|BRIGADIER LETHBRIDGE-STEWART AND DOCTOR JOHN SMITH FACE THE CYBER CONTROLLER|
This game of “ZombieTV” takes place upon my usual 2x2 gaming board which has been populated with a smattering of trees, through the centre of which runs a snaking road. At the north end of the road is a broken down truck and at the south are some fuel drums. This lay-out replicates that advised by the set up for the scenario “Break Down” in the “ZombieTV” skirmish spin-off rule book by “Crooked Dice Game Design Studio”. The survivors have to get to the gas, bring it back to the truck and then escape in the vehicle. We selected this scenario in order to get reacquainted with the variant “7TV” rules “ZombieTV” brings with it, and thought it would provide us with an excellent storyline with which to use some long-neglected models by “Crooked Dice” and “Black Tree Design”.
“The story so far… Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart and his UNIT scientific advisor, Doctor John Smith, are travelling back from some underground cave investigations at Wenley Moor, when they hear a Cyberforce has landed nearby and an invasion started. Eager to return to UNIT Headquarters and evade the attack, UNIT driver Gwyn Evans forgets to stop at a fuel depot en route and their truck grinds to a halt in the middle of nowhere. Fortunately some abandoned petrol barrels were seen just a mile back down the road, so the three UNIT members decide to disembark and collect them. But with Cybermen and Cybermats now roaming the countryside it isn’t just a simply matter of walking back, and there’s also a Cyber Controller to think about…”
|THE TABLETOP - A SIMPLE ROAD WITH SOME TREES EITHER SIDE|
All of the models were placed in their respective deployment zones as per the Episode’s set up. A number of House Rules were agreed in order to allow the Brain Survivor, Doctor Smith, to better represent the skills of Doctor Who; so his character was awarded the special effects Boffin and Gadgets – both of which aren’t ordinarily allowed in “ZombieTV”.
As several weapons were also drawn as part of the Prologue’s Scavenger rules, this meant a number of pieces of equipment were shared out amongst the three men. Of note, Driver Evans was handed a useful one-shot miniature laser by his scientific advisor, the Brigadier grabbed a fire-axe from the truck, and the Doctor packed away a handy Matter Reducer ‘an old friend’ had once lent him.
|TERRIFIED - DRIVER EVANS RUNS FOR HIS LIFE STRAIGHT INTO THE CYBERMEN|
Turn One saw the first of the “ZombieTV” Event Cards being played “Desperate Last Stand”. This caused Driver Evans, terrified at being ordered to remain and guard the truck, to rush west along the northern edge of the table, into the woods and towards three approaching Cybermen. Petrified the UNIT soldier was allowed to chance one shot from his high calibre rifle and he didn’t miss. A silver giant fell to the ground without a head – these alterations the Doctor had made to UNIT’s standard rifles were marvellous. Meanwhile to the east the scientific advisor spotted three fast-moving Cybermats scurrying from out the trees – doubtless attracted by the noise of Evans’ rifle. Swiftly he turned his sonic screwdriver towards one of the metal monsters but it was out of range. With a “Splendid fellow” the Brigadier jogged past the Doctor heading south down the road towards the fuel.
|COWARD COMES GOOD - EVANS DEACTIVATES A CYBERMAN AS THE CYBERMATS APPROACH|
Turn Two saw the military officer suddenly collapse in a “Dead Faint” as his current twenty-four duty took its toll on the old soldier. Aghast the Doctor turned to see the Cybermats were now pouring out from the north-eastern woods towards them and Cybermen were stamping out from some foliage to the west. Evans, retreating back to the UNIT truck discharged the Doctor’s gift, and his miniature laser stopped another Cyberman. Only this one was simply deactivated and could shudder back to life again at a moment’s notice. Fortunately Lethbridge-Stewart gave a groan and got back to his feet… just as the silver giant Evans had just hit also began moving again.
|GET IN FRONT OF ME MY GOOD CHAP - THE BRIGADIER PROTECTS HIS SCIENTIFIC ADVISOR|
In order to ensure the UNIT staff had the Initiative for the third turn, the Brigadier used his Star Quality, “Last Man On Earth”, to automatically give it to them. As a result the soldier marched briskly south down the road and shot a Cybermat. The bullet deactivated the robo rodent but attracted the attention of three more, who trundled towards him. Driver Evans, returning to the truck he was ordered to protect, deactivated another Cybermat with his rifle. But the high calibre weapon was quickly attracting the attention of the Cyber insects. Meanwhile the Doctor ran up behind the Brigadier and set his sights on running down the road after the petrol. But Cybermen were now appearing from amongst the trees all over the place; especially from the south-western woods. Though the main problem was the swarm of 5-6 Cybermats heading from the east and already scuttling across the road’s surface.
|CYBERMEN ARISE - EVANS CLUBS ONE SILVER GIANT BUT MORE APPEAR|
To make matters worse for UNIT, the event “The Restless Dead” caused a Cyberman to rise up out of the ground just behind the main Cybermat pack at the start of Turn Four. Another of the silver giants reached Evans, but the driver dodged the attack. From the western wood a Cyberman was fast approaching the Doctor. Whilst the Cybermats finally closed in on the Brigadier, one snapping at his feet but missing. Driver Evans managed to club the Cyberman grabbing at him and with a stroke of Luck did enough damage to the alien’s head to bring it to the ground for good. Using a shot of scavenged adrenalin he then placed the Cyberman about to attack the Doctor in his rifle’s sights and squeezed the trigger. The weapon jammed!!! Meanwhile Lethbridge-Stewart, Cybermats worrying his feet already caught sight of more of the tiny cyborgs racing to his position and pulled out the fire-axe. He chopped one but despite a Heroic Surge failed to hit any more of the fast-moving robo rodents. Doctor Smith, spun to confront the Cyberman about to apply a devastating karate chop to the Timelord’s neck, and fired off his Matter Reducer… He looked down at the small robot at his feet. It looked like a child’s toy.
|DE-MATERIALIZING DOCTOR - AS THE CYBERMATS SWARM THE BRIGADIER, DOCTOR SMITH ESCAPES|
Turn Five saw the Brigadier give a “Stirring Speech” which saw Driver Evans unjam his rifle and move towards his inspiring Leader. The Doctor managed to deactivate another Cybermat with his sonic screwdriver before disappearing into the western wood saying “I’ll be back in a moment old chap.” However Lethbridge-Stewart was too busy fending off the attacks of three Cybermats to respond.
|THE CYBER CONTROLLER APPEARS TO WITNESS THE BRIGADIER'S DEMISE?|
Turn Six began by the Brigadier deactivating another Cybermat with his trusty fire-axe and the Doctor used the distraction to run even further south behind the western woods, down towards the petrol stash. He would have to be quick however as the Cybermats were now swarming around UNIT’s Commanding Officer, and they were finally under the specific leadership of the newly arrived Cyber Controller…
Dum Da Dum, Diddly Dum, Oo-ee-oos…
With Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart about to be submerged beneath a wave of Cybermats, and the Cyber Controller having finally arrived to personally lead his Cyber Forces, things did not look too good for UNIT and its scientific advisor. However at this point, as we called it a night, the military organisation technically still had 7 victory points and the Cyber Force had 0 victory points. Giving Doctor John Smith and his UNIT friends a momentary moral victory... at least until we play Part Two...