So, you've decided to join the largest (and best) private Blood Bowl 2 league on PC, but no idea where to start? This handy guide is here to help you out!
First of all pick the following that most applies to you:
A) I'm new to Blood Bowl in general and/or I'd like some coaching on my Blood Bowl ability before I jump into "the big leagues".
B) I'm comfortable with playing Blood Bowl and I want to play in a fun, scheduled league to meet and play with great people.
A - Looking for some coaching first?
Then we have you covered with the REBBL Rookie League (the ReBBRL) over at https://www.reddit.com/r/ReBBRL/, our sister league which is focused on helping new coaches get into the game. There's full info on joining the rookie league over at https://www.reddit.com/r/ReBBRL/wiki/gettingstarted
B - Ready to join REBBL proper?
The REBBL plays out over 13-week-long seasons made up of divisions with 14 coaches in each. Once a season has finished, the top teams from every division face-off in a knockout competition (the playoffs) for the fame and glory of being crowned REBBL champion (aka winning the Superbowl)! While the playoffs are running (the off-season) teams that are returning can choose to take part in a swiss-style tournament (the Open Invitational) and new (fresh) teams get to play in their own swiss-style tournament (the Greenhorn). Once that's all done with, we start a new season and do it all again!
The REBBL divisions are split across 3 regions (or "conferences") to cover different timezones. You'll have to decide which of these you want to join for scheduling matches:
REL - the Americas region (North America & South America)
GMAN - the European region
Big O - the Oceanic region
Generally, coaches in each of the regions will be based in either the Americas (REL), Europe (GMAN) or Oceania (Big O) timezones and will want to schedule matches for mid-week evenings or weekends. That doesn't have to be the case if you want to schedule at different times. For example if you're in Europe but prefer to schedule matches around mid-day during the week, you may be better off joining the Big O to better schedule against coaches for their evening time, or similarly if you're in an Americas timezone and want to play mid-day to afternoon, you'd be better off joining the European region to match against coaches in their evening window.
Most importantly, don't forget to read the rules!
Once you've figured that out, what's next? Signing up to REBBL is going to depend on if a season is currently running (mid-season) or if we're currently in the off-season and taking signups for the new, upcoming season. This might be clear from the current posts in the subreddit - either there'll be a "REL/GMAN/Big O Season X Week X Scheduling" set of posts near the top of the page or a lot of nonsense about playoffs. Either way, feel free to hop into the discord server at https://discord.gg/wk6JCNp and say hello, ask about where we're up to and what the hell is going on.
Playoffs are happening! It's the offseason!
It's a perfect time to sign up and get ready for the next season! New teams to REBBL must be a 1000TV (or less) "fresh" team with no matches played. There's no league rules around player or skill limits or anything like that, though we do have a cap on the number of teams from a single race in case one of the races is a bit over-subscribed. Based on past seasons, this is very unlikely to apply unless you're playing a Necromantic or Chaos Dwarf team (we would love to see more agility teams!) and even then, with the number of coaches in REBBL today the race limits are rarely reached.
Also, you'll be eligible to play in the Greenhorn, a swiss tournament of up to 4 matches for some pre-season development for your team. Note that this is a cross-region tournament so you may be matched with coaches from wildly different timezones to your own, though this won't be the case in the season proper. Also if the season is just about to start, it might be too late to join the Greenhorn, but don't worry as you should be placed into a division with other completely new teams that haven't had chance to play any matches yet. Check the subreddit for information or just ask in discord for how to sign up to this tournament.
It's the middle of the season! I don't want to wait for months until the next one!
We have a system called RAMPUP to bring new teams into REBBL during the mid-season, which works as both a waiting room to join any vacancies that open up in a division during the season and to allow teams to play matches and develop ready for next season and even potentially qualify for the playoffs of the current season. Teams in RAMPUP play each other in another swiss-style tournament (ideally grouped into the Big O, REL and GMAN regions) and will be asked to move into one of the current season's fresh-team divisions if a coach leaves for some reason.
So all you need to do is create your fresh team, read the rules, then drop into the discord server (https://discord.gg/wk6JCNp) and ping "@Blood Bowl Admins" ideally in the channel for your chosen region (i.e. #bigo-discussion #gman-discussion or #rel-discussion) stating that you're new and would like to join RAMPUP - or alternatively make a reddit post in r/rebbl - and one of our lovely admins will take care of you.
That's a lot of information!
And that's not all! We have fun one-day tournaments with wacky rulesets, a team-based clan league where clans of 5 coaches face off against each other and other leagues such as the Lineman League and Excessively Elfy League which are exactly what you might expect. Best of all, there's a huge amount of content created as part of REBBL - high quality commentary of matches, the REBBL news site, an awesome webapp (https://rebbl.net/) and more! Hopefully this guide is enough to get you inducted to the REBBL family and we'll see you on the pitch!