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 Post subject: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournaments
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:01 pm 
Experienced
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I was wondering what are the most common mistakes in (tournament) blood bowl plays some players do (and some don't do).

I think of myself being a decent bb player, playing for 15 years now, i won some NAF tournaments, and do have a positive match report when looking at all of my over 100 tournament games in the last 2 years. But i see a difference in being decent and being one of the top players (in the NAF-Rankings for example). I took a look at the naf statistic and saw interesting things. Some of the players simply don't lose their games nevertheless how bad their dices are.

Sounds like a obvious answer i know but then i wondered what they do to achieve this. I mean all of us know the games where the dice simply don't work and everything goes wrong but still some people manage to not lose their games then (going for a draw or even for a win with bad dice).

so the question got me where do i have to get better to climb in the rankings, what are they doing, what i don't know to do

i try to do the obvious things (planning ahead, thinking of each move how my team would stand if i fail a roll or get a turnover) - maybe -as always- there are some more talented guys then me in doing these things and seeing better plays than i see in a certain situation (i am sure there are :)) - but i really like to get your thought about the specific tactics/setups/things you do while you play, which made you better (more succesful?) players. Or is it just this - to see the "even better" play in a certain situation.

Perhaps there are just small hints (maybe there are typical situations in a match (when to decide to be satisfied with a draw and when to go for risk and try to win even if the opponent gets the ball for example) and i know there are some teams which are more forgiving than others are - or is it just pure luck some players have and some don't.

I don't think there is a super-duper secret to know, but i'd really like your opinions on this - what does it take to get from decent to very good in tournament play. How do i get from about 3-2-1 to 5-1-0 not just in one lucky tournament but more constantly.

Any ideas? :)


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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:55 pm 
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If I may be so bold. :wink:

Mostly it is just practice. Blood Bowl is a game of pattern recognition. "I've seen this situation x number of times before, and this is the best option". There are too many specifics to really discuss in text. But to add some vague concepts :

First up, accept you can learn. I see a lot of coaches who have been the best player in their local league come into tournaments (or FUMBBL) thinking they are a 'good coach'. Some of them don't get past this and don't feel the need to learn from games, just blaming luck. These guys don't get better. I've seen other once-great coaches say they never mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes. Look for yours during your opponent's turn, even if you are in a good position. Chances are you could have done something ever so slightly better.

The most obvious thing I would say that separates the great coach from the good is the ability to 'change it up'. When you first get good you often play in a set way, and if luck goes against you then you may continue to play in that way in the hope that luck changes. The best coaches spot early that the time has come to adopt plan B. Go from cautious to hyper-aggressive (or vice versa) at the right time. Not too soon, and not too early.

Also, play to your opponent if you know them. If I am playing a coach I know is good, I'll take on more risks, not fewer. A 50/50 shot on the ball against a weak coach isn't that valuable, as you might get a better one next turn. But against someone great it might be the only chance you ever get. So play the dice. Against a bad coach remove the element of luck, against a good coach introduce it much earlier.

Also, never say "I just need to kill a few players". That is just rolling dice and hoping. Control the controllable (position).

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 6:16 pm 
Kommissar Enthusiasmoff
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Play lots. Then play some more. And all of what Joe said.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 6:41 pm 
Super Star
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Joemanji wrote:
Also, never say "I just need to kill a few players". That is just rolling dice and hoping. Control the controllable (position).

Killing a few players can help a lot the positional game and pitch control, although in tournaments it's hard to kill stuff given the lack of clawpomb and pomb.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 7:07 pm 
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You cannot rely on killing players. Some are a safer bet. Snots spring to mind. A strategy based on carnage is not a plan it's a hope. You can plan to put in screens an cages etc.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Mon Oct 13, 2014 8:46 pm 
Legend
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Play scrunts or fairies, and nail the basics... if you are merely lame, or better, the rest is out-dicing your opponent (made insanely easier by playing scrunts/fairies).... Viola....

