Play involves placing your players on the field in offensive or defensive rounds. You then take turns to move, attack, dodge, block, throw and catch. Whether you're successful at each action is determined by your player's stats and a dice roll.
As play progresses you need to carefully choose the order of actions, as one failed move results in a turnover and play going to the other side. As you get to grips with the action you can add in new aspects such as the crowd and other elements affecting play on the pitch.
How you play is determined in part by your team. In the box, you get Humans and Orcs but can also purchase a range of other races to play with. Stronger teams opt for more fighting while faster, lighter teams run and throw the ball.
What results is a finely honed game. It's been around for many years, and the latest edition of the rules has come from years of development. The history brings with it the tradition of painting miniature plastic player figures as with tabletop war games Warhammer and 40k, also from Games Workshop.
Our examiner, Andy Robertson, first checked Blood Bowl 23 months ago. It was re-examined by Ellen Robertson and updated 4 days ago.
The first time you play, the following helps you learn things:
- Run through the rules for blocking, dodging, throwing and catching before you start a game.
- See how the different players' stats affect these rules and required rolls.
- Play one round with one person assisting the players with the rules.
- Don't introduce special player or crowd rules until you have the basics down.
Play Time: This game will take between 45 minutes and 1 hour and 20 minutes to complete. It's not a fast game, although it is possible for some rounds to be won quickly. Because of this, you should allow over an hour to play.
This game is good if you want to:
11+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. Still, it's important for parents and guardians to consider the maturity required to process the game content. Because of the complexity of the rules, older children with patience, attention to detail and forward planning will enjoy the game. You need to be willing for plans to be foiled by bad dice rolls. Also, a desire to paint the figures adds considerable enjoyment.