Monday, July 25, 2016

Pulp Alley Scenario - A Vampires Bloody Heart AAR

This game had the Major Plot was Vlad Senior all the other Vampires were Minor Plots, the objectives, get their rotten beating hearts.  Yes, normally a stake through the heart is what is lore requires to kill a vampire, however the script writer in this instant has asked for the beating hearts.  Perhaps he has some sinister plan for them at some later point in time?

Against Lord Wishart are the seasoned Vampire Hunting Team plucked from the pages of literature, just to annoy Vlad Junior, who wailed pitilessly at the breach of copyright and demanded damages and a lawyer of which Lord Goldaming produced a card for services of Johnathan Harker. But I digress below are pictures of the Vampire Hunter League.

A Story...

The hapless motor vehicle came to a juddering halt in the badly maintained road.  All the passengers bar one looked with trepidation at the uninviting village.  Cold shivers ran down their spines.

"I guess we should go in then?" ventured Niles, his voice quivering slightly in apprehension.

"W w w w well I suppose this looks like the place, I suppose we could drive on and try the next village just in case." Postulated Eberhard hopefully.

Lord Wishart drained the last of his tea, handed his cup to Jabari indicating another cupful while reaching for the car door handle.

The light from the full moon shone brightly into Ackerley's face as he searched for where the unfamiliar door handle was on this make of car.  Just as he found it, and as Jabari prepared to hand him his fresh cup of tea a shadow crossed the moon light and the car door was swung open.  A lisping voice greeting him in passable English.

"Good evening, marthterths. Welcome to Spurtenpurgen, I'm Igor."

The Hunters on their way into the heart of Spurtenpurgen.

Ackerley calming walked across the village greens towards the nearest cottage.  As he neared the homely cottage he spied a scantily clad lady with enormous assets appearing to have difficulty getting into her lodgings.  They must still have outdoor privies here he thought, she's locked herself out. A slight stirring occurred... in his cup of tea as his drew in his breath to say a greeting.  It was drowned out however by the booming shot of Eberhard's gun. He was equally dismayed to see the woman go down first with a hole through her guts, then as she casually got back up with a demonic rage upon her visage as she faced her long overdue judgement.  Oh well thought Ackerley, all that glitters is not gold...

Turn One - The scene is set for the mayhem to follow.

I was promised a Literary Agent, where is one!  The Hunters dispatch the deluded Vlad Junior.

Nail that vampire.  Shoot that silly bugger stupid enough to carry a light in the dark.

Hunters make the best of the open terrain and have sprinted for the Major Plot.

Ackerley left to search for a very difficult heart.

No Jabari just stumbled for the camera that's all.

Lady Goldaming has grabbed the Main Plot and done a runner.

Jabari and his wonderous deadly Peruvian Moths.

Niles goes down to some bad luck.

"Jabari I'm out of tea"

Concentrated gunfire gets them in the end, pity one of them got away... the one with the plot!

There goes the one with the plot legging it!

Look you wouldn't hit a man with a cup of tea would you... oh you would would you!
Look over your shoulder and at the frame below and see my two chums coming to back me up, still want to hit me...
oh... you still do!

End of the game!
Sigh, luck or lack of it.  That seems to be what cruels me with just about any game I play.  I lost out on the better deployment side.  Ok ok I'll stop whinging, call it an old man prerogative.  Poor old Ackerley lost again, I'm beginning to get used to this.  If it weren't for the highly entertaining stories I can weave out of the whole adventure I think I would be thoroughly depressed.

Vlad Senior - Major Plot - +1 Gear
Vlad Junior - Minor Plor - + 1 Backup

Lord Wishart
First Bride - Minor Plot - +1 Tip
Second Bride - Minor Bride - +1 Gear and +1 Backup

A Story...

What a night thought Ackerley.  Full of excitment and half naked women, just wait till he got home and told the lads at the Club about it.  Damn, there was that stirring... in his tea again.

"Marthterth, I haff tended to efferyone."

Ackerley looked at the odd man and dearly wished he hadn't.  

"Ah, yes, thank you Igor.  You say the villagers will be back shortly?"

