DreadBall Season 2 Design Theory: Girls! Girls! Girls!

One of the things I really like about the way the Void Sirens have come out is that the models make sense to me. Very often in fantasy and SF miniatures, the women get to wear little more than chainmail bikinis and other such dubious fashions. Now don’t get me wrong here – I’m far from suggesting that attractive women should hide their talents under a bushel, but I do like things to make sense, both visually and otherwise. In order for me to really believe in a fictional world it’s got to make sense, at least under its own terms, and very often female models fail badly in this regard. If there’s a reason why they’re scantily clad then fine. On the other hand, if they’re supposedly front line warriors or standing about in a snowfield then it just seems a bit silly. That’s my personal view, anyway.

FemCorp_color_pinkSo when I saw the concepts for the Void Sirens I was very pleased, and when the models came out as well as they have done I was even happier. I even rather like the pink colour scheme as it’s been executed brilliantly and actually fits in very nicely with the way Digby thinks: stereotype and showmanship.

They look like professional DreadBall players, not cheesecake pinups, and that image of strong professional sportspeople is exactly what I wanted to see. They are similar, but not identical to the Trontek designs, and this too is nice. It gives them their own character, which is important. In game terms, they have their own character too.

The Void Sirens are an all-female human DreadBall team who play in a rather different style from the Trontek 29ers. The fact that they are all women is neither here nor there really, and in fact you could use the male or female human models to be either of the two human team archetypes (Trontek 29ers or Void Sirens). If you’d prefer to play a mixed team then by all means go for it. The only thing you need to do is make it clear to your opponent which of the two team styles yours follows. In other words, you can mix the models, but not the rules.

So how are they different? Well to start with their team has a sightly different composition of player roles. They still have all 3 in the team, though have swapped one of their Guards for an extra Jack. Jacks are where it’s at for the Void Sirens.

Their Strikers and Guards are identical to the Trontek ones, but the Jacks all start with Running Interference. In addition, the team has 4 Coaching Dice and no cards. All of these combine to make them a rather distinct prospect on the pitch. Think about it for a moment: you’re playing against the Sirens and you start your Rush. Anything up to four of their models can interrupt you at any time and jump in to Slam your active player. Makes you think a bit harder about your movement, right? That’s the idea.

VS and robotsAlso, with 4 Coaching Dice to start with, the Jacks suddenly get the possibilities of doing stuff they would normally struggle with – at least a couple of times – but a couple of times might be all it takes. It doesn’t hurt their Guard and Strikers to be able to draw on this pool either.

Finally, the lack of a card at the start of the game is another interesting wrinkle people didn’t always pick up on when they first look at the stats. This means that they can’t buy more during a game as the limit per Rush is the number you had started with. This is generally seen as a disadvantage, though it has its positive side too. You spend all your actions focussed on the players now rather than the chance of getting a useful result for later. Again, it forces a slight mental shift in approach, which is typical of the way these teams have been designed.

So despite being the same statline as the Trontek 29ers for the most part, the Void Sirens both look and play quite differently on the pitch. Are they better or worse? Well, that’s a matter of opinion. All I can really say is that they’re something new.

This entry was posted in DreadBall - The Futuristic Sports Game, Game Design Theory. Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to DreadBall Season 2 Design Theory: Girls! Girls! Girls!

  1. Jon Finn says:

    As a confirmed card addict, I feel a little queasy at the thought of going through a whole match without even one card! It will be really interesting to see how the Sirens perform on the pitch: it’ll be a whole new playing style for me.

    • Mike says:

      In a league, can a team increase how many cards it has? I’m sure you can increase your coaching dice but without the rules to hand I can’t check about cards. If, as the team grows, it gets acess to cards that would certainly help!

  2. Lee says:

    Can’t wait to try them out, going to try a game with them this week….using my regular Corp models, of course.

      • Lee says:

        Played two games with them yesterday. Very different! The coaching dice was an awesome resource, but I found myself burning them early and often. Worked to great effect in the first match (4 rush landslide), nearly went south in the second( full time 4 point win, but most of team dead or injured). The lack of card draws become very noticeable. I admittedly don’t draw a lot during games with regular corp, but knowing that I couldn’t even if I wanted to was a bit unsettling. I found myself wasting actions as I was loath to move my jacks out of position to be able to use RI effectively. Fun team to play and they really do have a different feel than the 29rs.

  3. Rolex says:

    Women and Toy soldiers are the 2 things I like most and is says it all about my thoughts about the Sirens. Keen to see how they play. 🙂

  4. mattadlard says:

    have to say do like the design, and agree with what you where saying about look and function. Will be interesting to see how play goes with these figures.
    Q. Is the card option just for the Void Sirens or female characters, as what happens for those wanting to play a mxed team?

    • Quirkworthy says:

      You pick to either use the Void Siren or Trontek 29ers list to model your team on. You can’t mix rules from them. However, the rules don’t care whether the model you use is male or female, so the models are mixable even though the rules aren’t.

  5. E r i c k B o u c h a r d says:

    That team’s mechanics look absolutely brilliant. When reading the Season 1 book, I thought that Jacks could really become… well, jacks (as in card games), if they had the option to get Running Interference. Playing against that team will become a major puzzle. I even think they’ll make harsh competition for the Trontek 29ers, scrapping a chance for a 3 point strike just by standing at the right place at the right time. Great team for positioning and tactical thinking.

    I look forward to playing them and painting the lot in “Tron”-like pink and black!

  6. Socks says:

    Thanks for a really thoughtfully designed team. I’ve been in the hobby for nearly 20 years and in general it has, to my everlasting sadness, made very little progress in shaking off its cringy, boys-only image, but this is really good stuff. 🙂

  7. LavaJohn says:

    Just read through the PDF rules for the teams, they look good. One question arises though, are the void sirens supposed to have a starting roster of 8? And the Zzor 7?

  8. Wonderful, very nice article and information, i want to present to my local freinds throughout facebook or myspace.

  9. Compel says:

    Any suggestions on the best ways to show who has burned their run interference?

  10. Pingback: Dreadball Season 2 – The Wargamers Forum Archive

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