You have to love random this much??

After several weeks of play in the different Cabalvision leauges I want to share my opinions (again?) about the random nature in Blood bowl online.

The "evidence" that Blood bowl is a skill game: You see many of the same coach names in the top of the ratings in the Cabalvision leauges. Yes close to every season. I agree, this is a "sign"/evidence" that skill plays an important part of the game. I have seen that also the "best" coaches reroll teams if they get major setbacks in losses and/or deaths/inj of too many players. The winrate also goes up abit if these "elite" coaches rolls the skills they want on key players (+agi, +strength upgrades specially). Since you can reroll teams as many times you want, its fully possible to reroll a team several times until you get an "early" +5 agi... Will +5 agi on one key player increase your winrate?? Yeappp of course! 5% up? 10%? Make a guess??

I think the overall level of many of the Blood bowl coaches are pretty high. Or let me put it in a different way. The % of the very skilled coaches are high. They do very little mistakes when they play. Limit their blocks, screens well, and all this. If two very skilled coaches meet, every "advantage" counts. It's like starting with white pieces with chess and this gives an overall winrate of 55% compared to starting with black. Blood bowl adds much more advantages than this if you are lucky...

A question that pops up: If both coaches are 100% evenly skilled and they both play bash teams... in 10 out of 10 matches one of the coaches can decide who starts in every match. What winrate would this give? Or agi team vs bash, or agi team vs agi team... 10 matches, same guy decides who starts the match... would be interesting too see how big advantage deciding who starts would give with the different setups in teams... I bet it will be more important than in chess... more than 55%. How much? 65-75% if they are equally skilled??

I see teams/coaches with 20-1-0 records. And this 21 matches the coach faced opponents with about the same skill level as him? I really doubt this. In a game were 3 players can get killed in the same turn (you watched the Youtube video maybe of this?), even a super coach can get screwed in seconds vs "any" average Blood bowl bob... The 20-1-0 coach... if he played 10 matches vs an equal skilled coach you need luck off the charts to win 10 of them, you all agree on this??

My theory: in USA prime "game" time the average level of the coaches are worse than the EU/Russian prime "game" time = it's easier to get a good record playing at the former. You guys agree on this?? This is actually the most interesting thing I would like to see: The nationality of the players top 20 each season and also... at what hours they play most of their games... rigging of games are non-existing or happens? [One can play with two computers in same room, one can make many accounts, one can click search battle at the same time, one can click at the same time when "few" teams are online... my experience from other games... some players does everything, and I mean everything, to win/get a good record...you doubt this?]

So... to get the best possible record: 1) Play with one of the best races in the TV range 1000-1800 (some races you rarely see in the top 20 yes??), 2) Play all games in the "optimal" winchance window 3) Reroll teams until one get some key upgrades on key players early (agi+ stuff or equal).

Some thoughts about luck in Blood bowl:

Yesterday I was "lucky" to tie the score in a match 1-1. 3 turns left and the other guy prepared for trying to get a 2-1 win. The kick off event resulted in both(!) my flank defenders got stunned on the right side. He blitzed the last player standing on that flank, player went out of pitch with a KO(!), and opponent advanced on that flank and won the match easy. The kick off event, again, decided, who won. I think me and the other guy played very even really. It was the kick off event that gave the other guy the win. With out any chance for me to stop him. Many of you "random luck junkies" will likely say... thats Blood bowl for you! Go play chess if you dont like random stuff!!! ok, yeah... I can handle a random inj or KO, but getting a whole flank stunned on a random kick off event so I lose the game without being able to fight??? And this is a tournament game??? Cyanide adds the ability to turn off kick off events, but don't add this to official tournaments?! Whole flank stunned at random, bonus turns, new defence++ well... when coaches are pretty even... this stuff decides who wins! Every advantage counts in strategy games, also for this game. Making 4 blocks in the start of a half and removing 1-2 players before the opponent can strike back helps, of course alot. Since less players reduces the blocks you can make, reduces your play in every way.

