Eurobowl 13 (2018)

Another Eurobowl in the bag – Scotland cap number 5, 10 years after cap number 1!  A great weekend, with only the Blood Bowl performances being disappointing.  The Wales team did a brilliant job at the SWALEC stadium, home of Glamorgan cricket club, which was a fantastic venue with a free-flowing bar, superb AV equipment and a lovely atmosphere throughout with plenty of space to socialise.  I’d taken the kids along in the first ever all-U16 Europen team, and they had a superbly enjoyable weekend as well.

Game 1 was against a league mate, Raging82, the Ireland team captain, my necro against his lizards.  With a tackle wight and sharpened claws, I was fairly happy with the racial match up, but sadly I only managed a single casualty all day, and it wasn’t in this game!  The game was captured on the YouTube channel for Beer and Blood Bowl, so I might watch back once the dust has settled.  It started well with a failed skink pickup, and if my blodge ghoul had made the 4+ pickup in my turn it would have been a very different game.  Instead, it bounced to a skink…

I had other chances – a two dice block to free a wight to blitz the ball carrier failed, as did a GFI to surf late in the half, but I went in 1-0 down.  Facing a full team of 11 I would have been happy with a draw, but Nuffle messed with me when my flesh golem caught the ball.  Made the rookie error of thinking 8 turns would be enough to wander up the pitch, and at this point the lizards started leaving the pitch, but in turn 7 the golem got bogged down within range of the endzone and it all went wrong.  Kudos to Dan for starting his captaincy with a win for himself and the team, as we went down 4.5 to 3.5.  In the new scoring system, 0 points.  This will be a recurring theme.

Game 2 was against Austria, Lewdgrip’s Chaos Pact.  Managed a fair amount of pressure on his drive, but his Dark Elf squirmed free and squeaked over the line in turn 6, giving me 3 turns to score back.  Sadly, it was a deep kick, and I messed up my strategy, pushing too hard for the equaliser at the half.  This did not go well, and a failed ghoul dodge meant I went in 2-0 down.  On my drive I scored in 2, and then popped the ball loose, but he recovered it again.  And then nonsense, as I managed a long pass after some serious shenanigans to pull it back to 2-2.  Sadly, another 4.5 – 3.5 loss, and still 0 points.

Game 3 v Hungary, this time against Nelkor’s unconventional Wood Elves – 2 wardancers and 10 linemen!  I managed my first casualty of the day in this game, but as he also ran out of space in the KO box I shouldn’t moan too much.  A 2-0 win, and a first round win for Scotland.

I had a quiet evening with the kids, though I understand the Cardiff night life played host to a good number of Blood Bowlers, making the most of the clocks going back and the fairly late Sunday finish.

Game 4 was Norway, Straume’s Dark Elves, who I had faced at the NAF Championship.  I left an early half chance involving a 4+ dodge into the cage, which worked, but I should have been able to recover, only to be mashed by a 1 in 81 failure.  Shouldn’t have made the mistake, and deserved to lose 1-0 against a great player.  Sadly, another 4.5 – 3.5 loss.

Game 5 v newcomers Greece, to whom I had leant an Orc team, but luckily I wasn’t facing them as that would have been confusing.  A more conventional Wood Elf team than previously in the hands of Cana, and ended up on stream again.  Game started well, killing the strip wardancer in the first couple of turns, and I thought I’d done enough to stop the score, only for the elfs to do the elfy thing in turn 8.   Plenty of carnage on my drive, but again mostly KOs, so when the captain’s orders came through to push for the win I was sceptical, and pleased when they were reversed a minute later.  I walked it in on my turn 8, and was happy to rely on my golems to stop the one-turner.  Made another mistake though, as I had forgotten about his frenzy wardancer, and I’d set a player up two squares back from the line instead of 3.  He took full advantage, pushed him into his own half, and then used him to get the two squares that his catcher needed.  3 unprotected GFIs later and I’d lost.  Not a trick I’d seen before, but was kicking myself about it.  Worth a watch!  We won the round, but hosting rights were beyond us at this stage, being fought over between Finland and Malta.

