Date   : 02/02/2008    Duedate: 02/15/2008


DM-93    TURN-253

This Weeks Top Honors


(93-8660) [5-0-1,66]

Chartered Recognition Leader   Unchartered Recognition Leader

                               SHENANIGANS (1494)
                               (93-8660) [5-0-1,66]

Popularity Leader              This Weeks Favorite

ANEMONE                        ANEMONE
SHENANIGANS (1494)             SHENANIGANS (1494)
(93-8656) [2-3-1,17]           (93-8656) [2-3-1,17]



Team Name                  Point Gain  Chartered Team
1. MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)        35
2. ELLISHOOD (1493)            22      BANE'S CHILDREN (235)
3. SHENANIGANS (1494)          19      Unchartered Team
4. MIDDLE EARTH (1488)          0
5. EYES OF SET (1489)           0      MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)

The Top Teams

Career Win-Loss Record           W   L  K    %  Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns    W  L K
 1- 1*MIDDLE EARTH (1488)       24  10  1 70.6   1/ 2*SHENANIGANS (1494)       10  5 2
 2/ 4*MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)      11   7  0 61.1   2- 1*MIDDLE EARTH (1488)       8  2 0
 3/ 2*SHENANIGANS (1494)        15  10  3 60.0   3/ 3*MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)      8  5 0
 4- 3*EYES OF SET (1489)        12  12  0 50.0   4/ 4*ELLISHOOD (1493)          6  8 0
 5/ 5*ELLISHOOD (1493)          14  15  0 48.3   5- 6*EYES OF SET (1489)        2  3 0
 6/ 0*FAUX TIDES (1482)          8  20  1 28.6   6/ 0*FAUX TIDES (1482)         1  9 0

    '*'   Unchartered team                       '-'  Team did not fight this turn
   (###)  Avoid teams by their Team Id          ##/## This turn's/Last turn's rank

                                    TEAM SPOTLIGHT

                                 Profile of a Style

     This article is not the Last Word on Slashers.  But I've run a lot of them, and
I think I have something useful to say.  They were my default style when I was
learning the game; if I didn't know what else to do with a roll-up, I made it a
Slasher, armed it with a scimitar, and ran it 10-10-x until I figured out what I
should be doing instead.  Usually, "instead" meant lightening the armor and slowing
them down because they got tired too fast, activity level first, then if necessary,
offensive effort.  An amazing number of them survived and even graduated on this
     I have the details of sixty-five immortal Slashers here, warriors who,
regardless of my managerial expertise or lack thereof, managed to survive to
graduation.  Some are very bad, but lucky.  A few are very good.  Most are ordinary
warriors of moderate ability, made from the kind of roll-ups that you see every day.
I'm not going to list all sixty-five of them, which is way too many for a practical
discussion, but think of them in the background, confirming or denying suggestions
and suppositions.

     Favorite weapons:  You will find that only those weapons which may show up as
favorites when a warrior graduates will be listed as "well-suited" in the fight
reports.  These favored weapons vary with style, and I assure you they have been
thoroughly researched by players over the years.
     The eight weapons suitable for use by Slashers, and the minimum stats required
to use them, are:
     Battleaxe      ST  15  WT   9  DF   9  \\  12 in sample
     Broadsword     ST  11  WT   9  DF   7  \\   7 in sample
     Epee           ST   7  WT  15  DF  15  \\   5 in sample
     Greataxe       ST  13  WT   9  DF  11  \\   8 in sample
     Hatchet        ST   5  WT   3  DF   7  \\   9 in sample
     Longsword      ST  11  WT  13  DF  11  \\   8 in sample
     Scimitar       ST   9  WT  11  DF  11  \\  10 in sample
     Shortsword     ST   5  WT  11  DF   3  \\   6 in sample
[Data courtesy of Pagan and other managers, for which I thank them.  Any errors are
my own.]
     The final number on each line is the total number of Slashers in my sample who
had the weapon in question as a favorite.  (Just as a warning on the unreliability of
statistics, the first twenty-two warriors on my Slasher list favored an axe of some
kind over a sword by 2 to 1.  But on the group of sixty-five, the proportions are
reversed!  Tricky things, numbers.)
     Study this chart, and resist the temptation to make a Slasher who doesn't have
the stats to use at least one of these weapons well.  I can tell you from bitter
experience that you do not want a warrior who is unsuited to every weapon in the book
by reason of either stat deficiencies or style preferences.  If you haven't done it
yet, then take my advice and avoid this pitfall; it is enormously frustrating.
     Weapons not listed on this chart are not suited to the slashing style.  Really,
we're not guessing--managers have tested this repeatedly, and arming a Slasher with,
say, a war hammer or a long spear will always, regardless of his stats, get the
result "uses this weapon in an unorthodox style" (meaning "badly").  You want to
avoid that.
     As you can see from the list above, a Slasher doesn't have just ONE important
stat where weapon choice is concerned.  Over all, strength, wit, and deftness are
equally important, but there is enough variation that a warrior deficient in one area
but not the others can find something to fight with.
     Below are two dozen immortal Slashers, three who favor each of the Slasher's
weapons, their relevant stats, and their favorite rhythms.
Damoreth       ST  13  WT  17  DF  11  H/VL
Kaltho         ST  10  WT  17  DF  13  VH/L
Robin          ST  10  WT  17  DF   7  M/M
Note that none of these three warriors has the minimum stats needed to use a
battleaxe to best advantage!  That's one of the little tricks the Commission plays on
us to make sure we don't find things too easy.  You'll see others below who lack some
critical stat needed for using their favorite weapon, also.
The Kid        ST  13  WT  11  DF  11  H/L
Elin           ST  19  WT  11  DF  17  H/VL
Gilis          ST   9  WT  17  DF  11  H/VL
Billie         ST  12  WT  12  DF   9  H/VL
Anlis          ST  11  WT  15  DF  13  VH/L
Kyra           ST   9  WT  11  DF  17  M/VL
Kothland       ST  10  WT  15  DF   9  H/VL
Jane Erh       ST   9  WT  15  DF  15  M/VL
Ginger         ST   9  WT  11  DF  11  H/VL
Kirmo          ST   9  WT  15  DF  13  H/VL
Treefrog       ST  10  WT  13  DF   9  H/L
Medio Curr     ST   9  WT  11  DF  13  H/L
Goff           ST   9  WT  11  DF   9  H/VL
Tumbleweed     ST  11  WT  13  DF   9  H/L
Nelinaria      ST  12  WT  17  DF  13  H/L
Horace         ST  13  WT  11  DF  13  VH/VL
Wolf           ST   9  WT  15  DF  13  H/VL
Geladina       ST   9  WT  15  DF  12  M/VL
Rover          ST  13  WT   9  DF  11  VH/VL
Riya           ST  10  WT  15  DF   9  VH/VL
Hammir         ST   9  WT  15  DF  13  VH/L
     My habit of giving any Slasher with the necessary stats a scimitar to wield
means that a lot of these warriors never ran their favorite weapon.  But they
survived anyway, because the scimitar is so GOOD.  I really like arming Slashers (and
many other styles) with scimitars, and I highly recommend it.  Just one scimitar in
hand, off-hand empty, and a back-up on the belt.  A warrior who does NOT have the
stats for a scimitar (hard to imagine, given my basic design philosophy) is not
trained as a Slasher.

