Wednesday, 13 March 2013

WoffBoot VII approaches...

Only 44 days until WoffBoot VII. The air is alive with the swish-swish of drybrushes and the halls are decked with discarded pieces of sprue.

I thought a little preamble would be useful to iron out the details. It's all up for discussion, so jump in with comments, and I'll update the post as required.


26th-28th April
  • Friday - starts at noon (for those who can) 0-2 battles each?
  • Saturday - full day 2-4 battles each?
  • Sunday - concludes at noon 1 battle each?


1. Round Robin tournament, with players being matched according to availability.

2. Armies will be 1,000 points maximum.
  • Lords/Heroes <= 50% (of which Lords <=25%)
  • Other percentages as rulebook.

3. Each game will be a Pitched Battle, with VPs awarded as per the rulebook, with the addition of the 'Fleeing Units' house rule:

  • Active and >=50%: 0%
  • Fleeing and >=50%: 25%
  • Active and <50%: 50%
  • Fleeing and <50%: 75%
  • Destroyed/Fled off the table: 100%

4. Points for the overall league table as follows:

  • Crushing Victory: 3
  • Victory: 2
  • Draw: 1
  • Loss: 0


5. League points are awarded on the VP100 system (i.e. divide the game scores by 100 and use that number).

Sample tables removed as redundant

6. Anyone interested in introducing scenarios as well as pitched battles?

6. Scenarios by mutual consent.

7. 2D6 power dice for the magic phase, re-rolling 5s and 6s (Leofa, I think you were the only one against this - any concession?)

7. 2D5 power dice for magic phase

2D4 or 2D6 as an option by mutual agreement.

8. Before the start of the first game, the armies are presented to the assembled players, in an 'opening ceremony'. Units are identified, questions answered and special rules explained (does this extend to identifying magic items? Or is it still gamesmanship to keep them hidden?).

8. Opening ceremony staggered (as players arrive), with full disclosure of army lists.

9. Secret ballot, submitted as soon as players arrive and revealed at the close, whereby they guess the final positions of the league table.

Players & armies

(shout out your own)

  • Kasfunatu - Daemons
  • Leofa - Warriors of Chaos
  • Stylus - Savage Orcs
  • East - Wood Elves
  • Yalfrezi & Son - Dwarves
  • Reinbowarrior - Skaven


  1. As Sir Not Appearing-In-This-Tournament, I'm sadly aware that the only thing I have to offer is fluff.
    Permission to act as official tourney fluffer, sir?

    1. I hope you are noting down all the armies as they're added, for the introductory fluff.

      So far, we need a MacGuffin that would appeal to Skaven, Dwarves, Savage Orcs and Daemons (a cheese-and-ale fondue, simmering in a skull cauldron over a warpstone brazier?)

    2. It shall be as you command, my masters.

  2. Dates: I'm pretty sure Yalfrezi will be a noon til noon player therefore everyone will prob play one game on the Sunday.

    Format: Delete bullets 2 and 3; the only change to the published selection criteria is your first bullet.


    The VP100 serves only to widen the gulf between 1st and last and also favours games with a high kill-count regardless of how close it was. I accept we should do all we can to encourage fair play and sportsmanship, but this is not the way.

    Scenarios would be great for a MuffBoot Campaign Weekend but not the annual WoffBoot. That said, for any individual battle, and with the consent of both generals, I see no reason why scenario use should be proscribed.

    If power dice at d4 (or d6, rerolling 5s & 6s) is what you're suggesting, I'm for it.

    Opening Ceremony. Aye. Though it may be a rolling start, depending on arrivals, this is a sound principle.

  3. Leofa, I think I agree with you about the VP100 system - the only way it would make sense would be if we were playing scenarios (where VPs are awarded for things other than destroying the enemy). Aside from the gulf between first and last, it doesn't have that at-a-glance clarity where you can see who won/lost/drew.

    Not sure what you mean by deleting bullets 2 (army composition) and 3 (VP points) - both are house rules, and not the same as the published rulebook.

    Had another thought for the Opening Ceremony: after all the armies are presented, we could hold a secret ballot for which army we think will win, to be opened at the Closing Ceremony. Might be a nice exercise in perception vs reality.

