DBX Details: Why Strikers Can’t Slam

A number of people have asked why it is that in DreadBall Xtreme Strikers are not allowed to Slam. After all, there are “no rules” on the pitch. The answer seems so obvious to me that it’s been hard getting it across, so I’ll try to explain the background reasons a bit more fully. It’s crystal clear in my head so the issue is just one of conveying that image. 

Let’s start off with defining the terms in the title: Slam and Strikers. Exactly what does each of them mean in the world of DreadBall and DreadBall Xtreme?


What Is A Slam?

DreadBall is a full contact sport.

The entire time a player is on the pitch they can expect to be pushed, shoved, jostled and barged about – and they’ll give the same back to their opponents. There is a constant undercurrent of violent contact in the game, and this ubiquitous jostling for position is far too commonplace to be modelled in detail in the board game. However, it does appear in the game rules in an abstracted form as the modifiers imposed by threat hexes, and the requirement to make Evade tests.

It’s not worth trying to model the bulk of this pushing and shoving as specific tests because it is so ubiquitous. To do so would double the playing time. Also, the bulk of this shoving about isn’t very effective and only really gives a player a marginal edge for that moment’s jockeying for position. All the extra time spent rolling tests would make very little difference to the outcome. Watch something like basketball and you’ll see this sort of shoving used all the time around the scoring zones (and BB isn’t exactly a full contact sport like DBX). It’s routine, it’s used by every type of player, and of so little consequence that it is largely ignored by the referee. This sort of contact is not a Slam.

So what is a Slam

A Slam is a powerful and focussed attack that aims to knock down and injure the target. It’s not incidental barging or shirt pulling, it’s a deliberate assassination attempt. 

In the context of this routine undercurrent of violence, a Slam has to be of considerable violence to stand out and have a distinct game effect. The players are collectively inured to the normal bumps and bruises, and a level of incidental violence is just part of moving from A to B on the pitch. Nobody thinks twice about it.

In order for an attack to count as a Slam it has the potential to be the sort of thing that a 300+ pound fully armoured Orx Guard is going to notice. 


What Are Strikers?

There are two basic skills on the DB pitch: handling the ball and smashing opponents out of the way.  

Strikers are one of three player types in the game: Guards, Jacks and Strikers. This distinction between player roles applies in DBX as much as it does in the DreadBall played in the main arenas and on the tri-vid. It is a core feature of how the game works in all its forms, in both background terms and board game rules. If the player roles are not present then you’re not playing DreadBall. 

Strikers are defined by one simple feature: they can’t Slam

This is what makes them different from Guards or Jacks. Sure they can handle the ball, but so can Jacks. In fact, some Jacks are better than Strikers at that skill, so that cannot be the defining point of difference. 

I’ll say it again: the key defining feature of the role of Striker is their inability to Slam. Guards can Slam. Jacks can Slam. Strikers can’t. 

Now as Strikers can’t Slam they have to be good at handling the ball otherwise they are useless on the pitch. That follows naturally. However, it is a consequence, not a defining feature.  

Of course, on the pitch a Striker can push and shove opponents like anyone else (and they exert threat hexes like everyone else to show this in the board game). Nobody is banning them from that. However, for one reason or another they simply aren’t up to attacks that would count as Slams. Why not? Well, there are a number of possible reasons. The first ones that spring to mind are: 

  • Some Strikers are simply too small and weedy. Their physique makes them too feeble to Slam effectively.
  • Some Strikers may be poorly trained in combat techniques so that their attempts to attack opponent are weakly delivered to count as Slams
  • Some Strikers are too timid, scared or otherwise mentally unprepared to Slam. They don’t want to risk starting a fight they know they can’t finish.
  • Some Strikers are too focussed on being good at other things. They know they cannot compete with the big Guards at their own game, so get where they want by concentrating on speed and agility instead. 

Whatever the reason, Strikers are physically, mentally or emotionally not equipped to Slam

Many of the comments I have seen say something like “well a Striker could decide to Slam someone”. A snake could decide to have legs, but that doesn’t mean they can run 100m hurdles. Strikers, by definition, cannot Slam effectively. They can punch, shove, barge or whatever else you want to call it, just like everyone else, but this level of violence just doesn’t impress either the crowds or other DBX players. It’s expected, it’s normal, it’s entirely unremarkable. It is not a Slam. 

You might say that a player could fake an inability to Slam and get onto the pitch as a Striker only to start laying about the opposition later in the gane. Well it’s a big universe and I’m sure that happens on a few, rare occasions. Never with the same person twice though. 

Who are the most dangerous people in DBX? I’ll give you a clue – they aren’t the players. 

Lying to a Sponsor, taking their money under false pretences, upsetting the (very possibly rigged) betting by doing things you’re not supposed to… how do you think this will go down with the borderline psychopaths that run the games? The players that get onto the pitch are pussycats compared to the very heavily armed bodyguards of the Sponsors, and these are not people you want to upset. Players who lie to Sponsors tend to lose them money. People that cost Sponsors money get put in the recyclers whether they die in the game or not. The players know this and act accordingly.


So Why Can’t Strikers Slam?

A Striker cannot Slam because not being able to Slam is the key defining feature of that role. It is the very essence of what a Striker is. If the player was any good at hitting people hard enough for it to be counted as a Slam then they’d be classed as a Jack or a Guard. So, if a player can Slam then by definition he is not a Striker.

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132 Responses to DBX Details: Why Strikers Can’t Slam

  1. Angus says:

    Sorry, not buying it. I thought it was suspect even having roles in extreme. Sure for pros, but for amateurs… no they should all be ‘jacks’. But I think you are making the classic mistake of having the game design dictate play style, rather than play style dictate how mechanics should work. Extreme is about “No Rules”… so lets start be removing the silly ones that restrict slams.

    • Blax says:

      The fictional game of DBX has no rules but this is a board game which by essense has rules has got rules by definition what you are asking for is not Dreadball orginal or Xtreme. Monopoly is by large a game about buying and making a profit from areas of london. If I wanted to do that in real life I wouldnt have to travel to every part of london before getting to Park Lane so should I play monopoly like that? Go where I please? That sounds like a rubbish game of monopoly.
      There are somethings that annoy me in DB forge fathers are my biggest gripe but I still like the core of Dreadball. All these comments about strikers seems to me that these people want to play something other than Dreadball.
      If you want Strikers to slam `House Rule` it but you wont be playing Dreadball anymore.

      • Angus says:

        You are mistaking “No rules on the pitch” for “No mechanics”. Every game needs mechanics, these are the invisible workings of the universe. In our world that would be called physics. Physics apply always! If we go out to a field somewhere to play football we can foul each other all day long, but physics (the underlying mechanical principles of our reality, still apply).

    • Zweischneid says:


      If you want to have everyone of your player be a Jack, you can. Just pick only Jacks.

      Removing the option of a Striker from the game entirely based on your personal preference seems to diminish the game for no reason. Nobody is forcing you to take Strikers, if they don’t feel “right” to you.

      And, as said, “no rules” in the background doesn’t translate into “no-rules” for the game. Indeed, most miniature games are themed around warfare, often in dystopian settings without even the minimal rules of things like the Geneva convention, etc..

      That doesn’t negate the need for game-rules and abstractions.

      Similar to old arguments about “cannot Space Marine X pick up the Heavy Weapon dropped by his now-dead comrade Space Marine Y”. On pure verisimilitude, he might just do that. For an abstract wargame, it might make things easier to have said Heavy Weapon be gone, if the opponent managed to kill the Heavy-Weapon-bearing Space Marine in the game.

  2. It makes sense to me Jake. If people want to be able to slam with every model on the pitch then just field jacks and guards… why would you want to slam an orx guard (4dice at +3) with a striker (1dice at 5+)?? Surely there would always be a better option?!
    Guards can’t pick up the ball, strikers can’t slam- rules, plain and simple. It’s not real life it’s a board game. Pawns can’t capture opposing chess pieces directly in front or beside them, bishops can only move diagonally. Why? Because those are the rules of the game.
    Keep up the good work Jake.

  3. Koltoroc says:

    I’m not buying it either

    “Strikers, by definition, cannot Slam effectively” effectively is the key word here. *that* is what modifiers are for.

    “Some Strikers are simply too small and weedy. Their physique makes them too feeble to Slam effectively.”
    if they are that weedy, they won’t be able to throw the ball effectively either. They already have to be physically similar to at least average people or they are plain useless. also you probably will be surprised at how violent and brutal some “weedy” people can be. Does not work as an explanation.

    “Some Strikers may be poorly trained in combat techniques so that their attempts to attack opponent are weakly delivered to count as Slams.”

    circumstantial at best. modifiers model that just as well. Also you forget that the victim might be distracted or the attacker just has plain luck. Does not work as an explanation.

    “Some Strikers are too timid, scared or otherwise mentally unprepared to Slam. They don’t want to risk starting a fight they know they can’t finish.”

    give them pacifist if you want some to be that. Does not work as an explanation.

    “Some Strikers are too focussed on being good at other things. They know they cannot compete with the big Guards at their own game, so get where they want by concentrating on speed and agility instead.”

    That still won’t necessarily stop them from trying. Especially in a game that is advertised as “no rules” Alsop we have the striker that wants to be a guard, where the *only* reason to stop her from slamming as a striker is the rules. the same ones that are supposedly absent from DBX. Still does not work as an explanation.

    You are trying to enforce a too rigid role system on the game that makes logically no sense without offering a suitable in universe explanation. Nobody says the strikers should be as good as jacks or guards as slamming, they should be penalized, and in DBO it should be a foul, no question, but outright banning just makes no sense at all, neither from an in universe, nor from a logical standpoint.

    Sorry, jake, but in this specific instance you are just wrong.

    • Koltoroc says:

      Also, DB(X) is about the spectacle primarily, and what can be more spectacular then this small weedy git with a body count like a small army?

    • Andy says:

      I agree with Jake on this one (and first post after reading the blog since DBO). Even in a ‘No rules’ game there are some rules that define the game in such a key aspect that to break them destroys the game. For instance in professional football the offside rule is strictly enforced, however in a ‘friendly’ kick-around or a Sunday league that rule is relaxed. The same for tackling without getting the ball. In a professional match you could get sent off and fined. With your mates it could mean nothing depending on intent of the tackle. So there you have two examples of rules in a game that are relaxed depending on situation.

      Now if you were to pick the ball up and use your hands in a game of football the game you are playing ceases to be football. Even 8 year olds playing at school know that you can’t handball, because as soon as you do you stop playing football.