     Which brings us to the question of warrior design.  With me, if I'm determined
that a warrior shall be a Slasher, the basic design decisions are already made: a
Slasher must be able to use a scimitar.  Okay, not always.  Seven of the twenty-four
warriors listed above lack the deftness for a scimitar, which means I probably sent
them out with a shortsword or a hatchet.  But "able to use a scimitar" is still my
basic Slasher criterion.  If there are points left over after arranging that, I put
'em on will.  And if will is 11 or better, I MIGHT put some points on speed, just to
see what happens.
     You will note that I don't figure any points to be added to CN.  True, a Slasher
burns endurance rapidly and may get tired in less than a minute if running hard.  But
Slashers are offensive warriors.  They aren't out there for a long fight; their style
wins quickly by attacking, or quits and fights another day.  For the same reason, I
am unlikely to put a Slasher in anything heavier than leather armor.  (The "quits to
fight another day" strategy has offensive effort and kill desire both dropped to
moderate or lower in desperation.)

     Favorite rhythm:  As I said at the beginning, when I started playing, I used to
run my Slashers 10-10-x, and many of them did well enough to graduate under that
regimen.  But looking at the favorites from my graduated Slashers, I find no
offensive effort lower than Moderate (5 or 6) and no activity level higher than
moderate.  It breaks down this way:
     Very High (9-10)/Moderate (5-6):  2
     Very High (9-10)/Low (4-5):       6
     Very High (9-10)/Very Low (1-2):  8
     High (7-8)/Moderate (5-6):        1
     High (7-8)/Low (3-4):            10
     High (7-8)/Very Low (1-2):       21
     Moderate (5-6)/Moderate (5-6):    4
     Moderate (5-6)/Low (3-4):         6
     Moderate (5-6)/Very Low (1-2)     7
This gives you a clear idea of how the Gladiatorial Commission sees Slashers:
offensive.  In all but four out of sixty-five cases, offensive effort is higher than
activity level, and sometimes--often--it's a lot higher.  This is not to say that you
will always want to run your Slasher hard and fast, which will burn his endurance at
a furious rate, but this is what he does best.
     There is no evidence to support the hypothesis that warriors have a favorite
kill desire.
     There is no convincing evidence to support the hypothesis that warriors have a
favorite attack location.  Logical arguments based on real-life concepts do not
necessarily apply to Duelmasters.  There IS evidence to support the claim that
increased deftness means a better chance of hitting the designated attack location,
in case you wondered about that.  And even without training DF to a higher number, a
warrior appears to gain accuracy with experience and an increase in skills.

     Favorite Tactics:  In my sample of sixty-five warriors, only four have a
favorite tactic, and in all four cases that favorite is the offensive tactic Slash.
This is not to say that your warrior can't use any other tactic to advantage, because
maybe he can.  Well, okay, I wouldn't give him a Bash tactic, and probably not a
Lunge, either....  But apparently the only tactic he really likes is Slash.

Going from the general to the specific--

                                 Profile of a Warrior
                                     Black Victor

     Vic is 9-7-15-17-15-10-11, no stats trained, and he was 22-18-2 running on
maintenance at the time he received his graduation notice.  He had an advanced master
in initiative, and advanced expert in riposte, a master in attack, and an advanced
expert in decisiveness.
     According to his overview, he is very intelligent (something not always
demonstrated in his dealings with his teammates)
          Nothing short of a genius at keeping his foes at sword's point
          Does a lot of little things well
          Uses an unusual fighting style, deadly to slower, less active foes (I have
NEVER gotten an overview that claimed the warrior used a hackneyed, common fighting
style that would result in getting himself killed)
          Avoids blows well
     He's an extremely active fighter (the SP and DF)
     Cannot take a lot of punishment (low CN)
     Can only carry a very little weight in armor and weapons (low ST)
     Is very quick on his feet
          Avoiding rather than trading blows
     Can do good damage with a blow (largely a result of his SZ)
     The Commission claim he favors a battle axe, which he has never tried, and a
rhythm of very high offensive effort and very low activity level
     At the time this invitation to the Isle arrived, he was running 10-10-8 straight
across, carrying a scimitar and backup scimitar, in leather armor and a helm,
attacking right arm, protecting body, and using no tactics.  Sunset (DM 21) is not an
easy arena, but this strategy--you'll note that it is not his "favorite"--got him out

     But suppose he had the same stats but some other style.  What difference might
that have made?  None to his ability to take and deal out damage, but more than you
might think to his initial, or base, skills.  Several managers (Sir Boyd and Pagan
are prominent among them, but I know others have helped, all unsung) have done a lot
of research, analysis, and experiment on the relation between a warrior's starting
stats and style and his starting skills.  (Note that a warrior's starting skills may
not be exactly what the charts would lead you to expect.  There is a luck factor; a
warrior may sometimes have more or fewer of a given skill than expected.)  His
ability to take and deal out damage, and to carry or not carry weight would have
remained the same, but....
     This is how Vic would have stacked up as a warrior of another style in the
skills department:

Style  Init  Rip  Att  Par  Def  Dec   Total
  AB      5    3    6    1    5   10     30
  BA     12    7   10    1    3   10     33
  LU     13    7   12    1    7    9     49
  PL     10    7   10    3    5    8     43
  PR      8   11    6    3    3    6     37
  PS      8    7    6    3    5    8     37
  SL     14    7   10   -1    5    9     44
  ST      9    7    6    0    5   10     37
  TP      8    7    4    7    5    6     37
  WS     14    7   10    5    5    8     49
All styles are not created equal, but have their own various strengths and

     Do you look at this chart and wonder why all warriors aren't created lungers and
walls of steel?  Well, a lot of them are, especially lungers.  Some die of that low
CN, inability to carry much armor, and lack of parry and defense skills.  Some fall
victim to bad matches, develop losing records (this warrior is NOT at his best
against a long-haul total parry, for instance), and get sent to the Dark Arena.  Some
managers simply LIKE to play other styles, and can make up in skilled management what
the warrior may lose on the initial roll-up.
     Which brings me to an issue I would like to just mention to those of you here
who are new managers.  You can design warriors to maximize starting skills.  Let's
suppose that Vic's initial roll-up had a ST of 7 and I decided NOT to add two points
to it.  I could have put those points on either WT, WL, or DF, the three most skill-
rich stats and had more skills for him to start with.  But with a ST of 7, I couldn't
have counted on getting at least normal damage done, even with his big SZ, and
"little damage" has been the end of many warriors.  What good are skills if you can't
take your opponent down?  If I'd accepted a lower CN, I could have put more points
into stockpiling skills... and maybe gotten a "very frail" warrior, one who couldn't
survive a blow.  What good are skills if you can die from a single blow?
     Good warrior design is a balancing act.  You have to know what you expect of the
warrior: is he to be a long-term project, destined to dominate high-end play, or a
dixie-cup short-term warrior?  A short-term warrior can get away with a lot of
"design flaws" that would be disaster for a long-termer.  He can get away with being
very frail, or having a WL too low for training up stats.  He can be experimental.
But the first requirement for a long-term warrior is that he survive to reach the
Isle and immortality.  Skills alone are not enough for that.

Middle Way

P.S.  If there's something you'd specifically like to hear about, ASK.  I don't know
what your questions are if you don't ask 'em.

