OK gentle readers, you asked for it (well you didn’t but I’m doing it anyway). Time to start getting our heads around the beautifully violent game. For this first discussion, we’ll be going so basic, I won’t even make it onto the pitch! I’m talking Influence. Any more basic and I’d be telling you what a D6 is.
Influence. This is the resource with which your players make activations. It’s important that you think of it as a resource too. It’s not hard to waste it during a turn. All too easy to get distracted by a favourite player and fill them with Inf(luence) hoping that they can pull off something great. Much better to see who’s in a position to achieve something and spread Inf accordingly. Don’t be afraid to give someone 1 Inf just to get them a sprint back into the fray ready for next turn rather than pumping them full “just in case”, it might work but you probably shouldn’t risk it. Have a think about what your teams character plays are and how much they cost. You’ll kick yourself when Stave’s only been given 1 Inf. No Lob Barrel? Your opponent will laugh harder than when you choked a shot on goal with four dice.
The most important time for Influence is the starts. The start of the game and the start of the turn. The first turn of the game is largely about positioning so, chances are, you won’t be worrying about charges, scoring and the like. Think about getting that ball and making some momentum and getting ready for the second turn. You’ve also got a good idea who will be the most use and can Inf dump accordingly. As an example, I play the Alchemists. I know that as the game goes on I’ll need my Inf spread around the team to get templates dropped and Vitriol scoring, so I’ll give Midas a first turn boost of 6 Inf so he can sprint and get his play “True Replication” off. That way I can steal something nice and early and I won’t have the worry of finding all that Inf for him later. Let’s take my other team, the Butchers. Most of them won’t be in charge range so just a single point each to get them sprinting into position. However, loading up on Shank can get a nice first turn charge to generate momentum. With Brisket, she can focus on getting the ball or dishing out some “Dirty Knives” to help Shank and the rest. The first turn is the only time you’ll be lucky enough to have this much focus, so make the most of it.
Now we’re on to the start of the turn. If you’re going first, this’ll be the only time you can activate knowing that the opposing team won’t have moved out of the way, passed the ball or chopped you into gobbits. If you’ve got something you really want to happen, now’s the best time to do it. If the dice gods are with you (don’t forget the goat sacrifice before the game), then you can spend 4 Inf to do a charge (2 points, should net you a tackle), attack (1 point, hopefully a nice momentous dodge) then a shot on goal (don’t do a Mr Straw and fluff it now). Beautiful. You could just make sure you get that charge off which will turn an opposing player into dogfood, whatever takes your fancy.
I told you this was basic and I meant it. Hope it’s given you something to think about, especially if all you can find is a certain way to use a certain player in a certain situation. Though that is certainly useful. What do you think about Influence distribution. The secret to winning? Overrated compared to glorious scoring? A pain in the buttocks that you never seem to have enough points? Let us know in the comments below and you could win the chance to download your very own influence tokens from the Guild Ball website (I know, you can anyway, just pretend I’m nice).
Until next time gentle readers.