Friday night, the players gamed once more, and rather than doing the Desolation playtesting, they opted to continue their Atomic Highway game that I had started the week before. (See this journal entry on the game session.)
Once everyone was assembled to play, I continued to run the game from where we'd left off the last session. The player characters managed to deal with the raider/brigand roadblock at Cheyenne Bridge with a couple of old-fashioned grenades and stink bombs that Tom's Adrian Horfeld (the sentinel) happened to have, and then continued on their way, much to the brigands' annoyance. Continuing on, the player characters stopped off at a small oasis established near the ruins of a shopping mall to get directions, and after some words with several remnant road warriors there, set off towards the 'steader holding. Needless to say, the road warriors followed them, intent on taking their cargo, but the player characters got the unexpected assistance of someone who called himself "Jeff Thorne, Texas Ranger" (!!) and were able to drive off the scavenger road warriors. Thorne accompanied the characters and goods to the 'steader holding, and the characters were well-rewarded there. Like I said, easy, right? :)
I thought the game session of Atomic Highway went quite well, and that the game plot gave each of the characters something to do. Once we were finished for the night, the players said they'd had a good time. They had particularly enjoyed blasting through the roadblock at Cheyenne Bridge, and found that they grasped the rules really easily and had a good time of it overall.
While I don't plan to run any more Atomic Highway for the foreseeable future, I can see myself gaming it again with a bit more planning and advance work.