karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 6:18am
Some tips for beginners
I Basic Risk Management
1. Avoid dodging without the Dodge skill.

Agility 3 dodge into a square with no enemy tackle zones is 3+. In other words, 33% failure = turnover rate. This is 2x riskier than taking one extra Go For It square 2+ (16,67% failure rate).

2. Avoid unnecessary go for it squares. If you don't need that extra square, don't do it. 16,67% turnover rate.

3. Avoid 1 die blocks without the Block skill. 33% turnover rate. Leave these for the last action during your turn.

4. Avoid passing when it's not absolutely necessary. Use handoffs instead. Passing has a very high turnover rate, always. The two scenarios for making passing plays are a) Elves (or otherwise Agility 4 with Pass or Catch Skill reroll), b) Desperation (running out of turns to score).

5. Basic turn structure (rough guideline, you will often slightly deviate from this):
Start your turn with safe actions = lifting up prone players, moving assists, moving the ball carrier and cage if they have no tackle zones on them, and if the ball is on the ground move at least 1 guy to stand next to the ball to protect itif there is a turnover later on, move assists for your Blitz action in place
Continue with 2 die blocks with Block skill
Continue with 2 die blocks without the Block skill
Continue with Blitz
Continue with easy ball actions (e.g. Pick up with Agility 3 Sure Hands)
Continue with 1 die blocks with Block
Continue with risky actions

II General Strategy

6. Learn how the block assists work. This is first of THE two key aspects of the game.
a) Learn how to effectively mow down the enemy players on the front line when you start to attack.
b) Try to get as many 2+ die blocks as possible every turn.

7. Learn how to control empty squares. This is THE second key aspect of this game.
a) the enemy should never be able to blitz your ball carrier without at least 1 dodge or gfi. Preferably 2+ easy dodges or 1 really hard dodge needed.
b) if the enemy team is agile, they should not

8. Don't put more than 3 players on Line of Scrimmage (front line) when defending. They will be mowed down by the opponent, so the less you put there the better for your team.

III Team composition

9. Good races for beginners:
Anything with high AV value and some useful skills to begin with
- Orcs
- Undead
- Dwarf
- Chaos Dwarf (Chaos Edition)

10. Difficult races for beginners:
teams with players with low STR and/or low AV
- Halflings, Goblins, Wood Elves
teams which start with very little useful skills
- Nurgle, Vampire

11. Buy 3 team rerolls to begin with when creating a new team. I have even started Chaos with 4 rerolls. In an emergency, settle for 2. But 2 is really not enough, and you shouldn't.

12. Buy apothecary after the first game (or whenever you can first afford it), if your team can have one. You don't need it for the first game yet.

13. Avoid assistant coaches and babes early. If you have extra cash (10-30k) when creating the team, use it for fan factor.

14. Skills to prioritize when leveling up early in the game:
- Sure Hands (one of these in a team is enough, but it's often the first skill you need to pick for a team)
- Block, helps in offensive AND defensive blocks
- Dodge, helps in defending blocks (if enemy does not have Tackle) and in dodging (still, you should avoid avoid dodging if you can)
- Guard, helps in assists, very good skill for new players to take

...and a bit later in the game:
- Tackle (to counter opposing Dodge)

IV Additional tips for "running teams" (not agile enough for passing plays - Dwarves, Undead, Chaos, Orcs, etc.):
15. Don't score as soon as possible! E.g. if you could score on turn 6/7 of the half and thus would give the agile enemy team 2/3 turns to work with, they can and often will score back to tie the half! Instead, have the ball carrier stand still protected next to the enemy end zone when ending your turns until you have to score or when it's the last turn fo the half. And hit them hard every turn, so that they won't have enough players remaining to score back with.

16. When defending, force enemy to score fast. In fact, you can intentionally let them score fast. If they score on turn 2 of the half, you have 6 turns remaining for your own offense to tie up the half. Also, make sure to tie up slowly and make sure you hit the enemy as hard and as much as possible while you're at it. If the enemy scores on say turn 5 of the half, then it's much harder for you to tie up during the only 3-4 turns remaining.

16. Pick up the ball and crawl. Focus on never losing the ball possession on your attack. Optimal play usually means you win 2-0. One touchdown on every 8th turn of each half. Or if you can not stop the enemy on their attack, 2-1 win is very nice as well.
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karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 6:21am 
7b) if the enemy team is agile, they should not be allowed to enter your halöf of the field freely from the sides when tehy are attacking. Block the empty space so that they will have to Blitz and/or dodge their way through.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 6:28am 
Also remember that you can use Blitz action by clicking it from the right hand side icon to Block first, move second during that blitz action.

