It's no word of a lie when I say we've been debating the future of the Market, Open Invitational, Greenhorn etc for over 4 months and I've read easily 20,000 lines of text to get to this point. I'm not going to spend much more time with the intro other than to say the following is presented in an effort to both explain the changes and improve transparency behind decisions made regarding the league. If you have any questions, you can drop them in the Reddit thread, or hit me up in Discord. Without further ado, here we go:
The concept of “fun” has no place in these discussions. To argue for any change with “fun” as your argument first means we need to define fun and it's (a) utterly nebulous and (b) absolutely personal to you. No one else can tell you what you find fun, in the same way that you can’t tell me what I find fun. It’s a fools errand attempting to do that and it muddies the waters beyond any recovery. Naturally I want to believe every coach can have fun in our league, but I can’t tell them how to have fun, or that their concept of fun is correct/incorrect and nor should I. I’m sadly, painfully, aware that we can’t please everyone, so I have to attempt to resolve the issues we currently face agnostic of that fact, for the hopeful betterment of the league.
For the forthcoming off-season there will be NO market in any form, including coach-to-coach trading. This has been suspended so we can fairly affect its impact upon the league. It's been no secret that the market has been heavily heavily abused in its current form, but it has also been felt to add value to the league for many coaches. The problem we currently have is that we cannot assess the value it adds to the league until we see how the league operates without it. Will there be a higher than average amount of rerolls? Would those rerolls have been prevented if there was a market in place to shore up losses? There are many issues associated with the current iteration of the market and the best way to fix it is to burn it to the ground and look at how the league survives that. If it’s needed, building a brand new market system from the ground up will then be our next goal. My current IDEA (i.e. this is in no way final) for the future of the market is limiting all players to a maximum of 2 normals, or 1 double/stat and having the waiver claims to be assigned to coaches who have suffered the most positional deaths/impactful perms in the previous season to try and provide a recovery plan for those teams and promote their continued existence. During this season and the next we will continue to purchase players from retired teams to build up the market stock in case it is deemed necessary to rebuild the market.
OI is dead. Every attempt to make this work in a way that promoted coaches to join and experience it added extra abuses and silliness that took it away from the Blood Bowl we are here to play. We will continue to work towards fun ways to spend your downtime in the off season to keep you busy and invested in REBBL, Summer Camp WILL return!
Wait, what? The Off-season International is our new and improved off-season competition to allow you to play and develop your REBBL team during the 6 weeks between seasons. It will be a very different beast than the old OI and the PROVISIONAL rules are as follows:
There will be three games played over 5 weeks. Signups will open during the final week of the season and the first round matchups will be published on the first Monday of the off-season. Yes this means the final round will only last for one week - more on this later. Matches will be cross-regional so you must be able to play at flexible times.
You are NOT eligible for this competition if you qualified for Playoffs or Challengers cup.
Matches will be played to 16 turns, if you lose you do not continue in the OI, you are done. If you draw, you will be permitted to play in the next round, but if you draw in both the first two rounds you will be knocked out of the final round of play.
The ONLY provision we will make to “protect” your teams is that we will ensure that first season teams will be matched against first season teams in the first round ONLY. Once you get to the second round you are swimming with the sharks.
The same standards of play expected during the REBBL main season will be expected here too, failure to schedule/play games, egregious soft conceding, DBAD violations, etc, will be punished as harshly as they are in REBBL main.
If you qualify for the final week you WILL be able to refuse your ticket for that round, but only if this is done before the matchups are generated. If you accept your ticket and have your matchup generated you MUST keep your team for the forthcoming REBBL season. If you were eligible to play in the final week but want to remain eligible to reroll in the season after, you must refuse the final round of OI. It is to allow the option to refuse the final week’s ticket that the third round is one week only.
The above format is designed to give coaches up to three potential matches of off-season development in a competitive environment whilst looking to close as many windows of potential abuse as possible. If you feel this is too brutal, it’s Blood Bowl, you want development? Fight for it. It is ENTIRELY OPTIONAL, but you will only have one chance to sign up, at the very beginning, no fence sitting allowed.
In my very best Ralph Wiggum voice: “I’m in danger”. That's my take on the GH right now. It’s head is on the chopping block, because we are equally concerned about the potential abuse cases here as we were in the old OI. However at this time we will continue to run the GH as we did this current season. This is entirely because we are making radical changes to the off-season situation for returning teams and I want to have a familiar place to land into if coaches decide they are unhappy with the returning team options. There’s a VERY real chance this will be the final running of the GH as we know it and next time around it might not exist at all, or it might return in a very different format.
This is all already set for the upcoming off season, we will return to this topic in the late weeks of the main season, to discuss plans for the following season. There's already a lot to discuss and unpack and this will be an unnecessary distraction.
Finally here's the Video Highlight from the Twitch stream where we presented these changes and held a question and answer session.
Stay classy folks!