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Dungeon Bowl – Death Match Review and Unboxing

Good Morning Sports Fans! While the world may be fixated on the World Cup, anyone who is anyone is eagerly awaiting the spectacle of the 2494 Dungeon Bowl Championship Final! Who have you backed? The Emerald Crusaders of the College of Life, or their rivals The Black Widows of the College of Death? Life versus Death? It almost seems poetic! But as we all know anything can happen in a game of Dungeon Bowl

In Dungeon Bowl Death Match, up for pre order today, players can recreate the 2494 Dungeon Bowl Final with this box containing both teams along with the new tiles and rules needed to play out this spectacle of a Dungeon Bowl game!

In this review we will be checking out the contents of Death Match, having a look at the new tiles and reviewing the Spike Death Match 2494 Yearbook!

Massive thanks to Games Workshop for sending us a free copy of Death Match to unbox and review. If you would like to support the site then why not order your copy through our affiliate Element Games and save yourself money too?

We have also filmed a full unboxing of the set which you can see below or over on YouTube

I think the match is about to start, so grab your halftime snacks and get ready for some Dungeon Bowl!

Dungeon Bowl Death Match Review and Unboxing

So first of all, what on earth is Dungeon Bowl? Well for those who like their Blood Bowl to be more chaotic and dangerous, Dungeon Bowl is a variant of the popular game that allows teams drawn from the various colleges of magic to have games of Blood Bowl in a dungeon! Each team is trying to score a single touchdown to win the game – however making things a little more difficult is the fact that this game takes place within a sprawling dungeon filled with portals, dangers and traps. Oh and the ball is hidden in a chest somewhere – Your dwarfs might be good at stalling a game, but they are going to have to get a jog on if they want to win Dungeon Bowl!

Death Match is a really cool supplement that lets you recreate the final of the 2494 Dungeon Bowl season with all the tiles needed to recreate the custom dungeon that was built for the event!

Two sheets of new tiles are included with each individual tile having both a “Life” and a “Death” side to represent the different environments that had been used within the final – it’s also worth pointing out that all these tiles can also be mixed in with your standard Dungeon Bowl collection in order to create some more variety to your games or even build bigger dungeons that you can with just the core box.

The box also contains two full Dungeon Bowl teams in coloured plastic – the Death team contains one of each of the two undead Blood Bowl team frames (Dungeon Bowl fans will note that a Werewolf is included here which cannot be taken by the team – this model is actually used within the dungeon as a wandering monster!)

The Life team consists of a frame of Wood Elves and two frames of Halflings, again giving you enough models to build a full team. Combined with the two teams included in the core box this gives players a nice collection of different teams for pick up games with friends who may not be already into Blood Bowl – After all, for a newcomer you are probably going to have to buy two different team boxes to make a “legal” Dungeon Bowl team, so the fact we get another two teams here is a nice touch

The final thing in the box is a very special Spike! magazine commemorating the 2494 final between Life and Death.

If you have read any other Spike! magazines then the format will be quite familiar to you – this is a tongue in cheek “in-universe” Blood Bowl magazine, in this case dedicated to the Dungeon bowl final. The entire box is framed as being a way to recreate that final, and as such you get 2 team rosters with named players for each team who have already “leveled up” and earned stat increases and skills. While you can absolutely use the contents to create your own Dungeon Bowl teams, I think this comes into it’s own almost as a board game with two balanced teams trying to get the all important touch down. In this way I think it’s actually a better intro to Dungeon Bowl to a new player, or perhaps even getting a friend or your children into the game – you just need to build the models, write their names on the back of the bases and you will be able to jump in and play with everything already set up for you in terms of teams.

We also get some special rules in order to capture the antics of the 2494 final along with an example dungeon layout reflecting the “historical match” – again I think this really leans into the idea of using this as a self contained boardgame between two pre constructed teams (Though you can totally use all the contents in normal games of Blood Bowl) – While this could have easily just been a tile pack, the fact that we get some fun rules for replaying the “actual” match really appeals to me!

Each of the tiles in the box is double sided – one side dedicated to Death and one to Life. So while these are used to create the Life/Death final dungeon, you could also use these to create an entirely Life or Death themed dungeon, or simply mix these in with your existing Dungeon Bowl collection to create your own custom dungeon.

Spike! has rules for each of these tiles and there’s some really fun stuff here! The Halfling Tuck Shop can be visited by players who can choose to eat a random snack rather than doing their action – they then roll a D6 – on a 1 they get a sore stomach and immediately go prone after eating a perilous pasty, on a 2-5 they are refreshed and get a free reroll that only that player can use, and on a 6 they try a new superfood and gain +1 ST for the rest of the game!

The Werewolf’s Lair is a really dangerous tile, at the start of the game the Werewolf is placed in the doghouse (seriously!) and at the end of a turn whenever there are player on tile a dice is rolled – on a 1 nothing happens, the Werewolf stays in the doghouse, but on a 2+ it does a Blitz on the closest player!

There’s 14 tiles in total with each of them having thematic rules built around the themes of Life and Death and even if you don’t play the “Final” as set up in the book, these will add more variety to your Dungeon Bowl layouts

We also get all the usual Spike! interviews and team write ups – while these are purely narrative they are great fun, and one of my favorite things about Spike! so it’s great to see them included here – I particularly like the interview with a halfling who has been making a scale model of a dungeon along with intricately painted miniatures that can be used to simulate a game of Dungeon Bowl in the comfort of your own home… sounds strangely familiar…

Finally we also get rules for gaining sponsorship deals that grant you different bonuses – for example you could get a sponsorship deal with Cragfall’s Catacomb Cartography in order to once per game move any player without the ball into any other tile on the board, or maybe cut a deal with Farblast and Sons Ordnance Solutions in order to booby trap chests that do not contain the ball to knock down all players within 2 spaces when opened!

The final few pages of the book gives a couple of ideas for team schemes if you are not using the two “named” ones from the supplement, which is nice considering how few Dungeon Bowl team references we have for painting up some very different looking players in a cohesive scheme.

From what was a surprise release, I have been pleasantly surprised by Dungeon bowl Death Match – the fact it adds a stack of new tiles and rules to Dungeon Bowl is really nice, however what really makes it for me is the fact that this can also be played as a self contained (Well, with the caveat that you still need to own the core Dungeon Bowl) game pitting two pre constructed teams against each other in a pre constructed dungeon that will act as a nice intro into the “full” game of Dungeon Bowl – If you have been wanting to get people into Dungeon Bowl then I think that this expansion is actually a better way of doing that than with just the core box!

Of course, if you want to play “proper” Dungeon Bowl then this box gives you a load of new tiles and rules to use with them along with 2 plastic Dungeon Bowl teams – all of which I think is good value for the £55 price tag

Dungeon Bowl Death Match is up for pre order today and is released Saturday 3rd December

Games Workshop provided Sprues and Brews with a free review copy.

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