Tuesday, 3 July 2012

My ATZ Campaign - Day 62 - Assault on Precinct 13 part 1

"The prisoners are here, sir" Detective Mitchell Brandt announced.
He stood in the doorway of the Captain's Office of the Mayhem City Precinct 13 Police Station. He was in his late twenties, a good looking man, who cared a lot about his appearance. He carried a Heckler and Koch 9mm MP5A3 Sub-Machine Gun and wore a police-issue flak vest over his white shirt.
With him was SWAT Sergeant Wayne Connors, dressed in full riot gear and holding a .45 calibre Kimber Custom II Pistol, which was pointed at the two prisoners, Vampifan and Big Sil. Neither prisoner was handcuffed.
Seated behind a cluttered desk was Captain Alan Marquez, a gruff, no-nonsense officer, who wore his hair in a military crew cut. He was 48 years old but the past two months had aged him considerably. He had lost far too many good men and women and now all that remained of his precinct was a skeleton crew. It was his decision to try and maintain law and order in a world that had been plunged into absolute chaos.
"Thank you, Brandt," he said. "So, Sleeping Beauty has decided to join the living. How are you feeling?"
His question was directed at Big Sil, who had been comatose for most of the day, thanks to a beating he'd received from Vampifan early that morning.  
"I've had better days," the bearded biker replied sourly.
"What happens now?" Vampifan asked with a note of concern.
"What happens now is that you're free to go," Marquez replied with a wry smile. "Once you pay your fine!"
Vampifan sighed. "What fine? No-one is using cash any more."
"Exactly" Marquez replied. "So, leave behind one of your firearms or body armour and we'll let you go. Refuse and we keep the lot. So what do you say?"
On the Captain's desk were Vampifan's 7.62mm Heckler and Koch G3 Assault Rifle, his .50 calibre IMI Desert Eagle Pistol, Big Sil's 5.56mm Colt M16A2 Assault Rifle and both of their flak vests. Their combat knives were also there, but they were not part of the deal. 
"Okay," Vampifan said resignedly, "you can keep the Desert Eagle. Sil?"
"I'll need the rifle more than the vest. You can have the vest."
"Excellent, gentlemen." Marquez looked at them with a satisfied smile. "It's been a pleasure doing... what the hell is that racket?"
Loud music could suddenly be heard from what appeared to be just outside his office.
"I do believe it's the Birdie Song by the Tweets," Big Sil replied knowingly.

The cast of characters for this scenario were from left to right in the photo above -
Vampifan - Rep:6 Star with Nerves of Steel and Slow. Armed with Assault Rifle, Combat Knife and Body Armour.
Big Sil - Rep:5 Grunt with Knife Fighter. Armed with Assault Rifle and Combat Knife.
Captain Alan Marquez - Rep:5 Grunt with Nerves of Steel. Armed with Shotgun and BA Pistol.
Detective Mitchell Brandt - Rep:5 Grunt with no Attribute. Armed with SMG and Body Armour.
SWAT Sergeant Wayne Connors - Rep:5 Grunt with Stone Cold. Armed with Assault Rifle, BA Pistol and Body Armour.
SWAT Trooper Johnny Vincenzo - Rep:5 Grunt with Transporter. Armed with SMG, BA Pistol and Body Armour.
SWAT Trooper Gemma Kelly - Rep:5 Grunt with Athlete. Armed with SMG, BA Pistol and Body Armour.
Patrolman Kenneth Tybald - Rep:4 Grunt with Brawler. Armed with Shotgun and BA Pistol.
Patrolwoman Sally Gibson - Rep:4 Grunt with Runt. Armed with BA Pistol.
Rookie Ryan Markowitz - Rep:3 Grunt with Poser. Armed with BA Pistol.

The scenario used the Better Dead Than Zed rulebook and the I, Zombie supplement. Because this was a scenario I had designed, I made a few changes to the rules. 
The first was to design a new PEF Placement Chart, which is shown to the left. Instead of rolling 1d6 to determine where a PEF would be placed, I would roll 1d8. The eight sectors surrounding the central sector (Sector 9) were all potential locations for a PEF to appear. In the photo of the game board shown above, Sector 1 is in the bottom right hand corner of the photo, where the garbage truck has been abandoned.

