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 Post subject: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 12:28 am 
Legend
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Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 3:02 am
Posts: 3372
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Hi all. Long time no see. This last weekend saw me at the 3rd CAS (Capital Shield) in Wellington, New Zealand. A very sociable and beer-filled tournament.

The rules were TV110 plus SPP package, handicapped according to 2015 tourney rankings and also I think slightly by popularity. This looked to favour the Slann a bit, so I rocked up with one of my favourite teams, Pond Scum:

4 Catchers (Dodge+Guard, Dodge, -, -)
8 Linefrogs (4xWrestle)
5 RR
Apoth

Close to my perfect tournament roster (I would prefer 2xGuard, lol, but Dodge+Guard is quite good). 4xWrestle was a great luxury.

1st GAME: Beat Vampires 2-1 (CAS: 3-3). Received and scored. Got 2 excellent scoring chances on defense, both failed, but at least I got a shutout. HT:1-0. 2nd half: got 6 dice of sacks on the ball carrier, all failed. He had to score, then I managed to score on offense. A turn 16 scoring attempt (by me) failed (GFI: 1,1). At least 3 successful sacks during the match, but none converted into a score.

2nd GAME: Beat Pro-Elves 2-1 (CAS: 3-1). Kicked, failed to turn him over, he scored. With 5 turns to score on offense (and the ball in the hands of a rookie Linefrog), I struggled, due to the presence of Eldril. Eventually I lost my rag and took a risky surf attempt on him, it worked and he was CASd. The ball carrier was exposed, but I managed not to lose it. As my numbers advantage was increasing, I stalled and scored on turn 8. HT:1-1. Starting the 2nd half up 11 players to 8, I decided to stall, and managed to do so (not without mishap, i.e. sacks) for the win.

Note: this was the first time I have ever successfully stalled with Slann in any form of BB, and I managed to do it for 13 turns.

3rd GAME: Lost 1-3 to High Elves (CAS: 0-5). Whole match was in a blizzard, not good for Slann. Received, and my first D6 sequence of the match was: 2,1,2,1,1. This was one of my better dice sequences of the match, believe me. He got a turnover score. HT:0-1. Lost count of the double 1s I rolled. My TD was a consolation score at the end. Also my team was decimated, my opponent blocked well. I remember an attempted B/S pass into space which would likely have got me a turnover score (it failed).

4th GAME: Drew 2-2 with High Elves (CAS: 3-3). Received and scored, he scored back in return. HT:1-1. I sacked my opponent 3 times during the match, but each time I failed to get the ball away. Just when things were looking good, and I was all over the HEs like a bad rash, my opponent rolled 4 blocks and got 4 stuns. Eventually he scored what looked like the winner on turn 16. However, I got a riot, and managed an improbable "one-turner". No RR available. One of the jammiest TDs I have ever scored in a tournament. This was the 3rd riot of the match.

NOTE: I would point out that in the first 4 games I had not made a single turnover score (the normal stock-in-trade of Slann).

5th GAME: Beat Nurgle 2-1 (CAS: 0-2). Received, he got a Perfect Defense (a nightmare for me). I then rolled 1,3, skull, skull for a turnover. My deperate attempt on turn 2 to make a B/S pass into space failed when I rolled 1,1. The result was a turnover score to my opponent. However, I did just enough by pushing the opposing ball carrier into the End Zone on turn 6. This left me 2 turns to score on offense, which I improbably did (no RRs left IIRC). HT:1-1. In the 2nd half, I got a Blitz!, caught the ball, got sacked, a scramble ensued. I got the ball back, made another B/S pass to near the End Zone, I had been too greedy with the placement, the ball went out of bounds and scattered back. Another scramble ensued, with the Beast near the action. A jammy little Dodge Catcher escaped the Beast's Tentacles (9+) and ran the ball in for the winning TD. A tense 3 turn shutout followed (I sacked my opponent, but the ball scattered into the arms of a waiting Pestigor, I sacked him again on the last turn, my opponent couldn't quite manage to get at the loose ball on the last turn).

NOTE: Game 5 saw the first turnover score by the Slann in the tournament, which was far from orthodox (not to say jammy).

6th and last GAME: Beat Dark Elves 3-1 (CAS: 0-1). Received, scored in 3 turns IIRC. My opponent tried to stall, but eventually had to give this up (I think I sacked him a couple of times) and I "forced" him to score on turn 6. This was just enough for me to get a jammy 2-turn score on offense (1D blitz, pass to a Linefrog, hand-off to another Linefrog in a TZ, leap and GFI to the End Zone). HT:2-1. In the second half my opponent tried again to stall, but yet again I kept sacking him, so eventually he decided to score, passing to a Witch Elf in the End Zone. However, the Froggies' jam was still working, as she rolled a 1 and dropped the ball, it scattered back, and I had just enough movement to get the ball and pass it upfield to the waiting receiver and score.

