Blood Bowl FAQ

triple skulls
Blood Bowl
triple skulls

Frequently Asked Questions

What is it?

Blood Bowl is a tabletop fantasy football game using miniatures and a board pitch (field). It is played by two teams of up to sixteen players, alternating turns.  It's more like rugby than football, as there's no downs or anything like that. It's a fast-paced game of bashing and bloodshed, and fun for everyone. It has a surprisingly complex tactical side to it as well. Each game lasts around 2 hours.

Blood Bowl is set up as a campaign game, with seasons, tournaments, and everything. You can watch your team grow and develop over the course of the season, and cry like a baby when your best player with 150 star player points just got crushed by a lowly Skaven linerat and your apothecary fails. 

How much does it cost?

Money is always an obstacle for miniatures gaming. Luckily, this is one of the cheaper miniatures-based games to play. The basic starter box contains nicely detailed Orc and Human teams, the basic rules, and the game board and counters. 

A little about this: the current edition costs around $120, and can be found pretty easily at any game store listed in the links. New teams can be found in the same place, and generally cost $40 for a 12-person team. We don't play this one at the club, though.

The edition we play at the club is 3rd edition, and it's now long out of print. You can usually find a complete set for around $75-85 on eBay.  

Not everyone needs a game set. The club owns two base games and several teams. If you just want to play a team, there's almost always enough sets to go around. Metal teams are also out of print, so you'll have to go to the secondary market. As your team grows, you may need a booster pack containing a few more guys as well. Again, these are out of print and are no longer sold in retail stores, and usually sell for $25-$40 on eBay. Painted minis usually cost more. Be aware that most minis listed as professionally painted generally aren't any better than what you could do yourself.

The campaign rules for 3rd ed are much harder to find. They are called Death Zone, and usually sell for $50 or more on eBay. They are no longer sold in stores. You shouldn't need them, though, as the club has two copies.

Where do I find Blood Bowl stuff?

The Bookery in Fairborn has the game and many teams, and can special order other teams. Other game stores like The Hobby ShopEpic Loot, and Game Haven also have the game and teams. Amazon even has the game and most of the teams. You can sometimes find decent deals on eBay, but that's pretty rare now. eBay prices have gotten pretty ridiculous recently.

There are a lot of other third party companies making "fantasy football" teams you can use in Blood Bowl as well. Impact! Miniatures makes some sweet alternate teams; I have a couple of them. They're at Gen Con every year, and the minis are high quality and affordable. Comixininos in Spain is making some awesome "fantasy football" teams as well, but they are quite expensive.  

I would recommend looking on eBay for stuff only in the US. Shipping from Europe, England, and Canada is super expensive, so that'll raise your overall cost. Be aware of what shipping costs before you bid.  

There are plenty of third party companies selling .STLs of teams too, usually for pretty darn cheap. You'll need a 3D printer for that though.  

You can also order straight from GW on their US online store, but it's often more expensive.

What edition do we play?

There are six editions of Blood Bowl, starting from the 1st edition in 1986 to the 6th edition that came out in of 2016. Now we basically have a 6.5 edition called Blood Bowl: The Second Season, which is basically just tweaks to the 2016 rule set. 

We, however, have returned to the third edition rules. I find them to be the purest and best form of the rules. You can use miniatures and sets from any edition, although it may need some modification. See me if you want to use a non-3rd ed team like Ogres or Khemri; we can probably dig up some old rules for them.

I have to paint these things?

Yeah. It's an established fact that painted teams play better. Check out the Miniatures info page and the XGC painting guide for tips on that. I've been painting minis since the early 90s, so you can always ask me too.