Next, I redesigned the PEF Resolution Table as I wanted more control over who or what appeared.
No. of Resolved PEFs   1   2    3    4    5    6   
           0 PEFs                    A   A   A   B   B   D       A = Killer Klown. If already chosen then count as B
           1 PEF                     A   A   B    B   D   D       B = Zombies
           2 PEFs                   A   B   B    B   D   D      C = Team Vampi. If already chosen then count as B
          3+ PEFs                  B   C   C    D   D   D      D = False alarm
In addition, I grouped all of the characters under the command of Captain Marquez (Rep:5), even though Vampifan and Big Sil were not technically part of their group. From a gaming point of view it made sense to combine the defenders into one big group. Also, I deliberately ignored the rule for unit cohesion, otherwise I'd have had far too many groups rolling for Activation. As long as everyone was in or very close to the police station they were classed as one group no matter how far away they were. I also did not roll for lack of sleep as I wanted everyone on their toes.
The game was played on a 6' by 4' board. This was the first time I had played ATZ on such a large board. Fortunately, I have more than enough buildings and scenery to fill it. The scenario took place in one of the suburbs of Mayhem City during the evening of day 62 of the Outbreak.
In the police station, all of the ground floor windows and external doors had been barricaded with wooden pallets. This made the doors Rep:4 and the windows Rep:3 to defend against attempts to break in.
I rolled for the placement of the initial three PEFs and for their Reps. PEF:1 was Rep:5 and was placed in Sector 1 behind the garbage truck.
 PEF:2 was Rep: 3 and was placed in Sector 8 behind the green van.
PEF:3 was also Rep:3. It was placed in Sector 4 at the far side of the blue car.

Day 62 - Assault on Precinct 13 part 1
In the police station, Patrolman Tybald manned the front desk in the reception hall, whilst his colleague, Rookie Markowitz, poured a cup of coffee from the vending machine. Note the barricaded front door.
In the Captain's Office, Captain Marquez had just finished talking to Vampifan and Big Sil. Detective Brandt and SWAT Sergeant Connors stood in attendance.
In the CCTV Monitor Room, Patrolwoman Gibson surveyed the immediate area around the police station. Incredibly, they still had electricity and most of the cameras were still working.
On the roof, SWAT Troopers Vincenzo and Kelly kept a weary lookout, not quite as alert as they should have been after hours of boring monotony. Nothing exciting had happened for quite a while.
TURN 1.   Activation - Police = 6, PEFs = 5  
The Police were unable to activate this turn. PEF:1 with the highest Rep passed 2d6 on the PEF Movement Table and moved one Sector towards the nearest group of players. I placed it at the NW corner of the police station in Sector 9, in cover behind the blue hatchback but in sight of SWAT Trooper Kelly. I rolled 1d6 on my new PEF Resolution Table and scored a 2, giving me a result of "A," meaning Killer Klowns. Actually, just one arrived, driving a pick-up truck, loaded with a hi-fi system and a huge speaker. The evil clown played the intensely annoying "Birdie Song" by the Tweets at full volume.
PEF: 3 also passed 2d6 on the PEF Movement Chart and it moved into Sector 9 at the back door of the police station. It was spotted by SWAT Trooper Vincenzo but turned out to be a false alarm. That was a relief for the defenders.
PEF:2 only passed 1d6 on the PEF Movement Chart. Because there were no more PEFs left on the board it moved to the closest group of players - Sector 9, once again. This time I placed it in the car park near the front entrance of the police station. It was in cover but once more, was in sight from SWAT Trooper Kelly.
This time I got a "B" result for zombies. I rolled to see how many appeared and got a result of half as many again as the defenders, in other words 15. That could be a big problem.
I rolled 12d6 for zombie reinforcements, 6d6 for the pick-up truck's engine and 6d6 for the huge speaker. Defying the odds, 6 appeared, just north of the basketball court.
TURN 2.   Activation - Police = 1, Klowns = 4, Zombies = 6.
I diced to see what the Rep of the Killer Klown driver was. He was Rep:4, so he went first this turn. Leaving the engine running and the speaker system turned up to full volume, he exited the vehicle and sprinted across the road, chuckling all the way.
"Fucking crazy idiot!" SWAT Trooper Vincenzo swore as he fired a three round burst of 9mm bullets at the Killer Klown.
He hit once, but only scored a Knockdown result. The Klown rolled on the Recover From Knockdown test and passed 1d6, meaning he was OOF (Out Of the Fight).
"Oh, holy shit!" SWAT Trooper Kelly swore when she saw the horde of zombies gathered near the front door. She raised her MP5A3 SMG to her shoulder and fired a short controlled burst at the zombies below her. She hit and killed two.
Inside the Captain's Office, Marquez glowered at Big Sil for being so flippant. He grabbed his pump action shotgun, which he kept by the side of his desk. Opening the window behind him, he stepped out onto the roof of the ground floor.
"Connors, with me!" he ordered, having to shout to be heard.
SWAT Sergeant Connors followed obediently, without comment.
Marquez stepped to the corner of the building and blasted the speaker to smithereens with three shots from his 12 gauge Remington 870 shotgun, silencing it for good.
Back inside, Detective Brandt moved to the front of the office and peered outside.
"Oh, God!" he exclaimed as he saw the amount of zombies so close to the front entrance. "This is not good!"
Vampifan and Big Sil said nothing as they loaded fresh ammo clips into their Assault Rifles.
Even though Marquez had destroyed the Killer Klown's hi-fi speaker, it still generated noise this turn and so it contributed to the 24d6 I rolled for zombie reinforcements. Again I rolled better than expected and scored 12 successes. Eight would have been the expected score. Six more appeared in the car park in two groups of three.
Another three appeared at the NE corner of the police station. I'm not sure why the zombie in the purple dress is facing the wrong way. A mistake on my part!
The final three appeared across the road, right beside the Killer Klown. Oh dear, how sad!
TURN 3.   Activation - Police = 5, Zombies = 3.
"Someone has to turn that damned engine off," Captain Marquez announced, "otherwise we'll be swarming with deadheads."
"I'll do it, sir!" SWAT Sergeant Connors volunteered.
"No," Marquez replied. "I'll do it. You cover me."
Captain Marquez always led from the front and would never order his men to do something that he wasn't prepared to do himself. He nimbly dropped down to the front of the pick-up truck then made the short jump to the ground. The driver's door was wide open. Disabling the engine would be a separate action, which, hopefully, he could achieve next turn.
SWAT Sergeant Connors fired a quick three round burst at the group of six zombies closest to Captain Marquez.
 He hit two of them, scoring a pair of fatal head shots.
"What can we do?" Vampifan asked Detective Brandt.
"Get up on the roof," the young detective replied. "You'll be safer there. Gibson, escort these gentlemen upstairs!"
Patrolwoman Gibson stepped out of the CCTV Monitor Room and said in a soft spoken voice, "follow me, guys."
Vampifan and Big Sil did just that as they followed her to the stairs leading up.
Meanwhile, Detective Brandt tried to thin the crowd of zombies below him but he only managed to hit and kill one.
Above him, SWAT Troopers Vincenzo and Kelly fared better. Johnny shot and killed two male zombies lurking at the NW corner of the building.
His colleague, Gemma Kelly, shot and killed another two zombies at the front of the building.
The horde of zombies nearest to the front entrance swarmed forward and attempted to break down the front doors. But the porch funnelled them in and only two at a time could attempt to smash through the barricade. The doors held firm. However, not too far away, a zombie at the SE corner of the building managed to break the window to a detective's office and tear down the barricade blocking his entry. The police station's defences had been breached!
The three zombies closest to the OOF Killer Klown pounced upon him and began to devour him. Their grisly feasting would last for three turns before they were satisfied.
Another four zombies moved dangerously close to Captain Marquez. Next turn's Activation would be crucial.
I rolled 18d6 for zombie reinforcements and 8 appeared. Five turned up by the NW corner of the police station...
...and another three appeared in the southern half of the car park.

