Locust Life by John Gordon
Xóchitl’s heart pumped hard with excitement as her crew closed in on their prey grazing among the ruins of some long dead settlement. Sure, the prey were only capybaras, but Xóchitl’s hunting party had been foraging for a few days without much success, and these furry sacks of meat would be a boon for her tribe. If she could wrestle one down and bring it back, she would earn a place in the next hunting party, and eventually, a chance to prove herself in real battle. Inglorious as they were, the capybaras were her path away from the drudgery of “Locust Life.” The young, untested members of Xóchitl’s tribe were obligated to perform duties unbecoming of blooded warriors. Freedom from that demeaning life was all every Locust dreamed of achieving. Xóchitl was going to bag her capybara.
Hunkering down beside vine-snarled and rusted barricades, Xóchitl’s party silently observed three of the meter-long creatures grunting and clicking as they munched on the tall grasses sprouting up through cracked cement of the settlement’s courtyard. Rong-kar, the crew’s leader and most revered bezerker, shoved Wunda, another Locust, roughly forward and pointed at the closest capybara.
Xóchitl fumed silently as Wunda was chosen first. The boy not much younger than Xóchitl, was wide-eyed as he pulled himself over the barricade and ran full-tilt at the chubby capybara. The capybaras reacted to Wunda’s sudden appearance with a series of panicked barks, but it wasn’t until the boy was a few meters away that Xóchitl saw movement from behind a ruined building across the courtyard. A dark-robed figure was sprinting after one of the other capybaras—Xóchitl’s crew was not alone!
“Reclaimer filth!” Rong-kar shouted as a second robed figure emerged from behind a building and nearly caught hold of a fleeing capybara.
“Xóchitl, forward!” Rong-kar’s voice was sharp and sounded like he gargled with rocks. His rough hand knocked her forward, which awoke the latent drive in her legs. Like a boar with blinders, she lost sight of anything else but the giant brown rat in front of her. Her nimble legs pumped, carrying her past the twisted hulks of debris which littered the settlement and in short order brought her on the heels of Wunda.
Within arm’s reach of the capybara, Wunda instead turned slightly to his left and charged at one of the Reclaimers who was also chasing after a capybara. Wunda slammed into the Reclaimer with his knee, driving his leg into the Reclaimer’s chest. Both Wunda and the Reclaimer sort of bounced off one another and fell to the ground before scrabbling around, regaining their feet, and fighting awkwardly. Xóchitl pitied Wunda in that moment, as he flailed at the Reclaimer ineffectually. The scared bark of the capybara less than a meter from Xóchitl snapped her focus away from Wunda as she eagerly dove for the fat rat.
Xóchitl fell just out of reach of the capybara, which sprinted away from her barking and grunting all the way. Xóchitl gave chase getting within centimeters of the beast but not quite able to lay hand on the creature.
Out of sight, Xóchitl heard the sounds of battle, including the foreign crack of what she would later learn was laser fire—a cowardly weapon favored by the Reclaimers which was silent and could burn a hole through a person. Her foot race with the plump capybara took her along the settlement’s perimeter, away from her crew and the fighting. The startled rat grunted and choked as it ran, and Xóchitl pushed her endurance to the limit sprinting after the damned meat sack.
In a stroke of luck, the beast stumbled over some debris, giving Xóchitl a chance to close the gap and fall forward onto the fuzzy creature and driving them both into the ground. It squealed and snorted, spit and snot flying from its twitching nose, but Xóchitl held firmly onto the squirming capybara. In moments she was able to carefully regain her feet, holding the rat, which was nearly as long as she was tall, in a haphazard choke hold. Looping one arm across its fleshy belly Xóchitl began running with her prize back to her crew.
When she returned to the courtyard the battle was over. Wunda and Rong-kar were unconscious but seemingly breathing. Leopold, the crew’s other bezerker, was limping after the retreating Reclaimers, shouting curses and threats about his virility and their mothers.
For Xóchitl nothing mattered except for the squirming captive in her arms and the satisfaction of knowing she was on her way to leaving the Locust Life behind.
Hello everyone! Welcome to the first in a series of video demos of Wreck-Age game scenarios. Today's scenario is: Rat Patrol -- a short encounter using two 100 RU crews as they attempt to wrangle a herd of capybara.
What follows is a short video of our very own Matthew Sears running a Drifter crew against the great Joshua Lopatin's Reclaimer crew. Shenanigans ensue as the two crews need to decide whether or not to focus on capturing the capybaras for food, or fending off the interlopers with violence. In Matt and Josh's cases, violence was really a series of silly, ineffectual slaps!
Below the video please find the full scenario rules, which can be ran with any crew type in the Wreck Age setting.
The midday sun is beating down on a group of capybara you have been tracking when you spot another group going after your quarry. Your community is depending on you to come back with some of the docile rodents to either fill the pens or the foodstuffs. Now that your perfect ambush has been foiled you will have to close in now and maybe even fight over who takes home the beasts!
What you need to play: Play area 2’x2’ with a small winding river through the center which acts as Difficult Terrain. Three capybara objective markers and four small pieces of terrain will also be necessary.
Starting Forces: 100 RU Using Any Wreck Age Faction
Initial setup: The players roll initiative. The player with the higher initiative places one capybara 6” of the center of the board within the riverbed. That player then places two pieces of terrain within 12” of any table edge but not within 6” of another piece of terrain.
Secondary setup: The player with the secondary higher initiative then places another capybara within 6” of the first capybara but not within 3” of another capybara. That player then places the final capybara within 9” of another capybara but not within 3” of a capybara. That player then places two pieces of terrain within 12” of any table edge but not within 6” of another piece of terrain.
Final Setup: The player with the higher initiative then chooses a corner of the table and sets up within 4” of that, then the player with the second highest Initiative chooses a different table edge and sets up within 4” of that. Chosen table edges may be adjacent.
Primary Win Condition: Incapacitated or tied capybara taken off the board are worth 25 RU. Tying up a capybara is an opposed Power Check.
Secondary Win Conditions: Any capybara that is killed is less valuable to your community. Dead capybara that are taken off the board are worth 15 RU.
Turn Limits: The scenario ends after 4 turns.
Special Rules: Starting with the second turn the capybara trundle towards the nearest table edge using their movement attribute +d6 as if they are attempting to run. If they are incapacitated or tied then they will of course not be able to make this movement.