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.


brutpaul said...

Don't be so hard on yourself. The tower looks very good!

Ambassador said...

I love the tower, too. My first thought was, "Ooh, I need to make one of those!"

Paladin said...

Looks good to me, I wish i was there playing as well.