Zombie Apocali (Saturday, April 10, 2010)


·         Hank (Alan)

·         Dodge (Jeff)

·         Jack (Paul)

·         Nathan (Darren)

Last game among the many things that can hurt the enemies of the vampires (silver bullets, salt, whoopee cushions) hoarded at a warehouse in New Orleans was also a manifest with an address. Some research reveals that while the address does not appear within the city, it is in an outlying area on the fringes. We make the journey through the swamp by van and wind up at what appears to be an asylum of some sort. Lurking around are many figures in the yard. Some examination of the motions and study via mystic sight reveals that they are not normal. In fact they’re quite nuts. What’s worse is that there are maybe a hundred of them in the yard and that mixed among them are a few of our loved ones. We decide to get supplies at come back at dark when our powers are active.

We get our act together (mostly) and head out to do battle. Or more appropriately, to look for clues and retrieve loved ones with as little confrontation as our frail human bones and muster. If I could muster one word to describe the “no confrontation” part of things, that word would be FAIL.

At night we approach and set to getting in. First task is that the fence is metal and 8ft tall, plus it’s electrified, so we have to short circuit it. I (Nathan) consider a number of possibilities, including using my powers to stop the electricity in a section) but since the group can do all of the things I’m considering and do it without me wasting energy, I’m all for that. Instead Hank has a big metal shield in front of him to obscure bursts of light while he uses a torch to cut through the railing. At the same time he’s used his engineered a way to divert the electricity around the section where he’s working.

Any zombie-patients who see us charge the fence. Did I mention they were zombies? Well, seems rather than being the classic voodoo zombies we ran into last game these are the plague zombie types. There’s a biological agent making them berserkers. They meander until they see something living, then they chaaaaarge. Speaking of charges, any that rush us electrocute themselves on the fence and after we back off they go back to what they were doing.

Well, seconds after we pierce the fence, as we consider our next move, something else happens. A handful of werewolves show up on the scene accompanied by Durochier (the ally/mage) and the Revenant who we sicced on the vamp club downtown. Seems that Durochier and his buddies have decided to go on the offensive. They’ve come to kick ass and chew bubblegum. One wolf rips the gate off and tosses it aside, and the siege begins, to which we are almost incidental rather than principal.

A word on the Zombie Apocalypseses (Apocali): Said zombies are basically your guard dogs in the yard or your alligators in the moat. They’re left outside at all hours to prevent anyone from simply gaining access. But they’re more than that. Whatever it is that infects them is highly contagious: one bite and you got it too. Hence blows upon our person by said zombies are asterisked. This is the end of the world, should one of these guys get outside, as the exponential growth would cause all humanity to turn into them. And once the world is all human zombies, there’s nothing for vampires to fear and they have all the blood they can drink. Of course there are those werewolves though. So maybe not “nothing” to fear.

Once again, on our part, the botching was impressive! This all started with Hank getting an early botch, which since we each carry an object that helps reduce the horrible side effects, was a freebie. It’s the subsequent botches that will reap the whirlwind. One such botch (about 4th or 5th in line) is what bumped the title of this thread from “Zombie Apocalypse” into the plural. The more memorable (but by no means all of the) botches are:
• Nathan tries to lure his dad (one of the zombies in the mix) toward the fence, where he uses his very minor command of electricity to try and shock the dude. Jack has come over that way through the chaos to try and assist. However, that makes him a target when Nathan botches and the electricity targets Jack instead and courses through his system, for a bunch of bashing damage.
• Jack tries to use one of his powers to try and make a crazy zombie-human ill and botches well! He has just mutated the virus. It now spreads to the grass around his intended target. Yup, Zombie Grass. It can now spread on the wind or by contact with the grass.
• During one of the times where Dodge’s sword is on the ground (which is often, as he has to keep dropping it to extricate himself from zombie tacklers), Nathan tries to use his manipulation of fire to launch the flame from it at our foes. Unfortunately, he botches and gets Dodge instead, delivering agro damage.
• Jack fires a gun across the courtyard at some of the zombies near the exit and botches, instead hitting Nathan’s dog,

During all this, Hank is like zombie catnip. He keeps pulling them like crazy. The rules of this chaotic engagement seem to be as follows: Every turn every player who is in the courtyard area rolls 1D10. On a 2-6, nothing happens. On a 7-9, a zombie breaks off from what he is doing and comes after them (and will stay on them until destroyed or stopped). On a 10, two zombies show up. And on a 1, randomly either a vampire has shown up or a werewolf. The vampire stay engaged, however, the werewolves just attack everything within reach and move on next round, like a force of nature.

