DUEL 2 NEWSLETTER

Date   : 04/06/2013    Duedate: 04/19/2013

NOBLISH ISLAND ARENA

DM-93    TURN-374

This Weeks Top Honors

THE DUELMASTER IS

DAISY FRYE
LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
(93-9417) [6-4-0,61]

Chartered Recognition Leader   Unchartered Recognition Leader

DAISY FRYE                     PITCHFORK
LOW ROAD 5 (1620)              USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)
(93-9417) [6-4-0,61]           (93-9437) [3-0-1,38]

Popularity Leader              This Weeks Favorite

DAISY FRYE                     MAKESMELOOKBAD
LOW ROAD 5 (1620)              BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
(93-9417) [6-4-0,61]           (93-9446) [1-2-0,12]

THE CURRENT TOP TEAM

USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)

          TEAMS ON THE MOVE            TOP CAREER HONORS
Team Name                  Point Gain  Chartered Team
1. BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)    22
2. LOW ROAD 5 (1620)           10      LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
3. USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)        8      Unchartered Team
4. TRIBES (1621)                3
5. MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)       0      USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)

The Top Teams

Career Win-Loss Record           W   L  K    %  Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns    W  L K
 1/ 1*USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)     12   3  1 80.0   1/ 2*USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)    12  3 1
 2/ 2*TRIBES (1621)              3   1  0 75.0   2/ 1 LOW ROAD 5 (1620)         8  7 0
 3/ 3 LOW ROAD 5 (1620)         26  24  1 52.0   3/ 3*BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)  6  8 0
 4/ 4*BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)   6   8  0 42.9   4/ 4*TRIBES (1621)             2  1 0
 5- 5*MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)     1   4  0 20.0   5- 5*MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)    1  4 0
 6- 6*SANTEE WARRIORS (1622)     0   1  0  0.0   6- 6*SANTEE WARRIORS (1622)    0  1 0
 7- 7*WARRIORS FIVE (174)        0   1  0  0.0   7- 7*WARRIORS FIVE (174)       0  1 0

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

                                    TEAM SPOTLIGHT

               WHAT NOW?  D2: THE DUELING NEWBIE EXPERIENCE.

