I went to bed late last night, having had to cross town in a panic to get my dice from where I’d left them in the office. My dice. My super hot dice.
It was already getting hot as I got my rideshare up to Everett. My driver asked me if I was going to take a ferry to the islands. No. I was going to a room by a bowling alley to stay indoors all day and play boardgames.
My first match was against a Canadian called Dylan, and his Chaos Dwarfs. I’ve had lots of trouble with Dwarf teams in the past, because they have the ability to take a lot of punishment without flinching, and then mete it out. Chaos Dwarfs are worse, as they have that, plus speed from their horrible mutated centaurs.
Still. I won the coin toss, chose to kick and then rolled a blitz. With my fast rats running across the pitch and Stuart Little, my Rat Ogre blitzing, I got on the ball and scored in the first turn of the game. And then on the next kick off, I got another blitz. The dice were not with him.
Dylan ground his way to a score in the 7th turn but didn’t hurt me much (maybe 1 dead). Every team got a free (but mandatory) mutation for one team member (the downside being that the mutant sometimes gets sick and goes to the reserves box to recuperate) and so although I had a four armed ratman, he was no good to me.
In the second half, still having 11 players, I scored in 3 turns without much trouble. Now we were 2-1 up without much time left. Angelina Ballerina kicked the ball deep, and then although he got the ball down field and was within two turns of scoring, Stuart Little had him pinned to the sideline and without enough reinforcements, he was out of time. I hate it when we don’t get to finish a full 16 turns, but having been denied victory in previous tournaments when somebody else ran the clock down with slow play while they had the ball, I wasn’t not going to take that.
The second match was the most fun, I think. My opponent was up from Portland and very cheerful. Perhaps you would be too if you fielded a Miami Dolphins-themed team of Chaos renegades with 2 chainsaws, a Minotaur, an Ogre and a Troll. I thought I was done for with my squishy rats, but somehow he didn’t manage to put the hurt on me. Again, I kicked to him but couldn’t force a quick score (and naturally he was trying to take his time before the chainsaws got sent off). I pushed his ball carrier into the end zone at the 7th turn. My other highlight was burning rerolls and a blitz to shove somebody into the crowd. Probably an overuse of effort…
The second half went to plan. We battered a hole through the centre with our Rat Ogre. then got an early touchdown in the second half (rat Ogre made a hole, threw the ball through and then I was done.) Angelina kicked deep once more, the rats ran through and managed to get the ball away from him again. I thought about scoring quickly but then ran to one side of the pitch to burn a little time, and then scored when he got close to me. That gave him a last chance to equalise, and he got the ball forward in the last two turns, but again I had him sandwiched up against the sidelines, and the prehensile tail of Stuart Little, combined with lots of tackle zones, meant he needed to throw a few 6s to win. He rolled a 1, the game was over 2-1.
I made a few errors in this game, failing to move players that were then mercilessly battered, but otherwise I felt I did pretty well. Again, it may be that the speed and agility of the Skaven makes them a bit too easy, but having previously drawn 7 of the 9 games I’d played in tournaments with them, I don’t think winning with them is a foregone conclusion.
My last game was against Humans, a slightly odd build. He’d gone half for agility and half for hitting people, but that was a bad compromise. He had no players capable of tackling my more agile gutter runners, and no really hard hitters either.
He rolled nothing but skulls. Nothing. He didn’t make it easy for himself – in his first turn he went to pick up the ball first. He rolled a 1, rerolled it to a 2 (both failures). Then in his next turn, after I’d already battered him a bit, he tried blocking with his linemen, who had no skills and were therefore rather unreliable. When he did pick up the ball, I surfed his carrier into the crowd with the Rat Ogre and scored in turn 3. I kicked off again, again, he had terrible luck, and I ran past him to score. Third time, similar, although that time he got a few players onto my ball carrier. Then Stuart Little and Mr Jingles knocked them down and I had a straight run in to score.
And it kept getting worse. On the next kick off I got a bribe from the ref which meant I could foul with impunity. He was down to 7 players and I had a full team, and I think his heart wasn’t in it by then. I have some sympathy, for I’ve had teams of mine without enough skills, and they just burn rerolls and punish you for not being lucky. After all that, I had to buy him a drink to assuage my guilt.
And then after that, I won the Most Touchdowns prize, an effigy of the Seattle Space Needle embraced by tentacles. So between that and last week, I’ve had a great slew of prizes at the tournaments I’ve attended.
I went home, played in my league game, and almost got a 2-2 draw. My goblins are halfway competent (or lucky) now, so I’m feeling in a good place.