Monday, September 23, 2019

Dreadtober 2019!

Just a quick hit today - It's almost that time of year, the temperature is dropping, the leaves are changing and the Tech Priests are awakening their charges from their long slumber!

That's right - It's time for Dreadtober! Head on over to for details, I'll be collating folks efforts over the month of October and have a place for everyone's favorite big stompy death machines to show off!

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Necromunda - Downhive Dispatch #5: Down Among The Dead Men

Over the last few sessions, The Down and Out In Dust Falls campaign was showing the cracks in the rules we were using, so we agreed to wrap it up at session five with the dramatic finale scenario "Down Among The Dead Men".  Over the course of the campaign there was a growing influx of plague zombies, and the trickle has become a flood! Down in the depths of the Abyss, Karloth Valois  and his hordes were stirring and the time had come for him to rise up and destroy Dust Falls!

The scene opened at the precinct house of the local Enforcers, where several gangers had been locked up in the iso-cubes for various infractions the previous evening. A pair of enforcers released the gangers, explaining there was another plague zombie incursion and in exchange for help dealing with the infestation, their misdemeanors would be overlooked.

Unbeknownst to the gangers and enforcers, Karloth Valois himself was already walking the streets of Dust Falls! Represented by a handful of 'blips', only once a ganger laid eyes on one of the objective markers would it be revealed whether it was the zombie master or merely a distraction...

The Enforcers led the way out of the precinct house, instructing the fastest of the ex-prisoners to reach the broadcast tower atop the blockhouse to call for reinforcements.

Without fear, the Enforcers strode out to meet the slavering menace...

Full of confidence, the pathetic zeds stood no chance against the mailed fist of Lord Helmawr.


...Well, perhaps not. With a scream and some rather unpleasant squelching noises, the two Enforcers were horribly devoured!

Each gang's reinforcements began to arrive, and the canny Van Saars technicians had managed to develop an anti-zombie concoction that, when added to the two atmospherics processors would stop their advances. The devices were heavy and awkward however, and required two gangers to carry if they wished to move at speed. An impromptu alliance was formed and the first of two canisters set off for the first processor.

Further reinforcments arrived, bearing the second canister, and a stronger defense began to come together.

No time to lose, as further zombies came shambling out of the darkness!

The first runner team encountered a bit of trouble on their way, but the forces of house Cawdor provided covering fire.

Ever more zombies arrived and began converging on the precinct house from the north!

A more active offense was decided upon, and the various gang reinforcments started to move out to strike down the incoming waves.

More teamwork between gangs that had been at each other's throats just days before, the durability of the shield-carrying Van Saar and the lethal swordplay of the Cawdor saw numerous zombies meet their end.

...Only to have their numbers replaced as another, larger wave of zombies appeared!

And another horde spewed forth from the depths to the east!

With the atmosphere processor nearly surrounded, it would take some fancy footwork and coordination for the canister team to make it through...

With the Cawdor Ambot finally kicked over into attack mode, the now-bolstered defenders moved out to defend the second runner team.

...While the first team juked left and then right, drawing some of the zombies away and opening a path to the processor.

Finally Karloth was revealed! The cry went up and many of the defenders began converging on his location, eager to fell the foul necromancer.

The Cawdor Ambot pounded forward, mincing and mashing zombies, and spraying viscera in all directions. The cult haruspex would later comment that the flung entrails showed the favor of the Emperor in their endeavor and it was at this point the tide turned against the forces of darkness. More grounded observers suggested that's generally what happens when a mining robot uses its tunneling claws on people.

On the eastern quadrant, the first runner team engaged in a full sprint, weaving their way through the slavering zombies...

...And in a last-ditch effort managed to deploy the device and feed the anti-toxin into the processor, which halted the endless flow of zombies.

However, their heroics would only be celebrated posthumously as the surrounding horde fell upon them in a grisly feast!

With the loss of reinforcements to the east, Karloth gathered his remaining forces for a last-ditch assault!

Which broke upon the stalwart defenses of the gangs! Volley fire and mechanical death tore into the ravening zombies, devastating their numbers.

Karloth Valois attempted to flee the whirring blades of the Ambot and the questing gunfire...

Only to find himself squarely in the crosshairs of a rad-cannon from across the table and finished off by the second runner team!

With that, the zombies reverted to their usual mindless selves and were easily dispatched, and the citizens of Dust Falls were safe once more! Of course, when the zombies had finally been put down and people began cleaning up the area, Karloth's body was nowhere to be found...

All in all it was a very successful campaign and we all had a blast! There was a bit of attrition which is to be expected, and there were definitely some rules tweaks that were discussed to make the next campaign even better! Speaking of, the first session of the Sump City Showdown begins next weekend, should be a good time!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Necromunda - Downhive Dispatch #4

More mayhem in the underhive! The fourth session had some schedule conflicts and as such we only had three players able to make it. As such we went with a couple narrative missions - There's been an ever-increasing surge of Plague Zombies showing up in Dust Falls over the last several sessions, and the 2nd Shift Linemen organized an assault on the hideout of P.T. Barnacle's Carnival of Wonder in a search for a potential cure or weapon to use against the shambling hordes, while the two Cawdor gangs decided to air their grievances and attempt to establish whether the Lectitio Divinitatus should be printed in a Serif or Sans Serif font.