      Now for another sport, Netball. Each player has a set position in the field of play can cant move out of that area. If there were an illegal netball scene i’m pretty sure this rule will still be enforced as it is intrinsic to the game. The rule for contact however maybe relaxed however to allow.

      The rule that a Striker can’t slam is an intrinsic rule that as soon as its broken means that you are effectively not playing dread ball.

      Now the way i picture it is that they can slam if they really want to (poorly with very little benefit) but it massively turns the crowd against them for not ‘playing the game’ and no player wants that, no matter how short there life span is.

    • Blax says:

      Nope those explanations work fine. They are trying to slam that why they have threat hexs and cause players to evade from them.

      Last time I checked its Jakes game so he cant quite be wrong. He might not have made it how you like it but he is always going to be right until he says he is wrong. Like the Judwan or ball launches for instance.

      • Alex says:

        That is complete nonsense. It is not the creator’s place to decide whether his work is good or not. With the Judwan lock, Jake wrote a set of rules that broke the game. Whether or not he admitted as such is irrelevant.

        • Andy says:

          I think what Blax is trying to say here is that Jake can’t be wrong about the reasons for doing things in the game, not if the game is good or not.

          The Judwan were a balance issue and were corrected as such. Now if Strikers not being able to slam were a balance issue then it may be game breaking. But it’s not. The game is balanced around strikers not being able to slam.

        • Blax says:

          Yes that is my point. Jake cannot decide whether his own game is any good other than in his own opinion same as everyone else that plays can decide if its any good or not that is your own opinion. Jake has the final say in whether his set of rules are the official correct version.

        • Alex says:

          What Blax /is/ saying here is that Jake wasn’t wrong about the Judwan lock until he admitted he was wrong.

        • Andy says:

          Jake admitted there could be a problem quite early on after it was highlighted repeatedly. Knowing there is a problem and knowing the solution to fix it is not always an easy thing.

        • Blax says:

          Yes that is my point. Jake cannot decide whether his own game is any good other than in his own opinion same as everyone else that plays can decide if its any good or not that is your own opinion. Jake has the final say in whether his set of rules are the official correct version.

          This is much the same way that you are saying that Jake is wrong, your words, to have made a decision on his own game. You may not agree with it thats fine but doesnt make it wrong. I dint agree with tax but that wont make it wrong.

    • Quirkworthy says:

      @Koltoroc – I’m not “wrong” here because I’m describing a fictional reality that I invented and which I have in my head. Can you read my mind? I’m guessing that you cannot. That being the case, how can you say with confidence or any pretence to authority that I am describing creations of my own imagination incorrectly? That’s just silly.

      What I am doing is describing the way the game works in this fictional reality – the one I created. Strikers do not Slam for all the reasons I described. I addressed all the points you raised, but still it seems like that is not enough. I suspect that you will not like any explanation until it agrees with your own.

      That’s fine. You’re entitled to an opinion just as I am. I don’t expect everyone to agree with me all the time.

      One of the reasons I post design notes and WIP rules here is to discuss them. I do this often and have made many changes based on such comments. However, I don’t make changes on the basis of someone just telling me I am wrong. I make changes based on evidence. All the things you are arguing have been addressed already. Saying them again does not make them more compelling.

      @Alex – the creator has the responsibility to make decisions on what he thinks works and what doesn’t and to do so in the interests of the game in its widest sense, not, for example, to favour one race over another. Individual users will decide whether they think it’s any good or not. If they comment (as you have) during the development process then the creator can take those views into consideration, and should weigh them in the light of the overall end result.

      • Chris Gould says:

        I think the rules are fine the way they are. The Striker’s job is no to attack people. Just like a Guard’s job is not to handle the ball. If you’re responsibility is to run and throw the ball, why would you risk getting hurt trying to slam an opponent? Just like if you have size advantage, why wouldn’t you use it to slam? In American football, you won’t see a Running Back throwing the ball as a quarterback does. Doesn’t mean he can’t try. His job on the field is different. If you have players on the pitch to slam, why does everyone? If everyone was capable of slamming, then what’s the point of the ball and points systems? Regardless of stats, even if they’re all the same, what happens in the rules if your strikers die because you’re reckless with them? It decreases your chances of winning. If people want their strikers to slam, they should just play Jacks.

  4. “Some Strikers are simply too small and weedy. Their physique makes them too feeble to Slam effectively.” If this was the case maybe the strength stat of Strikers should have been lower than other positions. “Some Strikers are too focussed on being good at other things. They know they cannot compete with the big Guards at their own game, so get where they want by concentrating on speed and agility instead.” Then maybe the strikers should have been given a higher speed stat to represent this then.
    With the Forge Fathers strikers I suppose the strikers are small but there high strength isn’t exactly weedy, there low speed stat doesn’t exactly seem like concentrating on speed and agility is in there interests.

  5. crimsonsun says:

    I understand where the guys who feel Strikers should be able to slam are coming from in a real world sense but at the end of the day this is a board game not an RPG so you have to have an abstract set of rules with which to build the game around.

    On the other hand I do not see why it could not be house ruled very simply: Strikers can slam with a -1 dice penalty and no free square of movement. This makes them noticeably worse than jacks at slamming and no where close to a Guard but it might get them out of a jam in a pinch.


  6. Ps my team if choice is marauders or forge fathers so that I CAN slam as often as possible, it just makes scoring more difficult for me but that’s my choice and decision fully aware of the rules of the game and the tactical nuances they present.

  7. Plus don’t get blinded by the strength stat of strikers- it is superfluous…

  8. All humans are st4, all forge fathers are st3 etc… in the future I suppose they could ‘re do the books etc and remove the st stat where appropriate (I actually thought the digital stuff might have done this).

    • Blax says:

      Strength stat isnt just for slammibg anymore. You need it for recovery rolls. Why confuse the issue by removing a stat for 1 player role?

  9. Blax says:

    It seems to me that alot of this is going back and forth because some people beleive there should not be roles and all players should be defined by their stats and not the actions they can do. Dreadball could of been like that I guess it might of work. However it wasnt it was based around 3 roles and what each of those roles can and cant do. Now we can argue till the cows come home that someone no matter how weak can punch someone or at least try but then we are arguing whether you can or cant punch someone if your weak. Jakes made it pretty clear the in Dreadball Strikers cant slam if they could you are playing Mr Zippys Dreadball Bonazah not actual Dreadball. You dont have to like it, hell you dont have to play it if your opponent agrees with you. You do however have to accept that that is hiw the games designer set the game out and probably how it is going to stay.

    • Koltoroc says:

      half right. I believe the distinction should not come from what you are allowed to do at all, bur from what a player is good at. It is better to (heavily) discourage actions than outright banning them. Even if I get to slam with strikers at a penalty, I probably won’t do it that much, because they are bad at it. But in some situation that will be a valid and useful option. And I want to be able to make that choice, even if that means to sacrifice that striker in a futile attempt to turn the game around.

      Also, jake made it not clear at all, why they can’t, just why some might not be good at it. He put in an arbitrary restriction that still lacks a proper ingame explanation, why they, regardless of species, can’t slam. I am looking for a consistency between rules and universe and a logical and in universe consistent explanation as to why. This is not it.

      A good way to do it is the “guards have no dreadball glove so can’t handle the ball” explanation. I still don’t like it and rather have them being bad at it but it is a consistent and valid explanation, that covers *all* guards regardless of species. but since there is a consistent reasoning I’m not arguing against it.

      Also I don’t have to accept a reasoning if I consider it flawed. However, I do accept that jake is the final authority on what will be official, but that still doesn’t mean he or his reasoning is right and I will continue arguing for what I think is right until I have an explanation on why I am wrong that I can understand and makes sense to me.

      it might never come, but I will not accept “because I say so” as a valid reason. I want to be convinced I am wrong, but this doesn’t do it at all.

      • crimsonsun says:

        I feel your issue has more to do with why I lean towards games with a heavy RPG element and away from those with Board Game style limitations.

        The simple fact is Board games are designed with a very smooth rules set in mind that will something clash with our real world explanations to the point where from time to time they make no sense at all and the only reason this will be enforced is purely on a games design/balance based level.

        Sadly this has been the case in all of the more complex board games I have ever played (and these tend to be the only ones I play) and it is just something I have learnt to accept in terms of board games and why I tend to play games with a more RPG base in design.


      • Quirkworthy says:

        @Koltoroc – I’m really unsure why you can’t understand this. A Slam is something that is notably above the run-of-the-mill shoving that goes on constantly (and which is dealt with by threat hex and evade rules). You are entirely correct that some people can both deliver attacks of this potency and throw the ball. These people are called Jacks. The ones whose attacks are too feeble or who are unwilling to make them are called Strikers. Suggesting that every player can deliver attacks of this potency seems to be a misunderstanding of the meaning of the term Slam.

        • Koltoroc says:

          I understand, but I disagree. A slam is trying to beat up someone, and if you suck at it, gues what, that is what modifiers are for. For both. even if you personally suck at it, if you outnumber the target you still have a realistic shot at beating your target up. And if you have fouls like suckerpunch and stomp, you catch the target off guard and have a chance to do damage regardless, even if you need a bigger amount of luck in doing so.

      • Vinsssounet says:

        Well trying to summarize the different things that have been said here :
        – Striker are so bad at slamming that their attempt to do so are so feeble that they cannot be categorized at a Slam
        – if a player would be, even remotely, good at it, he would be a Jack
        – you understand that but think it should be represented as a rule with the modifiers

        Now let’s imagine that we do rule it. That would give something like :
        “Slam modifier :
        +1 if you are a Guard
        -3 if you are a Striker”

        So, in the end, it would be used on the very rare occasional cases where you get 2 assists on your target and a handful of coaching dice that you really would want to use on this Slam. Extremely rare, so why making the rules more complicated that they need to be ?

        For this simple fact : if we start doing this, we need to do this for everything. For example, do you think you need the “Jump” ability to try to jump ? Anyone can jump in real life. Let’s jump. Even if it makes it hard to jump with a Dreadball armor, well that’s why modifiers are for. Let’s allow Jump at -2 modifier for everyone.

        And let’s allow 17 hexes long passes, at -6 modifiers. Why having a limit ? You could try it after all.

        Well, you see the point. You can simulate anything with the proper modifiers. But there is a line where you start filling your rulebook with entire pages of modifiers that you will use once every 100 games.

        That line should not be crossed, and for the sake of keeping the game entertaining and not uselessly complicated, Strikers not being able to Slam is valid.

        Now I feel the urge to add that I say this politely and in all friendship as typing on Internet can make it hard to know.

    • Angus says:

      Guess I will be playing Mr Zippys Dreadball Bonazah then.