The rolling for getting players back from KO can also be a game changer. It's random how many gets knocked out, and it's random who many gets back from KO. The get back from KO thing is basicly not needed. It adds just too much random. Ok, you get KO or get surfed, but your players should be back after a goal or next half. This rolling for KO is a total unnecessary part in my opinion. At least in official tournaments with pricepools.

So: Basicly for official "competitive" tournaments... 1) remove kick-off events and 2) all players gets back in action after KO/surfed.

For other "fun" leauges: keep all luck fest stuff!! but at least "try" to make the official tournaments with a "normal" level of random?

I understand making this post is as smart and will have the same effect as spraying water on a duck. I know it will rub off and dode and voodoo, the biggest lovers of random stuff in the world, will write some stuff against this... 😉

Ok, final thoughts: Both coachs are at equal skill level and the same TV. One guy decides who starts the match, the same guy gets a bonus turn in the 2nd kick off in the match, the same guy got two guys back from KO, the other guy did not and had to play with 2 players less the last half of the match. How many % did all these benefits affect the outcome of the match. We are not talking about 5% help here... make a guess how much the winchance went up for the "lucky" guy??

last edited by Hotdogchef

tl;dr: you don't like how much chance is involved.

Read an interesting article the other day about deciding how much an activity is skill-based and how much it is luck based. The article suggested that if one could regularly deliberately lose at something then it is more skill-based than luck-based, and the more one can deliberately lose the more skill-based the activity is. I suspect I can lose at BB an awful lot if I wanted to 🙂

Regarding rigging: it's something we look for when deciding qualifiers. Thus far none of the qualifiers have engaged in anything I would consider rigging (i.e. playing 3+ matches vs the same coach or group of coaches), and a number of people have been expelled from the ladder for doing it.

@dode74 said in You have to love random this much??:

Regarding rigging: it's something we look for when deciding qualifiers. Thus far none of the qualifiers have engaged in anything I would consider rigging (i.e. playing 3+ matches vs the same coach or group of coaches), and a number of people have been expelled from the ladder for doing it.

A solo guy with two computers, two friends or brothers?, with enough brains and time on their hands, could pretty easy make enough accounts and rig a 20-1-0 record. Maybe get 1-2 losses if they gets "unlucky" when searching for "random" matchup... The games and results would of course be played in such a way that moderators would not find anything too extreme.

You agree this can be done?

Why do I write this? I do since I know this stuff is done in other games with ranking lists. Competitive contract bridge... world champions were revealed as cheaters. The rule of thumb is: If it's possible to cheat, people WILL do it.

I would also like to see at what time periodes the top 20 coaches play each season... is there a undeniable pattern...

last edited by Hotdogchef

With enough steam accounts, perhaps. But there's only so much which can be done to monitor it by us - anything else will come down to Focus.

I would also like to see at what time periodes the top 20 coaches play each season... is there a undeniable pattern...

The data is all available on GoblinSpy.

@dode74 said in You have to love random this much??:

With enough steam accounts, perhaps.

Not Steam accounts, many Blood bowl 2 accounts... even if half the games are rigged it will do alot on the ranking of that coach...

Since there has been cheating in close to every competitive game in the world.... of course there is here too.

In contract Bridge... if they had 2-3 ways of "telling" the other guy what cards they had, instead of just 1 and random rotated the 3... they probably would not been revealed as cheaters... if you are skilled in both cheating and playing... you get high on the list... very high...

I will try to look into the gametime in Goblinspy then... if I get enough time on my hands.

Not Steam accounts, many Blood bowl 2 accounts... even if half the games are rigged it will do alot on the ranking of that coach...

You only get 5 BB2 accounts per steam account. With the number of matches played by the majority of qualifiers it would take some doing to rig it. Besides, even if you do rig that bit you've then got to get through the playoffs themselves and I'm not sure that is so easy to rig at all.

@hotdogchef said in You have to love random this much??:

So: Basicly for official "competitive" tournaments... 1) remove kick-off events and 2) all players gets back in action after KO/surfed.

