Blood Bowl Team Rerolls

Rerolls are one of the few things that are common to just about every Blood Bowl team. The ability to roll a failed attempt for a second time can be absolutely crucial to your success. As such knowing the best times to use them, when to not use them, what they allow you to attempt and how many to have, are all things worth knowing.

Reroll Preservation:

As rerolls usually get used most the time on rolls that will cause a turnover (makes sense right) it obviously comes in handy to have one available when you are going to do something that could leave you in a bad spot if it does fail. Of course having a reroll to hand when you do this doesn’t mean that it won’t fail! So the first thing on your mind when looking to use a reroll should be if you can get away without using it up.

For example, if the ball landed deep in your half from the kick off, you are against a slow team that can’t get there and you failed to pick the ball up. This is a situation that comes up a lot, especially for AG3 teams who don’t have a Sure Hands player yet. I hate using a reroll on the first turn, and if the opposing team is in no position to threaten the ball, you can get away with just trying to pick the ball up next turn. Or perhaps you did a one dice block with somebody who was marked up and both players are away from the action. You roll a skull and rather than spending a reroll on it, you just let your player get thumped. Not using rerolls in these situations can be a life saver later on in the half when you really could have done with one.

The other related side of reroll preservation is to not do things that may end up costing you a reroll to avoid a turnover. The aforementioned one dice block, if your player doesn’t have block he will cause a turnover a third of the time. This is a great way to burn through your rerolls quickly and is a mistake often made by players new to the game. Other common causes are taking needlessly risky dodges and go for its. Also it is good practice to not use a reroll on push back results on blocks, on occasion it may be beneficial to do so (especially if you have a lot of rerolls). A push result won’t cause you a turnover but if you reroll it, there is always that risk that you not only wasted a reroll on something that was safe, but you caused a turnover and your player is also now at least prone, if not dead! The opposition can just run off now without needing to dodge or block your player away and some teams may take the opportunity to foul the prone guy as well.

9 thoughts on “Rerolls”

  1. Good article,

    I always try to follow the less “risky first” principle when possible, but more often than not you run into dilemmas… example: I just played a game yesterday where everything was according to plan. I moved my unmarked players first to their desired spots etc and then I had the following choice:

    A- Move a dodge skilled catcher away to free him of tackle zones (2+ plus dodge skill, low risk in principle), into a more strategic position unmarked etc, or

    B- Leap with a WD, who is stuck on the sideline, marked by 3 opponents and about to be pushed into the crowd next turn, so to get away.

    It would seem reasonable to perform the dodge first as is a very low risk, wouldnt it?… only two 1’s can get you down, and save the leap for the end with the re roll handy for the leap.

    Well, I did exactly that, my dodger got two 1’s, turnover. Next turn my WD was gently pushed into the crowd and got a fractured skull.

    Point is, judge needs to be exercised applying the low risk first principle… and we shuld be factoiring into they decission not only the simnple order of risk for actions but the consequences of failing those actions aswell.

  2. Not to mention you could have just blocked with your WD regardless of the dice. Worse comes to worse he gets defender down (which means he can’t get pushed out next turn) if he manages a push ect you’ll be able to move him away from the edge for another turn 😛 Just another thing you have to think about when making these hard choices.

  3. Of course you do have to consider in that circumstance that your Wardancer going attacker down with three players already around him. Be rude not to foul him in your upcoming turn!

  4. Still, fouling has a chance of failing and a 30% chance of getting the culprit ejected!
    On the subject of rerolls, another important thing briefly mentioned in the text is to avoid “all or nothing” rolls as much as possible. For instance, move a supporting player or two up before attempting to pick the ball up if a failed roll is likely to cause a touchdown against you. More examples could be: avoid throwing passes while standing by the sidelines to reduce the impact of a fumble, move supporting players towards the enemy end-zone before attempting to GFI for a touch down, use supporting players to cover the thrower (and catcher) if possible, etc. Not only does this reduce the impact of a failed roll (and hence reduces the need to use a reroll), it also gives you a remote opportunity to recover by, e.g., catching a scattering pass with a supporting player instead!

  5. Worth noting too that before you second guess yourself, you would have failed the leap with those rolls.

    Which would have left you with wardancer on the ground (at best, possibly injured) and your catcher waiting to be hit.

