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

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!

BB Roundup 4th March

What’s caught my eye in the BB world this week?  This lot!

  • Two countries had their first NAF tournaments, if not ever then certainly for a while – Greece and Northern Ireland.  I haven’t seen any reports as such, but will keep my eyes peeled.  Great that the game continues to spread across the world.
  • As Fumbbl Dungeonbowl draws to a close, with semifinals planned for this week, the Road to the NAF Championship returns for its 4th year, and you can win a ticket to the NAF’s flagship annual event.  Entries close tomorrow evening.
  • I went to Bubba, and had a lovely time.  Hawca won, and donated his winning team of Platopodes to my son!  10 of the 32 had to cancel due to snow, but the rest of us thorough enjoyed it.
  • Not one, not two, but THREE different companies have Kickstarters going for Kislev teams.  I’ve been trying to figure out the chronology for why they all ended up at the same time, but it’s beyond me – they have been in BB2 for quite a while (two years?), so maybe that is the timeline for getting a team sorted.  In no particular order, here are some links:
  • Someone was asking about BB logos, so worth mentioning again Throweck’s great guide on Fumbbl about how to use GIMP (free Photoshop) to make nice looking ones.  You might need to log in to see it, but that’s always a good idea anyway!
  • NAF Tournament Director Purplegoo continues to blog, long may it continue!  More information = good!  I started when I was Pres, but ran out of steam somewhat.  Hope he won’t, I have faith!
  • A GW BB event was spotted in the calendar for Warhammer World in the middle of May!  Always nice to play in the shadow of the large Space Marine.  Fingers crossed that it will be prefaced by lots of shiny new releases.

That’s it for just now, I’m off to stick together some Platypodes…

Bubba 2018

The Sann Clan went in force to Bubba’s new home yesterday – the Pavilion in Keynsham.  Really nice venue, with a bar on site, lunch included and plenty of room for gaming fun. I took my new female human team, Alex continued his quest for Pro Elf excellence (almost back at 150 ranking now!), Linus played his 25th race with Bretonnian, and Callum stuck to Wood Elves.  Jip hitched a lift in the Vengabus, using Norse.  For those who didn’t know, the snow had been a major factor this week, and 10 of the 32 attendees didn’t make it – gutted for them, and very glad it was just a hop down the M4 for us.

My first was against DaPiranha’s Lizards, and I started in a jovial mood, though I must figure out how to play with joviality but also playing properly, as I made a load of rubbish mistakes that Dave took full advantage of.  When Hemlock died from a GFI, leaving a cage corner open, the match should have been mine really, but I left chain push options and made bad decisions, and Dave’s dice and skills were good enough for a 2-1 win, despite me lucking in a turn 8 to go in 1-1 at the half and receiving. Shocking, and had I not been driving, I would have been availing myself of the bar at this stage.  Alex, Linus and Jip all won!

4 games in a day however meant there was no time for moping, and my loss was rewarded with a halfling matchup, though I wasn’t pleased to see the bundle of evil that is Puggy on the other side of the table (on the pitch, not the coach – that was Nightwing).  I had a fair amount of control, but he managed a one-turner in the first half, and then in the second I scored in 2 in order to push for a big score to make myself feel better (as there were no TD bonus points).  Unfortunately, this bit me on the bottom in his Turn 15/16, with a dodge, dodge, pickup in 2 TZ, dodge, GFI dodge, GFI dodge, throw in two TZ, land, survive a two dice block, GFI score. Entirely legit.  2-2 draw.  Another win for Jip!  Becoming a force to be reckoned with…

Lunch included some awesome cake!  Then game 3 against Goblins, coached by Cornish, in our first game, despite having been on the same circuit for ages. He had Ripper and two B&C, plus Fink the Fixer – the goblin roster is evolving!  Fun game, including a TTM score, and it was pretty close until about turn 13.  Will look forward to a rematch!  3-1 win. Meanwhile, Jip’s dice abandoned him at a critical point so he ended on a 2-2 draw.  Top 3 tables all drew though, so game 4 was critical.  Linus and Alex were both on 2 wins as well, so family honour was up for grabs!

Game 4 was a Scot-off, as I played against our gracious host, though he wasn’t taking it entirely seriously with Underworld, including the Verminator!  I did my best to lose it, leaving Skitter unmarked at a critical moment, and then playing foolishly towards the end, but recorded a 2-1 win to put me at a reasonable 2-1-1, and just ahead of Linus and Alex both on 2-0-2.  Jip finished on 2-1-1 as well, but he had almost twice the opponent score that I had, so entirely reasonably was three places ahead in the table (and king of the car!).

Callum picked up his second spoon, but had a good day, so many thanks to all his opponents for their patience!  Linus and Alex were really quite shouty, so apologies for that, but at least there was no Waterbowl-style meltdown… 

Congratulations to Hawca for another tourney win, and massive thanks to him for donating his team prize to Alex in recognition of his entertaining play against him!  We’ve been happily sticking platypuses together this morning, and he’s hoping to bring them to Sawbbbowl next month, when Linus will also be completing the 26.

Jip was kind enough to cede his right as King of the Car to choose the takeaway, so I got my Grand Mac on the way home.  Funny old BB day, as I basically played much worse than my best all day, but the company was as good as ever, and that’s what it’s all about.  Or so I’ve been told.

Will bring my A game to SAWBBBBBBowl in April – Pro Elf (currently on 149.99 ranking) or Chaos Dwarf (only 5 NAF games) I think!  Can’t wait!