           +>]H[<+-----+>]H[+ Question of the Week #4 +]H[<+-----+>]H[<+

     The Question of the Week is posed in Aruak City (DM 11) by Hanibal, a manager
who is himself an alumnus of Noblish Island.  The answers are provided by other
managers in that arena.  Any manager here in Noblish who wishes to pose a question to
the more experienced managers of Aruak City, feel free to do so, either by sending in
a personal directed to DM 11 and identifying yourself as a manager from Noblish
seeking enlightenment, or by posting the question here, in which case I will be glad
to see that it reaches Aruak.
     Also, Hanibal sends you greetings and asks that we remind you that all arenas do
not have the same attitude and local conventions.  Aruak City is an Andorian arena
and subscribes to the doctrine of Honorable Play, meaning, no down-challenging except
from the throne or in bloodfeus, no deliberate attempts to kill the warriors of other
managers, and a general attitude of friendly respect toward the other members of the
arena.  It is, in fact, a fine arena, and one where you would all be welcome (though
there are plenty of others--just ask, and I'll be glad to tell you about my
favorites). -- Jorja

Question, turn 405:

All -- If I had a warrior blessed +4 in all areas, maxed out with all 25's would I
have a chance to beat the top warriors in Primus or Gateway?  RSI says you get better
as you gain FE.  Some of those warriors have 10 years of FE.  How could one ever
compete? -- Hanibal's Q.O.W.

Answers, turn 406:

Q.O.W. -- A warrior as you have described would definitely be a viable contender at
the top of Gateway!  Maybe even the best.  Experience, though helpful, is vastly
outweighed by raw skill.  Plus, a great set of favorites make's such a warrior much
better.  If worked properly, a warrior +4 in everything could possibly TC a couple of
times and use those prizes to make them better.  Young warriors are continually
making gains into being competitive with the top of Primus and Gateway.  It just
takes a lot of time.  Donatello and some older warriors used to be the very best, but
younger ones have upset the balance.  Nothing is set in stone. -- Adie
P.S.  Not that I've had much luck chipping at that stone.  It's very difficult when
you're a small manager.

Hanibal -- If that hypothetical warrior you speak of had one of the fighting styles
that were suited to high end competition, then it would be very competitive.  Let's
say you went whole-hog and made it a lunger.  Being bonused by four in every category
would make it one of the very best.  But it just doesn't happen!  Ask the Consortium
how many +24 warriors they've had.
     Total FEs have a slight, even marginal effect, on the outcome of fights.  Having
good favorites is more important, and the amount of tourney prizes used on a warrior
cannot be discounted either.  If you're trying to choose which tourney class to try
and TC, I would advise something lower than Primus or Gateway! -- Generalissimo

Hannibal -- Regarding your question of the week:  Does their long experience make the
top warriors in Gateway unbeatable?  I have no personal experience with Gateway and
don't care to get any at this point, but a manager who IS in Gateway says, No, the
top warriors in Gateway are not unbeatable.  But the critical factors include not
only the warrior's abilities but those of the manager. -- Leeta

Not a question of the week, but something else you might find interesting.  Thank of
it as an alternative to all the "How to make a perfect whatever" articles.

Jorja -- In dm 12 Riztab you asked me what I'd do with a certain roll-up wich wasn't
too good: 12-16-12-3-9-12-6.
     IF I wanted to actually play this monstrosity of brilliance, then I would do so
only for a limited time it depends upon what I can challenge in the arena but let's
say there are a lot of poor endurance weaklings, and/or a lot of Scum TP's.  Then I
would run this guy until I didn't have a descent chance to get my challenges through.
There seems to me only one option for this guy: 17-16-12-3-13-12-11  Basher.  He has
a 50-50 chance to get tremendous damage capability.  If he only gets Great Damage
then DA him.  If he gets his Tremendous damage then what you do is challenge EVERY
scum TP you possibly can, and since they are scum TPs they are prime targets for
down-challenging. Its not like you are picking on them; they are scum.  This guy has
a 100% chance to get Good endurance.  I would ONLY run a 10 Kill-desire and try to
kill things, but perhaps multiple wins over the same warriors is beter than being
bloodfeuded by a warrior that can beat you.  I would ONLY run with the MAce.  You
could go ahead and use a HL or a ML for those TP's but at tremendous damage and a
MAce you shouldn't get any bounces, and plenty of massive damage statements.  Only
use a MODERATE OE with a 1 AL starting in minute 3.  USE BASH.  Minute 1 and 2 go
with a scum TP strategy but use response.  No armor of course.  Now for all other
match-ups you go out like the scum you are: APA+F MA+LG  (well-suited to the weapons
selected), and run a triple-10 trying to get the jump, desperation should mimick your
minute 1 strat.  Minute 2 onward just drop the AL to LOW and then to VERY LOW.
Physicals for this guy are: Good endurance, can sustain a Tremendous amount of
damage, can carry a Tremendous amount of weight, can do a Tremendous amount of
damage.  This kind of warrior is much more fun than a Scum TP.  He should beat any TP
as long as you follow my guidelines.  During random match-ups you will have some
definate good chances to kill those weaklings that can't do enough damage to get
through the plate and the hit-points.  If you don't want to kill then I advise not
droping your KD below a 6.  The problem is that although you can take a lot of hits
like a TP you can't parry any of them.  If you can't start swinging sometime in
Minute 2 then your chances to win are slim against those random offensive matchups. -
- Pagan

Question, turn 406:

All -- Does having a lot of initiative skills help to steal initiative or is it all
riposte skills?  Is there a difference between "seeking the counterstrike" and "tries
to steal the initiative" or is it the same thing, but a different statement. --

Answers, turn 407:

Hanibal -- QoW:  If two warriors are fighting and one has a great deal more init.
skills than the other, it is possible for the initiative in the fight to get taken
without a riposte.  It doesn't happen an awful lot, but it isn't shocking to see it
happen.  Ex: A friend had a basher that started AE init on the rollup.  His first
fight he matches against an aimed blow.  The aimed blow wins decise, hits him once in
the head, and without going desperate or anything, he just starts swinging and beats
the poor aimer just like that.  You probably know that aimers usually tend to lack
init skills, so in that case the difference in total init allowed the basher to just
steal it.  Even when ripostes are involved, init still plays a role.  If you've seen
a warrior repeatedly make riposte attempts, only to get attacked again, then its
because the defending warrior's init was insufficient to allow him to attack after
the riposte.  Alternatively, styles like plungers and wastes make fewer attempts to
riposte, but their attempts are usually successful because their init is so good.  Of
course, the strategy a particular warrior is using (as well as the strategy of his
opponent) is important in taking and maintaining the initiative too. -- Generalissimo

Q.O.W. -- Those fancy terms that come after a parry or dodge are successful attempts
to potentially riposte.  Then, once you succeed at getting that fancy line (your
riposte vs. their init), you make another check (I think your init vs. your
opponent's init) to actually take the initiative from them.  This is usually the
easiest way to take the initiative from a warrior.  Each riposte line is a chance to
take it away.  An example is how some rippers with low init may attempt to riposte
off of every single attack, but they may only steal it after several tries.
     Sometimes, however, a warrior may actually just straight out steal the
initiative.  This occurs usually when the one doing the stealing has a very high
rating in init and the opponent's rating is low.  A good example includes when a
lunger gets hit by say an aimed blow, but the very next line is the lunger swinging
back.  No riposte what-so-ever!  This is much rarer.  This can also be a function of
what offensive effort and activity a warrior is running.  Warriors running more
slowly can often lose the initiative this way as they just give it up. -- Adie

Question, turn 407:

All -- Is there a difference in between an Expert and (AE).  It appears to me that
your (17, 18, 19th) skills don't seem to make a difference until you get that next
rating @ 20? -- Q.O.W.