  10. Bjorn Bonten says:

    I for one understand the Strikers cant Slam idea. Strikers are selected upon their speed and handiness with the ball, not their bulk or their aggression. I can imagine many a sidekick convict character put in the game for his sleight of hand and nimbleness while his “big brother” is the muscle to brutalise whats in the way.

  11. Ben says:

    Why Strikers can’t slam. Because the specific skill-set, body type, and the amount of position specific training they have to put in to be a striker prevents them from being effective enough at slamming for it to make an impact on the game mechanics. They could choose to divert some of their time to training slams and changing their physique but these changes to training and physique mean they’re not very good at being Strikers anymore. These players who train a bit at being Strikers and train a bit at being Guards have a name, they’re called Jacks. If you feel your Strikers should be allowed to slam, then replace them with Jacks because within confines of the conceptual world of the game, this is what they would be.

    Not convinced? Then riddle me this, what aside from your own personal opinion would prove that Strikers should be allowed to slam? Nothing, that’s what. There is no debate here.

    • crimsonsun says:

      I’m sorry but Seriously??? Riddle me this, what aside from YOUR own personal opinion would prove that Strikers should not be allowed to Slam…

      I am not of a strong enough opinion either way to become emotionally involved in the debate but I really feel strongly about people stating there opinion if FACT, for an opinion to be fact you need evidence, without evidence all it can ever be is opinionated fact but hence still and opinion and we are all entitled to our own and we are all entitled to disagree with some one else’s.

      So yes in my opinion there is plenty of room for debate here, but you are of course entitled to disagree but please do not claim that to be anything more than an opinion.

      • Ben says:

        I seem not to having gotten myself across to you very well. I stated an opinion, then asked what aside from personal opinion do dissenters have to disprove it. This is all personal opinion and arguing personal opinion is pointless. Especially when only one opinion counts.

        So, in brief, yes I’m serious and apology accepted.

        • crimsonsun says:

          Ah but debate is the whole point of releasing a beta rules set, people are not discussing a published and highly regarded polished product but are in the process of testing and discussing what needs changing and what does not.

          Such a subject can only ever be opinion and the whole purpose would be semi pointless if people were not allowed to state there opinion. I would argue it is at this point of games design where discussing opinion is more valid than any other time.

          So to sum up, the debate has no better time to be argued than currently so let people argue. You are of course correct though there is only one person who’s final say in the matter counts, but that should not discourage those who feel strongly about it to attempt to change his opinion. I know I will argue for something I feel is important regardless of popular consensus.

        • Quirkworthy says:

          Absolutely. I am, as I have said many times, happy to hear dissenting views. I have modified rules based on such views on many occasions in the past and expect I will again in the future.

    • Angus says:

      I am happy with Strikers not slamming in DB. But in DBX the players are not pros, they have not had extensive training at playing any position.

  12. Bidge says:

    I am fully behind the way Jake wants to do this. Even before his explanation it just makes sense to me.

    Let me give you my own experience from playing games like football or rugby with my mates as a kid growing up. In either game when we were just having a kick-about, some of us wanted to be strikers in say football, others defenders, in rugby (our loose version) some us wanted to run with the ball, others wanted to half in two those running with ball.

    However in either game we tended to stick to those roles, nobody told us to, it was just what we liked doing, generally because were were better at one aspect or another. I also observe that in most cases those that wanted to be strikers didn’t come back and defend and those that wanted to be defenders didn’t go forward. The same can be said for our version of Rugby, those that wanted to run forward and attempt to score a try did, those that preferred tackling hung back, so they could half in two the ball carrier coming towards them should the ball be spilt upfield.

    So how does my observations of my childhood relate to Dreadball? Its simple, the players on the Dreadball pitch have their own preferred roles which are defined as Striker, Jack and Guard.

    Strikers like to score goals and carry the ball, but don’t want to get involved in the fights. Whilst Guards love halving in two the opposition, whilst they don’t really want the glory of being the one to score. The mentality of the player is different. There is of course the midfield, the player that does a bit of both and guess what these guys in the game of Dreadball are Jacks. Also from own personal experience these guys were the peeps that were not the best strikers/defenders or ball carriers/half in two’ers.

    Jake has represented these 3 different mentalities in the game whether it DB or DBX by having them perform within one of 3 roles.

    Me I would be a Guard as I was either a defender (or keeper) at football or in our version of rugby I was one of the guys who waited for the ball to be spilled, so I could take out the guy coming toward me with the ball.

    My best mate would always have been Striker or the guy looking to sprint down and get a try. However, he would never come back across the half way line at football to help out in defence and tackle someone at rugby (yeah right), the only diving he would do would be to get out of the way before he was flattened.

    Just my observation as to how I have seen real life mimic what Jake is creating through the rules mechanics.

    • Koltoroc says:

      a valid argument to a degree and primarily for the human teams. the motivations of the aliens can be vastly different and completely, well, alien to what we perceive.

      The problem is, that you consciously *chose* to play a certain role and follow the rules. that part is modeled. But what of those that consciously chose to *not* follow the rules of said sport? what if players don’t chose their role and use chances to attempt to do other things? or, in case of the convicts a violent killer gets assigned the striker role and suddenly sees himself at the back of an old adversary who just deserves that spiky glove in his back?

      the difference between real life and these rules is, that these rules pose an absolute barrier, that does not exist in real life.

      personally I dislike real life arguments in the vast majority of cases outside of physics, in favor of in universe consistency, because real life is normally inherently more limited then the fictional universe is. Even more so if it includes psychological arguments in real life and aliens in universe.

      • Quirkworthy says:

        Players are assigned roles by the Sponsors in the teams based on their abilities, not at random.

        • Angus says:

          Yes they are assigned roles based on talent / ability. As are the pros, but the pros also have years of specialist training to shape that talent into actual ability. Part of that will be the mind set that Strikers don’e slam. But DBX players are not pros, have not been trained for years, and are in fact almost disposable assets at the hands of the sponsor.

        • Quirkworthy says:

          Training is not an issue in DBX. The Sponsors don’t care how you got to be the way you are – all they care about is what you can and cannot do on the pitch. Before they hire someone they (or someone in their entourage) will watch them play, check out their background and ensure that they are getting someone who is worth having. Sponsors are not going to spend all that money on someone without knowing what they’re buying. They did not get to positions of power and influence in the criminal underworld by being stupid. Once they have assessed the player then they will assign them an appropriate role. Players that Slam are not assigned to Striker roles as that is not appropriate.

        • crimsonsun says:

          Surely though being a part of the criminal empire people will con these people, not every day plebs but people of equal or higher status in the criminal empire. I would hazard to say even that its far more likely people will get conned into buying a player who is not what is claimed he is on a semi regular basis.

          Just playing devils advocate here in terms of setting. 😀

    • Andrew says:

      Plus, isn’t it in the fluff that some dreadball pros get their start in DBX? If that’s the case then it would make sense for a striker who is hoping to go pro to stick with the official definition of his role.

      @Jake – have you considered allowing strikers to Slamback and Stomp with an ability that can be gained during league play? It could be justified as the striker either picking up a few hard learned lessons on the pitch, or he could’ve taking one too many blows to head and now has a VERY short fuse.

  13. Rob Clarke says:

    I’ve always got why strikers don’t slam. It makes sense.
    But because the don’t slam doesn’t mean they can’t slam. They would just suck at it.

    I have a friend that doesn’t like the fact striker don’t slam. This argument is that anyone can throw a punch . I might be with the force of a 3 year old girl but its still a punch.

    When I play him we use a house rule for the sake of completion.

    Strikers gets 1 dice to slam.

    This means he never uses a striker to slam but stops him whining that he couldn’t if he wanted to.

    • Bidge says:

      Ah, but we have an in Universe consistency. “Strikers don’t Slam”.

      My example was me trying to show through observation that the rules Jake has in place, actually work in the real the world. I’m not so sure there was a conscious decision to play where we diid, it was actually more primal than that, we just played and ended up in the positions we did.

      However in the DBX Universe that conscious decision has been removed and the sponsors/coaches have chosen what role the players will take, most likely through their own observations. Some players may choose to play a certain role, but many others will not. Either way though, the players that want to hit and throw the ball are Jacks and the game mechanics treat them as Jacks. The players who want to hit (by hit I mean to the level of the slam mechanic), but not throw the ball are Guards and game mechanics treat them as such and the players that definitely do not want to hit somebody (at the level of a slam) are Strikers for in game purposes and the mechanics of the game treat them as such. Some people will hit and others will flee. The game mechanics of DBX have them separated into those categories for us and we do not need to get into their heads and say that, but “my” strikers are different, they would slam, because as Jake has already said “Strikers don’t slam”. The mechanics of the game take those players that won’t hit at the level of a Slam and place them as Strikers.

      This carries with your argument of the violent killer. Your violent killer is an artificial construct and the artificial construct of the sponsor would have designated that player a Jack, not a Striker. The players that are not violent enough are treated by the mechanics as Strikers. Yes as Jake says they are still still pushing and shoving, probably throwing punches, twisting groins if they can get away with it and spitting in faces, but their level of violence is not high enough for the mechanic of slam to come into pace, only Jacks and Guards are that violent and as such the mechanic comes into play.

      Plus the entire Universe and game is an artificial construct where Jake has laid out his thought process as to why it happens this way in the DBX Universe.

    • Angus says:

      That works for me. The mechanics of the game enforce the role, but when the chips are down you can still try for the long shot.

  14. sideofiron says:

    Ok… Read the post, got some sleep and have now re-read it with the subsequent commentary. There is some emotion here…

    Jake, leaving the snake with legs analogy aside… Most of the points I would like to make have already been said:

    a) Rules already exist to represent a timid player, or a physically weak player, or a less skilled player.
    b) You use the word ‘effectively’ which is entirely subjective and dependent on the desired outcome.
    c) DBO already incorporates a fantastic referee system to penalize unsportsmanlike like conduct.

    Additionally, there seems to be some confusion about why a Striker might want to hit someone – the common reasoning being that they might get themselves hurt. Not all slams in the game have an element of risk for the hitter. Prone targets and Sucker Punches both are a minimum risk occasion.

    One issue (that you have highlighted yourself) is the lack of ‘fluff’ to support the premise that Strikers are the weedy, timid, flighty players who had to beg mum to sign their permission slips before they were allowed to cross the road or play a contact sport. In fact, in the absence of any wording to that effect, the users of your product are only left with one reference to draw from – the miniatures themselves. None of which (dirty dirty Judwan aside) – when looking at the poses and aesthetics – display any notion of the ‘qualities’ you have alluded to.

