Autoduel QuarterlyVolume 3Issue 2


By John Nowak
"Bigmouth" is a scenario for one player and a referee. The player should design a vehicle for $25,000 or less. Do not tell the player what's ahead, or give him any hint about the scenario at all, so that he will be forced to design a general-purpose vehicle instead of a single-mission special.

Set up a few straight, clean road sections, and have the player start cruising at 70 mph (yes, he's got to go 70; tell him he's got to be somewhere at a particular time). About 25" ahead, he spots a small convoy of three vehicles - a Ram Tonto in the center lane in front, a Morningstar in the center lane three inches behind the Tonto, and a Piranha three inches behind the Morningstar, also in the center lane. They are all going 55 mph.

The player, true to highway etiquette, should radio ahead and request permission to pass. Instead of an equally-polite response and compliance, the convoy rudely refuses and threatens to "blow your kiddie-car all over the pavement if you come within 50 yards." If the player decides not to attack, that's the end of the scenario, so the referee could tell the player that he recognizes the voice on the radio.

Riding in the Morningstar (and broadcasting the threats) is Harold Caswell, America's most hated sportscaster. he has been killed eight times in the past by irate duellists; Gold Cross has kept him alive and paranoid. He's afraid to fly, even though the network has offered him his own helicopter (it's cheaper in the long run than cloning). so, he relies on the Morningstar (and its Driver +3, Gunner +1 chauffeur) and disposable escort cars. Everyone in the convoy wears body armor, and Caswell has improved body armor. Caswell's chauffeur carries three grenades and a heavy pistol. Caswell will not fight - he's too scared.

When the convoy is threatened from the rear (like now), the Tonto will move to the left to get behind the attacker so it can use its RR. The Morningstar will move into the right lane and accelerate away, while the Piranha will manoeuver to block the line of fire between the attacker and the Morningstar for as long as possible - then it will brake violently to get a HR shot at the attacker.

The convoy escorts exist solely to defend the Morninstar. The Morningstar's chauffeur will not provide support for his escorts and will fire only at vehicles which have fired upon it. In the event of an attacker from the rear (like this on), the minedropper will be set on automatic after the Piranha is no longer directly behind the Morningstar.

The escort drivers are not prepared to sacrifice their lives for Caswell, and will try to get away if the armor on one side of their vehicle is completely destroyed. The drivers of the two escort vehicles are Driver +1, Gunner. The two gunners are Driver, Gunner +1.

The convoy is being followed at a discreet distance by the newscopter of a rival network. They have reported six of Caswell's deaths as part of the lighter side of news. This fight will count for prestige as though it were an arena combat - if the player succeeds in killing Caswell, prestige will be doubled, and he will receive a $500 bounty (and certificate of merit) from the national AADA headquarters for making that organization's options about Caswell felt. Make no doubt about it, though - Caswell will be back. However, he can't afford to carry grudges against the people who kill him (there are too many!), so the player need not fear retribution.

If the player succeeds in killing Caswell, he should get congratulations from NPC drivers and truckers he encounters for the next few months. he should get some sort of positive reaction bonus for all sorts of negotiation and bargaining (again, for a few months - not forever).

Vehicle Stats

Ram Tonto - Luxury, x-hvy. chassis, super power plant, hvy. suspension, 4 solid tires, driver, gunner, RR front, MG back, 2 MDs linked (one right, one left), fire extinguisher, 2 targeting computers, spare tire, LD radio. Armor: F40 (with ram plate), R25, L25, B35, T20, U25. Accel. 5, HC 3, 6,575 lbs; $21,200.

Morningstar - Luxury, x-hvy. chassis, super power plant, hvy. suspension, 4 solid tires, driver, 2 passengers, turreted laser, MD rear, fire extinguisher, hi-res computer. Armor: F40 (with ram plate), R25, L25, B20, T30, U20. Accel. 5, HC 3, 6,500 lbs; $37,000.

Piranha - Luxury, hvy. chassis, large power plant, hvy. suspension, 4 PR tires, driver, gunner, RL front, 3 MGs, each with extra magazine (one each, right, left, and back), HR front, fire extinguisher. Armor: F30, R25, L25, B30, T20, U20. accel. 5, HC 3, 5,995 lbs; $13,650.

This situation will also work as an encounter during a long Convoy or "Badlans Run" -style adventure. If the three cars are threatened from the front or by a roadblock, the Tonto will veer into the left lane, and accelerate towards the threat. The Piranha will move into the right lane and also accelerate towards the threat. The Piranha will move into the right lane and also accelerate (to match the Tonto). The Morningstar will brake, do a bootlegger turn, and run in the direction it came from.

Issue 3/2 Index

Steve Jackson Games * Car Wars * ADQ Index