Dr. Manbender Comes a Knocking

Ah yes, another game of Attack of the Mutants. This time we had High Roller Ken*, Chemical Dave** and Lord Al*** as the humans. I, Whitey, was once again entrusted to the bad evil Doctor. There were some interesting moments in this game but it still needs a hint of tweeking. One of the tactics tried was an aggressive push by the Humans to get the robots into the fight early. This produced the most serious robot losses I’ve ever seen. By the end of the game the human’s had one Grip-Bot, shown in the picture above.

What should have made the human tactic work was the so-called wall of lead a lone Gun-Bot can throw. Frankly, the way it is in the game right now its more like a wall of snowballs with rocks in them. Yes, sort of daunting but no real match for the natural tenacity of the Mutant. So I am doing two things to the next version of the rules. 1st, the number of dice thrown will double. Get lucky and you can wipe out even bigger hordes! The other thing is I am now going to make it possible for the Gun-Bots to “go dry” as they say. After a wall of lead, roll a D6. 1-3 = low ammo. After the first round of the fight is over the robot must retreat and be resupplied (does it need a human or grip bot to resupply… that is an interesting question.) It is a bit of a gamble, which suits me fine. There is no such thing as certainty in life! It makes the Gun-Bots more independent but also retains their vulnerability such that independent operation requires a risk vs. gain evaluation.

Dr. Mincy still doesn’t have a special ability. I’m working on that one. The professors are locked in labs until turn 4 as per the original game (well in the original they were in the Tech Center, now they can be in 1 of 3 labs outside of the tech center. I’m considering that if they want, they can stay in their labs an additional turn. For each TA, Grip-Bot and Scientist in the lab on turn 5 the Humans get a D6 to roll. A roll of 6 on one or more of those dice produces an advancement. The Ad Astra Lab produces a faster startup of the time machine (one turn can make a world of difference.) The quantum lab produces the quantum gun – a strange contraption that allows one upgraded Gun-bot to act as support (+1) even from a different room or while in reserve!

“My god, it only took 30 years to weaponize Special Relativity… now we’ve done it with quantum mechanics!”

Finally a breakthrough in the Robotics lab will allow one Grip-Bot to be improved to CV 6. I assume that means the TA’s raided Archaeology and welded a Lombard shield and lance to the poor machine!

Tonight’s game went pretty smoothly. It was close. Dr. Manbender and 3 Leader Mutants crashed through the door on turn 10. One of the mutants took a hit and went down, but then Dr. Manbender got into the action himself. Because he was the attacker all of the ties went to his side instead of the human side. I wonder if it would have been better for the humans to have counter-attacked before he was in the room. The only problem with that plan was the mutant’s had a formidable pincer attack going with another set of mutants waiting at the only other un-barricaded door. So, I don’t blame them for not wanting to take a chance. It was an opportunity to produce a hit and run attack which is what the retreat rules are for. I understand their reluctance at that gamble.

I think the loses of the robots early on and the weak performance of the Gun-Bots led directly to the human loss. The strategy wasn’t bad, not knowing the odds. However I’ve played the game 7 times now and the Gun-Bots need the above adjustment.

In the next day or two I will post the rules here.

As for the quote above – I should point out that it is actually not correct. QM/QP has been weaponized for decades – the advances in transistors, chemistry and lasers all rely upon quantum mechanical understanding and the neutron modulators in nuclear weapons rely upon the understanding of the duality  of photons as waves and particles. But it sounds cool and would and should be a line from a B-Movie!

*,**,*** and yes, I know, I game with people who have funny nicknames.

AotM Game checks off another milestone

My Attack of the Mutants revival is coming along nicely. Check out these photos. The miniatures for the good guys are now done.

Robots and Scientists

Dr. Richardson and Dr. Applewhite with the Mk-1 Manipulator bots

All of these figures are by Black Cat Bases. I was looking for generic academic scientists and they had them! I was also looking for robots that were evocative of the source material. In this case the original ad for the game seen in the next photo.

Dr. Applewhite does a few calculations while a robot defends one hall and terrified students run down the other.Here we see the “mutants” easily fit into the zombie category. The box art of the original game show much crazier creatures but I think this art work more closely captures the right feeling. The Black Cat Bases robots are about 50% larger in comparison to the robot shown here but clearly have the lab bench prototype look I wanted.
Robots and Scientist

Dr. Mincy and the Mk-1 Gunhead bots

There is an actual Dr. Mincy and she looks a lot like her character shown here. In the game Dr. Mincy is the one conducting the astral travel experiments. All these figures are from Black Cat Bases.

Dr. Manbender and the Robots from the Future

Dr. Manbender and the Robots from the Future

The Evil Scientist is from Reaper Miniatures and the Securitron robots are from Black Cat Bases. These are excellent figures. The arms for the robots are tough to get off the sprue and attach but are well worth it as the look is great. These robots have a chance of making an appearance in game play as either good robots from the future or bad robots from the future!

The Teacher's Assistants

The Teacher's Assistants

These student figures are from Reaper and are awesome. The details and stereotypes fit in perfect with the game concept. There is the Nerd, The Jock and the Hot Girl. In this case it is Penny Applewhite, daughter of Dr. Applewhite and her two love interests – Percy Fitzwater the genius (brains) and Leon “Buck” Bukaw the football hero (brawn). Gone from the game is the really odious portrayal of ROTC. I have too much respect for that institution to treat it as poorly as the original author did.

Hopefully I’ll raise the funds to get the “mutants” finished in time for Nashcon. The game rules are progressing. I’m trying to keep them fun and fast with enough tactics to keep it interesting.