NOTE: Game 6 saw only my second turnover score of the tournament. Even this one was not orthodox, as it came from a dropped catch rather than a sack. Note that the patiently waiting receiver had been waiting in the same spot (middle of the opponent's half) for 5 3/4 matches before receiving his only pass.

So, i had had a decent tournament, thanks to a combination of unorthodox (for Slann) play (e.g. stalling) and jam. The main thing I did right was to force my opponents to score when I could, allowing me a 2-turn score in reply (this happened twice, on one of these occasions I pushed my opponent into the end zone, it is the first time that trick has worked for me in a tourney - I rarely try it). Also, I hung in there in the (many) games when things were going pear-shaped, most games went to the death. You need a strong stomach to play Slann, they can roll a lot of "bad dice", you have to just suck it up and carry on regardless.

Imagine my surprise when I was handed the "calligraphy" (I get asked to write the names on winners certificates) to find that I had won the tournament! 4 wins, 1 draw (thanks to a riot) and 1 loss is not a great score (I have had 5 wins and 1 loss and come 3rd before), but it was enough this time. 2 coaches had finished on 3 wins and 3 draws, but a win and a loss counted for more than 2 draws, so I beat them fair and square (although I never played them!). I think there must have been a draw at the top table in the last round. Note that I would have easily lost any form of tie-break

NOTE: I played 4 out of 5 Elven teams at the tournament, and 5 of my 6 opponents were AG4 teams. Very hard work for Slann, they prefer easy meat like Orcs etc.

All the best.

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 Post subject:
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 5:49 am 
Legend
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Won a tournament without ever sitting at the top table. You weren't the only person there stunned ;)

Great work Paul, glad you enjoyed yourself! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 09, 2016 8:09 am 
Super Star
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4/1/1 with Slanns, when facing 4 elves ! that's a great result!
Congrats.

how many participants at this tourney?

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:25 am 
Legend
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Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 3:02 am
Posts: 3372
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Thanks for your kind words.

There were 18 coaches at the tourney, that is about normal for any of the 3 main NZ tourneys, which range typically from about 18 to about 22 at the moment, IIRC.

Never have I had to work so hard with Slann. I nearly went 2/2/2, but for 2 tiny defensive inaccuracies by opponents and of course the riot gifting me a TD. (No doubt I made many errors too, but they are lost in the warm glow.) It really shows that you must never give up trying in any tournament match, and you have to maintain this mentality through all of the 6 games. It requires a fighting mentality. IIRC, 2 matches were decided by about turn 13 (1 win, 1 loss), but the 4 other matches went right to the death. Probably a record in that respect for any tourney I have played in.

It is a characteristic of Slann that they fight right to the end, regardless (for example) of how many players they have lost. I remember a match (I lost, but it doesn't matter) where I had only 2 players left on the pitch, one of whom was stunned IIRC, but I still managed to get a sack attempt on my opponent on turn 16 for a possible (if unlikely) draw.

Another characteristic of Slann is that every now and again they will roll really "bad" dice, With no starting Block, Dodge, Sure Hands, they have to make a lot of successful 2+ and 3+ die-roll sequences in order to do anything worthwhile. While I am prepared for that, it happened quite a bit more frequently than the "actuarial" in this tourney. For example, I would sack my opponent 3 times for no return. This made things even sweeter.

All the best.

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 Post subject: Re:
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:48 am 
Legend
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Posts: 3372
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Shteve0 wrote:
Won a tournament without ever sitting at the top table. You weren't the only person there stunned ;)

These things are very curious when they happen, I've been on the "receiving end" before now. I had been paying no attention whatsoever to the standings of other players. This probably helped me more than a little, as it meant a clear head (at least a clear head plus a lot of beer), I just concentrated on the match in hand.

In retrospect I think any of the top 4 players going into the last round could have won. I like that when it happens. In this case it was due to a huge amount of draws at top tables.

I feel a little sorry for Tim Owens, the only player who beat me (he was so happy, only his 3rd win against me, and the 1st in a tourney). He deserved a podium finish, but came 4th. If the top table had produced a win/loss in the last round, Tim would have come 3rd (and I would have come 2nd). By beating me, Tim enabled me to do a "mini-submarine". A draw at my table in the last round would also have seen Tim on the podium, I think. Such is tournament life.

All the best.

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 5:59 am 
Legend
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Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 3:02 am
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Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Interesting that HEs were my nemesis in this tournament, a loss and a draw (which would have been a loss but for the turn 16 riot).

DEs are hard opponents, but I think AV8 + ball moving skills (HEs) is harder for Slann to beat.

As for PEs, the AV difference gave me the advantage.

The other AG4 team (Vamps) was also far from easy. Again, the squishy thralls (including several bites) gave me the advantage.

All the best.

