Die Another Day

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Zombie Dice 2 is a three dice expansion for the base game.   It’s called “double feature” as in a Matinee Movie and Stars three new dice.

the Hunk (let’s assume his name is Brad) : Lots of shotguns, including a deadly double shotgun, but also a double brain, so this dice is a real gamble when it turns up.  In addition if he shoots you and you happen to have the Hottie or Santa Claus in your brain pile he rescues them and you lose their brains.  Boo hiss!  he’s behind you etc.

The Hottie : a Pink Dice  (of course) has a lot more run aways.  The pink dice is a real pain the snag and as slippery as a greased up deaf guy

And the piece of resistance

Santa Claus : This is the most interesting of the dice, as well as featuring the normal brain and blasts, you can make out like a bandit with this dice as he features presents of and energy drink which allows you to catch up and change run aways to brains (red bull does indeed give you wings) and a Helmet that allows you to take four shotgun blasts rather than the normal three that lesser less helmeted zombies succumb to

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As expansions go, it’s a bit expensive for what you get. It’s a tenner or so for three dice and two of them are pretty boring.  That said, if you’re willing to fork out it does fit in well with the base game and just like an object of beauty it’ll be a joy forever.

I’ve had the expansion for a long time and it does improve the game.  Shop around and see what you can get it for

Huzzah!

Vic

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RUN! Like a light breeze

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Red in the face, puffing and panting and ready to give up and that’s BEFORE I start running.  Zombies Run! is a game I’ve had on my phone for ages and only recently got around to playing.  It’s clever.  At it’s heart it’s a running app but it does it from an angle that will appeal to a gamer.  In this case running for your life from packs of zombies.

The game itself consists of a number of episodes which can be set to either half or a full hour.  You start off at your own pace and a story plays out where you’ve been sent to a survivors base and wind up becoming a runner for them and have to scavenge resources from the locality. As it plays along a number of characters are introduced and a back story expands.   The whole time you’re jogging (or in my case stumbling) speed-ups are introduced to your pace by the appearance of zombies whom you need to outrun by increasing your pace.  The program tells you how close they are and a handy sonar type blip lets you know if they’re gaining or you are losing them.  A few minutes running is often enough to outpace them.

On your travels you also pick up random items such as medi-kits, food, clothing and so on all of which can be used later in the game.  What’s really nice about the app is you never have to touch it while you’re running.  It handles your inventory by itself.  The story and voice acting is good.  We’re not talking James Earl Jones but it’s good enough quality and very believable in the setting.   So far the story is interesting and enough mysterious events are introduced to make you want to find out what’s going to happen next.

Items you find in the game can be dropped to distract zombies if you’ve run out of puff and those you keep after you complete a episode can later be used to build and expand able station via a simple farmville type interface.

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There’s a number of extras outside of the episodes like a radio station that plays your music as tracks whilst inter spacing it with chat and events, challenges like running to a GPS point and back to recover supply drops and there’s a little bit of multi-player which I need to investigate.

So far it’s early days for me with this, but I’ll do another post on it when I’ve used it a bit more.

All in all I’m really enjoying it.  It’s clever.  The sounds of zombies closing in as you sprint is exhilarating and how the whole thing fits around your play list of music it very well done.  This is my first proper Augmented Reality (AR) game and it’s better than I expected.   I have high hopes for this whole area of entertainment.  It’s surprising how the brain is fooled into a slightly different reality just through the audio and on the first run I was nearly looking behind me to see if I was being pursued or expecting to see a building that was being described to me as being just around the next corner.   I struggle with running, it’s not something I’ve ever been really good at but I do see this as a big help with training.  More soon.

Now if you’ll excuse me a pack of zombies are closing in, I have to run

Huzzah!

Vic

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Thur Child is Full of Win – Part 1

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Why do we love zombies? There’s no denying that zombies are “in” at the moment. TV shows, movies (some of them good), games, books, marches, the real ones outside my window desperately trying to scratch through, calling me to join them in my sleep, we’ve all gone zombie mad!  But what is it about zombies that we really like? Is it that they’re just misunderstood old ragamuffins that need hugs (and brains) or that we love the idea of being a survivor in a world that’s had it’s reset button pressed?

I’ve no idea, nor could I care less 🙂

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I did however get to play Card of the Dead on Thur night thanks once again to our Polish connection and it’s good solid zombie fun.

Card of the Dead is a card game by AEG with fun cartoony artwork. It’s pure filler and plays out in fifteen or so minutes. It does have the potential to drag on since your move is often a choice between strengthening your own position or screwing someone else’s up. Wild guess which was the popular choice for our group (canned laughter)

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Players start with a hand of three from an initial pick of eight and during their turn they draw one card and play.  Draw a zombie and you place it in front of you. Draw too many and it’s goodnight zombieville.  Other cards allow you to remove zombies, more importantly move zombies to other players or generally cause them headaches.  Yet more cards have a foot symbol on them with a number.  Get enough of them in front of you and you get to escape leaving all the other players to their grizzly faith.