Example situation where this is useful: your Black Orc Blitzer or Chaos Warrior or Flesh Golem (STR 4, Agility 2 or 3) is carrying the ball, and is very close to enemy end zone (scoring range). There is one enemy player with STR 3 standing next to the carrier when your turn begins. Instead of AG3 3+ dodge (1:3 = 33% turnover rate) or AG2 4+ dodge (1:2 = 50% failure rate), you should Blitz that STR 3 guy with 2 dice (1:9 failure rate without Block, 1:36 failure rate with Block), get a pushback result and then move to score.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 6:39am 
STR 4 players are really good ball carriers. Especially when the enemy has no players (or very few) with STR more than 3. Especially when they don't have Dauntless either. Bull Centaurs from the Chaos Dwarf team and Chaos Warriors from the Chaos team are arguably the best ball carriers in the game. It's a nightmare to get the ball away from a STR 4 carrier with Block. Also, pinning down all enemy team STR 4+ players is usually very easy because they are bad at dodging (exceptions: Vampires are excellent dodgers, Ogres and Lizardmen have so many high STR players it's hard to pin them) -> they don't have enough good players to Blitz you.

Also, when choosing inducements, taking extra regular players with a skill of your choice is often a really good and cost-efficient option vs. the early opponents. E.g. Sure Hands Lineman, or Tackle lineman vs Amazons, or some positional player you have not had the cash for to buy permanently to your team. I just kicked Team Value 130 Amazon team's ♥♥♥ 2-0 with my Team Value 100 Chaos team on normal difficulty (first match in this computer version of my favorite board game I have ever played) because I took 2 Beastmen with Tackle and made them into a pulp.

*Addition: 10. Difficult races for beginners
teams with players with low STR and/or low AV
- Halflings, Goblins, Wood Elves
teams which start with very little useful skills
- Nurgle, Vampire + Ogres + Lizardmen
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:06am 
XP gain:
Touchdown 3 XP
Casualty by block 2 XP (= causing Badly Hurt, Seriously Injured or Death in a block or blitz action, also triggers on enemy's failed block/blitz where they hurt themselves, triggers even if apothecary or regeneration etc. is successful)
Interception 2 XP
Pass 1 XP (only triggers if accurate pass and successfully catched)
MVP 5 XP (random guy from your team)

Level ups at:
6 XP
16 XP
31 XP
51 XP
76 XP
126 XP
176 XP

In other words, here are some ways for how to get the first level up:
2 touchdowns = level
3 casualties = level
1 MVP + 1 Pass = level <- check which of your guys has got 1 MVP from the team roster before the match and try to pass with them if you have extra time in the match!
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:43am 
What are handoffs and how to use them:

Handoff = giving the ball to the player standing in the next square.

This is not a pass. In other words, no passing agility roll is made, passing modifiers don't apply, and no XP is gained by the player giving the ball away.

This is a catch. Catch skill roll is made based on agility, Catch skill modifiers and the skill Catch gives a free re-roll.

How to use handoffs and with whom:
Lizardmen are the ultimate handoff team. Skinks have Stunty trait, which gives them penalties for passing, but which doesn't affect handing off.
60k - 8 2 3 7 Skink - Stunty, Dodge
Also, the Skinks get Agility type skills on normal skill rolls. Catch is an agility skill.

A typical way to build fast offense with a Lizardman team is

Turn 1) have many Skinks enter the opposing half 4 squares deep with 2+ squares between each of them sideways. In other words, they are all in touchdown range (but only barely, this is all in order to make it easier for the carrier to reach them by running for the handoff) but 1 opponent can not exert a tackle zone to two 2 (or more) skinks simultaneously. One Skink gets the ball.

Turn 2) clear a way to one of the Skinks in opposing half. If there is an enemy holding him, blitz it away. Then, the ball runner skink will come to handoff the ball and the receiver will run for a TD.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:47am 
Some race-based strategies available here:
NOTE: These might be using a different (more modern) version of the rulebook. Skills and team rosters may be slightly different due to that. But general team strategy should mostly be the same.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 1:00pm 
Some basic premises of the game:

Blood Bowl is supposed to be a fun game about gore, chaos and occasionally playing the ball. This is reflected in the game by throwing a lot of 6-sided dice (most of which are hidden into the background). The basic premise is that a roll of 1 always fails, and a roll of 6 always succeeds. In other words, even a move 3 strength 5 agility 1 Mummy can intercept a pass by rolling a 6, and you can pick up the ball with a move 6 Strength 5 agility Kroxigor from 3 opposing tackle zones with a roll of 6 for the pick up. If you think gore and chaotic events are fun, this game is for you.