Final game and I was on bottom table for I think the first time in my Eurobowl history, facing Quetzal of Belgium’s undead.  Managed a 1-0 win, to put the seal on his rubbish results weekend, which culminated in him rolling two lots of triple both downs.  Scotland won the round, putting us on 3-0-3 for the weekend, and midtable again.

Results wise, congratulations to England after one of their tightest Eurobowl wins, and a huge well done to the Scottish Europen team who managed third.  The Sann Clan got a round win against Beer and Blood Bowl, plus a handful of decent individual results, including contributing 10 casualties to Wobert’s most casualties trophy!

I’d decided before this tournament to hang up my Eurobowl boots as there is enough strength in depth resident in Scotland and taking part in Scottish tournaments to be able to pick two Eurobowl teams, so it’s healthier for Scottish Blood Bowl to have plenty of opportunities to qualify without taking up a wild card pick.  If ever the team end up with only 7 willing to travel, then I’ll expect a call, but that doesn’t seem like a likely situation any time soon, so I’ll be supporting from the sidelines in future, and probably heading up a Sann Clan team in the Europen, depending on the cost of heading to Poland in 2020 and Malta in 2021!

I was really pleased for the organisers, Hawca and Dapiranha, plus others, pulling off a triumphant weekend.  Very glad personally that the scoring software I wrote survived the weekend, and that I was able to contribute in a small way to the success of the tournament.  Next up is to get registered for the World Cup, in which I’ll be playing and probably not having to do anything to do with the organisation, which was an enjoyable experience in Portugal and I looking forward to experiencing it again!

 

 

Exebowl V – 2018

Good day at Exebowl V today.  A day of milestones – my 80th NAF tournament, my 26th NAF race, my 400th NAF game, and my first NAF loss to one of my children!

Exebowl is close to my heart because I’m a South-Wester at heart, having been born in Plymouth and gone to school in Somerset, so I’ll always make an effort to attend.  The fifth edition was a bit smaller than usual, after a move to Kirton Games in Crediton (half an hour from Exeter itself) and a change in organiser, but 18 people gathered in the Kirton Games loft.  It’s a nice little games shop, with tables perfectly sized for BB and a choice of traditional seats or bar seating (i.e. tables at different heights).

I took Khorne, Alex had Wood Elves and Linus Bretonnian. Skill package was 1200 TV, 4 singles and a double, max 2 of a skill, no tiering.  Zoe came along to experience the BB tournament ambience, with a view to getting her playing in 2019.  She knows the rules, but has trouble making decisions in a timely manner (sounds familiar, tbh…)

My first game was against HairyPete, @amanandhistoys on Twitter, the originator of Exebowl and a thoroughly nice bloke.  I scored in 5 turns, giving him 4 back.  He was pretty comfortable until he thought that my Bloodthirster had M5 intead of M6, and left the ball carrier exposed as a result.  The surf put my chap on the sideline (a juicy “return surf” target) but also one of my players on the ball and heading for the score.  Pete had to choose between surfing and stopping the score (see top picture), and went for the surf for entertainment value, so I went in 2-0 up.  In his half he managed to remove a few players, and scored in 6 turns, giving me 3 to chill out and protect the lead.  This wasn’t to be, alas, as he rolled a blitz, which combined with the scatter to make life difficult.  I managed to hold on though for a 2-1 win.  Alex and Linus were both in commanding positions, but managed to throw them away for draws. Kids, eh?

Game 2 was v Dru Drew, so good they named him twice. Using orcs, which I think are a great match up for Khorne, as the can opener can do its worst.  Fairly comfortable 1-0 at the half, but then my drive went pear-shaped because of a 1 in 81 block failure.  Very squeaky 2-0 after a punt down the pitch.  Alex’s wood elves did the elf thing and won 4-0, and Linus got beaten up as Pete took his revenge on the clan.

Three coaches on 2 wins going into game 3, but as I was the lowest I played against the highest on a win and a draw, which happened to be Alex (that 4-0 win!).  It was also going to be third game on the stream, which can be found at twitch.tv/kirtongames.  I started to beat him up a bit, though this was limited by three consecutive failed wild animal blitzes in the first half and two at the start of the second half.  I went in 1-0, though it was far from straightforward.  On his drive he scored in 3, but again shenanigans were required, leaving me 6 turns to get the win.  Unfortunately, I was still facing 10 elves, despite a plethora of armour breaks.  In short, I failed to analyse the wardancer threat effectively, and he made me pay, stripping the ball, recovering it, then stalling out effectively for the win.

