Monday, September 3, 2012

Blood Bowl Celestial Scrum Game 1 Report: Mystic Knights of the Congo Bongo

This weekend was the Blood Bowl Hedge Wizard Classic Invitational Cup: Celestial Scrum.
It must have been an invitational, since turn out was low. But game-time was competing against a big 40k tournament, flames of war as well as another game convention in a nearby city. There's some kind of drama between the two, which I am not clear on, nor do I care- just seems crazy for both to try to sit on the same weekend. Regardless, I woke up after a nice 3-hour sleep (ugh) put some gas in the car, stopped at a donut shop (just for you Anne) and drove the 1.5 hours to the Con.

I was quite looking forward to this, despite the game-time, because of my new team,The Mystic Knights of the Congo Bongo, an Ape team.  Since there is no official Ape Roster I ran them under the Human roster, you can find my team roster for the tournament here. My friend Dan, who was running the tournament (you may remember him from playing High Elves at West Coast Quake the last two years, and the owner & player of the Picnic Pillagers halfling team) asked "What's with you? A new team every tournament, where is your loyalty?" To which I have to respond... I make new teams more often than I get a chance to play, and I love all my children, they all deserve a chance to play!  And this was the Time of the Apes.

Game 1 was against Skaven, The Running Rats. Interestingly enough, the Rats were coached by the man who first taught me to play Blood Bowl, some... 18-20 years ago? Holy Crap time moves right along.
This guy definitely knows his Blood Bowl: he's one of the best players I know, and coaching what might be the best team in the game for winning tournament games, and me having never played humans in all these 18-20 years (yep, it's true, I just never bothered to field a Human Team) I got ready for a tough game.

The Running Rats had 12 players: Thrower, 2 Blitzers, 3 Runners & 6 linerats.  He had an apothecary, 3 rerolls (with Leader), an accurate thrower, a blodging runner and 2 nerves of steel runners, tackle blitzer and strip ball blitzer and a block linerat & kick linerat.  He would make good use of the kick and nerves of steel!

No Fame advantage, I won the coin toss and elected to kick: just rip the band-aid off & get it over with.

-Game brought to you by Happy Killer Clown Burgers: We put the Laughter in Slaughter. -

I set up thin, trying to cast a net for these rats.  Each flank had a guard & frenzy Blitzer Gorilla. I kicked and it went deep and to my right.
Kick off result was a riot.. my kind of fans! so the Half would be just 7 turns.  His thrower went after the ball and Sluggo went after the thrower! Mugambo, the great Silverback (Ogre) first chance went Bone-Head (see the little white bone head near him?) which means he could do nothing that turn.
Watch for it, you'll see this a lot more.
The Skaven were having none of it, and put Sluggo down into the turf. 
The rats then grabbed the ball, threw, caught and scored, Turn 2.  yeah, that's how Skaven do it. 

-You can see how I handle my skills: i paint the upgrade skill on the base edge, so there is no confusion about who has what skill. Easy to do and easy to paint over afterwards. 

The inevitable out of the way, we're ready to play.  You might ask, why kick to them first then?  Now I'll have the ball, the idea being, hold it, beat the snot out of them, score at the end, cripple them so that I then score again in the second half when he first kicks to me.  That's the plan anyway. 

He nearly got the ball away from me here! Sneaky Rats! 

Soon he did get it, knocking Doc Zaius down!  Zaius is Knocked Out, and goes to the Knock Out Box.. that hurts! Balancing the ball on his head as he runs off to score just salts the wound. 

He kicks to me... 
Little Inka-Martishka, the catcher recovers the ball.  The apes go wild trying to smack a way through the rats

-The celestial finger of Nuffle points out a Gorilla who is offensive in his sight-

She tried to throw it to Rainforest Gump, the other catcher, but the throw scattered and landed behind him... I knew I should have taken diving catch! Notice Mugambo is Bone-Head again! it is only a 1 in 6 chance, but I can hit those odds all day & night.  I really should gamble.  I did manage to get the ball, hand it off to Gump, who ran in for a Touchdown. 

The half end at 1-2. Uh-oh. 

Bartok the Gorilla Blitzer is injured and Doc Zaius decides he's more comfortable where he is, and refuses to get back on the pitch.  Not good news!

-Here you can see the wizard frogs: plastic frogs waiting for any who turn into frogs, and very nice metal mini frogs on a spellbook under a wizard hat: free swag for the tournament participants! cool! 

The rats have taken some hits too though! The blocking linerat is injured as well as a chump, and 2 more, including a runner, don't recover from their knock-outs.  Good news! 
So the rats are at 8 on the field and apes are at 9. I have the advantage, but rats are good at running around!

