Black Orc Team Spotlight Video
We have had our first look at some actual gameplay footage for Blood Bowl 3. This was included in a new video release by Nacon, the publishers/developers of Blood Bowl 3 on 22nd April.
The video was a team spotlight for Black Orcs, a recently added team to the Blood Bowl Team locker room. Appearing first in the Blood Bowl Second Season Edition released November 2020.
However, hidden in this video are several glimpses of the games interface, animations and overall feel for what we can expect in Blood Bowl 3. Now we can assume that the footage is taken from the game while still in development, and so subject to change. In addition we do not know the platform this was being played on. Console, PC or Switch. It is likely that the interface will be suitably different to adjust to the controls systems in use. Nevertheless it gives us a tantalizing look at what we might get come August 2021.
So let’s take a look at what detail we can prise from these 5 minutes of a teaser…
Visually it looks really quite similar to Blood Bowl 2. Player animations seem close if not the same as Blood Bowl 2. The player models have certainly changed. It had already been confirmed that Blood Bowl 3 will use the games Workshop miniature range for the player models. The gameplay included Black Orcs vs humans and both seem very accurate representations of the actual physical miniatures. The crowd and stadium also look to have been re-skinned but with very similar motions.
New Skill & Trait Icons
One of the more common frustrations with Blood Bowl 2 was the player skill/trait icons. Many of these were hard to distinguish, with several being a small black and yellow square to represent the skill or trait. This even led to modders replacing these with a text based version if you so desired.
The video gave us the view of a few of the new in-game skill icons. We did not get a look at how these will appear in all parts of the game. As no menu systems, rosters or player cards were seen. But hopefully it will be easier to quickly see what skills that super Goblin has.
A Black Orc Pitch perhaps
The developers have promised several customisations coming in Blood Bowl III. This includes player modifications but also the environment the teams compete in.
The gameplay took place of what looks to be a Black Orc pitch, with the Bllack Orc logo in the centre and end zone. It appears to be some very neatly mowen dead grass or dying grass.
We have not yet seen a Black Orc specific pitch for tabletop. Could this be a sneak peak of what to expect?
Player movement range
Gone is the green and red squares. Replaced by a more subtle white outline. It appears to show Rush or GFI squares as an exclamation mark. Opposing players tackle zones do not seem to be indicated, BB2 would highlight these in red. But again, this is just some demonstration gameplay. Player options or further changes may see this changed before release.
Blood Bowl is all about decisions. Many interactions in Blood Bowl where a dice roll is concerned or an action performed a decision needs to be made. This might be deciding whether to follow or block, use a skill, or use a precious team re-roll. Blood Bowl 2 typically did this via a yes/no type of question. An example would be, do you want to use dodge.
Know it seems the questions are a bit more initiative, giving the user a greater insight into the consequence of each decision. Stand still or Follow Up
Passing targets are indicated with a different coloured circle at the base of posing receivers. The colour to indicate the range of the pass. From the brief glimpse we saw in the video. Green appears to be a Quick Pass, Yellow looks to a Short Pass.
The kick-off sweat spot is marked on the pitch.
The 2016 edition of Blood Bowl saw the introduction of the trapdoor on the printed Blood Bowl pitches released by Games Workshop. These have been a consistent feature on all new pitch designs released. But these Trapdoors are absent from the pitch shown in the gameplay footage.
Now, Trapdoors do not come into general play in Blood Bowl and only are relevant when certain special effects or play cards are in place. So it is quite possible these will just appear when they are needed. And trapdoors are generally supposed to be well hidden…
You cannot take the Blood out of a Blood Bowl Pitch
It looks like we are going to get persistent Blood splatters on the pitch. We can assume when a player is removed form the field due to a missing limb or two. Other online Blood Bowl games have had a similar affect and it seems very fitting for a game of BLOOD Bowl…
Player Menu on a wheel
Player actions seem to be available via a menu wheel. While ont all of the actions are clear we can assume they relate to passing, throw teammate, and other player actions. These look to be tailored to the specific player selected, with the example below for the troll having the projectile vomit option.
The required rolls for any action is presented as the roll required. In this example a 3+ to pick up the ball.
Also a mouseover seems to show the required rolls to break armour and also injury a player.
Strangely block dice seem to show two different designs. A white and black version of the designed that Games Workshop intruded with the 2016 re-released for the rolling animation. The other is design which is close to the original block dice design, appears when choosing the result. This is likely just a work in progress and will be finalised for the release.
Let us hope that we get some of these white dice released alongside the game!
PC Gamer magazine preview
PC gamer has also published an article in the June 2021 edition of the magazine. The author appears to have managed to get some playing time on the game with the developers.
The article includes some new images of gameplay, revealing more details of the user interface and mentions a few new features.
The turn indicator, game timer, and the team sideline items all seem to be indicated. Rerolls, cheerleaders, assistant coaches all seem to be indicated. Plus what appears to be some display options such as a toggle for the field grid. Always useful for counting those squares.
Other little nuggets in the images include a dice log and also a Bonus Time timer for both teams. This seems to be some kind of additional time which a coach can use when they need a bit more time to confirm the terrible decision they are about to make. Not being able to increase the timer limit above 4 minutes, or turn it off completely, was one of the complaints some coaches had with Blood Bowl 2. It seems some options might be coming in Blood Bowl 3.
Another interesting addition to be player emotes. Allowing the coach to have his player react to the action on field. It is not obvious how this will work in practice but I look forward to being able to make my treeman laugh. I hope they have an interesting animation and sound effect to go along with this.
A pop-up coach camera also is on screen in one of the images. Perhaps to offer advice or just shout angliy when a player fails that second Rush.
An envelope symbol seems to indicate some kind of chat option, but nothing can be seen in the images.
Check out the article in the June 2021 issue of PC Gamer for the details.
So lots of tantalizing fragments of information in both the video and the PC Gamer article. It looks to be shaping up to be a fun addition to our Blood Bowling options. Hopefully we will get some more team spotlight video and previews to fill in some of the blanks. I for one cannot wait to get my hands on it to give it a try.
And I leave you with something we have all been waiting to see… A Projectile Vomiting Troll… thank you Cyanide for making this possible!