A good day for the clan overall – Alex in 2nd with most TDs, me in 3rd, Linus on 0/2/1, and Zoe introduced to the glorious world of tournament Blood Bowl!

Blocking in the Dark

My attempts at finding a clear way to stream continue!  I now have a green screen style dice roller, which allows me to superimpose the dice on the board, which is pretty cool…

This is me rolling yet another 1 when my minotaur attempts to blitz, and slumping over the table, as part of my SAWBBL league game.  But the latest problem is that by getting enough light on the dice box to make it show up on the board, the rest of the table is plunged into darkness.  Boo!

There was a separate issue that neither player could see the dice very well, which for me detracted from the enjoyment of the game.  And I like using a dice cup!  Which comes to the nub of the issue, which is that when playing the game the enjoyment of the two players has to be paramount, and I haven’t yet managed to figure out how to stream really well without reducing this.  Apart from having a third party to do the filming, as the Waterbowl chaps have shown very well in their partnership with Element Games.

All of this of course is not to diminish the fab streaming from Raging82, the Beer and Blood Bowl guys, and others, but I’m on a quest to make tabletop BB as viewer friendly as electronic BB can be, and I’m not there yet…

Red Trophy Draws and Results

# Coach Race Score Touchdowns Casualties Opp Score
1 sann0638 Necromantic Undead 7 8 2 14 3 20
2 twelfman Lizardman 7 7 4 7 13 17
3 heartsbane Chaos Dwarf 6 7 5 10 9 16
4 hobnail Amazon 6 6 4 9 8 19
5 20phoenix Chaos 6 5 3 8 8 14
6 Fisher Chaos Pact 5 6 3 13 7 16
7 dreamscreator Chaos Dwarf 5 6 4 16 11 10
8 duffins Goblin 5 9 8 15 13 10
9 dionysian Chaos Dwarf 5 4 3 7 11 12
10 cornish Skaven 5 7 6 10 14 14
11 khorneliuspraxx Wood Elf 5 5 5 2 12 10
12 nightwing Chaos Dwarf 4 5 4 15 7 13
13 itchen Underworld 4 5 5 21 4 14
14 dapiranha Chaos 4 3 3 9 15 12
15 andswin Slann 4 9 11 15 10 15
16 manicmechanic Skaven 3 8 8 10 13 12
17 skab Human 3 6 6 5 16 11
18 frogboy Orc 3 4 5 12 5 9
19 kismet Nurgle Rotters 3 2 5 8 8 13
20 angryhobbit Chaos 2 4 6 10 6 10
21 svine High Elf 2 6 8 8 7 9
22 domfluff Underworld 2 3 5 12 13 8
23 flaponion Ogre 2 3 5 10 17 6
24 nonumber Skaven 2 4 6 8 16 8
25 sillysimon Undead 2 3 7 10 12 6
26 thevoiceofjericho Vampire 2 6 10 8 14 8

Round 4

1 – sann0638 (Necromantic Undead) v twelfman (Lizardman)
2 – heartsbane (Chaos Dwarf) v Fisher (Chaos Pact)
3 – itchen (Underworld) v 20phoenix (Chaos)
4 – cornish (Skaven) v dionysian (Chaos Dwarf)
5 – hobnail (Amazon) v manicmechanic (Skaven)
6 – skab (Human) v dreamscreator (Chaos Dwarf)
7 – frogboy (Orc) v duffins (Goblin)
8 – kismet (Nurgle Rotters) v nightwing (Chaos Dwarf)
9 – khorneliuspraxx (Wood Elf) v angryhobbit (Chaos)
10 – domfluff (Underworld) v dapiranha (Chaos)
11 – andswin (Slann) v thevoiceofjericho (Vampire)
12 – svine (High Elf) v flaponion (Ogre)
13 – nonumber (Skaven) v sillysimon (Undead)