I pulled out all the sloppy and slimy tiles and ginned up a hideout for the scavvy cavalcade of P.T. Barnacle, with a vault where the vial of mcguffinite is stored and stationed the disgusting horde here and there throughout, where they lay in wait for the Van Saars.


The high-tech ordnance of the 2nd Shift Linemen paved the way for the gangers as they delved ever deeper into the muck, with a few succumbing to the tender ministrations of the Scavvies. Luckily though none of them were captured or eaten and they managed to retrieve several containers of samples that the Van Saar chemists would be able to synthesize into a weapon to fend off the incipient zombie plague.


On the other table, The Light of the Emperor's Benediction and the congregation of Meticulosa Nomen clashed near one of the downhive Schola Progenium, where they battled it out over the souls of the juves (and future congregants).


Both gangs deployed along the catwalks and took cover among the rubble, cat-calling and sniping at each other across the playground.


Eventually the forces of Good(?) triumphed over the forces of Evil(?) though when the dust settled nobody really seemed to know which gang was the victor. "All them Cawdor nutjobs look alike ta' me." claimed one onlooker, once the flames had died down. In the end, the merry-go-round was deemed heretical and the smoldering ruins were left as a warning to all. What that warning may be is still up for debate.

Next up, the dramatic conclusion of the campaign as the zombie hordes pour forth from the Abyss!

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Necromunda - Downhive Dispatch #3, CARNIVALE!

More than a bit behind schedule, there were a number of pict-captures of the events in Dust Falls that took a while to sort through and update. Rather than dump them all in one giant slosh of pictures, I'm going to break it out by session. Per the Dominion Campaign rules, it's suggested that at the midpoint of the campaign to do a special scenarios day to give people a break from the norm. We went with the conceit that every few cycles there is a celebration day in the underhive known as Carnivale where the various gangs put aside their differences for a few days and celebrate with various feats of skill, speed and strength. I'd ginned up a couple themed tables and let the players have at it!

First up was the Rust Town Run, in which two gangs took it in turn to make their way through a dangerous maze in an attempt to make it to the vault and retrieve the prize - A Chrono-Chrystal worth a huge sum of credits!

The initial setup was based on the scenario The Gauntlet and I'd laminated some copies of all the various special effects the tiles provided, which did make things easier for everyone to remember what did what as they made their way through the hazards.


While the theory was sound, the way we ended up running it meant the defenders had a huge advantage and only one of the attackers made it to the vault. Some tweaks will definitely need to be made to ensure it's a fun and somewhat more balanced scenario.


All told this particular event had the most issues, though the players all gave it a go and could see a glimmer of goodness to be had in it. I will definitely be running a new Gauntlet series in the future, based on some excellent suggestions from the players which should make it more fun for all parties involved (which is the point, in the end)!

The second table was much more well received - A game of Lord of the Spire, wherein multiple gangs send a pair of contestants to race to the top of a massive structure, with the teams with gangers on the hightest level gaining points each turn until someone reaches the very top and hits the buzzer. Of course, as is the case they have a tendency to shoot at each other on the way up as well...


I pulled out almost all of my plastic bulkheads and set about building a thirteen story tower of terror! As precarious and rickety as it looked, it actually was surprisingly solid. Granted, there was a liberal use of alligator clips clamping everything together...


I was rather pleased to see that the building itself was taller than some of the participants, and there was a fair bit of standing on tippy-toes to get at the upper floors. The battle raged in the lower levels while some of the faster gangers raced for the top!


There were quite a few folks knocked off ledges and a fair bit of plummeting all around, which always elicited a cheer from the players. All in all the Lord of the Spire scenario was a rousing success!

Of course, the real centerpiece event for the session was the unveiling of the THUNDERCUBE!!! (which must at all times be in all-caps).

Overseen by Count Enrique Horatio Amador DeMonet, Guilder Exchequer and Trade Envoy for the Dust Falls Financial Underdistrict, THUNDERCUBE saw a field of hardened pit slaves fighting for the entertainment of all.


The rounds were punishingly brutal, bloody and short. The field of eight pit slaves were whittled down to four, then two...


...With the final two victors pairing off against a legend of the underhive, the pit slave champion Bull Gorg! Even the two hardened killers teaming up stood no chance against the behemoth's twin turbo-chainswords and the crowd roared as Bull Gorg made short work of the erstwhile champions.

All in all it was a very enjoyable session, and made for a great break between the first and second halves of the campaign. I'll be doing something similar for the upcoming Sump City Showdown campaign, giving the players a chance to have some fun themed multiplayer games!