Zombies by G.A.S.L.I.G.H.T.

A view of the table late in the game
A view of the table late in the game

Last night we played a really fun zombies game using straight GASLIGHT with the free Zombies by GASLIGHT download from RPGNow.  The basic scenario was a rescue situation.  Several groups of survivors were trying to get to the compound, rescue the people, load all the supplied into their truck, and get back off the table.  When the game began, the “compound” was defended by just three figures, and there were over 20 zombies on the table.  In the center, you can see the overturned truck.  These began the game overturned with four “teamsters” trying to get them working again.  The teamsters were unarmed except for one figure with a baseball back.  All the rest of the figures began the game at the far end of the table, loaded into the truck.

A view of the table early in the game
A view of the table early in the game

Whenever anyone makes noise, such as running the truck engine or firing a weapon, some number of “noise markers” are placed on the table.  When the “zombie spawn” card is drawn, the zombie player rolls to determine how many, what kind, and where the zombies appear.  This picture is early in the game.  At the top right you can see the rescue truck approaching.  In the top(ish) center you can see Grandma Schlegel, one of the compound’s defenders, becoming surrounded by zombies.  Though she was an Extra, Grandma Schlegel survived to the end of the game.  The use of noise markers reduces the amount of shooting that the players do, because while shooting can kill zombies, it often attracts more than it kills.

Creepers approaching the compound
Creepers approaching the compound

Zombies come on one of three types: creepers (that move slowly and fight poorly), runners (who fight well and move quickly), and bloaters.  When a bloater dies, they burst open and spread spores.  Anyone within three inches of the bloater must pass a Save or risk infection.  In addition, when a figure takes a hit from a zombie, the figure rolls 1d10.  Each turn or each subsequent hit, the die is decremented.  When it reaches 2, the figure makes a second Save.  Failing this Save means the figure becomes a zombie in two turns.  By the end of the game, the humans had lost five figures by becoming zombies, forcing the players to kill their own men.

"Palmer Tell" facing off against zombies after jumping off the rescue truck
"Palmer Tell" facing off against zombies after jumping off the rescue truck

I thought the man armed with a bow would be very effective.  It was the only ranged weapon that made no noise.  Unfortunately on his second shot, Palmer Tell snapped his bow string.  Before fixing it, he leapt from the truck, where he was quickly surrounded by hungry zombies.  He fought valiantly for many turns, but he eventually succumbed and became a zombie himself.

Zombies closing in on Grandma Schlegel
Zombies closing in on Grandma Schlegel
The rescue truck pushing its way through wreckage
The rescue truck pushing its way through wreckage
The rescue truck reaches the compound
The rescue truck reaches the compound

The game was a nail biter until the end.  All of the players had at least one figure finish the game.  The players received one victory point for each “piece” of supplies.  Each pile of supplies scattered around the compound contained four “pieces.”  The humans lost four victory points for each figure killed or turned into a zombie.  The humans were trying to have a positive number of points.  There were 32 points in the compound.  Since the humans lost 5 figures, the needed 20 points of supplies just to break even.  In the end, they had collected 25 points and got away.

The game was loud, funny, and boisterous.

Loading supplies on the truck while fighting zombies
Loading supplies on the truck while fighting zombies

In this picture you can see a nun who had been hit by a zombie.  You can see the ten-sided die used to count down the number of turns before she was going to have to Save or become a zombie.  Several bloaters blocked the path between the supplies and the truck.  The truck couldn’t pull over, because the two figures in the truck, including another nun, were  busy fighting their own zombies.