Battle Report and Game Review – Okum Arts’ Zombie Ruckus

So a few months back I participated in the Save the Day Kick-Starter because:

1) I love Super Heroes and needed a simple rule-set if I wanted to play (Champions is too complicated for some of players)

2) I wanted a game that could serve as a Gateway for my son when he’s a little older, so I could share my hobby with him

3) I only had a small handful of HeroClix to go with my Mage-Knight minis I converted for DnD, and one of the pledge levels gave access to a BUNCH of minis 😀

At any rate, during my time of corresponding with the game’s creator David Okum, I mentioned I wanted to use the rules for a Zombie Apocalypse themed game for Halloween. I think this inspired him to create his paper minis and rule-set – Armageddon Outta Here: Zombie Ruckus. Even if I wasn’t the source of inspiration, it’s still freakin’ awesome!

At any rate, as a special Halloween gift for those of us who participated in the Kick-Starter, we all got a free copy of these minis and the game rules. Thanks Dave!

So I ran a game on Wednesday (our regularly scheduled game time) using the Paper City I’ve been building, as well as the Paper Minis from Zombie Ruckus.

First a quick review of the Minis:

Like all of Dave’s artwork, there is definitely a touch of manga to the art style. I will point out that one of the Survivors in the set is the same artwork as one of the paper minis from his Panicked Civilians paper model set, only with a different color scheme and she’s holding a gun. But the zombies all look good, even the Enhanced Zombies and the Brute (who looks like a Daemon Prince of Nurgle!).

My only gripe was that for some reason they were really really dark when I printed them out. Not sure if that’ due to the minis or my printer. Probably my printer.

Anyway, before printing, I filled in some of the white negative space with black using Gimp (because I didn’t want to have to take the time the color that in with a sharpie and I hate cutting fiddly bits). I also did a page of Just Zombies and Just Advanced/Brutes (flipped so they weren’t all identical). I love Gimp!

I also burned an entire weekend doing custom bases. Why? I dunno, seemed like a good idea at the time…

Anyway, on to the battle report! Here’s the layout:

You cant see because of the way the camera cut off the bottom, but my mini-mall box-buildings were on the side of the table closest to me. Under the character sheets are Box-Lids I used as improvised buildings to fill out the map a bit. I will point out that I should have made more Intersection and T-Junction street tiles, but I digress.

Each of my three players got two survivors to run – one with a handgun and one with a light melee weapon. They picked their Talents and we were ready to go. I warned them that based on past experience, using a gun could bring more Zombies to the map.

After explaining the rules, it was decided that they would get 5 action points each turn, and they could roll their unspent action points over. Unfortunately this lead to one survivor accumulating over 20 unspent action points. Though this probably saved her skin since it allowed her to take multiple attacks against enemies since she stood her ground.

Anyway, the Survivors started in the bottom left of the map, and I closed off most of the streets with wrecked vehicles.

Using the scenario generator rules, I rolled “Find a Needed Part.” So told them the generator at their stronghold was broke and they needed parts from a hardware store.

They entered the map and I placed some zombies within their line of sight. They attempted to sneak to a mechanic’s shop but one of the party failed a stealth check, and attracted the attention of three walkers. Those three walkers attracted the attention of two more, and soon they had a nice little gang to deal with.

Two Melee Survivors took point with two Pistol-wielders behind them, while one melee and one gunman looted the Mechanics shop for supplies.

Meanwhile every other turn I rolled to see if more zombies showed up and where they showed up. The first roll was double-sixes, placing a Brute on the Map. I put the Brute behind a bus that it needed to move to get onto the map. With its ability, I decided it needed to roll a six to move the bus in a single turn, but it could wiggle it with a 4 or 5. Needless to say it was stuck behind the bus for a while.

After dealing with the closest zombies, the survivors spent some time looting vehicles and buildings before the next wave of Zombies arrived. That’s when things went pear-shaped, with the zombies One-Hit-Killing two survivors while the survivors have been taking 3-4 attacks to kill the zombies.

After the third survivor fell, I decided the zombies that ganged up on him (he was surrounded by four of them) were too busy feasting to go after the other three. That was when the Brute made his appearance. One survivor held her action and readied an attack for when the brute got to her, while another survivor fired on the Brute from afar.

The other melee survivor moved in to help, but not before his friend died. Finally it was down to the last two survivors who killed the Brute, at which point I said “okay, so your survivors manage to sneak to the Hardware Store and find the part they need and escape.”

Our impressions?

The zombie were too fracking tough! 6 Health and 2 points of Damage Reduction? Too much! Being able to One-Shot Kill a PC? Too much! Frankly I’m amazed there were any survivors, let alone two.

Maybe it’s because this was my first time running the rule-set… but next I run this I’m gonna have each survivor have 1 pistol with one clip of ammo, and 1 melee weapon. Also gonna make the zombies easier to kill… because they were ridiculously tough. Especially at 2-1 odds.

At any rate, I think with some tweaking, Zombie Ruckus has a lot of potential. I’m also thinking that Survivors should only be able to roll over 5 unspent action points.

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