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Halflings

Discussion in 'Team Blogs' started by Barninho, Nov 13, 2010.

  1. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    Hi everyone.

    In two weeks I'm going into my first online league the UKBBL. I've only been playing for about three or four months and I don't have a vast amount of online experience, so the goal is simply to have fun and with that in mind I picked Halflings.

    They've since become my favorite team in Bloodbowl. You can have awful games when it all goes wrong but still enjoy them. Chucking a 'fling into a cage or taking out a Mummy with a Treeman makes all the defeats worthwhile.

    I found it tricky to get information on the Halflings compared to other races, and a lot of what I did find seemed to be out of date. To anyone looking for info like I was I'd recommend the three-die block podcast interview with Tom Anders.

    So anyway I go away for a fortnight on Tuesday which means no BB and get back on the first day of the season. I was always going to start a blog for the team as a cautionary tale for rookie coaches who choose the little guys, but I did some thinking about the background of the team and had some ideas that should keep me entertained even if I have a 100% loss record. They are detailed below if anyone wants to bother reading them.

    My rule for the season ahead :- Anything good my team does, for example taking out a ball carrier with a thrown Halfling or scoring a touchdown counts as a win.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2010
  2. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    The Highland ‘Flings

    Back in the days before Nuffle, when war was the most popular sport, the Halflings of the Highlands managed to remain on their windswept plains without being bothered for two reasons. The Highlands contained little of tactical importance, and the terrible weather would make a Yheti long for home…

    Post-war the ‘flings became one of the poorer communities in the known world. The terrain wasn’t suitable for any profession other than farming goats. The weather was horrible enough to discourage outside investment. Despite a healthy interest in Bloodbowl as a spectator sport through the media of cabalvision the Highlanders lacked the financial infrastructure to fund a franchise of their very own.

    Today, thanks to one individual, the ridiculously wealthy Nipsy Gwint, that has all changed. Nipsy made his fortune by recognising that the local area was so horrible it could represent an excellent deterrent to troubled youths, and he funded a facility designed to hold 300 youths in dire need of rehabilitation.

    The venture was an unqualified success as Halflings from all over the Old World sent their most disturbed and antisocial offspring to “Nipsy Gwint’s School For The Rehabilitation Of Troubled Souls’,” despite the fact that their record on the rehabilitation side of things was pretty dismal. Most Halflings like a peaceful, settled routine, and for the most part were relieved just to see the back of their black sheep.

    As the money swelled in and the waiting list grew, Nipsy became a busy boy, and also a very rich one. He was also a rabid Bloodbowl fan, and one day in a flash of inspiration he found a way to combine the two things that he loved the most.

    He announced to the local community that he was going to fund the establishment of the Highland Flings, the newest team to enter the professional ranks. The stadium, to be named Glesgie would be constructed within a year on an area adjoining his facility, and the players would be conscripted primarily from the facility itself. He also intended to splash out on two Tree-men to add much needed strength to the line-up.

    You might think that folks would be less reluctant to send their relatives to the school given the extraordinarily high mortality rate of Halfling players, but in actual fact most Halflings were quite excited at the thought of the more useless members of their families getting a chance to go out in glory.

    For Nipsy himself the Highland Flings represented the goose that laid the golden eggs. He sold his inmates to himself at a discount, which meant with every defeat the club saved money and Nipsy made money. The more bloody the massacre, the more Nipsy could take to the bank.

    People Of Importance-

    Nipsy Gwint - The clubs owner who also acts as the warden of the ‘Nipsy Gwint School For The Rehabilitation Of Troubled Souls’. The only Blood Bowl owner who is financially much better off when his team loses, as long as you discount all of the ones willing to take bribes.

    Solly Stromso - Gwint’s financial partner and the man who organises disposal of the Halfling corpses. Worryingly he also owns a tinned meat factory.

    Hannery Ellery - Originally signed on to coach the ‘Flings but has since been replaced and left under something of a cloud. Ellery was a popular appointment, the successful coach of local amateur side Brittle & Bold, who once managed to beat a touring Norse side, the Low-Key Loki’s, 3-0. However the fact that Ellery had coached teams that won the occasional game counted against him, and he was replaced by Gwint with somebody who could be relied upon to lose consistently and place players at risk.

    Pigbog Badoodie - To outsiders unfamiliar with the inner-workings of the club the arrival of Pigbog Badoodie, the only Troll to ever coach in the professional ranks, was seen as an incredible appointment. Pigbog had broken records in the professional game. He held the record for most consecutive minutes spent staring into space and the most balls eaten in a single season. In addition to this most of the playing staff were liable to hid whenever he entered a room until they saw his eyes go glassy.

