Tentacles (Mutation)

The player may use this skill when an opposing player attempts to dodge or leap out of any of his tackle zones. The opposing coach rolls 2D6 adding his player’s ST and subtracting the Tentacles player’s ST from the score. If the final results is 5 or less, then the moving player is held firm, and his Action ends immediately. If a player attempts to leave the tackle zone of several players that have the Tentacles skill, only one may attempt to grab him with Tentacles.

Tentacles Overview:

Tentacles is a weapon in the arsenal of the stronger players in the game who are able to mutate for whatever reason. The use of Tentacles is rather straight forward in that it only does one thing and that is to prevent opposing players from moving out of your tackle zone. The stronger your Tentacles player is compared to the opposing player trying to either dodge or leap away, the better your chances of keeping them held still. This is why you tend to see it on the strongest players on a team and it gets less effective on the weaker ones, so much so that I wouldn’t recommend taking it anyone who isn’t at least ST4 or higher. As it works better the larger the strength difference, the best players to target are the weakest ones on the opposing team. ST2 or less is best but it can also work on ST3 players as well. At the very least it forces them another die roll which can fail.

Being able to keep the weak players next to you is rather helpful, typically because the weaker the player is, the more agile and faster they tend to be. Taking away these advantages from those players is of great benefit to you as the opposing team will have to probably change their plan to something less likely to work by using other players who were less suited to what they were aiming to do.

When you have multiple opponents in your tackle zones you need to watch out that any action you perform with your Tentacles player may accidentally free up the opposing players you have currently occupied. This is especially true on Big Guys who have negative skills that mean they lose their tackle zone entirely, leaving the opposing players free to run away. Due to this it may be better when you are in a good situation like that to just leave your player as he is and force the opponent to take action. The same can be said for blocking opposing players, you may end up pushing an opponent away meaning you have to follow up to keep them in your tackle zone. However this follow up may then free up another player you were marking before the block. Watch out for situations like that.

Tying into the above you will find that the opposing team may look to either knock over your player, or just get a push back to free their players up. Skills that prevent this are obviously very helpful, Stand Firm being the best skill in combination with Tentacles. Other skills that combine well are ones that make dodging away hard for them even if they do manage to break free of your Tentacles. So Tackle, Diving Tackle and Prehensile Tail can be used to good effect. Break Tackle is also another useful skill so that you can move your player to where they can tie up the most opponents possible, rather than being left marked by a solitary Lineman. If you do decide to go down the route of hitting opponents you have marked up then Grab becomes very helpful so that you can keep those players next to you even after a push back without having to follow up.

One last tactic that can be used with Tentacle players, is to push opposing players into their tackle zone. This is especially useful if your Tentacle player has a skill that can make them lose their tackle zone. If you push opposing players next to them, then you get the benefits of their skill without the risk of them going Stupid if you tried to move them on their own accord.

Benefits of Tentacles:
  • Can prevent weak, fast agile opponents from moving
  • Makes Big Guys even more useful without taking actions with them (negates their negative traits somewhat)
  • Tie up multiple opponents effectively

Players Tentacles is useful to:

The Beast of Nurgle starts with Tentacles and it is very useful to them. Foul Appearance also helps avoid getting pushed away too. Similar players to this are the ones you are looking at selecting Tentacles for. Pretty much all the Big Guys who can take Mutations are worth giving Tentacles. Underworld Troll, Chaos Dwarf and Chaos Minotaurs, Rat Ogres, the three Chaos Pact Big Guys.

The last real options are the ST4 players on those teams, which is just Chaos Warriors and Nurgle Warriors. These players have plenty of alternative skills that are going to perhaps be more useful though so it won’t be as common. If one of them gets a strength increase up to ST5 though, then Tentacles becomes more worthwhile. As I said the bigger the strength difference the better Tentacles works. So ST4 players in general perhaps edge on the side of not taking it. All the ST3 or lower players who have access to Tentacles you shouldn’t in my opinion waste  a skill choice on it. Even though there is an official Blood Bowl Miniature of a Chaos Beastman with Tentacles, that doesn’t mean it is a good skill choice!

