First and Only - The Outpost - Jul 11|
First & Only, The Outpost Jul 17th 2011
On the 17th of July the Black Scorpions visited 'The Outpost' formerly known as (and still aka) 'Drakelow Tunnels' in Kidderminster. This is the third site run by First & Only the team have been to.
The site was easy to find thanks to some posters, and the unmistakeable signs of a skirmish, a small carpark full of guys in various camouflage carrying riflebags.
The entrance to the site is rather grand, a doorway set in a huge, unatural gouge into the steep slopes of the forest. Being July it was humid, however as soon as you step through the door you are met by very cool air. This is one of the great advantages of underground sites, no matter what time of the year, the temperature is almost constant. Other advantages are, it never rains and it's never windy (although this can be a disadvantage, but I'll talk about that later).
The marshalling was the same high quality stuff we have seen before at both 'The Mall' and 'The Asylum'. At the start of the day we were told who the trained first aiders were, not something you see at many sites.
The turnout was fairly good with about 20 players on each side. Throughout the day we played 3 games 2 of which were reversed giving 5 games in total. The games were standard attack defend affairs, the second included several objectives that needed to be held at the end of the game. One game included VIPs that need to be protected/caught for bonus points. The game briefs were given clearly and concisely and mid game all the marshalls still knew what was going on with both teams.
Regen was a mixture of traditional regen as well as all players having the abilty to heal team mates by keeping hold of them for a count of 10 which kept play flowing.
Understandably, due to the nature of an underground site, smoke grenades are not used at 'The Outpost'. BFGs are allowed but as we found out, they still produce enough smoke when used en masse to give off a lot of smoke. Enough smoke infact that during one game both teams came to a stand off when visibility was reduced to about 3 meters. This unfortunately made one game rather stale.
The site itself is pitch black in places, a torch is absolutely necessary, some areas are lit but most is not. The atmosphere is great, being so dark and echoey. Thereis a lot of debris, some of which seems a little dangerous, it would probably be prudent to clear some of the more treacherous bits out. My only real critism of the site other than this is the very small amount of cover. There is almost no cover in the tunnels except for some alcoves and the corners of intersecting tunnels. In some places the gaps between these is very large making it very difficult to make progress and defence too easy. Seeing some more cover would make the site much more enjoyable to play in my opinion.
The £30 included luch which was a 'fish and chip shop' style sausage and chips and was very nice. Although this is included I feel the £30 walk on fee is too high especially whn compared to 'The Asylum' and 'The Mall', I think a price of £25 would bring it more into line with these sites.
All in all, I feel 'The Outpost' is a good site, but I also think it could be better if given the attention it deserves, and the walk on fee would justify. Despite these critisms we still had a great day and would recommend you vist 'The Outpost' especially if you are yet to experience an underground skirmish.