Building a Band of Boys for a Tourney

Entry 9
Transcribed by his goblin scribe, Ian H. McKinley

OK, scribe, little buddy, start writing.

Good day loyal reader.

So, I promised you a while back I’d explain to you how I, the great Gorn N’hleg, would build a team of Black Orcs for tourneys. Well, this is the chronicle entry that’ll do just that. Lys Bowl’s comin’ up and I want to win it! There’s some good prizes and it’s being held in a colony of Bretonnia, so there’s likely to be some decent wine.

OK, as I noted in the last entry about the re-draft, it’s really, really important to have some Lads who can Block. So, although my league players don’t like playin’ in tourneys, I spoke to Ad’aam Bigkill and Slag Killdwarf about comin’ on-board … oh, and Fillip Break!, too, ’cause he can tackle. Havin’ a tackler in a tourney’s always a good thing. It’s a pity Black Orcs ain’t quick … that’ll be a problem for your tackler, but you’re still better havin’ one. And I’ll get to the business about a quick tackler a bit later when I speak about what kinda Gobbos you want on your team.

Anyway, Ad’aam, Fillip, and Slag agreed to come along for the wine and the prospect of some good’ol proper slaughtering. Those of you who read every entry in my chronicle will know that I’ve learnt a lot through league play. I carried this over into Lys Bowl. You need the full line-up of strength. You need the Trained Troll to anchor the line and free up the Lads. The Lads you need to spread out so as to protect the Gobbos, so you’ve really got to have the big guy and all six Blorcs.

So, you know I figured I needed at least two Lads who knew how to lay down a block and I wanted one who could drop dodgy opponents, like those accursed Wardancers I hate so much. With the budget bein’ tight, it’s tough to get more lads in unless you cut elsewhere, and I don’t wanna do that. Because …

I got a Trained Troll who knows how to Block! 

Yeah, Orcling, yeah! 

Now, remember what I said in the last chronicle entry when I go on about take-aways: you don’t want to activate Barfur Slovenly all the time, but if you’ve got protection and there’s no way opponents can slip past the line because of him goin’ all stupit on you, then let him off the leash. If he can lay down a proper block five times a half, your opponent’s gonna be hurtin’.

Finally, I considered what I needed in Gobbos and went out and got two who could bring something useful to the line-up. I was really tempted to get a Goblin with Sure Hands, but in the end, I reckon it’s better havin’ one who knows how to stomp an opponent when he’s down and there’s no one better in the business than Konvizz Yeux, a right Sneaky Git if I ever saw one.

As for that business about more mobile tacklers, I decided to go get a Gobbo who knows how to do a Diving Tackle. It’s a great skill. Opposing coaches often don’t remember to account for it. It’s absolutely mental if you can also get a sidestepping diving tackler, but I couldn’t afford that. But even just havin’ a Gobbo with Diving Tackle on your team accomplishes a couple of things;

Thing One: If a lone opponent has run deep, havin’ a diving tackler effectively takes one movement off the opposing player. To get rid of the Gobbo, the opponent’ll likely Blitz, pushing the Gobbo away. Now, as long as you don’t get the Gobbo to go between the player and the end zone, then he’s not going to be a square closer after the Blitz Action. As they say in this colony of Bretonnia: Voilà! He’s sacrificed a point of movement to avoid the risk of bein’ tackled.

Next Thing: Havin’ the diving tackler effectively adds a square of movement to that Black Orc tackler on your roster! “Huh?” you ask. Sure. Think about it. Let’s say you’ve got your tackler right in the middle of the pitch, but held in reserve so he can’t be tagged and bogged down. Then, say, some pansy dodger zips down a flank near the sideline. The pansy knows how far your Black Orc can lumber, so he stays out of range, right up against the touchline. Normally, at best your Black Orc can tag the dodger after Rushing. Now imagine if your Black Orc’s got the help of your diving tackler! You flank the Black Orc with the Goblin, and now the whole Blitz the Gobbo away and dodge off becomes a lot less certain because you’ve still got a tackler next to the ball-carrier.

Now is a perfect time to quote, as I am contractually obligated to do, that Blood Bowl sage, Taureau Amiral, who said in Part Five of his Art of Coaching:

5.6. The number of tactics making use of Agility is as inexhaustible as the fuel supply of a chainsaw.

So, that diving tackler’s just drawn down the fuel supply of the chainsaw a bit! Hehehe.

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Here, scribe, copy down the roster we had to send in to the Tourney Organizers. Make sure our sigil looks great or I’ll strangle you. Yeah, I know they speak a form of Elfish, but our loyal readers mightn’t understand. Just use the tongue of this chronicle, proper Orcish.

I’ll let all you loyal disciples know how Lys Bowl unfolds. But take it from me, those other teams ain’t gonna know what hit ’em after we’re done with ’em!

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