DUEL 2 NEWSLETTER

Date   : 03/27/2010    Duedate: 04/09/2010

NOBLISH ISLAND ARENA

DM-93    TURN-296

This Weeks Top Honors

THE DUELMASTER IS

ELSPETH HAUN
MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
(93-9045) [5-2-0,56]

Chartered Recognition Leader   Unchartered Recognition Leader

POSITION IS EMPTY              ELSPETH HAUN
                               MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
                               (93-9045) [5-2-0,56]

Popularity Leader              This Weeks Favorite

HICKS                          VASQUEZ
SPACEMARINES (1555)            SPACEMARINES (1555)
(93-9037) [3-5-0,21]           (93-9038) [7-1-2,37]

THE CURRENT TOP TEAM

MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)

          TEAMS ON THE MOVE            TOP CAREER HONORS
Team Name                  Point Gain  Chartered Team
1. MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)        25
2. IWC (1554)                  19      BRUTE STRENGTH (491)
3. SPACEMARINES (1555)          0      Unchartered Team

                                       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)

The Top Teams

Career Win-Loss Record           W   L  K    %  Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns    W  L K
 1/ 1*MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)      23  11  1 67.6   1/ 1*MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)     10  5 0
 2/ 2*SPACEMARINES (1555)       23  17  5 57.5   2/ 3*IWC (1554)                6  4 0
 3/ 3*IWC (1554)                21  18  0 53.8   3/ 2*SPACEMARINES (1555)       6  9 2

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

                                    TEAM SPOTLIGHT

              + ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ The Lighthouse ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ +

     "Tinkering strategies?"  Jorja glanced around the common room of the Lighthouse
quickly.  None of her gladiators were near by, but she leaned forward and lowered her
voice anyway.  "The team here doesn't believe I ever do that, and I don't want them
to hear me saying differently, Diaretic.  They'd get expectations, and I don't have
any plan to make life that easy for 'em.  But here's the way I go at it when I'm
feeling generous with my warriors.  Mind you, this is just the way *I* do it, and
there are plenty of other approaches.
     "Say I've got a warrior who's a pure offensive style, which means a basher, a
lunger, or a slasher.  I don't count strikers, as they're versatile and sometimes
unpredictable.  Say I've started him out fast, maybe 8-6-x.  Unless he's fighting
another pure offensive, he should be first off the mark.  So I look for the problem.
If it's a problem with his numbers and style and he should have been some other kind
of fighter, well, too bad, we're both stuck with it.  I can boost his offensive
effort to ten--sometimes it already IS ten, of course, but if it isn't, then that
goes up to the top.  I can drop his activity level, say to four.  I know some people
start their offensive warriors going 10-10-x, but to my mind, this is just asking for
early burnout in a fight.  I've seen that kind of thing--a warrior comes out of the
starting gate like his socks are on fire, and by the MIDDLE, not the end, of the
first minute, he's panting and staggering, and losing.  Sure, some warriors can take
that kind of energy burn, but most can't.
     "So I tinker with his numbers, and it doesn't help, he still gets jumped when he
shouldn't.  The next thing to try is dropping the weight he's carrying.  Maybe I've
got him in some kind of mail, okay, I drop that to leather.  This reduces his
protection against blows from his opponent, of course, but everything's a trade-off.
If he gets out there first and deals a shrewd blow or two, it won't matter; he'll win
before he gets hurt.  If he's already in leather, or if I want to lighten him up
further, I'll drop his backup weapon and give him a lighter one.  Say he's got a
scimitar with a backup same, maybe I'll drop the backup to a shortsword or even a
dagger.  I'll always leave him SOME backup weapon--"
     "He'd have his fists, if you didn't give him a backup weapon, wouldn't he?"
Diaretic asked.
     Jorja shrugged.  "Well... yes, but none of the pure offensives do well with
their fists.  Strikers, maybe, but not bashers, lungers, or slashers.  They can and
will use 'em if they have nothing else, but they won't do well.  And frankly, I
wouldn't even send out an aimed blow, the CLASSIC unarmed style, with nothing but his
fists for backups.  I've seen too many of them 'struck in the arm with the parry'.
It's too risky for a warrior who's already got problems.  Unless, of course..." she
looked suddenly thoughtful, "I'm hoping he'll get killed...."
     Diaretic raised his eyebrows.  "Do you do that much?"
     "Send them out hoping they'll die?"  Jorja shrugged.  "Well, yes and no.  I run
everything, maybe send one warrior in a hundred to the Dark Arena--after he's fought
for a year or two.  There are often warriors that I would LIKE to see die, even
though I hate the hassle of recruiting new ones.  But I've never sent a warrior out
unarmed, unarmored, and with the basic 1-1-1 default strategy.  At least, not
deliberately.  There's a team I have in Murska that was running on maintenance once.
I wasn't paying attention, and no less than THREE new warriors started up there
without strategies--and survived!  They had horrible records by the time one of the
other managers managed to get my attention, 0-19 I think it was, but they survived.
Tough men, and they eventually made it to graduation, once I gave them 'sharp pointy
things' to use on their opponents.  But I don't do that deliberately."  She paused
and signaled for one of the waiters to bring Diaretic a fresh drink.
     "Where was I?  Warriors getting jumped when they shouldn't be, right.  As a last
resort, because I don't really care for tactics, I might give such a warrior
decisiveness in the first minute, also.
     "But if none of this works, if he still gets jumped regularly, then I have to
think about taking a different approach.  Maybe he'd be better off running slowly,
despite his style.  So I put more armor on him, some kind of mail, usually, and I
slow down his first minute, maybe invert it: 4-6-x or 4-8-x or something.  And then
in the second minute pop him up to eight or ten offensive effort, on the idea that
he'll catch the faster offensives when they're tired.  Sometimes it works.
Especially with beginning warriors, winning can often be a game of endurance.  He who
is still standing, wins."
     Diaretic nodded and sipped his drink.  Half-formed ideas of how he might use
these ideas on his own warriors revolved in his mind.  "What about the opposite case,
a defensive warrior who can't last long enough to win as he should?"
     "The total parry who collapses from exhaustion in the second minute?"  Jorja
laughed.  "I've had a few of those over the years.  I call 'em 'the warriors of
exasperation'.  It isn't easy running everything, you know--I end up with some
warriors that not even a mother could love, and with them, I tend to do really dumb
things, just for the heck of it.  The aimed blow with a deftness of three or four,
for instance, or the total parry with no con.
     "But for the, hmm, 'legitimate' cases of warriors running too fast, well, there
are signs as obvious as an offensive getting jumped.  'Fighting to conserve energy',
'straining to hold his weary arms at guard', stuff like that in the fight report is a
sure sign.  You can take two approaches to that, lower the weight they're carrying so
as not to burn their energy that way--lighter armor, lighter weapons.  Or slow 'em
down.  Say I've got a ripper going 6-8-x and stumbling with exhaustion in the second
minute.  I might slow this warrior down to 4-6 and see if that helps.  Heck, I've
even done that with offensives.  Back when I started slashers out going 10-10-x, I'd
get them stumbling with exhaustion and losing because of it in the second or even the
FIRST minute, and I'd slow 'em down.  Activity level comes down first for an
offensive warrior--I think of that as the 'dodging and parrying' number.  Offensive
effort comes down first for the defensives."
     "Hmm."  The younger manager frowned, making a series of linked rings on the
table top with the wet bottom of his glass.  "What about warriors who flail wildly?"
     "I've been told that this is due to lack of attack skills, and unless you're
going to train stats and burn those skills, nothing but time will cure it.  But I've
found that sometimes--not always--lowering kill desire helps.  Drop it to five, say,
if it's higher.  Dropping the offensive effort a notch might help, too.  I think of
'flailing wildly' as 'trying too hard'.  You can never be sure, of course, because
managing gladiators is an art, not a science."  She paused and half stood, looking
toward a center of commotion.  "Do you want Wednesday to get falling down drunk on
the night before the fights?"

