The Date – 02 August 2014
The Location – Towy Valley Tyrants GCN Club, Carmarthen, South Wales
The Event – The Inaugural TYRANT BOWL 2014 Dreadball Tournament
After weeks of rulespack tweaks, advice and nervous nights wondering if any tickets would sell the day had finally arrived and I was about to run my first Dreadball Tournament as a Pathfinder. I’m Tris Moran and this is an account of my day.
I was wearing my Pathfinder attire; the tables were up; the paperwork was ready; the laptop was running; the prizes were sorted (thanks to Mark Wallace for arranging some great stuff out of the Warehouse); the first place trophy I had bought had arrived; the coffee and nibbles were ready and lunch had even been pre-ordered…..what was I missing?
The 18 players!!!
Now South Wales has a thriving gaming scene, but we are kind of spread out (I blame the geography), my aim had been to try and pull in players from as many of the “local” gaming clubs as I could and the community did not let me down. I had not only got players coming from Carmarthen and Swansea (local as it’s only 35 miles away), but also from Mid Wales Wargaming Society in Builth Wells (50 miles), Crow Valley Crusaders in Cwmbran (80 miles) and even 4 great guys from Bristol Vanguard (over 100 miles).
The stage was set for 5 rounds over the day, four of standard Dreadball and one final 6 player game of Dreadball Ultimate. I was even trying out using just the Weather Rules (rolled at a unspecified points) from Azure Forest during the first four rounds.
I’ve pulled out a few highlights from over the day:
Round 1 had a match-up between The Dandies Inc. Corporation Team and the Asterian What Are We Doing Here? Team, in the first rush the Asterians lived up to their (well deserved) reputation for cheating and both of the Guards used Dirty Tricks and managed to get both of The Dandies Guards sent off, one for 3 rounds and the other ended up taking an early shower!! Somehow The Dandies managed to claw back a 5 point deficit to scrape an honourable Draw.
There was also a nasty moment for the T.V.T Judwan Team (I can’t publish the full team name) in their match against the mighty Z’Zorlanders when they had NO PLAYERS on the pitch!!
Draws are quite unusual in Dreadball, but we had 2 from 9 games in this round. However the early morning bought on by travel must have been having an impact as we also had 3 landslides too. The early lead was taken by Coach Andy Wells from MWWS and his Voidtek 69ers Corporation boys.
Round 2 saw things change for the sneaky What Are We Doing Here? Team as the battles another Corporation Team. This time however the Corporation Strikers were on better form and managed to evade a slam only to pick up a loose ball and score in the Asterian second rush.
Three teams managed to secure another win, where as there were four that had doubled down on a loss. Three teams on maximum Tournament points separated by theirs score difference.
Round 3 had one of the BEST dice offs that I’ve heard of. The Z’Zorlanders were pitched against The Woolwich Armours Corporation that would result in an eventual landslide in the Z’Zor’s favour, BUT during the match Aphid the huge Z’Zor Guard slammed into an unlucky Corporation Guard and rolled up a MASSIVE 10 successes, an instant kill you’d have thought, but 7 armour checks (including 6 6’s) later the Guard was just dazed for three rounds.
End of round three saw The Voidtek 69ers the only team with three wins and they were clear at the top of the table, two teams propped up the foot of the table with not a win between them.
Round 4’s highlight was similar to happened against the Asterians in Round 2, but it was even more highly applauded and was sweet payback for anyone who had ever (before Digby incrsed the launch speed of the ball) had Judwan pick up a ball and score in their turn! The matchup was between the Seafood Scourge Nameless and SMiLEX – Harley Quinns Judwan and it was the first action of the game. A doubled dodge against the Feint saw one Nameless Striker move onto the launched ball, double the catch and move down to make a single point score, this set the tone for the match and the Seafood Win by a landslide in the last rush.
The standings after Round 4 would determine who was playing on which Ultimate Table in the 5th and final round. After all the results had been logged it became apparent that The Voidtek 69ers had been narrowly (by 1 point) been beaten by The Z’Zorlanders (who were now the clear leader) into third place behind The Seafood Scourge. As an aside note The Z’Zorlanders managed to amass 24 cheers in their match too (helped by the Hot and Bothered Weather result giving a fan check for every Slam attempt).
Round 5 was the Ultimate Matchup (in more ways than one). Analysis of the results to this stage showed that the winner would come from the top table, but that anyone could take the win. However depending on the results from the top table five out of the six Teams on the middle table COULD if the planets aligned correctly jump in and take second place.
As with any 6 player game of Ultimate, there was carnage, alliances, back-stabbing and ganging up on one team as they gained an advantage on each of the three pitches.
Top Table had; Z’Zor, Nameless, two Corporation, Judwan and Teratons. Result was AN OVERALL DRAW, almost a win for The Seafood Scourge Nameless and Eridani Majestics Juwan Teams.
Second Table had; Judwan, Asterian, Veer-myn, two Corporation and Robots. Result was a LANDSLIDE WIN for The Rat Pack-ed Lunches Veer-myn Team.
Third Table had; Corporation, two Judwan, Robots, Marauder and Forge Fathers. Result was a LANDSLIDE WIN for Omega Reds Corporation Team.
While the players and coaches sat around in nervous anticipation I entered the final results into the score tracker…and then made coffee much to everyone’s annoyance.
The presentation of awards were met with resounding cheers and applause for everyone as the sportsmanship that had been evident during the day (I’d seen multiple times when “take-backs” were asked for and given) continued to the very end.
Final Results were:
Overall Win for fellow Pathfinder and Treasurer of Bristol Vanguard Liam Hall and his Z’Zorlander Team
Second Place went to TVT Treasurer Lawrence York and his Seafood Scourge Nameless Team
Third spot went to Mid Wales Wargaming Society Chairman (and leader until the end of Round 4) Andy Wells and his Voidtek 69ers Corporation Team
Bloodiest Team went to CJ Addison and his brutal New Inland Patriorx Marauder Team with 8 “Kills” during the event.
Best Painted Team was very close with one Team on 6 Votes and one on 7. The award went to Lawrence’s Seafood Scourge with CJ’s New Inland Patriorx a close runner-up.
The hotly contested Wooden Spoon eventually went to Phil Brown who after the Ultimate game was the clear “winner”.
Final results snapshot:
In closing I would like to say that I am calling my first Tournament a success, there are a few tweaks that I’ll make to the format next time, but the feedback gained on the day during and post event was positive and those that had travelled some considerable distance to attend all said that it was a worthwhile trip. I was surprised how much it took out of me NOT playing and now have a greater respect for tournament organisers throughout the galaxy. That said I thoroughly enjoyed the day and am looking forward to running future Events and Tournaments.