Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A Couple of New Figs

Rather than catching up, I'm falling farther behind.  I just have a couple of things to put up here today.  First up are Rebel Minis Irish Hitmen.  For the zed campaign, they are just more zombie hunters, but they might come in handy if I branch out some. 

Although I haven't been able to get a game in lately (hopefully later this week), for my birthday, my wife got me this rather amusing tome:

Although not as hilarious as the author bills himself, it is a fun book to pick up and browse from time to time.

I also have to note that the wife actually recorded Zombieland for me one day just on the whim that I might want to watch it.  Had I known it had Woody Harrelson in it before hand I probably wouldn't have, but I have to admit it was a reasonably decent film, although it has zombies running (!) in it.  Heresy, I say!

Until next time!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Day 1c: Back to the Cabin

Wow!  It's been a full month since my last post.  Lots going on - family stuff and military mostly - and not enough time to post. 

Got the kids into bed and sat down to watch The Walking Dead last night.  The wife came down a few minutes later and sat down on the couch with me.  I said, "You might want to change the channel" and handed her the remote, knowing that she wouldn't appreciate zombie brains splattered across the screen.  Instead, she watched for a few minutes, then started asking me about the characters, what's going on, where are they, etc.  I have to admit, it was the first episode I've seen this season, so I wasn't entirely sure.  In the end, she watched one and a half episodes with me.  I did have to remind her a couple of time that I told her she might want to change the channel, but she kept watching!  This morning when she came in from walking the dog and saw I was doing a zombie game, she asked how it was going, then said, "Don't worry about it, we've all wanted to shoot Darryl at some time."  Had to laugh at my wife quoting from The Walking Dead!

Well, we're finally on to the third adventure here: the zombie hunters are figuring out what's going on (that is, I'm getting the hang of the rules) but they still have to make it back to the safety (?) of the cabin and their cars, and decide what to do from there.  At first, they thought since they were running from the fire tower, that the zombies would be behind them, but they found out in their last adventure that the zeds can be anywhere so  they are going to be more careful this time. 

The cabin and outhouse are actually from Eric Hotz's Whitewash City 25mm Old West collection.  I just shrunk them down to about 15mm/18mm size and printed them on regular paper.  They were just a tad small, but worked pretty well.

Initial Move:
Angel rolls a 3 so the team moves 6-1/2" in their first move.  The team moves on to the board with Bob watching the right, Angel and Ahmed watching their front, and Joe watching the left.  I roll a 2 for number of zombies, plus the ZAL gives me 3 to start.  Is zed activity slowing down already?  (Ha!  Never!)  Zombies are placed left front, right front and rear.  The team's surrounded.  Sort of. 

Turn 1:
Fortunately for them, the zeds roll a 6 on their initial activation and can't move.  The team rolls a 2 and will try to squeeze through between the zeds to their front.  Angel rolls a 3 again letting the team have a reasonable move, but probably not enough. 

Turn 2:
The activation rolls tie with 1s a piece leaving everyone in place for the turn.  The team checks their ammunition now knowing that nasty surprises could await them around any turn.

Turn 3:
The zeds rolls a 5, so can't move, but the team rolls a 6(!) and also can't move.  This is starting to look like Sitzkrieg all over again. 

Turn 4:
Again the activation roll is tied 1s.  No movement on either side. 

Turn 5: 
And this time it happens - the zeds activate with a 3, but the team is still immobile with a 6.  All right, zombies - bring it on!  Bob is charged by the zombie on the right.  The one on the left can't quite reach Joe, though.  (oops, directions reversed in the photo - Bob is on the left and Joe is on the right.  I wrote the descriptions from their perspective.)

 Bob fires while the zombie is still moving and rolls a 6, 2 x 3s and a 1, giving him two hits.  He rolls an OD and is safe from having to melee the nasty critter.  Joe only fires one barrel of his shotgun just in case, rolling a 6, a 4 and 2 x 1s and scores one hit.  He misses the OD, but the zed is knocked down. 

Only one zombie is attracted to the gunfire and appears to their left rear. 

Turn 6:
Again!  The zombies activate with a 3 while the team is rooted in place with a 6!  What is going on?  Have they lost their nerve?  This does not bode well for the future!

At least Angel thinks to check their back and sees the two zombies coming up from the rear.  They won't be surprised if they get stuck here another turn.  Joe's zombie regains his feet and charges, so he fires his second round.  No hits!  This is going to get interesting!  Angel fires past Ahmed and also gets no hits.  Bob has a pump shotgun so he chambers another shell and lets loose: 3 x 6s and a 1.  He gets his two hits but fails to OD the zombie, knocking it back and down again.  With one at their feet and two more closing in from behind, the team is having trouble with their zed control this time.  Fortunately, the six shots yield no new zombies this time around.