           +<]H[>+-----+<]H[+ Question of the Week #8 +]H[>+-----+<]H[>+

Question, turn 417:

All -- Here's last cycle's question that didn't make it in (along with page two of my
personals).  What are the top five weapons to be successful in Advanced? -- Hanibal
Q.O.W.

Answers, turn 418:

Q.O.W. Response -- The top weapons in AD, or even basic DM, are generally agreed upon
to be the SC, LO, BS, and BA.  The scimitar is an all round great weapon.  Seems
easier to crit with, and even against heavy armor, still dishes out a lot of damage.
Because it's a slashing weapon, it seems to pull a lot of critical damage on normal
hits.  The longsword is the second best, though that could be contended, for its one
great ability, the knockdown!  The broadsword is heavy, but it dishes out heavy
abuse, it doesn't break often, and it is pretty good at smashing through parries.
The battle axe is just plain cool, and it is very painful!  After those four, it's
difficult to say which weapon is better.  I like daggers, though shortswords are
strong, and the halberd is really fun if your warrior can throw crits with it. --
Adie

I must have missed the question this is answering, or it was part of an ongoing and
sometimes heated discussion on winning and killing  and aiming locations in Aruak
City.
     Q.O.W. Response -- Other than the obvious ability of aiming at the
chest/abdomen/head to gain death intent statement, I think that it's more difficult
to win when aiming at the body because there are more hit-points there.  This is
especially the case against tough, armored warriors.  Attacking the body with lunging
weapons can get knockdowns, but I think that it's even easier if you aim at the legs.
If you consider protect locations though, maybe the body is better to aim at because
maybe fewer people protect it.
     The limbs, and head especially, have less hit points, so if struck, such a
warrior usually gives up sooner.  Aiming at the head can get quick victories and
death intent statements, but results in more deaths, obviously.  But I think a lot of
people routinely protect the head.  Aiming at the arms allows the defeat of a warrior
when they lose their weapon, or use of their arm, and can't draw a back up. -- Adie
P.S.  I only advocate aiming at the arms and legs in Aruak City.  Elsewhere is a
different story.

