the road and the parking lot.  This should give Mark a good chance to keep the zombies from overwhelming him.
Mark killed one zombie, and turned on the next closest.  Sweat stung his eyes, and he was worried about how many were moving towards him.  As he took a swing at the zombie, his focus moved to another zombie shambling down the street towards him.  Not paying attention, he missed the zombie, which slammed him to the pavement.  Gnashing teeth and grasping hands closed on Mark as he fought desperately from the ground...

Mark looses his melee by 1, and is knocked down.  He passes 2d for the check, and (thank you!) can carry on as he has body armor.  This is especially important, as the zombies move next, and another charges Mark as he is on the ground.
Zombies go for a Mark snack
Mark fell to the rough pavement, losing his bat from his grip.  The zombie was on him almost immediately, dead hands grabbing and trying to wrench his arms out of the way of the snapping jaws.  Mark barely held the struggling corpse off of him, he could see another zombie grasping at his legs.
"This is it."  He thought.  "Not without a fight though."  Mark scissored his legs,twisting with the zombie over him.  Reversing positions with zombie bought Mark enough time to grab his bat, and start smashing the head of the first zombie, even as the next grabbed at Mark.  The two struggled with the bat between them, Mark kneeling on the ground as the zombie slowly forced him down...
Mark fights for his life
So Mark manages to WIN one combat, and kills the zombie that had knocked him down.  He manages to get evenly matched with the other zombie.  Really, better than I could reasonably expect.

Meanwhile, Allen and Dawn look for a safe haven.
Allen leaves Dawn by the corner
An empty warehouse
Allen propped Dawn by the building corner.  "I'll check the warehouse, let's hope its empty."  Her limp form crumpled along the ground as Allen moved to the nearby door.  He could hear Mark yelling and fighting, keeping the zombies attention away from them.  Reaching the door, he pulled it open and entered the dimly lit warehouse.
"Empty."  Allen said as he looked over the cracked concrete floor and a few barrels.  "This will work."

Allen found and empty building.  At least he and Dawn have a chance to survive if Mark gets eaten...

The next turn starts with doubles.  It seems Mark isn't out of trouble yet!
Was Mark bitten?
Mark takes the "Harry are you okay?" test, being the only character to have contact with zombies so far in this scenario.  Mark rolls a 6, and shrugs off the effect.  Hopefully this is a sign of good things to come...
Mark gets up and attacks!

Playing chicken with the zombies
Mark only knocked down the first zombie.  There are a bunch of zeds coming from the Taco Bell, so I decide to move off.  Having just stood up, Mark can't move very far, and he fails the fast move test.  I really only have one way to go, which looks like trouble, as its along the road, with a solid wall on one side and a hedge on the other.  I figure Mark is enough more athletic than the zombies - he should be able to get away.
Here they come!
Mark clobbers the first zombie that approaches, killing it easily.  Allen drags Dawn into the warehouse and moves some barrels around to 'hide' her.  I am considering moving Allen out to help Mark, but first I want to make sure someone will survive...
Allen makes sure Dawn is safe
Another roll of doubles starts the next turn, and a random event is drawn:
A bolt from the blue
A random location is struck by lightning.  It hits the large tower across from the deserted factory.  Luckily, it plays no part in the battle.  Unfortunately, the zombies win initiative, all Mark can do is watch the horde come at him.  The zombies charge Mark and quickly surround him.
Alone against the horde
Mark stood his ground as the zombies crashed around him.  He could feel the press moving him slowly backwards, trying to knock him off his feet.  Mark knew if he fell, he would die.  Moving with the press, Mark dodged several blows, and managed to keep upright.  Then as soon as he could, Mark started lashing out with his bat, smashing heads and blocking grasping arms...

Being completely surrounded, and with several zombies with enough movement to carry past Mark, I ruled he could be swarmed over and dragged down.  I rolled 1d for each zombie in melee and each that could actually reach Mark.  This gave the zombies 9d6, Mark rolled his Rep, or 5d6.  The zombies scored 4 successes, and Mark scored all 5.  Bam!  He stays on his feet, and we move to hand to hand.

Mark must have been energized by surviving the surge.  He kills 3 zombies and knocks 3 others down.  I swear Mark moved into Hero mode!  It was his turn to act...
Stop the zombie horde
Mark kept moving, swing the bat in wide arcs, smashing skulls and breaking arms all about him.  As the zombies crash down, he moved to finish them off, then launched at the next standing group.  "Gotta fight my way out!"  Mark thought desperately.
Finishing off the prone zombies

Charging the next zombies

Knocking the dead down
Mark finishes off the downed zombies, and then charges the remaining zombies.  He manages to knock three down.  It seems he has his mojo back.  The next turn starts with another random event (another set of doubles rolled!)  This time, its something good.
Finally something good
Dawn gets a chance to recover, and passes 2d.  She recovers and joins Allen in the warehouse.
Dawn gets back up, ready to go!
Coughing, Dawn sat up suddenly.  "What the hell?  Where am I?"  She looked around and spotted a surprised Allen.
"We crashed.  Mark is still out there, but I dragged you in here to be safe."  Allen said as he checked the door.  "I figured you would be out for a while yet."
"Mark is out there alone?"  Dawn said, getting up and checking her SMG.  "Let's get out there and help him!"

I'll continue this in part two...


  1. Way to go Mark! He's just a killing machine. Good to see dawn recover at the end. As for poor Isaac - he should have worn his seat belt!
    I hope we don't have to wait too long for part 2.

    1. Part 2 will be out shortly - I promise!

      The dice started a bit cold, but when they got hot for Mark, he was on FIRE! It was pretty fun, but I worry about overconfidence...

  2. Poor Isaac - cluck-clink and all that. Very cool. Cheers for sharing!

    1. That's right - even during the zombie apocalypse, remember to buckle up!

  3. Wow, what an action packed game. So far it seems it has everything that could possible happen, happen and there's still more to come !

    1. This is yet another time the game took on a life of its own. I wanted to do it in a single batrep, but it just didn't feel right. I couldn't believe the number of random events that occurred after no doubles the previous outing!

  4. Great episode once again dude.
    RIP Isaac (he was one unlucky SOB). Mark kicked ass and took names.
    Can't wait for the next part.

    1. I was rather disappointed in Issac. I had a fig ready to go for him, and he never got out of the truck (well, alive anyway.)

  5. Somehow I felt the car crashing into zombie met the "last zombie and then I stop" syndrom. Always everything fine until the last moment. I am sad for Isaac. Surviving the zombie apocalypse and cannibals to finally die in a car crash. Things look very edgy. It only needs one bad roll. fingers crossed they make it.

    1. My heart dropped when I realized the whole group might die in a car crash. Luckily the dice recovered, but there is still quite a bit to go before its done.

  6. Looking forward to part 2. Marks new nickname should be Hercules after all that effort he's just expended!

    1. Part 2 will be along shortly, I promise!

      Mark's dice started getting hot at just the right time. Sometimes that can make all the difference.