Skaven Throwers

Blood Bowl Skaven Thrower
Skaven Thrower Overview:

Skaven Throwers have the potential to be one of the best passers in the game. While they lack the higher agility of the elves they have some other things going for them. First up being Skaven, they move fast, on par speed wise as Wood Elf Throwers, this can make the difference between making a pass or not. They start with the combo of Sure Hands and Pass, and can get more passing skills to compliment and improve their passing ability. The last option Skaven have that helps is mutation access, there are some handy mutations that can aid certain actions that the Thrower may need to perform.

There are different schools of thought regarding Skaven Throwers though, some coaches may not use any, preferring to do everything with the Gutter Runners. I think they serve a very useful purpose though, even at a basic level of giving you some extra skills on the pitch. My preference is to build an offensive and a defensive Thrower. I usually build the offensive one first as getting three skills (Accurate, Safe Throw and Strong Arm) takes longer than just getting Block would.

Having one for each side of the game allows you to have have someone who is more reliable at both passing and picking the ball up on the pitch all the time. You may not start with two early on in team development though and Gutter Runners with a team reroll are still usually better at picking the ball up and dodging away again if needed. With the passing skill access though, throwing long passes will be easier with a developed Thrower, especially as Gutter Runners are best used for other jobs.

Deep Offensive Thrower:

  • Normal:  Accurate, Safe Throw, Block/Nerves of Steel
  • Doubles: Strong Arm/Sure Feet, Extra Arms
  • Stat Increase: +ST +MV +AG

This guy you want to get the ball and sit nice and deep to draw the other team down the pitch, then using his good movement and long passing ability to move the ball a long way. The more developed he is the better you can do this, until then you need to keep the passes ideally at quick range. The high movement means you can sit in the centre of your half and go collect the ball anywhere it lands. Accurate and Strong Arm both help with developing the long passing ability, while Safe Throw will help against interceptions. Sure Feet is an alternative on doubles, the extra two square of movement could shorten the pass like Strong Arm and also avoid an interception attempt. It also allows a bit more freedom of movement in the backfield when retrieving the ball. Extra Arms can be useful as well, makes the pick ups easier and if you pick the ball up with a team mate, they can pass it to him instead, gaining them an extra SPP.

Stat increases are worth having, he won’t make the best use of +ST, though if you get it early take it and build him the alternate way. +MV will help like I explained for Sure Feet and +AG is obviously useful for all ball handling rolls as well as helping to dodge away if you get marked.

Defensive Ball Retriever:

This guy you setup for when you are kicking to the other team. He is more likely to get hit than the other one, so Block would make a good first skill. After that Accurate or Nerves of Steel will help with passing if you are marked. Doubles, Extra Arms or Big Hand will help with picking the ball up in tackle zones and Two Heads or Dodge will help with moving to the ball or getting away with it afterwards. This build will probably be doing more dodging in general so making that easier is useful, which also ties in with getting Fend as well.

Any stat increase is useful on this guy, +ST will help more with blocking and getting blocked, +AG and +MV help the same as for the other build. You can also consider +AV on this guy as he will probably take more hits than the other one who you want to keep away from the other team as much as you can.

Skaven Thrower Summary:

Depending on your skill rolls may dictate which you build first as well, +ST could make a difference, or a doubles roll on the first skill upgrade so you can get Strong Arm to get the easier build of a deep thrower. That is my own preference and it may not fit into your game plan so don’t take it as a must do thing. Leader is also a possibility, though there are so many useful skills to get a Skaven Thrower that personally I don’t bother. Skaven are also cheap so the TV saving isn’t that vital, though depending on how badly your team suffers injury wise, it could be useful as a money saver.

12 thoughts on “Skaven Throwers”

  1. Hey, great work on all the articles so far. I’m a new Blood Bowl player and I’ve found everything you put up really useful.
    I hope to see more articles soon!

  2. This has been fantastic tips and I’m really learning a lot about Skaven!  (Who are becoming my favorite team!)  PLEASE add write-ups for Rat Ogres and Blitzers!

  3. I don’t really understand the line of thinking that you should only have one (or none!) throwers on a skaven team. Yes, a Gutter Runner can do the job at a pinch, but if you have no throwers, all you get is more linerats instead.

    The thrower and the linerat have identical stats, but the thrower starts with sure hands and pass, making them much more useful right off the bat. And since the thrower is far easier to skill up with completions or just running in the TD, and has access to passing skills, they have much greater potential than the humble linerat. And if they die, their replacement is much faster/easier to skill up also!

    At only 20K more than the line rat, the TV difference is neglible, so why wouldn’t you take two?

  4. I think it is more in the starting roster that some people don’t take a Thrower. Saves them a bit of money to perhaps get another reroll, or front load with Gutter Runners. They may change their mind now you don’t need to spend any money on Fan Factor and front loading with Gutter Runners is easy. Personally I always start a Skaven team with one Thrower. I’ll get around to doing starting rosters for all the races with a few variations to pick from and the benefits of each.

  5. How about the all around throw with
    strong arm
    Nerves of steel
    Safe throw
    Hail Mary Pass( if you wosh but not my style)
    I like that with a movement 10 gutter runner with sprint sure feet and diving catch just incase you miss your pass. It gives you a great chance of scoring one turn tochdowns

    • With only two Throwers is is harder to get one with an agility increase, apart from that it is essentially the first suggested build! Not a fan of a dedicated one turn scorer build like that, though you can read more on that in the Gutter Runner article, chain push backs work fine as outlined in the MV6 One Turn Touchdown article.

  6. What about Dump off, I know it would be a late skill but it could be a nice addition to a team that is going to have three or four pieces with AG4 around. I consider that you don’t want the ball carrier getting hit, but sometimes there may not be an option. I’m not experienced with running/passing teams, so I have only played Dark Elves because the low armour of other teams scares me, and I liked the way it works on their runners.

    • Personally I’ve never found it that useful most of the time on Dark Elf teams as I always try and keep the ball carrier safe. I’d rather get Accurate, Block (just in case and makes them able to hit if needed), Safe Throw and Nerves of Steel first. Any doubles in there again coming before Dump Off even enters my mind. If the ball does get knocked loose, it should usually be hard for the other team to recover the ball and I can likely recover it on my turn anyway.

      That isn’t to say that Dump Off can’t work on a Skaven Thrower, it just doesn’t suit how I tend to play. You’re certainly going to want Nerves of Steel and Accurate to help prevent just throwing it on the ground and it also meant keeping at least one Gutter Runner nearby (who probably will get marked first so again will like to have Nerves of Steel) rather than having them harassing the opponents or getting into scoring positions.

  7. What about Kick on a “generalist” Thrower, someone you’re playing on every drive? I think even as second skill after Block. Skaven can capitalize on a good Kick better than anyone so it’s a key skill for them and your Thrower is more likely than a Linerat to get to two skills and you’re less likely to throw him to the wolves.

    • As mentioned in the linerat article, Kick should be the first (or at latest second, if you want a Dirty Player) skill you give to a skilled linerat. There are so many much better general or passing skills to take, Leader would be my suggested second skill for your “non-passing” thrower (after Block), especially now under 2016 rules you have to buy your team rerolls every season if your league uses drafting!
      Basically because linerats aren’t going to live long enough to generate a useful combo give one Kick and save your throwers for other stuff.


Leave a comment

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