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Elves in the Open League

Discussion in 'Team Blogs' started by Gallows Bait, Nov 15, 2010.

  1. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Well, I just thought I'd write a little something after deciding to take the challenge of playing online back up once more tonight. I've only played online (as opposed to single player on cyanide) a handful of times with a human team so far, but I've really been enjoying the Elf team and wanted to see how I got on.

    Now, I'll warn you, my team is a little unconventional. The wisdom I've read so far is that the Elves have a great throwing game and the Catcher is the highlight of the team, one of the best in the game. Well, my Elf team starting roster was this:

    2 x Blitzer
    1 x Thrower
    8 x Lineman
    3 x Re-roll
    1 x Apothecary

    Now, I did think long and hard on this one, and I did take into account my single player experiences. Overall I find the Elves take a lot of injuries, so I was keen to see if it improved with a starting Apothecary. I was also keen to take the 3 re-rolls if I could, in order to improve my chances when it comes to the blocks. With only the two blitzers having any skills useful for keeping them on their feet, I found my elves hit the floor a lot at the wrong moments, so I wanted to improve their chances.

    I've also found that adding the catchers in later improved the chances of my linemen getting star player points immensely.

    Having played a first game now, in hindsight I would have gone with 4 re-rolls and risk not having the apothecary for the first game, but I chose the safer option.

    My current record so far (well, only one game, but still)

    W-D-L
    0-1-0

    I was matched up against a fellow freshly picked Chaos team - 4 warriors, 7 beasts, 3 re-rolls.

    Overall I'd have to say I had a mixture of luck, but when it came to injuries I think I was lucky. The final result was 1-1 but with only 2 spots with a little more luck I could have won 3-0, but more on that later.

    The game, from my point of view started well - I set up and kicked, the crowd immediately rained stones onto the pitch - a Chaos Warrior on the LoS was knocked out, saving one lineman a S4 block and putting numbers in my favour.

    The kick led to 6 turns of the Chaos team forming up the cage and pushing it down pitch, fairly successfully, though I did manage to keep blocking any attempts to send out recievers for throws, the cage was getting closer and closer to the end zone and I was running out of players still standing on the pitch to stop them. Overall I only had 2 knocked out results to worry about, no serious injuries, so I was quite pleased to have lasted on their drive so well.

    Then came the drama of the first half. On turn 7 I managed to blitz the ball carrier at the rear of his cage with a lucky 1 die block on one of the beastmen. A block on a second beastman in at the corner of the cage knocked him down and back - onto the loose ball. It bounced off two Chaos players and my blocking Elf before bouncing past him - crucially up the pitch away from my end zone. My lineman ran for it, successfully picking up the ball and moving a few vital squares up pitch, past the halfway line and into the opposition half. My few remaining standing elfs tried to form up to shield him from the ensuing charge.

    Turn 8 came and I still had the ball. I checked the range, my lineman could make it, but would have to go for it twice to do so. I ran for it... splat, my lineman stumbled as I failed the first roll. No re-rolls left in the bank, turnover, half time, still 0-0.

    My unconscious players made it onto the pitch for the second half, the Chaos Warrior did not, 11-10 in my favour. Kick off saw me set up heavily to the right side, ready to push forward. 3 Elves ready to block the LoS warrior on one side and try and make a hole. The kick off gave me a free square of movement and I cemented my position - and pulled the other linemen off their LoS opponants, saving them a beating. The first turn saw my blocks and blitz open the right hand side up and push a loose cage up and, more importantly, a lineman rushing forward to act as a receiver. My thrower scooped up the ball and settled in ready for the throw - hoping upon hope my receiver wouldn't get blitzed.

    Luckily for me, the Chaos player wasted his blitz on my cage and in the second turn I was able to blitz the only beastman likely to intercept. My thrower rushed forward with a pass right down the sideline and my receiver ran in the touchdown - a rare 2 turn touchdown for me. 1-0 after 10 turns, though I was worried I'd rushed it and would regret giving them so many turns to drive back at me.

    The next kick off once more blessed me kindly - my players once more in their defensive screen, I was worried about the LoS again. Once more the thrown stones of the crowd saved me and I was left grinning as a second warrior was knocked out cold by one of the missiles. 11-9 in my favour, I didn't think it could go wrong...

    The ball was kicked nice and deep, the Chaos team, barring one beastman, was set up right forward. They picked up the ball deep and concentrated on the bashing. I did my best, but this time around my luck ran out, I blitz the left side closest to the deep ball carrier, got a lineman free to challenge for the ball, but the rest of the team were trying to hold back the rampaging Chaos line.

    The turns passed inexoribly as their ground their cage down through my ranks, I lost two to knock outs, one stunned by a crowd surf and one badly hurt. Turn 15 saw the 3 squares out and all but one of my elves on the ground. I had to dodge out from a warrior to blitz the beast who was about to score. The dodge failed, my elf was stunned on the ground and the beastman walked in the touchdown.

