Monday, 13 January 2014

WoffBoot VIII announced

Here's to looking ahead to the April and planning the now announced WoffBoot8.

A few changes in form to last year; and as before 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.

25th-27th 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?

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

Armies will be 1,200 points maximum. [Note attempting a slight increase from previous years]
Lords/Heroes <= 50% (of which Lords <=25%)
Other percentages as rulebook.

You may bring multiple lists for one army, and play them based on some logic which must be documented; and not based on your pairing. Example you have 3 lists: A,B,C and 5 games to play
Viable options (without knowing opponents):
you elect to play battles using A,B,C,B,A or A,A,B,B,C etc
you roll a dice on 1/2/3 play A, 4/5 play B 6 play 6
you roll a d5 and select the army at that position from AABBC eg B; then next game roll a d4 an select army at position from AABC etc
The point being to allow randomness and change (a little bit of experimentation) but not to the point where can match up enemies.

Each game will be by default a Pitched Battle (although other scenarios can be played by mutual consent).

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%

Further to discussions led by Leofa, and trialed behind the scenes at the last WoffBoot, it is suggested the following scoring system is used:
Difference in VPs ("VPs you scored" minus "VPs scored by opponent) divided by "VPs scored by the winner": this gives a result for each bout between -1 and +1.
Each general's average is then found (and 1 is added to make them all positive numbers) which can be used to determine a winner.
Also, unlike previous systems, these scores can be compared across 'Boots, past and future, allowing each general to know his "Personal Best" which he can attempt to better as time goes by.

As standard 2D5 power dice for magic phase (although 2D4 or 2D6 as an option by mutual agreement).

Opening ceremony staggered (as players arrive), with full disclosure of army lists. Units are identified, questions answered and special rules explained including magic items.

Whilst played in WoffBoot VII, the grudge point system was not in the original briefing (although heavily debated in the forum pre-games).
As a general you get a potential grudge victory point if you beat the general who, out of the participants in this WoffBoot, gave you the biggest beating the last time you played them in a boot.
For example East's grudge will be against Kasfunatu; wheres Kasfunatu's will be against Kraken (who did not appear in WoffBootvii, but was Kas's largest most recent boot defeat was to him in VI).

Players & armies
Stylus: Savage Orcs
Yalfrezi: Ogre Kingdoms
Kasfunatu: Daemons (probably; slim chance it may be Vampires instead)
East: Dark Elves
Kraken: Warriors of Chaos
Leofa: [Undecided]: Lizardmen, Tomb Kings, Dwarves or HighElves


  1. What? Nobody has beaten Kas since I was there two years ago? And that means I'm his grudge partner? Gods of Chaos, I am so boned.

    1. So Whose Grudge is it Anyway?

      From a quick peek at the last tables, it would go:
      Kasfunatu grudges Kraken (WoffBoot VI, 875:650)
      East grudges Kasfunatu (WoffBoot VII, 767:225)
      Stylus grudges Kasfunatu (WoffBoot VII, 1148:292)
      Leofa grudges East (WoffBoot VII, 476:403)
      Yalfrezi grudges Kasfunatu (WoffBoot VII, 1250:0)
      Kraken grudges Stylus (WoffBoot VI, 1125:100)

      Is that about right?

  2. To confirm: wall and hedges will be played by the official rules this time around - no loss of movement and not dangerous to infantry

    1. They'd still count as a defended obstacle if fighting over one, though, right?

    2. Ah, good. Might eventually stop me attacking people stood behind them, that.

  3. So then: who is playing what army?

    Anyone want to be first to open the kimono?

    1. I'd very much like to take the training wheels off my WoC army, but I'm still subject to confirmation on being there at all! One of my Christmas presents is tickets to a beer and whisky expo back home, and I need to check the dates.

    2. True to my self-imposed limits, I'll be fielding Savage Orcs again (although if I can get my painting mojo back in action, they will be different Savage Orcs from last time).

      Gen Yalfrezi has expressed an interest in Ogre Kingdoms (assuming they are not spoken for).