Question for turn 418, to be answered next turn:
     New Q.O.W. -- What have people seen in regards to arms that hang useless?  Can
warriors regain the use of them eventually if the fight goes on?  Can they punch or
parry with it, even though they can't draw a back-up? -- Adie

Adie's QoW -- Striking arms can cause an opponent to drop their weapon and
(temporarily) lose the use of the limb.  Striking the legs can increase the chance of
a knockdown.  Striking at head, chest, or abdomen can allow for a kill on the sands.
Chest and abdomen seem to be the locations best protected by armor.  Head can have a
different level of armor protection than the rest of the warrior's body, which can
make things tactically interesting.  From what I've seen, managers usually have their
warriors protect their vital hit locations by default, so to me it makes more sense
to aim at non-vitals. -- Generalissimo Puerco
     Is Generalissimo Puerco psychic?  Tune in next turn and find out!

Hanibal's QoW -- All of the one-handed swords make up the top tier of weapons, with
the axes and spears on the second tier (consider halberd in this group), and all the
bludgeoning weapons (and the greatsword) at the bottom.  Quarterstaves, war hammers,
and mauls are liked by some, and as far as I'm concerned, they can have them.
Unfortunately the quarterstaff recently became tied (with longsword) among my LPs for
most popular favorite weapon.  Also, interestingly, I only have one LP that favors
the scimitar, and it's a total parry! -- Generalissimo Puerco

Hanibal -- Top five weapons?  Hm, scimitar, scimitar, scimitar....  Oh, you mean
DIFFERENT weapons?  A lot depends on the style of the warrior in question and his or
her favorite.  But scimitar is up there near the top of the list for many styles. --
Leeta

The question from turn 418:
     New Q.O.W. -- What have people seen in regards to arms that hang useless?  Can
warriors regain the use of them eventually if the fight goes on?  Can they punch or
parry with it, even though they can't draw a back-up? -- Adie

Answers from turn 419 and 420:

Q.O.W. Answer:  I have had all sorts of s#&amp;t (not sure what word this was
supposed to be) happen regarding arms falling uselessly at their side: some warriors
give up, some continue on, I've even had a warrior lose his use of an arm twice in
one fight (and he still won!!!).  One thing is certain...the weapon in the useless
hand always drops in the sand. -- Dr. Strange

     Refers to last turn's question--
QOW -- Weapons?  We agree that SC seems tops with LO and BS highly desirable.  The
Consortium clan has a great affinity for these also:  BA, DA, QS, SH, WH and GA.  Not
the normal "feelings," but... -- Kennelworth

QOW --  A useless arm is a statement and since it normally comes at the end, it
"seems" to mean something, but it is similar to a dropped weapon. -- Kennelworth

Answer Q.O.W. (arms) -- When arms are struck in combat, I too have seen a variety of
things occur.  I've seen them get hit, forcing a weapon to be dropped, but then a
back up pulled immediately.  I've seen them get hit, drop a weapon, and be too hotly
engaged to pull a new one.  Also, they can hang useless after being struck.  The
weirdest thing I've ever seen is a warrior lose the use of their arm, drop their
weapon, strike with their fists, and then have one of those fists get parried, AND IT
WOULD BE THE ONE THAT WAS USELESS THAT WAS INJURED BY THE PARRY!  Strange eh?  So if
both arms went useless, you could still fight with fists?  Hmm... -- Adie

New question, turn 419:

All -- I recently tried an experiment where I gave a warrior a Primary weapon
(Broadsword) and the same off-hand back-up.  She pulled the back-up when things
slowed down in min. 2.   Does this mean she prefers two weapons or do they always do
that?  If you give a warrior two back-ups will they pull the one they prefer or
whatever you list first? -- Hanibal -- Q.O.W.

Answers, turn 420:

Answer Q.O.W. (backups) -- When things slow down in a fight and neither warrior is
eager to hold the initiative, they will usually pull any off-hand or back up weapon
they have, whether they need it or not.  It has no relation to whether that warrior
prefers to fight with two weapons or not.
     Drawing back-ups also can occur when the fight is intense.  If your weapon
breaks while on the offense, often such a warrior will draw their back up and attempt
a riposte to hold the init.  Also, if you're on the defensive and you attempt to
riposte, but you have a back-up weapon or off-hand weapon to draw, your warrior may
try to pull it. Success is not always guaranteed in either case though since your
warrior may be 'to hotly engaged'.  Even if a defending warrior succeeds, drawing a
weapon after a riposte forces that warrior to give up the init they could have taken.
But if they pull a back-up and THEN riposte, then can take the init.
     If you give a warrior two back-ups, they pull the one listed first, and if it
breaks or is dropped, they'll pull the second.  It is not random. -- Adie

QoW -- If the warrior has a free off-hand, and a backup off-hand weapon, it usually
isn't long before they decide to make use of it.  I'm guessing that OE and
coordination (anonymous source) are factors that affect the likelihood of drawing a
backup in the off-hand.  Wanna Be, manager of A Savage Few here in Aruak, once hosted
a fast draw contest where contestants had to start the fight unarmed but could have
backup weapons.  The all-out offensives would sometimes spend a full minute or more
with their fists before deciding to draw steel.  The defensives would usually draw
something the first chance their opponent would give them. -- Generalissimo Puerco

New question, turn 420:

All -- I was noticing the skill modifiers for low to high size; do these negatives
keep a warrior from being successful at the high end of the game? -- Hanibal --
Q.O.W.