    A last turn saw a pitch invasion with 4 elves lying stunned on the ground, but no way for me to score in a single turn from kick off, I made a dash anyway, but that was it, end of the game 1-1.

    Looking at it, I was lucky with the armour rolls, against Chaos it could have been much worse. I got a lucky break also when my receiver wasn't blitzed alone in the backfield, allowing me to score when my opponant worried about the cage too much.
    But I think I did well to hold back the cage in the first half, and the touchdown I scored was planned right from kick off and I made that play happen through my deliberate blitz and I was pleased with it. I used tacklezones much more than straight up blocks, so I'm learning my lessons there slowly, and it still kept the cage back for the most part.

    Most importantly though, I got through unscathed and enjoyed it, picking up 60k in winnings and with my thrower levelling up. I chose Accurate, a little bit of overkill for AG4, but I still like it as a first choice - Nerves of Steel and Sure Hands will be next in line for him though, I like to know I can get the ball and clear it even in a tight spot.
     
  2. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    I'm not the expert, but from what I hear that starting roster is a pretty smart way to go. The Catchers are definitely the stars of the team but if you start with them they accrue spp at the expense of your other players, because it's just too tempting to throw it to them.

    Enjoyed the post. It will be interesting to see how the team develops. There don't seem to be a great many elf teams online, and one thing I'd warn you about is that once your team develops a lot a majority of teams you play are going to be bash teams, so good luck, you have a challenge ahead of you.

    It seems like you have a good plan for the team though. One thing I'd strongly advise is to take a protection skill for your thrower, most likely block. There will be a game when you lose a few players and your thrower is under a bit of pressure, and if you lose your thrower it doesn't matter what skills you have.
     
  3. Etheric

    Etheric Well-Known Member

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    I do like accurate even with agi 4, maybe it is just my rolling.

    For a medium pass with agi 4 and pass it is 4+
    75% accurate
    16.7% fumble
    8.3% inaccurate

    I have failed so many of those :(

    With the accurate skill it becomes a lot more reliable 3+

    89% accurate
    5.5% fumble
    5.5% inaccurate

    I normally find myself with a medium pass to pull off, getting close enough for a short pass is tough. And a fumble normally leaves you very exposed at least with my normal tactics of holding the passer deep in your half with little protection, and trying to get a receiver free, then you run up and attempt the pass (normally quite close to his players).
     
  4. Coach

    Coach Administrator Head Coach

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    I think you mean a Long Pass rather than a Medium Pass which doesn't exist.

    Quick Pass -> Short Pass -> Long Pass -> Long Bomb

    I'm also a fan of taking accurate first for an Elven Thrower though.

    @Etheric, it sounds like you may need to adjust your tactics a bit though, you shouldn't really need to take Long Passes all that often. Move -> Quick / Short Pass -> Move -> Hand Off -> Move will get the ball nearly the entire length of the pitch in one turn.
     
  5. coachman

    coachman Well-Known Member

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    If you are creating a team for matchmaking you should not buy an apoth to start.

    If the dice hate you and the team is trashed you can roll another team and try again.
     
  6. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Well, since the Cyanide server seems not to be letting me in right now, I'll take the time to write up my second game (hoping it saves it to their servers of course, but who knows...)

    I hit the MM button once more with my almost-rookie line up and this time up came a fresh out of the box Orc team.

    4 more strength 4 players, this time Black Orcs, gulp.

    I set up with my spread defence having chosen to kick (see I did learn something from the articles!). I crossed my fingers and kicked off. The ball went deep, but there was an Orc thrower ready to scoop it up, so I knew I'd have a tough time against their cage if it formed.

    The kick off did not go well for me. One lineman knocked out right from the start after a black orc pounded him into the dirt. My thrower followed to a black orc blitz also, and the others on the line of scrimmage hit the dirt without major injury. Two orc linemen pushed through the gaping hole in my line and headed forward as though ready to receive.

    I blitzed one side to try and push one lineman through towards the ball carrier, while the rest of my elves did their best to screen the forming cage and keep the potential recievers in check. The rest of the first half seemed to follow much of the same pattern, but the Orc player kept his cage quite loose and I was dodging and throwing blocks and blitzes as best I could to either slow him down or try and get to the ball carrier. The strength of the Orcs was going against me though and I lost two of my elves badly hurt (no longer term effects thankfully) and two more were knocked out. At the end of the half I was throwing one die blocks, blitzes using 3 or more dodge rolls and anything I could to just try and stop their ball carrier making it to the line. I even knocked it free deep in my own half on turn 6, but I wasn't able to capitalise on it.

    I was lucky though, that the Orcs fumbled picking up the ball again. Turn eight saw my team holding on raggedly, but I had to just cross my fingers and hope that with all the blocking and blitzing he was doing, he wasn't going to be able to send anyone with enough movement for the ball or that he didn't throw it. Eventually he did try to pick up and throw the ball to the closest orc to the end zone, but the pick up failed. Turnover, end of half.