     D2, the game of Duelmasters is worth trying.  Why, there has even been a
published book written about it!  It must be good!  You want to have the fun and
pleasures that hundreds of other managers before you have experienced?  Can't blame
you!  I have been enjoying Duelmasters-to-D2 for nearly 30 years.  Perhaps this
article will assist or simplify your introduction to this game and speed up your
enjoyment process.  It goes something like this....
     ACQUIRE A D2 ROLL UPS sheet from RSI.  (Reality Simulations Inc., P.O. Box
22400, Tempe AZ 85285-2400, 480-967-7979)  The first sheet/team is free.  Subsequent
teams cost $5.  Later, after your introduction 10 turns in the Noblish Island (DM93)
arena, you can transfer your starting team to another arena, or you may find you even
want to start up a new team/s in other arenas, or both.  Actually, you can start new
teams any time, even while going through your learning process in DM93; but you may
want to "learn the ropes" first.
     FILL OUT THE ROLL UPS and send it to RSI.  Other than the normal personal
information, the most important things to decide are: Team name, Manager name, and 5
individual warrior designs.  Let's discuss each of those briefly.  Team name and
manager name can be anything you like that fits you.  (RSI will edit inappropriate
naming.)  They can be gladiator driven, silly ideas, great plays on words, or
whatever.  The warrior names can be closely tied to the team name, or not.  My very
first team was: Bulldogs, manager Kennelworth, and names like--Tiger Lily, Sir
Smythe, Wild Wayne, and Flash.  Etc.  A team I admire in the game is Azure Clouds,
manager Slugbait, warrior names like--Black Bile, Violent Orange, Blue Note....
     We could spend hours and hours on warrior designs, (Where to place the 14 points
on the fixed 70 points and what style to chose?) and there are many articles
available examining design, so I will offer only a few basic comments:
   Offensive styles are easier to learn for a newbie.  (or anyone, for that matter)
   Gender does not matter at all in the fight process.
   Generally, fast & quick or brawny & strong rule.
   WT and WL are the most important stats.
   There are reasons to design to odd numbers.  (Exclude CN)
   Read newsletters and other RSI info, especially DM93 for design reviews.
     You have received your 5 warrior profiles.  Time to fill out DUEL II STRATEGY
FORMS and send them in to RSI.  "Goodness!" you say, "I wish I had a lot more
information about weapons and strategies and what the warrior profile means, and...."
Here are a list of places and methods for getting additional info:
    "Phone a friend."  Diplo, e mail, call, write, etc.  Beg from other players,
especially experienced players in the game.
     "Put on your newbie outfit."  Ask RSI, or better yet, diplo the teachers/coaches
in Noblish Island (DM93) the "starter's arena" and ask for information provided
there.  If you are already in Noblish Island, ask Jorja or anyone there to make sure
you get the CIC or "fact sheets."
     "Go electronic."  The best information in the game is available at
reality.com/dm, or terrablood.com, or even try chatzy.com/42003746228981 as Dmers
chat there from appx 9AM to 2AM EST.  And they seem to welcome inexperienced
questions.
     So back to the strategy sheets.  One for each warrior you plan to fight.  Write
legibly!  You would be very disappointed to have a code input improperly because your
scribbles were not so discernible.  The basic stuff like warrior name and ID, or game
# and account # don't need discussion.  But weapon selection, strategy, armor, and
challenging do. 
     Weapon choice is your chance to select a best weapon against the opponent's
probable armor.  Bigger weapons are probably needed against heavy armor.  Some
weapons do especially well against certain armor types.  (Hmmm; that information
mentioned earlier would help.)  The most common weapon arrangements are a single
primary weapon and a small backup primary for offensive types, and a primary/
secondary (secondary could be a shield) and zero to two backups for defensives/
finesse warriors.
     Strategy is more difficult to decide.  Offensives usually start "hot and heavy"
and then slow down, as they will wear down/tire due to weight being carried and a
high activity level Defensives tend to run moderately, but current arena defensive
warriors can be found fighting anywhere from "hot and heavy" to very slow.  The
desperation strategy is important, because if your warrior is nearing defeat or
exhaustion, you may want to do something different in a last-ditch effort to pull out
the win.
     Armor is really a matter of preference, but like every other choice in the game,
there are trade-offs.  Heavy armor can slow down and wear down warriors.  Naked or
light armor may be less restricting and faster but offers little protection.  It is
easy to think, "I need lots of armor," but over encumbering a warrior greatly impacts
his fighting ability.
     Training is simple.  The most common training is "skills," but stats can be and
are trained also.  In general the amount of skills learned is based on your WT (the
higher the better), but it is also impacted by the knowledge of the warriors you
fight (and other things).  Stat training is very highly dependent on WL, as the odds
of getting a first stat train of a stat type are 5% times the WL. (e.g. a WL of 15 =
5%x15 or 75% chance.)  There can be a luck roll impact also in almost everything that
occurs in Duel 2.  Attempting to get a 2nd stat raise in a certain stat is halved.
(e.g. a WL of 15 = 5%x15x 0.5 = 37.5%)
     Challenging and avoiding are very strategic components of the game.  There are
quite a few managers who do not challenge or avoid or both.  You can use that to your
best advantage. Challenge warriors (the warrior ID number) and avoid teams (the team ID number).  Several points about challenging/avoiding):
   1. Challenging and avoiding do not work until after you have fought your first
      fight in the arena.
   2. Challenge warriors or styles you think you can beat, or who will teach you
      well, or to attempt to advance in the rankings.
   3. Avoid those teams who have warriors that can probably beat you, or who are
      likely to challenge you.
   4. Remember: challenge warrior ID numbers (not names) and avoid team numbers
   5. Some arenas, usually Andorian, frown on down challenging.  (Usually defined as
      challenging someone with fewer recognition points that oneself.)  Beware of the
      arena environment, history, and politics.
     You have the option to use an alternate "special strategy" either (or both) when
you challenge someone, or when someone challenges you.  You can use this alternate to
prepare a specific strategy for that challenge you just made, or surprising an
opponent who will likely challenge or blood feud you.  To use these alternatives, "x"
the proper box or boxes and fill out the strategy info on the back of the strategy
form.  This alternative strategy will not be used unless the conditions you selected
occur.
     That was easy, wasn't it!?  After sending in your strategy sheets, (in plenty of
time for the due date--or last minute via fax; no internet submittals allowed) the
computer utilizes everyone's' inputs and the fights proceed.  A few days after the
arena run date, the actual fights and arena newsletter will arrive in your mailbox.
Before submitting the new warrior strategies for the next round of fights, there is
much a manager can/should examine and review.  Here are generic things that an old-
time manager evaluates:
   1. Have I collected/recorded all the information I want from the fight so I can
access it quickly?  (Smithy and his Consortium cronies record this for every fight--
opponent's name, stable, arena and ID number, size, handedness, record, style, armor,
and weapons plus my warrior's train results, armor, weapons, swing info (criticals/
swings/extra value hits).  W or L, how many minutes, recognition points, and
political point status--if any.  Also recorded are who, if anyone challenged.  This
is manually recorded on a sheet with my warrior's name, ID, and size, handedness,
plus style.
   2. Did each warrior fight as I expected from the strategy?  Do I need to adjust or
change any strategies?
   3. Did any warrior act over encumbered or tire faster than I thought?  Do I need
to adjust strategies, armor, or weapons?
   4. Did each warrior fight well with the weapon?  (e.g. hit when he swung and had
critical hits--which are strongly stated weapon hit statements compared to the norm)
Do I need to change weapon selections?
   5. Did another warrior out jump me when I did not expect it?  Do I need to adjust
strategies or weapons?
   6. Did the warriors learn what I expected and learn well?  (e.g. earn lots of
skills)  If not, what can I do about it?  (Switch to learning stats/skills?
Challenge a very experienced warrior?)
   7. Do I know anything about the arena warriors that I can challenge?  (Have I and
my friends accumulated style and other information on opponents?)  Should I challenge
or take the luck of the draw?  (Remember--challenge warrior #s.)
   8. Likewise, is there someone within range I just do not want to fight?  (A
warrior that has beaten me?  A warrior with lots more experience than me?  A team
that has my number?  Should I avoid the team with that warrior?  (Remember--avoid
team #s)
   9. Have I written some personal ads or a spotlight to add to the enjoyment of the
arena?
     Then it is time to turn in those strategy sheets again!
     Duel 2 is a game of gladiators, comprised of knowledge, strategy, and a little
luck.  Above all, it is fun.  See you on the sands!