      Which just leaves the three multi-army generals...

      As a steer, armies that have never yet graced a WoffBoot: Beastmen, Bretonnians, Dark Elves and Tomb Kings.

    3. No temptation from the incoming all-new Dwarves, then?

    4. I considered it, but given my glacial speed of painting I'd never get a new army off the ground in two months (and despite having 3,000pts painted, they all need adjusting)

      (plus, I'm waiting for reports on how these new dwarves play, to ensure they're not as flat as three-week-old Bugman's ale)

    5. So the first of the new Dwarf releases are out.

      Hmm... Call me a Old Grumbler, but I think I have all the old metal dwarves I will ever need.

    6. I like the Hammerers but at £30 for 10 I can't afford a unit. Perhaps a single box to add up-to-date command models to my plastic longbeard and hammerer units converted from BfSP/7thEd dwarves?...

    7. They look nice, and in comparison to the old hammerers they work out cheaper I think :)

    8. I agree the Hammerers/Longbeards are the best plastic dwarves they've released to date (although at £30 for 10, they bloody well ought to be). A bit monopose, maybe, and the paint job hasn't done them justice - but the look just doesn't excite me.

      It's moved too far along towards the Hobbit range of 'small human', rather than the old models who were all heads and beards (and - dare I say - character?).

      Mind you, I'm not complaining - the last thing I need is *more* dwarf minis to paint. I'll be waiting for the new army book with interest.

    9. I like their desperate last ditch attempt to flog off the metal slayers in one of their 'bargain' packs, when the general vibe is that plastic ones are going to be around later this month. Not, mind you, that they'll necessarily be any cheaper.

  4. not confirming just yet! but it looks like it will be Dark Elves for me

  5. Sounds promising, I've never played against Dark Elves before.

    Speaking of the Druchii, has anyone else seen this mother-of-all-battle-reports? (Finuval Plain: 25,000pts a-side!)

    1. I've been reading it. Great stuff, one of the best he's written!

  6. I'm slow and have little maths brain, as is well established. Can I tentatively check I understand the new scoring system properly?

    So supposing I've played a battle and won it (suspending your disbelief here as needed), and scored say 942 against 630 VPs.

    I get ((942-630)/942)+1 points, right? 1.3 points rounded up. And my opponent gets ((630-942)/942)+1 points, for 0.7.

    So there's always two points available and you share them based on how much ass you kicked? It's a sort of percentage system?

    1. I am probably better leaving Leofa to explain his system, but I think you are about right.

      The +1 only happens after the games (not on each one) - although mathematically makes no difference when you do it.

      So after a game, one player will have a score 0->1 and the other -1->0.

      These are then averaged, and 1 added to give an overall tourney score of 0->1.

      Leofa created an excel to deal with as it is definitely not as in-your-head easy as 0 for a loss, 1 for a draw, 2 for a win!

    2. Sounds good - I like the idea of having no clue as to how I'm doing in the tournament until the Delphic Oracle excel sheet tells me.

      Speaking of which, any chance of applying this system to the previous 'Boots? (just for illustration, of course - let the historical record stand)

    3. For the record, if people prefer 0,1,2 on the day (with some system of separating tied places) due to its simplicity, then I'm happy. The new system can still run in the background to provide tournament ratings and seedings should we need them. In fact, that might even be better, as settled grudges shouldn't count towards tournament ratings. (Although perhaps some alternative reward altogether should be awarded for grudge wins rather than points on the day even?)

    4. I'm all for using the new system in full (that last comment wasn't sarcasm - I do enjoy the suspence of not knowing). If we stick with win/lose/draw doesn't that raise the original problem of what counts as a draw?

      Would be nice to fold grudges into this system though - what about adding it as a set VP bonus before calculations begin?

    5. Re draws: true. Also the new system makes it very difficult for anyone to finish on nil points (though of course it's still possible!)