    Phew, I'd survived 0-0 at half time, and I though 2 badly hurt was getting off lightly. Sure, I had 4 knocked out, but some of them were bound to get up, right? I'd also had the good fortune to knock out one orc, so I might get lucky and not be too outnumbered.

    Well, no, only one of them stood up. I was left with 6 elves facing of against 10 orcs for the second half. I was going to need a very lucky break to get anyone through their line and try for scoring, especially with my thrower one of the elves unconscious in the dug out.

    I caught a break from the Orc player, he spread a heavy line right up at the centre, but with one orc less on the side the line of scrimmage was one orc lineman in the middle and one black orc at each edge, there was little behind them, the rest of the team close to the wings. I thought with a little luck I could open that into a hole for scoring.

    I set my 6 remaining elves up with a lineman and a blitzer on each end of the line of scrimmage, facing off against the black orcs to give me 1 die blocks, and one lineman in the centre, but a square back from the orc, ready to try for a 1 die blitz. My remaining lineman set up further back to gather the kick and act as an impromptu thrower.

    The kick off went my way with a free square of movement, which got my rear lineman under the ball, which he promptly caught.

    My blitzers each took their 1 die blocks against the black orcs, and fortune smiled, both of them were knocked back and down, one even knocked out. This left only the middle orc, my centre lineman blitzed and I knocked him down too. The blitzing elf ran as far forward as I could and his go-for-it rolls held up. I ran the two remaining line of scrimage lineman through the hole to act as a shield for the expected receiver. My lineman thrower rushed forward with the ball and tossed it to the receiver, I only needed a 2 to catch it...

    ...It failed, a 1, and so did the re-roll, another 1. But instead, it bounced right into the hands of one of my guarding linemen, not great, but at least I held it.

    The next turn was a nail biter as I hoped upon hope that the slower orcs would struggle to get to my ball carrier. They did, but the plucky elf clutched that ball tight and was only pushed back when he got blitzed. My next turn, all I had to do was rush forward and score, I'd need to go-for-it though.

    Kind of familiar, huh, yup, just like the last match. My lineman fell, stunning himself. No two turn touchdowns for me.

    It was turn 10 for the orcs now, they retrieved the ball while my prone lineman simply watched and groaned in pain. I was back to trying to stop a cage full of orcs from trambling over my fragile elves and scoring as many times as they liked. As they pushed down the field it became more and more desperate. My elves were dropping like flies or being left stunned on the pitch squares behind. An orc rushed for the corner of the endzone, stopping one square short ready for the next turn. I tried to push one of my few standing players down the pitch, making some desperate dodges and finally a 1 die blitz on the ball carrier. Success, I knocked down the orc, but the ball bounced clear, right off the side line!

    The crowd throw in didn't help much either and the ball landed close to a crowd of orcs in the middle of brawling with two elves. The orc player blocked my remaining blitzer and I sidestepped him onto the grounded ball as he fell - I figured it might get lucky and bounce further from the line. It didn't, it bounced right into the hands of a black orc. The black orc was 2 turns from walking the ball in even at his lowly pace. I tried to stop it, but the last remaining elves, except for 2 who were left far behind in the orc half of the pitch, were battered off the pitch. On turn 16 the orcs walked in the touchdown.

    End of game and I'd lost 0-1, but it had taken the orcs 16 turns to do it against my 11 fragile elves, and I'd only kicked off the 2nd half with 6! At the final whistle 3 were badly hurt, but no long term effects. 6 more elves lay unconscious and only 2 stood, or lay, on the pitch. But I'd gotten away with no serious injuries and I felt pretty pleased with the final score, considering the battering. I'd not had great luck, but I'd come close to taking the lead in turn 10 and spent 14 of the turns defending and keeping the green tide back without failing until I was down to 2 players.

    If I can get back online, I'll see if any skills have rolled up, but I doubt it - one completed throw and an mvp are my total haul and they're unlikely to fall on one player.

    Edit: Nope, its completely forgotten the match, no record of it whatsoever. Shame really, even though it was a loss.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  7. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    That sounds like a really tough game. I'm quite new to the game myself, and for what it's worth with Orcs you played a team that for me are one of the best early in development. Elves need a few skills to perform at their optimum. Having said that Orcs are generally a tough match up at any TV.

    One thing that jumps out is that you seem to be taking a lot of one dice blocks, and I'd try and avoid them at all costs. If you have no choice then try and use a blitzer but you will have to be very lucky to outbash an Orc team with Elves. On defence it's better to try and use positioning to slow their advance, tie up those strong players with expendable linemen and wait for a good opportunity to win the ball.

    One of the drawbacks of playing mm is that you will be playing a lot of bash teams, so try and play to your strengths instead of theirs. If you can position players a square in front of the cage and limit their blitzes to one player per turn it can cut down on injuries and if they still score elves have the ability to respond quickly.

