Wednesday 10 October 2012

Scenario: "Terror on Tapu Island"

The Competition

Recently, "jimjackaman" organised a scenario-writing competition on the Lost World Safari Yahoo group.  Some of my readers may already be aware of this, but I put forward an entry and when the poll was taken, I won!  Now this wasn't a big competition and there aren't any prizes, but I'm still chuffed to bits about the result.

The full rules can be read here (I think even non-members of the group can see these).  Paraphrased, they go something like this "design a Lost World adventure in no more than 500 words, using 6 packs of miniatures from Bob Murch's 'Pulp Figures' range, of which at least 1 pack must be PLT 08 Saurian Predators".

You can see the shortlist of entries here (and some very good ideas are in them, too), but below is my own effort.  Note that I've dressed up the formatting a bit and added some images (sadly, not my own).  This was obviously not possible in the text-only Yahoo group format, but hey - I'm recording this for posterity.  Here goes...

Terror on Tapu Island

A Lost World adventure for 4 players


Somewhere in the South Pacific, a small island is tapu (forbidden) to the natives who live on the nearby, larger islands. Word has got round that there is something extraordinary to be found there and several bands of adventurers with different motivations have set off to discover the secret of Tapu Island!

Forces (from the Pulp Figures range, by Bob Murch)

  • Dinosaurs (non-player force): 2 packs of PLT 08 Saurian Predators

  • Big Game Hunters: 1 pack of PHP 08 Safari Into Danger (minus Jim Remington, the guide)
  • Film Crew: 1 pack of PHP 01 Film Crew (plus Jim Remington from PHP 08, above)
  • Seamen: 1 pack of PSS 03 Tramp Steamer Sailors
  • Natives: 1 pack of PSS 11 Melanesian Island Warriors


Tapu Island is a 4' square-ish tropical island, with narrow sandy beaches and rocky outcrops alternating along the outside and lush jungle filling much of the inside. There should be a few more open areas away from the coast, along with many narrow paths/game trails. A few small streams wouldn't go amiss and a tall waterfall with a pool at the base would be excellent!

Randomly position 12 counters at least 8" away from the coast. If a character gets line of sight to a counter then roll a d6: on a 1 it's a large dinosaur; on a 2 it's a small dinosaur; on any other roll it's just nerves. A revealed dinosaur, or a counter if there is anyone within 6" of it, will move straight towards the nearest person on a 1-3, straight away on a 4-5 or in a random direction on a 6. Counters move 6".

Each player's forces start on a different beach, having just disembarked from a small boat or canoe.

Special Rules

  • The Big Game Hunters win if they kill a dinosaur, take a trophy from the carcass (takes 1 character a whole turn) and then escape by boat.
  • The Film Crew win if they shoot at least 2 turns worth of film that includes a live dinosaur (roll "to hit" for the cameraman to take the shots) and then escape by boat.
  • The Seamen win if they capture a dinosaur and then escape by boat. One of the seamen has an endless supply of bottles of chloroform; throw these as a grenade, a hit renders the target unconscious for 1d3 turns. It takes 2 men to drag a captured small dinosaur or 4 men to drag a large one. Dragging a captive is done at half normal speed.
  • The Natives win if they prevent any of the white men from leaving the island, either by killing them or taking all the boats. The warriors have rubbed their bodies with the berries of the punga tree; this causes a dinosaur to ignore them in disgust on a d6 roll of 5+.
  • Random events could include goats (as bait), snakes and typhoons.


  1. Congrats on your win, Colgar. That's a nicely written scenario.

    1. Thanks. It's surprisingly had to keep to the word count - there's so much more that I wanted to include!

  2. Well done on the win. The scenario is great!

    1. Also thanks. It was a fun little competition.

  3. Congrats!
    And I agree, scenario is really top notch. I really like that different groups have different objective!

    1. It's possible for several (but not all!) of the groups to "win" simultaneously.

  4. Great scenario and congrats on the win; now when do we get to see you putit into action ?

    1. Ah, well now. I'd need to buy the figures and paint them. Also I'd need to make the island terrain, though I could re-use some of my jungle pieces and I intended to make some paths and streams anyway. I'd love to stage this, but it's a bit far away from what I have currently :-( .

  5. Not really my cup o tea, but you've just got to admire the sculpts on them figures and a very well done on the win as well!

    1. Yes, Bub Murch's sculpts pretty much define "Pulp", at least for 28mm miniatures. They're definitely on the wish list!