    1. Bullets two and three of bullet two! Durr. ;-)
      "Core >= 25%"
      "Special/Rare <= 25% (of which Rare <=25%)"
      One of these is already in the rulebook and the other is wrong.

    2. Also, agreed re VP100 and campaigns with scenarios / objectives, etc.

      And I like the secret ballot. Further, each general should place *all* armies in the order they predict they'll finish; the closest general getting the "clairvoyance" or "prophetic" prize at the closing ceremony!

    3. Erroneous bullets removed, with an additional bullet saved for my shameful head.

      So this is the kind of 'secret ballot' where we sign our names? ;-) I'm up for that - what's the clairvoyance prize: a blank lottery ticket?

  4. I like the secret ballot.

    I would be in favour of leaving points simple (and just use the vp100 for deciders)

    Leofa has a point re opening ceremony - but I think that's fine.

    The opening ceremony should include army composition, troops, characters and spell lists... I am open to items but personally: I think we should keep hidden. I would similarly not suggest you had to reveal magic level (although it makes no difference to me, every can assume I will have upgraded :)) or other such inert upgrades.

    I will be taking Daemons.

    If we go with 2d4 power dice, then I will need a hand and house rule to adapt a random magic table that is in daemons book as that is based on the roll being made on 2d6. As an aside: I have to say I have played a few 1000 games since the last woofboot with 2d6 and it hasn't been the miscast or bust that we felt last time - just throwing out there to see if others would opt for 2d6?

    I agree with Leofa that the scenarios work for a campaign muff - but a battle woff.

    1. Is it not a more even playing field if army lists are totally open before an army's first battle? Less realistic, I grant you. And it's how GW tournies go. It also means there is no (dis)advantage arising from when you play someone in the schedule or when you are able to arrive. My twopenneth-worth.

    2. That was along the same lines as my thoughts. For example, if an Orge player is fielding a Hellheart, it's likely to come up in post-battle chats ("I was doing great until my wizard blew up from that sodding Hellheart!" etc.) If we're keeping things semi-hidden, it suggests an element of self-censorship ("I was doing great until... something I can't talk about happened!"), which isn't great.

      So basically, I saying I can't keep my gob shut. :-)

    3. Good point.

      Although does favour the spells which target a unit and destroy an item in it if you already know an item is in it.

      But I take your point and happy to confirm them.

      Perhaps confirm the items and answer questions on what they do - but not where they are?

    4. I agree that for one-off games, surprises might be nice. But in the interests of not (dis)advantaging anyone on the basis of when they meet a certain opponent, I'd say just completely open roster sheets.

    5. My vote is for totally open rosters. I don't mind the 'concealed item' option, but with limited characters and the restrictions on who can carry what (arcane for spellcasters, standards for banner bearers), it's not going to be too hard to guess anyway...

  5. Oh and WoffGuest's name is Ralph and is planning on taking Skaven

  6. I'm open to the idea of 2D6 power dice - I think the first 8th ed WoffBoot (which was WoffBoot V?) was something of a Miscast Learning Curve and we seem to be a bit more sensible about committing dice.

    The fact that each player will have (at a guess) access to 2-4 spells will be a limiting factor anyway - and if someone wants to chuck a load of dice at a spell ... well, they now know the risks.

    I thought the Opening Ceremony would be staggered, but I'm sure we can work around that. I'm happy to redact the magic items etc. on the list, as long as we aren't obliged to keep them a secret when discussing/reporting the battle afterwards.

    I've marked down Ralph's Skaven (do we need to assign a non-human name, like the rest of us? How about Rattigan?) and your Daemons. I notice that Leofa is still keeping his army a secret - I'm expecting a surprise appearance from the Chaos Dwarves.

    1. Aaaah, Chaos Dwarves. I wish! They're in an even worse state of painting progression than the 2 armies I'm currently deciding between! You have been warned. (Promise I'll get better after the MA is done...)

  7. I would suggest Reinbowarrior as a name; he goes by that on another gaming blog

    I have no idea on Leofa - he has mentioned a couple of options, but we all know he has several he could choose from!

    Cool on magic; any opinions from others about sticking with 2d6?