    The way to win is to make as few dice rolls as possible while forcing your opponents to make lots and lots, and its something you will get better at with practice. I've been playing online for about four months now and I'm still not there yet.

    Also you might want to look into joining a private league which can give you more variety in terms of opposition. I know a coach called BBlaze is in the process of setting up an all-elf league for example but there's plenty of options if you look around.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  8. Coach

    Coach Administrator Head Coach

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    Sounds like a good match and you did well to stop him scoring.

    I'm not sure how you are using your Blitzers but with Side Step they are great at stalling the progress of the ball carrier, or forcing them into doing a hand off.
     
  9. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    I think they would have been more use if I hadn't been so badly outnumbered trying to get in to the ball carriers. The orc player was pretty good with his cage, tightening it up as it moved down pitch and positionining outlying players around to stop me getting 1 die blocks around the edges or rear where possible. When I did get close and position next to the ball carrier, the numbers and strength of the orcs tended to end my attempts.

    It was a lot of fun as a match though, only really found it disappointing not to score my own touchdown, similar to the previous match, but those are the breaks - more re-rolls and maybe sure feet would help me out I think.
     
  10. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Well, another night, another game online. I'm having to mentally keep track of my record with yesterday's loss not recorded, but aside from that all is well.

    Today Matchmaking saw me face off against a 1,000pt Ogre team - yikes, these opponants just get bashier and bashier. This time It's 5 strength 5 mighty blow ogres - and I thought the black orcs and chaos warriors were bad enough.

    So, how was this one going to play out? I was nervous, against computer opposition the mighty blow skill has pulped my team into the serious injury box over and over and I didn't think there was going to be much change now.

    Once more I drew the kick at the coin toss and set up as best I could and mentally kissed goodbye to my line of scrimmage as they faced off against 4 of the ogres. One more stood off in the rear, the wings only guarded by snotlings but with the ogres spread as best they could.

    The ogres smashed into my line, pushing snotlings into the gaps in order to ensure not just 2 dice blocks, but 3 - my scrimmage line crumpled, one stunned, one knocked out and one badly hurt - leaving me down to 9 on the pitch before I'd even moved. Ogres pushed forwards whilst the rear moved towards the ball.

    On my turn I followed my previous tactics - holding as best I could against the torrent, whilst a blitzer and lineman from my left flank rushed to try to steal the ball. Things played out similarly to how they had against the orcs - with numbers on their side it got harder and harder and eachc successful block and blitz reduced my strength. A second player was wounded, this time with a miss next game injury - I held my apothecary back, fearing a more disabling injury. More of my elves were knocked out and carried from the pitch, but overall I kept them back until close to the end. The ogre ball carrier pushed onto the right wing, and it took all I could to put two elves up against him, dodging their way into position.

    A third elf completed the blitz, only 1 die, but it was all I had. My luck turned and the ogre went down, the ball bouncing free, but off the pitch. Luckily the throw in pushed it up field, past the half way line, there was no time for the ogres to score.

    Half time 0-0, but only 5 elves left on the pitch, 4 knocked out and 2 wounded. Only one of the unconscious elves woke up at half time.

    The second half came and I knew I had to find a way to use my speed to my advantage. I waited and watched the ogre set up, knowing he had favoured strength on the line of scrimmage and left only snotlings on the wings previously. I also knew that if he put 4 on the scrimmage line again, even if he did cover the wings he only had an ogre for one of them.

    The ogres set up as I'd hoped - 4 on the scrimmage line and one on the right wing. I set up my 6 remaining players. My sole blitzer stood on the left wing ready to blitz. Three linemen stood on the scrimmage line, line as far left as I could manage. One more joined on the left wing close to the blitzer, ready to create the hole. A lineman stood back in the centre ready to gather the ball - if I was lucky.

    The ogre kick only just passed the half way line, stopping right next to my blitzer, but I didn't use him to pick it up, I needed to make my hole first. I blitzed a snotling down and rushed as deep as I could. The second lineman followed. One scrimmage lineman managed to dodge clear of the ogres and join the pack, making it 3 elves clustered tight in the left wing. My remaining lineman rushed for the ball and threw it down to the waiting bunch, the furthest from the ogres catching it.

    The ogres tried hard to catch up, pushing back toward my elves, whilst pounding the remaining linemen on the scrimmage line. My team held out, the ogres able to surround my elves with snotlings, but only able to blitz one of the protecting players and not the ball carrier.

    My next turn saw me take advantage of elf agility and my ball carrier rushed towards the endzone, in a rare spell of luck, he didn't fail his go for it roll either, touchdown to me!

    So now its turn ten and I know its going to be very hard to hold off the ogres when I kick this time. I'm down to 5 on the pitch now and 3 of those are on the scrimmage line. Once more the ogre team left wing is weak and I position myself to try and use that. My kick off punts the ball down the left hand side and not too far from the centre line, a risk, but its all I've got. I figure even if the ogres equalise I might get lucky and pull off another quick touch down, or at least be happy with the draw.

