Saturday, December 03, 2011


Kingston. Jamaica. 5th March. 1937.

Sitting on the veranda, sipping a gin and tonic and watching the shipping in the harbour
below, Sir Robert Bullington-Smedley, MI6 section chief for the Carribean, is having a lazy day. Every so often, the annoyingly efficient signals officer; Lieutenant Bradfield interupts his maritime surveillance but the equally efficient Corporal Baker, who stands ever ready with the gin bottle, counterbalances these annoyances. Sir Robert glances at his watch. His day is almost done and all that remains now is the impending visit from London’s top agent, Daniel Mansfield. In the valley beyond the plantations, a single motor car can be seen racing its way up the road, drawing ever nearer. Lieutenant Bradfield returns with another sheet of paper.
”Sir, here are the latest French shipping forecasts from the Admiralty.”
Sir Robert accepts the paper without much enthusiasm then points to the approaching vehicle with his now empty glass.
”This will be Mansfield I presume” he states. Corporal Baker steps forward and silently refills the glass.
”Yes sir. Would you like to see him or shall I deal with him?”
Sir Robert turns his eyes on the young Lieutenant and regards him. There can be no question of allowing an uninitiated person to hear what Mansfield will have to report, but Sir Robert is sorely tempted. He takes a distracted sip of his drink and then dimisses both Bradfield and Baker. Somethings cannot be avoided.

When Daniel Mansfield arrives, Sir Robert shows little indication of having drunk any alcohol. His manner is crisp and alert and his eyes regard the younger man with considerable interest. As Mansfield delivers his report, Sir Robert remains silent until he is finished.
”So your saying the Kingpin escaped?” he asks. Mansfield shrugs.
”We really can’t be sure I’m afraid. We killed all those whom we found, but one or two did get away. None of them would surrender either so we were obliged to forfeit any opportunity for questioning them and since we had no intelligence on what this Kingpin character actually looks like, then we have no way of being sure. I’m inclined to believe we didn’t kill him.”
”You almost certainly didn’t. He’s a slippery character. Would you like a drink?”
Daniel Mansfield accepts a drink and settles back in his chair. The view of the harbour below is soothing but his mind is a turmoil with questions.
”So you’ve had dealings with him before?” he asks
”Some” the older man replies. ”We’ve been monitering various activities in this region which indicate his group is connected to others in South America”
”Other groups like his?”
Both men share a pensive glance. Sir Robert shakes his head slowly.
”What do you mean?”
”Well Sir Robert, if I am to be blunt. I’m not much of a head piece when it comes to biology, but I can certainly tell the different between a man and a cauliflower!”
Sir Robert sits perfectly still.
”Plant people?”
Mansfield raises his eye brows; ”You’ve heard of them before?”
”I’ve read reports, but they were old. I thought they were all dead and gone. I’m surprised...” Sir Robert stands up and glances about. He indicates to Mansfield to follow him and the two men walk slowly into the gardens which lie below the house.
”I’m not sure about your security classification” he continues, ”but I presume London acted in ignorance. The plant people haven’t been on the cards for a good long while now.”
”Who ...or rather what are they?” Mansfield asks.
”No one really knows who they are” Sir Robert replies. ”They’ve been around for a very long time. The earliest reports indicate they were already in the Americas before Columbus arrived, but they were certainly here when Carrington met them in 1678. He’s said to have fought them several times, but could never take one alive.”
Mansfield shakes his head in wonder.
”You said you thought they were all dead and gone?”
”Yes. The last time they were reported was in Santiago de Cuba in the 1870’s. The Americans supposedly did away with a group of them there. They burned them rather than allow them to be seen.”
Mansfield nods his head.
”Thats understandable. I suppose they wanted to avoid panic or mass hysteria?”
”Possibly” Sir Robert nods, ”but I understand the Americans always burned the plant people so they couldn’t regenerate.”
”Well yes. They’re like plants you see. All it takes is for one root to survive...”
Mansfield stops and casts his mind back.
”Do you mean the worms? Were they actually roots?”
”I can’t say.” Sir Robert shrugs. ”The reports are sketchy. I’ve read about the worms, but I don’t know what they are or which function they might serve. I only know what I’ve read in a few old reports and those were mostly second hand accounts of American actions. I suppose its possible the Americans might know a lot more than we do, not least since the plant people apprently still exist on the American main land. Or at least they did until recently”
Mansfield smiles sardonically. He is about to speak again, when a distant hail interupts him. Both men turn to face Lieutenant Bradfield who is waving down at them from the veranda.
”Damn the man!” Sir Robert ejaculates. ”Whats so urgent that it can’t wait five minutes?”.
They watch as the young officer rushes down towards them, a slip of paper in his hand.
”I thought you might like to see this at once Sir” he pants, ”...since it is in regard to Mister Mansfield”
Sir Robert reads the message then smiles broadly.
”Well, well. Fortune smiles upon us. The intercept station at Waverly Point has picked up a transmission from the Kingpin. The message was coded, but the transmission came from a position roughly one hundred miles off Santiago de Cuba.”
Mansfield glances at his wrist watch.
”Our plane should be refuelled and ready to go by now. If we leave at once, we might catch him there!”
”Very good. I’ll get onto our local assets and see what help they can provide.”