"Yes marthterth"

The sounds of many motor vehicles could be distantly heard coming up the single roadway.  The lights crazily lighting the distant countryside with bizarre images that enhanced an already heighten imagination.

Garfield approached Ackerley quickly while glancing at the collateral damage the village buildings had suffered during the brief yet violent encounter between opponents and monsters.

"Ackers old man - I think," and at this he point out to Ackerley the shot out windows of the nearby cottage, "the locals might be wanting payment for this.  I don't know about you but I'm just a bit short at the moment."

Ackerley suddenly looked very attentive, realising that he'd have to pay for something.

"Right, quick chaps!  Into the car, off we go.  Leave the other lot to explain things."  Turning to Igor he shook his hand, "Lovely to meet you, say hello to your marthterth, I mean master. Toodles," and with that he lept into the car which then sped off at speed past the approaching convoy, which had to swerve to allow passage.  There was plenty horn blowing and shouting of abuse.

Meanwhile in a darkened and safe location Vlad the Elder watched and plotted...

Friday, July 22, 2016

Pulp Alley - Vampires: The Blood Runs Cold

From the hot and steamy jungles of Africa to the cold and damp climes of eastern Europe.  Poor old Lord Wishart has offended the Foreign Office and been sent to investigate the rumours that blood sucking fiends have risen again in Europe.  No not in Brussels that's not for another half century, so clearly Lord Wishart failed to nail the bastards here and now in the past.  Or is this another incarnation of another evil that has arisen?  Who knows, who cares!

The silent village of Spurtenpurgen
The above is the ominous and silent village of Spurtenpurgen.  Where are the villages?  Have they fallen prey to the menace of the vampire(s) rumoured to be preying in the area?  Are the villages just simple farm folk that have retired early to bed exhausted from a hard days work?  Or did the villagers go to the local festival 30 miles away to enjoy themselves on wine, women (or whatever fancy) and song, thereby escaping the vampires by pure chance!  Yes, you are correct, it was the last option, no one expects the lest obvious explanation for a deserted village... all good horror stories expect the peasants to be cowering behinds uselessly locked doors, waiting to be butchered...

So who are the dastardly villains this time around?

Vlad Senior
"Welcome to my house. Come freely. Go safely: and leave something of the happiness you bring." 
Dracula. Bram Stoker.
Vlad Senior
The master, the mover and shaker of this family of vampires.  Only a century out of date when it comes to knowledge of the coming and goings of the world he does not know about motor vehicles, aeroplanes and the telephone.  He was masterful at the turn of the 18th century, now come the 20th he's rather dated.  Well if all else fails, fall back on the old ways, terrorise and dominate, it always worked in the past!

"I learned to GIVE not because I have much but because I know exactly how it feels to have NOTHING." 
Dracula. Bram Stoker.
Vlad Junior
Vlad the younger or Junior as he is loathed being called last walked the earth when a mortal Bram Stoker took pen to paper and wrote a dreadful novel about him.  Vlad is driven to set the record straight and prove Stoker as the poor literary hack he was and publish his own autobiography.  He's out with his family feeding and building strength as Vlad Senior desires, secretly though he's searching for a Literary Agent to launch his career.  Good luck with that though, this is eastern Europe!

"If ever a look meant death - if looks could kill - we saw it at that moment." 
Dracula. Bram Stoker.
Vlad Elder
The Elder has been around for some time, he thinks since the 17th century but he's not to sure?  He's extremely emaciated and complains that he needs to sleep.  Actually complain is all he ever does, virgin blood doesn't taste like is used to, actually he complains a lot about the lack of virgins more than anything, something about the lack of moral integrity in today's young people and how in his day....  Needless to say the family keep him in his coffin and asleep as often as they can, releasing him only when he is required.  For when he is roused he is truly a demon from the pits of hell.

"How blessed are some people,whose lives have no fears, no dreads: to whom sleep is a blessing that comes nightly, and brings nothing but sweet dreams."  
Bram Stoker.
First Bride
Her name is long forgotten, her beauty marred by the evil which now mars her soul to the core.  She baths in the blood of those she slaughters in the name of her husband(s), she's truly forgotten if it's Elder, Senior or Junior so addled is her sanity.  It is soon to be a turning point were one of the Vlads will need to put her down as she drains her victims to the point of turning them into another vampire.  This infuriates the Vlad's who in turn have to destroy the creature, but have yet to destroy the bride.  Time will tell when the bell tolls for thee....