    Bigtwig McCaber & The False Duke - Two tree-men with longstanding ties to the Highland Halflings. Every year they are good enough to participate in the flagship event at the Highland games, ‘being tossed by the caber’, in which Halflings compete to see how far they can be thrown by the pair. On the face of it, both look like being a major asset to the ‘flings. Bigtwig tends to be the talkative one while the ash-coloured False Duke is known to be a gentle but more secretive individual. They were introduced to a great reception at a three-hour press conference. By the end of the conference Bigtwig still hadn’t finished introducing himself, which led to a mass outbreak of wandering away while yawning among the assembled fans and journalists.

    Yorgen Torgenshmorgen - Yorgen Torgenshmorgen is an unrivalled local chef who sometimes accompanies the team to matches. His skill with aromatic spices is unrivalled, and it is said his food smells infinitely better than it tastes. Being a proud Highlander, everything Yorgen makes is fried in batter.

    Deeproot Strongbranch - If rumours are to be believed, the legendary Treeman has already agreed a deal to line up for the little ones in the first game of the season. Local media have asked the superstar for a response to these rumours and are by all accounts still waiting for him to finish it.
     
  3. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    The Plan

    STARTING ROSTER

    Torn between two possible starting lineups
    2 x Treeman 240k
    10 x Halflings 300k
    1 x Rerolls 60k
    400k to save towards inducements
    Deeproot Strongbranch 300k
    Halfling Master Chef 100k

    Or

    2 x Treeman 240k
    12 x Halflings 360k
    2 x Rerolls 120k
    Halfling Master Chef 1ook
    Wizard 150k

    The first one would be the Tom Anders starting lineup that would allow me to call up both Deeproot and the Halfing Master Chef assuming my opening day opponent has used all of his TV. This is probably the 'recommended' line-up from what I can gauge.

    I would definitely pick this roster if I could guarantee my opponents TV was going to be 1000m but if its 10k lower that messes my plans up considerably. The Chef or Deeproot has to go and without Deeproot I don't think I can get away with only ten halflings, and the loss of Master Chef means I'm stuck on one re-roll. Having said that one of the most effective inducement combo's for me so far has been a wizard and master chef combined, which with a bit of luck can kick-start a horrible game for the opposition.

    I'm therefore tempted to add more halflings and a reroll and go with less inducements at the moment. I could add a reroll and two more halflings and still be confident of getting the wizard and master chef, and this might make all the difference in the second half if the block dice and injury rolls don't go for me.

    But Deeproot makes a massive difference. A ST 7 Tree with Block who doesn't take root and there's a strong argument he's more important than a master chef, even with the deeper bench and the extra Reroll.

    DEVELOPMENT PLANS

    The Treemen are going to be slow to skill up but I'm convinced they're the most important people on the team to get right.

    At the moment I'm thinking of Guard, Multiple Block and Grab as normal skill rolls, and Break Tackle most likely if I got to a fourth choice. With assists from the halflings I can see this being devastating.

    Doubles I can't see past Block or then Sure Feet. I'd take the ST or MV stat increase too if it became available, with standing up again after being knocked down tricky at times.

    The Halflings are like as not going to be dead before skilling up too far, I have a criminal mortality rate so far. I'm not planning on anything that original here. I'll be looking for some Diving Tackle/Sidestep players and some Sure Feet/Catch/Diving Catch players. The priority on a double surely has to be Kick. Obviously Block. Dirty Player could go a long way. I definitely want at least a couple of dedicated foulers. Hail Mary Pass could be fun too.

    I am keeping my fingers crossed for Strength, Agility or Movement stat increases too.
     
  4. happygrue

    happygrue New Member

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    I don't have much experience with 'flings, but your nice posts have made me want to play some soon! Good luck with the team. :)
     
  5. Netsmurf

    Netsmurf Well-Known Member

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    Remember to tjeck if the league allows you to start with that low a TV.
     
  6. coachman

    coachman Well-Known Member

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    Im looking forward to reading this. I've never used flings but good luck... you'll need it.
     
  7. Coach

    Coach Administrator Head Coach

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    Seems bizarre that a league would rule that, there is nothing in the rulebook to say you can't, just that you must start with at least 11 players.

    I'm glad you are aware of the possibility of other teams starting with less than a full TV 1000 roster. This can also happen if an opponent has an expensive player missing a game and is replaced by a Journeyman. This can then leave your low TV Inducement reliant Halfling side in a bit of trouble, at least that is my experience when I tried that route. In an already well developed league though it can work wonders, especially as you don't have to start out quite so low and can start with some reserves.

    It will be interesting to follow your thoughts on whichever method you do go with.
     
  8. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    @ Netsmurf - An excellent point there for anyone entering Halflings in a competition, but yes I have checked and there is no problem at all with it.

