Pitch Protocols: Famous Formations—3 Pillars

Famous Formations: 3 Pillars

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The Sphyr have opted for a 3 Pillars formation. As the Visitors, they have opted for a more defensive arrangement, committing two players to a short-screen in the middle of their end of the pitch. Additionally, a second player has been tasked with guarding the 3/4 zone by taking up position on the bonus hex.

The 3 Pillars is a flexible formation that can be utilized by both offensive and defensive minded coaches. The Pillars refer to the players who take up position in the middle of each Strike Zone. Their purpose is to deny bonus point Strike opportunities, and in the hands of some teams, can even serve to frustrate regular Strikes as well. This allows some passive defense in each Strike Zone, and still leaves players free to take the match to the opposition. Like always, there are many variations, and you will usually see Pillars added to other formations to make full use of a teams roster and set-up.

Advantages

Having players in each scoring zone make its easier to respond to opposition threats on your end of the pitch. The Pillar players are able to be a little more active and responsive in your Rush due to this positioning. And, in a similar fashion to the Castle, if the opponent wishes for bonus points, they are going to have to expend actions to shift players. Depending on the match-up, this can be beneficial in and of itself.

Additionally, certain abilities make the formation even more potent. Extended Interference and Alert, for example, can give you the opportunity to not only deny bonus strikes, but threaten or disrupt regular ones as well. Other abilities like Keeper and Stench, can be used for similar effect.

Disadvantage

A formation like this again necessitates committing half of your team to your own side of the pitch. For some teams, this is not much of a draw back. However, if you depend on numbers or raw aggression for your plays to succeed, this can be a bit of a detriment. Additionally, it doesn’t really take that much to shift a single player. This is where careful consideration of the match-up at hand is required, to ensure placement of the right players for the job, or even changing formations all together.

Tournament Time / Rush Report: C-4 2018

The 2018 North American DreadBall Circuit’s C-4 is a wrap!

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DreadBall’s second edition presented an opportunity to retire the former Mid-Atlantic NADC event, and create something new.  And so the Martian sponsored District of Columbia DreadBall Cup is demoted to a “non-ranking tournament” while the Cocoa Castle Corporation Cup (C-4) emerges as the new DreadBall.com “DGB Regional Competition.”

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The NADC’s DC*DC / 2015 – 2017 / Blood was spilled

Those resilient Martians are a prickly bunch, and their return to hosting DreadBall tournaments will undoubtedly be filled with vengeance, mayhem, and slaughter.  There is speculation of a themed contest featuring an epic host finale for the top seed…

Konrad Castle’s Chocolate Empire had a humble debut on Sunday April 15, 2018.  Six Coaches brought the pain with a modified rule set* from the 2018 UK DreadBall Championship.  All participating coaches received a custom set of Home / Visitor cards as well as a Chocolate Castle delicacy.

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Delicacy may be a kind…

*No MVPs were allowed.

Veteran and rookie coaches rolled dice, and team captains made an appearance for three teams!  First introduced at Adepticon’s 2018 League in a Night competition (sponsored by the BreadDoll), the power and versatility of team captains is something to behold.  Their greatest attribute may be a matter of debate, but there’s no doubt: access to extra and unique cards, buffed stats, and assistant coach capabilities offer a lot.  However, those benefits do come at a high cost towards team construction.  Any team captain is going to have a mark on their back.  It’s a good thing tournaments have resurrection between rounds!

EDITOR’S NOTE: I feel access to additional cards are the Captains’ greatest strength.  While a TC’s cost may seem prohibitive, consider that two cards are worth 150mc.  With that calculation in mind, the most expensive TC seems more acceptable, and the least expensive is practically a bargain!  Beg to differ?  Let us know in the comments.