And yet the Kick-offs are used at "official competitive" tabletops tournaments, where it's impossible to "cheat" in the way you think is happening (though you have no proof) and there you find the same (skilled) players again and again.

A top player will, on average, cope with the vagaries of the dice better than a average player (like me). Sure, sometimes the dice will screw them enough so that even they get beaten by average players (waves again) but mostly they play the odds enough to win again and again and ...

At some point people should stop looking at excuses for their poor performance ("they beat me, they must be cheating") and understand that there are people that are just better BB coaches than them.

last edited by Darkson

No I believe there is a pretty high chance of cheating in the qualifier, not in the main fight for winner. Since this is not possible...

The highest chance of what's happening is this: Some, very few, players rig their first battles to get a optimal skills setting for their rest battles. Let's say first 5 battles or so. To get few injuries and the optimal skills. This ensures that they have a much higher chance to qualify than others... "Same player scores twice in the match... wow, yeah, that was lucky!!..."

And... with 5 steam accounts you can have 25 coaches, each with xxx teams... if Blood bowl is your "life", most adults can easy afford 5 copies of Blood bowl 2.... Guys, I only state this since I seen cheating in ALL competitive games were cheating is possible. Even in chess people are caught trying to cheat. Also in games were there is no pricepool... In one of the seasons of "Dancing with the stars" in my country... a celebrity paid 25000-30000 dollar for having an automated SMS service vote for him... and he made it top 5 at least...

last edited by Hotdogchef

@darkson said in You have to love random this much??:

At some point people should stop looking at excuses for their poor performance ("they beat me, they must be cheating") and understand that there are people that are just better BB coaches than them.

No, of course, like poker, you see many of the same players in the top. I don't deny many coaches are very skilled. Still in my main post I have covered what I think is the 3 most important things to get a qualifier place... a little cheating can help get to the qualifier easier, but very few cheat... and mostly just to get a head start in the qualifier?

The main things you can do to get a high winrate is to play at correct time of the day/night... with a race with best potential and reroll until you get key skills/abilities early as possible...

If you get to the main tournament... Blood bowl is a game were any random player can beat a master... the luck element can spin total out of control in match... but we all know this... not sure why I point it out 😉

last edited by Hotdogchef

@hotdogchef said in You have to love random this much??:

The main thing you can do to get a high winrate is to play at correct time of the day/night... with a race with best potential and reroll until you get key skills/abilities early as possible...

Which might be true if the consistent top Table Top players could do, but they can't.
Maybe those things have a small effect on online play (I say maybe, you've yet to give any proof) but skill trumps it.

@darkson said in You have to love random this much??:

@hotdogchef said in You have to love random this much??:

The main thing you can do to get a high winrate is to play at correct time of the day/night... with a race with best potential and reroll until you get key skills/abilities early as possible...

Which might be true if the consistent top Table Top players could do, but they can't.
Maybe those things have a small effect on online play (I say maybe, you've yet to give any proof) but skill trumps it.

Huh? I never denied, and not in my posts here either, that skill is very important in this game. I even started the topic with this. I am talking mostly about the online qualifiers for Blood bowl 2 seasons. I expect at least the ability to read before you post replies.

Again, If two guys equal skilled play vs each other... There is so many random events and rolls that can give one of them big advantages. In Chess if you get 1 pawn/piece lead... it's often enough to win if players are equal skilled. One mistake is enough to lose in many games.

The highly random advantages in Blood bowl is not 1 pawn more, the advantages are much much larger. Common, we all know this.

Still remembering the rat guy I played vs, he made 5 injuries on my team the first 5 turns. Two of them just in the first blocks. Double 1, failed reroll, he injured two more players the next turn. You think the best Blood bowl player in the world would have made it? Humping around with 6 players left to stop the gutter runners? Sure, of course... guess how many players left before the half was finished?? His two dirty players kept fouling every downed guy. Ah but master would have won yes?? You seem like a smart guy...

last edited by Hotdogchef

Saltiest game on earth 🙂

I don't agree on kickoff events.

