The Chosen of Chaos

Chaos is a team with 3 distinct identities, which we'll cover one at a time.

First is the Blood Bowl identity. It is traditionally a team with a whole lot of strength and mutations and not that much of anything else. It is the quintessential kill team! But not really that much else. We want to keep this identity in mind because we want to enable it. It is part of the team's legacy after all. But we want to do so without it being at the expense of other considerations.

The second identity is the one Chaos inherited from Warhammer. It's a faction of corruptors, conquerors and assimilators. Sort of like the Fantasy equivalent to the Borg. Chaos Cannot be stopped. Chaos cannot reasoned with. It can be resisted for a time, but it will ultimately proof futile because eventually you will be brought into its folds.

This identity of Chaos wants to be familiar to other teams, most notably humans, while maintaining a distinct alien otherness that emphasizes how it turns the familiar, unfamiliar.

The third identity is randomness and wackiness and just seeing a whole lot of things that are different. This identity is my favourite, but it clashes with the first 2 and it's not really great from a template team, so we're probably going to save it's expression for places outside of this roster.

Otherwise, you'd better believe I would fill every player on this team with a diverse variety of rookie mutations and extra-ordinary skills.


The Roster

No.  Name MV ST AG AV Skills N(D) Cost
0-16 Chaos Chosen 6 3 3 8   GM(APS) 50K
0-4 Beastman 6 3 3 8 Thick Skull, Horns GSM(AP) 70K
0-4 Chaos Warrior 5 4 3 9   GSM(AP) 100K
0-1 Minotaur 5 5 3 8 Loner, Thick Skull, Wild Animal, Frenzy, Horns, Mighty Blow SM(GAP) 150K

There are some differences here from CRP6. This Chaos team is a little bit more like Nurgle, with the Beastmen serving the role of blitzer on the team. The part of me that likes silly rookie skills is tempted to bump the price up to 80 and add Juggernaut, but this version of the player is probably more healthy for the game. As is, we've increased the cost by 10K and added thick skull. This is mostly because I think that horns combined with this skill access is worth 20K. But I didn't want to unilaterally raise the price and thick skull is decent compensation for the reduced Beastman count. Besides; a 12 player roster is cost-neutral compared to CRP6. The increase isn't big a deal.

Something else to note is that this roster was very nearly 0-6 beastmen and 0-2 Chaos Warriors. This would have better differentiated the team from Nurgle, put more emphasis on the beastmen, and opened some space for potential throwers, but it would also have probably changed the team's identity too much in one go to really get away with in a legacy template team. The part of me that is in love with identity 3 wanted me to go this way, but the part of me that wants a recognizable continuation to the game said that this was the better call.


The Claw Problem

So. Claw. This skill is a whole thing that defines teams based on whether they have access to it. Frankly, it's a bit of a mess. It can potentially invalidate whole teams, makes +AV a trap stat up and just doesn't look very interesting. It is also a necessary skill. Claw opens up the bash design space in a big way and creates a self-check to make sure that murder/control teams never hold too much power in a league.

Still, Claw is dangerous and as a designer it needs to be used carefully. Especially when combined with strength access.

So what can be done? Well, a few things.

The most obvious plan of action is to disassemble claw synergies. the change I made to the Claw Pile On interaction was this, where we simply denied the problematic synergy without dulling the claws themselves. We could also nerf claw. Doing so would make it safer to use and include on teams, but it would also hurt the unique feeling that its inclusion provides and limit its effectiveness as a self-check. More realistically, if we wanted to nerf claw, we would probably make it Extraordinary and then replace it with a new mutation that's not quite as domineering.

I don't think that's necessary right now, but it's good to have a plan in case circumstances change.

Yet another option is to cut back on the number of players with normal access to both mutations and strength, and to make sure that those that do are pricey, fragile or otherwise require care in use. This is a strategy that we'll definitely want to pursue and by small degrees have done so for this roster. I may not like Werewolves, but I would hardly call them unhealthy for the game. If anything I think they are the ideal use case for this skill.

Last of all, tangential to the problem rather than within it, is play feel. Because claw doesn't just give murder teams an advantage against other bash teams. It makes the team that has it feel different for its inclusion. Whether or not a game plays it out in reality, a team with claw feels like it's better at injuring players. Playing against it feels that much more stressful and exciting; and beating it that much more of an achievement.

There's a lot here to think about here so I'll leave it to boil for now. Claw is complicated!


What's Next?

Now that we've gone over the benefits and downsides of the dreaded claw, we can take a look at some fun extraordinary skills!

And by fun I mean play-feel define. Just so we're clear, here.


- Kaosubaloo

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