We're now caught up with Aruak City (dm 11) on the Questions of the Week; they are
about to run turn 421 as I write this.  So if Hanibal misses a turn in asking, or the
managers there miss a turn in answering, we'll have to miss a turn in looking over
their shoulders.  Amazing how things follow one another like dominoes falling, isn't
it?  There is NO REASON AT ALL why you here can't pose Questions of the Week of your
own.  Send them as a personal to DM 11, identify yourself as a new manager seeking
enlightenment, and you should get a helpful response. -- Jorja

Note that Hannibal's Questions of the Week stopped some time ago and Aruak City is
now in the vicinity of turn 549.

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

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

                                     Duelmasters
                                     -----------
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 640): LIP GLOSS of HOT STUFF (Papa Bear, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 642): SCURVY LADY of SEA DOGS (One Armed Bandit, mgr.)
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 515): ROBERTO LEATHAM of HOUSE OF CARDS (Zalgor Prigg, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 636): STARIEL of DARK CREATION (H.P.L. West, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 638): ON GOLDEN POND of GOLDEN GLADIATORS (Midas, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 630): YAREK ZORN of MIDDLE WAY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 631): FARM WEEKLY of THE MAGNIFICENT MAGS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 317): CRICTOR UNGERER of THE PENTARCHY (Le Pentarque, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 628): LUCKY EIREANN of CLAN CROW (?, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 315): KOLUM MAROD of MIDDLE WAY 7 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 624): BILL P. GORE of DEVIL ADVOCATES (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 621): BITCHIN' BEAST of DIVINE HERITAGE
                                                     (Bubba Ganoosh, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 613): ORION of ON THE ROCKS (Bartender, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 576): PRINCE CONNOR of LUROCIAN ROYALTY (The Greek Guy, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 293): DAN MACK GRU of NORTHERN LIGHTS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  47 TEMPLE OF ABARSIS (turn 287): RONDOL QUIGLO of THE MIDDLE WAY 3 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 274): MRS. VAUGHN of LIFE IMPACTS (Smitty, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 503): RIA ROSEDANCER of INCONSISTENT FURY (Banthius, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 490): CLOUDGAZER of EX OBLIVIONE (Enigma, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 470): COUNTER OFFER of VIKING LINGO (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 467): LOEKER SMITH of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 222): ROS QUIN of MIDDLE WAY 18 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 427): SPARTAN 1 of GATES OF FIRE (Chief Illiniwek, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 420): QUINCY WATTS of GREATS OF TROY (Zalgor Prigg, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 413): DEVONSHIRE of KIWI CONNECTION (The Mun, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 529): JEANNE D'ARC of GORGEOUS GOBLINS (Bartender, mgr.)

                                      Top Teams
                                      ---------
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 640): BLUE MOON (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 642): SEA DOGS (One Armed Bandit, mgr.)
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 515): HARRY POTTER AND THE (?, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 636): VC RULES (Fizban, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 638): GOLDEN GLADIATORS (Midas, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 630): THE GENERALS (?, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 631): THE MAGNIFICENT MAGS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 317): THE PENTARCHY (Le Pentarque, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 628): MID EARTH (Visionist, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 615): THE KINDRED (Godric Magnesson DaVinci, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 624): ANGELS OF PAIN (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 621): DIVINE HERITAGE (Bubba Ganoosh, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 613): URBAN JUNGLE (Jugger, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 576): THE FAMILY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 293): ASAIRE (?, mgr.)
 DM  47 TEMPLE OF ABARSIS (turn 287): DEVIATION (Marma Duke, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 274): LIFE IMPACTS (Smitty, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 503): INCONSISTENT FURY (Banthius, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 490): POSITION IS EMPTY
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 470): DOCTORS (?, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 467): SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 222): BLACKMAIL (The Mun, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 427): NUMB-ERS (?, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 420): GREATS OF TROY (Zalgor Prigg, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 413): J (?, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 529): DO IT AGAIN et al (The Dark One, mgr.)

                                   Recent Graduates
                                  -----------------
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 515): DARKWIND of CARDOW HUNTERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 630): YAREK ZORN of MIDDLE WAY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 316): OTHER of EXPENSE ACCOUNT (Finance Manager, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 627): JULIANUS of EQUESTORS (Spartacus, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 315): KOLUM MAROD of MIDDLE WAY 7 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 613): ORION of ON THE ROCKS (Bartender, mgr.)
               (turn 612): MANDOLIN WIND of URBAN JUNGLE (Jugger, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 576): BITT BETRO of THE FAMILY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 292): WALRUS of NORTHERN LIGHTS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 274): HOOPS of LIFE IMPACTS (Smitty, mgr.)
                  (turn 273): KIRLA LORVIN of MIDDLE WAY 6 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 503): RIA ROSEDANCER of INCONSISTENT FURY (Banthius, mgr.)
 DM  60 COLLUSION COVE (turn 489): IMOTO-CHAN of EX OBLIVIONE (Enigma, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 465): FLITCHAK of CASTAWAYS (She-Puppy, mgr.)

                                 DUELMASTER'S COLUMN
                             Notes from the arena champ.