Round 3

Table 1 – hobnail (Amazon) 0 (1) v 3 (5) sann0638 (Necromantic Undead)
Table 2 – twelfman (Lizardman) 2 (6) v 1 (3) manicmechanic (Skaven)
Table 3 – itchen (Underworld) 2 (9) v 2 (1) cornish (Skaven)
Table 4 – dreamscreator (Chaos Dwarf) 1 (2) v 2 (2) heartsbane (Chaos Dwarf)
Table 5 – skab (Human) 1 (0) v 1 (4) frogboy (Orc)
Table 6 – andswin (Slann) 0 (1) v 3 (3) Fisher (Chaos Pact)
Table 7 – 20phoenix (Chaos) 1 (4) v 0 (1) dapiranha (Chaos)
Table 8 – angryhobbit (Chaos) 0 (3) v 1 (1) dionysian (Chaos Dwarf)
Table 9 – kismet (Nurgle Rotters) 1 (3) v 1 (0) khorneliuspraxx (Wood Elf)
Table 10 – nightwing (Chaos Dwarf) 1 (4) v 1 (3) domfluff (Underworld)
Table 11 – duffins (Goblin) 2 (4) v 1 (2) nonumber (Skaven)
Table 12 – thevoiceofjericho (Vampire) 2 (1) v 2 (3) svine (High Elf)
Table 13 – flaponion (Ogre) 1 (5) v 1 (4) sillysimon (Undead)

Round 2

Table 1 – sann0638 (Necromantic Undead) 2 (3) v 1 (1) Fisher (Chaos Pact)
Table 2 – heartsbane (Chaos Dwarf) 2 (1) v 2 (3) cornish (Skaven)
Table 3 – hobnail (Amazon) 2 (4) v 0 (1) khorneliuspraxx (Wood Elf)
Table 4 – andswin (Slann) 1 (5) v 2 (1) twelfman (Lizardman)
Table 5 – domfluff (Underworld) 0 (1) v 1 (5) itchen (Underworld)
Table 6 – frogboy (Orc) 1 (4) v 1 (1) angryhobbit (Chaos)
Table 7 – thevoiceofjericho (Vampire) 1 (4) v 4 (5) manicmechanic (Skaven)
Table 8 – dreamscreator (Chaos Dwarf) 1 (6) v 0 (2) nonumber (Skaven)
Table 9 – dapiranha (Chaos) 1 (4) v 1 (3) dionysian (Chaos Dwarf)
Table 10 – nightwing (Chaos Dwarf) 1 (5) v 1 (3) duffins (Goblin)
Table 11 – svine (High Elf) 1 (0) v 2 (2) 20phoenix (Chaos)
Table 12 – sillysimon (Undead) 0 (2) v 3 (0) skab (Human)
Table 13 – flaponion (Ogre) 0 (1) v 1 (3) kismet (Nurgle Rotters)

Round 1

Table 1 – heartsbane (Chaos Dwarf) 2 (5) v 1 (1) skab (Human)
Table 2 – cornish (Skaven) 2 (5) v 1 (2) sillysimon (Undead)
Table 3 – hobnail (Amazon) 1 (3) v 0 (1) 20phoenix (Chaos)
Table 4 – svine (High Elf) 1 (1) v 2 (1) khorneliuspraxx (Wood Elf)
Table 5 – domfluff (Underworld) 2 (4) v 2 (2) nonumber (Skaven)
Table 6 – duffins (Goblin) 4 (6) v 5 (6) andswin (Slann)
Table 7 – dapiranha (Chaos) 1 (2) v 1 (4) frogboy (Orc)
Table 8 – flaponion (Ogre) 0 (1) v 1 (6) Fisher (Chaos Pact)
Table 9 – dreamscreator (Chaos Dwarf) 1 (3) v 1 (3) thevoiceofjericho (Vampire)
Table 10 – itchen (Underworld) 1 (3) v 1 (1) dionysian (Chaos Dwarf)
Table 11 – manicmechanic (Skaven) 2 (1) v 2 (2) angryhobbit (Chaos)
Table 12 – twelfman (Lizardman) 2 (0) v 1 (2) nightwing (Chaos Dwarf)
Table 13 – sann0638 (Necromantic Undead) 2 (3) v 0 (1) kismet (Nurgle Rotters)

Chaos Dwarf are tier 2, so we have a few of those, but a nice spread otherwise.