Turn 7:
This time the zeds roll a 6, rooting them in place, while the team just passes with a 5.  And they're not hanging around to see what happens!  But wouldn't you know it - Angel rolls a 5, slowing the team down to 5-1/2" for the turn.  They have their camp in sight and are looking forward to its security, such as it may be.  Everyone reloads on the go.

Turn 8:
Again there is no activity - both the zeds and the team fail their activation. 

Turn 9:
Everyone is active this time around, with the team moving first.  Angel rolls a 4, slowing the team to 6" - they are just keeping up with the zombies. 

Turn 10:
Both sides roll a 5 so the zombies fail to activate while the team just passes.  Angel only slows them down a 1/2" this time so they bolt into the cabin and lock the door.  Safe!  Or so they think. . .

At the last minute, Bob thinks to check both rooms of the cabin.  Yes, they are clear.  No zombies entered while they were out.  They still have three zombies to deal with and any that gunfire might attract but for the moment. . .

Turn 11:
Both sides activate, but the team is just watching and waiting as the zeds approach the cabin.  Unfortunately, there is no window in the back of the cabin so the team has to wait for the zeds to work their way around the sides and front.

Turn 12:
The zombies activate, but the team doesn't this time.  Doesn't really matter since the team is inside the cabin and not moving anyway.  One is at each window and the door so that everyone will know when a zombie appears. 

Bob is not surprised when a zombie appears at the window and naturally fires in reponse, rolling a 6, a 5 and 2 x 4s.  He's hit it twice and ODs it, but the gunfire attracts another zombie. 

Turn 13:
The team activates, but the zombies don't, so nothing happens.  The team wonders what they should do. 

Turn 14:
Everyone's active.  The team waits.  Two zombies appear at the window.  Bob lets loose another round rolling 2 x 5s, a 2 and a 1.  He gets two hits, but can only select one target due to the range.  The second zombie at the window has been following them all the way across the board.  There are still two zombies to deal with, but the gunfire attracts yet another one to their right front while one that was in the trailer climbs out and starts for the cabin!  Wow!  Ahmed just realized he had his bow in the trailer and was thinking of sprinting out to get it.  Good thing he didn't!

Turn 15:
Both sides activate again and the zombies move first.  Bob fires, getting one hit and ODing one of the zeds.  Joe and Ahmed change places so that Joe can use his shotgun against the zombie coming out of the trailer.  He gets two hits from one barrel, rolling 2 x 6s, a 4 and a 2, and ODs the zed in the yard.  No new zombies come out of the woods this turn. 

Turn 16:
Both sides activate and Bob leads the turn by firing at the last zombie in the window.  A 5, a 4, a 3 and a 1: he gets two hits and ODs it.  Both Joe and Ahmed are somewhat surprised when the last zombie rounds the trailer and heads for the door of the cabin.  Joe gets two hits with a 6, a 5, a 2 and a 1, and ODs it.  The gunfire attracts another zombie so it's not quite over yet.

Turn 17:
The team can't see the new zombie because the outhouse is between it and the house.  They decide discretion is the better part of valor, though, and decide to wait a bit before venturing outside again.  Everyone reloads, just in case.

Turn 18:
A tied 1 on the activiation roll results in no activity. 

Turn 19:
The zeds can't move while the team just passes its activation.  "Dang," Angel says.  "I have to go to the bathroom."

Turn 20:
The zeds are still inactive so Angel ventures out the cabin door.  Rolling a 6 she's only able to move 5" and doesn't make it to the outhouse.  She is completely surprised to spot the zed next to the outhouse.  She fires getting 2 x 6s a 3 and a 2.  Even with her surprise, she gets two hits and ODs the zombie. 

 The battle for the cabin is over and peace returns to the woods.  For now. 

Not as many zeds this time led to not as much happening and a more manageable game.  They probably needed it after the excitement of the last game, although Bob and Joe were both charged at one point.  The biggest problem was getting stuck in the open for so long - 6 turns without being able to move.  In the end they prevailed.  That was a long game with 20 turns, but it went relatively quickly - mainly because no one could do anything!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Alphabet Soup

You know.  FBI.  DEA.  ATF.  Pick an agency of your choice.  Here they are - Rebel Minis' Government Types.  I didn't paint any big yellow letters on the backs of their blue windbreakers, so they can be pretty much anyone - even the ZIA.  That's the Zombie Intelligence Agency, in case you didn't know. 

