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Subject: They're coming for you Susan! rss

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Mike D
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For this session of Graveyard Dash we'll be following the efforts of our two protagonists, Chuck and Suzy, as they race against an undead horde to reach the graveyard gates. Actually, since there's space for a third character I'll also add Suzy's Mom who's come along to keep an eye on the couple.

At the start of the game the hapless trio have spotted the rising dead and decided it's time to leave. "Follow Me!" calls Chuck as they all head off in different directions.

The Escape Plan. Chuck's first objective is the Mausoleum, Suzy the Gardener's Shack, and Suzy's Mom straight through the middle past the Fountain. The zombies have no real plan, but there is a bone to pick.

Rather than doing a long turn-by-turn session report I'll just do the illustrated highlights...

It's turn three, Suzy's Mom has chosen the wrong path for sure and runs straight into a zombie pack. She drops the first one with a well-placed knitting needle. First zombie kill of the day! Go Mom!

Turn four. A zombie springs out from behind a tree as Suzy approaches the Shack but she kicks the walker over a nearby wheelbarrow. Turns five to seven will see Suzy entering the Shack, finding a gardener's rake, and then using it to take the head off this same rotter. Score one for Suzy!

Turn six. While Suzy's still in the Shack, and Chuck has made a pretty easy run into the Mausoleum, Suzy's Mom is still struggling. She finally reaches the Fountain and splashes a double-handful of holy water over the nearest deader who dissolves with a hideous shriek. That's two down for Mom!

Turn nine. Things are going well for the young couple but Suzy's Mom is having trouble outdistancing her pursuers. A nasty tangle sees her ramming one walker's head into a gravestone, but another grabs her and she's bit! Three points for Mom, but oh dear!

Turn eleven. We haven't see much of Chuck but that's because he doing so well. He made it to the Mausoleum on turn 7 and came out bearing a cross. He's drawn a crowd and had a few tussles already but the holy artifact is helping to keep the dead at bay. The gates are in sight!

Turn twelve. Suzy's Mom recovered from the first bite but finds herself on the wrong side of a rancid sandwich. She dings one of the zombies with her handbag but comes off poorly, as the other chomps on her. Suzy dashes along quietly to the south, trying hard not to laugh cry.

Here's the field at turn fourteen. We see Chuck has just made an easy exit out through the gates! He pauses to screech a final "Follow me!" at rake-bearing Suzy who looks like she has a pretty clear path. The zombies that were chasing Chuck all turn to look who he's speaking to.

Turn sixteen. Suzy's Mom tries to cut towards open ground but is trapped again and takes a third gnashing. Suzy meanwhile is making an end-run but there's a pack at the gate and she gets the wind knocked out of her.

Turn seventeen. The Horror! Suzy pushes her way up to the gate and reaches her hand through to the waiting Chuck.... and he falls back still clutching her severed arm as the biters take her down, just inches from safety! Ye gads!

Turn twenty-one. It takes four more turns of frantic shambling, pushing and scratching before Suzy's Mom is finally pinned to the ground and dismembered by the horde. Still, you can see it's a nice spot nestled between three trees... good spot for a picnic.

Concluding Remarks
And so goes a session of Graveyard Dash.
Chuck is the surviving winner, the sniveling little coward. Suzy killed one zombie and scores extra points for a literally nail-biting death-scene. Suzy's Mom was kind of a bad-ass, with three kills in the game, and a whole lot of action to boot. Or maybe the comic relief with the sad ending.

So! It was an easy game to play and fun to write up. This is one of Rob's earliest print-and-play mini-games so don't expect the same graphics quality of more recent Avalon work like Monster Hunters. Rules are fairly trivial with no need to look anything up after a few turns, and that's exactly as it should be. Makes for fun for 30 minute beer and pretzel game, and it could also be neat to do a session like this with miniatures.

There's a free to download version of Graveyard Dash (Z-Day) which follows the group out of the graveyard and down the town streets. Avalon Games' sadly discontinued house magazine, Game Geek #6, also contains a Mall Dash map. There's no mention of a chopper on the roof but I'm sure it's there. Run all three games back to back for massive zombie madness. I know I want to.
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