Tuesday, 22 May 2012
Stillwater Stiffs 7-0-1
The top of the table clash has finally come around and as you can probably tell from the stats above, the Stiffs remain at the top of the leader board. By the time the 16th turn rolled round it was 3-0 win but the scoreline was in no way indicative of how the game played out. Being such a monumental event I thought it best to take my camera and grab a few shots so here they are:
We rolled for the weather and it was kind of fitting for such a pivotal match that two 6's turned up. The game was going to be played in a blizzard. Paul won the roll for kick off and decided to receive so here are the SPP Donation Society a couple of turns after kick off. Paul had moved a Gobbo and a Thrower through to create a passing threat which I quickly moved back to block allowing him to build a cage. With the cage being slower moving I thought I would have time enough to eliminate the catchers and then push the cage into the sideline.
What I didn't take into account was my blocking. It was far less than spectacular for the first few turns which left a high number of my players tied up in mid field while Paul pushed his cage toward the endzone. The silver lining was that Paul's Troll went stupid at some very opportune moments. A trait he was to continue for the rest of the game.
While I desperately tried to move guys over to block the touchdown Paul was up to some less than chivalrous antics by the sideline. One of my Ghouls had foolishly allowed himself to be knocked over in front of a mob of Goblins. So they started putting the boot in...
By about the third or fourth turn Paul was close enough to the endzone to risk a touchdown. He broke free of the cage and ran his Thrower toward the endzone. All he needed was a single go for it roll and the score would have been 1-0. Today wasn't his day as the ice on the pitch formed by the blizzard tripped is Thrower up just as he passed the line. His Thrower dropped the ball and the Stiffs were granted a miracle opportunity. My boys got straight into it, pushing a Goblin over the sideline and letting the crowd do the dirty work and then isolated any threat to me picking up the ball.
Ronaldo grabbed the ball and raced up the other end of the field. His team mates screened him and he was able to dive over the line in the dying seconds of the first half.
The second half started with my all too familiar futile attempts at blocking and Paul's all too familiar futile attempts at moving his Troll. I managed to retrieve the ball ok and brought it back to my line. From there though I was struggling to form a good cage or move the line forward.
My Ghoul in the centre is holding the ball is this is just when I have seen a gap open on the right and decided to switch my run for the line from the left sideline to the right. From here I pushed back the Goblin and Thrower on Paul's left and formed a wall of protective players on the widezone line while I sprinted my Ghoul up field. In forming the wall I had my closest call with the ice as one of my Ghouls failed his 'go for it'. Thankfully a re-roll saved me. From here Paul did his best to put pressure on me but the majority of his team were too far away to help so I needed to roll very badly in order for him to get the ball. I didn't roll badly and Ronaldo ran in a second touchdown.
At this point the game was pretty much in the bag for the Stiffs but Paul's woes weren't over. An extremely bad kick off result allowed my Ghoul; Lichbein, through for another touchdown and Paul was left with one turn to try and salvage something from the game.
Here was the final deployment for the last turn as Paul tried for the "One turn touchdown".
I deployed deep to try and catch the flying Goblin in a tackle zone and force him to make a lot of dodge rolls. Paul set up the play (which seemed like it took hours, there's actually quite a lot of rolling required to throw a Goblin) and the Goblin was hurled down field. His original destination was looking quite good, all that remained was to scatter the pass and then land the Goblin. Paul rolled for the scatter and it started out quite good, but then the Goblin started drifting closer and closer to my line like a bad Golfer's hook. He ended up right in front of my Mummy and Wight and with two tackle zones he couldn't stick the landing. As he crashed down in a heap the final whistle blew and the crowds emptied the stadium to fill the taverns and reminisce upon the game.
Overall I was pretty happy with the game though Paul taught me a lot about targeting certain players with your blocking early in the game. A Troll with 'Claw' and 'Mighty Blow' is a vicious combo. The dice certainly weren't in Paul's favour though he wasn't without opportunities either. He rolled far more 'go for it's than I did and he put a lot more trust in his Troll to take Blitz actions than I would have. In a blizzard you have a 33% chance of failing your 'go for it' rolls which aren't odds I like so I avoided it unless there was a very juicy reward that would make it worth the risk. Even though Trolls only go stupid on a roll of a '1' they're still too unreliable for me to trust them with a pivotal blitz. I'd rather let them beat the line of scrimmage senseless and use my reliable blitzers to do the blitzing with a little help from any players who have the 'guard' skill.
A great game overall and watching Paul play a team that is clearly much more challenging than my own has convinced me that in the next league I need to drop the Undead for something that is going to stretch me much further. Underworld may very well be the team to try.