"To us forever are the gates of heaven shut; for who shall open them to us again? We go on for all time abhorred by all; a blot on the face of God's sunshine; an arrow in the side of him who died for man."
Dracula. Bram Stoker.
Second Bride
Drusilla is a schemer, she has been manipulating the First's blood lust and madness to a point were she will have to be destroyed for the safety of the family.  She knows that Senior will protect her, he knows she is his favourite, she just has to play her cards right and all will go as planned.

A Story...

The motor vehicle Niles had hired backfired noisely, shuddered, even threatened to stop all while bouncing and jumping along what the people in this part of Europe called a road.

"Do you think we're on the right road Batty?" enquired Niles as he peered through the gloom.  Why did they always arrive at such desolate places at dusk?  It was almost as if some script writer were actively seeking their demise, whatever happened to an early morning arrival for once.

"Well I think so Niles? We could have asked that convoy of villagers passing us not long ago, but.... no one speaks the lingo.  Should of thought of that before we came here.  Eberhard says that while he can speak most native languages he doesn't know a word of dago!"

Batty smiled to himself "I did like the tune they were singing.  Reminded me as if they were off to a football match." To which he then couldn't get out of his head the tune 'ere we go, 'ere we go, 'ere we go!

Onward the badly tuned and mechanically maintained motor vehicle spluttered, then just as the sun was about to set the village of Spurtenpurgen came into sight.  The village was virtually without lights, oh there were some lights in view, a light over a door way, from a crack in a curtain.  Yet there were no street lights, no public lighting of any sort.  It was ominously and frightfully quiet.

A wolf howled in the night and everyone's neck hairs rose...

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Pulp Alley Scenario - Greystoke Undertaking a Spell AAR

The ladies of the Association went on holidays to Brighton rather than dare the horrible swamps of Darkest Africa.  My sparing partner Glen was able to make the trip today and brought along his "secret" League he had been working on.  He surprised me - he had his own Tarzan League.  So what was I to do seeing what I had plotted and planned with the story.  Never fear my ever fertile if senile mind came up with an ingenious twist!

Meet Glen and Skully our Initiative "token", this happy token was passed between us to denote who had the upper hand.
A Story...

Several hours earlier in a remote and dingy cave Onyekachi looked up from the scrying surface of congealed blood, the human sacrifice already cooling despite the hot temperatures given off by the lava pits nearby.  So Tarzan was trying to interfere in his plans to bring mighty and dread Obba'hah'ma back into this world, he would see about that.  Scooping up a handful of congealed blood he hurled it into a nearby lava pit while intoning an incantation.

The bloody smoke that rose from the pit showed the location of Raziya, one of his four chosen acolytes.  She was preparing something over a large iron pot, her bloody hands constantly adding portions of quivering flesh from out of sight.

"Raziya!" commanded Onyekachi, "Stop. Listen, Obey!"

The image of Raziya jumped, clearly startled and surprised by the call out of nowhere.  The mystery of what she was preparing became apparent as some hapless tribesman's lifeless body dropped to the floor.  She looked around but could clearly not guess the source of Onyekachi's voice.

"Raziya, do not tax yourself as to where I am, only that I am able to see and communicate with you.  Obey me, or be punished!  Bow in servitude or be destroyed!"

Raziya's face showed fear and without hesitation showed her fealty to her master by bowing in servitude.  Not daring to raise her head until told to do so, her body trembled in fear at his mastery of magic.

"Good Raziya.  I am pleased with your service, you will be greatly rewarded for you swift toadying.  For today though I need you to use your special powers on Tarzan, and quickly.  He has sent a party of white men to interfere in our plans for tonight in raising dread Obba'hah'ma.  You will now find at your feet the Powder of Compulsion, use it to compel Tarzan to defeat these white men and protect our summoning.  No GO!"

With those final words the image vanished with the smoked and Onyekachi was left in the ruddy light of the lava pit, the eerie light casting a more than sinister cast to his visage.