    Instead things really go my way, Sure my line of scrimmage takes a lot of hits, but the ogres don't capitalise on the ball - I figure they think with 6 turns and a 2 to 1 numbers advantage, not to mention the strength that leaves half my team knocked out from the scrimmage, that they think they have the time to pulp my elves first.

    But no, not today. I rush forward and blitz the ball carrying snotling. The ball bounces off the side line and is thrown back in. My one standing scrimmage player on the right hand side dodges his ogre opponant and reaches the ball. What followed was, from my view point, rather amusing.

    I knew I had to hold on and help the turns pass, if I didn't the casualties would mean I'd be a walk over at the next kick off. The game became a merry chase, I had two elves deep in the ogre half trying to keep out of range and snotlings and ogres rushing after me. At one point my ball carrier and his companion are surrounded one square short of the line. A blitz and a block gets two snotlings out of the picture, though not as well as I'd like - side step on a pushback is frustrating in the extreme. But my dodges hold out and my players run to the corner of the pitch, again one square short, I don't want to score until the last moment.

    Finally, turn 16 comes and the rampaging ogres leave me no choice, I score my second touch down with only 3 elves left on the pitch. The final ogre turn comes and 3 more of my players wake up, to leave me 6 on the pitch, I put 3 spread deep and 3 on the line and hope no one else gets broken into bits. My luck holds okay, only stunned players.

    End of the game, and wow, my first win 2-0 to me and the worst I took was 1 blitzer missing the next game - not great, but I think against the ogres its not a bad result.

    Highlights (and lowlights) of the game include.

    - An immense amount of 1s on my dice - 2+ dodges failed repeatedly, 2+ go for it rolls failed repeatedly, including re-rolls.

    - Ogres tossing snotlings at me like a hail storm, no less than 4 attempts to hit my ball carrier in the second half, but none successful.

    - Scoring 2 touchdowns despite having less than half the team on the pitch in both cases.

    With the loss of yesterday's result from the system, there's no skills coming up and I use the cash to buy a 4th re-roll, I've needed them a lot and with one blitzer out next game I'll need them all the more.
     
  11. maxcarrion

    maxcarrion Active Member

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    Congratulations on your win

    It’s hard to tell from the description for sure but it sounds like you’re a little too aggressive with your squishies, I’ve played against Ogres with various elves and sure, turn 1 the LOS elves get mashed, but after that it’s a case of dodging away from Ogres and all he gets is 1 blitz a turn. Most games I’ve played I’ve marked the snotlings heavily, force them to dodge away from me or take the hits, block destroys the little fellows (Tackle is great too but no elf starts with it) so my block players are pretty much tasked to blitzing a snot a turn and I find even squishies can build up a number advantage against the Ogres and there’s some great spp to have hurting the snots :p
     
  12. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    I think a large part of it last night was my apparant total inability to dodge from anything, even my 2+ rolls were coming up 1s more often than not, which was very frustrating and did a lot to end my turns before I could free them all up.

    I do suspect I need to take more care to use tacklezones instead of marking against these higher strength players, but I just found I kept getting surrounded. If I didn't move back too far - which I didn't because I was trying to hold the cage back - my players tended to find themselves mobbed, and with each casualty I took their advantage grew, so losing out on the early turns due to some appalling dice rolls probably hurt my game play more than it should because they closed in on me easily from the start.
     
  13. maxcarrion

    maxcarrion Active Member

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    Yeah well if the dice go against nothing else matters :p
     
  14. Coach

    Coach Administrator Head Coach

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    It should be quite hard for a team that is caging up to surround a defence until they get a heavy numerical advantage.

    Perhaps you need to spread your team out more horizontally across the pitch, without actually seeing what you are doing it is hard to give any more specific advice. Try taking some screen shoots of the before and after of some of your turns and posting them?
     
  15. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Good idea, I'll try screenshots going forward if I can. I know from the start of this match that having the initial kick off take out two players, followed by my first turn being ended by my blitzer failing his go-for-it roll and re roll left me badly positioned early on, but it does seem to be an area I need to work on more.

    I think perhaps I need to give a little more ground for the sake of keeping my players on the pitch, rather than keeping so tight against the cage.
     
  16. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Game four in my run on the Auld World league. The matchmaking seemed to be a little desperate tonight, as my team value of 1010 (950 plus mercenary lineman 60k due to blitzer missing game) was faced off against a 1300 value dwarf team.

    I used the inducements to get 2 extra re-rolls and 1 lot of bloodwieser babes - something that would help significantly with keeping players on the pitch as it turned out.

    Once more I kicked off and the dwarf line tried hard to pummel me. I had been hoping the lower strength of the dwarves would improve my lot, but I had underestimated just how much guard 300 tv of skills can contain, and this and a dence scrimmage line gave them the advantage on every block.