I just couldn't help but think Rosie O'Donnell when I saw the one second from the right in the second picture.  I could see the scene as if it was playing out in a movie:

"Sir, the zombies are gaining on us."

"Throw them Rosie.  That will keep them busy for a while.  They could feed off of her for days."

"Uh . . . Sir?  They only eat the brains."

"Oh, crap!  In that case, she won't slow them down at all!"

*     *     *     *     *

Hopefully I'll have the next game for you this coming week.  Things were a little crazy around here.  'Course, they're only going to get more crazy for a few days, but I should be able to squeeze in a game.

Monday, October 3, 2011

ATZ Day 1b: The Hunters Become the Hunted

After the last game, I went back and reread the rules and realized that I did a couple of things wrong in the first game.  Shotguns for one.  I misused them.  I should have been rolling more dice per shot.  There would have been more hits (maybe - depending on my bad dice rolling) and more kills earlier and it would have been a shorter game (maybe - depending on my bad dice rolling - and yes, I did repeat that on purpose). 

I was pleasantly surprised to find that I did a few things right that I wasn't sure about.  That's always good.  I have to go back through the rules again because this next game will be making use of more of the checks so I better make sure I know what I'm doing there.  I thought about making a sort of flow chart or at least a crib sheet that laid out the tests and when to take them.  Did any of you make something like that or did you just flounder back and forth in the rulebook like I do?

Today's game will see our heroes on the move trying to get back to the cabin.  For this game, they have to cross the board of woods as they head back from the fire tower.  Will they make it without becoming a tasty snack for the undead?  As noted above, the guys with shotguns should all do much better now that I have the shotgun rules straight, but Ahmed better sharpen up his shooting if he expects to survive long. . .  (He kind of got thrown into the mix since the only other figures I had with shotguns were Joe's twins.  We need someone to make ordinary citizens with bolt action rifles, etc., as well as SMGs and AKs.)

So. . . here we go for round two. . .

Initial Move:
Angel is Slow and rolls a 6, so the team loses 3" of movement as they opt to stay together rather than leave Angel to the zeds.  They move 5" onto the board.  Of course, nothing is easy - when I roll for zombies, I roll the max and the team faces seven zombies right from the get go.  They have three to the left front, two to the front and one each to the left and right rear.  They aren't aware of the ones to the rear, but should be able to ignore them anyway as they will (hopefully) be moving at least as fast. 

Turn 1:
Activation rolls 3 for the zeds and 1 for the team.  They move second, but all of them can move without a problem.  Bob and Ahmed both pass the In Sight test with two, Angel passes one and Joe passes none meaning that neither Angel nor Joe may fire this turn.

Bob fires, hitting two zombies and ODing (Obviously Dead) one and knocking the other one down.  Ahmed misses and probably shouldn't even bother shooting with his cap gun.  All he's going to do is make them angry.  The team then takes off to the right where there's no zombies.  This time, Angel rolls a 1 and the team can move 7".  No new zombies are generated due to the gunfire.

Turn 2:
Activation is double 3s so neither side can move or fire, but the zed that was knocked down recovers.

Turn 3:
Activation comes up with a 6 for the zeds so they can't move, and a 5 for the team - fortunately, Bob's a Rep 5 so the team can move.  Angel rolls a 1 again allowing the team to move its max, but she and Bob can't resist a parting shot at the zombies.  Angel misses everything, and Bob again gets an OD and a knock down.  No new zombies are generated due to gunfire.  The team's now about half-way across the table. 

Turn 4:
Activation is 3 for the team and 6 for the zeds - zombies go first but can't do anything.  The original ATZ rules (which I'm using) don't provide for PELs like the later ones do (I think) so I'm going to roll for zombies just like an initial placement because the team has now outstripped the ability of the original zeds to intercept them.  After the team moves, they see three zombies to their front and one to their left front.  Another pops up behind them and the remaining zombies will continue to pursue just in case I get a spate of bad die rolls.

Turn 5:
Activation is a 6 for the zeds and a 4 for the team.  The zeds are again paralyzed (this doesn't sound right - am I screwing it up?)  but the team can move normally.  They shift farther to their right in an attemp to avoid the zombies.  Angel rolls her third straight 1 for movement and the team can move 7" again.  On the In Sight test for the new zombies, only Joe passes 2 and can fire.  Joe fires both barrels of his double-barrel shotgun, but only gets one hit because the other targets are secondary targets and miss by one.  He does OD the one he hits, though.  Drat!  Joe brings on the hurt - three new zombies appear due to his fire.  One pops up in front of them, one to their rear and one to their left rear.  Thanks, Joe. . .

