So enough with all this roleplaying, let’s see what it looks like when the lead starts flying or the lasers start, um, pew-pewing. Let’s open up our textbooks, class, to page 50 to check out terrain as we set up our table. Again we see a simple table to see what kind of landscape we’ll be fighting on. So let’s roll it.
9 – Street. This means in section 4,5 and 6 (the three in the middle) will be a, anyone? Anyone? Street. The rest of the sections will be filled with, filled with what? Anyone? Anyone? Buildings. They’ll be filled with buildings. So let’s start building our terrain.
Every other section has 1+1d3 buildings in them, so it should be a bustling city street. This is what I’m left with when all is said and done:
I never said I was an artist. Usually I would field the table with PEFs again and set the stage like before, but because I want a nice combat, I’m going to set things up MY way.
“I knew there was trouble when I saw the construction cones, when they look new and they detour you to a little used road and you can’t see any work being done, you may be being herded into a trap. Usually you’ll see a newly covered up pot hole, drive over it and bam, no more worry for the bad guys. That’s why I pulled over and exited my car. Foot traffic is much more difficult to blow up with mines in an urban setting without a lot of bystanders losing their lives, and so far nothing has shown that anyone is willing to go that far to stop my investigation.
I strained my eyes, glancing under the streetlight at the end of the block. There was a very beautiful woman standing there. She looked familiar somehow, though it’s possible she was a woman of the evening who had those off-the-shelf looks that you can pick up at any of the Body Shops around town. But no, this one was different. This was the Razor woman I saw with the politician earlier today. Was she waiting for me? To blow up my car? I’d have to cross the street to confront her, which was risky. There were many abandoned building along the way, not to mention an alleyway where an ambush could easily be waiting. I adjusted the pistol in my trenchcoat pocket to make it more accessible should I need it and began walking forward.”
You’ll notice the scale is a bit different from last time. That’s because I am much more concerned with distance because I know this will be a fire fight. Right now, it’s just me and the Razor, but I placed a PEF in the alley way and one behind the blind spot on the other side of the road. I’ve preset my own list of possible NPCs, which is recommended you do for ease of play. Instead of purely rolling on tables, I made it half innocent bystanders, and have combatants, so that should make things interesting. Also, I’m making the Law Level of this location a 3, meaning any time I roll doubles of four or higher on the Activation dice, a new PEF will be created. So this should get good and get good fast.
Oh, I also had a few of those NPC results be friends of Andrew. He’s no dummy, ya know.
Speaking of dummies, I never rolled stats for our Razor-lady, so let’s take a long look at her:
# Gen Rep Fit Pep Sav Wpn
1 F 4 4 2 3 –
I’m lucky that I got a Rep 4 Razor, as there’s a few Rep 5’s in there. They also have the following traits:
Bullet Move: When a hit is scored on the Razor by Ranged Weapons this test is immediately taken.
Infrared vision: Able to see normal distances in the dark and low light conditions.
Nerves of Steel: Treat Duck Back as if Carry On and never Outgunned. Not affected by Fear.
Rage: Counts a +2d6 when in melee.
Steely Eyes: Counts a +1d6 when taking the In Sight Test.
Terrifying: When within 12” and in sight the terrifying character will cause Fear in everyone except those with certain Attributes including Terrifying. When a character
Fears an opponent:
+ Counts a -1d6 when in melee with this opponent.
+ Always counts the Fast Moving penalty when firing at this opponent.
+ Counts a -1d6 when taking the Charge into Melee Test.
Once a character scores damage to a Terrifying character it no longer Fears it or its type.
What’s Bullet Move, you ask? Well, anytime I score a hit with a ranged weapon, she takes a test against her Rep. If she passes 2d6, I missed her. If she passes 1d6, she counts as in cover and I have to check again to see if I actually hit her.
Oh yeah, they also have a toxin that comes out of their nails that makes it hard to not fall down whenever they hit you.
And I’m approaching this lady? Maybe I shouldn’t have taken that Genius trait…Let’s activate!
Me: 2 Her: 3
We’ll both activate this turn, but she goes first. Awesome, let’s see what she does.
1,2 – pass 2d6
She will approach me, staying in cover if able. No surprise there, she wants to get close to get me scared. It doesn’t appear that Razors move any farther than normal characters, they just move faster, I guess, so she’ll move 8″ towards me, trying to stay in cover, though I doubt she really needs to. It doesn’t really seem possible for her to stay in cover, so I just have her walk menacingly towards me. I can easily picture this, with me trying to remain cool standing next to my car. She’s still about 27″ away, so I’m still good there, but it’s not my turn yet, there’s still the two PEFs to worry about. Yeah, they still go, too. Worried yet?
We’ll start with the one in the blind spot. I’m rolling against a 4.