Santiago de Cuba. 0200 hours. 6th March. 1937.

Having flown straight to Cuba, Daniel Mansfield and his companions have been provided with information by Sir Robert's local assets. The Kingpin’s boat arrived in Santiago only a few hours previously and is currently moored along side a German mechant ship on Pier 9.
Pier 9 is an older part of the harbour, where the hulking remains of nineteenth century infrastructure quietly rust amidst the bustle and rush of the larger harbour complex. There are three companies currently operating on the pier. Rheinfeldt Shipping, Sancho & Fernandez and the AGL Transport and Storage Company. Moored along side the quay is a German merchant ship, the MS Liselle.

It is pitch dark. The sky is over cast and it is raining. Hard.

”Steady on chaps”.
On a vantage point, overlooking the harbour, Daniel Mansfield, with the rain pouring down his helmet visor, beckons to his companions who gather around. ”This is the situation as it stands now; The building with all the lights at the end of the pier is the AGL Transport and Storage Company...”
”AGL?” George interupts. ”Ag Lata?”
”Quite possibly” Daniel replies. ”Thats their boat moored at the end of the pier.”
”The one that got away at Florida” Messnier states with satisfaction. ”This time we shall have him!”
”We will” Daniel agrees, ”But we have to move carefully. First of all, we’ll take up positions to make sure no one gets off that pier without we say so, then I’ll go forward with Dougal, Hamish, Vesper and Mr Smith...”
”I’ll come with you old man” Arthur Spencer says. ”I haven’t been of much use so far.”
Daniel nods, then turns to Mitchel.
”Joe, you and Marcel set up to cover both sides of the pier, and don’t let any one pass you by. Shoot to kill if you have to.”
Mitchel nods and Messnier grins.


Under the cover of darkness, the British agents move swiftly down to the dockyard and are taking up initial positions when suddenly there is a flare of head lights and three cars sweep by splashing through the water logged pot holes of the road.
”Who the hell is this?” Mitchell mutters angrily. ”They look like ginny hoods!”
”It seems like the Kingpin has guests” Daniel answers. ”Never mind. Keep going. We can’t afford to let him get away this time or we might never have another chance.”


Rocketman. Dougal. Hamish. Vesper. George Macarthur. Arthur Spencer.

‘Mad Dog’ Mitchell. Marcel Messnier. Mr Smith. Il Conte di Vulcano. Wu Foo.

The Kingpin. 2 x Armoured cultists. Fishing boat captain. Warehouse manager. 4 x German sailors

Don Vito Scarlatti. Gloria. Herman Rüling. 6 x Gangsters.



Players one and two start at the north edge of the table and have two rounds to get into position before the sudden appearance of Il Conte de Vulcano alerts the antagonists.

Players three and four begin at the south end of the pier. Player three must begin with no element no further than 12 inches from either the Kingpin or the fishing boat. The Kingpin begins the game, standing at the front of the AGL Transport and Storage Company warehouse. Player four begins any where on the southern half of the pier, except for Don Vito, Gloria and Herman Rüling who must all begin within six inches of the Kingpin.

In round three, Il Conte de Vulcano and Wu Foo arrive in their sports car. They drive onto the table top at speed, but immediately skid to a stop in between the buildings of Rheinfeldt Shipping and Sancho & Fernandez.



All out door areas are Good, except the sea which is Impassable. The interior of the buildings is Difficult, except in the storage areas which are Rough.
The outer deck areas of the ship are Rough, except the main cargo deck which is Good. The ship interiors are Difficult.
The Fishing boat is Difficult.
The crane’s various platforms are Difficult.
Standing on, or climbing over crates is classed as Rough.


Victory Conditions

Either side wins automatically by defeating two thirds of the opposing side.


Special rules

Rocketman has four Hero Points in this game.

The crane is largely made of cast iron and steel plates and can give +2 cover if used to advantage. Lying on the roof gives +1 and and railings give no cover. Though old and rusty, the crane can also be started and used. It can be driven along its rails and the upper half can turn (at 45° per round). The crane can be disabled (the motor housing is not made of cast iron and can be penetrated by heavy small arms fire).