     Good try, Drake, but did you notice how your armor didn't do you a bit of good?
Except maybe to slow you down, and that counts as doing ME a bit of good.  How do we
know your armor didn't help?  There were no statements in the fight text along the
lines of "the armor absorbs the force of the blow" or similar.  True, it probably did
absorb SOME of the force of the blows, but was it enough to be worth the loss of
speed?

                                    Elspeth Haun

                                      SPY REPORT

     If you were disturbed from your beauty rest only to have to watch a bunch of 
NOBLISH ISLAND brutes like you, you'd be grouchy, too.  Of course, we're all terribly 
impressed to see STONES win a fight and gain 19 points, terribly.  Tsk, tsk, STONES 
beat VASQUEZ and VASQUEZ lost 13 points.  You're breakin' my heart.  Our Duelmaster 
has lost, folks, lost to KHALHUMS DWARF, BUT ELSPETH HAUN is still the Duelmaster 
because she has the most recognition points!  Kickbacks and bribes, kickbacks and 
bribes, how else do you think some of these guys win their fights?  Skill?  Ha!   
     He who fights and runs away will live to fight another day, the coward.   
     Ah, now we come to my favorite part, where we see all the guys who are dead and 
gone, and get to see if their team cared.  We're all going to die in the end, so why 
worry if the fate catches up with you sooner that later?   
     There's got to be a better place in NOBLISH ISLAND to get a drink than The 
Welcome Wench!  Any suggestions?  Well, I've had enough of this drivel, and I'm sure 
you have too.  Off like a dirty shirt of padded leather.  Paste this one in your 
scrapbooks, you'll need the kindling come this winter-- Snide Clemens  

DUELMASTER                     W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 ELSPETH HAUN 9045             5   2  0    56       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)

ADEPTS                         W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 CUSTIS FORN 9043              5   2  0    53       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
 STONES 9031                   5   4  0    52       IWC (1554)
 DRAKE 9039                    7   1  2    43       SPACEMARINES (1555)
 VASQUEZ 9038                  7   1  2    37       SPACEMARINES (1555)
 DEATH 9035                    5   4  0    37       IWC (1554)
 ARABELLA DEEDS 9041           5   2  1    34       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 HICKS 9037                    3   5  0    21       SPACEMARINES (1555)
 STYX 9034                     5   4  0    20       IWC (1554)
 HUDSON 9040                   4   4  0    16       SPACEMARINES (1555)
 DONIA GRELL 9064              1   0  0    16       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
 DELIA GARTH 9044              4   3  0    15       MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
 RIPLEY 9036                   2   6  1    15       SPACEMARINES (1555)

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

THE DEAD                W  L K TEAM NAME            SLAIN BY              TURN Revenge?
BONES 9032              4  3 0 IWC 1554             RIPLEY 9036           294  REVENGED
THOR 9033               2  3 0 IWC 1554             ARABELLA DEEDS 9041   292  REVENGED

THE DEAD                W  L K TEAM NAME            SLAIN BY              TURN Revenge?
CHUCKIE FUDH 9051       3  1 0 MIDDLE WAY 23 1556   VASQUEZ 9038          295   

                                     PERSONAL ADS

Vasquez -- You know, I didn't need that. -- Ghost of Chuckie Fudh

Death -- Hmm, you seem to have no defense.  Not that *I* mind.  But have you
considered dodging, or do you not care?  I don't know how golems feel about those
things. -- Custis Forn

Hicks -- Armor won't help you much in a long fight, at least, not if you aren't a
parry-something style.  Well, it was funny, you know?  There you were winning at
every hand, right up until you had "worn yourself out, staggered and collapsed on the
arena floor, incapable of further combat."  Ha. -- Delia Garth

The Mordant Deserter?  Who cares? -- Arabella Deeds

                                  LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS

ELSPETH HAUN was bested by KHALHUMS DWARF in a 2 minute Title fight.
CUSTIS FORN bested CAPTURED ORC in a 1 minute duel.
VASQUEZ was narrowly defeated by STONES in a 2 minute melee.
DEATH demolished HUDSON in a 1 minute uneven fight.
ARABELLA DEEDS devastated RIPLEY in a 1 minute one-sided contest.
DRAKE overpowered STYX in a crowd pleasing 1 minute gruesome mismatched match.
HICKS savagely defeated DELIA GARTH in a 2 minute brutal struggle.
DONIA GRELL bested EMBEZZLING SCRIBE in a action packed 1 minute novice's competition.

