Monday 23 April 2012

No Mans Land (WW! Zombie Game)

German Frontline Trench
The situation was that there had been lots of screaming an shouting and gun fire the night before last in the German trench. The following day it had gone quiet. Some movement and abstract sounds had been hear but the Germans were not returning fire to the British Trench. In the Afternoon the Germans bombarded the trench with their own artillery. A trench raid was organised for that night to find out what was going on and if the troops in that section of the line had rebelled against the Germans.
The Scenario had three objectives that needed to be recovered and brought back to British trench line. The objectives were scattered to create a need to move about the battlefield and an action was required to pick them up, which would mean they would be stationary for at least one action.
Using the 7ombie TV rules I created 8 characters and one each was selected randomly by each player. Neither the Sergent nor the corporal were selected meaning the raid would be lead by a lance corporal (Patrick one of the younger members). Tim (Patricks Dad) had the only medic, all the other players had privates with various levels of combat abilities. Ian had the best rifle marksman, Relfie the best brawler, Kev had a pistol to supplement his rifle and Frasier the most agile. They all had a rifle and a bayonet.
Kev, Ian and Relfie sprint
Pat split the squad and gave each team one of the three objectives. Kev, Ian and Relfie had an objective the furthest from their start line, inches from the other side of the board. They set of fast double moving as much as possible. Kev take an action and shoots the Zombie that is shambling towards then from the trench they have just left. He plugs it and it kisses dirt. Not a head shot though so it's still in the being the highest ranking character also had an extra figure and they also sprinted through the front line to the centre of the board. They managed to retrieve a strange gas canister. The Extra was put in charge of carrying it.

Patrick with an extra reach the centre objective
Meanwhile Frasier and Tim were being more cautious. Having the closest objective but close to several spawning points They reached the trench edge and were driven back with Tim taking a wound. They withdrew out of zombie attack range while Tim used the first aid pack and hes medic skill. It took him a couple of attempts but managed it in the end. By this time however sufficient Zombies had arrived to make their initial plan un-workable. The Zombie Tank appears, but never ever gets to attack the fast moving Brits

Frasier and Tim approach their objective.
Relfie and Kev stand in the open and keep firing at the zombies trying to come at their rear. While they don't close the back door completely they do manage to drop enough Zeds to allow Ian to scamper into the far trench and pick up a bloodstained journal. Bringing on More Zombies each turn I spawned some close to Ian. Unfortunately he managed to get out of the trench before they could close on him (Curses)
Patrick runs to meet up with Relfie and Kev.
With the canister Patrick orders his extra to carry it as they try to meet up with Kev, Ian and Relfie. They were struggling with ammo reloads (rolling lots of 1's). But despite this they continued to drop Zombies and even managed one or two head shots. Overall they did manage to hold the zombies back  sufficiently to allow a regrouping action.

The squad joins up (except Frasier and Tim)
Having joined up (except Tim and Fraser) they quickly formulated a shoot and scoot policy to keep them moving out of the attack radius of the zombies. They had two of the three objectives but still had to get back to their own lines (off their starting edge.) The zombies do try to close in, and do make the players pick their targets carefully. At this stage only one of the downed Zeds has managed to stand up again (No not the one Kev shot first, that one did stand up eventually but not with anyone close enough to make it interesting.

Tim In trouble
Meanwhile Tim and Frasier have problems of their own. Frasier moves away and leaves Tim to keep the zombies away. Tim gets another wound but disengages and in a heroic surge dives back into the trench and reaches the objective. He picks it up, But then being so far away from friendlies and surrounded by Zeds fails his morale check and is forced to flee the board without the objective. No doubt gibbering when he gets back to his own fronline. He may face a court marshal for cowardice in the face of the enemy, or he may get sectioned if he gibbers about undead Germans enough. Harsh.
Still plenty of zeds near the 3rd objective
Shoot and Scoot policy in action

The fire and move tactics work in drawing the zombies towards the main squad. When they get close enough to form a gap Kev charges past them towards the last objective. I am not sure if it was his intention to drag some zombies away from the main group or a desperate attempt to get all three objectives. Whichever it was it was very daring, I'll have to have words with him!

Approaching the last ternch
Frasier moves up the edge of the board towards the rest of the squad (minus Kev of course) keeping the wire between himself and the undead.Moving into a position to help out should they need it.

Kev does get swamped by 4 zombies but I only manage to get one wound on him and next action he's through them all and has a clear run onto the objective now the Zeds have been dragged to the other end of the battlefield.

Where's Kev Gone?
The Rest take the opportunity and Relfie jumps into a trench full of zeds with Ian promising to back him up. We are all surprised when he does. The first zed shot finally stands up (Tim is now helping me play the zombies as I have about 45 zeds on the board, much to my relief as he manages to stand a few up. Ian then Persuades Patrick to jump into the trench to be ablative armour on Ian's behalf.
The squad continues to fight along the trench now that they have realised that Relfie isn't a great shot but is an excellent brawler and able to drop two zeds a turn. A real powerhouse he pushes through. The others all do their bit but Relfie just keeps the front zombies stunned and they move on like some kind of convoy.
Kev's special abilities are based around his morale and he's not to bothered with being all alone. yes he does fail a couple of morale checks but with his skills and good re rolls is unaffected. He does get mobbed by a group of zombies at the final objective but bad dice rolls mean I fail to hit him so he scoops it up and dashes away.

Frasier lends a hand
Everyone else scrambles out of the trench and in the final turn manage to get off the table edge. So the Goodies won. (Boo Hiss) .

Lessons leaned/conclusion. Firstly the players seemed to enjoy it. And so they should, they won and beat me not that I'm bitter. I will get revenge though you have been warned.

The rules are really simple and easy to adapt which means that for the most part we can remember them and just get on with the game. Which is what we want after all and not tediously having to look things up all the time.

Initiative worked better in the "Car-park" game as it was less predictable as to who would go next and thus made the game more interesting as it was harder to know if the living could always stay just out of contact. This meant the Shoot and Scoot tactics worked really well. This a more random initiative it would be harder to manipulate the moves to your advantage.

Kev at the last objective
The second ting about having so many zombies would be that they zombies need more than one initiative setting. By this I mean a proportion of the zeds having a different mark on their base (say red and green) and different initiative counters so they would be activated at different times. Making a far less predictable game. I think I shall do this by grass tufts or no tufts.

Thanks to Relfie for some of the Photos. I faded the colours to reflect the era the game was set in. also because it gave a unified effect as all the figures and terrain were so different. I hope it has not detracted too much from the game. Personally I think it works, but it only works if you think so as well.

Action in the last trench
Lastly I know this is pic heavy, I have tried to keep it in order, but I may have some sequencing wrong between my and Relfies Photos, again I hope you'll forgive that.

Anyway that's what we did at the club yesterday. I have proposed a Zombie campaign and will be working towards that after Broadside. I shall start typing back ground for it from now though so feel free to shoot ideas at me.

All the best, take care and thanks for reading.
Cheers Clint.

Fighting through

Kev gets Mobbed

Nearly there

Last turn with players gone and zombies milling about


  1. Thats awesome! Those black and white photos really make it a movie!

  2. Nice pics Clint, cool idea having them in B&W!!

  3. I loved it, well done and the pics are great!

  4. I thought the B+W worked, but sometimes you can be too close to it to make a clear judgement. Thanks for the comments guys.

  5. Like the B&W, just adds an extra layer to it. And can't beat zombies.

  6. Only just found this Clint - great report! Will be seeing more WW1 Zombie action?

    1. not in the imediate future... too many ideas too little time.

  7. Wow, nice stuff sir. Very pretty indeed.


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