How to get the odds in your favour:
1. Try to get 2 dice instead of 1 as often as you can.
example a) STR 3 player blocking + 1x Assist = STR 4 vs STR 3 defender -> 4 > 3, therefore 2 block dice, you choose.
example b) Sure Hands skill lets you re-roll a pick-up, Catch lets you re-roll a catch, etc.

2. Try to make things (die rolls) hard for your opponent
example a) you have no team re-rolls and think you will fail to pick up the ball this turn -> position other players next to the ball (normal move) before you attempt the pick up so that the enemy player will have a harder time to get to pick up the ball if you fail to pick it up
example b) you can usually position your ball carrier so that it's impossible for the enemy to blitz him next turn without a 5+ dodge or 2x 3+ dodges or at least 2x 2+ go for it squares
example c) picking up Block and Dodge skills makes it harder for your opponent to fall down your players with blocks
Azazel Oct 16, 2013 @ 1:22pm 
Felt I should point out that doing pointless passes early on is helpful in the long run for experience. If your ball carrier can easily score a touchdown and the other team isn't going to be able to get close enough to him in 2 turns anyway, you might as well take the risk and do a few pointless passes to level up a player or two before you run in for the touchdown.
Talamare Oct 16, 2013 @ 1:31pm 
If you are doing pointless passes for experience, make sure you do the safe rolls first

Nothing like losing a turn because one of your player decided to epic fail on the throw/catch
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 1:37pm 
How do some of the negative traits work and how to play with them:

I Loner
Loner means that the player will fail to use a team re-roll unless you roll 4+ for Loner. Thematically, Loners are not team players: they are either merceneries or big guys who like to kill and get personal glory who are not there for the team plays.

- you should never use Loners as ball carriers unless you absolutely have to, or if they have skill re-rolls which do not require using team re-rolls (Sure Hands, Catch)
- your block order should be 1. 2+ dice blocks with Block skill without Loner 2. 2+ dice blocks with Block Skills with Loner 3. 2+ dice blocks without Block skill without Loner 4. Critical ball-handling stuff 5. 2+ dice blocks without Block with Loner
- you should never Blitz with Loners if the Blitz is critical or related to the ball and if this can be reasonably substituted with another player
- ALWAYS avoid taking extra squares for movement (go for it) with Loners
- you should avoid scoring with Mercenaries because a touchdown is 3 EXP and you want those EXP for your regular players
- when the game is about to end (e.g. kick-off for 1 final turn), you should put mercenaries to the front line to get beaten so that your regular guys won't die.

II Wild Animal
Wild Animal means that the player is only interested in hitting standing enemies with a block or blitz action (2+ roll). Wild Animals are not interested in moving/passing/handing off the ball/kicking enemies on the ground = fouling (4+ wild animal roll required at the beginning of the move action). They are not even interested in standing up when they are prone unless it's a Blitz action to make them stand up (4+ roll for normal move stand up).

What's good about Wild Animal is that even when the WA roll fails, there is no turnover, and the WA does not lose its tackle zone.

The most famous WA is the Minotaur, who also has Frenzy, meaning that they will throw two blocks in a row and always follow up the pushback. Frenzy is the best for blitzing an enemy 2 squares away from the sideline into the crowd by choosing pushback twice. This makes defensive deployment vs a team with just 1 Frenzy player very difficult because the defense is tempted to leave the sidelines wide open to prevent casualties for their team. Also, Horns gives Minotaur +1 STR when Blitzing after taking at least 1 movement step. 5 + 1 from Horns + 1 Assists = 7. 7 > 2x 3 -> 3 block dice vs STR 3 with only 1 assist! Amazing! Although Wild Animal roll, on a 1 the Blitz is wasted...

How to play with Wild Animal:
- Position your guy on LoS in attack. (On defense, you might not even want to deploy a Wild Animal in some cases.) Position initially the WA next to as many enemies as possible. Because if there is no enemy to hit, you will have to spend a Blitz to move the WA anywhere even semireliably.
- Don't use WA for ball carrier, unelss you intend to blitz with the arrier every turn.
- Don't use WA as a part of a cage, because he can not reliably move anywhere.
- WA sucks vs agility 4 teams, who dodge away from the WA and then it's 4+ WA roll just to catch up the guy by moving next turn. Can be expected to happen every single turn in the game, unelss the enmy is a complete idiot (the AI on normal sure seems to be a complete idiot...).

