Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hobgoblin Blood Bowl: toying with team building

Anyone who's been playing Blood Bowl for a long time knows there are many more unofficial teams out there than there are official teams.  Everything from all forest spirits, to dragonmen, demon teams & more.  Probably too many to count.  And most fans of the game have tinkered with creating their own roster.  So I don't know if this team has already been created (or how many times: someone may have already made a Hobgoblin team) but I've had it in my head for awhile that it would be fun to have a 'Hobgoblin team'. Not a Chaos Dwarf team with nothing but hobgoblins... those are subjugated and broken hobgoblins. I mean a Hobgoblin team independent and taking the field for their own purpose.

There are a few key issues to keep in mind when designing a new roster:

1. What 'tier' will the team be? 
If not Tier 2 or 3, then you might run into resistance from other players, thinking you are just trying to cherry pick the best of everything.  If your linemen look like Jordell Freshbreeze you're doing it wrong.

2. Are you creating something that is vastly different than anything else in the game?  
If so you're likely to run into serious resistance to your idea.  Flying or teleporting players are probably going to break the game.  Space Marines are going to break the game.

3. Are you reinventing the wheel?  
Is your new team no different than one that is already out there?  Look at the other teams for guidance. A Pro Elf team and a Wood Elf team are very similar, but different enough that they will play differently.  Pro elves will rely more on their catchers & Wood Elves their wardancers.  An Undead & Necromantic team are similar since they share many of the same players: but the different players they have & the different skills cause them to play differently. A subtle difference may be all you need, but there should be a difference.

4. Run your idea by other people and play test it. 

5. Be ready to have some people reject it & hate it for no other reason than it is not official canon.
You could have the best idea in the world, but some won't approve of it because it doesn't have the official stamp. That's O.K. you don't have to please everyone: different people have different acceptance levels for such things.

So on to the team I made:

Thoughts behind this:

I wanted a team that would be a 'Tier 1' team, but not at the top end of the tier.  Being a goblinoid race, I reasoned they'd be similar to Orcs, more-so than Goblins because of their warrior culture and being larger than goblins.  For power level I was aiming at about Human-team level, maybe a bit below,and certainly less powerful than an Orc team.  

The Hobgoblin lineman stat is taken right from the Chaos Dwarf Hobgoblins: a basic no-frills lineman. 
Since goblins might hang around them, I allowed 2 on their team, which is half what the orc team can have. 
I am on the fence about renaming the goblins as something like 'runts' or 'gnoblars', but since they are identical to goblins I'm leaving them named that for now. 

Since Orcs have a thrower and I wanted this team to play a little differently than Orcs, I gave them no thrower, but they have up to 2 runners instead.  This gives them a chance to play a game similar to dark elves, but not as well since they have less agility. 

The Runners of the Hobgoblins are the sneakier members of the tribe, so I gave them side-step.  That should set them along a semi-survivable career path,  and make them annoying to play against.  It also makes their first skill choice an interesting one: do they go with dodge for being a squirrelly ball carrier, or block, to be a resilient one with defender possibilities?  

The Blitzers are similar to orcs, but with less armor.  Also, the team can only have two of them...half the number of blitzers means they'll have a tougher time playing cage, which makes them quite different to orcs just from that.

The Bugbears are pretty different. More from D&D Hobgoblin lore, but they seem to fit well enough so I don't think I'm violating the 'nothing vastly different' rule.  They are very similar to Norse Werewolves, but they don't move as fast.  You could also look at them as frenzied Black Orcs: they move 5 instead of 4, but have less armor.  Point-cost here was tricky: They have a net of 1 skill over a Black Orc, since they lost one stat increase and gained another of equal value.  But Norse Werewolves have a move of 6, and movement being tied to Frenzy for it's effectiveness I decided the Bugbears made more sense to be valued at 90k than 100k. But it's a tough call.  Bugbears will make this team very different than Orcs: the frenzy is a double-edged sword, and with just 2 instead of 4 black orcs, that means the center line can't be as strong as for Orcs, and Bugbears might make good cage breakers, but they won't make good cages themselves.

Lastly the Ogre.  I'd first thought of a Troll for the Big Guy, but a friend suggested the Ogre, and thinking about it, I agree.  The Ogre is a better piece in general than the troll, so will help balance out the Hobgoblins who have less block & armor than many other teams. Also, it fits in with their heritage and region of the world they are from.

After that, it was just a matter of appropriate re-roll cost and 6 suitable star players.
Scrappa was not chosen since he's more 'goofy' than the slightly more serious-minded Hobgoblins, and the Hobgoblin star was a must.  I made a pointed decision to have no Chaos Dwarf star players since the free Hobgoblins would have nothing to do with them.

So that's the Hobgoblins.
Will it ever become official?  I doubt it, but one can always hope.
I think it's a fun team, and will probably build one, though I'll be ready to use it to count as other teams.  


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...