Blood Bowl

6.5 Overall Score

Written by on March 14, 2010 in

Blood Bowl is a great example of a good concept with bad execution. First of all, the game is a brutal and parodied version of American football, based in the Warhammer universe. This game was originally a table top turn-based strategy game released in 1987 and this video game version is based on The Living Rulebook v. 5.0 of that table top game.

The game features 8 playable races: Humans, Orcs, Wood Elves, Dwarves, Skaven, Lizardmen, Chaos or Goblins. Each of these races have their different strengths or weaknesses, with Humans being the most balanced of them all, and Goblins, while they are the most inventive and wield interesting weapons, are extremely weak and only real veterans of the game should probably use them.

You can upgrade your player’s equipment to make them hit harder or defend themselves better against the opposition. The campaign mode allows you to compete in various championships that make up a season. The ultimate objective is to climb the ranking ladder and get to the top.

Blood Bowl sports two different modes of play: the authentic, turn-based experience. Or try your hand in the Real Time Mode.

The turn-based mode plays like it sounds. You set up your strategy before the opening kick off by placing your players where you want, and plan out your attack to move down the field, or to stop your opponent. You can systematically attempt to attack each of your opponent’s players and then try to move on down the field unimpeded, or you can risk going for the score quickly if your player’s agility to dodge tackles is high enough. The point, of course, is to score more touchdowns than your opponent, but you can attempt laying waste to the other team as you go along. If you do completely eliminate the other team, you win then, too.

The real time mode is a quick paced customizable mode that enables you to play on the fly and try to out-quick your opponent. If you get overwhelmed, it does have a type of pause function called “Concentration Mode”. This allows you to set up your players and get them ready to follow through with your demands. This can, at times, force you to be fairly predictive in what your opponent is going to do.

The game sounds like it might be an interesting variation from regular football. In reality, the turn-based, ‘chess that plays like football’ concept just falls a bit flat, at least in the video game version. Veterans of the board game that know the rules well should have no trouble picking up on the game. To the new players out there, unless you have extreme patience or have a lot of free time to deal with the steep learning curve and shallow tutorials it’s probably not a game for you. Simply put: Unless you’re a big Blood Bowl fan; you should pass on this.

Online leagues are PC only, and online play is scarce, in several attempts to play the game online I found nobody, and I know of no one that has the game to play against.

The graphics are just okay and don’t stand out as anything special. The menus are a bit clunky and I didn’t feel there was a good indication of what you were doing or where you could go.

In the end, Blood Bowl was just an okay game. The learning curve was frustrating and for a long time I didn’t understand why certain actions would happen to my players when there was no apparent reason for it. The game needs a deeper tutorial system for first time players. Blood Bowl just wasn’t that fun to play, and I’d really hoped that it would be.

A copy of this game was provided to TMG for the purposes of evaluation and review.

Married Gamers Rating: D+

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Author: Erik Johnsen View all posts by
A married gamer that spends time editing many of the articles you read right here at The Married Gamers. Erik sometimes reviews Xbox One games and writes articles, but spends his available free time from work or hanging out with his family hunting achievements for a higher gamerscore.

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