3,6 – pass 1d6
It enters the nearest building. Hmmm. If I start getting sniped at from a window, I’m toast. If they get sniped at, on the other hand…I still can’t see them, though, so I have to move on to the alley-way shadow:
5,5 – pass 0d6
It moves 1 section away from me. So I now put it on the other side of the futuristic parked car. Again, I’m playing in the evening because it’s thematic, though I’m using streetlights and neon signs everywhere to get rid of low light penalties for me. Mainly because I always forget them. Yeah, I cheat a bit.
Speaking of cheating, here’s a neat thing I’m going to do. As the Razor slowly slinks up to Andrew, he thinks:
“Good thing I’ve been monkeying with my gun lately…”
Wha…huh? Yeah, I’m going to make myself a Saavy test to give my BAP greater range. Why? Because it only has a range of 12″, and that’s almost certain death. So I’m going to give it a range of 24″ if I’m successful. But if I’m not, then I’m going to lower its ROF to 1. Also might be certain death, but I’m going to have to be creative to get myself out of this. This is the great thing about this system, you’re allowed to do things like this. Luckily I’m a genius, which adds +2 to my Saavy test, so I’m rolling 7d6. Let’s roll on the challenge table.
I need to pass 2d6 to succeed, and I did there, so boom, I have a 24″ pistol. However, I’m counting that as my action for the turn. Perhaps I’m screwing on the new sight onto my gun, or pushing buttons on the new magnetic rail gun system on my pistol. Either way, S*** just got real.
Had to add a bit of color to the picture because things are getting lost on the black background. It gets a bit better as I zoom in, but getting close is the LAST thing I want to do, so I’ll have to improvise a bit. The arrow is the PEF that didn’t make it into the shot. Let’s start the second turn.
Me: 2 Them: 6
Ah, what luck! I get to activate, but they don’t! Hmm, do I stay here and try to think of some new Savvy challenges? Of course, I could get lucky, walk to 24″, pop off 2 shots and finish this. Eh, I don’t want to be too much of a munchkin and say “Well, good thing I built this cannon in my car…” so let’s get shooting. I can’t get her to Duck Back, but maybe I can get her to retire behind a building and keep her distance. I take a couple steps forward and it now says I’m 21″ away. Gulp. I level my gun and fire. So, what you do to fire is take up as many dice as the ROF of your gun, in this case a BAP (Big Ass Pistol) can fire at 1 or 2, clearly this time I’m going with 2. Then you roll them, and add each die individually to your Rep, like this:
Which are fantastic rolls, by the way. Looking at the Ranged Combat table, both results are a hit. Sadly she now goes into bullet time for each hit. This is where the Player experiences the Fear trait. Hit number one:
4,3 – pass 2d6
She just dodged a bullet, oh boy. And hit number two?
2,3 – pass 2d6
Nope. This is some Matrix crap right here.
At least she now immediately rolls on the Received Fire table. Yes, it seems like a lot of rolling, but what this is simulating is her instantaneous reactions to getting shot. She may fire back (which she can’t), charge at me, duck for cover, etc. She’s not just going to stand there like other games. So let’s see what happens as hot lead flies past her, as a Criminal she’s rolling on the Ganger reaction table, though Mercenary may be more appropriate, but I’ll stick with Ganger for now because it might give me a small edge:
3,5 – pass 1d6
That says Duck Back, which would have her moving towards the nearest cover, however, Nerves of Steel means she has the Carry On reaction, which is she will stay where she is. Yeesh. This is creepy. That’s it for this turn since they rolled 6, let’s hope that keeps happening. Turn 3:
Me:4 Them: 3
Okay, I get to activate first, but then they will all activate. Clearly I’m going to fire, and then back up so she can’t get near me. So let’s shoot some more and hope some friends show up soon:
1+5 = 6
Both complete misses. That’s the complete opposite of what I rolled last time. Regression towards the mean ain’t just for math class, folks. Now an 8″ walk back to put the car between myself and her. Now the PEFs go (they should have gone first before, since they have a lower REP, but I was just too darn excited). We’ll start with the one in the building:
4,2 pass 2d6
It moves 1 section directly towards me. So in the buildings, the PEF is now directly north of me. It will have to leave the buildings to actually activate and become people. If I end up on the sidewalk, it could activate and become people at the windows, which is interesting. But nothing for now. Now the PEF at the end of the street:
5,1 pass 1d6
It also enters the buildings. It’s like a weird Wild West shootout now. And now, our Razor:
3,3 pass 2d6
Again, she stalks forward 8″ Cue JAWS theme.
Let’s try those activation dice again. C’mon no Whammie, no Whammie….
Me: 1 Them: 4
Dang, they go first. Gulp. Okay, I’ll check the PEF that’s off screen to the North there (yes North is up, isn’t it always?).
