It’s that time of the year once more where sixteen teams fight it out upon the field of glory, brush off their dusty boots, polish up their armour and prepare to do or die. This is Blood Bowl in the HDSWBLL in the Seventh season since the leagues inception and it will once again prove to be another fun packed season with thrills and spills and plenty of deaths.
With all the teams now confirmed, it’s my job to give a preview of all the teams for you, the fans, to pick you favourites for this season. I will leave my predictions until the first week of matches have taken place but in the meantime here are the teams who will take to the field this season.
Atrocity Exhibition are back! And this time they are really hoping to make it to all the matches and win something this year. In the previous season they entered they performed partially well in the smashing department causing a bone crunching 22 casualties, to the pleasure of their fans. They also made the semi-finals of the Championship IV after beating RSV 2-1, but sadly lost to the Loren Rangers. Their star player to watch this season is Briel Fester who caused 10 of the Exhibiton’s 22, he will surely want to re-open his accounts and smash a few more in this season.
Barak Varr Rebels
The Rebels are a new team this season and a strange one at that. Their popular “Motorbyke” has caused no end of trouble for the population everywhere and the forming of these “Motorbyke” gangs worldwide. After being outlawed from their city they stumbled upon the leagues most talked about player last season “Billy Bones” of Grimwood Voodoo and introduced the Rebels to his old coach, Klaus von Jaeger. Out for fame and fortune these piston headed dwarfs could prove themselves as the best gang around the town, or even the world.
The Blackburners are back after a very successful season last year wining the HDWSBBL Shield. And rumours have it that the spunky little dwarfs are out to get even more silverware or even defend their shield title, something which has never been done before in the history of the league. But before you over look this team lets first recap that despite finishing bottom in their division last season, they still defined all the critics and came out on top to win, despite being cast off to loose against Creeping Death. They also helped the shield become popular along with the rest of the teams than it has ever been before. A team to certainly keep an eye on this season. Star player to watch is that sneaky git Buggerit who caused 3 Cas last season.
The first ever High Elf team to enter the league (Not the rumoured Avelorn Lions!) certainly look like they will do the business here in the league where around 80% of the leagues title winners have been an elf team. No pressure there for the Shadows. But wait a second, are they related to the Brimstone Flayers? The leagues first ever World Champions? Well yes they are indeed connected considering the coach of the Shadows banished the Flayers to the ninth realm years ago. It seems the job was not done and the Flayers entered into the HDWSBBL purely by luck. Will these plucky elves have the same fortune and luck that the Flayers had? Only time will really tell.
The Defilers were the hot favourites to become the first World Champions, by utter dominating the field with a record breaking 42 CAS in their first season alone what team could stand in their way, or who would want to stand in their way given their demonic state of maiming their opponents? The only team to defeat them and stop their hopes of a debut Championship Cup were fellow newbies the Universal Horrors who in a thrilling match beat the Defilers 2-1 to take the OWC title. This season the bookies are making the Defilers the must win team to take the World title, and with a little bit of luck the Defilers won’t put them out of business. Watch out for Festus “The Pestilent” who caused a bone crushing 13 CAS last season and will sure to cause a few more.
The previous Chaos Pact team, Damage Inc, were to say the least the worst team to surface from the north. Not to say they were the worst in the world or in the league (Valhallen Vixens, Ankle Biters & Highland Nut Crushers to name a few) but they didn’t represent Chaos to it’s potential or it’s best. So when this Chaos Pact team entered the league most people were a little confused as to why another would try their luck. But who is to say that Finbar will follow the same trend? Their colourful background is proof that they are more than capable of being the best in the league. A team to certainly watch if not for the mayhem that they will certainly cause.
Gitz ‘n’ Shigglez
The first Goblin team to enter the league. They will surely find themselves in a bit of a pickle considering most of their opposition are at least 3″ taller than them and are far, far more spikier. But rumours have it that ‘Gitz ‘n’ Shigglez’ have a lot of money in their pockets, and money certainly talks in the Blood Bowling world. Although it is frowned upon these sneaky buggers will surely cause a few mishaps to other teams and perhaps even win a few matches along the way? Even if they fail to do so, wherever a Goblin team in involved your warranted a real show!
Har Ganeth Heartbreakers
With the success of the Flayers last season and the greatest champions in the league to date, the Karond Kar Corsairs, it’s no wonder Dark elves are flocking in their masses to join the HDWSBBL. The Heartbreakers are no different and will be trying their very best to reap the rewards the previous two giants had. But could this be too much for the Heartbreakers? To follow in the steps of legends is a tough task, but this team has a lot of backing to do very well this season from some famous faces. If they can win their first three matches they have a very good chance to make the play-offs.