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 7:23 am 
Super Star
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Quote:
There were 18 coaches at the tourney

6 rounds for 18 coachs only. It's a lot actually :)
so, i'm not surprize to see a tourney winner with a 4/1/1 :)
Quote:
Won a tournament without ever sitting at the top table
that's the typical submarine strategy!
loss the 1st first game to get much easier draw during whole tourney :smoking:

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 9:30 pm 
Experienced
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Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:15 am
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Location: Cologne, Germany
Imho the 3 blitzer 4 catcher 4 linefrog 3 rr setup is a little bit stronger than yours (I see no real sense of the kroxi in a slann team, too but 5rr is overkill isn't it? ) but Gratulations - well done ! Still Slann is tough to play and tougher to play against.


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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 3:06 am 
Legend
Legend

Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2002 3:02 am
Posts: 3372
Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Arioso - I am very content with 5 RRs. It suits my style of play, which is a relentless attack on the ball. There were many, many occasions (more or less every match) when 4 RRs would not have been enough. It is unlikely that I woud have won this tourney with 4 RRs - I would likely have gone 2/2/2 or worse. The ideal situation is to reach turn 7 of the half with 2 RRs in hand, and your opponent has none, then anything becomes possible for Slann. I did this rarely, but there were quite a few occasions when I reached turn 7 with 1 RR left.

Slann roster building is a very simple exercise for me. Firstly you need either 13 players or 12 players and an Apoth. Secondly you must take all 4 Catchers (they are squishy, and it is hard to score unless you have at least 3 of them on the pitch, whether on offense or defense). Thirdly you need as many RRs as you can reasonably get (there is no re-roll skill for Leap). Fourthly a Linefrog + RR is worth quite a bit more than a Blitzer. And fifthly, the Krox is poor value (he costs the same as a Catcher + a Linefrog).

By good fortune, TV110 fits these parameters exactly.

Another perspective is that the Blitzers and the Krox have excellent skills (I like them both in isolation), but these skills are all defensive (with the possible exception of Jump Up), and do not match the ball-hunting style of the team. And the Blitzers start with a skill deficit compared to most Blitzers in the game (i.e. no starting Block).

I might consider a Blitzer at TV115 or higher, a Krox at TV118 or higher, I don't know.

Hope that helps.

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 8:38 am 
Star Player
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I think it comes down to how often you leap, imho.

In this build
Arioso wrote:
Imho the 3 blitzer 4 catcher 4 linefrog 3 rr setup


it's not your plan A and you play the team differently.
I'd say, that the team would be played more like a dark elf team, so very defensive.
You're not trying to force the ball lose, but rather just stop your opponent from scoring in his/her drive.

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu Mar 17, 2016 11:39 pm 
Veteran
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Congrats on your victory, it's impressive and rather instructive for new slann coaches.

Most tournaments around allow a 1050 TV, and allow a double skill for slanns, no more.

Would you consider a single blitzer, so you can access 2 guarders (blitzer and catcher)?

I'm considering the following:

4 RR 200
4 catchers 320
1 blitzer 110
7 linos 420

Maybe the blitzer is too expensive, but i can have 2 guarders, 2 dodgers (catchers) and 2 wrestlers (usually, 6 skills allowed).

How does it sound for you, considering the tournament restrictions?


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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2016 11:55 pm 
Legend
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Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
ulvardar - sorry fo my late reply.

I would drop the Blitzer for a Linefrog and Apoth. In my experience, you need those 12 players plus Apoth if you want to last to the end (or even get to the second half against a well-organised bash team).

I would take an extra Wrestle in place of the foregone Guard.

Hope that helps.

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Wed May 11, 2016 8:42 am 
Rookie
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Apologies for the minor case of threadomancy.

Congrats on a job well done.

My query is only as to whether you made any rules for the Apoth? Such as only looking after the catchers?

Go Frogs!

:orc:

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 Post subject: Re: Naughty Frogs get it all wrong but get there on pure jam
 Post Posted: Thu May 12, 2016 7:19 am 
Super Star
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ulvardar wrote:
Congrats on your victory, it's impressive and rather instructive for new slann coaches.

Most tournaments around allow a 1050 TV, and allow a double skill for slanns, no more.

Would you consider a single blitzer, so you can access 2 guarders (blitzer and catcher)?

I'm considering the following:

4 RR 200
4 catchers 320
1 blitzer 110
7 linos 420

Maybe the blitzer is too expensive, but i can have 2 guarders, 2 dodgers (catchers) and 2 wrestlers (usually, 6 skills allowed).

How does it sound for you, considering the tournament restrictions?

could you stack skill?
if no, i think the blitzer is too much expensive for his starting cost (it's definitly not a tourney positionnal, but a player made for very long term / perpetuel leagues, thanks to his lovely access to GAS on simple)
Like Smeborg, i think an apo+lineman is a much better deal in tourney.

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