Total number of zombies who have appeared so far = 41.


  1. Haven't finished reading it....when did you do the dump truck!? Is that a WWG model?

    1. It is indeed a WWG model. If you click on the tab marked Card Vehicles at the top of the page, you'll see it was the sixth card vehicle that I made. In other words. I made it quite a few years ago!

    2. Oh wow. That means I also read about it a WHILE ago...

      I think you shouldn't have posted this yet. It's going to drive us all nuts.

    3. I think my mission statement to only post twice a week may need a rethink here, Varangian!

  2. Intense! Can't wait for the next part.

    1. Oh. I've only just started, Sean. The tension gets ratched up a lot further next time!

  3. Killer Klowns!!! Oh no. This looks grim.

    1. Killer Klowns and Team Vampifan are never a good combo!

  4. Sil and Vamp better get back downstairs and stop that zed who caused the breech!

    1. What? With that amount of zombies swarming around! I think they're better off where they are.

  5. Nicely set-up and a cracking read.

    I detect a slight change in the way you've presented this write-up, much to my delight.

    The dump truck may not be new, but the heavy plant JCB-type in sector 4 does look new.

    Only turn 3 too and things look grim.

    Looking forward to more of this.

    1. Thanks, Joe, and well spotted. There are a few changes to my write up.

      Also, the JCB is brand new.

      As for how grim things look, you ain't seen nothing yet!

  6. A great read so far, I worry for the captain, knowing that there will be a few deaths this round. I love his sculpt, I hope he makes it.

    1. It all comes down to who wins Activation on the next turn.
      If the Police activate before the zombies he'll be able to switch off the engine and he might escape.
      If the zombies fail to activate his chances of survival improve dramatically.
      If the zombies activate first then his chances of survival don't look good.