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

                               Design Requirements!

     Another way to look at warrior design is from a requirements perspective.  What
are reasonable requirements for a warrior?

MINIMUM 7 WILL -- I virtually never recommend lower to anyone.  Assur and Consortium
run some oddballs and have graduated warriors with less, but 7 is really the bare
minimum.  It is very difficult to have success without at least 7 will.  The
rulebooks do not tell you that will is one of the most important stats for all
warriors.  Seven is a skill break point and other than the decise skill at 9 will, no
more skills until 15 will.

MINIMUM 7 STR -- Strength is a primary attribute in damage dealing, carrying, and
using weapons.  The options below 7 are very slim.  Until you learn otherwise, always
raise strength to at least 7, preferably 8 or 9.  Seven Strength is also a skill
break point.  There are no more skills to be gained from Strength until you get to
15.

Higher than Little Damage -- Pure Defenses might get away with little damage, no
other warrior type wants to deal with it.

Aimed Blows: Highly recommended 21 deftness (or 17).  ABs get double attack skills
for higher deftness.  It just isn't usually worth making ABs with lower deftness.

Bashers, Slashers, Strikers (and some Aimed Blows/Lungers/Parry Strikers) -- These
are the pure offensives.  There are ways to make oddballs, but most of these want to
win and win fast.  For all of these, 15 wit is a minimum.  The following is a chart
of the other minimums

Style             Damage  Endurance   Strength    Deftness
Basher            Good    Normal      11/13 (*2)  11/7
Slasher           Good    Normal      9/11  (*2)  11/7
Striker           Good    Poor        9           11
Parry Striker     Good    Poor        9           11
Lunger            Good    Normal (*1) 11          7
Aimed Blow        Good    Poor        7/9 (*3)    17

*1 -- Lungers burn endurance very fast.  Normal is 'minimum' for an offensive based
lunger, but good would be much better.
*2 -- Bashers and Slashers can have the lower number with 11 deftness, but need the
higher number for 7 deftness.  (Weapons used: Basher: QS/WH, Slasher SC/BS (or HA
against faster warriors in light armor))
*3 -- Aimed Blows can deal with 7 strength if they also have the 15 wit, using the
EP.  With less than 15 wit, stay with 9 strength for SS and SC.