    @ Coachman - I definitely do need luck, but so far in practice games on line I've had plenty of it. Obviously I don't have a winning record but I've managed to pull a couple of good wins and a fair few draws out of the bag, and whenever there's a halfling massacre you can usually afford to replace everyone you lost. Pretty much everything you do is high risk, even a dodge out can leave you a player down with startling regularity, but when it pays off... So sweet.

    @ Coach - I think Orca Cola might be going with a minimum TV of 950, although from what I understand it's under debate. I'm with you though, inducements are part of the game...

    With me only having a day left to practice before I fly off I would say that at the moment it's almost 100% certain I'll go with the 720 TV roster. Tried it out last night again. As you say, the TV 600 approach can work really well but for me only someone who is very experienced with halflings should consider it. I sometimes struggle to keep them safe and have sustained nine casualties in a game before now.

    Having said that, when it works...
     
  9. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    PRE SEASON HIGHLIGHTS AND LOWLIGHTS

    Well the 'flings have been touring the Old World and results have been mixed but I can quite honestly say I've never had more fun with the game. The majority of my results have been draws, I've been absolutely massacred two or three times, and I've also had my best online win ever, with any team.

    Normally I go online and appeal for a challenge game as matchmaking isn't going to help me with lineups for the new season and normally one of two things happen. Either someone feels sorry for me and helps me out or someone sees a low TV halfling team and gets blinded from the prospect of all them casualty SPPs. The people from the latter category are the ones who I tend to do best against. The halflings true secret weapon isn't inducements, it is being underestimated by bashy teams who aren't fully developed.

    The worst game was undoubtedly a 3-1 defeat against a Norse team called Low Key Loki's. The Block skill paid off for them and in the second half I started with five flings and two trees and I was 1-0 down. Just a question of them walking the ball down to the end-zone after tying up my trees, but I pulled one back after they scored their second when the ball broke kindly and I managed to throw the ball carrier just far enough so he could walk it in the turn after.

    However my best result came in the rematch. The Norse had skilled up both their Werewolves with Block and their Yheti had a strength boost after the first game, but this had bloated their TV so I could afford a Master Chef and a Wizard. I also took more guaranteed Rerolls as the Master Chef hadn't paid off in the previous match. Still, this came at the expense of Deeproot so I wasn't exactly feeling like the favorite.

    They received, caged well, and drove down the right, and I hit them with the Wizard nice and early allowing me to pick up the ball and run off. His werewolf was in range, but stunty saved me, and I was able to dodge off and tie up most of his men. He had one lineman in go for it range but failed the go for it, and I managed to delay for another turn before walking it in.
    The Norse then started another drive which I was unable to stop progressing smoothly. He was caged up on turn 8 three squares away from the try line and then made the mistake that changed the game. He tried to block a halfling with his wolf and rolled double skulls. Ouch!
    Following that in the second half I received, failed the pick up close to the line of scrimmage and was swarmed. Managed the much harder pickup with tackle zones on the ball and ran to my tree who threw him close enough to the end zone to score next turn. In this turn my other tree was also killed in a both down result that saw his Yheti removed from the pitch badly hurt.
    However my trees had also done enough damage to the Norse to give me a numbers advantage (the only time I've EVER had a numbers advantage with 'flings) and when he failed a pickup I was able to swarm him with five flings. In desperation, he tried a throw and I was able to capitalise. 3-0, my record online win.

    Also had a great record against Khemri who I have played about four times and am still unbeaten. I would also have a win against them if the guy I was playing against hadn't disconnected when I took out three tomb guardians with my trees and broke to score... Also had possibly my favourite moment against them when I hit their ball carrier with a thrown halfling.

    Also had a narrow loss to a Nurgle team but one moment made me very happy. With three halflings tied up by the Beast I freed them up by throwing another halfling that KO'd the Beast (and killed the halfling, but hey, it's a halfling).

    Last night I played goblins in a 2-2 draw and I can't say I was happy with the way I played. The goblins dominated but I equalised twice and what made it special was I equalised with my first ever one-turn touchdown, and then equalised again with my second ever one-turn touchdowns. The first one was especially sweet because it got his chainsaw and bomber sent off without them managing to do a thing. It was one of those games where you just apologise to the opponent.

    The game I'm proudest of however was just a 1-1 draw against Dark Elves. They had 1760 TV and I had 720 TV. Enter Morg, Deeproot, a Master Chef and a Wizard. They had two Tackle players as well, which makes halflings die a lot. They dominated the first half, I was getting tonked everywhere, but in the second half they kicked it out and I was able to score by giving the ball to Morg, which is a bit of a copout but sod it, I got a draw against a team who had more than double my TV.

