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sábado, 23 de fevereiro de 2013

Pitch Perfect

There is a thread running on TFF where people have been asking (and telling) how many pitches do you own. That made be stop and think, having thought about it I figured firstly the answer is probably 'too many' and secondly it might be a good thing to share some pics and general ramblings on the blog, so here goes...


GW ORIGINAL (current edition)

Classical Good Looks!
Now this being the one that comes in the box set, and has done for years, you might think it was my first pitch.  In fact it is actually a fairly recent acquisition from eBay.  I bought it with the intention of drilling holes at every corner on each square of the pitch so I could use it as a template when making other pitches.

So far though I've been reluctant to deliberately vandalise something so it's still intact even if I have never actually played a game on it to date!  I'm sure you're all familiar with the general make up of a standard pitch but in case there are people reading this blog who are unfamiliar with it; it's made of nice thick cardboard, can withstand spilled beverages and folds down quite small for easy carriage.


Playing Bloodbowl is thirsty work
I bought this one from somebody who was trying to raise money for house rennovation by selling off some of his bloodbowl collection.  It has several cool features such as built in scatter templates and a weather chart to save flipping through the rule book when you make that roll, not to mention reminding both players what the current weather is.  That being said it would of been slightly more helpful if the weather effects had also been squeezed on somehow.  This board is of similar quality to the GW Original and folds down in the exact same manner and to the same size.  In my case it has something else in common with the GW Original in that it is one of the two pitches in my collection that I have never used to play Bloodbowl on!  It does however have one more pretty cool trick up it's sleeve (I bet you didn't know Bloodbowl pitches have sleeves!); it's reversible!  On the flip side is a streetbowl pitch.  Pretty cool huh?  Although not cool enough that I've actually played a game on it yet....

Jumpers for Goalposts?


Somewhere around here is treasure
People who've been following this blog for a while will already of seen this one, as it was made specifically for my human team the Pugwash Pirates who I themed to within an inch of their scurvy lives.  I put the map together from scratch using photoshop and then sent it to Sanabeso who put the pitch markings on as I requested and then printed it and posted it to me.  He actually did this twice as the German Postal system contrived to lose the first one!  The pitch is made of a durable material that is waterproof.  It rolls up very easily for transport but importantly it also rolls out flat to provide a good playing surface.  Now this one has seen around 40 games and been to both Dungeonbowl IX and the NAFC 2012.  Everbody say Aaaargh!
Rolled and ready to set sail..


A Storm blowing
Again you may be thinking this is familiar as it has already been on the blog.  I won this as a prize when I was lucky enough to win my local tournament last year the Sturm der Hiebe.  It is made of some sort of plasticard I guess and is one of the puzzle pitches made by FF Fields.  It features built in dugouts, scatter templates, kick off table, weather table, turn and reroll tracks and a score counter.  The score counter isn't really sufficient though when playing with or against Skaven or Elves in my experience to date!

The Puzzle Pitch concept works really well and I haven't yet met anyone who isn't satisfied with the end product which is totally customisable in consultation with the company (I think the guy's name is Alex).  I have heard it can take some time to get an answer back from him occasionally but it is worth any wait.  I've used this pitch several times.


My he's cute, can I stroke him?
 Another puzzle pitch this one made for my old gaming club in Lincoln.  It is still going strong I just live too far away now (600km or so) to attend on a club night!  I swapped an Arminia Bielefeld home shirt for it.  I'll leave you to decide who got the best deal but both parties are happy with the trade.

Like the S d H one above it features built in dugouts, scatter template, kick off table and both turn and reroll tracks.  It doesn't have a weather table though but it is more generous when it comes to the score track!  I'm using this pitch this season as the home turf of the Beastwick Wytches my Pro Elf team. A handy tip for anyone who is either thinking of buying one of these pitches or already has one - plastic album covers are perfectly sized to keep a pitch in, together and protected.  They can also be picked up cheaply either from a record store (if you can still find one!) or from eBay.



Big Guys need a bit of elbow room...
I'm going to show these in the order I built/ made them in.  Actually I made most of these before I ever bought a pitch.  I'm not sure if that is the usual way round but it's the way I did it!  Of course with FF Fields and Sanabeso out there now as well as Impact offering the discerning bloodbowler of today so much more choice than ever before; may be home made pitches are not such an obvious choice for anyone not wanting the GW offering as they used to be.  First up and starting big is my Ogre Pitch with 40mm squares.  It is made out of construction site polystyrene and has the lines engraved in to the surface.  I then flocked it with several different colours of flock using PVA glue and then once it had dried painted on the white lines.  A 40mm pitch has two main issues; firstly it's more difficult to transport that a standard pitch because of sheer size.  Also, even though the polystyrene is fairly sturdy, because I didn't want to risk it snapping it has a wooden backboard which makes it solid but also quite heavy.  Secondly you can't use the standard pass ruler, as you can see I got around this by building a wooden pass ruler to scale.  Nowadays there are easy to find passing charts that you could use instead.  I'used to play on this a lot but nowadays I'd only use it when playing with or against Ogres, or maybe Chaos Pact.  It isn't sophisticated in any way, doesn't have it's own dugouts etc but as a first effort I was pretty pleased with it and it still 'does the job'.