The Revenant has found his fight; he’s engaged with a vampire who resembles him, only younger. It’s his son! The reason he’s still in this world is to avenge what they did to his son. Now he can do so, theoretically. Durochier, the mage, is searching the premises for his daughter and doesn’t find her. When he returns he assists Hank with his foes before they go inside in search of one of our missing folks.

Some of the many ways we do away with zombies and vampires include: Dodge vivisecting/cauterizing them with his flaming sword; Nathan shocking one with the fence and burning others with flame drawn from Dodge’s sword; Jack making some sick and filling others full of led; Hank dices up a few with his axe, but manages to really infuriate a few vampires by using his UV Flashlight on them, to the point where given the opportunity to rush him or to run after the flashlight lying on the ground across the yard, the vamp rushed the flashlight and destroyed it.

Dodge calls for help. He uses his spirit summoning ability to pull up a level 1 spirit, which can do only some minor things, but in this case it’s perfect for the task of doing away with the zombie grass. Being a nature spirit, it’s inclined to do so and needs only the most minor of bargains.

Inside, Hank and Durochier find one of our missing folks AND a ghoul who seems intent on protecting a desk nearby. Durochier takes out the ghoul, but Hank has to fight the woman, who is more capable than most of our lost minions. He does win, however, and so they loot the desk and come outside where we’re catching our loved ones. Those retrieved are: Simon’s girlfriend, Nathan’s Dad, Christine’s Dad, Gabriel’s Sister, and Hank’s son-in-law. All must be bound up and carted around for quite a while as we determine what to do with them.

The only person to really go down during the chaos was Nathan, who caught the brunt of one werewolf visit. But thanks to burning motes for health and assistance of Jack, he’ll at least be in a wheelchair within days. Which is good because now we have to go after a cure for the zombie plague, since Jack’s estimate is that the two of us who got injured by zombie blows will end up being zombies within 3 days.

One of the clues gained indicates a Beltaine Labs, a pharmaceutical company. Seems that since the vamp plan involves needing the ability to reverse all of this zombie-ism if something fails in their plan, they need to have a cure. We surmise this is our best chance of getting it.

Dodge summons another spirit, one bigger than the last. This sleep spirit agrees to put to sleep anyone who Dodge wants, but for each attempt at such Dodge agrees to stay awake for a whole day. All those days would be contiguous, but should he fail to stay awake that whole time he will forfeit one of his merits for good. He starts by putting out a guard. Nathan takes his clothes and such and since he can’t run around inside in a wheelchair, he stays on the gate and pretends to be the guard. Near as he can tell, this involves watching parking lot cameras and eating twinkies out of a lunch box.

Inside the group start to run into what we now refer to as “indoor zombies”. The voodoo zombies of last game seem to be encountered guarding things inside, whereas the plague zombies are something we seem to run into outside. The team of 3 encounter three such indoor zombies. The real trouble happens when they find a lab. Inside is the lovely and dangerous daughter of Durochier, who is quite fast and tries to attack the characters. She’s not easy to hit and opts for physical combat. (Seems Mark forgot to make her go mental.) Anyway, she hits Jack with enough force to put him through a wall and wrap his damage back around from bashing to lethal. Dodge is engaged with her physically and that’s when Hank decides to warn him to close his eyes and steps around the corner before he lets off an anti-vampire flashbang. It blinds and deafens them but has the additional bonus of burning the crap out of her.

They grab the cure and make for the exit: Jack is unconscious and being carried by Dodge who is blind, who is being led by Hank. Now the alarm is going off because of the boom-boom. So Nathan wheels into action and arrives at the door as they put a couple slugs into Hank. So now hank is down, Jack is down, and Dodge is blind. (Why is it that security guard ghouls are always our biggest bane?) So Nathan pulls the door closed before the guards can get there and uses his fire powers to fuse the door shut. The group departs.

The cur works. We take the extra vials and ship them off for replication, just in case.

Next stop: Chicago. Seems that we’ve staved off the end-of-the-world once again… for about 2 months. We will be visiting the succubus club, to find out what their take on the big finale is. So far we’ve had Vampires doing addictive blood tricks in Los Angeles, Vamps in New Orleans creating a zombie plague, and now we’re off to the windy city. Stop two more apocalypses and we get a free 6” sub at participating restaurants.