    I also made one fundamental mistake in my set up - I didn't factor in the trollslayer, the first frenzy player I've come across. My flanking lineman was off the pitch with a fractured leg almost immediately due to the crowd surfing.

    My defence tonight was poor, I made some mistakes that cost me a couple of turnovers early on and the dwarves capitalised on it to get into contact with my defending elves, and the amount of tackle on the stunty team impacted my dodges more than I would have liked also.

    All in all the mistakes lead to an easy touchdown for the dwarves in turn 4 - 0-1, not a great start, I also had 2 wounded players off, though the knock outs were fewer than my last game and they woke up, for the most part.

    The kick off on turn 5 saw me set up angled left, away from the trollslayer, and my blitzer on the end ready to punch through and linemen waiting to push deep - I was really hoping the shorter movement of the dwarves would help me out. The kick went deep but a waiting lineman was close. The blitzer successfully battered down the dwarf flank and a lineman ran deep. My lineman from the back scooped up the ball and rushed over to hand it off to the thrower, who ran forward to make a successful short pass to the lineman in the dwarf backfield. I pushed as many lineman through to join them as I could until my dodges from the scrimmage line failed. I just had to hope I could hold off the dwarves and score - preferably not too quickly otherwise I'd have to face another punishing kick off scrimmage line.

    My players who had pushed forward tied up the closest dwarves and the ball carrier survived the turn with most dwarves still concentrating on the centre line and trying to close on the rest of my team. I wasn't sure if he was deliberately ignoring the ball or not, but the end result was that I held onto the ball until turn 8, pushing the ball carrier right into the corner as far as possible from the dwarves until scoring on turn 8.

    Half time, 1-1 and after knocked out players waking up, I was still only down to 9 players. I was going to be receiving. I just had to hope he set the line up as far forward as he had in the first half, in order to try and break the line once more.

    This time the kick off gave the dwarves a snap play and they did their best to hit my line of scrimmage and right flank. Stupidly I'd once more forgotten the threat of the trollslayer and his frenzy, and my second lineman of the night was crowd surfed into an injury, also missing the next game.

    The kick itself though, went off pitch and I was able to hand it to a lineman near the front straight away. My blitzer hit the flanking dwarf again, I was surprised it worked, even more surprised that he didn't set up any deeper defences, this time not even a runner in the rear since he hadn't been receiving. My blitzer knocked down the dwarf and he was carted from the pitch unconscious. My ball carrier followed before handing off to the blitzer who had gone a square deeper. Again I was hoping to keep them on their feet long enough to score.

    The dwarves chased and blitzed, but rolled a double pushback, they re-rolled but another double pushback came up, my ball carrier thanked the gods and went yet closer to the endzone from all the shoving. This time around though, I wasn't going to be able to dictate the turn I scored on, the rest of the dwarf team came flooding back and so I rushed in the ball to score on turn 10.

    2-1 to me but a long time left to go and the trollslayer's blitz left me with 3 injured now, so I was going to be weak when it came to keeping them from marching the cage down to score.

    The next kick off saw me set up only 8 players, but I placed 5 of them deeper, spread across the pitch. The kick off erupted in fan disruption, pushing the game one turn along - excellent news from my point of view, but the ball scattering off the pitch and then being placed in a runner dead centre behind the scrimmage line was not so good, I knew there was going to be little I could do to pluck the ball clear if the cage was any good.

    The dwarves once more hammered my scrimmage line, yet another badly hurt lineman added to my woes, but no long term impact. The cage was pretty good and combined with some very poor luck with dodging (again failing the 2+ rolls) meant my players struggled to get at the ball carrier.

    I managed to blitz the carrier twice though, but the amount of guard on the team made them both 1 die blocks. I knocked the ball free once but it wasn't enough to stop the dwarves scoring again on turn 14.

    2-2 and yet another kick off, this time me receiving again. I was down to 6 players now though and I set up yet again to try and punch a hole in a dwarf line that I now knew was entirely too close to the halfway line. I only had 2 turns to do it in though, but I had a couple of re-rolls in hand and I was going to try.

    The kick off was fairly uneventful, less injured elves was a good part though, and I managed to once again push the blitzer through and get the ball to him - a lineman acting as thrower by now. The follow up from the dwarves saw 3 players converge on the 2 that had broken through. One prevented any assists, the other ensuring a 2 die block for the final one, a blitzer. The dice came up double skulls and by now the dwarves had no re-rolls remaining.

    Final turn, I was 4 squares from home but there was a dwarf blocker next to me. I looked around but none of my standing players were close enough to blitz and free the ball carrier from the need to dodge and my closer players were prone. I rolled for the dodge - I only needed a 2+.

    It failed.

    So did the re-roll. Turnover. The dwarves snatched the ball but they were never going to cover the entire length of the pitch in a turn, so they used it to toss the ball and get the runner a skill point.

    End of the game and a 2-2 draw. 2 of my linemen are missing the next game, but since they're no better than the journeymen (apart from loner) its not really going to hurt me too much.

