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BLOOD BOWL 2 from Focus IInteractive is a superbly constructed electronic version of Games Workshop's
fun-filled board game. There is no finesse in Blood Bowl though there is a fair amount of bluff and strategy.

This version truly brings many, if not all, of the Races created by Games Workshop (and others), beginning
with Humans and naturally including Orks and Skaven (I always have the desire to type Skraven whenever
Skaven are involved, must be the Londoner in me coming out).

 

If you are familiar with American Football you may well think that knowing the rules of the NFL will hold you
in good stead as Blood Bowl is obviously based loosely on American Football - extremely loosely based.

In the NFL you are expected to knock your opponent over.
In Blood Bowl you are expected to knock your opponent's head off!

 

You have the choice of playing Campaign or Exhibition games against real people, in a League or Single
game, or against the games Artificial Intelligence. Although "Intelligence" may not be a word oft bandied
about concerning Orcs or Skaven do not underestimate them. BLOOD BOWL 2 is actually a very clever
strategy and guess-work game.

 

When you first begin you choose teams according to their skills & abilities via a points basis. The teams
have points ranging from 1000 to 1600 and each Race can field a team of 1000, 1300 or 1600 points.

The 1000 point teams available are:
Albion Wanderers (Human)
Grudge Bearers (Dwarf)
Skirts Razerclaws  (Skaven)
Greenskin Gutrippers  (Orcs)
Marauding Mashers  (Chaos)
Lightning Hydras  (Dark Elf)
Drowned Sharks  (Undead)
Arctic Cragspider  (Norse)
Laurelorn Silverleaves  (High Elf)
Mad Dog Jets  (Necromatic)
Holy Revengers  (Bretonnian)

 

Examples of higher point teams are:
Human 1300  Creeveland Crescents
Dwarf 1300  Dwarf Anvils
Chaos 1600  Chaos All-Stars

 

Once you have set your players in the positions you believe best - you'll need to play a few games
before you get an understanding of placement - then whoever has won the toss of the coin kicks off.
The ball, complete with all the spikey bits Games Workshop are renowned for, is caught and the game
begins. In turn players move any/all of their players by selecting a route and clicking on the button
which pops up saying "OK". If you forget to do this, click on OK, then when you select to end your
turn nothing will happen. It is easy to forget to click on OK, believe me (I would insert a smiley face
emoji here if I knew how to do it in this program, so please take it as read - I'm smiling! )

 

When defending, you have to tackle the opposition character with the ball in an attempt to stop them
from advancing towards the Goal line and scoring a Touchdown; many of the NFL rules actually apply.
To do this you have to plot a route that will get you to where the opposing player is, or where they will
be moving to.

Opponent's blockers (players without the ball) will also move to prevent you preventing their ball carrier.
These blockers will react if your path takes you within their reach but trying to go round them may take
too long and may not even be possible.

When a Touchdown is scored the Cheerleaders come out onto the field and give an unparalleled display,
though as you can see from my screenshot the Cheerleaders are not Race dependent - the Dwarves had
just scored moments before this screenie was snapped.

BLOOD BOWL 2 is a good, rousing, triumph of football fun. Being an electronic game it doesn't have the
face to face atmosphere of the original board game but it more than makes up for this by allowing many
and varied views of the players and action as well as the beauty of the stadia filled with energetic fans.

Speaking of fane, if you enjoy the board game then there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn't enjoy
the game on the small screen. Even if you are not a Blood Bowl board game player or a fan of the actual
NFL as long as you like positive strategy games with a fair amount of thud and blunder this is for you.

If on the other hand you like painting water colours of dandelions and My Little Pony then you may have a
problem coming to grips with BLOOD BOWL 2, but then the name should have been enough of a warning
anyway - it is a bit of a give-away after all. (more smiley emojis)

 Blood Bowl 2 has many new features including a fully story-driven campaign which will help you get to grips with the game’s mechanics, as well as new AI for every team and all-new league features, so get your Blood Bowl mojo on!
Thanks to an entirely new graphics engine, Cyanide were able to visually push the boat out, with a total overhaul of animations, cinematics, and realization in general.  New tactical visual feedbacks, new team and stadium customizations and the introduction of Blood Bowl’s official broadcaster Cabalvision add atmosphere to the pitch.In the campaign, you’ll learn the basics of Blood Bowl 2 while you raise the Reikland Reavers through the ranks of Blood Bowl as the game gets progressively more challenging, and dynamic, scripted events occur mid-match.

Blood Bowl 2’s multiplayer modes have also been revamped. Along with offline face-offs and solo leagues where the challenge scales up to the player’s abilities, online play now allows them to fully customize their leagues, from qualifications to finals. These persistent tournaments come with a fresh-off-the-shelf Player Marketplace to trade Blood Bowl players and hopefully create the ultimate Dream Team. Owners beware as players can now retire from the game, given they do not die on the pitch before! This Blood Bowl season is now upon us as the 8 races get ready for kick-off. Buckle up!

Blood Bowl 2 is available today on PS4, Xbox One and PC.

You should visit the official website for more information: http://www.bloodbowl-game.com/

© Chris Baylis 2011-2015