12 Questions to ... Changl09.
After the strange feeling of facing a volunteer, I return to my usual techniques of cornering and coaxing. While every interview offers its share of insights into the community, I always take a personal pleasure when the first reply is "yeah why not ... but I don't have much to talk about" and the discussion ends with "that was fun".
For you today, one o those "ok why not coaches. A coach I met last season when I joined the Big O. When I met him he used to play Undead and had a terrifying zombie in his line-up. Originally from China, he lived in the USA, Taiwan and now Japan. A true citizen of the world, he now plays in a local table top league in his area. Online, my interlocutor takes part in the Big O, leading the "Fate: Grand Order" Bretonnian outfit, and in the Speed O as we will see later.
Today you are blessed by the presence of Changl09, Grand Inquisitor of the Order of the Hobnailed Boot, for the Big O.
I remember my games last season against Changl09. For my first appearance in a competitive league, I was warned he was out for blood. If the first game was more of a surprise, the second one, late in the season, meant a few cold sweats when playing AV 7. I can now try to understand the roots of his peculiar play style.
Q: How did you get to Blood Bowl ? And how long have you been playing ?
A: I first started playing Blood Bowl back in 2009 or 10? When Space Hulk came out, our local store's manager (Games Workshop Greenwich Village) allowed us to play specialist games in the shop and pretty soon after someone brought out Blood Bowl and we ran a league that lasted for six months.
Q: So how did you get into ReBBL, and how long have you been playing here ?
A: Tommo had been advertising ReBBL in a gaming group on Facebook. I was too late to sign up for Season 6 so I joined Season 7 as soon as it became available.
Score another one for ReBBL recruitment.
Q: To talk about your team, can you explain to me the theme of your team, and why Bretonnians ?
A: I'm playing vanilla Humans IRL so I was going to try another Human team. I'm not too impressed with Kislev and Amazons after trying them out against AI. I think Brets offer an interesting mix of good ball carriers, strong defenses and dirt cheap but effective cannon fodders.
As for theme, all the players are named after knightly characters from a Japanese mobile game called Fate Grand Order.
Q: So you play Humans IRL, Undead last season, Brets this season ... Any race in particular that has your preference ?
A: I'm still fairly new to BB so I'm sticking with bashy teams for now. Maybe bashy with some ball handling ability.
I've tried Orcs in the last One Minute league and they definitely require a lot of progress to be able to handle the ball since there is no dedicated catcher and everyone's agi sucks.
I proffer Dark Elves as a punchy with ball handling capabilities possibility. Changl09 then reminisces about his early days playing them, and doesn't remember much besides stabbing a lot. But it is now time to turn to the question many among us mull over, after seeing him play: his commitment to sticking the boot in.
Q: I have a question regarding your play style (raised by many people including me and my previous interviewee), so we have to talk about your love for fouls.
A: As you may know I started Rebbl with Goblins, and fouling was pretty much the only thing gobbos can do reliably. Once I fouled my opponents' important pieces off the pitch I can at least try to pick up the ball with the cannon fodders; and I guess that just became a habit.
I kinda follow Bob's suggestion that your opponent can't stop you if they are not on the pitch. [Smiley Face]
Q: So, fouls aside, what part of the game do you think you need to focus more on, in order to progress ? And is there any coach you'd like to emulate some habits from ?
A: I have problems with seeing the big picture and sometimes might get distracted by some tactical developments. Oftentimes I might leave my ball carrier out in the open while doing blocks on the other side when I could have shielded the ball first. Also I have a nasty habit of trying to rely on luck which is never good in this game.
My goal is to make Krusader say "I feel really tilted by that move" less in the future, when he is casting my games.
Q: It's time for the Speed O (One Minute Showtime) part of the interview. It's your second time taking part in it, right ? And what made you decide to join the league ?
A: Despite not doing too well last season I liked the speedy format. Keeps people on the edge. Also I can do one game in an hour.
His team "Average Height is a Chaos Dwarf team without dwarf blockers. Surprisingly less fouly than his Big O outfit... for now ...
Q: So what do you have in mind with your Chorf team this season ?
A: Well since I have to rely on worse linos to do the job I might actually need Block before DP and this team might be surprisingly clean given that I'll have less chance to knock people down.
Q: So what kind of dice check/result would you use to symbolize your team in the Speed O this season ? (4+, double push, snake eyes, etc.)
A: 4+. I haven't rolled too badly yet but then again I did get quite a few double skulls already.
[After me asking more details about why 4 +] 4+ is like 50% of the odds right? I hope that I will do average. Always at the bottom of the division is no fun lol.
Q: What kind of games do you prefer : the classic 2-1 grind with a good number of CAS, a 5-4 shoot out with fancy runs and passes or the thightly locked game won on a BS play at turn 16 ?
A: The thightly locked game won on a BS play at turn 16. Nuffle alone can decide whom will win.
A show of true faith. Nuffle is probably pleased, but who knows, for His Rolls are unfathomable.
Q: Do you have any player skill you really like ? And one you really don't care about ?
A: Piling On is my favorite: I made someone rage pretty badly once by POing 3 injuries in a row. Also Block. I made Krusader puzzle for minutes yesterday for putting Block on a [Bretonnian] Blocker.
As for skills I don't care, Hail Mary? Never seen anyone taking it.
Making Krusader puzzled seems to be a perk of being a Bretonnian coach.
Q: Any kick-off event you like ? And one that you really don't like to see popping up ?
A: My worst day was getting two blitzes one after another so that's definitely my least favorite. I prefer more normal kick off events like high kick, it doesn't completely screw with you or your opponents' plan.
Q: What snack and beverage do you recommend for a game of Blood Bowl ?
A: Jalapeno-flavored Snyder's cracked pretzels, or indeed any flavor cuz they are just awesome.
As for drinks Chūhai, any flavor will do, a tall can is a pretty refreshing experience, under 3 dollars.
Chūhai is basically Japanese highball : shōchū and some soda.You can buy some in cans in convenience stores, or mix them yourself. Trying it is loving it.
Q: So, last question for you. My next victim is Deez, do you have any question for him ? Or any question you think I should ask in general ?
A: Why is Piling On the best skill in the game ? [SmileyFace]
As always I want to thanks Changl09 for taking the time to reply to my questions, especially just after our Speed O game for week 1.
While he mentionned sometimes having trouble keeping the big picture in mind during games; I was surprised by some of his answers where he answered with a wider peerspective than I originally had while preparing the questions.
Next episode on Monday: a chat with Deez.