How to play vs Wild Animal:
- Stay away. Dodge away. WA needs 4+ WA roll to move next to you if you keep clear from it, unelss it's a Blitz.
- If you have a more reliable STR 4+ player (e.g. Mummy), fall down the WA. The WA will then need to 4+ just to stand up, unless it's a Blitz.

III Bone-Head
Whenever a Bone-Head attempts anything, there is a 2+ roll for d'uh. If d'uh, the player just stands there (or lies on the ground there without standing up) and loses its tackle zone -> the enemy can freely run around him without having to dodge next turn. This makes Ogre team so challenging to play.

The most famous Bone-Head is the Ogre. The Ogre has decent stats (5 move 5 str 2 agility 9 armor), even AG 2 so he could try to pick up the ball with 4+, but whenever there is d'uh (frequently 2-3 times per half per Ogre), you just want to ragequit the game and kill the Ogre.

- Avoid using Bone-Heads for ball carriers (unless you have the Ogre team). Even if you get him in scoring range, he might just d'uh 3 turns in a row, and you might not score at all. And that sucks.
- Leave the Bone-Head blocks for last if they are currently assisting someone. When the player loses tackle zone, that assist is gone.
- Similarly, if a bone head has d'uhed in the past and lost tackle zone, you might want to block with him earlier in the turn if you need him to assist another block. Hoping he will not d'uh again.

How to play vs Bone-Head:
- Hope there is d'uh
- Remember which players have lost their tackle zone and abuse this by running circles around them

IV Really Stupid

Really Stupid is just like Bone-Head, but worse. If you have a non-Really Stupid team player next to the Stupid one, the d'uh roll for RS is 2+. If you don't the d'uh roll is 4+. SO you should always have one.

The most famous Really Stupid player is the Troll. Trolls are pretty much strictly worse than Ogres (4 move 5 strength 1 agility 9 armor), except they have Regenerate and cheaper price tag. But still, beginning Goblin teams with Trolls are likely to play better as a team than a beginning Ogre team with a bunch of Ogres (Later with a bunch of skills, the Ogres become rather insane and are far superior than the Goblin team though).

How to play with Really Stupid:
- Avoid carrying the ball with RS players (usually easy because they tend to have AG 1 so you don't want to anyways)
- don't leave them alone
- if you have to leave them alone, don't try to block if you need to keep the enemy still in your tackle zone. the attempt is not usually worth giving the enemy 1-2 free players
- RS str 5 players are at their best when they just stand still and keep 2x STR 3, AG less than 4 enemies occupied. They can not block the RS and as long as you don't try to use the RS for anything, there can not be any d'uh.

How to play vs Really Stupid:
- kill all the non-Really Stupid players, or otherwise push them away from the Really Stupid guy so that they can not make the d'uh roll into 2+.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 1:53pm 
Originally posted by Grilleds:
Felt I should point out that doing pointless passes early on is helpful in the long run for experience. If your ball carrier can easily score a touchdown and the other team isn't going to be able to get close enough to him in 2 turns anyway, you might as well take the risk and do a few pointless passes to level up a player or two before you run in for the touchdown.

As I mentioned earlier:
Originally posted by Karhumies:
1 MVP + 1 Pass = level <- check which of your guys has got 1 MVP from the team roster before the match and try to pass with them if you have extra time in the match!

The other way to do this is make 1 pass first, and hope the player will get MVP later for the level. It's a valid choice for leveling players who are not likely to get e.g. 1 casualty + MVP for the level through blocking.

When making senseless passes, be sure to stay away from the sidelines so that you do not fumble the ball into the crowd, a missed pass will not scatter into the crowd (missed pass will scatter 3 times into random direction and if it lands in an empty square, it will bounce once into random direction -> avoiding this can be very difficult), and your passer or catcher will not be blitzed into the crowd if there is a turnover.

In general, I think that senseless passing requires a AG 4 catcher or AG 3 catcher with Catch skill to be sensible. Throw range should be the shortest possible = within 3 squares. Thrower should have AG 2+ and the team re-roll available (AG 2 = 75% to pass with the RR). I consider the Catch skill to be critical for AG 3 and below catchers because nothing sucks more than attempting a senseless pass successfully, burning a team re-roll for the pass, and then the other guy fails to catch.