Coach / Team / Team Name / Tournament Points (TP) / Cheers / Serious Injuries / Record

  1. Geoff Burbidge / Tree Sharks / Planet X Mountain Tigers / 12 / 110 / 0 / 4-0
  2. Andrew Wodzianski / Void Sirens / C.U.N.T.S. / 9 / 32 / 1 / 3-1
  3. Brett Postal / Trontek 29ers / Mean Machine / 6 / 37 / 2 / 2-2
  4. Xanth Squires / Pelgar Mytics / ‘Judwan’ / 6 / 29 / 0 / 2-2
  5. Kevin Cornell / Trontek 29ers / Green Corp / 3 / 55 / 2 / 1-3
  6. Don Squires / Nemion Oceanics / ‘Sphyr’ / 0 / 13 / 0 / 0-4
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5th place and most violent – Kevin Cornell.
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Brett Postal in 3rd place, and the most sporting ( C-4 was his first tournament and he NEVER USED PROFANITY).
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Last place, and recipient of the delicious BreadDoll – Don Squires.
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Most Cheers, Best Painted, recipient of a BreadDoll dice set, AND consumer of the Chocolate Blaine Bar – 1st place Geoff Burbidge.
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This BreadDoll editor didn’t get a picture of himself with his 2nd place certificate, so here I am getting knocked around by Brett’s Lucky Logan.

Well played Coaches, and many thanks to DreadBall’s regional FLGS home; Victory Comics in Falls Church Virginia.

The BreadDoll’s next sponsored tournament is another DGB Regional Competition!  The NADC’s classic Origenes Cup will launch balls at 9am on Friday June 15, 2018 at the Origins Gaming Convention.  The BreadDoll hopes to see you there!

 

Tournament Time / Hobby Highlight: C-4 2018 & the BLAINE BAR

Sunday April 15, 2018.  Victory Comics.  Falls Church, Virginia.  United States of America. The North American DreadBall Circuit (NADC) sweeps through the region and offers four rounds of intense, intergalactic, competition.

It’s the Cocoa Castle Corporation Cup, or C-4 for short.  Of course there’s a backstory, and it should be consumed before the Blaine Bar tutorial below.

The story thus far:

In 896AE, Chief Culinary Specialist Konrad Castle was stationed aboard the CCS Dread. His delectable prowess caught the sweet tooth of then Captain Jesus Ortiz, who would often encounter the chef during late night pantry raids. While enjoying chocolate petit fours, Ortiz would solicit Kastle for advice on his new recreational sport in hangar 91. A lifelong friendship blossomed in the Dread galley.

After military service, Castle became principal financier of an upstart corporataion specializing in explosives manufacturing. It was not a sound business decision. It was a bust. With retirement funds squandered, Castle asked long-time friend Ortiz, now Chairman of the DGB, for a helping hand. Ortize graciously replied, donating the funds to retool Castle’s corporate warehouses into a kitchen empire. A dream come true, Castle happily abandoned his efforts at armament sales for his life’s calling; Chocolate.

Reciprocating the generosity of Ortiz, Castle’s new corportation not only serves as the official Chocolatier of Digby, it also hosts a cavity inducing DreadBall tournament:

The Cocoa Castle Corporation Cup (C-4).

Konrad Castle wouldn’t reward the C-4 winner with just an ordinary trophy.  No way!  Instead, the Champion gets CHOCOLATE.  Golden Blaine?  Ha!  The C-4 has a BLAINE BAR.  There is nothing better in the galaxy that an edible totem of the infamous mercenary trapped in a casket of carbonite.  I mean, cocoa.

Here’s how it was done.

With molten chocolate in hand (and a little in mouth), a steady pour and patience to dry resulted in…

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May the best Coach enjoy this morsel of mayhem.  And remember, even the worst Coach doesn’t leave hungry.  Last place gets a BreadDoll.  All coaches go back to the local room with a custom Home / Visitor card.  And there’ll be some certificates and more chocolate delicacies to boot.  Good luck to everyone attending the C-4!  Interested competitors may still attend.  Please visit DreadBall.com.

Rush Report / Tournament Time: Adepticorp 2018

 

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So the DreadBall tournament at Adepticon was held a few weeks ago. All the members of BreadDoll were in attendance and I had a great time, no doubt aided by my victory. There were 14 coaches playing, a big improvement over last year with only 6 coaches due to the lull between the announcement of 2nd Edition and it’s release this year.