    All this comes down to interpretation of the fluff, and has already been discussed at length. However from a more practical angle, my question for you is what does the game lose if Strikers were permitted to slam with a modifier to represent that they aren’t particularly good at it?

    As it stands now… my Strikers can never slam someone… you have taken that option away – deciding that my Strikers are so bad at it, that even with a fist full of coaching dice; with more threat on the opponent than I could know what to do with; and irrespective of the fact that they might be targeting an equally weedy opposition striker who is helpless or prone, my player is so weak that they would never be able to influence an opponent even to the point of causing them to turn around (the minimum desirable effect of a slam being a drawn result and players turning to face).

    In contrast… if strikers were permitted to slam, albeit with a significant disadvantage you give me an opportunity as coach to decide if the risk is worth it. I can take the tools I have available and apply them to the situation – perhaps in an unconventional way – but in the absence of a nail gun, a tack hammer might just suffice.

    You have designed a fantastic dice pool mechanic which so easily factors in the pros and cons of a given situation, but also resolves effects based on the degree of success achieved. Given a perfect situation where a number of buddies are holding down an opponent, why couldn’t a striker try to get that lucky ‘assassination’ shot in?? After all – wasn’t the justification behind mandatory attempts to catch the ball and the zero dice roll for Jacks that you could use a coaching dice to achieve the otherwise impossible?

    Here is the kicker… Players who don’t think Strikers would slam just wont do it… If a two dice slam is the best you can conjure up, in most instances it wont be worth it to even try, or there are likely other options available. Players who are willing to take that risk would now have the option to.

    I don’t see any negative to the minor modification. In fact the poor under appreciated FF Striker might gain some respect, there is next to nil effect for those who don’t think it is ever worth risking their strikers to hit or hit back and you appease those who find that this abstract restriction on unconventional application of your players creates a disconnect.

    The modification it relatively easy too…

    Any Player can move one hex and conduct a slam action dashing if necessary.
    Guards can make a full run action and conduct a slam action dashing if necessary.
    +1 for being a Guard
    -x for Being a Striker
    +1 for not starting adjacent

    Any Player can respond to a Slam, Steal or Misdirect from their front arc with a slamback
    +1 for being a Guard
    -x for being a Striker

    with x being the play tested deterrent. I would think -1 would be enough, but -2 might be needed.

    Apologies for the wall of text – Hopefully it is set out well enough to make sense, and I look froward to your thoughts.

    • Bidge says:

      Actually there is a major “kicker” to paraphrase your own choice of words and that is that players who don’t hit hard enough for the mechanics to designate it a slam are called strikers, because “Strikers don’t Slam”, those that want to score and want to hit (or a capable of hitting) hard enough for it to be slam are called “Jacks”. Those that can’t are strikers.

      Wanting strikers to slam is just wanting the best of both worlds and sometimes you just can’t have your cake and eat it.

      The major negative in the argument of allowing strikers to slam is that the next argument is that we want our Guards to carry the ball and be able to score albeit with a major/minor modifier, after all its DBX, there are no rules, so the Guards will come onto the pitch wearing gloves. Who is stop them, there are no rules?

      Following the argument to its logical conclusion you would no longer have Dreadball. The mechanics exist to keep a cohesiveness to the game. For whatever reason, including all the ones laid out by various voices, but in particular Jakes, Strikers (the players chosen to fulfil that role) do not Slam.

      As for saying that players who do not think Strikers would slam, would just not do it, that is a fabrication. How do you know what I or any other player would do? So we would put ourselves at a disadvantage in game terms, because we don’t think players would do it. Poppy cock!

      I have laid out most of my other viewpoints in other posts on here, so I won’t rehash the same arguments in this post.

      Jake has also laid out his arguments very eloquently as to his reasoning. I am sorry but its time to move on and instead of us all bickering over it, get out there and support the KS, so that it gets funded to the level we need it to, so we can get an awesome game out of it with droves on mini’s and other cool stuff.

      Jake has decided (at least for the moment) how its gonna be.

      Playtest the hell out of. Even house rule your ideas into the BETA, but do it both ways, so that you can come back in a few weeks time with plenty of experience of playing it both ways under your belt and give him constructive feedback then, rather than just assuming the viewpoint that you are right, Jakes is wrong.

      Maybe those of us against it are wrong, maybe not. But the argument is better tested through LOTS of playtesting, as its not going to move along any further at this stage.

      • Connor says:

        Here, here.

        In my limited years, I have never seen such passionate debate about a miniature/board game. Hopefully, everyone here is a great sport too and will have lots of fun with their friends playtesting the rules until November, when Christmas comes early.

      • sideofiron says:


        Guards do come onto the pitch with Dreadball Gloves – They are called Keepers.

        As you have said – Jake has decided ‘for the moment’. But as an investor voicing my concerns is the only way I have to influence those decisions. I might not have years of professional game design experience (though I have designed more than a few as a hobby) but I do have 25+ years of playing games. As a customer and backer of the project it is a good thing to be able to engage with the designer and voice issues.

        Trust me – Blind adherence to the almighty will of Jake is somewhere I have been – On the original Launch Rules and on the Zero Dice Catch Saga, but we have been engaged as a community to provide feedback, and that is what I am doing. I have identified an issue for my club and the true value of this project is not measured in how dedicated Jake’s fanboys are – but by the fantastic way he actually takes considerations on board and responds with his thoughts.

        My post here asks for Jake to clarify how he sees the change might be a bad thing. Not in terms of fluff (despite the poor communication of the concepts to this point) – but from a ‘gameplay mechanic’ perspective. Something that hasn’t been covered in the spiel above.

        So Back Off! I’m really interested in Jake’s thoughts ; )

        • Bidge says:


          Why the hell should I back off! Is your opinion the only one that counts? I see that you are still happy to argue your case with other people who have a contradictory position to yours, despite telling me to back off! Away and boil yer head.

          Yes and as gamers we all have designed hobby games for our mates/groups to play, its part of what many gamers do, so don’t try and trump me with your experience, because you have designed something for your mates you believe you know better than me (both our opinions are as valid as each others).Try sticking to discussion, rather than the petty one upping (of you’ve designed games for your mates), because yes it is good to be able discuss issues/concerns with the designer and I whole heartedly support it, as in the end, as backers it gives us better games, but your opinion is not the only side to this discussion, as can be seen by the amount of people on both sides of the debate here.

          Follow your own advice and maybe others will do the same. I thought we were all adults as well as backers and could actually debate this, but it seems you want any dissenting voice to your opinion to shut up, so that only people with your side of the discussion can shout so loud that the rule gets changed. You may be identifying an issue for your club, but its equally as strong an issue for many that strikers should NOT be able to slam and we are allowed to voice that too.

          Well as a backer I am voicing my right to say that I am happy with the rule and the explanation and that it makes sense to me.

          Nice of you to resort the childish “fan boy” shit that people love to tout when someone argues that a rule is correct or that they like something a designer has done. It really is such a lazy insult to use whilst couched behind being polite.

          So lets debate as adults and maybe one of our positions will change, but don’t dare tell me to back off!

        • sideofiron says:

          Settle dude…. did you miss the
          ; )
          at the end??? Apparently… What I am saying is that I asked Jake about his thoughts on the impact on the mechanics of the game rather than the fluff. An issue that wasn’t raised in his previous post…
          Christ… Touchy Much?

        • sideofiron says:

          I tell you one thing though Bidge… aggressively attacking anyone who’s opinion differs isn’t going to help people flock to the KS… So now… and I don’t mean this in jest this time…

          Back Off..

    • Quirkworthy says:

      Firstly, let’s be polite about this. Passion is wonderful, but we can all be passionate with manners at the same time. No pistols at dawn, thanks.

      How will it be bad for the game?

      Allowing Strikers to Slam breaks the player role system. If Strikers can Slam, then anyone can do anything. That idea is in direct conflict with the principle of the role system and cannot exist alongside it – you must pick one or the other. Arguing for Slamming Strikers is arguing for the removal of the role system entirely. It’s not that everyone becomes Jacks, it’s that no such distinction exists – everyone is just a player.

      The role system is one of the core concepts of the game, so without it the game becomes much less like DreadBall. However, there are worse issues. The role system provides a number of short cuts that save time in play. Without it the game would be slower.

      As is mentioned in a comment below, someone has had the ability for Strikers to Slam very poorly as a house rule. It has not been used in over 120 games. If I have a rule in a design that is so rarely used then it flags up warning signs that it is a darling that needs murdering, whatever it actually does. This sort of thing happens all the time in game design – you just don’t see most of them. You cannot practically include everything in any game design, and must pick and choose which things provide enough fun game play to warrant the weight of rules and the slowing of the game (all additional rules slow the game).

      Another problem is that if this is modelled within the game then you should logically model dozens of other, equally rare and unlikely possibilities. Why pick on just this one? This sort of rules creep, where increasingly unlikely oddments are added to a system as it matures is commonplace. Experience tells me that prevention here is better than cure.

      • sideofiron says:

        Thanks for the response Jake.

        To me, it does feel that the fluff has been invented to fit the game, and not the other way around. This is partly because we have received an evolving rational as to ‘why’ the rule is the way it is and partly because that way around, I at least understand that the rule exists because you are committed to it.

        I do feel an absolute exclusion is a waste of the novel dice pool system you have. This carries back to my point about coaching dice being able to save an otherwise impossible action.

        In a situation where you only have Specialists at either end and the Jack in the middle, it does seem to make sense that you might restrict the specialists creating a simple model of who can do what… but then you have already broken the simple model and introduced Keepers allowing a guard who can catch the ball.

        To the question of “why pick this one” I would say that obviously, the rule is something that a number of players feel very strongly about – whether there is enough support to justify a change is yet to be seen. But much the same as the Launch rule was changed, the Prone Cage had to be fixed (sorry about that one – I wish I had never thought of it – and certainly wish I had never advertised the tactic) and more recently the change to give Jacks ‘slide’ and the option to opt out of catching a ball.

        A side note – The other thing that niggles (and I promise it is related) is the application of DBX Sudden Death rules… Strikers just get removed from the board? The only logical reason is because they cant hurt anyone (they actually can – but with the ball). But why do they cease to be eligible targets?

        • Quirkworthy says:

          Changing the launch rules, etc was to fix more general exploits and problems. Keepers are a darling that should have been murdered, but slipped through the net. I would not include them if I wrote the game today.

          The problem with Strikers being left in Sudden Death is that it just drags the whole thing out and you end up playing a game that has a pretty obvious conclusion – you’re just going through the motions for an extra half hour. They can, in theory, already hurt people with the ball, but their ability to damage people is so limited that they are really just prey for the opposition rather than a serious offensive player.

