A fellow gamer expressed interest in participating in an African themed game after re-reading Heart of Darkness. I used to put on some safari style games , but hadn't for some time, so I dusted off the miniatures and starting writing a simple scenario. The idea was a lucrative ivory trading station falling out of contact, and several competing factions sending expeditions in an attempt to claim the station and its trade routes for themselves. With no boat or appropriate river terrain, all would be hoofing it.
I decided to use our Where Heroes Dare! pulp gaming system. Since I had all of the miniatures to be used, and wanted to keep the skills and equipment "semi-realistic", I worked up all 4 teams before hand, letting each player choose the team they would run. I would take the left over.
The WHD! Dare Encounters tables included in the rule book are great, but its always fun to create your own tables that are specific to the feel or theme of the game you are running. So I whipped up some tables full of African style encounters and misfortunes.
The teams were the English Party, led by Hatterson and his companion Brigitte O'Malley, with Askaris and the Welsh Ladies Choir for followers.... the Slavers, led by Blucher and his companion The Baroness, with Arab Slavers and Ruga Ruga as followers.... the British Empire, led by Johnston and his companion Penelope, with Askaris and soldiers as followers... and finally Teddy "Ladykiller" Roosevelt and his companion Olivia, with some American Cowboys as followers (I would get "stuck" with Teddy's team).
"Lions and tigers and cowboys, oh my!" Teddy was off to a good start, running into an ambushing Lion that managed to maul Bill before being put down. In fact, only two of the many animals encountered --a gorilla, and a zebra--didn't try to kill someone. Nature abhors a vacuum, and also explorers, evidently.
Penelope covered the flank (killing a white rhino, and eventually Olivia) while Johnston entered the Ivory Trading Station. Blucher rushed up, only to provoke an angry elephant that charged into his group, crushing his Slavers to pulp before he was able to slay the pachyderm.
The 2nd place would have gone to the elephants as they killed more explorer models than any of the human parties... in fact, the Slavers lost only one model (Blucher) to rivals, the rest were killed by rogue elephants! The players surmised that not only were the elephants a concerned party to the reactivation of the abandoned ivory trading station.... they were obviously willing to voice their complaint!
It was a fun game, and though I did tailor the details a bit, it proved again how versatile WHD! is. More importantly, it satisfied a friend's interest in the gaming subject... I was happy to oblige, this is after all a fellowship, and hope to use my Africa miniatures set more often in the future.