Parry Defensives: Total Parries, Wall of Steels, Parry Strikes, Parry Ripostes, and
Parry Lungers.  All of these styles can be made into pure defensive parry based
styles.  These types generally want 11 deftness, 17-21 will, high constitution, and
high strength.  If you choose Total Parry, you can definitely skimp in one or more of
these.  Since you'll almost always have high will, you can also easily assume that
you can train each stat twice.  For Will, realize that your skills are at 17 and 21
will.  If you start with 17, training two times doesn't help nearly as much as
starting with 19 will and training to 21.  Assur does not recommend training more
than 3 times in a stat and if you're going for 3rd trains, start with 18+ will.  By
high Strength and Constitution, the desired is 14+ in each.  These types of warriors
can definitely run with lower strength (think absolute minimum of 11 after trains).
Going lower than 14 con is going to make it hard to stay up long enough to take
enough damage.  You'll notice I don't mention wit on this type of warrior.  That is
because it is mostly optional.  The traditional super scum was a 3 wit/3 speed
monster Total Parry.  Since then (and especially because ABs are everywhere), there
are many different types of defensive warriors, with wits ranging even as high as 17.

Hybrids:  Lungers, Parry Ripostes, Wall of Steels, Parry Lungers, Parry Strikes,
Total Parries, and Aimed Blows.  These warriors are the toughest to master and there
are too many ways to create them to give a single set of guidelines.  I'll give the
minimums as I see them, but there are so many exceptions it is impossible to list
them all.

Style           Str Con Wit Wil Dft Dmg   End   Weapons
Lunger          11  11    5 17   7  Norm  Good  SS*, LO
Parry Riposte   11  11   11  7  11  Norm  Poor  LO, SC
Wall of Steel   11  11    7 17   7  Norm  Good  BA, BS, SC
Parry Lunge     11  11   11 17   7  Norm  Good  SC, LO, SS*
Parry Strike    11  11   11  7  11  Norm  Poor  SC, LO, BS, BA
Total Parry      9  11    7  7   7  Norm  Poor  SC, LO, BS, BA
Aimed Blow       7  11    5  7  17  Norm  Poor  EP, SC, SS*, LO

Realize that these 'minimums' will not all work together.  Wit, especially, is an
area of contention, but Assur believes these low end wit can work for each style as a
hybrid.  If you can't get your wit to 17, Assur doesn't mind at all having 11 instead
of 15 (11 is a big skill breakpoint and makes most weapons available)  Seven wit is a
riposte break point (very important to realize on WOSs).  I've listed possible weapon
choices for each, with an '*' by weapons that I consider inferior, but workable.
There are lots of other weapon choices, some of them are even pretty good.  The most
common weapon Assur uses that wasn't listed is SH.

****
Also realize that while these are 'minimums,' you want to design to the strengths of
a warrior.  What can you maximize that would help a warrior win?  Especially look at
attack, parry, decise, and defense when looking to max a skill.  Maxing hit points is
great for defensive type warriors.  Maxing damage is fun, but often hurts a warrior
overall.

When selecting a style, consider what each style learns as primary skills so if you
max parry, consider a warrior that learns parry as well.  You can use style to
overcome a weakness or augment a strength.  But if you're making a fast attack
warrior, do you really want to select a style that doesn't learn decise naturally?
Things to consider...

Style           Learns Naturally
Aimed Blow      Attack, Riposte (Parry)
Bashers         Attack, Decise (Initiative)
Lungers         Initiative, Defense (Riposte)
Parry Lungers   Initiative, Parry
Parry Ripostes  Riposte, Parry (Attack)
Parry Strikers  Parry, Decise
Slashers        Initiative, Attack (Decise)
Strikers        Decise, Attack (Initiative)
Total Parries   Parry, Defense (Riposte)
Wall of Steels  Attack, Parry, Initiative

The reason Parry Lungers and Parry Strikers are consider such difficult warriors is
because of what they learn.  The skills they learn don't work well with each other.

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

                                 Profile of a Style
                                      Slashers

     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
strategy.
     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.
     Battleaxe
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.
     Broadsword
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
     Epee
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
     Greataxe
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
     Hatchet
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
     Longsword
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
     Scimitar
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
     Shortsword
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
                                       Slasher

     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 
alive.

     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:

                       Skills
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 
weaknesses.

     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.

Jorja
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 bloodfeuds, 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
Puerco

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. --
Q.O.W.

