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4Nov/190

Journey of the Maulers: Forever Gabru

After I started to play my Wanderleague parallely to painting the remaining players, the presentation mode has also changed slightly. Besides the introduction of a new player I will also try to give some game summaries, give an update about the season and add some snapshots.

Journey of the Maulers - Gabru Kneebreaka

But first the next player: Gabru Kneebreaka is, as the name suggests, from the fanclub of da Kneebreakaz. The idea for it came before I even painted the fans. This Blitzer is a homage, a small thank you to all the faithful readers, who follow the project now already in the 15th article.

Gabru Kneebreaka

One of the guys stood out during the tryout. A certain Gabru, who sprang from the fanclub of the Kneebreakaz, showed all the qualities you needed as a Blitzer in a Blood Bowl team. He was fast, could deal a good scrap and was't too clumsy with the ball either. No one knew at the time, but Gabru would establish a tradition that would ensure that there would always be a Gabru Kneebreaka in the team of the Maulers ...

The idea behind Gabrus' background was that every time that player would stop playing, whether through deserved retirement, sustained injury or even glorious demise, a fan would move up from the ranks of the Kneebreakaz to take the name and position. This version of Gabru, for example, is filthy rich for an orc, and with the many teeth on his gear, he's always showing off. But the very next day already someone else could put on the jersey, with a completely different character. Only one thing is for sure - the Maulers can rely on the support and commitment of Gabru Kneebreaka.

Journey of the Maulers - Gabru Kneebreaka Journey of the Maulers - Gabru Kneebreaka

This gave me the opportunity to write a different background and be creative for each incarnation of this player.

Now that the team is almost completely painted, it's time to play a few games and paint the rest of the players at the same time. The more optional rules you use, the more random factors will occur in the league and the more Blood Bowl will become a team management roleplaying game rather than a competitive tournament system. Some players might not agree which of them is the bigger celebrity, another one might run off with a cheerleader and yet another one could've had such a bad time the night before that he's got the runs during the game. It's the everyday madness in a Blood Bowl team.

Good evening sports friends! I would like to welcome you to the start of a new season in the Old World! I am Jim Johnson...

...and I'm Bob Bifford.

Well, if this isn't a coincidence, Bob!

It isn't Jim. With the start of the new season, Mork's Maulers celebrate their return to the Blood Bowl fields, after the team almost disappeared completely last year.

What has changed so dramatically with the Maulers that they are now back on track Bob?

An old buddy of mine, Boz "da Boss" Bonebreaka has taken over the team. And if he's only half as tough as he was back in our days, he should have the squad back on a winning record in no time.

 

I played my first match against Jens' human team, the Altdorf Avengers. Jens also runs his own YouTube channel. If you can get along with German-language contributions, you will find many interesting vids here. Right at the beginning of the match we made a mistake, as both of us hadn't played with the new league rules yet and so each of us got W3 special play cards, like in a showmatch, instead of the one, which is determined by the amount of the team value.

And here they come Jim, the winners of the Bloodweiser Light contract, together with their team captain, Helmut Hammer!

He should take good care of his health Bob. Such a rising star almost has a target sign for a jersey number.

Jens drew the "Ascending Star" from the cards, which ensured that one of his team's players would receive an additional MVP award if he was still on the field by the end of the game. To ensure his survival, he also gave him Spranley's Cup, a suspensory to protect him from fouls. He played with the team from the starting box, two additional linemen and three ReRolls. That's a very mild lineup, because human teams develop enormous power with four Blitzers in particular.

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

I opposed him with a classic league formation: four Blitzers, four blackorcs, two linemen and a thrower, with three ReRolls. Nowadays I wouldn't line up like this anymore, because this is a line up for a quite competitive environment and I actually want to play in a relaxed way. Twenty years ago, when I put this team together for the first time, the Blood Bowl scene was a lot more conservative than it is today. At the end of the season, I will continue to play the team in a different constellation.