Answer next turn, don't have the time to dig it out today! -- Jorja

      * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ *

                        ---===FREE BLADES REGIONAL NEWS===---

 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 586): NOSFERATU of DARK WARDS (Dr. Doom, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 586): SISTER Q of CULTS-R-US (?, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 580): REDBIRD of GREENWARDENS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 582): PENNY LOPEZ of PUNNY ANIMALS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 580): ARTEMIDORUS of FIELDS OF ELYSIUM (Caesar, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 578): VENENOSO of JAGUAR WARRIORS (Noachian, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 289): VAIDISAVA of THE PENTARCHY (Le Pentarque, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 571): ELVIRA MADIGAN of TRAIL OF TEARS (Jugger, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 287): OBERON of AUTUMN LIGHTNING (Bobby Bigfoot, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 568): SHEA TANN of DEVIL ADVOCATES (Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 566): THE CLAW of RAVAGING LORDS (?, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 557): TOURNEY SCUM of BUSY, BUSYTONW (Huckle Cat, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 519): MUSHAD of EASTERN HORDE (Mr. Mojo, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 264): RAGGEDY ANN of DARQUE FORCES (Master Darque, mgr.)
 DM  47 DOUBLE X (turn 259): TEMPUS of WARHAMMERS (Coyote, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 245): ADRIANN of DARQUE FORCES II (Master Darque, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 447): LELLADORIN of KNIGHTS OF ROCANIS (Jakari, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 434): THE AVENGING SCROD of 4000 BLOWS (Nuln, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 425): CIRSIUM VULGARE of BLADE AND BLOOD (Noachian, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 410): LORIN TEN KORO of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 194): LAELKORISSA of FAVORITE GUYS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 382): KIRSSARINA of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 379): DARQUE of MANAGER MUSINGS (FTF Manager, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 365): NECROMANCER of MAGIC ARTISTS (Houdini, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 472): JAMMIES of DARKLINGS (She-Puppy, mgr.)

                                      Top Teams
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 586): DARK WARDS (Dr. Doom, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 586): HIGH JINX (Jondeaux, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 580): DARK CREATION (Herbert Philip Lovecraft West, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 582): PUNNY ANIMALS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 580): DEATH INCARNATE (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 578): JAGUAR WARRIORS (Noachian, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 289): THE PENTARCHY (Le Pentarque, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 571): MID EARTH (Dirmael, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 287): LORDS OF VALHALLA (High Lord Bosk, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 568): BIG LAKE NOMADS (Den, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 566): RAVAGING LORDS (?, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 557): CHILDREN OF LLYR (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 519): MEDAL OF HONOR 27 (The Anarchist, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 264): DARQUE FORCES (Master Darque, mgr.)
 DM  47 DOUBLE X (turn 259): THE BEAR'S PAW (Kat, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 245): DREAMS OF KADATH (Reaper, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 447): KNIGHTS OF ROCANIS (Jakari, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 434): HOUSE OF GRAIN (DK Bread, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 425): CLAN GHOST BEARS (Bjorn, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 410): MIGHTY DUCKS (Woody, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 194): MIDDLE WAY 18 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 382): CORPS (Papa Bear, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 379): SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 364): UNKNOWN
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 472): DIRT DEVILS et al (The Dark One, mgr.)

                                   Recent Graduates
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 585): WINTER SHADOWS of SWEET MAGIC (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 570): KYOKO of WILL DUEL 4 MEAD (Sporkis, mgr.)
                          SPARKLE FARKLE of ESCAPADE (Scion, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 286): GERI of LORDS OF VALHALLA (High Lord Bosk, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 567): ROLAND of RILL'S GCSC2 (Rillion, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI (turn 564): SHANNON D'ANJELISA of STORM BRINGERS (The Rake, mgr.)
 DM  47 DOUBLE X (turn 259): TEMPUS of WARHAMMERS (Coyote, mgr.)
                 (turn 258): SWAMP BURP HAMMER of ALL SWAMP HAMMERZ (Hammer, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 245): ADRIANN of DARQUE FORCES II (Master Darque, mgr.)
                  (turn 244): STREET SIGN of OPEN SESAME (Crip, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 434): THE AVENGING SCROD of 4000 BLOWS (Nuln, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 409): KILLIAN TEN VIR of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 378): SLUGBAIT of MANAGER MUSINGS (FTF Manager, mgr.)

                                      SPY REPORT

     Like the magnificent Sun, rising upon the Dawn and exiling the Night for a Day, 
I, Novgorodny Vir, return once again!  The boys at MIDDLE EARTH left the arena 
dejected, after being kicked out of the top spot by SHENANIGANS.  Good show!  MIDDLE 
WAY 19 posted a nice gain, to come in 3rd.  Everybody loves a winner...  MIDDLE WAY 
19 had cause to celebrate, after TEEBI SHOSTALLO got 17 points by beating TALHO.  ONE 
EYED MACK certainly had a baffled expression on his face, after losing to KOS-MOS and 
losing 14 points in the process!  Those who hoped for a new Duelmaster were 
disappointed by CONVICTED ASSASSIN, of NOBLISH ISLAND, who despite a 0-0-0 couldn't 
overcome NOBLISH ISLAND's Number 1.  So who's the team that's been walking into 
taverns last week and ordering milk?  Sounds like a PR stunt to me.   
     A Zenmaster once told me, 'Does not the spinning wheel turn?  And do not the 
little birds cry out?'  Any ideas?  Like a horde of jackals fleeing from the lion, so 
did the "warriors" in NOBLISH ISLAND avoid SHENANIGANS.  Like a pup with its tail 
between its legs, ELLISHOOD scurried away from SHENANIGANS.  Oh, the shame!  If 
challenges were horses, ONE EYED MACK could open up a fast food joint!   
     Is there life after death?  Pragmatics (and warriors) know there is death after 
life!  Questions are being raised about the disposing of severed body parts in the 
arena.  A certain tavern in NOBLISH ISLAND would I avoid!   
     Leave me now, you base fools!  As if buffeted by forces of nature beyond my 
control, I must take my leave of this place.  Can anything compare to the pleasure of 
writing Spyreports for NOBLISH ISLAND?  On that giddy note I take my leave-- 
Novgorodny Vir  

DUELMASTER                     W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 HOLLAND 8660                  5   0  1    66       SHENANIGANS (1494)

ADEPTS                         W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 LEINAD 8700                   4   0  0    39       ELLISHOOD (1493)

