The Last Drifters – objects in the rearview may kill you!!
Well after over a year of writing and playtesting I have at last finished my post-apocalyptic car battles game, and the Last Drifters is now done!
A friend suggested that I write a rule set to cover car battles in a possible near future, something along the lines of the Mad Max films.
At this time I had only ever played games of GW’s Dark Future and had no real experience of any other games in this genre, even though I knew there were many available.
I had liked customising cheap hotwheels and matchbox vehicles for Dark Future and it was part of the fun of this type of game, but for me the rules were not simple enough even though you moved the vehicles on a grid system.
So at the start I looked at some of the other rules that were around and found that most of them were pretty good, but I found that I wasn’t happy with all of their mechanics, some parts I found interesting and really good, but on the whole were not the sort of games I wanted to play.
The first thing I did after looking at all the rules I could find was to sit down and scribble a list of all the things that I wanted to see in the game, things like vehicles, weapons, equipment etc. and then all the things that would be needed to allow the vehicles to move and interact with each other and their environment… it was a big list!!
But from that list I started to put everything together and then hit a problem, how was I going to move the vehicles? And control their manoeuvers?
The main thing that I did not want was to have this game played on any type of grid system nor did I want to have any vehicles tied to a road only.
I wanted this to be an open play game with the vehicles able to move freely on or off any roads.
And like my other games I wanted just one movement template that included the fire arc template as well.
This took me a long while to finalise, but I did it and the game uses just the one simple template to cover it all.
I also wanted to continue with the D20 system of range and shooting so that has been put into the Last Drifters as well allowing for simple shooting in the game.
The main thing about the rules is they are meant to be reasonably simple giving a fairly fast fun game, I didn’t want to be looking up huge charts or lists just to play with a few little cars, and although the Last Drifters does have one or two small charts they are very basic and easy to learn.
After the first draft of the rules was done I spent lots of time with a few old cars on the table playtesting, obviously I found problems with some of the rules, so I went back and adjusted what needed adjusting and began the playtesting again and again.
I spent several months like this continually trying to get all the rules to flow right and work well, and well finally the Last Drifters worked and was ready for its final setting out on the pages of the rule book.
What’s in the rules?
Within the rules there are a selection of vehicles that can be used in their basic form or they can be upgraded as the player wishes, these upgrades include weapons, armour and extra systems for the vehicles to help with control and safety.
The print-out section has datasheets for several vehicle types such as cars, bikes, pick-ups, vans and trucks, plus passive weapon markers like oil and smoke etc. all of which can be printed out for you to use in your games.
Also explained in the rules are different ways to play the Last Drifters, these allow the Last Drifters to be played as a simple race game around a circuit of some kind, or it can be played as a destruction derby style game where you try and survive as long as you can.
Then of course there is the simple battle style game where two forces meet and fight to settle their differences, plus there are several scenarios in the rules to test your vehicles and drivers.
All the vehicles have their own datasheets that once printed out and put into sleeves you can use dry-wipe markers to keep track of the vehicles upgrades, weapons, speed and damage etc. during the game.
What do you need to play?
You don’t need much, other than a couple of toy cars ( maybe with a little customising with weapons etc. ) a few dice, almost everything else you need is in the rule book.
What’s in the future?
There is a short “background” in the rules which covers the drifters and the wasteland and some of the people and things you can find there, this I am hoping will be expanded in future supplements.
Also I will be looking at releasing “Individuals” these will be people like drifters or gang members and a few others, all with their own backgrounds and vehicles that can be used as premade special characters in your games.
And on the list for the future are possible new weapons and vehicle upgrades, and of course more scenarios.
If you wish to contact me about the Last Drifters or have any questions or feedback then you can contact me by email – firstname.lastname@example.org
If you think you might be interested in these rules you can buy them from here – https://www.wargamevault.com/product/345017/The-Last-Drifters