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
Puerco

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===---

                                     Duelmasters
                                     -----------
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 719): BARELY LEGAL of IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 721): ELEVENTH of BLUE NOTE (Howlin' Wolf, mgr.)
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 673): ADELITA of ARCANE ROYALTY (Destitute Noble, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 715): SABBATH of CRUCIAL TAUNT (Daikkan, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 717): WELL DON of GARBAGE PAIL KIDS (Kharadmon, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 709): LT MUELLER of 82ND ILLINOIS (Otto X, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 710): SHARK NORMAN of MAN OR BEAST? (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 357): THE INFLUENCER of LORD OF DISCIPLINE (Longshot, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 707): THE CLEAR of ARCANE PHARMACY (Destitute Noble, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 355): THRALL of THE STORM REAVERS (?, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 703): TRUST BUSTER 1 of SEGUE CARTEL (Zalgor Prigg, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 700): FLOUR CHILD of BAD BREAD (The Baker, mgr)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 692): MAYNARD of NERDS (DMobster, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 651): ARCHERS OF LOAF of UNC COLLEGE RADIO (Floyd, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 332): ROSELYN of DARQUE FORCES (Master Darque, mgr.)
 DM  47 NORTH FORK (turn 326): SOUTH SPOON of OTTODROME TW (Otto X, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 313): 4-H of LIFE IMPACTS (Smitty, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 582): GERHART ERVIN of MIDDLE WAY 20 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  60 ARADI (turn 567): HOFFA of BUGS, SLUGS & THUGS (A-Sop, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 549): HAN SOLO of STAR WARS (Sir Jessie Jest, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 544): NORVAN TEN KOGAN of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 262): MRALISSA LOON of MIDDLE WAY 18 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 505): JACK PENDELTON of MEDAL OF HONOR (The Anarchist, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 499): STREGOICA of DARKSTALKER2 (Hombre, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 491): STEAMED MUSCLES of SHEWISH BUFFET (One Armed Bandit)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 608): BILBO BAGGINNI of MIDDLE ITALY (The Dark One, mgr.)

                                      Top Teams
                                      ---------
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 719): SERPENTS HOLD 3 (Khisanth, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 721): TORTURED (Mr. Tort?, mgr.)
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 673): ARCANE ROYALTY (Destitute Noble, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 715): CRUCIAL TAUNT (Daikkan, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 717): GOLDEN GLADIATORS (Midas, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 709): MIDDLE WAY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 710): CUNNING RUNTS (Deep Thought, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 357): LORD OF DISCIPLINE (Longshot, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 707): CARDOW HUNTERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 355): BAD NEWS BEES (Stinger, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 703): DRAGON RIDERS (Daikkan, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 700): BIG LAKE BANDITS (Den, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 692): POSITION IS EMPTY
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 651): TOLBIN'S X-MEN (Tolbin, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 332): DARQUE FORCES (Master Darque, mgr.)
 DM  47 NORTH FORK (turn 326): BASH BROS PARK (Assurnasirbanipal, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 313): LIFE IMAPACTS (Smitty, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 582): MIDDLE WAY 20 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  60 ARADI (turn 567): RED DOG GANG (Spot, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 549): STAR WARS (Sir Jessie Jest, mgr.)
 DM  65 DAL SHANG (turn 544): SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 262): MIDDLE WAY 18 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 505): MEDAL OF HONOR (The Anarchist, mgr.)
 DM  75 JADE MOUNTAIN (turn 499): SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  78 LIN TIRIAN (turn 491): SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 608): DIRT DEVILS et al (The Dark One, mgr.)

                                   Recent Graduates
                                  -----------------
 DM  13 DULLENS (turn 673): ADELITA of ARCANE ROYALTY (Destitute Noble, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 714): LUCK DEVIL of THE DEVIL'S OWN (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 355): POSTAGE of EXPENSE ACCOUNT (Finance Manager, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 703): TRUST BUSTER 1 of SEGUE CARTEL (Zalgor Prigg, mgr.)
                          SIR VEILLANCE of SECRET SQUIRRELS (Gentleben, mgr.)
              (turn 702): FOR THE GODLINGS! Of NOTORIOUS (Destitute Noble, mgr)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 691): MADON AP LLEW of CHILDREN OF LLYR (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  47 NORTH FORK (turn 326): SOUTH SPOON of OTTODROME TW (Otto X, mgr.)
                   (turn 325): TALKEETNA of ALASKAN PIPELINE (Storm Lord, mgr.)
                               SCOMSSS'S NIGHTMARE of THE OPERA (Manager, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 312): MOLDAR NAY of MIDDLE WAY 6 (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  60 ARADI (turn 566): TICK ... TOCK of UNNAMEABLES (Howlin' Wolf, mgr.)
 DM  74 DAYLA KIV (turn 504): MARISAN TEN MEDARIN of SAND DANCERS (Jorja, mgr.)

                                 DUELMASTER'S COLUMN
                             Notes from the arena champ.

