A member of our group was interested in trying Gaslands after his sons had played it at MOAB, so we gave it yet another go last night. We randomly determined a scenario using our D6 table which gives less emphasis to races and we got ... a race. But that's OK; a nice Death Race is a good way to learn. I gave Drew - the learner - the option of a simple Rutherford team based around fearsome forward firepower on two cars, or a simple two-car Idris team with fewer guns but faster, more controlled cars. He opted for the latter. The other teams were:
Dave - A couple of Slime cars; not heavily armed but good generalists.
Ed - A single rocket-festooned Rutherford helicopter.
Jason - A pair of Miyazaki buggy-sized rally-cars
Me - A Warden prisoner team, consisting of two cheap, nasty cars rigged to explode, and a badass ute with an excavator welded to the back.
Here we all are at the start. My first car has just moved. Yes, it's Max's V8 Interceptor. I forgot to bring one of the vehicles I'd intended to use and had to make a last-minute substitution.
This was the track - a tricky field involving weaving through lines of containers. I need to work out some pre-defined basic layouts to choose from, as after setup we worked out a few ways we could have made the circuit more interesting.
In a Death Race there is a dash for the first gate, as this is where a vehicle's weapons become active. Up until then only collisions - and rams - are allowed. Surprisingly everyone was very considerate and avoided colliding with their opponents. In the case of my vehicles it was because they were rigged to explode in an apocalyptic fireball if they were destroyed, so needed to be treated with caution.
There were some near-misses though.
Approaching Gate One.
Drew got one of his vehicles across the line, and then spun around, partially because the optimum route to the next gate was back the way he'd come but also because it meant he could bring his machine-gun to bear.
Drew's second car passed the gate, smashing into one of Jason's delicate rally-cars.
Ed's helicopter crossed the line and the carnage began, with its rockets dishing out damage on all sides. Helicopters in Gaslands can carry a decent payload, but can't take much in the way of incoming fire.
Intermission - a word from our sponsors ...
Ed's helicopter spun around and fired more rockets. This destroyed one car, which exploded, destroying another, which exploded destroying another ... and so on. Even the helicopter itself was almost shot down by one of the chain of explosions it caused.
My ute had been plodding slowly forward, and caught up with everyone just in time to receive a volley of rockets.
Drew and Jason had each lost both of their vehicles and were waiting to respawn, whilst I soon lost the ute and ended up in respawn territory as well (albeit with a serious pile of Audience Votes; viewers like seeing the Warden's team explode). Even Dave was wrecked.
As people got back into the running, Ed's helicopter did another attack run before being shot down (ready to respawn almost immediately).
We all struggled to reach Gate Two but kept taking damage and losing our vehicle, having to respawn them again and again.
We reached a point where there were no running vehicles left on the field, at which point we agreed to call it a five-way draw. We'd all had a great time even without a clear winner.
I rather liked the makeup of my team. The cheap Warden prison-cars make for great expendable vehicles, whilst the digger on the ute has a lot of potential as well, using the new Grabber-Arm weapon. However I am rather drawn to a team of five cheap prison cars with plenty of explosives on board. As each one dies it will damage and destroy opposition vehicles, but with five of them one is sure to outlive all of the other vehicles on the field.