      I agree it would be *nice* to fold grudges into this system, but one of the beauties of the system is that it is comparable across boots - as Kraken (almost) correctly said - there's 2 points available for each bout and they're shared based on the wuppass doled/taken. To incorporate grudges into the new system would have to still fit with this. One suggestion would be that: if you win a grudge match, you steal (a yet to be agreed token amount of) victory points from your opponent. This keeps the total available for each bout constant and has the added advantage that grudges could swing back and forth between players from Boot to Boot creating epic tales of one-upmanship! Thoughts?

    6. Ah, having re-read Stylus' suggestion, I understand and now concur: if, by the letter of the rules (winning by 100VPs or more?) you win a grudge match, then you are awarded (a yet to be decided number of) bonus VPs. Can I get a "Hell yeah!"?

    7. HooAH!

      (Heard, Understood and Acknowledged - if pronounced like a US Marine)

    8. Awesome!

      I have one tiny and optional suggestion, then, seeing as I seem to have understood what was happening (much to my own amazement).

      Something about the points scale at the moment makes it feel a bit abstract to me, simply because it's a slightly random looking number between zero and two.

      Might we consider halving the final score, then multiplying it by 100 to give a Woffcentage? Perhaps marginally easier to compare and contrast in terms of bragging rights and so on? Or is that just my poor simpleton's head talking?

    9. PS the Grudge Bonus sounds like a good plan to me. 100 points? Same as a battle standard capture? Or is that too much?

    10. Kraken, fear not: the spreadsheet already scales the tournament scores up to a number between 0 and 10 to make them easily comparable as you ask. Personally I favour this over a percentage, but I'll change it if that's the consensus.

    11. Would this be the 0-10 'Rating' in the Dropbox spreadsheet, highlighted yellow? If so, that makes sense to me ('makes sense' meaning that I can count from 1 to 10 - I'm not interrogating the formula!).

      100VPs sounds like a good start for a grudge - I think we worked out it would only have occurred once in the last WoffBoot, so it's not a game-breaker.

    12. Well, that all sounds peachy to me, then! I'm almost certainly going to be there, having checked my calendar. So 100 VPs to Kas when the inevitable happens.

    13. Huzzah! Looking forward to the Chaos Warrior battle reports - full of apostrophes and fricative consonants.

    14. Grudges

      To confirm: if a general wins (by RAW) a grudge match an additional 100VPs will be added to his total, sweetening that win further (proposed: Stylus, seconded: Kraken, motion carried).

      Additionally, Stylus points out that settling grudges (applied retro-actively to all previous Boots) happens very rarely. The original suggestion (prior to WoffBoot7) was that your worst defeat each tourney becomes a Grudge to be settled sometime in the future. This was dismissed as it was thought that (under the old "extra tourney point for a settled grudge" mechanic) the potential for settling multiple grudges at once could swing a Boot too much and thus the rule evolved into Kas's succinct explanation above. However, now we are using the new points system combined with Stylus' 100VPs idea, this is no longer poses a problem I think and therefore propose we return to this original suggestion. Thoughts?

    15. Retro-analysis just in! Applying the above Grudge parameters to historical Boots makes for epic reading. Here are just a few gems:

      The oldest unsettled grudge is from WoffBoot1: Kraken has not yet avenged his Ogres losses at the hands of Leofa's Skinks. The next oldest is as recent as WoffBoot5: both East and Leofa picked up a grudge against Kas' Vamps.

      The record for the most grudges harboured concurrently is held by Kas going into WoffBoot7: Stylus, Kraken, Yalfrezi(x2).

      The record for the most grudges settled in one Boot is held by ...Kas (WoffBoot7, unsurprisingly) - he settled all but the grudge against Kraken. And that's only because he wasn't there.

      There have been a total of 24 lines recorded in the WoffBoot Book of Grudges. Only 10 have been settled so far.

      Only once (so far!) has a double-grudge been settled (see above). I recorded it as a double bonus (200VPs, to be discussed, if you like) but although the 10 settled grudges have subtly altered scores, they have never (yet!) had an impact on overall tourney positions.

      The record for the most consistent Grudger goes to East: every Boot he's played in, Kas gave him the biggest beating. Could that finally change this time?...