The first ever Vampire team to hit the HDWSBBL. Armed with sunglasses to allow daylight playing times, and a host of thrall minions, the Nightlords are hoping they will really chew the fat out of the competition. Fan favourite from last season commonly know as “The Doc” has taken charge of the Nightlords leaving his old team the Universal Horrors, and given the Horrors won the OWC last season there is quite a lot of expextation for the Doc to do the same great things for the Nightlords. Considering they are the first Vampire team in the league the Doc has an advantage that no one knows how Vampires really play, and how incredibly hungry they are.
The very late entry into the league, the Titans are hoping to do great things here in the league and a lot better than previous human teams such as the Manhunters. Armed with an Ogre they can surely do well if they can get him to stay focused on the match at hand and to not daydream off into another world. Not much else is known about this team due to their late entry, and we have no idea if they have been training at all!
Sect of Temptation
When the Manhunters finally disappeared from the HDWSBBL, the name of Havelock was in tatters thanks to Lord Havelock’s rubbish tactics and refusal to comment on any game to the media, instead throwing an unexpected janitor into the pack (which incidentally made him a superstar). They do say that behind a great man is an even greater woman, and boy you don’t want to mess with Lady Havelock. Using her husbands name and the millionaire Harthur Daily, the Sect of Temptation were born, an all female team who do not allow men to join or even support them claiming they are far too weak minded. Although being rather sexist the Sect are sure to cause an impact on the league most likely due to their rather skimpy kit…
Many groans and sighs were heard around the world when the leagues most hated team said they were returning. This time Arcani Spark has brought his entire family along with him in the hopes that his talent will rub off on them making them the best Skaven team in the world. Armed with fleas and diseases you don’t wish to catch the Slammers make their glorious return. Their highest point was during the 2510/11 season where they won the Spite Challenge and their first Major Championship Cup and also being sponsored by Spite for an entire season. Their first piece of silverware was the Slammer Shield in which they beat the opposition to be the first team to win their own cup. Although the team seems weak they are very resilient and although being the most targeted team in the league many team find that they “Just won’t die!” as quoted by Jordan Hawk head coach of the Rangers. Key player to keep an eye on is Arcani Spark who has scored 28 TD in his Tail Slammers career and is currently the number one active player in the league and currently residing in 6th in the overall best players table.
The Tobacconists had a good start last season despite it being their first season. Their only let down was the amount of matches they could of won but more than often drew. But this season the team looks fresh and ready to do even better than last season and really go the distance. Although they find it hard gaining the reputation of fellow Chaos team the Drakwald Defilers, they still gain a popular fan base (mainly because they promote the smoking industry and have bags of money from it!). Player to watch from this team is their star Minotaur, Lucky Strike, who last season caused 6 CAS and killing 1 player.
Temper Bay Marauders
The Marauders did not have the best of luck last season, narrowly loosing and drawing matches due to silly mistakes in tactics. But nearer the end of the season the Orc boys finally got their mojo working and started to pull some very convincing wins off. They luckily made it into the play-offs in third place and made it to the Semi-finals to boot. Reaping the success they had at the end the Marauders have been working hard to nail their tactics down and become one of the best Orc teams in the league. Key player to the Marauders success is their Captain Garash Rockhead who has scored 6 TD’s so far in his career.
The Asgard Marauders
When it comes to Norse teams in the HDWSBBL they either do very well or very badly. The Marauders are here to make sure that people know Norse teams are very good and restore their reputation they are very mean buggers. Although a Yeti has not been tamed for the team, they are hoping the strength in their players will be more than enough to smash their opponents. A team to watch closely this season to see if they can bring fame and fortune to the north men once more.
The Nexus Sykes
The Sykes are another fresh team this season and are also carrying the flag for the human nations. Hailing from Middenland (Yes that’s near the Manhunters domain!) they pick there players by pitting them in to the death combat to pick only the finest and strongest in the lands. Hoping to also do better than the Manhunters the Nexus Sykes enter the league to prove themselves to the world but also to other human nations across the globe. A team to certainly keep an eye one this season.
And that’s my season preview (finally) finished. I wish all the teams the best of luck this season and hope that they find wealth, glory and fame along their path to destiny.
– Bob Fortune