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 5:11 pm 
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Joemanji wrote:
Mostly it is just practice. Blood Bowl is a game of pattern recognition. "I've seen this situation x number of times before, and this is the best option. (...) The most obvious thing I would say that separates the great coach from the good is the ability to 'change it up'. When you first get good you often play in a set way, and if luck goes against you then you may continue to play in that way in the hope that luck changes. The best coaches spot early that the time has come to adopt plan B. Go from cautious to hyper-aggressive (or vice versa) at the right time. Not too soon, and not too early.


Thats the thing i initially had in mind. Those "Patterns". As you say i think when playing a lot you see similar situations some time (more less than supposed i must admit, at least that is my feeling of it). For example. You want to 2-score with your WE-Team. Blockings doesn't go in your favor, every player is tackled. How do you adapt. Its these "what is plan b"-examples that i am interested of. Do you change during a turn? After a turn? What if sometimes the important things in a turn can't be done first...and another thing goes on earlier. If you used your Re-Roll do you GFI if it was your initial plan? (just another example)

Joemanji wrote:
Also, never say "I just need to kill a few players". That is just rolling dice and hoping. Control the controllable (position).


That, as simple as it sounds is a very important sentence, i must admit. Does this stand above makeing a td for you? For example - To stay controlled even if it makes you go for 0:0 when recieving.
I always play - "when in doubt, go for it". You imply that this isn't the best thing to do. Better have control and waste a chance for a td, which can fail? (i know this depends on a situation/opponent/state of game - but that's what i initially was asking for - some general ideas).

sann0638 wrote:
Play lots. Then play some more.


Not sure that this is all it needs to. As i said i play a lot (merely a game a day). I win more than i lose with most races (in league, in tournaments). But i still do lose some games better player obviously have different tactical approaches when playing than me. They don't lose (assuming they have the same amount of good/bad dice than me). So i think its maybe more about pattern and tactic (which sure belongs to experience, to have seen them before). Of course there is always someone better. You can learn something new in any game.

Those patterns and tactics are the things i am interested in. Not sure if playing more (usually against your pool of friends at fumbble oder online or the table) will really help with this as you adapt fast to the playstyle of the people you know.

MattDakka wrote:
Killing a few players can help a lot the positional game and pitch control, although in tournaments it's hard to kill stuff given the lack of clawpomb and pomb.


At least here in germany there is usual 1-2 Teams with clawpomb on the tournaments i visit, none of them i have ever seen winning a tournament because there will be those 1 or 2 matches where you can't get the players from the pitch. They do decent - but as joe said, relying on this is relying on dice, which i want to do less.

Digger Goreman wrote:
Play scrunts or fairies, and nail the basics... if you are merely lame, or better, the rest is out-dicing your opponent (made insanely easier by playing scrunts/fairies).... Viola....


Give faerie-roster! I am lame, i want to win without out-dicing my opponent :)


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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 7:38 pm 
Super Star
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Arioso wrote:
At least here in germany there is usual 1-2 Teams with clawpomb on the tournaments i visit, none of them i have ever seen winning a tournament because there will be those 1 or 2 matches where you can't get the players from the pitch. They do decent - but as joe said, relying on this is relying on dice, which i want to do less.

I never said to rely just on killing players, I meant to say that killing players helps the positional game, because your opponent can't attack/defend properly if he has few players left and you can attack/defend better if you have more players.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 14, 2014 9:36 pm 
Legend
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Arioso wrote:
Digger Goreman wrote:
Play scrunts or fairies, and nail the basics... if you are merely lame, or better, the rest is out-dicing your opponent (made insanely easier by playing scrunts/fairies).... Viola....


Give faerie-roster! I am lame, i want to win without out-dicing my opponent :)


Heh, heh, sorry, "fairies" are the elf teams in general....

I think you should consult Mattgslater.... I get lost in his "cult of positioning" articles but believe that the key resides in that Byzantine brain of his....

Unfortunately I'm serious about playing unbalanced teams at tournament: at the latest sNAFu chumpionship, the top 59 teams were not remotely balanced (the 60th team being only remotely balanced, i.e.; Orcs)....

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 15, 2014 12:31 am 
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Digger Goreman wrote:
Unfortunately I'm serious about playing unbalanced teams at tournament: at the latest sNAFu chumpionship, the top 59 teams were not remotely balanced (the 60th team being only remotely balanced, i.e.; Orcs)....