Corrupted Tarzen League

Corrupt Tarzen

Amy the Gorilla

Tic, Tac, and Toe

This was indeed a another game of differences.  Glen will supply me his League details eventually but his animal followers were delightful, the fact that no one could shoot was I thought going to be very one sided.  How very silly of me to think so.  As you will see from the report and pictures that follow.

WARNING: Picture quality poor, sorry!

Tarzan and Garfield vie for the Major Plot.

Ackerley and Jabari combine forces to get a Minor Plot.

How things were looking from above.  Amy the gorilla leading the monkeys still the arrive.

Amy obtains the Minor Plot.  The monkeys continue to play in the long grass.

Barrington starts to get a bad feeling about the contingent of monkeys heading his way.

Barrington definitely the center of attention.  Monkeys everywhere, but he's managed to hold them off in the end.
Barrington loaded another shell into his elephant gun and whistled a happy tune.  God it was good to be alive, it was a target rich environment.  Just then he spotted a blur of fur, then another spot, then another, damn it all, how many were there.  He snapped of a shot at the first monkey as it barrelled into him, but its speed and dexterity or was it just it's damnable luck that saved it.  As he reflexively reached to reload another monkey appeared then another followed by yet another, just how many of these creatures did Tarzan have at his beck and call.  Damned, they weren't doing him much harm, but he sure as hell wasn't doing much to them either.  Yet their numbers were going to tell if he didn't do something soon... thank heavens for a fortune card!

Sir Garfield comes to Barringtons rescue, but so does Amy come to the rescue of the monkeys.

Tarzan hands off his plot to Cheetah.

Looks like it takes two Englishmen to solve Minor Plots these days!

Barrington has managed to extricate himself from the monkey dilemma only for Sir Garfield to be confounded by a similar problem.  This time there is an angry gorilla thrown into the mix.
Sir Garfield grimaced in chagrin as he thought of how narrow an escape Barrington had just had from the monkeys.  He found that he was now in the same situation except he now had to deal with an enraged gorilla no less.  Hope though did seem possible as he saw out of the corner of his eye Jabari sneaking towards the encounter desperately trying to keep his hat on.  If Jabari could release those deadly killer Peruvian moths at just the right time the tide of battle could be turned... he hoped!

Faithful Jabari runs in and aids his companion, successfully surviving a round.  He then manages to unleash his Swarm taking out a follower.  Jabari is very happy.

Tarzan comes back into the fray to stop Pike from chasing down Cheetah with the Plots.  Garfield goes down but not out.  Jabari's amazing swarm of deadly killer Peruvian moths have accounted for two animal followers.

End of game.
I do apologise for the quality of the photo's.  I used a compression option on the Picture Tools manager and it seems to have totally stuffed up the resolution.  Of course I didn't think to keep a copy before fiddling with my pictures, will know better next time.

Right then Lord Wishart lost this battle, but it all came down to just bad luck.  I could have on the second turn have easily made the two success's needed to win the major plot then scampered for safety like Tarzan did and palm off the plot to a subordinate.  It really was a close one.  Yes my luck was abysmal in places but then it shone through in the two cases where both Barrington and Sir Garfield were swamped by monkeys.  To have survived for so many turns, to escape and succumb (Barrington) at the end was what games are made of.

Lord Wishart
Minor Plot - "Rise and worship me!" +1 Gear
Minor Plot - "Pick their bones clean!"+1 Tip

Major Plot - "Kill the pale ones!" +1 Experince
Minor Plot - "Behold the crystal skull!" +1 Contact

A Story...

"Tarzan, wake up old man, what's wrong with you?" 

Ackerley Wishart gave John Clayton a right royal kick to his backside, obtaining a groan from him.  Clayton or Tarzan rolled over and vomited copious green fluids onto the ground.

"I don't think that's at all natural Ackers?" said Sir Garfield with concern as he hurried to Tarzans side.  Offering him his canteen of water, only realising after Tarzan had guzzled a quantity and coughed in a startled manner that he'd given him his special spirits canteen.  Well he supposed, it would perk up ones spirits one way or the other he surmised.

