A New Survivor Has Been Rescued: Charles, the Hoarder
About a week ago I presented my first custom survivor from his initial concept to his current design (including a zombified version). While the initial concepts and first aversion was mostly solo work, my good friend, Charles contributed heavily to the second and third versions. And so, this time, I present Charles’s Zombicide Survivor and Zombivor.
Charles, the Hoarder is inspired by my good friend, Charles. Charles is a good musician and a gentle giant. I’m not honestly sure he would survive the zombie apocalypse at all, but there’s a outside chance due to the ridiculous amount of pop culture he’s consumed.1 Another key to his survival is his messenger bag and the supplies he just happens to have on his person when the outbreak occurs. Unfortunately, most of Charles’s traits don’t led themselves to Zombicide skills.
Version 1 & 2
|Blue / +1 free Search action||Red 1 / Tough|
|Yellow / +1 action||Red 2 / Lucky|
|Orange 1 / Hold your nose||Red 3 / Hoard|
|Orange 2 / Lock it down|
Charles’s skills are focused around his messenger bag and messy room. He gets a free Search action at blue level to let him find things quickly. At orange, Hold your nose let’s him search in zones outside buildings. To me this action is based around his ability to find something useful in his messenger bag and not him digging around an undead corpse. Lock it down allows Charles hole up in a building and get fully equipped before venturing back out into the carnage. Tough allows him to shrug off a single zombie attack every round. Lucky let’s him re-roll a bad attack and increase his chances of survival. Charles ended up a mish-mash of skills with out a well-defined role and had to wait until the expanded lineup in Version 3 to see any changes.
|Blue / Starts with a Flashlight||Red 1 / Hoard|
|Yellow / +1 action||Red 2 / Lock it down|
|Orange 1 / Hold your nose||Red 3 / Slippery|
|Orange 2 / Tough|
Charles saw a bit of skill re-shuffling as his skill were moved around. He also lost Lucky in exchange for Slippery. Neither skill is really appropriate for him, but we felt that Slippery would bring the character into line power-wise with the other characters. I also replaced his +1 free Search action at blue level with Starts with a Flashlight. I thought this would be a big boon to the character and differentiate him from the base game’s Ned. It did accomplish the latter goal but it ultimately failed at the first goal. With Version 3 of James on the team, the smartest move was to always trade the flashlight away from Charles and to James to maximize the use of Destiny. And thus poor Charles never really got a chance to play himself.
|Blue / Destiny||Red 1 / Webbing|
|Yellow / +1 Action||Red 2 / Is That All You’ve Got?|
|Orange 1 / Hoard||Red 3 / +1 free Search Action|
|Orange 2 / +1 free Combat Action|
The fourth version of Charles saw a small but hugely important update. With James moving into a more tactical role, Charles could finally carve out his own niche as an equipment locker. And so, he turned in his flashlight for the Destiny skill. Destiny allows the player to discard the first equipment card drawn and then draw a new card. This can’t be used for any special searches such as vehicles, the additional draw from a flashlight, etcetera. So while it’s more limited in scope than we initially played, it’s still an incredibly useful skill. I also pulled out his Tough and Slippery skills to give him some combat focused skills. With the +1 free Combat action and Webbing, Charles can use any weapons he grabs and keep himself apace with the rest of the team.
|Blue / Destiny||Red 1 / Webbing|
|Yellow / +1 free Search Action||Red 2 / Is That All You’ve Got?|
|Orange 1 / Hoard||Red 3 / Zombie Link|
|Orange 2 / Hold Your Nose|
So Charles loses his secondary general combat role and morphs into a zombie. He gains Hold your nose as an attempt to make sure he can utilize his +1 free Search action at yellow level regardless of his location. Zombie Link allows him to move on drawn extra activations which can prove crucial to repositioning himself so that he can make the most of Is that all you’ve got? to protect teammates.
Over the course of his design, Charles has constantly been focused on finding equipment and maximizing it’s potential. I think there may be room to re-design the Zombivor version but that will probably happen after the expansions arrive. As always, you can find Charles and other custom survivors in my Zombicide notebook.
- I’ll leave it to the reader whether or not this makes his brain less appetizing to zombies or more useful to him. ↩