     I don't really have anything to crow about, since I've retained this position by
losing to the Khalhums Dwarf.  That's a problem with small arenas:  you rise too
fast, and suddenly there's no one around to fight except the upper ranks of the
standbys, for which you aren't ready.  Ouch!
     This will be the final appearance of the Low Road 5 on Noblish Island.  After
today's fights, we'll be shipped off to cold storage in some closed arena.  There ARE
worse fates, I suppose, such as being shipped of to some busy, tough arena, so... no
complaints.

                                   Abram Cross

                                      SPY REPORT

     It is I, Novgorodny Vir, Spymaster of Spymasters.  Look on my work, ye mighty, 
and despair!  The boys at LOW ROAD 5 left the arena dejected, after being kicked out 
of the top spot by USEFUL WEAPONS.  Good show!  LOW ROAD 5 had cause to celebrate, 
after BENNY DOGGE got 10 points by beating CAPTURED ORC.  A certain someone should 
cut down on the drinking and practice more, after losing 7 points to PITCHFORK.  
(Discrete enough, ELMER GREEN?) Out with the old, in with the new.  Enter VENEMOUS 
CONCUBINE, handily defeating ABRAM CROSS.  With 61 points, DAISY FRYE of LOW ROAD 5 
takes the position of NOBLISH ISLAND's Duelmaster.  So who's the team that's been 
walking into taverns last week and ordering milk?  Sounds like a PR stunt to me.   
     My mother wished me to avoid conflict, and seek the gentle trade of Spyreporter. 
But warriors aren't supposed to avoid fights!  To quell some nasty rumors, the guys 
in BASH BROS BROTHER are not carrying any incurable diseases.  No need to avoid 'em.  
The warriors of BASH BROS BROTHER found their efforts at combat frustrated as USEFUL 
WEAPONS apparently had more important things to do than fight.  Willing to win at any 
cost is HARSH WORDS, who challenged DRUG USER, 13 points junior.  Our sympathies, 
DRUG USER!  I thought HARSH WORDS showed great skill and promise when it overcame 
DRUG USER.  All right, so I slept through it!  Big deal!   
     The moving sword slashes, and having slashed, moves on...  Questions are being 
raised about the disposing of severed body parts in the arena.  A certain tavern in 
NOBLISH ISLAND would I avoid!   
     Do not think spyreporting in NOBLISH ISLAND is the highlight of my life.  Keep 
those sands bloody and the buzzards fat!  NOBLISH ISLAND, I leave you now.  The 
Duelmaster has agreed to foot my bill at The Warty Toad.  'Til next time-- Novgorodny 
Vir  

DUELMASTER                     W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 DAISY FRYE 9417               6   4  0    61       LOW ROAD 5 (1620)

ADEPTS                         W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 ABRAM CROSS 9420              5   5  1    56       LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
 BENNY DOGGE 9419              7   3  0    52       LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
 PITCHFORK 9437                3   0  1    38       USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)

CHALLENGER INITIATES           W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 HARSH WORDS 9436              3   0  0    24       USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 TRASH CAN 9435                3   0  0    21       USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)
 BORROWS MONEY 9444            2   0  0    20       BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
 BLACK SHEEP 9443              2   1  0    19       BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
 CHARLOTTE ELLIS 9418          4   6  0    18       LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
 ELMER GREEN 9416              4   6  0    18       LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
 PIMA 9424                     3   1  0    16       TRIBES (1621)
 MAKESMELOOKBAD 9446           1   2  0    12       BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
 BASEBALL BAT 9433             2   1  0    11       USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)
-MAT TUKHOLT 9438              1   0  0     8       MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)
-KILY 944                      0   1  0     7       WARRIORS FIVE (174)
 POCKET KNIFE 9434             1   2  0     6       USEFUL WEAPONS (1623)
 DRUG USER 9447                1   2  0     5       BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
 EMBARRASSING 9445             0   3  0     3       BASH BROS BROTHER (1625)
-2-B-A-KO! 9430                0   1  0     1       SANTEE WARRIORS (1622)
-LADY DEATH 9442               0   1  0     1       MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)
-ZIDRIT DU'ORDEN 9441          0   1  0     1       MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)
-CAMI DEAORDEN 9439            0   1  0     1       MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)
-YAR'KEN TILLBIN 9440          0   1  0     1       MISFITS OF DOOM (1624)

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

THE DEAD                W  L K TEAM NAME            SLAIN BY              TURN Revenge?

