Z War One
(current news on Boardgamegeek.com is the Kickstarter has been cancelled after making 150% of its requirement-restart 19th Oct-updates as we hear them)
Z War One Kickstarts on October 19th. It is a comic/scenario based, co-operative, survival board game, in which the players try not to become infected and die.
ZW1 is the first episodic board game of this type, and season one will contain six issues, covering 26 chapters or scenarios. Upon first glance, ZW1 could be passed off as any of the other several zombie games around at the moment, but when you read the rules and start to play, you realise just how different it is. Each character starts the game with set equipment, ranging from melee and ranged weapons, to armour and a zombie stink spray (which temporarily stops zombies from sensing you at all). The equipment generally has ammo which is tracked by one player on the character tracker pad, run out of ammo and your gun just became useless...
The zombies in ZW1 are slow, shambling beasts, wandering around the board, heading towards the nearest character they can sense (these guys have a smell stat as well as line of sight), untill they can actually see you, when they get faster. When we played, we realised how nasty they can be on turn one, when three Z's spawned directly behind a player, who got mobbed and bitten three times, leaving him infected, and short of action points for the following rounds...
Each weapon has a small table printed on the card, giving you the results of a die (D8) roll, either a miss, a knock down or a hit. If you knock down a zombie, it can be executed with no die roll for two action points (one of the features i love about this game). For two action points (players start with four per turn, and lose them as they are wounded) you can enter into an overwatch state, placing a counter to show which direction you are looking, and then during the zombie turn if anything takes a step into your los you can attempt to shoot/hit it. This is your friend, this is the way you stay alive, it is also a slow way to move around the board.
Zombies cannot open doors, so when you do, there is a chance there are zombies in the room, waiting to gnaw on your tasty flesh! They may even be in your face as you open the door, so never open a door as your last action, unless you feel like being chomped on.
As well as the standard 1-4 player game, you can add a fifth player, this player acts as the director, in the directors cut version of the game. They have access to Director cards, which can, and do, influence the flow of play, often adding more zombies to
the board alongside the spawn roll made each turn.
The second issue includes new zombies (Diggers) and a new survivor, and Archer with a pet dog who helps out along the way. I have not yet read the second issue of the comic (as i received a preview copy, and it was going to print at the time).
The Diggers are that much scarier than standard Z's, and when i play, i try to leave them to the others to encounter, whilst i concentrate on mission goals...
ZW1 is fast-paced, fun, and scary as all Hell! My group enjoy playing ZW1 alot, and i can see it getting lots of table time at my place. When this Kickstarter goes live, get involved, it is 100% worth backing.