It’s fun it’s quick, it plays not unlike a whole lot of other filler card games.  The artwork is nice, the production quality good and it’s cheap as chips so if you’re bored of your current filler game and a fan of zombies (as if you weren’t) then you could do worse than this.  Will I rush out and buy it? Nope, I have a stack of fillers and don’t need more, but it’s certainly welcome at my table any time

More Thur to follow

Huzzah!

Vic

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MrSaturday Turns 40 – Part 3

I’ve meant to get back to (some of) the events that took place in Connemara to mark the passing of Mr Saturday from the foolish, loud, impetuous state of his 30s to the enlightened, wise and mellow 40s*.  I didn’t. I’m doing it now.

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Being a marathon session of gaming in the same way it was inevitable that Hunter S Thompson and Dr Gonzo would sooner or later get into the ether we would have to play a zombie game.  Zombicide the current favourite had been hot bunked all weekend.  It was mid to late weekend that we jumped on it.

I’ve played my fair share of zombie games, zombies, eh, other zombie games, you name it, I’ve probably played it, to date Zombicide is my favourite.  It captures the whole spirit of the zombie thing in the same way as the video game left4dead, it’s simple, it’s fast and above all it’s great fun.  (A buddy of mine plays it with his kids who believe that a chainsaws primary purpose is crowd control)

Now I haven’t exactly covered myself in glory with this game.  There was an incident on a Thur night were I may have made the classic horror mistake of going ahead on my own and drawing a lot of heat onto the group.  I did selflessly hide and let the hoard attack the main group before crawling out and whispering ‘sorry’ as the Zees chomped down on the surprised survivors.  It happens.  In my case quite a bit.  They say some people will freeze in a plane crash and some will crawl over others to get out, chances are I’d take the only parachute and jump just after I suggested they draw lots for it.

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Zombicide is a survival game in the classic genre.  The world is overrun with zombies, dogs and cats sleeping together, no coffee, basically the end of everything and your small group of six survivors have to

  1. Arm themselves
  2. Achieve some objective
  3. Get to the exit with a minimum of bite marks on their pasty bodies

Optionally allow your fellow survivors to die.  It’s not in the rules, I’m just saying

The rules are piddly simple. you can move a set number of spaces and along the way carry out some basic actions like, shoot, search, pass equipment to another survivor or carry out some action based on the equipment you have. After the group has moved All the zombies get to move towards the nosiest square and additional zombies spawn at defined spawn points around the board.

Noise is created by moving, breaking doors, shooting etc. and the zombie hoard gets added to based on the draw of zombie reinforcement cards.   Make no mistake it’s a HOARD of zombies and it’s never ending.  You need to get your business done as quickly as possible and get out of dodge.  Any delay or detour spells grizzle death for both you and your team.  More importantly you,

Each of the survivors are suitably different and some are inevitably clichéd.  The Cop, the Drifter, The Student, The Token and so on, but there are some novel ones in there like the pissed off office worker and the roller girl and a TON of ones you can download and purchase models for. Each of them start with different equipment and special abilities and each of them have different upgrade paths.

Ah yes upgrades.

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As you accumulate kills in a Gimli v Legolas manner, you will start to level up and acquire a choice of new abilities but here’s the rub, it also attracts more numerous and nastier zombies.  In the card above you can see how our hapless survivor goes from blue to red to orange and then maxes out in red.  The colour indicates what section of the reinforement card to read from, blue being ok-ish and red being very bad indeed. Worse still the spawn rate of the zombies is determined by the highest level character in the group so as soon as one character gets into a higher level it opens a can of whoop ass for all the team.

The zombies aren’t all just shamblers, there’s fast moving zombies, replete with jogging suits, fatties that are tougher to kill and worst of all abominations that are the McBain of zombietown.  So as I said get in, get your objectives and get the heck out of there as if your life depended on it. ho ho.

So how did it go at MrSaturday’s event? Well not as planned would be a kind way of putting it.  The objective was to get to thirty kills which I obviously took as a challenge that included the caveat of “before anyone else”. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t implicit in the rules but it was real for me.  I was allowed the first turn to which I jumped into a nearby police car, drove straight through my team knocking some aside and wounding others and proceeded to do doughnuts around the central building knocking over zombies and well, I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for the haters in my team who working together (for shame) ran out jumped on the bonnet of a nearby car as I screamed by, shot me dead then continued the game without me…. I had a long but not unpleasant wait for the game to end

Zombicide is a cracker of a game, I highly recommend it.  There are a ton of additional scenarios and some very nice extra characters that can be acquired.  Snake Pliskin anyone?  On top of that there’s already a couple of expansions for it set in a shopping centre and a prison and lots of mini expansions.  If you’re a zombie fan then this is where it’s currently at with zombies games.  Look no further

Huzzah!

Vic

 

 

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