Turn 6:
Bad timing, Joe!  The team rolls a 6 for activation pinning them in place, while the zombies activate normally.  Fortunately, the team's last move to the right put a pretty good amount of distance between them and the zeds.  Let's hope we can get some good shooting this time too or someone's going to get munched! 

Bob is the only one to pass the In Sight test on the new zombies so he ODs the one to their front and Angel ODs one of the zombies to their left front while Joe reloads.  Ahmed sensibly holds his fire.  He can't do anything but attract more zeds.  Phew!  No new zombies are attracted by the gunfire.

Turn 7:
Activation comes up with the team moving first on a 4 and the zeds rolled a 3.  Bob ODs the other zombie to the left front and the team takes off.  This time Angel rolls a 5 slowing the team down to 5" this turn.  The team has only 2-1/2" to go to exit the board, but they have three zeds within a 6" move of them. 

Turn 8:
An activation roll of double 5s keeps everyone in place.  The suspense continues.

Turn 9:
OH, NO!  The zeds won the activation with a 4 over the team's 3.  Two zeds charge Bob and one charges Angel.  They both pass their Surprise check for being charged from the flank/rear and their Being Charged check with 2!  Bob ODs the first zed and has to melee with the second, and Angel ODs her zombie.  Bob passes the Melee check by 2 and the zed fails, but Bob fails the 'Pop the Weasel' roll and is stuck in melee!  Fortunately, no new zeds appear from the gunfire, but some of the zeds that were bypassed earlier are starting to catch up. 

Turn 10:
The team again fails to activate, rolling a 6 to the zeds' 1.  The closest zed charges Ahmed, and the other three are now within 4".  Two more zeds are still a little more than a foot away.  This time around, Bob passes 2 more than the zed (he has Brawler) and manages to 'Pop the Weasel'.  Ahmed and his zed both pass 1 leaving them in melee for another turn.  Angel knocks down the closest zombie and Joe ODs one of the farther ones, leaving just one zombie in range, besides Ahmed's friend.  The gunfire attracts two more zeds - one to the left rear and one to the front.  Will they ever be able to escape?

Turn 11:
The team finally won an activation with a 4 to the zeds' 5.  The zeds can't move.  Ahmed breaks off melee and the team beats feet, finally exiting the board safely and leaving 6 zeds behind. 

WOWZERS!  What a game that was!  Again, I thought it was going to be a cakewalk after the first couple of turns.  Just before exiting the board, everything started to go wrong and it was touch and go for a few turns there until the zeds lost an activation and the team was able to escape.  It appears that I played the rules right this time. 

Next time up, the crew reaches the cabin.  Until then.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Heah Com' da Fuzz!

I got Rebel Minis pack of police officers and it comes with 22 officers in five poses.  Since the THW rules that I use work well with small groups, I divided the officers up into four groups of five and a group of two.  I couldn't really see a time when I would need much more than four or five officers since I also have the SWAT pack and I could always mix a local PD with a county sheriff's office if I needed more officers for a particular setting.  I then painted them up, each group with its own uniform.  Here you can see the five poses that come in the pack and the five uniforms I used - tan and brown, light blue/dark blue, all black, tan and green, and all tan.

These guys will be making appearances from time to time in the campaign.  And the next campaign adventure will be coming at you real soon!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

ATZ Campaign Day 1: The Hunt Begins

(BTW, I renamed the previous post "ATZ Campaign Day 0" as this is the first actual day of the campaign.) 

(And also BTW, the exclamation point in this font looks like a lower case 'L'.  Or a '1'.  Or something other than an exclamation point.  At any rate, it's the font.  Not me.)

Bob is my Star.  Rep 5 Brawler armed with a shotgun.
Joe is a Rep 3 and a Medic.  He's armed with a double barrel shotgun.
Angel is a Rep 3 and Slow.  She has an over-under shotgun/rifle combo.
Ahmed is a Rep 3 and a Runt, armed with a pistol.

Turn 1:  "Dude, you nailed this one!  It was sheer genius using this abandoned fire tower to hunt from.  We can see for miles!" Ahmed gushed when they got set up on the platform and looked out over the forest. 

"Wait 'til you see this 12-point we saw last summer!  You'll freak!" Joe interjected.

"And look," Bob waved his friends to the edge of the platform, "the deer run goes right past the base of the tower."


The friends settled down to wait.  But they didn't have to wait long...

"Hey, I see something moving," Bob whispered to his friends.  "Look over there."  He pointed into the distance.

After a moment, Angel whispered back, "Yeah, I see it too."

"Look!  It's that buck!" Joe whispered excitedly and made sure his shotgun was ready for action.  "And it's coming this way!"

