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Zulus on the Ramparts!» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Playing through my Victory Point Games titles rss

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Paul Dodds
United Kingdom
Reading
Berkshire
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"If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking."
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I was playing the base game with no optional rules

Things didn't start well for the defenders when a well placed Zulu fire arrow caused the storehouse to burst into flames. Ignoring the fire Lieutenant Bromhead heroically started constructing an inner barricade, a task he was able to completely quickly thanks to the timely assistance of Sergeant Windridge. With the Zulus still a safe distance away Lieutenant Bromhead hurriedly distributed water and ammunition to the beleaguered troops.

A charge by the inDluyengwe momentarily startled the defenders, but then the Zulus paused to perform the spear washing ritual, much to the defender’s relief. Sergeant Windridge took advantage of this lull to extinguish the fire in the storehouse. With Zulu snipers and British rifles overheating dissuading the defenders from firing, most of the iButho were now ominously approaching the outer wall. Lieutenant Bromhead, again able assisted by Sergeant Windridge, used this time to construct the final redoubt, and Commissary Dalton was dispatched to help defending the still smouldering storehouse.

By now the uDloko were closing on the outer wall when a phenomenal volley from the defenders utterly decimated the Zulu ranks, with much cheering from the British soldiers following. Some claim even to have seen Lieutenant Bromhead actually smile! As darkness fell the roused defenders dispatched Corporal Schiess to help defend the north wall where the eager inDluyengwe were again advancing.

Unfortunately the British musketry proved lacking in the dark and the defenders were unable to stem the steady Zulu advance. A sudden charge by all the remaining iButho overran the defences of Commissary Dalton and Corporal Schiess and saw the uThulwana storm into the outer perimeter. The situation suddenly looked very grim for Her Majesty’s troops! A Reserve Platoon had been formed under the command of Lieutenant Chard and Sergeant Windridge, but even they seemed unable to react in this present crisis. When it was clear that the uThulwana were about advance further into the compound Corporal Schiess leapt from cover and shouting "For Queen and Country" urged the Reserve Platoon to follow him charging into the midst of the Zulus. Roused by Corporal Schiess’ heroic example, the Reserve Platoon charged was able to drive the Zulus back through the hospital. Sadly Corporal Schiess fell in the fierce fighting, but his name lives on!

The situation grew desperate: even Surgeon Reynolds was forced to abandon tending the wounded and attend to the more pressing need of distributing water and ammunition to the hard pressed defenders. Another Zulu charge carried the inDluyengwe to the inner barricade and the inDlondo to the outer perimeter. Inspired by Corporal Schiess’ noble sacrifice, the Reserve Platoon was able to force the inDluyengwe back to the storehouse, but their ranks were now decimated as a result of fighting off two Zulu charges.

Lieutenant Adendorff now stepped to the fore and ordered the defenders to start propping the English dead against the wall and to rest their rifles on the wall. This unexpected appearance of "reinforcements" confused the Zulus and much to defenders' relief the iButho temporarily withdrew in order to rally and replan. Sadly Lieutenant Adendorff was not to witness the success of his daring plan as a loaded rifle slipped from the wall and discharged, killing him instantly.

Dawn was just breaking. and as the defenders steeled themselves for what they thought would be the final assault the sound of bugles could be heard over the savannah. The relief column had arrived and Rorke's Drift was saved!

Final score:
4VP - Colour Sergeant Bourne and Private Hook available
4VP - neither building on fire
4VP - hit markers
5VP - eliminated uDloko
20VP - Zulus never reached victory marker

37VPs = Major British Victory

Analysis: I definitely got lucky here. Drawing lots of events and one space iButho advances by single units early in the game allowed me to construct both barricades before night fell. I also drew Colour Sergeant Bourne reasonably early, and this is always extremely helpful as he allows you to ignore the hand size limit while he is Available. I was a little worried at night when I couldn't roll anything useful, but the Reserve Platoon saved me just when I needed it. Drawing Lieutenant Adendorff three turns from the end allowed me to discard the card and return both rally tokens and the washing of spears to the cup. I drew one of the rally tokens and seniority debate as my last two tokens that prevented any advances, which was just as well as I was low on volley cards as well as ammunition! On the last couple of turns I was frantically using Lieutenant Chard's ability every turn to chomp through the deck to get to the Relief Column before the advances started again!
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Steve Herron
United States
Johnson City
Tennessee
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What are they teaching in your schools over there? There is a assistant coach on our university's soccer team (I made friends with) from Manchester. I was telling him about the game (I have it and on ipad) and he told me he never heard of Rorke's Drift. I don't think he was joking.
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Dave Daffin
United Kingdom
Ledbury
Herefordshire
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sherron wrote:
What are they teaching in your schools over there? There is a assistant coach on our university's soccer team (I made friends with) from Manchester. I was telling him about the game (I have it and on ipad) and he told me he never heard of Rorke's Drift. I don't think he was joking.


I certainly was never taught about Rourke's Drift at School. But that wasn't necessary when I was growing up as the film 'Zulu' was frequently shown on TV (when we only had three channels to choose from).

So I think the abundance of satellite channels these days is a bit of a double-edged sword, diluting the educational element.
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Paul Dodds
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My experiences were the same as yours, Dave. I was never taught about it at school but Zulu seemed to be on telly the whole time I was growing up.

I'm shocked by Steve's news to discover that there is someone from the UK who has never seen Zulu!
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Mayor Jim
United States
Fort Wright
Kentucky
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This is strange...I've been to a number of Zulu war sites, including Rorkes drift...and live in the US. They don't teach Zulu War history here... But the movies Zulu and Zulu Dawn have inspired a search for knowledge here of that conflict.
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