    1. I suggested that Leofa might like to go for the hat-trick, and play Ogre Kingdoms (clearly the Team Ferrari of the WoffBoot)

      But I think that was outweighed by the risk of not winning, and being branded General Couldn't-Win-With-Ogres. :-)

    2. Haha - nice gauntlet thrown down there!

      (but after recent years, it should probably be Team Red Bull not Team Ferrari)

    3. Nobody would consider the oft-neglected d8 as a magic pool dice? Reroll 1s, option for some kind of 'if it's a one, then reroll and if that's an 8 then the demon special rule works', fewer overall rerolls than having to redo 2d6 every time a five or six appear (which is like, 2 in 3? if my rusty statistics serve). Plus the sad old d8 might have a purpose in its wretched life again. You could even paint a special one for the day.

      I know it skews the average results, making things a little more unpredictable, it's just an outside suggestion.

    4. Not really on the d8

      The daemon table is when you roll the 2d6 for magic, then take the total and read result from so no rerolls required.

      If we opt for 2d4 the table needs adjusting.

      We can't go for single d8 as you only have one dice so the dispelling player getting max and then powering player getting sum sould not work.

      I am happy to work with others to rewrite table if need be to 2d4 - just was trying to save some hassle if we were content with 2d6 for magic.

    5. Agreed; d8 is the wrong curve and doesn't make dispel dice easy.

      I am also prepared to concede that perhaps we were all too trigger-happy at WoffBoot V with magic dice.

      Therefore, given everyone (apart from me!) prefers to roll d6s over d4s (even if they have to reroll the 5s and 6s), let's compromise with 2d5? Daemons take the natural result for their horrific special rules and then reroll the 6s to establish the actual strength of the WoM. Still feel strongly that 2d6 is a better fit with 2k games.

    6. I agree that D4 feel like a bit of a damp squib when they just plunk down, rather than roll (although don't let's get started on the lab research that says GW dice are incorrectly calibrated to roll more 1s...

      But having played a couple of 1,000pt games with 2D6 dice for WoM, I haven't felt it unduly affected the game.

      So happy to do 2D5 as a compromise, happy to do 2D6 proper.

    7. So roll 2d6
      Take sum as result for Daemon magic consequence (there are more bad for chaos than good - apparently the gods are fickle)

      Then reroll the 6s

      To cut the rerolls, if the reroll comes up a 6, then it was meant to be high... so take as a 5?

      It does not change much the average of a d5, the average of above is 3.055 instead of 3

    8. Good plan. I still think it may force a general's hand in selecting the number of wizards/spells, but I'm happy to go along with it.

    9. Argh. Scratch that. I'm getting muddled up with which dice the defender gets for displel dice. Kas (who is this Ben bloke?), yes, the mean is barely changed but the mode is now 5 and it was specifically too many dispel dice that marred magic in WoffBoot V.

      Let's stick with 2d5, re-rolling 6s until you don't get one. Should only take an extra couple of seconds (apart Kas who has trouble not rolling 6s...)

    10. Ok. How about this as then

      Magic is varied.
      Default is 2d5 (obtained by rolling 2d6 and rerolling 6s)

      But if both generals agree then you can still play the standard 2d6 or the originally suggested 2d4 (although this should still be rolled using 2d6, in case playing daemons and/or want them to not be squiblike, but rerolling 5+6)?

    11. And I don't have an alias, as my Google account is also used for work, and I think I might confuse people if I started referring to myself as Kasfunatu amongst the engineering dept!

    12. I think they'd give you the appropriate respeck. Safe.

      Agreed re WoM. Just like scenarios: If both generals fancy one, use a scenario; otherwise default to pitched battle. If both generals agree on a magic-heavy (2d6) or magic-lite (2d4) game, great; otherwise default to 2d5.


    13. Yep, default to 2D5 with 2D4 or 2D6 as an option by mutual agreement sounds good. We might even get some more data about what works best.

    14. I positively insist on my colleagues calling me 'Stylus'. And 'General'.

  8. Ah yes, I forgot needing two values for dispel dice. Dufus.

    1. It's not just the miscast. Stylus you erroneously assume 2-4 magic levels. This becomes a requirement at 2d6 otherwise the number of dice I can sensibly commit to a spell is typically overshadowed by the number of dispel dice you have vs my one spell attempt. I am happy to compromise at 2d5 but I have def not seen the evidence to justify 2d6.