Tarzan growled "I've been bewitched Wishart, and I will have my revenge on the black hearted villians who did this to me.  No one compels me against my will, no one.  I was helpless man, to be trapped inside and made to act you was an act of such betrayal.  I hope that you can find some way to forgive me for this breech of trust."

Ackerley looked into Tarzans eyes and saw the hurt and anguish that resided there.  

"Of course I forgive you Tarzan.  You've just been out in the sun a little too long, heat stroke.  I've seen it in the best of men, they all loose it.  What was that song your pal Noel was penning the other day Niles, something about mad dogs and englishmen?"

Niles looked up excitedly "why yes Ackers I have commited it to memory, would you like to hear it?"

"Oh, why not, the author appears to have run out of dialogue for us at the moment so he'll leave us with this ditty, so till next time...." 

Mad Dogs and Englishmen
(Noel Coward)

In tropical climes there are certain times of day
When all the citizens retire,
     to tear their clothes off and perspire.
It's one of those rules that the biggest fools obey,
Because the sun is much too sultry and one must avoid
     its ultry-violet ray --
Papalaka-papalaka-papalaka-boo. (Repeat)
Digariga-digariga-digariga-doo. (Repeat)
The natives grieve when the white men leave their huts,
Because they're obviously, absolutely nuts --

Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.
The Japanese don't care to, the Chinese wouldn't dare to,
Hindus and Argentines sleep firmly from twelve to one,
But Englishmen detest a siesta,
In the Philippines there are lovely screens,
     to protect you from the glare,
In the Malay states there are hats like plates,
     which the Britishers won't wear,
At twelve noon the natives swoon, and
     no further work is done -
But Mad Dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

It's such a surprise for the Eastern eyes to see,
That though the British are effete,
     they're quite impervious to heat,
When the white man rides, every native hides in glee,
Because the simple creatures hope he will
     impale his solar topee on a tree.
Bolyboly-bolyboly-bolyboly-baa. (Repeat)
Habaninny-habaninny-habaninny-haa. (Repeat)
It seems such a shame that when the English claim the earth
That they give rise to such hilarity and mirth -

Mad Dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.
The toughest Burmese bandit can never understand it.
In Rangoon the heat of noon is just what the natives shun.
They put their scotch or rye down, and lie down.
In the jungle town where the sun beats down,
     to the rage of man or beast,
The English garb of the English sahib merely gets a bit more creased.
In Bangkok, at twelve o'clock, they foam at the mouth and run,
But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

Mad Dogs and Englishmen, go out in the midday sun.
The smallest Malay rabbit deplores this stupid habit.
In Hong Kong, they strike a gong, and fire off a noonday gun.
To reprimand each inmate, who's in late.
In the mangrove swamps where the python romps
     there is peace from twelve till two.
Even caribous lie down and snooze, for there's nothing else to do.
In Bengal, to move at all, is seldom if ever done,
But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

Here is the music video so that you can get the gist of how it goes!

Thanks for reading, I hope you enjoy.


Who Do you Voo Doo?

So the trek into Darkest Africa continues as Tarzan "flees" the limp wrist of the Foreign Office.  However in his trek into the deeper and darkest parts he finds the moist part of an unpleasant evil cult of dark magicians.  Enlisting the ever enthusiastic services of Lord Wishart he heads off to thwart the dark machinations of evil.  But where is that nefarious Lady Shtop-Pitt?

The Swamp of Ja'Dar and the ominous standing stones that will summon the dreaded Obba'hah'ma. 
A Story...

Garfield kicked a loose stone along the game trail watching it kick up tiny puffs of dust as it hit the dirt. Damn that Ackers was always too keen to accept the plights of others before considering the needs of others.  Didn't he realise it almost summer back home and the cricket season was about to start.  The Australians were coming over to England and he was looking forward to a dashed good test match series.  The last time he had seen them play it was four drawn matches, with England finally getting the one win for the series on home soil*.  England had then won the next series when they played the following year in Australia, but Ackers had dragged him off to Timbuktu at the time searching for the Golden Frog.  This time he hoped things would be decided quickly and allow him to head home for a quiet sleep on a deck chair while watching the cricket.