21 thoughts on “Tentacles”

  1. I have seen Tentacles be a real pain to my skaven when playing against a standfirm, guard Beast of Nurgle.  All sorts of problems.

    I use my Beastman tentacle model currently just to mark a player on my team who has tackle.

  2. Im a little confused regarding tentacle. In the Cyanide version of the game, it seems that when someone dodges out of a tentacle players tackle zone, both players role a dice. Based on that roll and adjusting for strength, it then calculates if you succeed or not. This makes pro great on a tentacles player as you can reroll the tentacles roll, even though its not your turn.

    Is this a change from LRB5 to LRB6?

  3. If an opposing player tries to move out of a zone covered by two players with tentacles skill, do they have to take two STR tests before they can move?

  4. Sorry didn’t read carefully enough, from the rulebook: “If a player attempts to leave the
    tackle zone of several players that have the Tentacles ability, then only
    one of the opposing players may attempt to grab him with the tentacles.”
    Not intuitive imo but then since I’m playing Chaos, probably a biased opinion 🙂

    • Tentacles will always work automatically (assuming you want to use the skill) if a player trys to leave your Tackle Zone. Wild Animal doesn’t ever cause the player to use his Tackle Zone so there is no special interaction and Tentacles works the same on a player without Wild Animal as it does a player with Wild Animal.

    • They do different things so they don’t stack but they can work in combination to some degree.

      If an opponent tries to dodge away they first have to pass a Tentacles roll. If they succeed they then have to do a dodge roll which will be at -1 due to Prehensile Tail.

    • Well… that might be a bit too much overkill. I can say from experience, tentacles on a STR 6 player is a PAIN! I would skip the prehensile tail and get either block (if you’re lucky) or Stand Firm. That way it’s more difficult to push you out of the way. The difference of 3 STR equates to about a 25% chance of being able to escape. That severely hampers an AGI team’s defense.

      • Not to mention that Tentacles on the Cyanide version of Blood Bowl is implemented in a way where your turn ends rather than allowing you to continue an action. For instance, if your ball carrier tries to dodge out and fails, he can’t then try to attempt a throw. So you have to take this into consideration when playing against Tentacles.

        • Note, that is how the skill above is written – “his Action ends immediately”. If your Pass or Hand Off action ends, you cannot then continue to make the ball handling part of that action.

          • That would only happen if you were attempting to leap or dodge out of the tackle zone before you threw/handed off the ball and to be fair you are unlikely to want to try at that point (otherwise you would probably would have passed/handed off from the square without moving).

  5. Hi guys. I’m playing Chaos Dwarves in fumbbl, and I really love this team, one of my favs. I really want to have tentacles on at least one player, but i don’t want to buy minotaur. I do have a chaos dwarf with guard and 4 points of strength. Would it be a good idea to give him tentacles if he rolls doubles? I’m really interested in making such experiment, even if its result might be an utter failure. Should I it or should I actually buy the mino for that single reason of having a stable tentacle platform?

    • There are always likely to be better choices than Tentacles but if you want to try it then go for it. I came from a time when Chaos Dwarfs didn’t have access to Mutation skills anyway, though Stand Firm was a doubles skill and better than it is now as well.

    • With only S4, Tentacles is rather unreliable. It’s not a bad choice but it won’t be something you can count on (even by BB standards). Prehensile Tail is my preferred choice if you want to discourage dodging, since with Tackle it turns that Dodge Elf into a rookie Human Lineman if they want to leave your tackle zone.

  6. I’ve heard that the leaving player has to make a dodge roll to stay upright (and not turnover) even if it doesn’t escape the tentacles. Is that true?

    • If you fail the Tentacles roll then you don’t have to attempt the dodge roll. What you’ve heard isn’t true, at least not in the official rules and certainly not since 1994.


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