In this our final Part, we join the men of the 24th Regiment of Foot, in their most desperate hour. When the Zulu horde have breached the compound and stand just outside the Inner Barricade, baying for English blood.
Luckily the physical structure of Rorke’s Drift has been crafted into a channel that bottlenecks the Zulu ibutho and prevents their numbers from being an advantage. Much like the battle at Thermopylae.
Impi: The Chest moves 1 forward taking the Outer Barricade once again. As determined as ever, with a much reduced force, the Chest clambers out of the Hospital and back into the chaos of the Outer Barricade.
Action: I play the card “Steady Lads Steady”. Which when discarded during the draw phase, allows me to pick a grey card from the Discard Pile. Colour Sergeant Bourne steels his troops to the oncoming horde, plucking a little extra mettle from his boys.
Draw: I pick “Volley Fire by Ranks” from Discard Pile.
The end can’t be far away, with the Zulu Bull formation surrounding the wretched garrison.
Impi: The fresher Loins make a spirited dash forward to join the Chest and they move forward 3 spaces. Unfortunately, the Loins can’t get past the remnants of the Chest blocking the way into the Inner Barricade. The Loins lose a space of movement. Frustration seeps over the men of the Loins faces, as they simply can’t get past their beleaguered brothers.
Action: I play “Volley Fire by Ranks” firing close on Chest.
I roll 5 dice (6, 4, 4, 4, 1) delivering a sold hit and subsequently the Chest loses 1 Strength (1/5). With this action we lose -1 DRM Ammo. The lads let rip with their rifles, by rank. The smoke settles and it can be seen that the Chest formation has been severely decimated. Bodies lie piled about in the Outer Barricade, the Zulus behind having to crawl and vault over their fallen.
Draw: I draw the “Independent Fire at Will” card.
Soaked in sweat, smoke and blood the brave disciplined soldiers of the Drift look to the Moon for relief.
Impi: All ibutho are to move 1 forward! With the Chest breaching the Inner Barricade, the Loins and the Right Horn are blocked by Left Horn now. Zulu upon zulu stumble over each other in a ravenous clamour to end it all. The prize is there for the taking, but they are too many in such a small place.
Action: I play “Private Hook” which allows us to run a “Volley of Fire” close on the Chest. Without permission Hookie stands up and commands a “Volley of Fire!”
I roll 4 dice (5-1DRM Ammo = 4, 5, 3, 1) . Forcing a retreat on the Chest, which subsequently causes a single space displacement on the Left Horn. The haphazard volley is so unexpected and fierce that it shocks the Chest into a retreat, which then stumbles and staggers over the Left Horn in the Outer Barricade, who have to evacuate to the outer walls to avoid being trampled by the fleeing Chest.
Draw: “Relief Column” arrives! Huzzah! Over the horizon, a large relief column can be seen making their way towards the Drift at double quick time. The Zulu’s are forced to retreat, or be crushed by the new force incoming.
With the Relief Column card, comes the end of the game. It’s time to take stock and tally up the Victory Level from the Victory point calculations.
Our brave 24th of Foot withheld against all odds. A true marvel considering the disaster that befell the British at Isandlwana.
Hero without medal = +1 VP x 2 (Adendorff & Windridge) = +2 VP
Hero with medal = +2 VP x 2 (Bourne & Scheiss) = +4 VP
Hospital NOT burn = +2 VP x 1 = +2 VP
Storehouse NOT burn = +2 VP x 0 = +0 VP
Zulu Hit Marker Casualties = +2 VP x 6 ( 2 Loins, 4 Chest ) = +12 VP
Ibutho in Casualties = +5 VP x 0 = +0 VP
Ibutho didn’t get to Victory Location = +20 VP x 1 = +20 VP
TOTAL VP = 40 VP!!!
Looking up the 40VP to determine the measure of the Victory, it pans out to be an EPIC BRITISH VICTORY!
That’s it folks! I hope you enjoy following along, and now you have a grasp for the easy to play, but rather tense game that is Zulus on the Ramparts.
Keep a lookout for the new Jeff Lapkoff Rorke’s Drift game, coming real soon now.
[back to Part 6 (Turn 21, 22, 23 and 24)]