          I tried this out with Strikers being able to stomp but not slam. What happened was that the Striker seldom got to act as the TAT were limited. When the Striker’s team had more hitty players then they got used preferentially. About the only thing the Striker did was to use his more effective abilities at avoidance to drag out his fairly inevitable demise. Eventually he’ll get caught, but not till I’ve spend half an hour running round trying to get hold of him. Now this may be realistic, but it’s no fun at all. It’s slow, it’s boring, and it doesn’t feel like DreadBall. Allowing them a weak attack and leaving them on isn’t going to be enough to change this. Taking them off is simple, fast and lets you quickly get down to the real fight.

      • Koltoroc says:

        I don’t see the role system at the core of the game, I see it only as part of the “listbuilding” aspect. Also, it has already been weakened by the keeper role.

        We are currently experimenting with allowing a striker to slam (and related actions) with a -1 mod and they can’t move at all as part of a slam.. In most cases that makes it highly dangerous unless you are outnumbering the enemy, although forge fathers quite enjoy the ability. We have been playing only a few games so far but it tends to be used not that often, but still around 1-2 times per game. It rarely causes injuries, but it is a quite useful ability to push players out of the way. And it can backfire spectacularly.

        for DBO we also added a foul for strikers slamming (regular ref check) but we are not sure slamback needs a foul, although we consider one for the ball carrier only.

        so far we consider this a significant improvement, because it opens tactical choice, at a significant risk. Strikers are still mainly used for ball handling, but have a place in other situations as well. That is not an issue with guards since you most likely will always have someone to beat up, but a striker in a bad position without this mod is just a punching bag. It doesn’t break the game for what we can tell, and I actually think this largely solves the FF striker issue without changing the FF striker, as long as slambacks are not a foul.

        Jake, I have noticed a few times now that when you design something to be good at “x”, you tend to do it in absolutes, not just making it good at “x” but making it only able to do “x”, even if the item in question should be able to do other things, even if it is not particularly good. I have this issue with strikers, I *do* have it with guards, but the in universe explanation is ok to look over it, and I do have the same issue with rapid fire weapons in deadzone, especially in conjunction with constructs. The elegant solution, in my opinion, in both cases is to go away a bit from the absolutes and just (heavily) discourage the unwanted use, but still leave the tactical option to do so.

        You switch the choice from a tactical choice to a listbuilding choice that way, and this leads to a metagame aspect that I highly dislike.

        to be honest, I think this “designing in absolutes” may just be one of those “darlings that should be murdered”. I think it is a good starting point, but needs killing eventually depending on the context.

      • Angus says:

        Well I have been arguing for the removal of the role system. So I have no real issue with breaking it. Perhaps with time and experience a convict player might become a striker, jack or guard in the true sense of the word but right now they are just people playing in the position in the team.

  15. Craig Johnson says:

    Hear hear, otherwise we just made strikers into a good jack, Im with jake

  16. David Gannon says:

    “Now as Strikers can’t Slam they have to be good at handling the ball otherwise they are useless on the pitch. That follows naturally. However, it is a consequence, not a defining feature.”

    You are confusing the He** out of me here. If this is your logic, how do you excuse the Forge Fathers’ pathetic Strikers?? Skill 5+?? That is not “good at handling the ball” under *any* circumstances, unless you are a batter in Major League Baseball. And that’s about as far from Dreadball as one can get and still stay in a team vs. team game. But, I digress. You say a Striker has to be good at handling the ball because they cannot slam. It is a consequence of not being able to slam. Okay, there it is in black and white (depending on your browser settings).

    Can we have a revisit of the poor, crippled Forge Father strikers now? They’ve been in the rubbish bin of Dreadball long enough!

    • Quirkworthy says:

      The FF are an issue, as you say, but a different one. They also exist in DreadBall not DBX, and the FF team in DBX is different and (because the rules in DBX are different) works differently.

      If you see what I mean.

      • Vinsssounet says:

        Jake you can’t imagine how happy I am just to read you saying that FF are an issue =)
        It makes me hope they will get bettered at some point.
        I totally understand the logic behind “waiting some time, letting the game live” before deciding if it’s worth making changes (that’s why I won’t say, for now, that I believe Nameless to be overpowered 😉 😉 ).

        Now I think the Forge Fathers had a long run and it seems admitted by a vast majority that they are barely competitive.

        Do you think we can hope, in a foreseeable future, that they get helped ?

        Thanks a lot for that wonderful game (my personal favourite !) and sorry for the slight change of subject, but reading this gave me that little hope !

  17. Owesome says:

    Strikers are one of three player types in the game: Guards, Jacks and Strikers. This distinction between player roles applies in DBX as much as it does in the DreadBall played in the main arenas and on the tri-vid. It is a core feature of how the game works in all its forms, in both background terms and board game rules. If the player roles are not present then you’re not playing DreadBall.

    This is really the only argument that counts.
    Yes, a soccer player can pick up the ball and run with it, but the instant they do so they’re not playing Soccer anymore, they’re playing something else.

    • Angus says:

      That was how rugby started.

      One boy at the school picked up the football during a match and ran with it. When he was told he couldn’t do that, he replied, “I can do anything I want, my daddy is rich!”

      And in a game with no rules, what is to stop you from doing so?

      • Blax says:

        This is best example of not allowing. Yes Rugby started because a football player picked up the ball. There was nothing to stop him but the rules of football but when he did so he ceased to be playing football anymore.
        Now DBX has no rules so you could say anything goes. But it is still a sptirt that has identity and that identity makes the money and to keep that identity you need some rules otherwise its just a brawl.

  18. doug says:

    These arguments are simply retroactively trying to justify a game mechanic. That’s it. Jake wanted highly distinct positions for the game to work the way it does. Any qualitative reasoning for this is just backwards justification.

    It is clear from all evidence provided so far that in-universe strikers can start as jacks (see Goblins and their MVP). Therefore they already have slamming skills. Prima Donna specifically says many guards are afflicted by this, not just Helder. Mechanically it turns a guard into a jack. But how could a guard gain ball handling skills? Apparently ball handling skills are easier to remember than slamming skills. This alone shows that players can change positions, that people aren’t born strikers or jacks.

    Given how crappy Xtreme players are in general, I’m not sure why they even have proper strikers. Some of those players are as good as DBO players of the same position, equipment not withstanding.

    Forgefather Strikers are Strength 3+. That clearly contradicts the argument that strikers are too weedy to slam.
    Veer-myn and Zzor strikers are Skill 5+. That clearly contradicts the argument that strikers are all about being skilled ball handlers.

    The other argument to use is that if you’ve got a ‘natural’ striker, then you can easily put them in the position of jack and train them to slam.

    I find it bizarre that this argument exists. We have a game that can give a GUARD (someone incapable of using the ball in the same way a striker ‘can’t’ slam) a dreadball glove and somehow they can actually pick up the ball. But a striker can’t punch someone.

    Because catching a 200mph ball is a much easier skill to retain than PUNCHING SOMEONE. We’re all arguing it’s entirely fine for slamming types (keepers and Prima Donnas) to retain the highly specialised ball handling skills that apparently exist, but that a striker will never retain the ability to hit someone effectively.

    IMO this is a huge conflation. No one wants to accept the fact that there isn’t a very rational basis for this fact, that it’s entirely a mechanical conceit to create the distinction between positions we have. The same is true of being required to try to catching something – there’d be no way to create a rule in a sport to force someone to catch a ball because you couldn’t define when they were required to without putting unrealistic expectations on them (if the ball is within 1 metre of you at any time, try to catch).

    For every ‘reason’ given for why a striker just 100% can never hit someone, there is an argument that negates it from preexisting material.

    And don’t get me started on the background describing strikers as the superstars of the game yet the majority of MVPs are Jacks and Guards. All of these issues stem from one central design choice – to make strikers so specialized and extreme that they can’t slam and are almost never MVPs because then they’d be way too good.

    As for the immutability of so-called sacred cows:

    Game uses racial stats (ie all FF have the same profile) – xtreme removes racial stats
    Players must attempt to catch balls – xtreme says no
    Jacks suck – xtreme gives jacks slide
    Launched balls must be caught – launched balls now slam you (all versions)

    Things considered unchangeable in the original game have or are being changed.

    All this effort went into making specific actions fouls which would be a perfect place to put a striker slam – yet it was arbitrarily removed as even attemptible.

    • Bjorn Bonten says:

      I still think people view a slam as sinply hitting someone which it isn’t. Im of a tall and wiry physique, a buddy of mine is a big burly guy… I can punch him alright but I wont quite hurt him, also his retaliation would floor me probably. So while I can shove him aside just a little bit I in no way can get the momentum to make him really go down or knock him back. Ergo I’d suck as a Guard…
      Also I think its a conscious choice (in game) even in DBX that strikers aren’t allowed to slam, what would be the point in having a ball then? Might as well call it DreadBrawl and get it over with just hitting the oposition.

      • sideofiron says:

        You make a good point about being a crappy guard and being out of your depth against a burley bloke. But… I wonder how you would fare against if your opponent was the same build as you? I reckon the odds would be much more even.

        What if you had two buddies who were holding back your new opponents arms?

        Now place your opponent on the ground prone with your two friends helping and tell me you can’t inflict some pain.

  19. David Gannon says:

    As for Strikers not being able to Slam, this dovetails perfectly with Guards are not able to throw the ball to score. Neither player type can do the other’s specialty. This is called “game balance” and it works well. Always remember, your Strikers *can* hurt another player very simply. Just throw the ball at them. Granted this will end your turn unless the ball manages to scatter right to one of your own guys and he catches it… Even the Judwan have this option, though they have to target the opposing player’s square *and miss the throw*! And as the rule says, the Judwan player will feel very bad about his action…

  20. doug says:

    You can definitely justify it from a quantitative mechanical abstraction, there’s no argument there.

    You cannot justify it from a qualitative background perspective and have anyone believe you.

    People are conflating those two positions, but they aren’t equivalent at all. The issues most people have here is that the second point above does not gel with the first, so we are left with a large disconnect within the game where it doesn’t match the setting.

    You aren’t going to convince anyone that a muscly burly forgefather is incapable of punching someone because he’s in the striker position…

    Guards have a clearly explainable reason for being incapable of picking up the ball – they lack the glove that’s required to do so. There is no ‘slam glove’ in the game and therefore nothing like that for a striker. Just look at the glove on the convict team strikers and tell me they couldn’t impale someone’s head with it.

    Or for that matter, how much skill is required to jump up and down on a prone player’s head as part of a Stomp?

