Sunday, 29 July 2012

Stillwater Stiffs 11-1-1

The Stiffs are back to their winning ways this week. I had a game lined up against Paul's Underworld Team; the SPP Donation Society so we got together at the club to mash it up over beer and greasy fast food.

Paul's team had developed a bit since I last played them and there were some frightening players in his team. He of course had his Mighty Blow/Claw Troll but also both his Skaven Blitzers now had Guard to help him with the hitting, he had a Skaven lineman with Wrestle to open up my line or drop the ball carrier and he had a sprinkling of various mutations across his Goblins which meant they would be a royal pain in the butt. I wasn't much looking forward to trying to contain his team. In the end I didn't really need to be worried due to some rather poor rolling on Paul's behalf and some very good rolling on my behalf. So that being said I'll try to quickly break down the play through the two halves.

For the first half I won the roll off and decided to receive. A very good kick followed by a 'Blitz' result on the kick off table allowed Paul to sneak some players through to catch the ball before I had a chance to do anything. That's about where Paul's luck started turning to custard. When my first turn started I began knocking over his players left, right and centre and it seemed I couldn't roll lower than an 8 for armour or injury. So by the end of turn four Paul had only his Troll left on the pitch. Having suffered a similar fate previously at the hands of Sass, and knowing how un-fun it is to watch your opponent wind down the clock while you can do nothing I decided to score at the start of my fifth turn and make more of a game from it. Paul managed to wake up enough players so he could get a full squad on the pitch. The progression from here was Paul trying to run one of his Goblins down my left side of the field for a last minute touchdown. I couldn't get a good block on him so I simply had to try and put as many tacklezones as possible between him and the endzone. Ultimately it was enough and in the dying seconds of the first half his Goblin was brought down while running for a touchdown.

Paul received in the second half and pushed down my right sideline this time, as you can probably tell from the photo above. After a bit of scrimmage with my Wights I managed to turn the ball over and start carrying it back up field with one of my Ghouls. My Armour and Injury rolls were abysmal this half balancing out my exceptional rolling in the first half so Paul had plenty of players on the pitch to turn things around. Unfortunately this is where is bad luck kicked in as no matter how many blocks he threw at my Ghoul carrying the ball he just simply couldn't get the ball loose. In the end my Ghoul managed to dodge his way through centre field and score another touchdown right at the end of the second half.

So one more game down and only three more to go before the end of the second round robin. I have yet to play Jim's Ogres, Michael's Slann and Simon's Humans. I'm looking forward to the last few games of the regular season as all three teams have had a little time to develop and are looking quite challenging. My next game is with Simon at the end of August so I'll be sure to post then and I'll see if I can get a few more pictures.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Stillwater Stiffs 10-1-1

Well it had to happen. I've had more than my fair share of games where the Armour and Injury rolls have gone heavily in my favour so it was only a matter of time before Nuffle would decide to turn the tables. The Stillwater Stiffs have taken their first official loss of the season, much to the delight of my fellow coaches I might add, and it was a pretty gruesome game too boot.

The game was against Sass' Norse team the Frosty Snowmen. My first game against the Frosty Snowmen was a draw so they are now officially the only team I haven't beaten. That leaves me hoping that if I make it to the play-offs we can get a rematch. But anyway, on with the game details.

I once again forgot to take photos. Considering the game was played at my house I had no excuse not to but the thought quickly fled my mind as I found myself constantly under pressure during the game. Simply put; I had bigger things to worry about.

Sass won the roll off and decided to receive. He was 380k down on team value so for inducements he took a wizard, a Re-Roll (giving him a total of two) and two Bloodweiser Babes...he didn't need any of them.

First block of the game Sass laid the smackdown on one of my Zombies and sent him straight to the KO bin. In hindsight I see now this was a sign of things to come but at the time I didn't think much of it. The game progressed back and forth with me filling gaps to create a solid defence and Sass retrieving the ball and forming a cage. By about the third of fourth turn I noticed my defensive line was quite stretched and I was wondering why I was struggling so much to contain him. I looked over at my dugout and sure enough there was the reason. In that time Sass had managed to Knock Out 5 of my players. It was amazing! It seemed like every time one of my players fell over they decided they had, had enough and played dead (har har har) so someone would carry them off the pitch. The game continued and in the last couple of turns of the first half I was left with four players on the pitch. Sass pressed his advantage but did leave the ball carrier open enough for me to sneak a blitz in with my star Wight (thank god he was still on the pitch). He turned over the ball and then remained standing after Sass' blitz action the following turn. It was at this point I did something really stupid. I had a Ghoul up field in a tacklezone and I had the choice to dodge out with my Wight, who was surrounded by Snowmen, or pass to the Ghoul. There was only one square to dodge too and it was in two tackle zones. I was afraid of tripping and dropping the ball right in front of my endzone so I decided to pass. I needed a six and didn't get it so instead I fumbled the ball. In hindsight it would have been far better to try dodging out then passing or even carrying the ball and dodging a Ghoul away in support to protect against a blitz. But ah well, such is the benefit of hindsight. Sass picked up the ball and scored. By that time I had six players knocked out and one injured and just to add insult to injury Nuffle decided to let only one of my knocked out players wake up. The rest remained snoozing. So after an ineffectual last turn in my first half we moved on to the second half.

I had managed to wake up enough players to get ten men on the field. I was optimistic about this. I knew I could easily score with ten players and if I could score quickly I could wake up more men and get a full squad on the field. So we set up and I got ready for some aggressive play.

The second half started good with my Wights sending two of Sass' players off the field bruised and bloody within the first two turns. Things were looking up for the Stiffs and it seemed as though they wanted to redeem themselves. This it appeared was wishful thinking. Sass decided it was time to bring out the Wizard and dropped a Fireball on open ground in the middle of my cage. Of course it was only fitting that the Fireball caught my ball carrier and halted my advance. I had to bring players back to protect the ball and that was all Sass needed to bring the weight of numbers to bear...

...hang on! I said I got two off the field and I started with ten players. So surely that means I had the advantage of numbers!?!

Well you'd think so wouldn't you. But as soon as my drive stalled Sass got a few knock downs from Blocks and guess what happened? My guys started getting carried off the field again. One thing led to another and I had only about four players left again (possibly less, I can't remember). Then Sass managed to casually catch a bouncing ball with his Norse Werewolf (I think I may have sworn at this stage) and prance in for a second Touchdown. The only thing worse than finishing the second half 2-Nil down after that game was seeing that Sass still had one of his two Re-Rolls left. His rolling had been so good that in eight turns he had used a Re-Roll only once.

So in closing; a very forgettable game though it certainly taught me what it has felt like for some of the other coaches to play my team when I'm having a lucky day. I've picked up the odd thing about what I could do better next time and will try to put that into effect. I can only hope that in my next game the luck is a bit more balanced and I can keep on track to making the Play-Offs.