The warehouse has corrugated iron walls, backed by insulation. This would usually provide meager cover, but due to the packing cases, workshop and interior walls, firing through the building, or targetting elements concealed within, will not work. The warehouse functions as a normal building and gives up to +2 cover.

The plant people get a +2 bonus when shot at due to their physical form. They are not impervious to shock waves, explosions, or even punches. Their armoured uniforms also give them good protection.

All vehicles on the table can be driven, though if the car is being stolen, then a hot wiring roll against 5 must be rolled by any one except the Gangsters, Mad Dog Mitchell, George Macarthur, Mr Smith and Wu Foo who all roll against 4. Hot wiring takes one round, per die roll.



This game was played on Wednesday 23rd November. 2011.
Players were Jan, Goeg, Oleg and Palle.

Il Conte di Vulcano arrives

Players one and two began as directed by the scenario, moving into advantagous starting positions with Oleg (Rocketman, Hamish and Dougal) covering the western edge of the pier and Palle (Mitchell and Messnier) covering the eastern edge. Mitchell and Messnier were making their way towards the MS Liselle, intent upon taking control of its elevated firing potential when the sudden arrival of Il Conte de Vulcano alerted the antagonists. Screeching to a halt, lights ablaze, behind the cover the large Sancho & Fernandez building, Il Conte di Vulcano was hidden from view and though they became slightly more suspicious, the antagonsists did not react beyond moving one of their cars to cover the western side of the pier with its head lights.

Don Vito arrives to meet with the Kingpin

Since none of the bemused British had any idea who he was, Il Conte di Vulcano was obliged to introduce himself as a great Italian hero on a mission to fight the evil forces of fascism and crime, which was more or less the truth. He explained he was on Cuba specifically to thwart the endeavours of Don Vito Scarlatti (though he'd never heard of the Kingpin) and Rocketman suggested he join them in their assault. Il Conte agreed to this audacious plan and together with his faithful driver, Wu Foo, joined Mitchell and Messnier in their plan to grab the German freighter.

On board the freighter, the night watchmen had been alerted by the roaring engine and screeching of tyres of Il Conte's automobile and two of them had come to a railing to investigate. Mitchell however had already climbed aboard the ship and was making his way to come around the super structure to take the crew by surprise. Despite all this, the gangsters and the cultists at the end of the pier had yet to understand that they were under attack and they remained unaware until they realised they were being approached along the western edge of the pier, by men with guns. At this point, one of the gangsters and one of the kingpin's body guards, opened fire with automatic weapons and the battle began.

To the left, a gangster and a cultist open fire on George, Dougal & Hamish

Mitchell, Messnier and Il Conte carried on their assault on the freighter, with Mitchell bursting in upon two the crew and engaging in fisticuffs, whilst the other two night watchmen ran about the ship in confusion. Whilst this was going on, and whilst Dougal, Hamish and George Macarthur were facing the wild but largely ineffective gun fire on the western edge of the pier, Vesper had penetrated the Sancho & Fernandez building to establish that it was empty. She reached the upper most level and positioned herself in the cargo door way, ready to drop a grenade on to the the AGL building if needed. Arthur Spencer in the meanwhile had also sneaked forward. Under the darkness cast by the crane, he was trying, unsuccessfully to break into, and kick start, a small blue van which was parked on the eastern side of the Sancho & Fernandez building. This was tricky since he had no experience breaking into vehicles, and he was in direct line of sight of the gangsters. Luckily the darkness concealed him but he ultimately failed to break into the van.

Arthur Spencer fails to break into the blue van

Hamish and Dougal tried to rush forward but Hamish was forced to duck for cover and got left behind. Dougal tried to engage the suspected enemies inside the AGL Transport and Storage Company warehouse by firing through the rear wall of the building, but this proved fruitless, so instead he crept forward to where the gangsters had moved a car to act as a barrier along side the building.

Towards the end of the game, both sides were exchanging fire to little effect though the German ship had been taken. Mitchell and Messnier tried to engage the gangsters with sniper fire, but were unable to kill any one. Don Vito decided he'd had enough though and together with Gloria and a driver, jumped into his car and tried to flee the scene. Herman Rüling followed in his car. Neither made it off the table before Rocketman took to the air and strafed the Kingpin, downing him just as time ran out...

Don Vito (in the black car under the crane) attempts to flee

The game ended with no decisive winner. Though Rocketman downed the Kingpin, this was not a victory condition, and since the Kingpin was only 'downed' by bullets, he did not die. The battle hangs in the balance therefore, and continues in Chapter Four...

The table at the end of the game


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