Blood Bowl Pro Moves

After various discussions with Jip, here is a light-hearted selection of “pro moves” that show an affinity with the rulebook you can use to your advantage!

  1. Using a ball and chain to block your own player with dodge, knowing that with 3 dice you’re unlikely to hurt him or yourself
  2. Using an apo to turn a KO to Stun
  3. In a league game, fouling with your best player once you have the win in the bag to keep him safe for the next game
  4. Dumping off to the player who is blitzing you so that he catches it and can’t score
  5. Running into the corner when about to be blitzed so the ball scatters somewhere crazy

SAWBBowl Roundup 2018

Wow, what a day.  Glowworm’s massive one-day tournament is always a highlight, but this year topped the lot, mostly because the Sann Clan came away with Linus’s first NAF tournament win as well as the Schwing award for most illegal casualties.  Linus (aka Enderman) also completed the 24 races today, along with Khorne and Bretonnian, becoming (I believe) the youngest BB player to do so, and possibly the youngest to win a NAF tournament, though this could well be challenged.

I made him a certificate to celebrate the 26, and you can download the word version here, though without Nate’s signature on it!So Linus knew he was completing the 26 in advance, obviously, but then he won his first game 2-0 against DaPiranha, a hugely experienced Welsh BB coach and one of the organisers of this year’s Eurobowl/Europen in Cardiff.  Happy days!  Next was Ceetee, a previously winner of the Best of the Rest trophy at the NAF Championships, and a happy sequence of skulls allowed him to squeak a 2-1 win.  At this stage we were hoping for him to draw Jip, who had already played Alex and me, having travelled in the car with us.  Instead he drew Kismet, a SAWBBL coach (and brilliant painter!) who was using Dark Elves.  Not many Dark Elves by the end of the game as it turned out, as Linus’s Casualty dice were on fire!

Glow managed the awards ceremony excellently, awarding Linus the best U16 trophy first, which led him to think he had come 5th, because with only 3 games there were a few coaches on 3 wins.  But with the joint best opponent score, and the best combined TD and Casualty score, Linus triumphed, winning his first NAF shield, in a field of 52 coaches!  He also won an Amazon team, which I had wanted for a while but hadn’t been able to justify it to go with the other two Amazon teams I already have…  Thanks to all the winners for letting him have the one of the four teams available that we didn’t already have, and Hawca for donating the Apes to Alex as well!

As for the rest of us, Alex took Goblins, lost all 3, but caused 9 casualties using illegal means (fouling, chainsaws etc); I lost to Jip in game 2, but won against Besters and Heartsbane.  My first outing with Bretonnians, and will probably take them to NAFC.  Callum took dwarves and lost all 3, but didn’t get the spoon, hurrah!  Everyone had a great day, in glorious sunshine, with a massive playing field out the back for between-game entertainment, and excellent noodle lunch as well, thanks John!

So yeah, great day, which raised a load of money for charity too (including from Nazgob’s painted team raffle!).  Top notch Blood Bowl action.

SAW 2018 Results

BB roundup 28th March

Weekly, he says!  Ah well, there wasn’t much outcry when they didn’t appear, so no biggy.

What’s been going on in the last few weeks?  These bits and bobs, that’s what!

  • Among a load of excellent tournaments, Dungeonbowl was held in Germany, the European NAF Major.  Won by Diomlord’s Orcs.  Lots of good reporting and links on the NAF’s Twitter account, which now has a new master (@Wormito)!
  • The NAF World Cup commemorative team was also unveiled there, along with the rules, all on the website, so various tournaments that will be using those rules in 2019 are all starting to plot!
  • GW revealed details of their next release, which will be a plastic Chaos team containing 4 warriors and 8 beasts, called the Doom Lords.  Great to see a complete decent starter team in a box, which can be completed with the previously released Forgeworld minotaur,
  • GW also showcased Spike magazine, though without any detail of content!  There was a big demon on the front bearing a strong resemblance to Scyla from Warhammer Fantasy.
  • The Road to the NAF Championships started on Fumbbl, which means that the big one is only a few weeks away!  160 currently signed for BB goodness in Nottingham in May, but plenty of space for more!
  • There has been a bit of an upsurge in 7s tournaments recently, both taking place and also in the calendar.  These are popular either because of the number of games in the day, or they can take place in the evening. It’s also a great way to learn the mechanics of the game.  Since the rankings were added to the database as a separate Variant too, there will be some serious competition!
  • Speaking of rankings, the NAF launched a new way of measuring BB ability, the Glicko rankings.  It’s still in alpha, and the NAF’s happy to get feedback about what you think. Have a read!