  21. Rob Clarke says:

    To. Add to my last post here’s the full striker rules we use ( in the style of Jake Thornton)

    A striker can make a slam action. ( 3 dice strength test (X))
    -2 for being a striker
    -1 for other models in there threat hex’s (not counting the model being slammed)
    A striker may NOT run into a slam ( not even 1 hex)

    Its -2 to show how poor strikers are at slamming
    Its -1 because that’s the same as all other models
    Strikers cannot move while slamming because they are not trained to do so. This also means that your likely to need 2 actions to perform a slam further showing the strikers lack of training and skill.

    If your thinking why would I use 2 actions to allow a striker to make a 1 dice slam.

    The answer is you wouldn’t. Its a crazy idea. My group Hasplays upwards of 20 games a month for the last 6 months and I don’t think it has ever happened.

    Like I said its just there for completion.

    • Bidge says:

      If I were to do it in our games bud that is exactly the rules I would adopt and due to the ongoing debate it is the same rules set that I planned in my head as would be most appropriate. However that said I am still of the opinion that “Strikers don’t Slam” and am happy with the current rule.

      Based upon the fact that it is such a penalisation that it would happy so rarely, it is better for the rules just to disallow it and keep the rule book short and clean flowing. I don’t want a tomb like a GW rule book and keeping it out of the game altogether makes sense to me (for many reasons including rarity) and keeps its cleaner as its so rarely going to happen.

      But good contribution.

    • Quirkworthy says:

      Rob’s comment makes a compelling argument against having the rule. 120+ games and never used? Surely that is a darling that needs murdering. If I kept every rule I could possibly think of regardless of whether it was ever used or not how long do you think the rule book would be? Would it be practical? Would you be happy paying ten times the price for the many volumes of phone directory it would become?

      One of the key skills of game design is knowing what to leave out, and this is a perfect example.

  22. Having read all of the above comments, I remain convinced that strikers NOT slamming makes acceptable gaming sense. It may or may not be realistic but dreadball is a game, not a real sport. It needs boundaries and mechanics- the tag line of ‘no rules’ means actual disciplinary rules etc provided by a governing body, not gaming rules.

  23. If it makes people feel better think of it like this:

    A Striker can slam but they’re so bad at it they start at -25 dice. That’s a lot of coaching dice you’re gonna have to throw at that outside chance of a Slam (which represents the extra training the Striker has put in on the training ground). 😛 Even when not taken to silly extremes such as that I think the point that stands here is that most strikers would be so bad at Slams, which are hard hits and not just shoves in the back, that it just isn’t worth representing in the game. In training they concentrate on ball-handling and finesse training, not the brute force required for a Slam.

    For myself, although the wording that Strikers ‘can’t’ slam does seem to be particularly arbitrary I cannot think of one instance where I would actually choose to make a slam or slam-back with a striker in place of dodge or steal. The exception being Forgefather’s of course but even then the fact is that a Slam is just not a part of a Striker’s game and even a FF Striker would be trained to use finesse rather than strength to escape situations. That’s why they play that position after all!

    I think if an update appeared that allowed for different sub-positions (such as ‘running strikers’ passing strikers’ and ‘physical strikers’ as an example to represent different styles of players within positions) that would be cool as it would allow those that wanted to to make the basic game as complex as they would like it to be. As it stands I do not see anything wrong with the game as it is.

    • Just seen Rob’s comment above about his House Rule. Must’ve missed that before I wrote my reply as it basically sums up exactly what I was trying to say. 🙂

  24. Doug says:

    Unfortunately you’re just creating strawmen to shoot down.

    You have to convince people that a striker MUST be represented the way you’ve shown. Otherwise it’s circular reasoning. You argument is ‘strikers suck at slamming because I’ve created rules that show strikers suck at slamming’.

    I could just as easily say ‘strikers are great at slamming – they get 10 dice to slams. See the rule says they’re good at slamming therefore they’re good at slamming.’ Fallacy is fallacious.

    Jacks can become strikers. Therefore, a striker should be able to slam. GUARDS can become strikers.

    Guards can get ball handling skills just by becoming keepers. I thought the argument was that you need really good ball handling skills to catch balls. Amazing that keepers can get this.

    Remember that slam includes sucker punch and stomp, neither of which require anywhere near the bruteforce that a head to head slam would require.

    An Asterian jack is Strength 5+ and can punch people. A Forgefather Striker is Strength 3+ and can’t. You cannot use the weedy argument if you’re giving positions rules that contradict that.

  25. Jesse De Vaan says:

    I personally agree with Jake, a Striker could (almost) never take down an other player, unless he was helped, and that’s included with him giving negative modifiers to Dodges and Slambacks with his threat hexes.

  26. LavaJohn says:

    Solution: Strikers may slam, but with zero dice. There, problem solved. You can do it, but you always lose, short of a counter-slamming striker, then you get a tie as they slap-fight each other. Action wasted or Striker pasted. Done.

    • If I could slamback with a striker on a zero dice check, I would consider keeping coaching dice for them. I can never seem to get a Forge Father striker anywhere useful without being slammed to pieces unless someone over committed in there previous rush.

  27. Doug says:

    Again, strawman.

    If I jumped on your head while you were held down by two mates, I’m pretty sure I’d do a lot of damage to you. Stomping on someone’s head can create horrific injuries. You don’t need much skill to do it.

    • Vinsssounet says:

      Well then with your reasoning we can allow everyone to try to Jump without the Jump ability with negative modifiers. Surely jumping is up to anyone ? We can allow passing beyond 12 Hexes, with bigger modifiers. We should also allow regular players to Brush Aside like a Giant. After all, isn’t a Teraton kind of a Giant to a Goblin ? Maybe anyone should also be allowed to try to Dash in any circumstances ?

      Point is, if we start imagining a way a player could make an action the rules do not allow him to do, you will find plenty.
      It does not mean you should start to find the proper modifier to make all those actions possible.

      This is not a Role Playing Game, it is a Board Game.

      I am puzzled why people are focusing on Strikers not being able to slam while there are dozens of other abilities any player could potentially attempt with the appropriate modifiers.

      • Blax says:

        This is a very good point and I think the main one Jake is trying to make. These type of modifies would allow you to do everything but that would be a slow game and probably not much fun and IMO would give me a headache remebering all those modifiers. Very flood gate type situation. Where would it stop? And why?

      • sideofiron says:

        This is a terrible point… For anyone who has ever played contact sport, hitting someone (even badly) is not some amazing trait like leaping over an opponent like a circus freak.

        Jake disagrees… that much is clear. But whether you agree or not – it is a fact that for some people the disconnect is a bridge too far and it detracts from the game.

        For some that may make the game ‘unplayable’ and that is fine. For others, myself included it is still a great game, but there are remain elements which seem imperfect.

        Maybe house rules are the solution. But unless the conversation is had, nobody knows just what the breakup is. Call it utilitarian, but if you are marketing a product with an element of contention in what it should look like, there is value in knowing what the majority market wants.

        The Illegal Procedure rule in Blood Bowl was almost universally ignored in every tournament I ever played.

        Monopoly fines getting paid into the centre and being awarded to the next player to land on free parking is a staple modification – at least across Australia.

        Which leads me to an interesting topic which Id like to see Jake discuss one day. When does a house rule become the norm? What utility exists in a Standardised Rule Set and when does house ruling completely change the game?

        • Quirkworthy says:

          The last para is an interesting topic for a post. Or perhaps more than one topic 😉

        • Vinsssounet says:

          “This is a terrible point… For anyone who has ever played contact sport, hitting someone (even badly) is not some amazing trait like leaping over an opponent like a circus freak.”

          You’re trying to make a point sound ridiculous by deforming it and making it look like it’s asking some skill that requires special training with a Jedi Master or the Solar Circus.

          Of course jumping over a standing person isn’t achievable by anyone. But surely jumping over a person lying on the ground certainly is.

          Simple theory : if we were to ask random people to jump successfully over someone lying on the ground, or punching someone /trained to combat/ and able to defend themselves effectively, I do believe we’d see a lot of people jumping easily, and a lot of people hurting their fist.

          So alright, let’s not allow jumping over standing players without the skill (even though the whole modifier theory does not point at all in that direction, it would suggest to allow it with the proper modifier, even if it is -10). But what about lying players ?

          And what about the other things I mentioned ? I basically gave you a bunch of examples covering different abilities, and you chose one half of one (jumping over a standing person instead of just jumping) to jump to the conclusion that this is a terrible point.

          I think it is a terrible counter-argument 😉

          Making an analogy with real sport doesn’t help either. Considering how easily soccer player pretend they’re in the worst pain they ever felt after being barely touched on the shoulder by the back of the hand of an opponent, I don’t think you need to take acting classes to simulate someone just committed a fool. So, the “Taking A Dive” skill does represent someone used to do this a lot, but there’s no logical reason to prevent anyone else to try it… with the proper modifier.

          That’s only another example, and others could be found.

        • sideofiron says:

          What does Jump allow again? I thought it was actually launching yourself over a standing player. Happy to be corrected though.

        • sideofiron says:

          And I quote ‘the most agile players can leap over thier friends or opponents in dramatic displays of acrobatic skill’

        • sideofiron says:

          Oh… And soccer? Not exactly a full contact sport…

        • Blax says:

          As strange as it seems Football (Soccer) is classed as a full contact sport. But thats a whole other ball game 😉

      • Vinsssounet says:

        Errr sideofron this is becoming anything but a fair argument.

        What is the relation between the fact that soccer isn’t a full contact sport (even if apparently it is, but that’s equally irrelevant to the point) and the fact that pretending to fall does not require particular training ?
        All I say is that if we allow Striker to Slam for the simple fact that anyone could slam even if they suck at it, then we can allow a lot of other things (including Taking A Dive) that, obviously, anyone could attempt too without training.

        And, on Jumping, that allows Jumping over a standing opponent, which is, no arguing, skillful, but also allow to jump over players on the ground, which is, and this is my point, something anyone could attempt to do. So, on that part, your answer is to quote the rulebook : “‘the most agile players can leap over their friends or opponents in dramatic displays of acrobatic skill’”.

        Ok. So, if I follow you, if the rulebook says that jumping over a falling player is a dramatic display of acrobatic skill, then it is.
        But if the rulebook says that Striker can’t slam because they are too bad at it, you have a problem with that.