    The only ‘good’ thing about getting pushed into a crowd is at least they cant get a modifier on the injury roll, with three guys next to him and a dirty player….that can get bad for him quickly.

    One other thing to note:

    For those who have not played elves much and are starting, you will end on double ones a LOT.
    Moreso than with any other team.

    This is not because you are ‘naturally unlucky’ with elves.

    It is because you, like almost every player, will push your luck when using them much more than you will with any other team. You will make dodge roll after dodge roll, go for it after go for it.

    You know that you can only fail on ones, so you will find yourself (if you’re capable of analysing your play) doing things that really you dont need to do, just because you can.

    Then you will find that you fail with double ones far more often than you would intuitively expect.
    You SHOULD fail it one in every 36 times. minimum.  which means if you are performing 9 rolls a turn (not at all unlikely for an elf player when you actually add em up and start dodging out your players where you can etc) you’ll end on a double one, once in every four turns!! thats four times every game!

    Then if you consider that really it doesnt require a double one to make you upset, the odds become a lot worse.  If at any point during your turn you roll a one and use a reroll, you now end on any single roll of one.

    The issue is that as elves you will roll a lot more dice than almost any other team, as a result you will roll a lot more ones. Not proportionally, but your mind doesnt notice things proportionally.

    Is there a point to this?
    Elves also have generally the lowest reroll count, making reroll conservation one of the most important parts of playing them well.

    It is critical when playing elves to do two things (Opinion):
    1      Minimise unnecessary actions. Additional go-for-its are a killer.
    2      Recognise that you will have players fall over. Let it happen.

    Rerolling your linesman’s dodge at the end of a turn, when you were only dodging him out to stop them hitting him, is a very common way of burning through your elf teams rerolls early in the half. Particularly because if you DO reroll it, chances are you’re just going to go do the same thing with your other linesmen, performing progressively harder dodges until you finally fail another. Then you’ll be down a reroll and you’ll STILL feel like luck is against you when in fact you’ve rolled a pretty average set of dice  (9 rolls with two 1’s in amongst it for example)

    • If you are performing up to 9 rolls a turn and all of them are with rerolls (let’s keep this simple, assume you have dodge+sure feet for all!) then you will end up with turnover 22.39% of your turns.

      50% of times your success runs will be less than 25 rolls; that is, 50% of times you’ll have a turnover before finishing turn 3. And this is the best case scenario.

      Getting a full game without turnovers at that pace you’ll be getting 1.73% chance of success.

      Worse case: you don’t have dodge or sure feet in your team, just team rerolls. And you still want to push your luck until that 9 rolls. 51.5% of your turns will end up with a turnover. And you will burn your rerolls at a rough rate of four rerolls per five turns, needing 6-7 rerolls each half.

      What about stopping after a successful reroll? First of all, it would be pointless (why use a reroll just to end turn?) The turnover will still haunt you about every 4th turn (24.1%) because those double ones come more often than people think. Half of the times you’ll stop before taking the 6th roll – and very 6th time it’s be a turnover.

      Taking these rolls constantly is like lottery: of course you’re going to get some numbers right. Getting them all is near damn impossible!

    • Yeah but i still feel special when i get Double skulls on a two dice roll, rerroll and get another double skull, and my level 5 wardancer break armor and die against a st 2 lizardman.

      I quit playing blood bowl for a few months after that

  6. All advice above is excellent. It’s a risk / odds game. So when stakes are maxed out, burn rerolls and feel no shame. I suggest two more factors that come into the risk calculation: position and time.

    Close to the end zone, when your runner HAS to get that pickup four squares from touchdown to avoid his horde decending on him and beating him to a pulp, take the reroll and hopefully the TD. Conversely, when most players and the ball are near the centre of the field, consider allowing the double 1 turnover because global risk is low. Can he score from one unlucky turnover given where the ball and players are? This is what makes high movement teams dangerous – the answer is often yes. But even those teams must create or wait for the opportunity to come.

    When the number of turns left is close to the time it would take you to get to his line in the ideal case, turn up the risk knob up a notch. Of course on the last turn there is no point holding back on achieving that ‘ideal’ sequence of events if you are in that position.

    So the worst time to take a reroll is in the low risk early few rounds of the half when the ball is far from either TD zone with low chance of getting there. Take the time to position better for the final blitz and accept the luck that comes.

    Satisfaction comes from minimizing your risk, and maximising the opponents, not the actual outcome of the rolls.


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