First half

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

Since he kicked the ball to me, I put four players on the line of scrimmage and played a little riskier with the blocks, trying to get two-dice blocks more often. A common strategy with orcs is to grab the ball and then rumble it over the field for a half. That worked quite well and in the very first turn I managed to injure one of his linemen. He suffered a severe concussion (misses the next game, -1 armor value).

Until the seventh play, I moved steadily forward, but Jens' Avengers resisted with all their might. Then he lost another player by a collarbone fracture (misses the next game, -1 strength). Still, Jens wasn't ready to give up the score in the first half. His Blitzer Werner Wüterich sent Rotfang into the death and injured box. He broke his neck and would have suffered a -1 modifier on his agility, but the card "Magic Sponge" saved him and so I could move him into the reserve box.

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

Thrat the Threat didn't put up with that and traded blows with Werner - in comparison to his colleagues Werner got away lightly with a strain and would only need to sit out the next game.

Just moments before the whistle ended the first half, Gulgur Goldfingaz managed to push the ball into the endzone. So in the second half it was mainly about avoiding the equalizer.

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

Second half

Say, Jim... what smells so good in here?

That's Soaren Hightower's lucky sock Bob. Worn only twice!

Oh, that's often, for an Elf...

What does actually happen when you have a player who has gained a few star player points through a touchdown? That's right, he's getting the beating! Helmut Hammer struck again and my thrower wouldn't have been able to play the rest of the game if it hadn't been for Hightower's lucky sock! Thanks to this fragrant utensil I was able to turn Gulgur back on his back without him having to quit the match.

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

While luck was spreading on my side, bad luck started to spread in the dugout of the Avengers. A few dice throws later, another field player joined his comrades there. But in the following turn Jens' great moment came. His thrower grabbed the ball and set off for a megapass that landed confidently in the hands of his catcher who had run free with the courage of desperation.

WOW JIM! LOOK AT THIS LONG BOMB!

What a pass Bob! Who would have thought that the Avengers would outrun the Maulers' defensive again?

Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers Journey of the Maulers - Match vs Altdorf Avengers

Damn, I was starting to break a sweat and I had only one trump left. But just to reach the catcher I would need several Go-for-its. Wait, what was that? The ace up my sleeve came to my mind...a heckler on the sideline provided so much distraction that the catcher forgot about his qualities for a moment. I played the card so he could no longer use his skills until my next turn started. My Blitzer began to run...made his first sprint...his second...and then the Blitz knocked Jens' catcher out of his shoes.

That was a last-second rescue! The remaining turns I pulled my players as close as possible and put as many tackle zones on the ball as I could. Then the referee blew the whistle and I trembled to victory - hats off Jens, even with a weaker line-up it's always a challenge to play against you!!!

The Avengers' catcher had earned his distinction as MVP of the match. On my side, a Blackorc was awarded with this honour and learned the skill "Block". With Jens' squad his rising star Helmut Hammer also received a skill.

When we rolled for the earnings he received 60,000 gold pieces which was more than earned. I myself received 40,000 gold pieces and another 20,000 on top, for the victory and the FAME bonus. 12,000 fans had seen the game, of which 7,000 were Maulers followers.

 

Epilogue

Although the Athelorn Avengers suffered a defeat, Jens proved to be an excellent coach, both from a sporting and a playing point of view. My advice would be to get two more Blitzers from somewhere and add an ogre to the team to give the squad a bit more speed and punch.

From my side, I can say that I find it difficult to go into a league game with only eleven players. Especially with orcs every player loss is painful and I have kept the squad alive with more luck than good coaching.

I'm happy that Jens decided to play a Wander League after the game, too, because this way this style of playing also gets a little more popularity and maybe one or the other coach will give this narrative way of playing a chance during this season.

That was a close win for the Maulers Jim.

Yes...at least we've seen a lot of blood during the match!

Ha, that's true! Even if both teams still have a long way to go, one thing is for sure, they already know how to entertain.

 

Greetings from the Chaosbunker
Dino

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