CHALLENGER INITIATES           W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 KOS-MOS 8659                  4   1  0    33       SHENANIGANS (1494)
-DARK ARENA MEAT 8624          6   1  0    32       MIDDLE EARTH (1488)
-GIMLI 8623                    5   2  0    31       MIDDLE EARTH (1488)
 MAHO 8658                     2   3  1    30       SHENANIGANS (1494)
-ARAGORN 8626                  6   1  1    28       MIDDLE EARTH (1488)
 TEEBI SHOSTALLO 8707          2   2  0    25       MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)
-CANTOR SHEN 8629              2   3  0    24       EYES OF SET (1489)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
-ANUBARIS 8631                 4   1  0    23       EYES OF SET (1489)
 AKIRE 8654                    3   3  0    21       ELLISHOOD (1493)
-AKHENATEN 8673                2   1  0    19       EYES OF SET (1489)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 ONE EYED MACK 8579            4   1  0    18       FAUX TIDES (1482)
 ANEMONE 8656                  2   3  1    17       SHENANIGANS (1494)
-BOROMIR 8627                  4   3  0    15       MIDDLE EARTH (1488)
 TALHO 8657                    2   3  0    15       SHENANIGANS (1494)
 XANTIPAR WYE 8709             3   1  0    14       MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)
-KALESHMET 8632                3   2  0    13       EYES OF SET (1489)
 SALIRA TEES 8728              2   0  0    12       MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)
 VILLITA ULAN 8708             2   2  0    12       MIDDLE WAY 19 (1502)
-BALROG 8717                   2   0  0    11       MIDDLE EARTH (1488)
 BROTHER TAO 8580              2   3  1    10       FAUX TIDES (1482)
 ASSYLA 8652                   2   4  0    10       ELLISHOOD (1493)
-NECRONABUS 8633               1   4  0     8       EYES OF SET (1489)
 BO DILLY 8697                 0   3  0     3       FAUX TIDES (1482)
 BASTOR 8699                   0   3  0     3       FAUX TIDES (1482)
 GLADIUS ROSE 8698             0   3  0     3       FAUX TIDES (1482)

'-' denotes a warrior who did not fight this turn.

THE DEAD                W  L K TEAM NAME            SLAIN BY              TURN Revenge?
REBMA 8651              4  1 0 ELLISHOOD 1493       HOLLAND 8660          252   
YELHSA 8716             0  3 0 ELLISHOOD 1493       BANDIT PRINCE         253  NONE
ROSINA QUIRN 8706       0  1 0 MIDDLE WAY 19 1502   BROTHER TAO 8580      250   
ZARGON YORETH 8710      2  1 0 MIDDLE WAY 19 1502   MAHO 8658             252   

                                     PERSONAL ADS

Maho -- That was well done on your part, though you should probably have been wearing
more armor.  At least, the FIGHT was well done.  Offering me your hand after you'd
killed me, that was another matter.  I do realize that wasn't YOUR fault, and I will
take it up with the impertinent arena scribe who forced you into that tactless move.
Or somebody will take it up with the relevant people.  Probably Jorja, as the
bureaucratic types don't seem to respond well to ghosts. -- Ghost of Zargon Yoreth

Col. Mustard -- Listen, bub!  You aren't supposed to do that.  I'll meet you in the
library with a candlestick.  Be there. -- Teebi Shostallo

Akire -- Drat, I don't like it at ALL when things happen that way.  You were supposed
to make some egregious blunder so that I could offer insightful advice.  Hmm, well,
here is some advice, anyway:  Make sure your next patient is anesthetized before you
perform an appendectomy.  In fact, it wouldn't hurt to make sure the said next
patient NEEDED an appendectomy before you started in. -- Villita Ulan

Bo Dilly -- Ah.  Okay, I see how it goes.  Yes.  I can do this....  Um, you might
want to consider more armor?  And a modest backup weapon would do no harm, either. --
Salira Tees the hopeful and helpful

Bastor -- Ah.  Got a little problem with your aim, have you?  They tell me the only
thing for that is more attack skills, which can be learned or acquired by training
some relevant stat such as DF.  Yes, I know, everyone, meaning experienced managers,
will scream about "burned skills."  <deleted> that.  Let's be brutally blunt here,
you aren't a godling warrior with a great career ahead in the highest levels of the
game, and if you WERE, those burned skills can be retrieved at that same highest
level, and right NOW, if training a stat will give you a chance of more wins, I say
go for it. -- Xantipar Wye

Gavin Rule -- A rambling response here to your interesting proposition in the
spotlight last time anent armor, you have to factor in that head shots ARE more
likely to be fatal than body shots, although a blow to the wrong part of the body
(chest and abdomen are the other two "vital" aiming areas) can also kill.  And, come
to that, you can kill someone by slapping them on the hand if they don't have any
capacity to take damage.  Yes, I know:  Go to Terrablood's website and check the
charts.  I find that advice sometimes as irritating as some of you must, because I
don't DO websites if I can avoid it.  Somewhere, I have a copy of Pagan's
Enchiridion, but I'm gear up to move again and it's in a box, don't know which one.
Probably some of the managers who have been playing for twenty years have done
research on this, but they aren't writing in the newsletters at this point, so I say
go for it, if you want to.  I've thought more than once that all these old managers
making the results of their long studies available to new players takes some of the
fun out of it for the new players?  People should have a chance to figure things out
for themselves.  There's a lot of pleasure in the Aha! experience.
     I tend to hand everybody a helm regardless of style or other armor, and I don't
vary weapon choice with regard to the opponent's armor.  This is called "minimal
management," although I DO (really!) make strategy changes if something is obviously
very wrong. -- Jorja
P.S.  Perhaps I shouldn't be writing personals this late at night....

Gavin -- Further, to your first question in the personals regarding figuring the
starting skills.  Figuring mode, what is the most likely or "normal" skill level for
a starting gladiator, is relatively easy.  Just a chart.  In the Old Days, when
people were compiling these charts and guessing madly in between, it was a case of
carefully keeping track of learned skills until a rating appeared, then counting
backward from that to probable starting base.  Then came the charts and the analyses,
and Bagman, and now you're supposed to be able to deduce a gladiator's initial
skills, his bonuses and deficits, from a decryption of the various statements on the
initial overview.  I believe there are charts explaining this, and I think it likely
that people have sent me such charts and I've carefully filed them where they won't
get lost.  I 'spect they're in a box somewhere, waiting for me to move.  I'm just not
into that level detail about the game.  It's deep number-crunching, and it is so Not
Me.  I'm a lot more interested in the role-play and writing end.  What I know about
the actual game itself I have picked up almost osmotically from playing for so many
years and from being around so many number-crunching players.  Where was I going with
this personal?  Definitely a little too late at night to be writing stuff.  Hmm.
Charts.  Right.  If I find some of the ones sent to me, or someone posts the url to
Terrablood's website in an arena I frequent, I will make copies and send them to you.
Or someone else might make copies and send them to you.  Drake was doing this but has
gone inactive of late. -- Jorja

     It's http://www.terrablood.com/ that you want, or maybe you don't. -- Ed.