    So that's it, I'd better be ready. Two weeks relaxing with no BB and then straight in when I get back, which means I will most likely be suffering from jetlag in my first game. Should be fun.
     
  10. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    Just had two games against Netsmurf's Necros which I lost 2-0 and 3-0 despite him having the worst luck I've seen in a long time. He only gave me a couple of very long shots at scoring. Thought I might have scored the first TD in game 1 after getting my halflings close to the line with the ball but he quickly took control and bossed the game. The most I could do was try and make it tricky for him, and I like to think I did at some stages. His tactics were spot on and he played superbly, so that the luck hardly became a factor even though I nicked most of his rerolls.
     
  11. Gallows Bait

    Gallows Bait Super Moderator Moderator

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    Really enjoying this team log and seeing the enjoyment your getting from playing a team for fun and learning rather than just trying to win - even if you do also seem to have an impressive record.
     
  12. Netsmurf

    Netsmurf Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the kind words, the best chef I have ever played against; he took 5 of 6 in match one and 4 / 6 in match two. Lucky for me the flings are having trouble when landing.
     
  13. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    My starting roster for the new season...

    1. Bigtwig Barkley Treeman 120k
    2. The False Duke Treeman 120k
    3. Six Millersmith Halfling 30k
    4. Gus Underwood Halfling 30k
    5. Slugger O' Toole Halfling 30k
    6. Willowbob Buckfast Halfling 30k
    7. Jambo Spangler Halfling 30k
    8. Kipper Blix Halfling 30k
    9. Doc Whoppertop Halfling 30k
    10. Bunsen Thunderguff Halfling 30k
    11. Gulchie McGooge Halfling 30k
    12. Bovril Bogart Halfling 30k
    13. Hannibal Black Halfling 30k
    14. Oddsock Desato Halfling 30k
    2 Re-Rolls 120k
    Total 720k

    Inducements will depend on opponents inducements and such.

    DEVELOPMENT PLAN

    Treemen N Guard, Multi Block, Grab/Break Tackle
    D Block, Sure Feet
    SI ST or MV
    Halflings N Sure Feet, Catch, Diving Catch
    (Attackers) D (Kick on first), Wrestle
    SI Any, but AG is the dream. MV over AV.
    Halflings N Diving Tackle, Sidestep
    (Defence) D (Kick on first) Block, Hail Mary Pass
    SI Any, but ST would be nice. MV over AV.
    Halflings N Sneaky Git
    D Dirty Player
    SI Any. MV over AV.

    Also going to assess halflings at lvl 3 for retirement unless I have a special player developing...
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  14. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    I'll be playing in the Gyphon's Wood East division and the racial make-up of the division is like this...

    D.Elves
    Amazon
    Chaos
    P.Elves
    Norse
    Halflings
    Undead
    Orc
    Skaven
    Undead

    I would say I'm very much the underdog here without knowing anything about the other coaches, but it's a really nice mix of races so it should be a really fun season. Quite relieved there are no dwarf teams to have to deal with...

    As I said earlier my target is one win for the season and lots of mayhem.
     
  15. chef

    chef New Member

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    I would suggest a change of development on your treemen on normal rolls. With move 2, it's going to be hard to set up many multiple blocks that are in your favor. Guard is also a difficult skill to have where you need it with only move 2. But I'd still take it since its the only place you can get it. If you do manage to get guard on both, I'd change up your kicking formation some. If you put them in the standard 3 guys together in the middle with treemen on either side of a halfling, you essentially have a S4 fling. Might help keep him from dying. Only problem with that is that it makes the guys in the back easier to blitz. So it depends on which fling you are wiling to sacrifice. Which is why i prefer the three tree LOS. Anywho, I'd probably take break tackle before guard or multiple block. That way you can at least have a shot of getting those two skills where you need them, instead of being stuck against a lineman having to block him instead. I'd also recommend grab so you can hold onto the guys you are trying to punish instead of pushing them away on accident.

    Tons of luck, good sir. Hope you do well :)
     
  16. Barninho

    Barninho Well-Known Member

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    Hi Chef.

    In Florida at the moment so hardly had time to check forum and such. Thanks for the feedback.

    After having a chance to think, I'm pretty convinced that Break tackle is the way to go. Having said that I do think Multiple Block could still be handy as the next skill, and it's something I'm really keen to try.

    My thinking is that its been toughest when opponents don't pussy out and target my trees. Now with break tackle it will take a couple to keep them away from the action (take root permitting) and I could see Multi Block being fun in that situation. Maybe nor consistently useful, but fun.

    But thanks and I've adjusted. I'm thinking Break Tackle, Grab, Multi Block. Having said that there's no guarantee I'll get to three skills.