                                     PERSONAL ADS

Misfits Of Doom -- Welcome to Noblish Isle.  I apologize for the rude awakening on
matchups from my Useful Weapons.  Your day will come--surely.  I promise to evaluate
those fights (have not seen them yet as of this writing) and provide you with any
useful/helpful information I can.  Meanwhile, feel free to ask questions.  Jorja,
Assur and I are here to help you learn.  Use us. -- Smithy, Useful Weapons

Jorja -- A salute to your fine outgoing team.  I am doing my best, somewhat
fruitlessly, to keep you from dominating the top five spots.  Kudos. -- Smithy

     Well, get yourself some fruit!  It's good for you.

Assur!  You lucky dog!  You got your wish last turn--no Jorja matchups!  (wink) --
Smithy
P.S.  You should have challenged; or did my avoids work?

Assur -- Coach Rah Rah had enough.  Football is over, although we, too, greatly enjoy
March Madness, The Greatest Spectacle on Earth!  Besides, we like the way Smithy
seems to be managing.  (We like his name, too.) -- The Consortium Elders

All -- Just to try something different, one of my Useful Weapons will be selected to
be sent to The Mailer.  Perhaps he can do Noblish Island proud? -- Smithy

Zidrit -- I normally would say really mean things to you, but you are a newbie and
have lots to learn, so I will only say "good luck in future matches." -- Harsh Words,
Useful Weapons

Charlotte Ellsi -- I was lucky, lucky, lucky. -- Pitchfork, Useful Weapons

All -- What am I doing so high up here in the rankings?!  I could die up here
fighting Jorja's bruisers!  This is not right.  Are you listening, Commission? --
Pitchfork

     No.

Black Sheep -- You don't seem like a Black Sheep.  You don't fight any different than
other Bash Bros Brother fighters.  Bwahahahaha. -- Trash Can, Useful Weapons

Yar'ken -- Some days you get the bear; some days the bear gets you. -- Pocket Knife,
Useful Weapons (repocketing his now folded-up weapon, realizing just how useless--not
useful--it would be against a bear)

Drug User -- Tsk, tsk.  A bat up the side of the head often gives one a bigger jolt
than a shot in the arm. -- Baseball Bat, Useful Weapons

Weapons -- You fought well these first two turns.  What the heck is wrong with you?
-- Smithy (with a sarcastic grin)

     Smithy, please try to get Coach to put the proper arena id number on his
     personals!

Smithy -- As you know, me having the top five warriors last time was a fluke.  Small
arenas throw up a lot of flukes. -- Jorja

Hmm, we go two-two against standbys.  Of course, the ones we lost to are ranked well
above us.  That'll do it most times. -- those who walk the Low Road

Pitchfork -- Darned golem! -- Charlotte Ellis

Misfits of Doom -- A rough start for your team.  I've given my feedback for the
warriors I saw. -- Assur

Lady Death -- She's a size 14 aimed blow with 7-8 strength and 9-10 starting
deftness.  I can tell all this from the messages at the top of the fight.  Aimed
Blows get double attack skills if they start with higher than 11 deftness.  You've
chosen a style that just doesn't work well with low deftness.  The only weapons you
can use well are Fist, Shortsword, and Dagger (though if you get to 9 strength and 11
deftness, you'll have the Scimitar and shortspear also at 9 strength).  On the
surface, I'm not too excited about this warrior.  I'd consider the dark arena and
start over with a better design/warrior.  If you want to stick with it, consider one
of the following two strategies:
  #1 -- Come out fast and swinging (high offensive effort and activity level, with or
        without the decise tactic).
  #2 -- Come out dodging and try to get the counter strike (high activity level, with
        or without dodge tactic, moderate+ offensive effort)

Cami Deaorden -- With the low wit, you're looking at SS as your most likely well
suited weapon.  Feel free to try LS or SC (if you're close to 11 wit).  Your strategy
didn't look that bad from reading the fight.  Cami parried a couple times and tried
to riposte both times.  Parry Ripostes are the most finicky style around.  My
experience is you really have to fine tune their strategies to get them to perform
optimally.  They are a tough style to master.  Being a lower skill style makes it a
bit tougher as well.  Your best matchup is generally going to be strikers.  Usually
lots of those around!  Worst match up will typically be Aimed Blows.  Depending on
how much you can carry, I typically wear more armor on my Parry Ripostes. -- Assur

For all managers:  If you aren't sure what to train, train skills!  All warriors
needs more skills to become better.  Remember that each time you train a stat, it
gets harder to train.  The first time you train, the approximate chance to succeed in
the train is WL*5%.  Each successive train is halved until it reaches a minimum of
around 7.5%.  Example:
11-19-9-8-18-10-9 are my stats.  If I want to raise my Will to 21, the chance to
train is:
WL to 19: 18*5% = 80%.
WL to 20: 19*5%/2 = 42.5%
WL to 21: 20*5%/2/2 = 25%

After that, I may want to raise my Deftness to 11
DF to 10: 21*5% = 105%
DF to 11: 21*5%/2 = 52.5%

Raising Strength to 15 might look good on paper, but it will take a long time
(105%, 52.5%, 26.25%, and 13.125%)
You can learn quite a few skills, even with medium/low wit in that same time!