Gavin -- Re your diplo, which I have received.  Sure, I'll do what I can.  My own gut
feeling is that there is no such built-in bias regarding attack location, but I could
easily be wrong.  If you need extra gladiators to run tests at various styles and
targets, let me know, I've got enough of them out there active that I could set some
to doing experimental work.  They'll complain, but they always do. -- Jorja

15 January 2008
                                 Order of Lost Souls

     Where there is a beginning, there is an end.  Where there is a whole, there is a
part.  Where there is light, there is dark.  All these are found to be true and along
with the most important, when something is lost it can always be found.
     Many a person has walked this land in one form or another.  Some truly believe
that here is there and there is here but who really knows?  Among the peoples of this
great land many have felt lost in time and in place.  Some have gone as far as to be
lost of soul....
     Although most are thought to have been born into this world in a mortal way, no
one can be sure.  Life is something they have in a way but a torturous joke to them
in all others.  They live in a sense as they are here and now and having mind and
knowledge.  They are flesh and blood of one sort of another.  They cast a shadow as
all things living do.  Blood courses through their veins.
     These beings have become wraiths drifting here and there, knowing that they
truly belong nowhere.  Searching for that one thing that they seem to be missing or
the one thing in them that puts them beyond others.  These people have become masters
of many things as time seems to have no hold.  For not even time can find those that
are truly lost.  Many of these beings have drifted toward the gladiatorial games.  In
the blood and chaos of the arenas something holds them like no other.  It's the loss
of something they have never had or something they had so long ago it seems to have
never been.  LIFE.
     A few of the more shall we say "human" of these beings have settled into many
arenas around the land.  The loss of life and the crazed emotions of the arenas
giving them glimpses of things they longed for but seemed incapable of attaining.
     A number of these lost ones saw in each other something that might be able to
help the other.  They spent many a day traveling to and fro, for what is time to one
who it doesn't touch.  The more time they spent together the more they seemed to
change.  No one noticed the change in the others but each recognized it in himself.
Years passed and the changes stopped.  Each had been changed in different ways but
all felt more whole.  A discussion ensued between them.  They came to a realization
that in each other they had found parts of themselves that had been missing.  Then
came the next thought.  If they could find more of like minded lost ones they might
eventually find what they always wanted, their true selves.
     The group settled down to think things through.  They finally came up with an
idea they all could accept.  They would form an organization that through their
arenas through out the land they would seek out other lost ones.  If they were of
like mind they would be invited to join the group and seek that special something
they all desired.
     This was how it began and how it still is.  The Order of Lost Souls was formed
and the search began.  The original members numbered six.  They were Baphomet,
Blackstorm, Hammer, JGW, Reaper and Wretch.  These members of the Order spread their
gladiator stables through out the realm seeking others like them.  Through blood and
death they lived through others.  One day hoping to live for themselves.  For as they
all know what is lost must eventually be found....

28 January 2008
MAUL RATS:  Since the Bashing style has often been maligned in the forums, it is time
to give the style a little tough love with the following concept:  An ALL-BASHER
arena.  The rules are simple--enter the arena as a rookie basher.  That's it.  RSI
said I need to get 20 managers on board and I'm about half way there.  If you are
interested in taking part, PM me in the forums or email me:  chase at accesspr.com
and put D2 in the subject header.

Chase a.k.a. SwineTiger

2 February 2008
ATTENTION EVERYONE -- In March I am going to do manager lists for all arenas.  This
is part of my ongoing and undoubtedly largely futile attempt to get my lists
organized.  If you think I might not know who you are or if you think I might and
you'd rather I not share that information, let me know this month!  You can e-mail
me at Sue at solberg dash mathews dot com (replacing the at, dash and dot with
appropriate characters.  You can send a diplo to The Saint.  You can put an ad in
the newsletter.  Semaphore doesn't work so well, nor does telepathy. -- The Saint,
keeper of lists

                                  LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS

YELHSA was viciously butchered by BANDIT PRINCE in a 3 minute bloody Dark Arena fight.
KOS-MOS vanquished ONE EYED MACK in a 1 minute uneven Challenge battle.
AKIRE subdued BROTHER TAO in a 1 minute Challenge fight.
HOLLAND vanquished CONVICTED ASSASSIN in a 1 minute mismatched Title brawl.
MAHO was luckily beaten by LEINAD in a exciting 1 minute fight.
ASSYLA was bested by XANTIPAR WYE in a 2 minute brawl.
ANEMONE won victory over BO DILLY in a crowd pleasing 2 minute brutal fight.
TALHO was devastated by TEEBI SHOSTALLO in a 1 minute one-sided competition.
GLADIUS ROSE was overcome by VILLITA ULAN in a 2 minute beginner's melee.
BASTOR was unbelievably bested by SALIRA TEES in a 2 minute gruesome beginner's fight.

                                    BATTLE REPORT

             MOST POPULAR                        RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS     
|FIGHTING STYLE               FIGHTS        FIGHTING STYLE     W -   L -  K   PERCENT|
|PARRY-STRIKE                     3         LUNGING ATTACK    32 -  13 -  4      71  |
|SLASHING ATTACK                  3         SLASHING ATTACK   32 -  15 -  0      68  |
|AIMED BLOW                       3         WALL OF STEEL      9 -   9 -  0      50  |
|STRIKING ATTACK                  2         AIMED BLOW        18 -  18 -  3      50  |
|PARRY-RIPOSTE                    2         STRIKING ATTACK   30 -  31 -  3      49  |
|LUNGING ATTACK                   2         PARRY-LUNGE        5 -   7 -  0      42  |
|PARRY-LUNGE                      1         PARRY-STRIKE       9 -  15 -  0      38  |
|BASHING ATTACK                   1         TOTAL PARRY        7 -  15 -  0      32  |
|TOTAL PARRY                      1         PARRY-RIPOSTE     10 -  22 -  0      31  |
|WALL OF STEEL                    0         BASHING ATTACK     7 -  16 -  0      30  |

Turn 253 was great if you     Not so great if you used      The fighting styles of the
used the fighting styles:     the fighting styles:          top eleven warriors are:

STRIKING ATTACK    2 -  0     AIMED BLOW         1 -  2         3  LUNGING ATTACK 
PARRY-STRIKE       2 -  1     PARRY-LUNGE        0 -  1         2  SLASHING ATTACK
SLASHING ATTACK    2 -  1     BASHING ATTACK     0 -  1         2  PARRY-STRIKE   
PARRY-RIPOSTE      1 -  1     TOTAL PARRY        0 -  1         2  STRIKING ATTACK
LUNGING ATTACK     1 -  1     WALL OF STEEL      0 -  0         1  AIMED BLOW     
                                                                1  TOTAL PARRY    

                               TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
LUNGING ATTACK   HOLLAND 8660                5   0  1   66 SHENANIGANS (1494)
SLASHING ATTACK  LEINAD 8700                 4   0  0   39 ELLISHOOD (1493)
Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above.

The overall popularity leader is ANEMONE 8656.  The most popular warrior this turn 
was ANEMONE 8656.  The ten other most popular fighters were VILLITA ULAN 8708, MAHO 
8658, LEINAD 8700, BASTOR 8699, SALIRA TEES 8728, KOS-MOS 8659, AKIRE 8654, HOLLAND 
8660, TEEBI SHOSTALLO 8707, and BROTHER TAO 8580.

The least popular fighter this week was YELHSA 8716.  The other ten least popular 
fighters were GLADIUS ROSE 8698, ASSYLA 8652, ONE EYED MACK 8579, TALHO 8657, BO 
and AKIRE 8654.

                                 Article for Newbies

     This here is an article aimed mostly at you new managers to the game out there.  
This chart is a consensus of managers on the internet about how they felt each style 
fairs against all other styles at the beginning levels of the game.  Of course, once 
you get ten or so fights under your belt the whole scenario changes and you can throw 
this right out the window.  But in the  meantime, use this chart to help you get a 
feel for the game, how the  different styles interact with each other and to hopefully 
dispel those 5-25 starts that can make you drop the game.  Hope this helps you some.

