Saturday, April 3, 2010

ATZ Demo Game

This morning Jil and I set out to put on a demo game of ATZ (All Things Zombie by Two Hour Wargames) at Montag's game shop here in the Houston area.  I had never been there before but Jil was a regular there and knows everyone.  Unfortunately my camera ran out of disk space half way through the game so I am not going to batrep it, but here are some highlights.
There were many new players and we had about 8 in total I think.  For the scenario I decided to give all the players a choice between a Rep 5 detective/Sheriff with handgun or  a Rep 4 Police Officer with shotgun/assault rifle etc..  It was a day 3 scenario and the objective was for the law dawgs to go in and rescue any survivors left in the town which mainly consisted of school kids who were small enough to hide from the Zeds.  The game was a huge success as it always is, and even though this large game took a while, it was paced well and everyone had a blast.  Alas my character went OOF late in the game due to some bad luck with the melee dice Gods, and we lost another officer KIA, but the mission was a huge success overall with all the kids recovered.  Once again I confirmed that I simply do not have enough Zeds.  In this game I estimate that I really needed about 200 - 250.
ATZ is just a really kick arse game.  Time and time again it is a proven winner where players receive it very well, they pick it up real fast, and nobody ever complains or whines, they just have fun.  If you don't play ATZ you are missing out big time.  Here's a few highlights before I ran out of camera space.
I went with one of my standard layouts and used the river gag again.  It is a great strategic problem for the players with the bridge being the only way across.
The other side of the map and the fuel truck is back.  I keep hoping someone will finally make use of it!
Early on, Hunter split up from the group and quickly found himself in a jam.  He managed to scrape free and I must say he was much more respectful of the Zeds the rest of the game.
Here's Jil, Nick, Mike, and myself carefully scouting the town and dropping some stray Zeds while maintaining a good over watch.
The thinning of the Zed ranks wasn't going so well so it was time to bugger off.
Both groups started finding kids and escorting off the table.  Overall things are going well.
But make no mistake, there are still a lot of Zeds roaming the table.
While the players are clearing buildings and escorting rescued kids, Jil and Hunter are busy getting a nasty surprise together for the Zeds.  They plan to make the worlds biggest Molotov Cocktail.
The only trouble is the activations go bad and Jil suffers a very close call with a huge mob of Zeds.  There are Zeds behind him also.
But the lads do manage to pull it off and a city block goes up in a big flash.  The Zeds are engulfed and destroyed and Hunter and Jil manage to get free.  
Although the big firebomb was quite successful, much of it's effects were negated by the amount of Zeds that it attracted from all directions.
The two teams keep surgically clearing all the buildings and rescuing kids.
All in all it is pretty professional work when you consider there are several new players.
But ATZ is still the king of kicking you in the teeth just when you think the world is all jelly donuts.  A car alarm goes off and it is not long before the Zed population is out of control.
On the other side of the river one group is still playing hide and seek with the Zeds over there.
And one group is stopping at the armory for an upgrade in their weapons situation.
In a tussle in the gas station, I have some bad luck and go OOF to a Zed.  Drats!
Hunter has decided that he's sick of Zeds and declares that he's going to run them down in this Porsh that has the keys in it.  Before he takes off he is joined by Leo.
It is a short trip because after running down a bunch of Zeds he loses control of the car.  Leo is killed on impact and Hunter is stunned.  Fortunately for Hunter, Leo is closer to the Zeds so they go to feast on him allowing Hunter to recover and scat off the board.

This is where I ran out of camera juice.  From this point on everything went down hill rapidly.  One group got into another car and managed to smash their way through a few Zeds and escape off board.  There were so many Zeds being generated from the car alarm and gunfire, and the cars being driven that it became impossible to regain control so everyone had to bail and evacuate.  Another officer was lost in a melee but carried off board by his brother but he was infected and had to be capped later.  The good news was that all the kids were recovered before the cataclysmic breakdown.  All in all the players played quite well and this game was a lot of fun.  But the Zeds will always get theirs.
Now after a little rest me and Jil are going to do a little twilight gaming again!


  1. Just another great report...

  2. well it could have been worse that many peaple all split up all those guns and cars
    cantwait for another bat rep
    sounds like a great game
    im still looking for rules in england i wanna kill zeds of my own i will not giveup

  3. Thanks for a great read again. Sounds like you had a great time.

    @zombiehunter: You can buy ATZ as a pdf, so that should not be a problem.

  4. my computerhas a natural hatred of pdfs they dont work and i need to change the settings.
    anyway after reading this i found the older vertion of the rules so i may just go whith that.

  5. oh and do you know were i could get downloadable buildings free quility deosent have to be great 4 my little bro and his games

  6. @Ruarigh: It was a great day. After this Jil and I did manage some twilight Wings of War as threatened. Geez we are sick. In the background behind all this we are still plugging away at our epic Napoleonic project. I think we will start gaming them more this Summer as we are getting some of the finishing touches up now.

    @Zombiehunter: When I was starting out I found a couple of links.
    There are also a couple of sites that offer some free models for school etc.. Just Google
    Happy gaming!

  7. great bit of on the scene journalism, my friend. i truly enjoy being in the action and you do run a pretty smooth game considering all the new players. keep up the great work. we gotta do some nuts! soon.


  8. Willy, your batreps are always so entertaining and this one was no different. THW should pay you commission for all the great publicity you're giving to their games, especially ATZ!

  9. Great batrep...again!

    I like the scenario and it was a clever move to let them choose between a Rep 5 with just a handgun or just a Rep 4 with a proper firearm. It looks like many of them favored bigger guns.

    World biggest molotov cocktail!!! Now that sounds like a reasonable plan! :o)
    What would have been the consequences of a failed challenge test?

  10. Bryan, I love pimping Ed's stuff simply because it has brought us so much gaming happiness. I hate to think that other gamers are missing out!

    Whiteface, If they failed the challenge they would have been caught in the blast and checked against a impact 5 explosion. In other words, toast! It was a 24" explosion.
    A very interesting thing that was well illustrated in this game was the Rep 4 characters failed to activate a lot while the rep 5 guys stayed on the move. So a single rep point is actually a very significant boost.

    We played very casually, taking breaks for food etc.. and this large game went for at least 4 hours. However, the pace while playing was good and all the players were very involved and had a great time playing in this relaxed state. Most of the players were between 10 and 20 and time and time again I think I enjoy playing games the most with kids. That includes my buddy Jil who is just a big kid like myself!

  11. I gotta' say I would've gone with the Rep5 given my experience with the game. The activation is far more important than the firepower unless you're going after other humans.
    I can visualize the younger players scoffing at the Rep and drooling over longarms. It's one of the reasons this game is great: So much of a player's real-world persona ends up translating into their character.
    For further evidence refer to any prior ATZ batrep to check out LTL Dad's son's antics. Pure youngblood bravado! Meanwhile Mom and Dad are trying to be sensible. It's awesome!

  12. Yep, I would have chosen a Rep5 with a handgun too. Some Rep4 will drop his rifle sooner or later...probably sooner.