    2. That's a good point - the lone Lv1 spellcaster becomes redundant (unless they're going for Irresistible Force), because their opponent will likely have enough dispel dice to deal with it. So you either go magic-heavy in your army or not at all - not a desirable set-up.

      What about limiting the number of dice per dispel attempt to 6? Doesn't solve every problem, and we could still go with 2D5, but it might help. (trying to think back to WoffBoot V - were there so many Miscasts because they were the only ones getting through?)

    3. Of course, if one were playing Night Goblins, you could just take a whole bunch of dirt cheap Lv1s and 'nuke' one with a Miscast each turn. :-)

      Tactical nous, you can have that one for free...

    4. That's exactly why all the miscasting happened - too many dispel dice compared to number if spells. Yes, we could all take more wizards but then that removes choice and variety. There's no point limiting the number of dice for each dispel as the max would be 5 ignoring channeling.

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. As a note about timings:

    I am not working on the Friday, so it is open house if anyone wants to turn up early.

    I am guessing the most of the woffboot will happen Saturday lunch -> sunday lunch.

    However, I think from previous conversations at least a couple of people are arriving on the Friday night (from about 6:30 onwards).

    1. I *think* (having a look at schedules of play) we'll need as many people as possible to play a game or two Friday night. Shout out if you can make it.

      Count me in!

    2. I'll need to confirm the time off, but I should be good for noon Friday.

      I know scheduling will have to fit with who can do what, but I'd make a plea for spacing them out as much as possible. If memory serves, Kraken had played 3 of 5 games by Friday night, which makes for a quiet EndBoot.

      (not that I'm suggesting that fatigue was the only reason I beat him)

    3. Well, that means that you and I play get ours in Friday afternoon.

      Which is kind of fitting to start woffboot vii, seeing as we were the final singles game of woffboot vi.

    4. Challenge accepted.

      Reminds me of reading about a special 'Book of Grudges' tournament - players get to single out an opponent to play against.

      Could that work for the WoffBoot? You get to pick one of your battles as a 'grudge match' - if you win, lose or draw, points as normal. But if you massacre, points are greater (4 points? 6 points?) and if you get massacred, you actually incur a penalty (-1 points? -3 points?). Might be a nice way of playing a wildcard - at a risk.

      And if the selection was done in secret, and not revealed until the end of the tournament, then we really wouldn't know who had won until the very end of play. It also sets up the interesting situation of two players 'grudging' each other without knowing it.

    5. That might work very well with the fluff I'm brewing. Not that one brews fluff. Gathering? Accumulating?

    6. I think if you are going for the grudge concept then win and lose have points affected too; and I like the risk.

      If you have one wildcard, I am not sure you can have a free choice on your grudge though... otherwise you may be inclined to choose your best chance of winning, rather than the person you really have the grudge against.

      I do like the idea of raising the stakes though.

      Actually, maybe it is a free choice, and like double in backgammon; so you can call in any game. In a raised stakes games, losses are increased by 1 and wins are increased by 1?

      What about
      a general can call a raised stakes games.
      an opposing general does not have to accept.

      If general A issues challenge but B declines
      (high risk game)
      A's potential points are -2,-1,0,2,4
      B's potential points are 0,0,0,1,3

      If general A issues challenge and B accepts
      (grudge game)
      A and B's potential points are -4,-2,0,3,6

      Probably needs some number crunching, as this is just an off the cuff response, but there may be something to it.

    7. Although it is probably needlessly complicated and makes reading the table harder.

    8. But open to the suggestion...

    9. The idea is unformed, but I think there's something there, especially as it favours 'fun/random' play over 'competitive' play.

      How about a similar arrangement to the magic dice - in that we have a default (the normal scoring system), but players can choose to gamble:

      At the start of the tournament, a player can declare if he wants to 'grudge' or not. He then randomly selects a sealed bit of paper with one of the five opponents written on it - but doesn't unseal it until the end of the tournament.

      So no-one is at an advantage (i.e. Gen East can't take advantage of the fact that he always beats me!) and no-one is at a disadvantage (as grudges are unknown, you won't 'try harder' against your allotted grudge). All that will be known at the start is who chose to gamble or not, so we won't know the 'true' final scores until the unsealing.

      Points advantage/demerit to be discussed - and it should definitely be a risk - as for the table, we can just asterisk which matches turned out to be grudges.

    10. @Leofa So I'll put you down as a 'maybe'?