                                    BATTLE REPORT

             MOST POPULAR                        RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS     
|FIGHTING STYLE               FIGHTS        FIGHTING STYLE     W -   L -  K   PERCENT|
|AIMED BLOW                       4         AIMED BLOW        22 -   9 -  5      71  |
|TOTAL PARRY                      3         SLASHING ATTACK   16 -  12 -  0      57  |
|STRIKING ATTACK                  2         LUNGING ATTACK    14 -  11 -  1      56  |
|LUNGING ATTACK                   2         TOTAL PARRY       13 -  11 -  0      54  |
|SLASHING ATTACK                  2         PARRY-LUNGE        1 -   1 -  0      50  |
|PARRY-LUNGE                      0         STRIKING ATTACK    9 -   9 -  2      50  |
|PARRY-STRIKE                     0         BASHING ATTACK     3 -   7 -  0      30  |
|PARRY-RIPOSTE                    0         PARRY-STRIKE       0 -   1 -  0       0  |
|BASHING ATTACK                   0         PARRY-RIPOSTE      0 -   0 -  0       0  |
|WALL OF STEEL                    0         WALL OF STEEL      0 -   2 -  0       0  |

Turn 296 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     PARRY-LUNGE        0 -  0         4  AIMED BLOW     
AIMED BLOW         3 -  1     PARRY-STRIKE       0 -  0         2  SLASHING ATTACK
LUNGING ATTACK     1 -  1     PARRY-RIPOSTE      0 -  0         2  STRIKING ATTACK
SLASHING ATTACK    1 -  1     BASHING ATTACK     0 -  0         2  TOTAL PARRY    
                              TOTAL PARRY        0 -  3         1  LUNGING ATTACK 
                              WALL OF STEEL      0 -  0     

                               TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
SLASHING ATTACK  ELSPETH HAUN 9045           5   2  0   56 MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
LUNGING ATTACK   CUSTIS FORN 9043            5   2  0   53 MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
AIMED BLOW       STONES 9031                 5   4  0   52 IWC (1554)
STRIKING ATTACK  ARABELLA DEEDS 9041         5   2  1   34 MIDDLE WAY 23 (1556)
Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above.

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
The overall popularity leader is HICKS 9037.  The most popular warrior this turn was 
VASQUEZ 9038.  The ten other most popular fighters were ELSPETH HAUN 9045, STONES 
9031, HICKS 9037, DRAKE 9039, DELIA GARTH 9044, DONIA GRELL 9064, CUSTIS FORN 9043, 
DEATH 9035, ARABELLA DEEDS 9041, and STYX 9034.

The least popular fighter this week was RIPLEY 9036.  The other ten least popular 
fighters were HUDSON 9040, STYX 9034, ARABELLA DEEDS 9041, DEATH 9035, CUSTIS FORN 
9043, DONIA GRELL 9064, DELIA GARTH 9044, DRAKE 9039, HICKS 9037, and STONES 9031.

                             A SACRED LORD'S SLASHER

     Well, this article/spotlight is for Seal at 7th Order, so here goes.

ST:  If he's huge (15+), 3 is okay, and use HA.  I prefer 7 for epee.  9 gets scimitar 
and 11 gets broadsword.  Anything above 11 is a WASTE!!!
CN:  Whatever they send you.
SZ:  Any.
WT:  15, 17, or 21.  13 is workable, but I hate slow learners!   21 will probably take 
a lot from other areas, so 17 is best.
WL:  17, 17, 17!!!!  You need endurance, lots of endurance.  Some of my friends use 
15, but I prefer not to.
SP:  9+  They use SP as well as most, but don't add here until after WT/WL/DF.
DF:  15+, 15+, 15+.  Once again, I have high standards.  The reason?  Have you ever 
had a slasher come out w/ "relying on his speed to stay out of trouble"?  That's 
'cause his parry is in the negative.  With a 15 DF your slasher will have a much 
better parry and will probably be about 1-3 trains from a Master parry in advanced.  
Later on, you'll see!

Now, how to run them:

     10        9         7 ------------------------->  10
     10        4         2 ------------------------->  10
      7        9         7 ------------------------->   1
     CH/HE -------------------------------------------- >
     HE ----------------------------------------------- >
Off:  D at first, open later, min 2 +, open
Def:                                                  D/S (preferably Dodge)

     Min two+ is in case of a TP or WoS coming after you.  This setup works, so good 
luck!

Mike Bookout
Bookie, Sacred Lord of the Black Regime
Memphis Mafia (36,100)

P.S.  Anybody want to join the Regime?

                      The Dark Arena:  A Fighter's Perspective

(sung to the hymn:  Battle Hymn of the Republic)

Mine eyes have seen the glory
Of the coming of the dawn
I am walking down the tunnel
After everyone is gone
I step into the torchlight
And I see the blade he's drawn
My mind, it sings this song:

CHORUS
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
Worry, worry, I've come for ya
My mind continues on

The crowd is chanting praises
But all I hear are growls
Mine enemy's upon me
So I strike him and he howls
Parry, parry, slash, and parry
I smell his breath so foul
And death, he sings this song:

(CHORUS)

Now we both are tired
And my strength is fading fast
Oh, let me give that fatal blow
Oh, let me be the last
I swing my sword with all my might
The crowd it stands, aghast
As he dies, I sing my song:

(CHORUS x2)

Scotlan (28, 31, 39, 50, ?)

                               Kill Desire: "Patience."

