Having looked back, we left off with the death of Boris, our friendly store-room salesman, at the hands of a group of twenty seven zombies, and now having scrambled back through my notes and my map, I can inform you that the next step was into a lift at the end of the corridor. Following swift deaths of the seven zombies hidden within, I struggled to get the buttons taking me to the castles different levels to work, seemingly only being able to access the 1st floor. Exploring this area took me into another ornately furnished bedroom, a number of letters were found, all addressed to ‘Amy Fletcher’, the girl in the pendant I had found earlier. It transpired that Amy had moved here from New York as a cook, these letters from her Aunt Helen showed increasing concern as Amy’s letters had apparently become more frantic as she uncovered the macabre goings on at the castle. Along with the letters was a diary, similarly starting with enthusiasm, the diary entries descended into fear and confusion over the the uncovering of Gingrich Yurr’s horrific plans. Thankfully, her scrappy notes also included a trick to getting the lift controls to work correctly.
Turns out though that I had certainly gained the attention of Mr. Yurr and his undead cronies by assisting in the detonation of his clock tower, running around on the roof of his castle and jumping on his bed. Yurr himself and a ‘human’ shield of four zombies were waiting for me on the ground floor! Zombie shields don’t last long though and as the final one fell, Yurr pushed one holding a grenade as I frantically closed the doors. The flak jacket that I absolutely, definitely was wearing… …took the blast and I continued my descent down the lift shaft to the basement.
This particular area was one I would spend a significant time in as the story starts to come to its climax, certain areas being reused and revisited under different circumstances. My first task though was to find out whose footsteps I could hear approaching. Naturally, they belonged to a small group of zombies, the part I hadn’t expected was that one of them was Boris! Seemingly, he kept some humanity as he reminded me to ‘kill them all’, so I duly took his advice and blew his head off. Taking an exit from the basement corridors I was in a fridge area filled with hanging meat, a short moment later and a chainsaw wielding zombie decided to emerge from the hanging carcasses, but I soon relieved her of her weapon, earning myself a 2D6+3 monster.
On emerging the fridge, I discovered a human, the same blonde girl I had seen previously in the locket, running from a pack of zombies and through a door. After cleaning up her mess by killing the pursuit, I convinced her that I was friendly and got her to open the door up.
The idea that all of Yurrs zombies had to be killed was reiterated by her (I could see where the end-game ‘puzzle’ may be heading) as well as the idea that Yurr was set to turn himself into a zombie. We took the time to explore the room though, which turned out to be Yurrs office and study area. A nice Easter Egg was put in here, a short birthday note reading ‘Happy 30th Zagor’ was signed by Yurr and left in his desk; of couse, Zagor is a certain warlock from Firetop Mountain. Only one useful tidbit came from the office and that was the location of a hidden emergency exit, Amy seemed to know where to go and so this was our next destination. However, things got a little silly first, with the sudden arrival of Zombie Kong, a hulking zombie, complete with Donkey Kong style tie, that was supposedly the undead darling of Professor Roznik, the head scientist behind Yurrs plans. Amy helped me take him down with her pistol, which is just as well as he hit HARD.
Taking a left out of the study area into the original corridor I entered, we made our way to what was the location of the emergency exit we recently learned of, using an electronic key pad, a hidden door opened and Amy was finally able to make her escape. I gave her back the pendant I found and sent her on her way as I still had zombies to kill. After we parted ways, I stumbled across a telescope which looked out across the courtyard, still crawling with zombies. Looking through it, I found the telescope pointing up at a balcony where Gingrich Yurr was apparently getting pissed…
…although on actually reading the text, he was apparently sitting with a Browning machine gun whilst simultaneously drinking and injecting zombie infected blood into himself. Yurr is totally metal. What followed was a detailed description of his transformation into a zombie and my sharp exit. Another big cheese was then encountered as back in the corridors of the basement I had apparently found the laboratory area as through some rubber swing doors I could see a bunch of scientists, including Professor Rosnik.
The chance for a ruse presented itself as I had nicked a white lab coat earlier from Yurrs bedroom, so in I wandered pretending to be one of them. The ruse quickly fell apart though, not because I was rumbled, but because I essentially lost patience, pulled a gun on them and locked them in some nearby vacant cells. The laboratory held a number of containers full of what appeared to be the inflected blood, the source of the outbreak, so this was safely disposed of, as were a large number of zombies. Leaving the area through a nearby door though managed to trigger a fire alarm and got me chased up a flight of stairs by a huge group of zombies back up to the roof. Sailing across the zombie infested courtyard on a zip-wire, I landed in the balcony where I earlier saw Yurr transforming, complete with Browning machine gun (2D6+15!), which went something like this –
A huge amount of zombies fell, a silly amount, but not all of them as Yurr appeared across the courtyard to the sound of an air-raid sired with an even bigger toy than my Browning, a bazooka, which he launched at the balcony I was firing from. Jumping, I managed to avoid the blast, landing in the courtyard, but having been caught off-guard, all my belongings except for a handgun had been left up on the balcony and destroyed.
Not long after, I heard the sound of a car engine as I approached the castle garage and was greeted by the sight of Yurr in his Austin Healey, barely able to remember how to drive, lurching out at high speed, racing towards me. Taking a few pot shots at the car, a lucky shot hit Yurr and sent the car crashing into the castle, up in flames and then into an explosion. Relief was short-lived though, as any good or bad horror movie will tell you, he isn’t dead yet, and true to form a burned, blackened zombie Yurr came stumbling out of the wreckage only to be beaten to death by my own bare fists. Grabbing a nearby bicycle, I got the hell out of there. On the way back, I came across Amy, walking along the road-side and we headed towards a nearby village together and the mythical page 400.
Now, 400 did not represent the true end of the book… the idea of killing EVERY zombie was a very literal one as the zombie tally I recorded was to be translated directly into a page number. Unfortunately, my tally did not provide me with a relevant passage and so I was forced to get what must be considered the ‘bad’ ending. Zombies leaked from Goraya Castle, rampaging through the countryside and infecting locals, their numbers would rise back up and by morning light I was finally to become one of them myself. My adventure was over.