The 360 version of Blood Bowl is the console version of the popular table-top football game published by Games Workshop. It's been around as a miniatures table-top game for almost twenty years, and is currently maintained as a "specialist game" by Games Workshop with a free downloadable rulebook available online. This console version of Blood Bowl offers the same experience as the table-top version, plus a real-time version that can be played on-line against opponents on X-Box Live. Note that the real-time version is NOT an arcade football game like Madden or NFL Blitz - it's simply a real-time version of the same table-top mechanics, with "freeze time" available to issue orders to your players. For those unfamiliar with Blood Bowl, it's "fantasy football" in a very Tolkeinesque way - teams of Humans, Orks, Dwarves, Wood Elves, Goblins, Lizardmen, the rat-like Skaven and the mutated forces of Chaos beating the hoo-ey out of each other on a fooball field. Rules are vaguely similar to American "gridiron" football, with throwers, catchers, blitzers and "big guys" who are massively powerful and equally stupid - there's a chance that when you need them to do something, they'll just stand around drooling! Teams are bought from an initial pool of 1,000,000 gold - they end up going QUICKLY! Any spare gold can be used to buy handy things like an apothecary to treat your players, cheerleaders to psyche up the fans, or most crucially - extra re-rolls. Gameplay is an innovative "turnover" system where players move, block, try to pick up and throw or catch the ball, or foul players lying on the turf. One team has a set period of time to make their moves with one player after another - the catch is that if they fail at a roll with one player (say on a block, or catch, or a "go for it" roll to move further than normal) then a "turnover" is declared and that team's turn is over. "re-rolls" can be bought to allow a single re-roll of a failed try, so they're VERY important! The rules convert well to the 360 interface - pick the player, make their move, and it checks the rules and rolls the dice for you. The graphics are nothing to get too excited about, but they're nice enough (some of the animations are particularly good!), and they really get the spirit of the wild, goofy Blood Bowl material across quite well! There's one-off matches and a campaign where you move your team around, playing matches, earning gold and experience and preparing your team for greater and greater tournament challenges! In closing, this version of Blood Bowl is a "must buy" for anyone who played and enjoyed the table-top game. Those unfamiliar with the original version can still have a great time with this fast-paced fantasy sports strategy game if they're willing to accept the tongue-in-cheek fantasy background that Blood Bowl unabashedly embraces.
yes: I recommend this product