I like the kickoff events, as they really add spice to the game and force you to adjust your play.

Sure, adjusting your play to counter sweltering heat is kinda hard, but being aware you might get a perfect defense or blitz against you forces you to adjust your setups (unless you want to gamble), getting your key catcher down by a rock forces you to reevaluate your tactics for the drive etc.

I do think many of them are too powerful and should be adjusted. You could cap the amount players affected, only allow X players move during a blitz, don't allow cas from kickoff event etc

I do however agree that early removals is really boring and easily lead to a downward spiral. Something like two-turn stuns in between stun and KO could perhaps ease things a bit without being too nice to the agi-teams... but it would probably screw up the balance in one way or another and it's not like they are gonna implement such a big change in the game anyway 🙂

Playing without the kickoff table would suck the soul out of the game. It's bad enough that Cyanide haven't been able to add special play cards as yet.

Comparison with Bridge is problematic - that's a team game, not a solo one, and card random is NOT the same as dice random.

Blood Bowl's roots are in wargaming. It's better to compare it with Warhammer, Flames of War or Bolt Action. And to a degree with real team sports.

@mrinku said in You have to love random this much??:

Playing without the kickoff table would suck the soul out of the game. It's bad enough that Cyanide haven't been able to add special play cards as yet.

Comparison with Bridge is problematic - that's a team game, not a solo one, and card random is NOT the same as dice random.

Blood Bowl's roots are in wargaming. It's better to compare it with Warhammer, Flames of War or Bolt Action. And to a degree with real team sports.

Suck soul out of the game? So the soul of the game is that anybody can beat anybody on just total random?

Again today, kick off event, 1 goal down. Trying to equal score. Rain, 4 guys of my stunned in the kick off event... non of the opponent. Both the guys that was ready to pick up ball stunned. The Britonnian player had injured 1 and killed 2 of my Dark elf blitzers (yes 2). I understand that people go, nuffle did not go your way today.... ehhh no, why can't tournaments not be riddled with totally uncessary random shit?? I try to play my best and get a good record, then suddenly game decides just to kill my team, and kick off events randomly destroy my record! Yeah, wow that's hilarious!!!! NO its total retard. A game for retards...

last edited by Hotdogchef

If you don't like it you have several options, including creating a league with your own preferences and simply not playing.

@dode74 said in You have to love random this much??:

If you don't like it you have several options, including creating a league with your own preferences and simply not playing.

Nope, it's now included in the game to turn off kick off events, and this should be done with the "serious" pricepool tournament. Keep "the happy go lucky, anybody can win stuff" for the other tournaments.

Or make a hybrid, with some kick off events changed or removed for more serious play.

When players down and getting 4 players randomly stunned in a critical part of match is a joke. At least change it so both players suffer equal number of stuns. And why do a player that are down under in scores get 4 stun vs non? It's not even given as a handicap to being down.

Or... just remove pitch invasion. It's the totally unfair and you can't prepare for it +++ it's just really really bad!

last edited by Hotdogchef

this should be done with the "serious" pricepool tournament

What should and should not be done is down to the tournament organizers, not you. The fact is that if the tournament organizers are content with KO events being in (and nothing suggests otherwise) then the options I have outlined are the ones you have.

Dark elves just got 2 bonus turns vs me last game and won the game because of it.

It's the bonus turns (specially for fast teams) and Pitch invasions that are the worst kick off events. One of the main reasons I lose or draw games now. Just really annoying!

@hotdogchef said in You have to love random this much??:

Dark elves just got 2 bonus turns vs me last game and won the game because of it.

It's the bonus turns (specially for fast teams) and Pitch invasions that are the worst kick off events. One of the main reasons I lose or draw games now. Just really annoying!

And what do you think abou the weather? It can be far more devastating for some teams than a pitch invasion.

last edited by Arne

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