    Now, I might be a little biased due to the impact its had, but this is 3 games now out of 4 played where all I've needed is a 2+ to score and both roll and re-roll have come up failures and its really bugging me.

    I struck lucky with 70k of winnings and I used it to buy a catcher - the first on my team and a valuable player I hope. My blitzer became only my second player to skill up, and I went with dodge (having recently read coach's article on marking blitzers).

    My track record is now 1-2-1 and I'm still learning, still making a lot of silly mistakes.

    1. Forgetting the risk of the frenzy crowd surf not once but twice.
    2. One die blocking too often.
    3. Not paying enough attention to the location of players with guard.

    But I am pleased with one or two areas - mostly knowing that a swift move on the flank can score relatively easily for the elves, even when outnumbered - and I hope a catcher will add yet more to that. I'm pleased that I made less errors in closing on the dwarves and exposing myself to blocks, but disappointed that it made little difference due to the amount of time I failed easy dodges.
     
  17. Clercon

    Clercon New Member

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    Really fun reports to follow, I'm thinking of setting up an Elf team myself so I hopefully learn something on the way here.

    When it comes to dicerolls I really understand how you feel. The other night I played an Orc team with my skaven. Two turns in a row i failed to pick up the ball with my gutterrunner! Both times I also failed the reroll :-( After that my opponent of course managed to pick it up with an orc on his first try :)
     
  18. Etheric

    Etheric Well-Known Member

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    Keep the reports coming they are a nice read.

    I agree it does get fustrating when you get nuffled, but you seem to be doing pretty well despite that.

    My first closed league game as wood elves, I injured to of my opponents on the line of scrummage, then he failed to break armour the whole game more or less, I had a 3-0 win.

    Then a following open league game as khemri I had hte same problem in reverse, playing woodelfs, 1000 TV, 1 tree, 2 wardancers 1 RR and I could not break armour at all. Got a total of 2 KOs the whole game, and lost 1-0. Of course he BI one and killed another of my skellis (failed both regen rolls), I even managed to get 2+1 on a foul on one of the WD (wiht 4 assists). One of the KOs was on his tree on turn 8, and he was back after HT.

    There is something of a cascade effect though, as you lose players he gets more blocks (getting 2D is easier etc) and you lose more again.

    I do wonder which random number generator they use, as there are some bad ones out there, wiht too much corrolation between the numbers. In the end though it should all balance out. It does get hard to remember that at times :D.
     
  19. Coach

    Coach Administrator Head Coach

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    Sounds like you are improving though don't get hung up on the 1 reroll 1 occurrences. They happen once every 36 attempts (on average), perhaps it might be worth counting how many 2+ rolls you do pass in a match to get some perspective?

    If you get hung up on those events you may be tempted to just blame them and not assess your turns properly to see if there was a way you could have avoided even attempting that dice roll. You can't fail what you don't roll!

    Good luck in the next match!
     
  20. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Well, I took the time for another match tonight (big surprise) and the matchmaker picked me up with a roughly level Vampire team.

    My roster for the game:

    1 x Blitzer - level 1 std
    1 x Blitzer - level 2 (dodge)
    1 x Thrower - level 2 (accurate)
    1 x Catcher - level 1 (new acquisition last game)
    6 x Linemen - level 1 (6 of 8 available, 2 suffering MNG injuries last time)
    4 x RR

    A journeyman lineman joined the team to bring me up to 11.

    The vampire team had 5 Vampires and 9 thralls.

    With 5 Vampires on the team I was interested to see how it would go, I was more than a little nervous knowing they roughly matched my speed, as well as matching my agility and being strength 4.

    The Vampires elected to kick off and in response the fans stunned a thrall on the scrimmage line and my right flank blitzer with rocks. The kick was short and easily gathered. Once more I blitzed down the flank, pushing a blitzer and two linemen down into the vampire half. The ball carrier handed off to the thrower who carefully tossed it down to the waiting blitzer. The rest of my team concentrated on marking as many of those vampires and thralls closest to the ball, to try and reduce the risk of a blitz.

    I held out for a turn rather well and turn 2 saw an easy touchdown, and my confidence raised significantly.

    The next kick off showed me it was somewhat misplaced, a strong vampire blitz (again that strength 4!) sent one lineman off badly hurt and vampires in the middle of my flank. The rear vampires scooped up the ball, rushing forward and handing it off to the next, before it was thrown down to the waiting receiver in my half. What followed was a little more of a scuffle than the vampires had offered me, but effectively the same result.

    1-1 and only 5 turns in. So far my players were holding up quite well, one badly hurt and one knocked out, I was able to set up with 9 against the vampire 11.

    This time I knew I would need most of those 9 if I was going to break a hole in the vampire line to repeat my touchdown. I set up heavily on the left side - both blitzers on the flank, the line of scrimmage tight on the left. A lineman and the thrower hung back deeper ready to gather the ball, with one lineman on the scrimmage line to the right as cover.