"Wait, what's going on?" Ahmed said out loud.  "They're starting to run.  What's the deal?"

Turn 2:  The four stared open mouthed as the deer broke into a run and charged right past the fire tower. 

"Hey, what's that?" Joe asked pointing in the direction the deer had just come from.  "Look, those guys chased the deer off.  And they're coming this way, too!"

"What do you guys think you're doing?"  Bob yelled.  There was no response as the loose line of people moved slowly towards them.  They looked like they were flushing for another hunting party.  This really ticked off Bob and Joe since that meant someone else would get their 12-pointer. 

The four watched as the flushers comtinued to come closer and closer.  "This is really weird," Angel observed.  "Something seriously doesn't feel right."

Turn 3:  "Yeah, you're right.  There's something strange about those dudes," Ahmed added.  "Look at the way they're walking.  And they're groaning.  It's like they're in a lot of pain or something."  He paused, then finished the thought, "But all of them?"

Turn 4:  Doubles - no move, no fire.

Turn 5:  "It can't be..." Bob said suddenly.  The others looked at him quizzically.  "Man, if those things are what I think they are, we're in trouble!"  Bob looked genuinely astonished.

"What are you talking about, Bob?"  Angel asked. 

"Zombies."  Bob answered, and opened fire.  The others followed suit, and knocked down a couple zeds, but didn't kill any.

2 more zombie appeared from the gunfire.

Turn 6:  Doubles - no move, no fire.

Turn 7:  Doubles - no move, no fire.

Turn 8:  Two (!) zeds started up the ladder of the fire tower.  Bob managed to shoot one off.  No new zombies appeared.

Turn 9:  Ahmed managed to kill a zed with his pistol.  Joe also got one.  No new zombies appeared.

Turn 10:  One zed reached the top of the ladder and Bob (brawler) knocked him off in melee.  Another (!) zombie started up the ladder.  Angel finally got one.  One new zombie appeared.

Turn 11:  The next zed reached the top of the ladder and Bob killed it with a "Pop Goes the Weasel" shot.  Two new zombies appeared from the gunfire.

Turn 12:  Ahmed killed one.  No new zombies appeared.

Turn 13:  Bob got one zed.  Another zombie appeared.

Turn 14:  Doubles - no move, no fire.

Turn 15:  Bob killed two more with a shotgun blast and Joe got one.  Another zed started up the ladder.  No new zeds appeared.

Turn 16:  Bob killed two zeds.  No new zeds appeared.

Turn 17:  Bob and Joe each got one.  The base of the tower was littered with dead zeds and they didn't see any more of the things moving around.  "Let's get out of here!  This is insane!"  "Where'd those things come from?"  "I hope there's no more of them!"  The friends climbed shakily down from the tower and headed back towards the cabin.  This hunting trip wasn't as much fun as they thought it would be.


Since this was my first ATZ game, I wanted something lightweight so I could concentrate on learning the flow of the game without a bunch of crazy stuff going on.  This was the perfect setting since zeds are rarest in rural settings and the ranger tower kept the crew safe enough.  The next one will be a little more challenging and will have the guys on the move.

I honestly thought this would be a cake-walk with the team in the tower and starting with only 6 zeds.  The low reps of the team ensured lots of misses.  I quickly decided that zombies at the base of the tower would qualify for the "Special Firing at a Zombie Rule" rule and would not be counted as facing the shooters.  This allowed me to roll against the shooter's Rep for Obviously Dead rather than the Impact of the weapon. 

I was also surprised at the number of climbers I rolled - something like 4 or 5.  Bob took on the task of entering melee with the ones that reached the top since he has the Brawler attribute, using his shotgun as a bludgeon and was able to "Pop the Weasel" on a number of them.  Fortunately, despite the number of shots fired (almost everyone fired every turn) not a lot of new zombies were generated and everyone's ammo held out without a problem. 

Stop laughing at my set up.  I know the trees are a little sparse for a forest setting.  I only have one box of trees and 5 of them didn't come with bases.  I didn't really want to cut the playing area down to 2' x 2' - it's only 3' x 3' as it is so I use what I have.

Where I got the stuff from:

The cars from the previous post are by Model Power HO scale made for model railroading, as are the deer.  The road was made from construction paper.  Yup, even the yellow line down the middle.  The ground clothes are felt cut to the appropriate size.  The trees are Woodland Scenics cheapo pre-made box-o-trees.  The ranger tower is scratchbuilt from balsa wood.  As if you couldn't tell.  Yeah, I really didn't feel like trying to model a ladder up the side of it.  Or all the bracing that a real one would have.  But it works for what it's worth.  Which is about 50 cents of balsa wood, superglue and spraypaint.

