IntroductionAny reader of my earlier articles should have realised that I'm a great fan of game aids for the various systems that I play. This is mostly because I host games for a large and varied group of youngsters at the Helensburgh games club; it's much easier to have pre-prepared collections of the information needed for each type of situation. You've already seen my designs for ATZ character cards. At some point in the future I may describe my Encounter cards (though that's still a work-in-progress). For now, here's another of my ATZ game aids: event cards.
Random Events in ATZThe basic rules for All Things Zombie: Better Dead Than Zed (ATZ) has a section on random events (p.52). This is great, but I find that in the middle of a hectic game it's not easy to find the right table, even if I can remember in which rulebook the table is located. In any case, I feel the need to tinker by adding new events of my own and also removing or adjusting ones that don't work so well for me.
So here's what I've done: a card has been created for each event. Each card has a full description of the event it represents as well as a picture to give it some flavour. All we need to do when a random event is indicated is draw a card and read the result. Simple!
Production MethodSo far, I've produced the cards as PowerPoint files with 9 cards to each A4 sheet. These are printed onto thin card which is then laminated and cut. Warning: it's remarkably difficult to align the front and backs of cards on a cheap home printer! To counter against errors in registration, it's best to produce designs where it won't matter if the front and the back of the sheet are printed several millimeters differently from each other.
My goal is to collect enough events to make it worthwhile making a custom deck through Artscow or a similar service. They will print a deck of playing cards with your own images for both the back and for each front for a fairly reasonable price. Also, they often have promotions with deep discounts, if you can wait for the right deal to come around! However, since a standard deck has 54 cards (52 suits plus 2 jokers), I still have many more events to collect. If anyone cares to share their ideas for new entries then I'd be more than happy to hear them!
The CardsSo, with no more ado, here are the designs for the cards. Most of these are for the standard random events from ATZ:BDTZ, but I've added some of my own. If you're sharp then it is possible to spot several of these events occurring in my ATZ campaign games so far:
Here are some extra events for which I haven't yet designed any cards. In some cases, I haven't even thought through the effects properly and the event is just a title (for now):
- Nearest zombie to a random character is recognised as a loved one. The character must take the "zed or no zed" test immediately (even if they've taken and passed it before).
- The street lights go out (or come on). [what effect would this have?].
- A door, window, fence or barricade fails and presents no further obstacle to zombies. Either it was poorly made or the weight of zombies collapsed it. Or maybe the zeds just found a way around/over/under it...
- All quiet: from now on all rolls to attract more zombies have a -1 modifier to the dice roll.
- Thousands of them! From now on all rolls to attract more zombies have a +1 modifier to the dice roll.
Update: I've posted a quick experiment with the card style here: http://colgar6.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/atz-event-cards-updated-style.html .
Update 2: the finished deck of ATZ event cards is described here.