        I’m sorry but it seems to me you take the parts of the rulebook that are consistent with your own desire, and discard the rest when it’s not pointing in your direction, even though the whole time we are following your own logic =( (being, allowing actions to any player that could try them without training in real life, even if they might be really bad at it)

        Furthermore, we’re still leaving behind any other examples :
        – anyone could attempt to dash anytime, even if they might be bad at it
        – there’s no particular reason not to allow passing to teammates beyond 12 Hexes, we just need to apply the proper modifiers
        – in DBX where there is no rules, anyone could Punt like a Keeper
        – anyone could try to Brush Aside (pushing other players to move them out of an Hex. only Giants can do it). With the right assist, it’s possible to anyone.
        – etc etc

        The main idea behind what i’m saying is that, it does not matter if you could reasonably imagine how an action is doable in your head by any player : you will find too many things that would need too many rules, just to end up with terrible possible actions that would be used once every 100 games in desperate situations.

        I hope I make sense =)

        And again sorry if it might sound passionate. No intention of sounding condescending or harsh !

      • Doug says:

        You’re starting from fallacious premises to begin with. Anyone CAN dash whenever they want – except jacks when slamming or throwing and apparently that’s going to be a jack standard thing ANYWAY (one of those ‘things that won’t be changed’ that is changing).

        The jump ability isn’t just jumping, it’s jumping over standing players, but I don’t see why people couldn’t attempt to jump over prone players (or the ball for that matter – why should a player have to avoid a whole hex with the ball on the ground?).

        Throwing is curtailed by the design of the ball and the method of launch – the glove.

        The simple fact is – jacks become strikers, guards become strikers. The argument is completely null that strikers CAN’T slam as it’s very clear they CAN. Asterian jacks are St5+ and can slam, FF strikers are St3+ and can’t. Weedy is null. So strikers not slamming is an artificial limitation, one which should be a foul given the precedents for things in the game.

        I have never disputed the legitimacy of strikers not slamming from a game mechanic perspective. I don’t know many that have. The issue is entirely to do with how this does not gel with the game as presented in the Warpath universe. Within its OWN descriptions of things.

        There’s nothing describing why strikers can’t slam. The only way we know they can’t is because slam and its derivatives aren’t available to them. For a game that went to a lot of effort to model the ‘role-playing’ aspects of it as you describe, this area stands out.

        You’re focusing on the board game aspects. But a whole list of fouls specific to the inuniverse rules and strikers can’t slam as a foul? A campaign system built around the progression of your characters? These sound like more than ‘board game’ concepts to me.

        Why didn’t jake just say you can’t slam people in the back? Or that you can’t slam people on the ground? We’re arguing over the value judgements made about why some things are and aren’t there. In our group about the only foul ever performed with regularity is the sneak because it is far safer. So if fouls are hardly used, by the arguments used by many here, why would they exist at all?

        If a stomp is performed once every couple of games and is considered important enough to warrant a half page set of rules, why is a striker slamming not? They can both equally be desperation moves only useful in a few circumstances.

        The precedents come from within the game already, which is why this area is so noticeable by its absence. Strikers often being armed with giant punch daggers doesn’t help the argument much either…

        • Quirkworthy says:

          “There’s nothing describing why strikers can’t slam.”

          Not true. The above post describes several possible reasons why – you just choose not to believe any of them.

        • Vinsssounet says:

          Again, anything but a fair argument.

          “You’re starting from fallacious premises to begin with. Anyone CAN dash whenever they want – except jacks when slamming or throwing and apparently that’s going to be a jack standard thing ANYWAY”.
          I find it hard to believe anyone could write that.
          So, “anyone” can dash “anytime”… “except” Jacks “before” slamming or throwing. Okay. So how is it a fallacious argument ?
          I’m all for exchanging point of views and stuff, but that kind of bad faith doesn’t help.
          The fact that it might not be true in the future is a completely separate thing and certainly does not make my statement false, even less fallacious, thank you very much !

          Now about jump I just said exactly what you said, in substance : jumping over standing players is skillful, jumping over prones is not. Thus, if we allow Strikers to Slam cause it’s reasonable they could, we also allow jumping over Prones (and ball, yeah) to anyone. We said the same thing so I don’t see why you tried correcting me on that, unless you read only half of what I wrote and just went on opposing whatever I would say.

          I don’t even think we particularly disagree.

          You just seem to hold to the idea that Strikers being reasonably able to Slam means they should be able to try it.
          It’s a fine opinion, really.
          All I say is that if we go down that road, we must allows all sort of other things. Well, I’ll give you a compromise and say, ok, the ball example I’d concede, there’s a glove/ball reason. Not buying it personally but for the sake of fairly arguing.

          We still have Brush Aside : why not allow it to anyone ? Can’t we imagine it’s possible ? With the right assist ?
          Why not throwing the ball at nothing ? It’s against training according to the rulebook. But surely it could be done as a fool. Like you suggest Slamming as a fool for Strikers.
          Etc etc.

          If you agree that allowing that Striker-Slam raises a lot more to allow, then we just agreed on something. If not well I think you’re fooling yourself.

          My belief is that Gameplay matters more Roleplay in a Board Game, up to a point. It’s easy to imagine what a game changer a Forge Father Striker able to Slam would be. That “small” change would change the balance of the game deeply, just for the sake of being a bit more realistic ? Seems really a lot more annoying than interesting.

          And again, keeping in mind we’d be talking about Strikers slamming with a big negative modifier ! I really hardly understand why the fuss.

          Oh and it’s not because your group only uses the Sneak foul that everyone does the same. I use all kind of foul regularly in my games. You just took a personal example and turned it into a generality. Again, hardly fair arguing !

        • Vinsssounet says:

          Also wanted to add on this particular paragraph :

          “The simple fact is – jacks become strikers, guards become strikers. The argument is completely null that strikers CAN’T slam as it’s very clear they CAN. Asterian jacks are St5+ and can slam, FF strikers are St3+ and can’t. Weedy is null.”

          Strength 3+ or 5+ isn’t relative to the ability to Slam. It’s relative of the inherent trait of the race itself.
          What is relative to the capacity of Slamming is the modifier. For example, the Rats, as a race, are very bad at holding the ball : they just aren’t an agile race. Though they have Strikers, with a +1 modifier at various ball-related thing. That’s the translation of their training.

          Same goes for FF Strength. They are a strong race. But just because you are strong doesn’t mean you can effectively punch someone with the right technique. Should they train to do that, they would be better, than let’s say, Zees. But it’s only their natural potential.

          It’s important to understand that : stats are only representative of the race/physical condition. Not of the training.

          “So strikers not slamming is an artificial limitation, one which should be a foul given the precedents for things in the game.”

          Let’s think further. If regular DB allows Slam as a foul, then it’s only natural in DBX all Strikers can slam, as there is no foul. So basically, Strikers in DBX just became Jacks ! It’s very easy to see that shall Strikers be able to Slam in DBX, Jacks are becoming a LOT less interesting, not to say close to useless. Even with the current trend of giving them more use, they simply lose their entire role. So in order to make them more interesting, you need to give them something else again. That makes things even more complicated when you know DBX teams can play DBO, and vice versa : Strikers Slamming makes such a difference that teams would NOT be balanced between the 2 games, because the roles would not work the same between them : in DBO you would have Strikers, Jacks, Guards, and in DBX, Jacks, different Jacks, and Guards.

          All in all, that whole idea seems to raise so many troubles !

          Thanks for reading and cheers ! Sorry if anything sounds harsh. It’s easy to get carried 😉

  28. mastertugunegb says:

    I blame the non-standard Dreadball “Gloves”, personally. I mean look at the DBO Veer-myn Striker and Marauder Goblin Jack gloves… and now the DBX Convict Scum “Gloves”. They practically scream “shiv me”.

    I, personally am OK with the Strikers not being able to Slam. Sure, Keepers seem to be able to at least pick it up and cannon the Dreadball across the pitch, making them highly indirect fire weapon emplacements on legs at best, but it’s at least balanced by the thing scattering a few times before it can be caught.

    The thing is with Strikers, a penalty (big or small) doesn’t make it “even” with a Keeper. Not by a long shot. If it’s a normal Slam action, then enough Coaching Dice and it may as well BE a Jack or a Guard, even if the Striker can’t move at all first.

    All a Striker has to do in this scenario is double a Slam, with whatever negative mods included, probably by fluking good rolls vs really really bad opposed ones, and he’s got one over Jacks, Keepers and Guards. Not because he’s better at doing it (obviously) but because he can injure ppl without throwing a ball just. like. everyone. else.

    At the very least they shouldn’t suck at regular Slams, they should have their own Keeper Punt Equivalent Striker move instead. Here’s a few ideas:

    Kamikaze – Striker Only

    You cannot Kamikaze the Referee.

    The Striker must Run in a straight line (as if he were throwing a Dreadball at a target opposing player,, taking the shortest path as usual, picking which one if multiple paths are equally short) towards an opponent, declaring that player as his target before moving as if to Run. If he reaches the opponent without altering his original course, then he can complete his Kamikaze action, which resembles a Slam… if a Slam was done by a crazy man performing a sacrifice move-thru by throwing themselves through the air at their foe and hoping for the best.

    Guards and Jacks know how to Slam, and don’t see the sense in performing such a stupid move.

    Kamikaze is a 3 dice Strength Test (x)
    -1 if moved less than 2 hexes to get to the target
    -1 if opponent is a Jack or Guard
    -1 per opposing player threatening the hex you are in (ignoring your target, maximum of -2)

    Slamback: a 3 dice Strength Test
    +1 if the player is a Guard
    -1 per opposing player threatening the hex you are in (ignoring your target, maximum of -2)

    +1 if the player is a Striker
    -1 per opposing player threatening the hex you are in (ignoring your target, maximum of -2)

    Compare the number of successes to find the outcome.

    Draw: Opponent Turns to face. Attacker falls prone in the same hex.

    Slamback Wins: As per normal Slamback, but losing player falls prone, even if they have Steady.

    Slamback Doubles: As per normal Slamback, but player also is also considered having the Fragile rule for the Armour Check. (No effect if already has Fragile)

    Dodge Wins: The winner may turn to face any direction. ALSO the losing player falls prone, even if they have Steady.

    Dodge Doubles: The winner may move 1 hex in any direction and does not need to Evade to do so.

    IF he does move, the losing player falls prone in the hex the winner just vacated, and must make an Armour Check, even if they had Steady. He is also considered to have the Fragile rule for this Armour Check(No further effect if already has Fragile).

    IF the winner decides to stay put, then the player falls prone in their own hex, but still makes the Armour Check, and is still considered Fragile(No further effect if already has Fragile).

    KamiKaze wins: As per normal Slam wins, but winner must follow up, and falls Prone in the hex vacated by the losing player.