"Garfield old boy! I think those might be these perilous stones Tarzan spoke about."

Lord Ackerley Wishart as per his wont was diligently sipping daintily from his best china tea cup while avoiding every peril nature threw in his path.  Moisture beading from his luxuriant moustache, though whether that was from the perspiration or from the tea one could not be sure.  His eyes, bright and filled with adventure took in the surroundings, analysing the situation and determining that there was clearly nothing there that would worry an Englishman.

The worrisome glowing stones of evil nature clearly did not register as something to be bothered about.  The fact that they had been placed in a mystical alignment, had been smeared with blood and body parts, also failed to raise any red flags with Lord Wishart.  To him it was just another part of the African jungle, another example of the brutal existence and native savagery.  Nothing to be worried about.  

"Right lads!  Tarzan wants us to scatter this lot of mumbo jumbos and send them packing.  Take away their je-jaws, I'm sure the British Museum will pay us a tidy sum to display them, certainly pay expense for the trip.  Afterwards, Jabari can wash those stones down with bleach, and all will be good!  Lets at them."

Jabari looked aghast at the sight of the massive standing stones and the one small bottle of bleach he brought with him.  Clearly it was not going to be his day...

*1926: 26th Series, Held in England, Started 12th June 1926, 5 Test Matches, 4 Draws, 1 Win for England, Series win for England, Ashes Retained by England.

Major Plot

Onyekachi (God is the Greatest)
"Kill the pale ones!" - Sacred snake totem
Onyekachi (God is the Greatest)
Onyekachi is the brains of this cable of this darkest and blackest of magicians hell bent on raising a long lost deity from the murky depths of the dismal swamp of Ja'dar.  Having found and stolen the sacred snake from the Miskatonic Museum in Arkham under the disguise of visiting Professor Oren Kach.  With the aid of the other four magicians he will raise dread Obba'hah'ma, deity of division and impotency.  With it's aid he will bring mighty empires to ruin and allow anarchy to reign supreme.

Objective: Destroy the sacred snake totem.

Minor Plot

Wekesa (Harvest Child)

"Pick their bones clean!" - Ivory thigh bone
Wekesa (Harvest Child)
A crotchety old man rumoured to be Onyekachi's father.  The skull upon his staff is that of his father and it whispers to him the spells and secrets that will allow him to master the many mysteries of the mysterious.  Either that or he's been inhaling too many powders blown his way from Raziya's enchanting "kiss".  Nevertheless Wekessa is a devious old man more than capable of dealing with the demons that inhabit the planes of the other worlds.

Objective: Destroy the ivory thigh bone.

Raziya (Nice, pleasant)
"Give us a kiss handsome." - Magical dust
Raziya (Nice, pleasant)
Every dark cult has it's raunchy side and this is the side that should be well and truly hidden!  Raziya is as old as Wekesa and she is his first of eight wives.  She rules the harem and tribe with an iron pot, anyone who objects - goes into the pot, solving any problems as well as any hunger issues.  She is the mistress of potions and mystical powders; she is also the randiest woman in the tribe, with those who reject her advances either submitting to her magical kiss or ending up in the pot.

Objective: Destroy the magical dust.

Tuma (Everlasting-Forever)
"Behold the crystal skull!" - Crystal skull
Tuma (Everlasting-Forever)
Born an extremely ugly child Tuma has been forced to hide his face since birth by wear the Mask of Bah'Na'Na.  The tribe did not know at the time that this was a cursed and deadly mask and that it granted the wearer great powers.  Tuma was through the power of the Mask able to recover one of the Crystal Skulls necessary in raising dread Obba'hah'ma.

Objective: Destroy the Crystal Skull

"Rise and worship me!" - Magical mask
Masego (Divine Favour)
Charismatic and deadly.  If there was a dark magician voted most likely to succeed Onyekachi the Masego would be that man.  A black heart beats in this vilest of chests.  No deed is too heinous, no act to low, no price to high if he can achieve the power he needs to be number one.  Problem is Onyekachi is currently in that position, Masego plans to slip a dagger in the magicians heart once dread Obba'hah'ma is successfully summoned and take Onyekachi place as number one black magician.

Objective: Destroy magical mask.