First Game of Pulp Alley

I picked up a copy of the recently published pulp skirmish rules Pulp Alley sometime last month, and we finally got a game of it in today.

Pulp Alley is published by the father & daughter team of Dave & Mila Phipps; the $10 45-page PDF has all the basic rules for pulp mayhem, designed around teams (“Leagues” in PA) of about 5-8 Heroes, Sidekicks, Allies and Followers. I’ll likely do a full review of PA soon, but the basic rules are well-written and well-edited, with nice pulpy graphic touches throughout.

For this game I copied the sample League provided in the book, hacked together a second League quickly, then assembled two more Leagues by getting players to play mix-and-match between the two existing Leagues. This left a lot of rules and features unexplored, but as a quick-and-dirty method of assembling four not-quite-identical teams it worked OK. We got out my underused tropical buildings and a few bits of jungle terrain and got to it.

Early in the game. Air Pirates in the foreground, Sailors barely visible bottom-right, Russians in a clump top-right. Cultists are off-camera top-left. Click to view on Flickr.
Fairly late in the game. My Air Pirates are mostly down, the Cultists have forted up in the lefthand building, and the Russians and Sailors are brawling in the street to the right. Click to view on Flickr.

I’ll be writing up a proper review of Pulp Alley sometime soon, probably in a few weeks after we have another couple of games. The initiative system is different and interesting, with initiative changing hands based on winning fights or capturing objectives. The Fortune Card deck is a great idea and added quite a lot to the game, especially a few turns into the scenario when we were all a bit more comfortable with the rules. The combat system is elegant, although I can tell I need to stop at my FLGS to get a few more d8s before our next game. Before next weeks game I want to properly build several Leagues to get a better idea of the character and League creation rules; there’s also several questions I’ll need to ask over on the Pulp Alley forums, mostly to do with wounding and recovery from wounding, which we got slightly confused by!

It was great to get back to pulp gaming again, and I’m looking forward to getting more familiar with the Pulp Alley rules.

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