Sunday, 5 March 2017

Blood Bowl - False Start. Everyone but the Centre.*

Blood Bowl has made a very welcome return to our wargaming tables recently. I didn't play much on its first time round, but I did keep my Skaven team from back in the day, so I was ready and waiting to 'play ball'.

* Nothing to do with the content of the post, but just my favourite** referee's call in American Football.

Above: My Skaven Team, Tails of the River Bank.

A true test of how much I will enjoy a game is the tournament arena. Recently, I made the short trip to Ibuywargames in Woking with Mike B to see what's what. Answer one was, the vast array of teams. Humans, Dwarves, Orks and Skaven were all present, but in addition, were also some dusty models representing Chaos Dwarves, Dark Eldar and the Undead (perhaps the undead weren't dusty, but were painted to look dusty? I hadn't thought about that at the time).

My team was as follows:
- 2 Throwers
- 2 Blitzers
- 3 Gutter Runners
- 5 Linerats
- 1 Fan factor
- 3 Three re-rolls

** What? You don't have a favourite referees call! How odd.

Game One - James - Shambling Undead.

Who knew that Undead teams came in three flavours? Not me. This was a hard lesson in being stomped. The score would have been more of a rout, if the undead moved any quicker than continental drift (although a Ghoul moving 7 was a surprise). Lots of Skaven KIA as the following pictures will testify. 

Above: James. Thoughtful beard stroking.

Above: Call that a formation? This is a formation.

Above: :-(

Above: We can but try.

Above: A risky, and fruitless attempt to run down the field by my Skaven Lineman met with another painful face plant (TO recording the event for posterity). 

Result: 2-0 loss

Game Two - Mitchell (Sorry if I have got your name wrong) - Human

This was a fun game, and where I coined the term 'the furry tunnel'. The tactic involves the Skaven protecting their ball carrier on a wing by forming a wall of players between the ball and the opponent's team. This give you two options. To continue your subsequent turns to move down the same flank to score, or, run the ball carrier back the way he came, hand the ball off to a thrower and lob it to a Gutter Runner on the opposite wing before your opponent can react. The rest of the Furry Tunnel scatter and play interference. 

In this game I scored using both tactics, 'Down the Furry Tunnel', and 'Ratus Interruptus' when the ball carrier leaves the tunnel early.

Above: The Furry Tunnel forming on the right.

Above: The Furry Tunnel forming on the left.

Above: Quick as you like (following the picture above). Ratus Interruptus. The ball is now on the far right in the hands of a Gutter Runner, whilst the rest of the team play interference.

I really enjoyed this encounter. Thank you to my opponent.

Result: 2-1 win

Game Three - Tom - Humans

As a regular tournament wargamer, once you begin to play an opponent, you get to quickly pick up clues as to the type of gamer they are. Very quickly, it became apparent, Tom knew his stuff. This was going to be a tough final game, and things were going to get tougher.

Tom played a random event card right away; Bad Habits, which takes away D3 of your team re-rolls. He then rolled a 5, and in a brief moment I had lost all of my re-rolls for the entire half. To make matters worse the kick-off table gave Tom an extra re-roll, making his total 4. Let me tell you, having no re-rolls makes life very difficult. Unless you can depend on a player's special skills, you need only one poor dice result and your turn is in tatters. I was lucky to escape with being only 2-0 down at the end of the first half.

I did have my re-rolls back for the second half and I managed to draw the half 1-1, but the damage was already done. Well done to Tom on a very professional game.

Result 3-1 loss.

I really enjoyed the event. Blood Bowl is a much less stressful experience for me than Guild Ball (less to remember). My favourite moment of the day was learning that Amit had named his Skaven team, The Screaming Bell Ends (I appreciate that this reference may not travel well outside of the UK). My second favourite moment was Mike correctly winning the best painted trophy. Well done Papa Burch.

Above: Awards being.......awarded.

[An apology - I am afraid that in a previous blog I had a Trigger (Only Fools and Horses) moment. I referred to one of the Infinity players as Lee, instead of Jim. Many apologises Jim].

Enjoy your scrimmaging.



  1. Another great post Alex.
    I look forward to joining you on the fields of Blood Bowl in April once I've got the game.


    1. Thank you Neil for your comment. Looking forward to seeing you take to the field.

  2. Seriously Alex, you called your play travelling down the furry tunnel.
    You got a potty mind!!!!
    I think you should have some pictures of the magnificent team that won best painted ;)

    1. Now that you mention it, when I coined the phrase during the game, there was a little laughter from my opponent and those on neighbouring tables. Honestly, it didn't occur to me what other meaning it might have.......;-).