    11. @Stylus: You often get unformed ideas when they are off the cuff. I was not expecting that to be the final one.

      Your point about East was exactly the point about everyone choosing one grudge match for the tourney, and it being free.

      I don't mind the knowing and the trying; and the deficit needs to be there.

      Asterisk on the table works.

      If it was known and a choice on each game, then some further tactics come in for leaderboard shenanigans.

      Also if East does make your game high risk, you don't have to accept and wouldn't that make the win if you got it that much sweeter.

      I don't personally like the random sealed grudge.

      If you want the 'one' fixed risk, I would take the grudge as your biggest defeat from the last woffboot. If this is your first woffboot, then you can choose your most hated?

    12. @stylus you can put me down as a "over my dead cold body". This is a stupid idea given we've already dismissed other plans to widen the gap between first and last and make the contest less close. I'll reply more when a) I'm at my pc

    13. Aaaaarrrggghhh.

      Or b) you've fixed this blog for safari iPhone users.

    14. @Ben Yes, I think if the 'grudging' favours character/fluff over gamesmanship (i.e. you pick the opponent because of a previous heavy defeat, or close contest), it would work better.

      Any abuse of the rule - i.e. everyone grudges Yalfrezi because they think (no offence) that there's some easy points to be had - can be easily spotted and stopped.

      In fact, restricting a grudge to someone who has beaten you at least once before sort-of guarantees that you're not looking for an easy win.

      The core of the idea is, I think, like playing a team captain in Fantasy Football, but with a bit of character and a bit of risk too.

    15. @Leofa I guess that's a non-starter then. But I don't think there's a inherent problem in a rule change that widens the gap between first and last in the table. A narrow gap in the placing seems more problematic, because you're boiling it down to things like points-difference.

    16. RE: Safari problems. Sorry, the current advice it to turn off 'Disconnect' (whatever that may be - some Apple thing?)

    17. Chaps, sorry about my cock-blocking your flirtations with new rules ideas.

      I maintain that rules that widen the gap are not in the spirit of the 'Boot. We all want a good, clean fight and an exciting, close contest that goes to the wire. And it needs to be a contest of generalship in the field. I know Stylus will argue that part of being a good general is knowing how to pick your fights but I don't feel it's appropriate here. And optional higher max points from a game is out of the hands of the generals not in that fight and therefore inconsistent and unfair. It is not the same as altering WoM or scenario as that has no effect on others. Regardless of who wins a grudge match, I am further behind the leader and therefore need to up the stakes on my games. We may as well just increase the points across the board. Besides, I can say from experience that losing out on VPs is far more exciting than losing out by whole points!

      Two concessions I will make:

      Something that adjusts the points after all the fighting is done would be fun as it keeps you guessing who has won. However... again, it's a bit random and might suit a campaign weekend better.

      Secondly, a grudge chooses you not the other way around, so I might be persuadable on the following:

      Any general who you lost your last 'Boot meeting to is a grudge (actual, not invented for fun!) for you.
      A loss or draw in such a game is no further shame. A win however is worth an extra point and the grudge is settled. In this way, the 'Boot is potentially more fun for those prone to losing! But it'll be swings and roundabouts, and if you never lose, well, you've no grudges to settle!

    18. Are you saying that a general who lost three battles last time gets to have three grudges, whereas someone who won/drew all his fights, gets none?

      I could go along with this idea - a bit like tournament seeding or a handicap in golf.
      (is it like either of those things? I don't know squat about sports)

      I don't think it will turn up too much (having quickly looked at the scores for you, me, East and Kas, no grudge would have been settled in WoffBoot VI), but it makes for a nice flavour rule - and potential leveller.

      And really - the fun part of the tournament is surely the battles. How the table ends up is just to add a bit of structure. I don't think I've enjoyed battles more/less because of what it meant for the table score. Enjoyment usually comes on its own merits.

    19. That's exactly what I'm saying. And I echo your other musings here. I hadn't looked at how many times in the past this extra point would have been awarded, but it's nice to know it wouldn't make a massive difference. The important thing is that lots of battles *qualify* as grudge matches - the trick is to try and win one it seems!

  11. Fatigue was the only reason you beat me, happy to confirm that.

    1. Well, I did have a long journey, so I was pretty tired...