Monday, February 22, 2010

Blood Bowl PC Game

So the Blood Bowl video game made it into retail channels in the states recently. I decided to pick it up for the PC. I had originally planned on getting it for my xbox 360 but I heard that the xbox 360 game did not support online leagues. While my 360 is not on live right now, I plan on getting it back to live at some point and leagues are the only way to really play blood bowl.

Now having it on PC presents some problems. My PC is perfectly able to run the game but my wife uses it most of the time for running her two blogs which are much bigger than mine so I can only use it at odd hours for gaming. I had actually not played a game on the pc since moving a few years ago.

I picked the game up a few weeks ago but finally actually got to play it this weekend since I was at Disney world the previous weekend. My first impression is that the AI is pretty weak. I have played about 6 matches so far (1 one off match with Chaos, and 5 campaign matches with Dark Elves) and I have won them all. The computer plays its team OK with trying to cage to protect the ball carrier and such but its biggest problem is that it does not change tactics when the end of the half or the game approaches. It seems to not really pay attention to the turn number like it should.

I have seen several games where it could have likely scored near the end of the half or game if it made a effort to make sure it was advancing the ball more. The AI will place deep receivers to throw passes to even with teams that do not really throw but it does not seem to make the effort in turn 6 for example to make sure it has people forward enough to score in the last two turns.

Another problem I saw was skill selection. Even for the preprogramed teams it seems like the skills were chosen more to show the possiabilities than to really make an optimal team. In one of my early campaign games I ran into a beastman with a prehensile tail as its first skill. Now there are way better skills than that for a chaos team that they really need.

The interface is a little funky also and I sometimes find myself thinking I have switched to a different player but actually still moving someone else or doing crazy things like dodging back and forth between squares because I used the wrong mouse click. Anyone out there know how to declare a blitz such that you hit the opponent as the first thing and then are free to determine you movement path after the hit?

I am still enjoying the game and would recommend it to people who know the board game. I skipped the tutorial so I do not know how it is for someone new to the boardgame.


  1. Any confirmation on the anti-online leagues deal on the 360? That's quite a bummer, and since I don't have a PC, it could even be a deal-breaker.

    Good to hear it's still pretty good. As long as it does a decent job of capturing the feel and flavor of the franchise, I'd be happy...well, that and online league play of course...

  2. I played in the beta for a week or so, and I thought it was great. I didn't play the AI though, I think it is meant more so for online use, BB is in fact a live head to head game after all :P I personally am not familiar with the BB rules, but I found it a fairly balanced and well made game. I would have liked an actual die rolling on the screen all the time, running down the field and falling flat on my face with no real reason except a line in the "combat log" saying I rolled a 1, wasn't exactly making me feel good.

    I think I was the loudest I've ever been playing that game, and that is definitely saying something. Even when losing I was dancing in my college house hallway when I got a touchdown, and screaming at my screen when I fumbled.

  3. No online leagues for Live is what the people at ZlurpeeBowl say. You can do one off matches on live but as off the current game no leagues. Maybe it will be made possible in the future but that fact has already hurt sales.

    I checkout out the tutorials for the pc verison today. Those are pretty useless. I really understand why I was getting so many hits for some of my blood bowl info back when this game was first release for digital download. The tutorials neither help explain the interface or really the rules very well. Most people do not want to sit down and read a 20 page book before playing a video game so I could see them having problems.