  7. This is great. I have all kinds of ideas... thanks!

    1. I'm glad that you feel inspired, Charles. That makes me very happy.

  8. This has started out so well...for the zombies, epic beginning Bryan!

    1. Yes, you have to admit that the zombies have got off to the better start.

  9. Great batrep. I've been looking forward to this and you didn't disappoint. Great looking scenery, and beautifully written narrative. I like your redesign of the PEF table, very nice.

    1. Many thanks, Joe. The PEF tables needed changing for this scenario.

  10. Great and intense batrep. Your pictures are very good ; do you have more than one light source (my pictures are usually darker)?

    1. I use a flash unit on my camera, which is my only light source. It works really well on close up shots and middle distance shots. On some of my long range shots the background can look a bit dark, but I can live with that

  11. ... Wow, what a start. Absolutely stunning idea to use a car with a speaker as noise generator :D And totally fitting into the Killer Klowns theme with the Birdie Song and all. The only thing that was missing was the zombie in the bird costume by StudioMiniatures to make it even more hilarious.
    I even didn't notice there was a gunshot marker on the hood and the speaker until the shot where the speaker is tipped over as I was so anxious about reading on.

    Very nice shot of Kelly with focus on the roof and the two dead zombies on the ground in blur, by the way.

    Only 103 zombies to go, now :D

    Great scenery and well written BatRep as usual. Now about that "only posting twice a week"-thing... ;)

    1. I've had the idea for the running engine and hi-fi system as noise generators for a long time. I kept thinking that one of Mayhem City's many gangs would pull off this stunt, but which one? Then in a flash of inspiration I realised there could only be one - the Killer Klowns!

      I'm giving some serious consideration to my "rule" about only posting twice per week. That may well get relaxed for this batrep.

  12. Intense!!! They are not out of the woods yet, far from it actually!!

    You take great action shots mate and i am reallly looking forward to next edition of Mayhem News!!!!

    1. If you thought part one was intense, Johnny, wait until you see part two!

    2. I actually dread to think about that.....

  13. You really haven't disappointed mate!

    Scenery is just awesome and the story is no worse!

    Except for the spawned zombies, looks like I've missed my guess lol

    1. Cheers, Mathyoo. Hey, if Marquez can disable the pick-up truck's engine next turn the number of zombies appearing per turn will drop dramatically. You're still in with a shout at winning.

  14. Wow beautiful table Bryan, Seriously well done! Looking forward to the continuation of the story. Captain Marquez is one of my favourite figs from the future wars range its a cool pose.

    The zombie facing the wrong was obviously distracted by a cat or something!

    1. Captain Marquez is a cool figure. I'm a big fan of Copplestone's Future Wars range.

      You might be right about the female zombie. Personally. I blame my incompetence for not checking she was on her mark. Bloody extras, I ask you! What can you do?

  15. Knock, knock! Who's there? Killer Klowns!!!

    This scenario is totally crazy and I love it. This is going to be an epic battle. I hope there'll be even more Killer Klowns in Part II...and maybe a circus cannon!

    Is there a Trekkie Zed in the last picture?

    Whiteface / Oliver

    1. There is indeed a zombie Trekkie in that last photo. Well spotted, Oliver. He's part of the Victory Force original zombie horde.

  16. Great BATREP, keep up all this zombie goodness. Cheers.

    1. Will do, Irqan. Lots more zombie goodness coming very soon.

  17. Love it! Can't wait to read more.

  18. Great game so far, and the scenery is just amazing! Can't wait for the next part! :D

    1. Thanks, Carl. I always regard my scenery as important as my figures. If you get it right it can really bring a game to life.

  19. I've been waiting for this for a long time (well, we all have really). I suppose I can curb my impatience until Sunday to see more :).

    1. Actually, you won't have that long to wait, LL. I'm typing part two already and I will post it before Sunday. Cool, huh?

  20. Your best batrep so far, i love it the police station looks great on the table, and its nice to get my name in one of your batreps "wayne". I cant wait for the next parts

    1. I assure that naming my SWAT Sergeant, Wayne was a pure coincidence. You won't have quite so long to wait for part two.

  21. ARRGH Killer klowns!! I'll have nightmares for days now.... its team Vampifan's kryptonite, not good, not good, I can forseer some main characters getting retired by these Clown heads.
    great set up Bryan, and wow, so many zombies, looking forward to the next installment

  22. Wow Bryan!
    A great battle report, really interesting indeed. Looking forward for the next part.. :)
    I hope to be more present from now on! ;)

    1. Hey, welcome back, mate. Please do stick around for the rest of this story. It's only just warming up!

  23. Awesome! This is very interesting. I hope that Vampifan and Big Sil have good luck and can get out of there alive.

    1. Thanks, Tito. Obviously I can't say too much at this stage, but keep the faith.

  24. Brilliant battle report, I really like how the story flows, not just an AAR of Turn 1 blah blah blah, Turn 2...etc