Monday, September 19, 2011

ATZ Campaign Day 0: Teaser


I'm not following the ATZ campaign system strictly.  Sometimes there will be more than one game in a "day".  Sometimes there might only be one in a "month".  I'm starting my hunters off with ordinary weapons that are easy to acquire (weapons that people would ordinarily own) and in an initial situation that isn't all that extraordinary.  I don't know how fast games will progress as I have a very limited budget for gaming.  I was originally going to use HO railroad buildings, but they are somewhat pricey so I'm going with scratchbuilt and paper buildings to populate my zed infested world.  As I introduce various things into the story, I'll add a link to where I found them so if you like them, you'll know where you can get them too.  I am going to use HO vehicles as civilian vehicles are really, really hard to find in 15mm and there is a wide enough variety available in HO that are decently priced.  Might add some more ground rules as we go, but for now, that will get us started.

The Teaser

"I've been waiting all year for this trip.  This is going to be excellent!"  Bob pumped his fist in the air.  "Let's hit the road!  YAHOO!"

He climbed into the Land Rover with Joe and pulled onto the street, speeding up slowly to give Ahmed and Angel in the VW time to catch up.  The friends all chatted happily as they headed out of Suburbia to Eagle Rock, their favorite hunting spot, and the little cabin that Bob's grandfather had built years before.  The trip would take a few hours and they were anxious to get there and set up camp before the opening of deer season the following day.

"I wonder if that monster buck still hangs around that abandoned ranger tower we found last year," Bob asked. 

"We aren't going to know until we get there, but I sure hope so," Joe responded.  "You wanna bet on who gets it?"

"Naw, we better wait until we get up there.  Angel and Ahmed are going to want part of that action, too." 

"You sure you packed everything we'll need?" Angel asked Ahmed.

"I think so."  Ahmed rubbed his bald head.  "We have food for a week and plenty of ammo for both the shotguns and the pistols.  I got slugs AND shot for the scatterguns.  If we get a deer, we'll have more than enough food for two weeks!  What more do we need?" 

"Ha!" Angel laughed.  "Well, we need clothes for the week.  I'm not putting up with a bunch of smelly men while I'm enjoying this hunt.  And I hope you brought the camping cook set and propane for the stove, silverware and plates.  I do intend to be civilized while we're roughing it."

Ahmed stretched back.  "Yup, no worries.  I got everything."  He settled down and dozed while Angel followed the Land Rover.  They were finally getting into the countryside.

Bob and Joe continued to discuss the prospects for a good sized deer and the time was passing quickly for them.  They both wanted the huge 12-pointer they had spotted that summer on a scouting trip to the cabin.  They had watched it for days and thought they knew its habits well enough that one of them should be able to get it this fall. 

The area was getting more wooded and hilly as they got farther from Suburbia and closer to Eagle Rock.  They were approaching one of the crossroads offering gas, lodging, food and supplies. 

"Hey, if you're ready to switch, get Bob's attention and pull in up at the gas station there," Ahmed mumbled sleepily rather than spoke.  "I could use a bite to eat and the restroom."

Angel tapped the horn a couple of times and Bob, surprisingly, duly pulled into the station.  When they stopped and got out to stretch their legs he said, "Not much farther now.  Another hour and we'll  be home sweet home for the week."

"Sounds good!  I can't wait!"

After a quick lunch and a stretch, they topped off their gas tanks, piled back into their cars and headed off on the last leg of the drive.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hands Up!

I got the Rebel Minis Hostages to do some police type games and for a couple of other ideas I had.  In the post-outbreak world, though, there are definitely some not-so-nice people.  Hostages might come in handy for a game or two so I'm putting them up here too.  Besides, I don't have anything else this week.  I've got my raw minis and paints packed to go home, and I'm packing my painted ones tonight (Tuesday).  I've got a roll of toilet paper, two rolls of Scotch tape and whatever old tv programs I can find on Hulu.

Unfortunately, they're a little dark as my desk lamp got packed for shipping today (Tuesday, in case you forgot).  But you get the idea.

Figured I'd get the post written up today and stored in memory since I'll be traveling all day on Friday and probably won't have time to do more than hit "PUBLISH POST" on Saturday.  BUT I should have an AAR for you next week!  At least I hope I will..

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Unfortunately, I don't have much new this week.  When I looked at the picture of my innocents last week, it didn't look like I had done much with their faces.  I admit I don't do a lot of shading with cloths, but I put a beige wash on their skin to highlight eyes, nose, mouth, fingers, etc.  It didn't really come through in the photos so I gave them another wash.  Much better now. 