The tournament started a bit rough. I was matched up against fellow BreadDoller Lee Montgomery, one of the best DreadBall players I know. Lee is a master of DreadBall tactics as I’m sure is clear from his articles here. A little something known as the Sucker Draw that you might all be familiar with was used on me and the best I could manage was a tie with Lee in that first game. It was a close thing against Lee’s Sphyr.

The next 2 games were a lot of fun and ended in landslide victories. I played a Matsudan team and a Forge Father team run by some really great guys.

The third game was against a great guy named Volker who was going into the final round undefeated playing the Sphyr. Both of our dice rolls during the final game were absolutely terrible but Volker’s roll were some of the worst dice I’ve ever seen. I won the game and the tournament.

I was the Visiting team in every match of the tournament.

Pitch Protocols: Tactics Talk—The Sucker Draw

Pitch Protocols: Tactics Talk—The Sucker Draw

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Well, that’s annoying….

It is just about launch time, your team is frothing at the mouth to put a hurt on the opposition. The crowd is going crazy, you are the Home team after all. But then, as you scan the opposition, you realize that they’ve committed to cowering near their subs bench, castling up, or setting a deep screen. Being so far removed from where the action is, your left with some less than optimal decisions. Do you spend most of your Rush simply getting into position? Do you dole out only some token hurt, lacking the necessary actions to punish the opposition in earnest? Their devious deep set-up leaves you with a less than fulfilling Rush that they will surely capitalize on….or does it? Enter: The Sucker Draw.

 

Why waste actions going to them, when you make the opposition come to you? That’s what the Sucker Draw is all about. Spin their game plan right back on to them. This works particularly well if your team is geared for attrition and likes to play a bit of slow ball.

To start, get hold of the ball, and turtle up a sizable distance away (preferably at least two move actions from the nearest opposition). Make sure to have a barrier of some of your own players for opposing players to have to navigate around. With no easy routes to the ball, they will have to spend their whole Rush stretching themselves to get into position. If the opposing team has some players close to the center, swarm them with a vengeance to knock them off the pitch if possible. Otherwise, use some actions to position a pair of players in preparation for besieging the opposition defensive line or Castle.

Done well, the opposing team will have very little to effectively do, save moving. On your subsequent Rushes, your ball carrier must play a little keep away. The rest of your players systematically eliminate the closest opposition players or biggest threats. Where possible, always try to keep a pair of players working in tandem to keep the opposition formation under pressure.

Do not panic if you lose the ball. If you position yourself well, there will often be very little that your opponent will be able to do with it, if they get it, having spent most of their actions simply trying to get in position in the first place. In doing so, they have most likely stretched themselves out without support, leaving you plenty of opportunities to team up on them and Slam at will. If the ball is lost, simply start the process over: secure the ball, turtle up, beat down nearest threats.

Admittedly, this process is best utilized by strong, Slam heavy teams. However, with some forethought and clever positioning, most squads can use this tactic capably. As the Home team, you do still need to make sure you get some points on the board. The ideal end game scenario is that you are able to decimate the defense and score big late in the match. When the opposition finally gets a chance to handle the ball on or near the last Rush, they will ideally find themselves low on numbers and out of position to capably Strike back with the equalizing score.

One of the true strengths of this approach, is that by decimating the players not set in a screen or Castle, the opposition is often forced to break their own formation to field players capable of coming after you—doing the hard work for you and opening up those prized scoring lanes while presenting more targets for slamming in the process!

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The Sphyr have been cagey with the ball for almost the entire match. Now, with the clock winding down, they move to score on the stretched out Judwan.

While this tactic is described from the set-up perspective, it can be used later in the game if the opportunity presents itself. The key is patience, and a fair amount of practice. It can also be put to devastating effect by a Visiting team, clinching the game winning Strike in the final rush. Also, it should be noted that it’s not a strategy that needs to be committed to for an entire match. You may find that once you start to create a deficit of players for the opposing team, you are more than willing to trade strikes with them, having properly handicapped them in the process!