Fend (General)

This player is very skilled at holding off would-be attackers. Opposing players may not follow-up blocks made against this player even if the Fend player is Knocked Down. The opposing player may still continue moving after blocking if he had declared a Blitz Action.


Fend is a new addition to the game and it has a few different effects on certain play styles. It has opened up some new tactics that weren’t previously there and can make skill choices a bit more diverse. Obviously the most apparent advantage is that opponents can’t follow up which means they won’t be in a position to just hit you again next turn unless you choose. It also means your player no longer needs to dodge away from them (you may need to dodge away from another opponent though depending on where you got pushed back to). This gives you the choice of if you want to move away somewhere else, or just tie up that same player that blocked you again.

Stopping opponents from following up after blocking you can also make it harder for them to manoeuvre their players. If they needed to follow up to assist a team mate for a block, you can prevent them doing so. Even if you get pushed back into another opposing tackle zone, the fact the blocking player can’t follow up means you may be in a position to easily get a block back against the player you do get left next to. Move in a team mate to assist and your players can do a block that wouldn’t be available had the opponent followed up. You can also slow down their progress down the pitch, this can be of great hassle to a caging team. The further you keep them from the endzone the harder it will be for them to score without exposing their ball carrier at some point.

Fend is also great for negating other skills on the opposing players. They can’t follow up for the second block if using Frenzy and it also will prevent them from using Piling On, which can be vital for keeping your players alive. If you combine the fact that your opponents will have less blocks against you as they won’t be standing next to as many of your players, less blocks from Frenzy and preventing Piling On, then you can really keep your players safer. This will save your team money in the long run from having to replace players as well as keeping your players on the pitch for more turns. Obviously having more of your players on the pitch will make games easier for you and should result in an improvement of results.

  • Slows Down Opponents
  • Less Dodges
  • Prevents Frenzy and Piling On
  • Less Blocking Opportunities for Opponents
Useful to:

Given what I’ve said above it appears that Fend would be useful for anyone who would prefer not to be stuck in a brawl. That could be quite a lot of players and while a whole team with Fend could certainly cause problems, there are also a lot of other skills for a lot of players to consider.

I would give it to the low armour linesmen who are often stuck in the way to get hit by the other team. This would be Skaven, the Elves, possibly Norse, Amazon and Humans as well. I wouldn’t select it as the first skill though, it makes a great second skill after Wrestle or perhaps Block or Dodge. Wrestle and Fend combine really well for slowing down caging teams and can protect these often victimised players.

The reason why you would pick Fend over perhaps Dodge is the fact that most of the time it isn’t going to get cancelled out. Dodge will be redundant when facing Dwarf teams or anyone else who has taken a fair amount of Tackle. Fend is only cancelled out by a player who is blitzing you with Juggernaut, this will be far, far less frequent an occurrence. Obviously the trade off is you can’t dodge as well, though you are back to square one if facing Tackle, while Fend will also give you turns where you don’t need to dodge anyway.

You may consider it as a skill on any ball carrier as well, it could make the difference between having to dodge away or not in your own turn if you survive being hit. However I prefer to try and not let my ball carrier get hit at all. Usually if they are getting hit, it will be from a blitz action ,where most of the time the blitzing player can just use another square of movement to follow up anyway, even after you use Fend. If you are stuck for ideas  though by all means consider it.

14 thoughts on “Fend”

  1. As coach has pointed out to me on the forums, this is one of the only current defences against deathsticks  (Piling on, Mighty blow, players) and I’m starting to think I need some players with it.

    Not sure where I rank it against block and dodge for survival boost, since it relies on an opponent using frenzy or piling on, but MB/PO is becoming more popular online at the moment……which is bad news for squishy teams 🙁

  2. Yes this is a skill I always give my Ball carriers. It can be great when they hit you but only get a pushback or something, there is a chance you will be free to run like the clappers on your turn without needing to dodge.

  3. Hi. I like your site a lot and it’s very usefull for my wood elfs team I’m playing in a league. Fend could be a really good second skill choise for my wardancers. In the league, more and more players are using Mighty Blow and Piling On.  With fend, they will think twice before blocking a jumping blodger player with the risk to leave him free to move next turn.
    I love your site, really!

  4. Hi Coach!

    I find that Fend is a valuable defensive skill, but even more importantly, a critical mobility skill for some teams. My Dwarf roster now includes Guard, then Fend as first development for Blockers. For a team like Dwarves with low mobility, positioning is crucial, and the ability to force an opponent to decide between marking you or hitting you is very important.

    • I have to agree here, Fend seems like one of those skills that can find real use on any team, even low movement high AV ones like Orcs and Dwarves for the mobility and tactical options it can provide. If Fend is optional like most other skills you can Frenzy bait or even just give the opponent the option to follow up if doing so would be unfavorable to them. Even if you just end up moving the guy back to mark, Fend and AV9 can be an absolute pain in the arse to take down.

  5. As a Khorne Daemon player, I WANT you to load your team with Fend. That might sound strange, but hear me out. You just negated the danger of Frenzy for me. Meaning, I can get a lot more aggressive with my Pit Fighters. As for blitzing, my dedicated blitzers come with Juggernaut. By pushing your team away, your only option to knock down one of my guys is with the one blitz you get a turn. Go ahead and laugh about how few of your team ends up injured. I will be when you’re stuck in your own half of the pitch with your team being bounced around like a bunch of pinballs.

      • Thought that it activated automatically. Or maybe the people I play with think it’s automatic. Either way, I’ll still stand by my view of Fend, but for another reason. The use of Fend Vs. Frenzy as a pressure tool. Forcing your opponent to think about activating a skill or not, and their next turn, is a good thing. At the start of the drive, whenever I get the ball, it’s going to happen at least 3 times in succession, doing a number on my opponent’s mindset. The obvious benefit of this is the possibility that the opponent plays at a lower level on their next turn, possibly making mistakes that can be exploited.

        • hi i got a team that have mostly fend and i playing some one i our league with khorne but i bet your worry about sidestep more than any other team

          • Side Step is a pain to any team, but it really messes with a Khorne team. It’s not as bad as Tackle to an Amazon team, but comes close. Fend + Side Step? Kryptonite to Khorne teams.

        • Honestly, I think you’re overstating the effect that Fend decisions will have on your opponent’s mind.

          In the same vein I could argue that me umming and ahhing over whether to use Fend or not each time the KD player throws a block is eventually going to bug him, making him prone to mistakes or risky blocks.

          But I don’t think any of these psychological aspects are provable or reliable.

  6. Knowing that “fend” is an optional skill, when does the coach declare if he is using it or not? I assume it is when the opponent announces if either or not he is wanting to “follow up” with the player who blocked but correct me if I’m wrong.
    Just asking because who ever talks first gives a precious information to his opponent about his plans. Wanting to follow-up or refusing to “fend” tells your opponent where you want your player or his player to be.


Leave a comment

Represent BBTactics in the BB3 (PC) Blood Bowl World Championship by signing up to play in the Big Crunch League