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Welcome back to the solo campaign playthrough of Steamforged Games' Resident Evil 2: The Board Game!
In scenario 1A of our solo campaign, Leon generally breezed through the zombie hoards roaming the streets of Raccoon City, and made it through the doors of the Raccoon City Police Department. He ended the scenario with an extra shotgun, although one point of health was lost to an unfortunate zombie bite en-route. However, scenario 1A was the tutorial mission, and scenario 2A promises to put our hero in some genuine peril!
Scenario 2A doesn't quite throw the players in at the deep end, but it certainly gives them a knowing little push in that direction. We're now including two floors - which can only be accessed through the stairwell tile - and locked rooms - which can only be unlocked using keys gathered from the item decks. Item chests are now included, which allow storage of items for later scenarios, freeing up potentially vital inventory space. We also now feature the encounter mechanism, which is the reason behind the colour coded rooms...
From scenario 2A onwards, whenever a character steps into a red or yellow coloured room for the first time, this room is unexplored territory. By rolling a D6 and comparing the result to the corresponding Encounter Dice Table, the player finds out what horrors are waiting in store for them!
And finally we have an additional enemy type: the Licker. Fans of the videogame will recognise these as being highly damaging and tough to kill. Fortunately there's only one on the starting board, but there's always the possibility of more appearing!
So with the slightly more elaborate board set up, it's time to head for... The S.T.A.R.S. Office! Using the campaign rules, Leon's handgun has been fully reloaded, and the shotgun is now up to 6 shells out of the maximum 7.
"With eerily quiet halls, it seems the Raccoon City Police Department won't be the sanctuary you once hoped for. The streets outside are overrun, though, so your only choice is to explore deeper within the RPD building and try to meet up with any other survivors. With hesitant steps, the search begins..."
Entering the first room, the roll on the encounter table goes well. Leon is forced to make an evade roll or forfeit the rest of the turn, but passes without problem. Then, suddenly...
...for the second successive scenario, the first card drawn from the Tension Deck is Echoes in the Darkness. This particular Leon does seem to be cursed by this card! Fortunately, he's in a clear room so has enough actions in the next turn to be able to get out of the room before it takes effect.
Leon soon runs into the big threat on the board: the Licker! With a big map to explore, the decision is made to conserve ammo and attempt to run past! The first attempt fails, and Leon takes another point of damage, but the second attempt sees him dart past, hopefully able to put this tonguey menace behind him for the moment.
A few turns in, and things start to look bad for Leon! After an unlucky room exploration he takes another hit of damage, just managing to escape the two zombies inside at the end of the turn...
...or so he thought...
Another yellow card appears from the Tension deck, instantly bringing those two very same zombies straight through onto Leon's square!
He'll now start the next turn low on health and facing a tough decision: turn and run, or stand and fight?
After a successful pair of attack rolls he killed one zombie and knocked back the second, buying enough breathing room to get into the next room and slam the door closed! A brief moment of unhindered room-searching followed, furnishing Leon with a much needed handgun clip and some healing herbs, before he made his way up to the second floor.
One easily-avoided zombie later, and Leon finds himself in a quiet corridor right outside the S.T.A.R.S. office. Unfortunately, not only does he not have the office key, but he doesn't even have the key to the room which contains the office key! Looks like this mission's going to have to continue!
Another room search and 2 more zombie kills later, the Spade Key has still not been found, meaning there's only one possible remaining place for it! At this point, the Tension Deck is half way depleted, meaning at least one of those dreaded red cards is approaching.
About. Damn. Time! Now, with a green herb used to restore a point of health, and another ammo clip used to reload the handgun, it's time to get back down to the first floor. The Tension Deck is now half depleted, so we're almost guaranteed to hit a red at any moment now!
After heading back upstairs there are 3 possible locations where the key to the S.T.A.R.S. office might be hiding; one is accessed through a clear room, and the other two are behind a door guarded by that Licker from earlier! Leon crosses his fingers and heads to the easier location...
Using the Spade Key to unlock the door, Leon steps inside the room and the Encounter Table drops a zombie right on top of the item. With no time to waste, he takes aim with his shotgun, blowing the zombie apart and clearing the room. He heads to the corner of the room, inspects the item...
YASSSS!!! Finally the odds are in Leon's favour! Now there's just a single zombie between him and the S.T.A.R.S. office, but of course those red cards are still lurking amongst the final 10 in the Tension Deck!
Leon heads up the stairs. The zombie still waits for him, but with a spare ammo clip still in reserve, he unloads 3 shots with the handgun. The zombie isn't killed, but it's enough to push the creature back, allowing Leon to get past and into the corridor with the S.T.A.R.S. office! Safety is in sight!
Just one more draw from the Tension Deck, and in the next turn Leon can get through the door and the scenario is complete!
...well this changes things.
Leon slams the door to keep out the zombie behind him, and uses another precious shotgun shell to blow the first zombie dog to pieces! The second lunges at him, but he dodges past and throws open the door to the S.T.A.R.S. office.
With no actions left this turn, the zombie dog is able to move onto Leon's space, readying for an attack on the next turn. Will the final draw of the Tension Deck go easy on our hero?
It does! Knowing that a free handgun reload comes between scenarios in the campaign, Leon unloads on the remaining zombie dog. It's not enough to kill the beast, but it pushes it back enough to allow Leon through the door and into the S.T.A.R.S. office at long last!
The win condition for this scenario is for all of the characters to be inside the office, and for no enemies to be on that tile, meaning that Leon has successfully completed the scenario!
Following the campaign rules, Leon's handgun is completely reloaded, and the shotgun gets 3 new shells. The green herb in his inventory is used to heal another point of damage, as it would have to be discarded at this point if left unused. All other ammo items are removed from the inventory, as well as quest items (in this case, the two door keys). This leaves Leon in generally quite a strong position for taking on Scenario 3A: Heading Back to Marvin.
Once again, we hope you've enjoyed following Leon's exploits! Come back soon to see how he fares as the campaign continues and the risks increase!
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