     Many times I have lost warriors, and the manager claimed the KD was only five.  
As if KD had anything to do with the death of my fighter.  It was really the battle 
axe to the head that killed him.
     I was quite disturbed at the widespread belief that kill desire has something to 
do with killing an opponent.  But they have good reason to believe this: the 
Duelmasters Handbook definition of kill desire has a tendency to cast a "confusion 
spell" on the reader to make them think that way.  The wording is very misleading.  
The name "kill desire" is also misleading.  A more correct word would be "patience."
     Yes, kill desire is actually how much patience your fighter had before taking a 
shot.  KD doesn't add damage or tell your fighter where to aim at.
     Damage is calculated by weapon and strength.  (Of course, favorite weapon also 
affects damage.)
     You let your warrior know where you want him to aim at by filling out the attack 
location boxes on the fight sheets.
     Hit location and damage are the main two things that will kill warriors.  Hit 
locations to vital areas such as head, chest, and the abdomen repeated times increases 
your chance to kill.  The amount of damage inflicted to these vital areas also 
increases your chance to kill an opponent.
     As you see, none of this has anything to do with kill desire.
     Now, I will tell you what kill desire, or patience, as I call it, actually is.
     If you run your warrior with an 8-10 KD, you're telling him to swing like a 
drunken wildman.  You'll see statements in his fights that say "swings wildly" or 
other things to that effect.  He is not waiting for a good opening.  He is swinging at 
everything!  This is bad for several reasons.
     With his KD that high, he is very easily dodged and parried.  Also, he can be 
feinted into bad dueling decisions as well.
     I think that KD between 5-7 for offensive styles and 3-6 for defensive styles is 
perfect.
     You get a lot more hits with a 5-7 KD, and feint a lot less.  But you also get 
more kills in this range.  Reason being, you're waiting for a good shot that is hard 
to dodge or parry.  The example I used earlier about the manager with the 5 KD and 
battleaxe is the point I am trying to make.  If his warrior's KD was 10, my warrior 
could have dodged or parried the attack and still be alive today.  But since it was a 
5 KD, he waited for a good shot that my warrior had trouble defending against, and 
cleaved his head off!  (Well, not literally.)
     Defensive styles run about 3-6 KD.  Defensive styles swing wildly a lot in the 
beginning, but that is natural.  They will get better.  3-4 KD, they still have a 
tendency to let attacks go by.  Of course, if you're scumming, go with a 1 KD. 
     In short, having an 8-10 KD means your warrior is doing all that swinging and 
hitting less.  Not to mention all the endurance he is burning up to no avail.
     Any comments, you can diplo me.

                                        ta-ta,
                                                  Sir Jessie Jest

                                                  DM 11: Lords of the Abyss
                                                  DM 61: Pit Fiends
                                                  DM 67: Storm Wizards
                                                  DM 5:  Bad Girls

                               SOME INFO ON THE RIPPER

     Being that the parry-riposte is my favorite style, I thought I'd share a few 
things I've learned.
     General design:

     ST: 7-11  Strength isn't all important to the P.R.  An 11 will gives you all well 
               suited weapons.  I'll even go as high as 17, but with no dramatic 
               effect.

     CN: Any   A higher con will give a better endurance and make survival easier.

     SZ: Any   Although a smaller size gives you a defensive bonus.

     WT: 15-21 As with all other styles the higher the better.  15 will give the epee.  
               A P.R. needs to learn skills to survive.
     
     WL: 13-21 Will is as important as wit.  It helps endurance and life expectancy.  
               A higher will allows you to pick apart most scum.

     SP: 5-13  13 is a major breakpoint but it's not necessary to go that high.  A 
               combo of 15 wit, 15 deftness and 11 speed will give you an expert in 
               riposte with any luck.

     DF: 13-21 The higher the coordination the easier it is to hit your attack 
               location.  A 15 will give you the epee.

     The perfect P.R. would look something like this: 9-4-5-17-21-11-17 with starting 
skill bases like:
     Ini: 60%
     Rip: 90%
     Att: 75%
     Par: 70%
     Def: 75%
     Dec: 40%
     One of my first PRs looked like this: 15-10-9-15-15-6-14, Thror the Dark.  He was 
extremely unlucky as far as starting skills.  He now looks a little different: 17-11-
9-17-16-7-15 with 90% Init, 145% Rip, 130% Att, 130% Par, 115% Def and 80% Dec.  I 
destroyed him with early stat raises.
     I had a similar design that was luckier, at least until he got X-ed by a slasher 
in a tourney.  He died with a 12-3-1 record.  But enough of that.  You're probably 
wanting to get on with the strategies.
     So getting on with it, I've tried both offensive and defensive strategies.  
Generally defensive has worked better for me.  Something like: 3-6-6 going offensive 
in minute 3 or 4 with a 10-8-6 or a 9-7-6 and then backing off to a 6-4-6 or a 4-5-6.
     As far as tactics go I don't use 'em very often.  If you use any offensive tactic 
use the lunge or nothing.  Defensively use dodge and parry sparingly, if at all, and 
don't use the riposte tactic after you've achieved a master.
     Okay, now on to weapons and armor.  A parry-riposte is somewhat limited when it 
comes to weapons.  The longsword is their best choice against heavier armors.  I once 
tried the halberd (I'll wait until you finish laughing.)  Anyway, Thror the Dark 
savagely slew Spymaster with it.  I only give the PR an off hand weapon with epee, 
shortsword or the longsword.
     I've done varying things with armor, but I've found that lighter armor works 
better, personal favorites being APL, ARM, and ASM.  I read an article about the 
parry-riposte of coom that made me laugh.  It said something about wearing more armor 
than expected of a PR, listing nothing higher than ACM+F.  Imagine what he would have 
thought fighting Thror the Dark in APA+F.
     This is just an opinion brought to you by Necrom, manager of Knightmares (33), 
Pentad Paladins (55), Northlanders (70) and a couple of others.