If you don't have these premises, then senseless passing only makes sense when
- it's the last turn of the half and neither team has any players in the scoring range
- you are sure to lose the match anyways (e.g. down 3-0) and don't care how many goals you lose it with, so you might as well just try to level up your guys

...but in general, I consider senseless passing in the beginning of a match to be an advanced strategy rather than something for new players to seriously consider. For new players, I recommend passing with a player who already has 5 EXP (so that the reward will be tangible) in a situation where a missed pass will not affect the outcome of the game, e.g. turn 8 kickoff (so that the risk for what happens if it fails is negligible).
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 2:12pm 
Knowing what to re-roll:

Your team does not have 8 team re-rolls. Therefore, you can not use a RR every turn. Therefore, you will need to choose which turns you need to have a re-roll available. Therefore, for every failure you need to ask yourself "Is this fail worth using a RR, or should I just accept the failure and save the RR?" Many new players burn their re-rolls as fast as possible without even thinking twice. Most of the time, this is the wrong choice.

Also, since we are limited to maximum 1 re-roll per turn, you should maximize utility from skill rerolls. In a AG3 team, it's a very good idea to have 1 player (or even 2) with Sure Hands. This can easily save you 1-2 re-rolls per half! Simialrly, if you intend to frquently pass or handoff the ball, or even make senseless passes for the first level, you should have a player with Catch in a AG 3 team to reliably catch them.

Some example situations:
1. Most of your other players have already done their actions. You have the ball, and the carrier is relatively safe. You star to throw some 1 die blocks with the remaining guys and get a skull. Is this worth a re-roll? Probably not.

2. Your Minotaur fails his Wild Animal roll to stand up as a move. Should you spend a team re-roll? Almost always absolutely not. WA is not a turnover. Also, he has Loner = 50% the re-roll is wasted in the first place. If the Loner roll succeeds, he has 50% Wild Animal roll to succeed standin up. In other words, 75% you lose the re-roll for the turn, 25% Minotaur stands up and so what? You should either make the Minotaur stand as a Blitz action in the first place if it is critical (only 16.67% failure rate), or just be content that there is a 50% failure rate and develop an alternative strategy.

3. You have set up a bunch of players close to the ball carrier. However, it was impossible to get assist without Guard. You managed to 1 die Blitz the Carrier without block on either player. Both teams are AG 3 teams and there is a bunch of tackle zones close to the ball carrier for both sides. The die is both down. Should you re-roll? Probably not. If you take the both down, the carrier will fall and lose the ball. There are so many tackle zones that neither side is likely to get the ball easily. If you re-roll, you would have 33% chance to fall the carrier with pushback (positive result), 16,76% result stays the same, 33% pushback only no falling (negative result) and 16,67% you fall by yourself (very negative result). Your expected value from the re-roll is negative, and you are not likely to have anyone able to pick up the ball anyways even if it is dropped without turnover.
karhumies Oct 16, 2013 @ 2:26pm 
What inducements to choose in the beginning, when playing vs higher Team Value AI teams?
If you have only 11 players in your roster, a 12th (possibly even 13th) player in roster is a very solid idea. If you have money to spare, take the player with a skill, e.g. Block or Guard or Tackle, check enemy team roster to know what skill is most useful.

Team re-rolls at 100k each are excellent bang for the buck (except if you are Halflings, and get Chef for 100k, price for other teams 300k). They are also easy to use (unlike some cards), not situational (unlike e.g. Bloodweiser babes) and it's hard to forget using them in the match.

What to avoid?
Although Star Players look really cool, they are overpriced for beginning teams. Having one good player with Loner in a mediocre skilless team will not help your team plays much at all.
InuYasha Double Hickory Smoke Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:03pm 
Basically don't do anything with higher than normal risk of turnover, and set up plays before your 16 turns runs out; realize every early turnover is not just a disappointment, but increases the chance that your scoring attempt will be pre-empted by halftime/endofgame. I think that actually the Morg star player is the only not overpriced player as that ST6 and those skills are perfect package, minus he could use surer hands. If your team has sub- St4 as the norm, Morg is a great buy for every match. The downside is he is a waste of experience point gain.
InuYasha Double Hickory Smoke Oct 16, 2013 @ 7:13pm 
One reason that goblins are ok for beginners is because stunty & dodge allows ignoring most of the zone-of-control rules, and its easy to pile them up on one target at a time. #1 Problem is the stock trolls are mostly useless, except to have one as a punching bag on the line. #2 Problem is none of them got good hands, so even though they should be awesome at running ball (especially pogoer) they lose a lot of turns just trying to get possession of the ball.

Ok beginner lineup: 1 troll, a bunch of gobbos, chainsaw and fanatic, and Morg'n (plus Ripper unless you'd rather buy the other stuff). Eventually train up a thrower/catcher and Pogoer.
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