    16. I'm all in favour of adding grudges, in the spirit of a) piling on the narrative and b) giving us something else to catalogue (we could have a lovely Great Book of Grudges page on the site).
      So it's a yes for me. Should we consider allowing a gratuity grudge to the GuestBooters (which are, but their nature, transient) - so they can be included in the spirit/points, or does that spoil the point of grudges.
      Maybe each new GuestBoot inherits the grudges of their predecessors (oh, the responsibility...)

    17. A gratuity grudge spoils the point, I agree. If people want Gen GuestBoot to get in on the grudges, there are two main options:
      1. The guest is treated like the rest of us, ie going into their first tourney they have no grudge but *if* they return another year, they will likely have recorded one.
      2. The guest inherits previous guests' grudges.
      Personally I prefer the former.

    18. I would plump for Option #2. The idea of inherited grudges, passed down from GuestBoot to GuestBoot, seems very appropriate.

      We're gonna need a tie-breaking vote...

  7. While we're talking stats, here is a rundown of the number of times armies have appeared in the past seven WoffBoots:

    Ogre Kingdoms x 5
    Orcs & Goblins x 5
    Vampire Counts x 4
    Wood Elves x 4
    Dwarves x 3
    Lizardmen x 3
    Skaven x 2
    Daemons of Chaos x 1
    Empire x 1
    High Elves x 1
    Warriors of Chaos x 1

    1. And depending on what Leofa chooses to bring from his Undercoated Legions, this could be the first WoffBoot entirely composed of Bad Guys...

    2. Forgive this and the additional forthcoming threadomancy!

      I thought I had confirmed a month and a half ago as Lizardmen, but there is no record, so perhaps only a few select generals knew.

  8. I would say the Dark Elves are more misunderstood than bad :)

  9. OK definitely Dark Elves for me, let the painting begin :)

    1. Looking forward to seeing them! All new stuff, or some of the older models in there too?

    2. I have a fair bit of the new kits, but I will not be fielding the majority of them. Damn 1200 points :)

    3. I guess you can only get so many Cauldrons of Blood into an army that size, huh?

    4. Only so many Witch Elves too ... I thought I was inured to GW prices, but £35 for a box of 10 plastics? :-O

    5. Yeah, but I mean, look at the stats on that. Phwoar.

    6. Indeed. You don't get many of those to the pound.

      Or the thirty-five pound, for that matter...

    7. Any bets that the forthcoming Troll Slayers will be a similar fork-out? Higher? Lower?

    8. Pricing for the Dwarves will be interesting since, unlike many of the other races, they have a universal 'look' in fantasy and the range has been neglected by GW for so long that other companies have stolen a march and brought out some very nice models.

      Avatars of War, for example, have a pretty good Dwarf range (20 plastic Berserkers/Slayers for under £30). If I were starting an Dwarf army, I'd stock all my infantry/characters from there.

      Will the new GW models be priced to match these? (they won't have to undercut, just keep the cost decent enough that folks aren't driven away to look for proxies) Or will they stick to their 'other-companies-and-the-internet-don't-exist' business strategy?

    9. I'd put good money on your latter suggestion. No money on actual dwarves, mind you, I'm not made of the stuff. GW can't even keep their armies competitive with one another, let alone another those of another company (who I think may even have an ex-employee as a concept artist, if I'm not mistaken?)

  10. Yes, I think the head designer at AoW is a GW alumnus. Mantic, too, has at least a couple of ex-employees; and the Perry Brothers have their own studio of historical miniatures. Like dandelion seeds scattering to the wind...

    I still love a lot of the GW material. Some of the new stuff is better than ever (I'm looking at plastic boars right now), but pricing themselves at the top of the market means there are fewer impulse buys, and more incentive to look around for alternative sculpts, or do conversions.

    Which is no bad thing (unless you've got shares in GW) as there are some lovely miniatures out there that are either 1) a bargain by comparison or 2) no more expensive than GW, so worth a punt.

  11. It's interesting that so many of these exes seem willing to try and provide good, cheap armies. Perhaps an underlying schism with GW marketing practices?