A painting canvas pitch - usual result a draw?
 This one was born out of a desire to have a more portable solution.  We rarely play in the same place all the time; normally either travelling to a club or various friends houses.  Even if we play in the same place most of the time life often gets in the way and means we need to use the table for something else occasionally, meaning the pitch needs to be stored.  This one was made out of two painting canvasses with hinges to keep them held together and clips .  I then fixed sheets of railway modelling grass to the canvas marked out the pitch, with the requisite 29mm squares, and then painstakingly sewed in lots of crosses to make the squares obvious.  Then back to the tried and trusted white painted lines.  I made dugouts out of balsa with holes drilled to make the turn and reroll tracks.  This was then flocked and painted as you can see in the picture.  As markers I used Dwarf referee and elf cheerleader figures fixed to wooden dowels.  The pitch folds up, has room inside for dugouts, pass ruler and templates and has carrying handles.  It's seen a lot of games!


There's blood on the pitch....
This one was designed with built in dugouts.  It too is meant to be easily transportable so folds in half.  I've again played with photoshop in this case to create advertising hoardings around the pitch edge.  These hoardings are easily removable to facilitate transport on the one hand and in case they bothered my opponent I'd be able to put them to one side.  The textured polystyrene tiles were glued to plywood (the dugouts were cut out first) and the two halfs of the pitch joined underneath with one long hinge.  Turn and reroll tracks are marked out with tile spacers before applying stickers with the numbers on. The pitch area was painted brown and then dry brushed sandy light brown.  Then areas of the pitch were flocked in a random pattern.  Lots of blood has been added to the pitch over the years.  Originally there were only a few but as more and more players bought the big one....Finally as turn and reroll markers I've used blank dice from a hobby shop, painted on the designs (block dice for turn, lucky symbols for reroll) and mounted them to a standard base on a metal rod.  It's a little bit battered now but still perfectly serviceable.
Let's get ready to rumble!


The sands of time

 I made two of these for my 40th birthday which I celebrated with a small tournament called the Khemri Kup.  Four of us took part each with starting teams from the Khemri Roster and no additional skills and everybody playing everybody else once.  Lots of fun but I digress!  More commercial grade polystyrene 'left behind' by builders who did some work on the house.  Pitch area was covered in sand and the squares were marked out this time with nails before, yes you've guessed it, painting the white lines.  The dugouts were printed out and stuck on originally.  The turn markers were made from pillars with egyptian icons.  The reroll counters were then placed over the nuber of the turn that they were used in.  Something I picked up at tournaments which shows when you used your rerolls and stops you 'accidentally' using a second one in the same turn.  A scatter template was also placed in the middle between the turn tracks.  The drawbacks for this pitch are: it doesn't fold so transport is harder and the sand has turned out to be quite abrasive so you need to be careful when placing figures prone.


It's a blood bowl pitch!
 These are made to be ultra transportable with everything you need for two pitches (except teams) in one tube,  Made from 'model railway grass paper' I'm sure it has a technical term but I don't know it!  The clips on the end mean it lies nice and flat straight out of the tube.  Similar clips are in the tube for the dugouts which were printed on A3 using colour printer before being cut to size and laminated.  The markings are done with a marker pen apart from the white lines which this time are not painted but use a special paint type pen.  The tube is a section of drainpipe from a DIY store.  One of the ends is fixed the other when removed can be used to throw dice in to.  The tube also contains four dugouts and a tin with a scatter template on top that holds dice and tokens.  The tube is covered in more of my blood bowl adverts.  This concept proved so popular I've since redone it for a friend.  It can be seen in use at Gobstyks, the club I mentioned earlier. 

 And Finally.........Blood Bowl 7's

 Made using the same techniques as the polystyrene tiles pitch.  This was my first attempt to get my son Alexander interested in Blood Bowl but it came a little early in his life and has only been played on once I'm afraid.  It is designed to be used with the rules for Blood Bowl 7's where a game should be possible in a lunch time, ideal for halflings!  Smaller than a normal pitch it is easily transportable, looks good has a scatter template turn track and reroll spaces and is easy on figures.  You know what I might just have to try it out with Alexander again now he is embarking on a Bloodbowl career after all!

1 comentário:

Axtklinge disse...

Congrats for some serious pitch collection mate!
I definitely don't have as many as you do, but I feel I also fit right in that "(...) probably 'too many' (...)" category you mention early in your post...

Of that fantastic looking collection some are favourites of mine for a few different reasons:
- The Pugwash Pirates one (the concept is plain great! Also find it hard to beat that kind of portability!),
- The Gobstys (the local 'club' or 'league' spirit, related to that one makes it 'grand'! Maybe one day NABBO League gets to steps up to that leader too.),
-The Canvas Pitch (making a 'box' out of two canvas was simply brilliant).

Congrats, and thank you for another great post!