                         KEY FOR ODDS OF WINNING:

              1 - ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE     6 - BETTER THAN EVEN
              2 - HARDLY LIKELY         7 - GOOD CHANCE
              3 - NOT MUCH              8 - HIGHLY PROBABLE
              4 - SLIGHT CHANCE         9 - MOST DEFINATELY
              5 - 50/50                10 - ALMOST GUARANTEED

                   Reminder:  Left Row vs Top Column

          BA    ST    LU    SL    AB    TP    PS    PL    PR    WS  
    BA     5     2     6     6     8     9     7     6     5     6
    ST     8     5     8     9     9     6     7     5     6     4
    LU     4     4     5     6    10     5     7     7     9     6
    SL     4     1     5     5     8     6     8     7     8     9
    AB     2     2     2     4     5    10     6     6     6     7
    TP     3     4     6     4     1     5     7     8     6     5
    PS     3     3     3     4     5     4     5     4     5     4
    PL     5     4     3     3     6     2     7     5     7     6
    PR     7     5     2     2     4     5     6     3     5     4
    WS     5     8     6     2     4     6     7     5     6     5

    There you have it folks.  I would personally like to thank all the managers on the 
internet who made a contribution to this effort.  You know who you are.  Also a big 
nod of appreciation goes out to the mighty PUG (Ben Hitz) who organizes and runs the 
roundtable and without whose effort little projects like this would prove quite 

                              David Gottwald - Magic Man

                              The Crew - Monuntial (34)
                           Rocky's Heroes - North Fork (47)
                       Tragedy Strikes - Andor (57) (inactive)
                              Natural Born - Illis (59)
                               Slow & Easy - Aradi (60)
                           Omega Squadron - Dragonhead (72)

                          MAKING YOUR CHALLENGES GO THROUGH

     First, you need to be sure you are making your challenges correctly.
     1.  Are you writing down the warrior I.D. number of the warrior you want to 
     2.  Is your handwriting clear?
     3.  Is the warrior you are challenging within range of your warrior?  Warriors 
can challenge within their own class and the next higher class, plus the "Challenger" 
classes can also challenge the next lower class.  So, an Adept can challenge Adepts 
and Challenger Adepts.  A Challenger Adept can challenge Adepts, Challenger Adepts, 
and Champions.  (Try not to challenge down, though.  Besides being unsportsmanlike and 
making everyone mad, it isn't advantageous to your warriors.  They need to fight more 
experienced warriors so they will learn.)
     4.  Are your warriors eligible to make challenges?  If they didn't fight within 
the last two turns, then they can't challenge.
     5.  Are the warriors they want to fight eligible to receive challenges?  If they 
didn't fight within the last two turns, then they can't be challenged.

     Next, adjust your choices for the maximum likelihood of getting your challenges.  
There are several things that will help:
     1.  Have each of your warriors challenge two different opponents from two 
different teams.  That way, if the first opponent's team doesn't fight that turn, you 
still might get your second challenge.
     2.  Use your avoids.  Have each warrior avoid the teams of whoever you think 
might be likely to challenge him.  If you can get out of being challenged, that 
increases your chance of getting your own challenge through.
     3.  Don't challenge warriors who didn't fight last turn.  The odds are higher 
that they won't be fighting this turn.
     4.  Don't challenge warriors who might be involved in a bloodfeud (either as the 
killers, or the avengers).  A bloodfeud challenge has priority over all other 
     5.  Don't challenge Tournament Victors.  A TV challenge has priority over all 
other challenges except bloodfeuds.  You'll need to do a little research in back 
issues of the newsletter to find out who the TVs are.
     6.  Don't challenge warriors who you know are going to challenge someone else, or 
are going to get challenged by someone else.  Your challenge has a better chance of 
getting through if it is the only challenge to that particular warrior.
     7.  Don't challenge the "easy pickings."  That is, warriors above you who have 
way too few fights or very bad records for where they are ranked.  They will tend to 
get challenged a lot.
     8.  Don't challenge warriors who are likely to be avoiding your team.  This 
includes any warrior your team fought within the last two turns.
     Well, it sounds like I've eliminated just about everybody, doesn't it?  Of course 
you can challenge opponents who fit into one or more of those categories; just try to 
find ones who don't.  Your idea candidate for a challenge is:  A warrior ranked 
somewhat above your warrior in the same class, or in the next higher class, with a few 
more fights than your warrior, and a winning record, who isn't a TV and isn't 
currently at war with anyone.
     I hope this will be of some help to you.

                                                  The Rogue She-Puppy


     When you get your turn results in the mail it is very important that you squeeze 
as much enjoyment as possible out of that envelope!  I recommend (and also use!) the 
following procedures.
     First, open the envelope lengthwise with a letter opener.  Remove the blue-sheet 
BUT DON'T LOOK AT IT!  It may tell you that you are broke and owe RSI a lot of money.  
Flip it over instead!  The blue-sheet will be used as a "hider" when you read the 
fight results line by line, so you don't see the end of the fight by mistake and ruin 
the excitement.
     Remove the rest of the sheets in one smooth maneuver and place the flipped-over 
blue-sheet on top of the pile, without looking at anything.  You don't want to 
accidentally uncover an unexpected replacement rollup.  This is a traumatic experience 
that should be avoided at all costs, as it indicates that one of your battles didn't 
go exactly as planned.
     Now you must prepare your room, or whever you are, for the battles.  If you are 
suicidal, or a lousy manager, or a suicidally lousy manager, remove all sharp objects 
from the area.  If you happen to manage an entire team of scummy warriors it is okay 
to leave a loaded musket nearby.
     The next step is to put on music.  It definitely adds to the experience to have 
your favorite tunes playing in the background, preferably AS LOUD AS YOU CAN GET AWAY 
WITH!  I christen each new warrior with a song that is his and his alone, and play 
that song whenever it is his turn upon the sands.  It is a personal choice but I 
recommend Judas Priest, Manowar or Metallica.  Avoid Abba and Barry Manilow (like I 
had to say it).  It is also important to match the song length with the expected 
length of the fight.  Don't choose "The Immigrant Song" for your 21-con Ultra-Scum.  
Likewise, don't choose "Stairway to Heaven" for your quick lunger.  Finally, sometimes 
it is nice to choose an exceptionally violent alternate selection for those 
     Now you are almost ready!  The final preparatory step (optional) is to prepare a 
pot of coffee.  Beer also works well, especially on Fridays, but I understand that 
some managers are not Well-Suited to that particular beverage.  I've heard the Duke 
Malibu in Solven drinks goat blood, but mind you this is only a rumor.  For the final 
touch, try putting on any handy armor you have.  Or a loin-cloth.  I put on most of my 
hockey gear.
     The fights are on!  The music is loud!  The coffee is good!  Read the fights 
slowly, line by line using your blue-sheet as a guide.  Don't go too fast, now.  Yell, 
"Yeah!" if your warrior scores an especially gruesome hit.  Cringe if your warrior 
feels the joys of a great axe connecting with his face (that means you, Marilith).  
Raise your fist in the air when that total parry realizes that his last shield has 
broken!  And cry when your favorite gladiator is gravely injured and then takes ten 
consecutive war hammer shots to the head...
     When the end of the fight comes you will be emotionally drained, so yell out, 
"Huzzah!!!" or "Damnnn!!!" or whatever, to take the edge off.  When the fighting is 
ended take a breather before preparing for the next cycle's fights.  Reflect on what 
has transpired and make a few notes.  You'll be a better person (and manager) for it!  
Isn't Duelmasters great?