I’ve probably missed some stuff, but that’s the big news…

Playing at Eurobowl/Europen

Not a huge amount of news in the BB world this week that I have noticed (though fingers crossed for some GW news in the next fortnight!), but thought it would be worth writing some stuff about Eurobowl and Europen participation, particularly for British BB coaches who haven’t taken part before.

Eurobowl 2018 is taking place in Cardiff on October 27th and 28th and costs £75 for the weekend.

Lycos posted on the Team England Reddit  that he is now asking for coaches to put their names forward for the team, but there wasn’t a lot of context for what that means.  England are by a wide margin the most successful Eurobowl team, with 6 wins to their name.  The core of the team has been the same for those wins, and it is likely that those players are going to make themselves available again.  Of the team of 8, Lycos, Geggster, Joemanji, Purplegoo and Jimjimany form the core, with Pipey, Podfrey and a few others making up the 8 over the years.  This list includes some of the best players in the world, basically, so often the question is “why bother putting my name forward”.  Well, if you are interested in competitive BB, you definitely should and then try to make your results as good as possible in NAF tournaments, because while you might not make the list this year, you will be knocking on the door for future tournaments, and equally if your results are good enough then there is no reason you can’t make up one of the remaining slots.  So far, PeteW has put his name in, and as a double NAF Championship/Blood Bowl winner and Fumbbl stalwart, it will be very interesting to see if he makes the team.

As regards other UK teams, the Scottish and Welsh teams have already been chosen for this year.  The Scots choose 3 based on the Scottish NAF tournament circuit results, 1 elected Captain, his choice as Vice Captain, and then 3 wild card choices.  Wales was an interesting one this year as a few regulars are on the organising committee so some spaces became available.  They’ve filled the spaces with decent coaches, luckily!

There is also talk of an Irish team for the first time, so follow the link if you were born there, live there, or have Irish parents or grandparents (basically). The qualifying criteria are pretty loose, so just get in touch if you think you could have a shout.  Also, only 5 of the 8 need to be nationals, and the rest can be made up of Freebooters.  It would be great to see an Irish team there, and for the team to develop in future years!

So, what if you don’t make the national team of whatever flavour?  Well, if you are feeling particularly patriotic, all of the British nations are running a squad system, with the Eurobowl and Europen teams being seen as part of a national squad (I believe), and the Europen being used very much as a proving ground for future Eurobowl participation.  Alternatively, you can use it a chance to represent your local league, and bring glory to your area!  Team Blood Bowl is often recognised as the most exciting kind of tabletop Blood Bowl, and this is going to be the biggest ever UK team event (with a vigorous nod to the annual UKTC), so if you are in the UK and like tabletop BB, have a think about attending.  If you haven’t got team mates, there is even a thread on TFF to get a team together.

I think that’s enough Euro-wittering for the moment – you may have picked up that I’m pretty enthusiastic about the whole concept!

Large Block Dice

I’ve been thinking about getting large block dice made for a while, mostly for streaming purposes so that they are easier to see on the video, but also for my own entertainment, as I got some large casino dice which are quite fun to use.  Schawn from the US has commissioned these, which would be 22mm, and are available for $18 for a set of 3.  They would be sent to me and so would be postage free if you are going to be seeing me at a tournament, including Cakebowl, Thrud and the Eurobowl in Cardiff (also NAFC, but unlikely to be ready by then).

Here are the pics, including a normal size dice for reference.

To order, please email Schawn the following to bbschawn@gmail.com:

Name
Address (or going to Mike)
How many sets you want.

Taking orders and payments up front.

I think they’re pretty awesome, hope you’re interested!