                                   Crimson Strikers

     Greetings, fellow managers, I, Crimson Strategist, shall share my thoughts with 
you on the striking attack style.
     This style developed in cultures where weapon quality surpassed that of the 
armors, this made landing the first blow vital.  This blow is usually delivered in a 
downward fashion quickly, surely, and with power in a minimal of wasted motion.
     Here's how I rate the stats:
     ST 11-15: Never go below 11, strikers are well suited to ALL the weapons in the 
game and 11 allows the use of the majority of them.  They also need to hurt their foe 
when they hit, thus making this an important consideration for damage rating.
     CN 3-9:  This whole style revolves around finishing your foe quickly, if your foe 
has time to develop a complex formal attack on your striker, then you're not fighting 
him properly.  A properly run striker should never be hit more than four or five 
times, any more than this and the whole concept behind this style gets thrown right 
out the window, therefore I rate con as the least important attribute for this style.
     SZ 9-16:  A size of 9 allows use of all the weapons and it is important in 
determining your damage rating, plus, it also adds to your init and this style thrives 
on init.
     WT 13+:  As with any style, the higher the better.  13 is rock bottom, it allows 
the use of all weapons except the epee and you'll still learn at a decent pace.
     WL 7-13: This style conserves endurance which allows this attribute to go 
considerably less than most styles and still fight effectively for a respectable 
length of time.  I've had strikers with a 13 ST, 3 CN, and 5 WL get poor endurance 
ratings and ones with 11 ST, 6 CN, and 9 WL get normal.  However, if you want some 
long term potential, you'd want to be around 13 or so.
     SP 10+: This is very important for decise and init skills which are the heart of 
this style.  Landing the first blow and finishing the fight quickly is hinged on your 
striker's speed.
     DF 15+:  This is crucial attribute for this style, they NEED to be precise with 
their blows, plus, it also adds to their init.  Get to 17 or 21 if possible.
     Now let's take a look at the style itself.  The striking attack is one of the 
easiest styles to run, yet they have adversity that many styles lack.  As I've said 
before, a striker can use ALL the weapons in the game.  They can fight effectively 
wearing plate armor and no armor, they can use EVERY tactic in the game be it 
offensive or defensive, a striker can fight like a lunger or basher, ripper or 
slasher, etc... provided that you match up their strategy with the appropriate tactic 
and weapon.  They can beat ALL the styles in DM and beyond if you choose their 
strategy correctly for that particular style vs. style matchup.
     Here are some examples of style vs. style matchups for strikers and various 
tactic selections vs. the different styles.
     High decise strikers over slashers and lungers, strikers over total parry and 
wall of steel, rippers over strikers, etc...
     Using the decise tactic vs. lungers, slashers, and aimed blows.  Using the lunge 
tactic vs. rippers and aimed blows, using no tactic and having a moderate offensive 
effort and moderate activity level vs. total parries and wall of steel, etc...
     The possible variations for this style are virtually endless.
     Now let's take a brief look at your striker overview and glean some helpful hints 
on how to fight them.  If you see statements like "relying on speed to stay out of 
danger" or "avoiding rather than trading blows," this is telling you that your AL 
should be moderate to high.  If he does great damage, then don't use weapons like the 
epee or shortsword, this would be an underutilization of his strengths.  If he learns 
attack skills easily, then this is telling you that he likes to take his time and pick 
his shots so don't send him out with a 10 OE!  If you see statements like "has learned 
how to be a decisive and quick fighter," then by all means USE the decise tactic with 
a high OE.  Don't send him out with offhand weapons unless he's ambidextrous, if you 
do, it will take away from his attack.  As you can see, the various statements on your 
overview are very helpful in telling you how your striker likes to fight.
     Here's a very general strategy that has worked well for my strikers.

OE             10   8    7    7    7    6    6       Armor: ARM to ACM
AL              4   3    2    1    1    1    8       Weapons: BS,LO,SC,GS,BA
KD              6   6    6    6    6    6    5
ATT LOC        Head, body, arms
PRO LOC        Head or body
OFF TCT        Decise or bash
DEF TCT        Response or dodge

     Before I close there is one last point I wish to emphasize, USE the 
challenge/avoid system, it will help control who you fight and when.  In closing, I 
would like to thank the following managers for their diplos and articles which helped 
me learn the game: Sir Jessie Jest, Talon, Tex, the managers on the roundtable, and 
numerous others who took their time to put quill and ink on parchment and pass their 
knowledge on to others, thanks!
     Many of you know the Crimson Death stables or soon will know them since I plan to 
have quite a few of them up and running, however, some of them will be on and off due 
to monetary fluctuations so if you wish to diplo me with any comments, criticisms, 
whatever, send them to my home arena, which, from here on out, will always be active.

                                             Later, 
                                                  Crimson Strategist
                                                  Crimson Death DM 61