The Walking Dead...

Fall Scenario Tour Stop 3:  The Walking Dead at Splatbrothers

Who won the zombie war?  
Nobody, it was a DEAD tie!

In the case of the third stop on the fall scenario tour, the zombie war, while close, was not a tie.  Splatbrothers Paintball Park hosted their 36 hour October zombie-fest patterned after AMC’s hit apocalyptic serial The Walking Dead.  The infected battled survivors in a game with more twists than a box of rotini.  The action actually started Friday night with night missions on the famous tower field (a massive trench/bunker complex dominated by three catwalk-connected towers) for those who arrived early enough to get in on the action.  Capital Offense trickled in as the night progressed, and when Saturday morning’s game-on rolled around, we hit the field hungry for brains.

What did the zombie say before the fight?  
“Do you want a piece of me?”

While Splatbrothers has been a mainstay on the scenario scene for a decade, the producers reshaped the field for this game by drawing an imaginary river through the property, forcing players to cross at bridge points, thus shifting the fight to new parts of the field.  Even the teams who regularly play Splatbrothers had to read the lay of the land in new ways for this game.

Splatbrothers Monster - 
The guardian of the Splatbrothers Paintball Park Beware! 

In addition to regular scenario-type missions, players also had a wide-variety of standing objectives to keep them engaged in the event.  Zombies collected body parts and moved those to secure locations where they earned points every hour, while the human survivors rounded up food and medical supplies.  Additionally, players could find specialized hole punches on the field – another way of earning individual points for one’s side.  Teams could collect bridge pieces to combine and build a new span across the water, or they could raid enemy supplies to prevent them from earning points.  No matter a player’s experience or ability level, game producer Chad Rotella ensured that everyone could contribute.

Zombie Props - Walking Dead had props a plenty! 

 Capital Offense came out of the gates looking strong, punching a quick hole in the defensive line of the humans, but the survivors made quick counter punches that kept us on our heels.  While the producer threw us a curveball for the night game by lighting the area with powerful floodlights, the team adapted and scored points for the zombie faction, but it was Sunday when we really hit our stride.  Teamwork, playing styles, aggression, and communication – they all came together on Sunday.  Within the first hour we moved our lines beyond the river and took control of both the human ammo dump and their food repository.  Each of these sites would score points for every item they held, and before long those sites contained nothing.  While the rest of the zombie side kept busy with grabbing points, Capital Offense played the role of shot blocker and denied humans their chances to score.

Foolybear in the Tower - 
Survivors closing in on all sides and only zombie foolybear left to defend the tower.

To keep teams from camping the spawn points of each side, the producer built in uncrossable safe zones, and while a good base kill is satisfying, we also found it fun to steadily take ground until we reached the line.  The humans still had a way to escape, but that required a long flanking hike through the woods.  Team Capital Offense and others on the zombie side kept steady pressure on the humans until mid afternoon.  Unfortunately the team couldn’t stick around for the final battle, scheduled for late on Sunday.  Some of us had 500 miles to go and work on Monday morning, so when we left the field it wasn’t long before we heard the humans rallying and pushing away from their safe zone.  Saturday was a back-and-forth battle between equal forces, but on Sunday it all clicked and the zombie side felt unstoppable – at least until mid afternoon.

Brian Radford - 
Capital Offense's front line fighter, Brian Radford, looks for another survivor to slay. 

Foolybear on the Frontlines

After slugging it out in the tower field and around the barnyard, I decided to end my day on Sunday by fighting through the thick woods near the enemy base.  I still had five medic punches on my card, and with a medic nearby, I came ready to stand toe-to-toe with whatever the survivors threw at me.  And I have to admit, they dished it out!  I took four eliminations within 15 minutes, but my medic punches kept me in the fight as I steady zapped my way through patrols coming from their insertion.  Finally, confronted with an overwhelming group, I tried to conceal myself in the weeds and wait for a chance to ambush.  Before that happened though, my teammates appeared on the scene and engaged in a massive firefight.  In the midst of the shooting, one of my own teammates stepped on my leg and jumped back, completely surprised.  How’s that for an effective camo pattern?  Thanks for the HDE uniform Planet Eclipse!

Covering the bases - 
Capital Offense ran players to the top of the tower, leaving foolybear to defend the entry at the base. 

Follow foolybear on Twitter (@foolybear) and Instagram (foolybear) and keep up with his game calendar here.  The fourth stop on his Fall Scenario Tour was the Fulda Gap Mega Game.  His last adventure of the year will be Santa Vs. The Grinch at Line-of-Fire Paintball.