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Subject: No Man Left Behind... really? rss

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Some spoilers for the crossroads cards in this session report.

Played the game with all the modules: Improvement, Bandit and Raxxon. Only the second time we've played TLN and we've played the original game quite a few times. The first time we played TLN was the three stage Raxxon scenario which we successfully completed. My version included some promos, such as the BGG Crossroads cards and some additonal characters,

We tried a medium length mission; No One Left Behind which required there to be seven outsider cards. Started at 5 morale.

I ended up with the betrayal card; need three weapons equipped and three fuel as well as morale at 0. So far, we know enough that one should only make a betrayal move late in the game, so I decided to bide my time and take things easy.


Lily Mae surveyed the rag tag group. "So now we have to pin our hopes on these guys and a monkey..." she whispered to Gia.

"Better together than apart," Gia said. The leader of the group was obviously Rosa, a former prison guard who was as tough as she looked.

"I think I'll head to the police station; get some guns which should help us with the bandits... and whatever creatures will come from the research facility," she said.

"I still have some C4," Lily Mae said. "It should come in handy."


First player moves out and rolls a tooth. One down.

Gia heads out to the police station. But the next player decides to do the same with Eric Parker. I guess I should have told him to use a fuel. The player rolls a tooth and I roll a wound, so Gia and Eric die. Barely a round and already down 3 morale. Things aren't looking good. shake

The chimp heads to Raxxon but we aren't able to lock it down so the Collector zombie emerges. At least we have a crossroads card that helps us with the bandits.

Lily hears about Gia's death and she breaks down. "Damn it," she says. At the colony, they've managed to get the DVD player working and they're watching old Fresh Prince DVDs.

Ignoring everyone, Lily makes her move to the Library, but she's nowhere as skillful as Gia at searching. She just hope her expertise with explosives will keep the walkers away..


Library was not the best choice for my objectives, but both the police and gas station were nearly full. At least the library is supposed to have more fuel but with Lily's lousy search ability (5+) things aren't looking too good.

The colony's attempts to take down the Collector are for naught. It takes out stuff and rolls its trolley to another location. The bandits are complicating things, and take a 2 outsider card to their hideout.

Blue's player gets an outsider on his search. Who else but... Rodney Smith! The mountie gives some hope to the group, at least. The chimp was finding loads of great stuff; personal barrier, drones and more.

Lily's explosive barrier takes down the walkers at her location. But Lily is still struggling trying to find anything of worth, and time is ticking. She'd never fulfil her purpose but it doesn't look good for the whole group.

And then the fateful crossroads card is pulled.

Spoiler (click to reveal)
If morale is 2 or less, the survivors who have fulfiled their objectives can try to make a run for it, with each survivor doing so rolling 5 times on the exposure dice. Three of the players had fulfiled their objectives and with victory almost an impossibility they decide to bail. Have to say this was one of the most tense moments in all our gaming history; every one of them manages to get one survivor away, thus winning their objective. The player with the chimp loses two guys but Rodney Smith makes it out. Rosa the prison guard and Derek also make it out, abandoning the colony to just myself and another player.


I suppose I could have just revealed myself as the traitor and maybe get exiled for a new objective. But I decide to see if we can somehow manage to achieve the main objective with just the two of us.

There's only a few rounds to do it; somehow we manage to, surviving the crisis. I dig up two outsider cards from the library, getting Cole Winters and Anita Wallace on the last turn. Eric Summer turns up as well, but by now it's too late, even though he does take down three zombies at the colony. There's also a bunch of helpless survivors in the colony, and we maintain two morale. There are few spots left on the board not filled with zombies or Raxxon zombies. The other player gets the outsider card from the bandit hideout we end up one short of the main objective. The round tracker moves to 0 and we both fail our missions.

Guess things don't look too great. If they're going to leave us behind I'm not going to hang around, Lisa thought.

Wait, wait. Cole and Anita say, rushing up to her. "Come with us. We won't abandon you," Cole says.

"That's right, girl," Anita says. "And look what we got!" She holds up the DVD player.

Lisa smiles. There was still C4 in her bag and she knew how to jury rig some more bombs. "Let's get going then," she said. The zombies Raxxon unleashed were on the prowl...


--

Great game. I'm not a fan of the despair and disgruntled survivors, but the extra modules did add something different to the game. We didn't manage to defeat any of the special zombies, but things went south quickly and it's quite fortunate that three players still managed to win.

I'd still recommend the original for those starting out but DoW: TLN provides enough variation, and there's fewer blueprint cards that made the first game far easier.

It was a wild game and I don't think I could achieve my objectives with only one survivor. There were moments of great humour despite the tension, such as one of the cards from the BGG Crossroads pack making an appearance, Rodney Smith dropping by, and getting the DVD player, of all things, for our lone improvement to the colony. At the end of the game we had 7 people in the graveyard, 4 from the players whose characters made a run for the hills.

There's definitely more chance in DoW: TLN, with dice rolls to determine the effect of pills, defeating bandits and those dreaded Raxxon zombies, besides the exposure rolls.

Guess I'll really have to remind folks to use fuel to move, particularly to places where there's already a survivor
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