He kicks to me, and Inka-Martishka decides to fill in for Zaius. A well placed kick keeps it away from my right-side drive plans and close to his own runner.  '
Rainforest Gump comes across behind my line as I shift my drive and start some pounding. 

Rats go down (one of these will be injured) and Gump makes his way to the end zone... He scores! 
The game now tied at 2-2. The Rats with just 7 on the pitch.  Skaven are an amazing team, but a bit fragile.

The Skaven thrower passes the ball to a runner, but what is this??  The crowd roars with delight as Inka-Martishka snatches the ball from the air! It's an Interception! 
She runs for the right with her prize as the Apes protect her from pursuit. 

She stalls at the end of the field a bit, trying to insure the rats won't have time to tie it up again.  
The monkey does her victory dance in the end zone. She's definitely the MVP of the match!

Final result: 3-2 : Win.   Casualties: 3-2. 
Fun Fact: 2 of the injuries I caused were Deaths (!), and the other was a stat bust, so the apotho never got the call, held waiting for a badly hurt that he might be able to influence, but it never came. 

A great game and very close.  
The Tournament had rules for hedge wizards: got to use them each half, random spell: 
pick a target, roll: 1: nothing, 2-4: frog, 5: fireball, 6: lightning blot. 
if Frog, then it is random: 5+ target is hit, 1-4: it scatters that many times & hits anyone under that spot. 
But the wizard effects didn't have much impact on our game. 

I like the Human Roster! It's not as tough as the dedicated bash-teams, but very flexible, it really can do everything, even if it doesn't excel at anything. It needs more rerolls than I took (3) since with agility 3, if trying to handle the ball, bad dice are going to happen and only agility 4 can get around that some. 

I like playing Big-Guys but my luck isn't suited to them.  I rolled the "1" for Bone-Head 6 times in 15 turns. Over twice what is statistically likely.  

I liked having 2 frenzies.  Sure, it's most useful for a blitz and you can only do one of those, but having the threat of two, one for both side-lines, with the chance to push people off the field, has a value independent of actual use.  I really really like wrestling linemen.  

The team really started to FEEL like an Ape-Team. The ape-appropriate skills, seeing apes, not humans, I felt I was playing apes and really enjoyed the theme of the team. 

So that's Game 1, I'll be back soon with Game 2! 
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed the game!

Enjoy the stadium music as the Apes celebrate on the field....

Those Skaven bit the dust, they couldn't take the pressure
Those Apes knocked them around, they only wanted to have fun... 


Anne said...

What kind of filling was in the doughnut Ferret! These guys look great on the table and they did well for you to boot.

Remember when I told you that I three other characters that went with your figure in my story. I'm painting them now and I was wondering if I could borrow three names from your bloodbowl team for them. I mean, you are a god and you did create them, so it only seems fitting that they bear names you created as well!! Let me know!

Laughing Ferret said...

No filling, didn't want it messy when driving... chocolate covered buttermilk donut. yum.

Of course, feel free to use whatever you'd like- never a problem.

Thanks, I was happy with how the team looked on the field- can't say the same for how they always performed, but more on that to come ;)

Jay said...

Congratulations on your victorious monkeyin' around.

Anne said...

Chocolate covered is good and buttermilk on a buttermilk doughnut-why that's a slice of heaven.

M R Lee said...

Congrats on the win, and definitely near the end you were even writing it as if it was naturally an Ape team instead of Human team. Always impressed with the story you put behind the game as well.

Also, with your luck on the big guys.. I think you would do great with an Ogre team ;) Just saying :)

Brummie said...

They look even better on the field great AAR.

Laughing Ferret said...

Thanks all :)

MRLee: I really did 'feel' them as an Ape team, it was great. One down side, I did have to pause now and then when blocking with a Blitzer, bc they look and seemed like they should be strength 4 ;) But Guard helped to make them effectively strength 4 pretty often. Ogres.. yeah, awesome.. I could roll Bone head an average of 40 times a game! ;) That said, i do have some minis siting around that I've been planning to make into an Ogre team, when I find the time :)

Michael Awdry said...

Excellent work Sir, a cracking first outing for the Mystic Knights of the Congo Bongo.

Paul of the Man Cave said...

Great report coach - very cinematic, I could feel the crowd roar! An interception can be a gamer changer if its played well and you certainly did that. Well done on the win mate, looking forward to more.

Thantsants said...

Cracking game - glad the simians came up trumps for you -

Top banana!

Tristan M said...

Great work! I was going to suggest the ogre could be a liability - but it definitely suits this particular team!

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