5,3 pass 1d6
Huh, it exits the building. I’m going to measure to see if we’re in the same section (if it were day it’d activate, but since it’s evening we have to be in the same section to activate). Nope, it’s in section 3 and I’m at the lower extreme of section 6. The other PEF:
1,4 pass 2d6
Moves a section closer, so it’s now in the buildings in the center of the board. Could be bad. And now Ms. Hugsalot. Let’s see if this Terminator-like stalking continues:
5,4 pass 1d6
That’s different. Hmmm, it looks like she wants to try and Charge into Melee? Can she get within 6″ of me? Only if she makes a Fast Move check. Otherwise the result would be Duck Back, which she ignores because of her Nerves of Steel. And then I’m not entirely sure what she’d do, so I’m going to interpret this as Fast Move to attempt to Charge into Melee. Which could be very very VERY bad. Let’s make a Fast Move check for her:
5,6 pass 0d6
HA! Each pass of a d6 lets you add half your movement to your total movement for a turn. It does make it harder to shoot (and be shot at), though and probably affects other things as well. I’m guessing the road is a bit slick from rain (film noir streets are always wet), so she couldn’t get a good run started, so she just moves her base 8″. Phew. Let’s get to my turn. I’m backing around the car and opening fire myself. Have to keep as much distance as possible from her until I can get some back up. Of course I haven’t rolled doubles yet, so I think I’m going to run north and trigger that PEF and hope I roll one of my buddies.
I’m going to Fast Move myself. Otherwise I’ll be within 14″ of her and she’ll be able to Charge at me next turn. And I’ll shoot at her, too. Because shooting. Fast Moving:
2,5 pass 2d6
That means I have 24″ to run. Make scared doggie sounds in your head, because that’s what I’m making as I dash up the right side of the table. I stop my movement when I round the car to pop off two rounds, and will continue my movement once all reactions are over. Again, another great thing about this system, not just “Move and shoot or shoot then move.” Firing:
Which is great, because it’s harder to hit people while Moving Fast, but two elevens are great. Of course, now she does bullet time again.
4,6 – pass 1d6
She counts as being in cover, but an 11 hits anyway. I’ll check for the other bullet before I get to that hit. This is going surprisingly well!
2,3 – pass 2d6
That one’s a miss. Now roll the hit versus Impact 2. That’s not that great, but in this game, if I roll a 1, she is Obviously Dead. No ifs, ands or buts. Combat is scary (as it should be), so I could end it right here. C’mon 1!
*sigh* She now rolls on the Recover from Knockdown table. At the very least I stunned the girl which might buy me some time to get some more stuff between her and I.
6,4 – pass 1d6
Out of the fight! She’s not dead, but not able to fight for as long as this scenario lasts. WOOO!
Now just for S’s&G’s let’s say she was able to Charge at me. Let’s see what would have happened. First, I would feel Fear as claws protruded from her fingertips as she dashed at me at a speed hardly perceptible to the human mind. Then she would make a Charging test, with a +1 to her Rep and I would have a -1 because of Fear.
Me: 6,4,6,6 Her: 5,2,2,3,6
So I beat her by one by sheer luck. That would mean I’d be able to pop a shot off at her. She’d be considered fast moving, so I’d need to roll 4+ to hit, and then not have her pass 2d6 for Bullet time. Possible.
Let’s assume she’s able to get me into Melee. Here’s where it gets scary:
I would be rolling 3 dice because I wasn’t holding a weapon and I’m under fear. She’d be rolling 6 dice. If I’m hit, which is over 50% likely, I would immediately roll a d6 (because of her nail’s toxin) if it’s a 5 or 6, if I make a Recover from Knockdown test, I only roll 1d6. Keep in mind, passing 1d6 on that chart is still Out of the Fight.
And on the Melee table, the number of successes you win by is the Impact of the hit. Since she’s doubling my dice, it’d average out to 3. 50% of being taken Out of the Fight at that point, before the toxin even kicks in.
Being a Rep higher than her definitely gave me an edge, but if she could have gotten closer (say, if I was distracted by a ranged combatant), I don’t think I would have lasted long.
So there you go, it was quick, but you never know where it’s going to go with this game system. The company has systems for Sci-fi, Historical, fantasy, sports, modern, horror, you name it. I just found that they’ve JUST put out “Back Alleys, Bright Lights,” a new book in the 5150 RPG line of books that can be combined in all the others, that digs even deeper than Urban Renewal does. I haven’t looked into it, but it looks like Urban Renewal on steroids. If any readers pick it up, let us know what it’s like!
Thanks for reading!
PS – I don’t know what my next very wordy playthrough will be, so I’ll take suggestions from the 4 of you who read these.