Brought to you by ICE (the deranged): DM-49 (Vithicar) Rotting Livers (205)
                                      DM-10 (Kolact) Beermacht
                                      DM-22 (Solven) Steel Warriors
                                      DM-24 (Zorpunt) No Escape

                           Winning With the Average Warrior

     Hi!  The Master of Anime here...  Yeah, yeah, I know, you're all doing a 
collective, "Who the Hell is this character?"  Well, my claim to fame, if you can call 
it that, is that I run Eve, one of the more popular, if not completely unspectacular, 
warriors to fight in Alastari.  I am a micro-manager (you've heard of mega-managers?  
Well, think in reverse) who has been mainly running only one team during my 8+ years 
of Duelmasters.  This little write-up is aimed towards the less experienced managers, 
the ones that can be brainwashed from some of the "How to build the perfect 
warrior..." spotlights that tend to appear from time to time.
     Many of the "How to build..." spotlights tend to deal with roll-ups that are 
quite ideal, but in reality, rarely come out of RSI's number crunching machine, 
commonly referred to as "the Roll-Up Gods".  There have been a few good articles on 
how to design skillful warriors from 'average' roll-ups.  Those articles, in my 
opinion, are the most helpful to new managers for the simple fact that you will almost 
always get an 'average' roll-up.  Occasionally, that 'average' roll-up might turn out 
to be something special, and that is what I would like to key in on.
     I know a lot of managers who will continually DA their warriors until they get 
something that is as close to perfect as possible.  You know, the warrior with three 
or four 17s or the warrior with a couple of 21s or that size 3 or 4 warrior, etc...  
If you are a relatively new manager and you are also doing this, I think you are 
missing out on one of the more intriguing aspects of this game and that is warrior 
     Being a micro-manager, I do not have an army of warriors like the mega-managers 
do, but I'd like to think that I can hold my own against them (hey, if you're gonna 
dream, dream big).  Anyway, back to the point.  One of my 'average' warriors seems to 
have achieved a form of notoriety in Advanced Duelmasters to the extent that even the 
ever quiet Mirage (manager of Donatello) has had something to say (it was at the last 
Tempe FTF and my warrior, at the end of the 6th or 7th round, was listed as the top 
Primus warrior on the tourney list.)  Mirage pointed at my warrior on the list and 
said, "That, is embarrassing..."  I took it as a compliment.  In case you're 
wondering, my warrior is Akira (the reason I'm writing this article is that I've been 
approached many times of late by managers who wanted to see Akira's numbers, thinking 
he had some sort of godlike roll-up.  I set them straight).
     I'm not going to print Akira's numbers in this article for the main reason that I 
don't have them with me at this time (it'll probably tick-off a lot of managers whose 
warriors Akira has beaten anyway), but I do know this... he has about 30 attribute 
increases and only one attribute is in the 20's, that one being WL (he even got gypped 
by not getting some skills that you normally think he'd get by raising WL up the 
20's).  He won't be getting another attribute above 20 for a long, long time.  (I 
think his next highest attribute is 17... note that this is after the 30 or so 
increases...)  You should have a pretty good idea how generic this roll-up is... a 
roll-up that would probably be DA'd by most managers looking for a good roll-up... a 
roll-up that I even said, "I'll run him for kicks, but will probably retire him once 
he gets to AD."... a roll-up that entered AD with a less-than-stellar 14-10 record... 
a roll-up currently on a 20 fight win streak... a roll-up with three consecutive 
Primus TVs.
     So, before you give up on that average warrior, think again about giving him a 
chance to flourish... he might suprise you as Akira has surprised me.  Good luck in 
the arena!

M.A., a proud member of GAPPDA
P.S.  If you want to know Akira's original roll-up, diplo Anime Legends (Arena 102, 
P.P.S.  Swift -- We GAPPDA members are NOT slugs!!!  At least, I don't think we are...

                                     TWELVE TIPS

     A rookie manager asked me a question recently which prompted my "teaching juices" 
to flow.  I quote: "Just give me a dozen hints, and I'll leave you alone!"  Obviously, 
his challenge prompted me to organize my thought creating my Twelve Tips.  
     "Now wait a minute!" I hear you asking.  "Why should I read on?"  Simply put:
-- If you're an experience manager, you'll want to "clue me in" on other valuable tips 
I missed.
-- If you're a "newbie," these tips will enhance your W-L record and compound your 
     "But, are they GOOD tips?" you ask.  Believe me, fellow opponents, after 5000+ 
fights, dozens of "tutored pupils," many A.D. warriors, and a rather lofty W-L record, 
they're GOOD tips.  So here we go, in no particular order.
(I)  ASK FOR HELP--Ask RSI about the Sponsor Program.  Diplo "good" managers in your 
arena.  Proclaim your willingness to learn in a personal ad.  You'll get some 
(II) OFFENSIVES FIRST--This is not an easy game, and the basher, lunger, striker can 
be readily designed and more easily "mastered." (Whatever that means.)  Avoid the most 
difficult finessives, such as aimers (AB), rippers (PR), and probably wastes (WS).  
Get some confidence first!  Most of us old-timers yet struggle with a good aimed-blow.
(III) SKILLS, SKILLS, SKILLS--One of the most prevalent rookie errors is training too 
many stats.  Skills win fights, and in the long run, you will regret certain stat 
(IV) COLLECT DATA--The more you know about your own warrior (And even with the same 
stats, warriors differ) and the more you know about your opponents, the more likely 
you can cause something "good" to happen.  In the military/political world, we call 
this "intelligence." (Clue: ask about a D.M. handbook filled with info.)
(V) PERSONAL ADS--Don't be a jerk!  But write some every time.  Let me assure you that 
an unliked rookie cannot succeed in an arena against the local "Powers-in-control."  
You want to create friendly opponents. (When you know what you're doing--then you can 
try the jerk routine!)
(VI) TURN SHEET--Accuracy counts.  Fill it out perfectly (and legibly) pal!  Know what 
each section is for. (Reread the instructions.)  Many have been the surprised and 
frustrated manager who caused his or her own problem! (Even us "megas" blow it now and 
(VII) NO CON--Don't ever (well maybe 1% of the time) add points to constitution on an 
offensive rollup.  Other attributes may add skills; con won't.  (Just wait until you 
hear someone shout never add to con--ever.  I didn't say that.)
(VIII) ONE WEAPON--For offensives.  When you get to finesse styles, you'll understand 
why you may want one in your off-hand also.  But, almost always carry a backup. (Hands 
can be hurt both striking and defending.)
(IX) CHALLENGE/AVOID--Always!  A manager's prime purpose is to optimize his warrior's 
chances.  Challenge those you'll have a good shot at beating and avoid teams who can 
cause you the most difficulties. (Challenge warriors--avoid teams.)
(X) ENTER TOURNAMENTS--What a way to acquire skills and experience without impacting 
your arena W-L record.  Actually, you will create a positive impact in that those 
"tournament earnings" are "hidden" from other arena warriors.  Plus, tournaments are a 
real "rush!"
(XI) FIND A FRIEND--In every arena find at least one "friendly" foe.  Share opponent 
info.  With two, or more, of you sharing, look how much more "intelligence" you'll 
(XII) STAY COOL--Don't let any problem (loss, death, personal ad, error, etc.) anger 
you. (This is fun, right?)  The cool head wins more matches than the emotional one.
     So good luck, rookie!  We were all in your shoes once. (And for some of us that 
was a long, long time ago.)

                              THE CONSORTIUM
                              DM 8  Smithsonian (Curator)
                              DM 11 Bulldogs (Kennelworth)
                              DM 20 Animal Farm (Mino)
                              DM 46 Fandils (Fandil the Wise)
                              (and many, many more)