I did get some rioters throwing rocks and bottles and waving baseball bats painted up.  I have a pretty basic selection of colors and I didn't want to get into mixing a bunch of different colors, so they tend to be in variations of the same colors over and over.  Most of them are wearing hoodies, either alone or under trenchcoats - at least that's how I interpreted the sculpts as the trenchcoat figs have something hanging out of the coat around their necks.   

The baseball bat guys could be zombie hunters also, and might appear as such in action.  I will probably just use the guys throwing rocks and bottles as looters in some of the action, or 'unarmed' civilians who don't respond well to my heroes. 

It's hard to tell from the picture, but the first guy has a John Deere hat on and the second guy has a Cubs hat.  Saw the colors and couldn't resist.

In a discussion on The Miniatures Page, one of the guys brought up the idea of using medieval crossbowmen and archers in sci fi gaming.  It suddenly clicked that I could use them as modern zed hunters as well.  I don't think the clothing was too far out there to not be used like that.  I'll have to look at them again when I get home and see if I can use them as is or do a simple conversion to make them look more modern.  I might have just acquired a couple more zombie hunters!  If I'm stuck in CA, I will have to wait a while for them as I don't think my wife will be willing to brave my mountain of lead in the basement to dig out the couple of leftovers that I have from my Crusader/Norman army. 

Next up, hostages.  I'm in the midst of packing to go home, but I hope to squeeze in enough time to get them done before I go.  I don't know if I'll get a post in next week or not, so we'll see.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Please Welcome Global Security, Inc.

Executive protection and overthrowing small countries are our specialties, but we can handle any job you have for us.  No job is too big or too small.   Our professional soldiers . . . er . . . security specialists are trained and experienced in a wide variety of arms and combat situations.  If we can't do it, those weenies at Blackwater sure as heck can't, so don't even ask them! 

Here are a couple of examples of our executive protection/corporate field security teams.  Depending on the circumstances, we offer two man and four man teams with supervisors, and by grouping teams, we can create any size force you want to meet your needs.  Even with a zed outbreak in the works there are still Very Important People in the world who deserve better protection than the little people should expect. 

Two man team with supervisor

Four man team

I don't foresee a lot of use for these guys in the outbreak, but I'm sure they'll come in handy occasionally.  I have a couple more of them - might paint them up as more of a merc force.

Then we have the survivors.  Innocents.  Lunchmeat.  Whatever you want to call unarmed civilians, we need some of them too.  You never know when you will have to rescue a damsel in distress.  Or accept a bribe to save Congressman McTwit from his former-constituents-cum-zombies.  Heck, let them have him.  What good's money in the post-outbreak world anyway?  Save the damsel instead.

Good news.  I ordered the terrain to get going on my first zombie games.  Trees.  Can you believe it?  I've been miniature gaming for 10 years and don't have any trees.  Always played at a friend's house and used his trees.  Always bought minis instead of trees.  Now I'll have my own and be able to game at my place, too.  I'll be (temporarily) moving back to PA around the same time I'll be getting the trees so, although we're still looking at 2+ weeks, a game IS in the works.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Why Zombies?

Some friends have asked, 'Why zombies?'  OK, not in so many words, but that was kind of their meaning.  I've seen some of the classic zombie films like Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead and Day of the Dead and enjoyed them, so it wasn't like I was getting into something I wouldn't enjoy.  To be honest, I'm not sure I've been bitten by the 'bug' either.  I sort of fell into zombie gaming.  I had a little free time on weekends and wanted to do some gaming, but I haven't been able to hook up with gamers here in town because of schedules and timing.  I wanted something simple, different, that I could game solo, and that I didn't need a zillion minis for since I didn't have time to paint that much.  I've been in school for the last 15 months 3000 miles from home, and my friends, family and minis are still back in PA and IL while I'm here in CA. 

I was actually looking at sci fi skirmish gaming with GZG figures and while poking around on the internet for rules, I checked out Chain Reaction 3.0, the free rules on Two Hour Wargames' website.  I liked the mechanisms in it and the fact that it could be played solo, and shortly after that someone on The Miniatures Page just happened to offer ATZ1 for sale at half price.  I jumped at it, reasoning that since I liked the game system and I knew you could play with just a handful of minis in addition to a bunch of zombies.  While researching figures for ATZ, I ended up at the Rebel Minis website and I haven't been the same since!  They have almost everything I needed.  In fact, one more order and I'll have everything I need for zombie gaming and more, since the figures have a lot of modern crossover potential like hostage situations, police reaction to bank robberies, active shooters, riots, etc..  Unfortunately, that last order will have to wait as I now need to get the terrain for the zombie games. 