IMO this was a problem with the format - it is too restrictive so there are not many 'viable' rosters and so everyone takes Darkies or Lizardmen.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 15, 2014 4:35 am 
Legend
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Arioso - I would say the same sort of thing as Joemanji, but put it more simply: you have to decide at all times when to play more conservatively and when to take risks and go for the main chance. Typically you make this call at the beginning of your turn, but things may change during the turn as well. You need to start each drive with a good plan, but as in war, no plan survives contact with the enemy.

I still tend to make at least 1 outright blunder in each tournament. Minimising blunders is something you can work on, I believe. Someone once said of chess that the winner is he who makes the penultimate blunder. Interestingly, probably the best training I ever had for BB tournaments was playing in chess tournaments (not many, and mostly before I played BB). This is because chess demands a higher and more constant level of concentration than BB (you get to relax more during the opponent's turn in BB).

There is a strong psychological element in BB, as in chess. You need to play in an authoritative manner that maintains pressure on the opponent at all times. If you give up (mentally), or fail to press him, he will notice, and take advantage.

Playing practice games (or tourney games) with a chess clock is recommended, it sharpens your wits.

Hope that helps.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 15, 2014 5:34 am 
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Smeborg wrote:
There is a strong psychological element in BB, as in chess. You need to play in an authoritative manner that maintains pressure on the opponent at all times. If you give up (mentally), or fail to press him, he will notice, and take advantage.


Having played you in person, can I ask if your hang ups about dice being 'true' part of this? Also, you have a tendency not to announce squares you are counting for player movement or the ST+assist calculations for blocks prior to rolling, which I found unusual and a bit disconcerting. It certainly made me concentrate harder on your turns!

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 15, 2014 4:35 pm 
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Digger Goreman wrote:
Unfortunately I'm serious about playing unbalanced teams at tournament: at the latest sNAFu chumpionship, the top 59 teams were not remotely balanced (the 60th team being only remotely balanced, i.e.; Orcs)....


Someone must have missed the winners being Undead, along with 12th, 15th, 28th, 42nd... and the Necro in 26th and 53rd.... or do they count as stupid unbalanced timmy teams as well now? ( \o/ I finished 68th)

Smeborg wrote:
... Minimising blunders is something you can work on, I believe.


I think one thing that makes me play better, is to expect blunders, and minimise the effect - i.e. expect that things will go wrong, and always try to have some way of countering things if/when it does.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 3:09 am 
Legend
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Sandwich wrote:
Smeborg wrote:
... Minimising blunders is something you can work on, I believe.


I think one thing that makes me play better, is to expect blunders, and minimise the effect - i.e. expect that things will go wrong, and always try to have some way of countering things if/when it does.
Things go wrong, that's just dice. But when I use the word "blunder", it means I have done the wrong thing, not rolled "bad" dice.

All the best.

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 Post subject: Re: What is the secret being constantly succesful in tournam
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 16, 2014 3:30 am 
Legend
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Baloney Sandwich: Undead IS pretty Timmy, but you don't pay enough attention in your self-righteousness to consult my remarks in any complete context that don't serve said self-righteousness... must be in the water and air of your surroundings.... I wouldn't say the one's I missed (if your rants are right) constitute a resounding denial of the trend to maximize results with the inherent overt spam-vantages of dwelves, lizzies, et al the timmys....

Once a fruckin-gain, to fill the memory hole: I fell into playing Necro when it first came out because it was lauded as tier 1.5 and I wanted to play something challenging in a league I formed. Turns out it fits my play style, and I've stuck with it.... Undead, imo, should have been axed when the bbrc had a chance... but the Undead partisans were/are as timmy whiny as the dwelven gits.... Undead need to at least lose two ghouls and one mummy.... I play undead on occasion as they use much the same minis as my Necros.... Ditto Khemri which I still contend should have never seen the light of day... too untested, too one-dimensional, too much shoved out on jj's king's perogative....

Not that after almost 30 years of hard core gaming I need to justify myself to the likes of you....

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