    The kick went deep and my lineman was able to gather it successfully and on it went to the thrower with a hand off.

    My blitz was effective again, but the field was tighter now, some of the vampires had set up a little deeper as a counter to my first touchdown. The wedge that formed caught the ball, but they were under threat.

    This time the Vampires began to challenge for the ball, but by this stage of the game the weight of 5 vampires on the pitch was also beginning to have an impact as failed bloodlust rolls led to thralls coming off the pitch badly hurt.

    In either case, after some dodging and lucky blocks, I was able to score once again, but it was still only turn 6. The only major downside was my thrower rolling up a serious injury. Trying to avoid the -1 to armour value, I used my apothecary and it came up as badly hurt, returning him to the reserves box instead of out.

    2-1 to me. Back up to 10 on the pitch now as my knocked out lineman woke up.

    The kick off was not so pleasant this time, and I was going to rue using up my apothecary, though to be fair, it was a positional player, so I think I would still do the same.

    The scrimmage line blocks left one lineman dead, as did the initial blitz, and there was nothing I could do. The vampire coach was very apologetic, but after advice here, I'm rather pragmatic - the linemen are there to allow the throwers and catchers to do their jobs and neither had gained a level. I was a little disappointed to lose ones with 5 and 3 star player points, since none of them have leveled up yet, those would have been close, but ultimately replaceable.

    My defence held up reasonably well and a fumbled pass from the vampires prevented a touchdown.

    Halftime 2-1 to me, 1 badly hurt and 2 dead, so I only lined up with 8. This time though the vampires are down to 10 purely due to the number of thralls off hurt due to bloodlust failures.

    The second half was, comparatively, more gentle. The kick went well, but the vampires were setting up as well as before and gathered the ball before pushing forward with the scrimmage line. What followed was similar to the first half, but my defence went better, whilst the vampires fell on tougher luck. I was able to blitz the ball carrier, but unable to make much more of it, and eventually the strength of the vampires and comparative numbers allowed them to re-cage the ball before throwing it to a vampire that rushed the end zone.

    2-2 now, and the vampires are starting to run out of players too now, 5 thralls are off badly hurt, 4 of them due to bloodlust. I was still on 8, which was a turn up, if I'm honest.

    My set up this time was similar, but the vampires were better spread and deeper, so I knew a sideline rush was unlikely, but I still set up as though I would try it. The kick off resulted in the ball bouncing off the pitch and I handed it to a lineman on the left side. My line of scrimmage was on the left again and I used those lineman and my blitzers to forge a path closer to the centre than before, the ball carrier and thrower following, whilst my catcher broke deeper to open up my options.

    The vampire defence on the next turn didn't break my small cage, but it did do some damage to it, and after that I was forced closer to the sidelines in an attempt to get clear, three elves exposed further from the bulk of my team than I would have liked. A vampire blitz took the ball carrier down and the ball bounced along the side line behind my remaining elves, but stayed on the ground. My next turn saw a failed pick up and suddenly it was looking very tight indeed.

    My elves kept the vampires off the ball for another turn before they claimed it. A dodge away failed though and it bounced off closer to the middle of the pitch. A lot of scuffling and blitzing happened, but ultimately the ball would stay deep in the vampire half. On turn 15 my blitzer was free enough to blitz down the vampire guarding the ball before gathering it. He rushed forward, my original intention to throw it safely to the waiting catcher, but he was a long distance off, so I settled for a go-for-it roll for the blitzer himself to score. 3-2 to me.

    The final kick off was 8 on 8 as by now the vampires had 6 badly hurt thralls, 5 of those bloodlust victims. My kick went right to the end zone, there was nothing the vampires could do, and their coach contented himself with a throw and some blocks on the scrimmage line, which I survived. My final turn I knew I could not score again and did not want to risk blocking, so I ended the game without serious action.

    Final score 3-2 to me - my second win, but a costly one - 2 dead linemen to show for it. My winnings allowed me to buy a second catcher, bringing my team back up to 11.

    One lineman leveled up and I took wrestle, hoping to use it more to my advantage than block.

    This game was a pretty good experience, I threw more, I lost out on blocks far less, despite the vampires strength, and I pushed less go-for-it rolls. As a result of these my re-rolls lasted longer and had a very noticable impact when compared to the vampire teams 2 re-rolls.

    The vampire agility did catch me out a little, so I know that I need to work on developing skills that will help me play against a throwing game, as I felt vulnerable. I also didn't react quick enough to pull my line back field when they broke through, leaving most too far away to help.

    I was impressed with the vampires. I can see the drawback of bloodlust and the thralls were very much sidelined into assists and providing handy snacks but 5 Vampires makes for an agile throwing team though.


    My record now 2-2-1. Team value 1200 (mostly due to carrying 2 catchers now), still only 11 players and only 3 of them having gained skills.