    Kamikaze Doubles: As per normal Slam Doubles, but winner must follow up, falls prone in the vacated hex, and ALSO makes an Armour Check, as if they had the Fragile rule. (No further effect if already has Fragile rule)

    • Blax says:

      IMO Problem with your kami rule is you are solving one “problem” with the same by allowing only strikers to perform it. This is the same restriction that people are against in the first place.
      Pretty sure enough games of dreadball would make any player a bit unstable.

      And would it actually get used? How often?

      • sideofiron says:

        Probably about as often as distracting the ref.

        : )

      • I would probably use that action a fair bit I tend to use Forge Father strikers as inferior replacements for the jacks. They never tend to stay on long and found I get more use from them applying penalties to peoples slambacks or covering someone’s back so there slammed instead. Even as a skill like keeper gives them something worthwhile to attempt to get rather than skills reliant on Speed.

      • mastertugunegb says:

        It’s not so much a restriction, as a “Why would Jacks or Guards bother when Slam is so much better for them than this?” and it was just an idea.

        I just don’t believe that should Strikers ever be allowed to hurt someone without throwing a ball at them that they should be as effective as a Jack or Guard. Otherwise it makes Keepers get a raw deal and we’re back to where we started.

  29. mastertugunegb says:

    Okay, one idea. 😉

  30. ralaric says:

    It makes sense to me as well Jake. In the world of professional sports, a persons’ role is defined by their skill set. If you were really playing DB in a real life setting, you wouldn’t be focused on slamming everyone to the ground, you’d be trying to score points to end the game so you don’t die!

  31. Torkel says:

    I play Veermyn, and I use strikers in slams all the time. They’re great at it. They’re just not the ones delivering the knockout. Because they’re strikers.

    I like to envision my striker assisting slams by holding enemy players, yanking their helmets just before they get hit, or pushing them into the incoming freight train.
    What they don’t do is try to be freight trains themselves. That’s because they train and dress for a completely different purpose.

  32. Pingback: Dreadball – Playing Xtreme! | DeathWatch Studios

  33. Ian says:

    A thought. I like the idea of a defensive slam play. Only just got the game so yet to practice. My idea… Which i shall try out….. It is to allow guards a two hex move to slam an opposing player who has moved. Its like the run interference play but is allowed every turn (in the opponents turn) but only for guards. The normal rules for slamming/slam back/dodging would be followed, expect the slamming defensive guards cannot perform any actions prior. Hence they cannot evade and commit the defensive slam or react to an opponents attack then subsequently slam. I think this may allow a pro-active approach to defence and would force the attacking team deal with them to score

  34. Ian says:

    One more thought, then i will stop thinking! What about freeing up the jacks movement restriction of one hex prior to slamming/stealing? Only allow normal movement, so no dash etc. get those jacks performing!

  35. Murrell says:

    This would all make more sense if there was an ability that let some Strikers Slam/Slamback. Quite frankly, as people have stated, some species aren’t gonna go for not cracking people who come at them.

    FF strikers being able to slam would be both flavorful and showcase how some CAN defend themselves better then others.

    They could have a skill that works similar to Lucky and Really Lucky. First step is for a Slamback, second step unlocks offensive slamming.

  36. Ian says:

    Yeah, i like the idea of utilising jacks in place to block guards etc so strikers can run around. It would force tactics involving other team members if guards have the option of a short move and slam within the opponents turn, but every turn rather than the once per game running interference. Provided the two hexes/slam is the ONLY action the guard does followed by the slamback/dodge of their opponent, the game wont lose pace…… Does this make any sense?

  37. Ian says:

    Why? Rather than me think about it, please elucidate. I am not experienced in this game.

    • Torkel says:

      Running Interference is powerful, and balanced by two major factors.

      Firstly, it is really scarce. A jack is difficult to level up. And when he does, you might not succeed at the the 2/3 or 1/2 chance of getting RI. You also sacrifice a stat upgrade to get it. Alternatively, you need to sacrifice an action in a match for a relatively slim chance to get an RI card.
      Secondly, RI is limited to Jacks. Jacks are weaker than guards at slamming and can only move 1 hex before slamming (which is actually quite a good threat range for RI). I also think that Jacks are more difficult to keep in the right place during the game because it costs more actions to get stuff done with them.

      Your suggestion does not at all match the balance of power of actions in this game.

      Also, like sideofiron politely pointed out, having a large portion of the opposing team RI every turn of the game is a big blow to the flow, if you will.

  38. Ian says:

    I think an active defence may be something that may add extra depth. Perhaps as a defensive strategy only the action can take place only in your own half, otherwise its a foul?

  39. sideofiron says:

    I think Torkels point is that the beautiful thing about DB is the simplicity of the mechanic. The game flows so quickly and Running Interference already jeopardizes that flow to some degree.

    Further ccomplication by giving guards an interrupting mechanic risks eliminating the offensive focus that currently is makes this game feel so different to BB.

  40. Ian says:

    Thats a fair point. Was contemplating the idea whereby you would require the use of jacks /guards etc to counter that defensive play. Just thinking….. Cheers for the reply

  41. The Enforcer says:

    Hi Jake! Sorry for bothering you, but I would like you to take a minute and read this idea that I had. I think it’s simple, clear, usefull and has sense: a new action for Strikers to, instead of Evade a Slam, endure it.
    Some Strikers aren’t good at Evade, but they have a high puntuation in Strenght, so I can see them more like trying to endure the impact than trying to evade it. That way, they aren’t doing a Slam or Slamback, but they have the opportunity to respond with their Strenght instead of their Speed. The effects for the ability it’s up to you to decide 🙂
    Thanks for your time reading this. Best regards.

    • Rolex says:

      This sounds very good and makes a lot of sense. Just trying to “brace for impact” and keep their footing. No chance to hurt opponent or reposition, so that it’s good only for survival.
      I like it.

      • Blax says:

        I have had a similar idea a while ago read here. http://Www.dailypunteronline.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/new-rule-for-forge-fathers-resolute.html

        We did some testing and it made the strikers pretty powerful you can see the modelling later in the blog.

        • The Enforcer says:

          After reading your article, I think the way you did the action is why it does strikers pretty powerful. I’m not the best at making rules and balancing them, but I see that action more like this:
          Fend is available for any Striker player and if the slamming player is in one of their 3 threat hexes.
          Fend: a 3 dice Strenght test (X)
          * -1 per opposing player threatening the hex you are in (ignoring the slamming player, maximum of -2).
          Fend wins: the defending player stays as it is. The slamming player turns to face directly at the defending player.
          Fend doubles: the defending player may turn to face any direction. The slamming player turns to face directly at the defending player.

          As you can see, this action is not pretty powerful, but it’s a better alternative to those Strikers with a bad Speed and a good Strenght. Anyways, like I said, I’m not the best at making and balancing rules =)

        • Blax says:

          Sorry James.

          @Enforcer Sorry if I am missing something but your version is more powerfull than mine??

          I went with the same 3 dice strength(X) test with the standard -1 for threat hexs. Same so far.
          I went with Brace/Fend Draws or Wins turn to face. Thats all. A draw would be the exact same result as if the striker had dodged a draw then is turn and face. Also I made it so you had to be slammed inthe front to be able to dodge.

          Your version would allow high strength low speed strikers no weakness at all.

          You can see the mathematical modelling results here


          This was all done with FF in mind not trying to fix strikers not being able to slam (which I think makes perfect sense)

        • Blax says:

          @Enforcer sorry I didnt see that you had also included a clause to say it only counts for slams from the front. They are very much the exact copies of each other. You just havent included what happens in a draw. The effect is the same 0 Damage turn and face.

          The only difference is you have given the strikers the chance to turn away from their opponent like a dodge where as I went with the idea that they are locking horns and grappling so cant turn away. If you see what I mean. You feels more like push and run.

        • The Enforcer says:

          @Blax In a draw, both players face each other, just like a draw between slam and dodge.
          I’m not trying to fix strikers not being able to slam too 🙂 With the condition that they have to see the opponent, it makes the action more balanced than your version (just my opinion) and don’t need to change the dodge action. You can quit the “fend doubles” effect if it feels powerful.
          P.D: Sorry for my incoherence in words, english is not my native language, I’m trying my best 🙂

        • Blax says:

          “With the condition that they have to see the opponent, it makes the action more balanced than your version (just my opinion) and don’t need to change the dodge action”

          Thats what I was trying to say both our versions have this just worded differently.
          Mine (I Havent done anything to dodge?)

          Resolute – Any Player
          This player may not be the fastest out there but they are a rock and if they put their mind to it can become an immovable object. As well as the normal options available to this player they may instead choose to “Brace” when slammed by a player in their own threat hexes.
          Brace: a 3 dice Strength test (X)
          *-1 per opposing player threatening the hex you are in (ignoring the slamming player, maximum -2).
          Draw or Brace Wins: the players both turn to face directly at each other.

          Where you use “see the opponent”

          They are both the same idea just you have a doubling effect of being able to turn away that what I believe makes yours more powerful.

        • The Enforcer says:

          Sorry, didn’t see the “when slammed by a player in their own threat hexes.”. That was my fault xD Anyways, if you say it’s powerful, that’s all, as I said I’m not good at balancing rules, I was just sharing that idea (I didn’t know it had been discussed, sorry for all) 🙂

        • Blax says:

          No problem buddy actually quite glad to see others had the same idea. If you or anyone else is interested i have some more ideas on how to get Keepers to be more well Keepers on the Punter. Check it out.

  42. Mystic says:

    I think the answer here is pretty straightforward. Can it a fix or a compromise. I understand the argument for strikers being strikers and in the idealised form of the game them not slamming. Also I feel the general vibe here is that people want at least some strikers to be able to slam. I’m not totally up on the rules so please be forgiving.

    Would it not make sense to have a skill that mirrors ‘Keeper’ that Guards can learn?

    I understand that as designed in it’s purest form perhaps neither of these positions would exist. However, we are also representing the idea of a team of living (mostly) evolving players, at least when playing in a league, mechanically speaking. In a one off game neither Keeper or the proposed new position would be involved allowing play of the game in it’s most balanced form. However, those that wish to add more variables to the game via leveling teams in a league can potentially have players that step outside of the normal bounds of their position.

    I believe this way everyone wins. Am I missing something?

    • Blax says:

      Problem I see is that Keepers don’t actuallly mirror the strikers ball skills all the time. Only when you look at picking up the ball they do in a similar way to how people have suggested strikers should slam at a negative modifier. Once a Keeper has the ball he cant pass or score he just lobs the ball away and so loses his rush. Now stikers slamming even at a negative modifier could still theorically do the same damage as a guard and this is then unbalanced.

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