In the meantime, I'll keep painting what I have.  For example, here's part of my Bioterror Reaction Team:

They are a government paramilitary organization that is so secret no one knows anything about them.  They follow their mandate to the 'T', but I can't divulge what it encompasses.  However, I can say that it does not include hunting down and killing zombies.  They leave that to the police, military and civilians to accomplish.  Congress keeps funding them because they each figure someone else knows who they are and what they do, and the name sounds pretty darn impressive when embedded in funding legislation.  "Why, I voted to continue funding the Bioterror Reaction Team," Congressman McTwit recently stated while defending his position to his constituents.  See - it does sound good, doesn't it?  We do know that the team only answers to one person.  Who that is, though, no one knows either.

And then there's the team of intrepid journalists in army surplus flak vests to keep them safe from all sorts of potential hazards: 

Everyone needs journalists to get the story, get in the way, be rescued or get munched by zombies.  My own opinion is that most journalists should be munched by zombies, but I'm sure somewhere along the way, my zombie hunters will end up rescuing this bunch.  The journalists are from QRF Models LTD. 

And here's my last two zombie hunters:

I particularly like the way the camo pants on the girl on the left turned out.  So there you have it.  Until next time.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

SWAT Team and the Zombie Hunters Up Close and Personal

The SWAT team was actually the first set of Rebel Minis that I painted - they paint up fast since they're just black with a grey drybrush, flesh with a brown wash and hair in various shades with a highlight.  (I'm still working on getting the photography down as you can see.)

Some friends wanted to see close-ups of the zombie hunters so I reshot them with the macro setting.  I haven't named all of them, but some of them bear a resemblance to, or in other ways remind me of, real people.  So let me introduce you to my zombie hunters:

Tina, Jessy and Ahmed

The first one is Tina.  Tina is a sheriff's deputy in Louisiana with a military background.  I know she knows how to take care of herself and her friends.  Next we have Jessy.  Jessy is a great friend, former spec ops and a professional body builder who's been in Mr. Universe competitions.  He is also a martial artist extraordinaire.  Visiting the school I trained at, he accidentally broke my collar bone (yes, really).  He felt really bad about that, but was ecstatic when I was in his town on business and called him up to train with him.  Next we have Ahmed.  He resembles one of my teachers, who is from the Sudan.  So he had to be Ahmed.  Two notable quotes: "So this is '50 Cents' [sic].  I wondered who this '50 Cents' [sic] person was.  You call this music?" and "What do they export from Yemen?  Terrorists."   You have to imagine these being said with the appropriate accent. 

Bob, Rich and Emily

This is Bob.  Bob was an excellent ASL player, but he disappeared a long time ago and no one has seen or heard from him since, at least that I know of.  He used to have trouble traveling to Canada because one time when he flew up there he forgot he had a bag of weed in his pocket.  And they found it.  Then we have Rich.  Rich is also former spec ops who basically made military schools a way of life.  He was the most overtrained, overqualified person I've ever known in the civilian or military world.  Finally, we have Emily.  I dated Emily for a while years ago.  The real Emily wasn't as interesting or exciting as this Emily is.  Just made me think of her for some reason.

Hillbilly rednecks or street punks?

In some ways I want to call these three Billy Joe, Bobby Joe and Joe Joe.  Or Jim Bob, Joe Bob and Bob Bob (to distinguish him from Bob, of course).  But somehow I just don't see them as the hillbilly, redneck or backwoods types.  They seem more like just plain old street punks to me.  I also suspect that in action they'd be more like Moe, Larry and Curly if allowed to operate together.  Or maybe Huey, Dewey and Louie.

Meet the rest of the girls.

The girls are some of my favorites, but I don't have names for them.  I guess I'll have to work on that.  The first one might be Maggie.  Not sure.  I'll have to think about that.  I think the second from the left was supposed to be a native American guy with the loincloth, but I figured I'd just paint the figure up like a girl and I'd have a female with a shotgun.

My zombie racing stable for Dead Heat.

These are my favorite zombies.  They turned out just the way I wanted them.  If I only had one more, I could run a complete game of Dead Heat, the zombie racing game from Two Hour Wargames.  I'll have to pick one of the others just to fill in.

I hope to have the scenery I need to do my first zombie game in a couple of weeks, but timing will be tight as I will be moving in the middle of September so it may get put off for a few days.  I'd also like to use the Comic Life software to build my AARs.  I like the way they look and feel of them for this type of gaming.  So there's another few days purchasing and figuring out the package.

Before I forget, if any readers have a dedicated zombie blog, they'd like me to add to my blog list, drop me a comment.