Pima -- Not who I wanted to face.  Good win! -- Embarrassing

Smithy -- A wonderful start for you.  Too bad for you, the only place to go is down!
-- Assur

All -- I am fighting Pima in this arena with the intention of imporving my strategy
and management skills. -- chief, mgr Tribes

                                  LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS

TRASH CAN bested MAKESMELOOKBAD in a action packed 5 minute amateur's Challenge fight.
HARSH WORDS demolished DRUG USER in a 1 minute one-sided Challenge melee.
ABRAM CROSS was savagely defeated by VENEMOUS CONCUBINE in a 2 minute duel.
DAISY FRYE overpowered AMBITIOUS GUARD in a 1 minute bloody one-sided Title fight.
BENNY DOGGE devastated CAPTURED ORC in a 2 minute bloody one-sided duel.
PITCHFORK overpowered ELMER GREEN in a 1 minute mismatched brawl.
CHARLOTTE ELLIS was luckily beaten by CULT MEMBER in a 1 minute melee.
PIMA viciously subdued EMBARRASSING in a action packed 1 minute gory beginner's duel.
BASEBALL BAT slimly lost to BORROWS MONEY in a 2 minute gory novice's duel.
POCKET KNIFE was beaten by BLACK SHEEP in a popular 2 minute novice's melee.

                                    BATTLE REPORT

             MOST POPULAR                        RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS     
|FIGHTING STYLE               FIGHTS        FIGHTING STYLE     W -   L -  K   PERCENT|
|BASHING ATTACK                   5         SLASHING ATTACK   17 -   6 -  2      74  |
|SLASHING ATTACK                  3         TOTAL PARRY        9 -   5 -  0      64  |
|WALL OF STEEL                    2         STRIKING ATTACK   18 -  14 -  0      56  |
|AIMED BLOW                       2         BASHING ATTACK    26 -  22 -  0      54  |
|LUNGING ATTACK                   2         LUNGING ATTACK     7 -   8 -  0      47  |
|STRIKING ATTACK                  1         WALL OF STEEL     10 -  13 -  1      43  |
|TOTAL PARRY                      1         AIMED BLOW        10 -  15 -  0      40  |
|PARRY-LUNGE                      0         PARRY-STRIKE       0 -   1 -  0       0  |
|PARRY-STRIKE                     0         PARRY-RIPOSTE      0 -   1 -  0       0  |
|PARRY-RIPOSTE                    0         PARRY-LUNGE        0 -   0 -  0       0  |

Turn 374 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:

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

                               TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
SLASHING ATTACK  DAISY FRYE 9417             6   4  0   61 LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
STRIKING ATTACK  BENNY DOGGE 9419            7   3  0   52 LOW ROAD 5 (1620)
Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above.

The overall popularity leader is DAISY FRYE 9417.  The most popular warrior this turn 
was MAKESMELOOKBAD 9446.  The ten other most popular fighters were BLACK SHEEP 9443, 
BENNY DOGGE 9419, BASEBALL BAT 9433, POCKET KNIFE 9434, PITCHFORK 9437, PIMA 9424, 
HARSH WORDS 9436, DAISY FRYE 9417, CHARLOTTE ELLIS 9418, and BORROWS MONEY 9444.

The least popular fighter this week was ELMER GREEN 9416.  The other ten least 
popular fighters were ABRAM CROSS 9420, DRUG USER 9447, TRASH CAN 9435, EMBARRASSING 
9445, BORROWS MONEY 9444, CHARLOTTE ELLIS 9418, DAISY FRYE 9417, HARSH WORDS 9436, 
PIMA 9424, and PITCHFORK 9437.

                  Top Ten Reasons Why Duelmasters is better than Sex

10.  When you spend money on Duelmasters, you know you're going to get return on your
     investment.

 9.  One arena won't get jealous when you start playing in another.

 8.  With the right tourney prize, you can design your own warrior.

 7.  If you make it to AD, they tell you your warrior's favorites.

 6.  You can always DA and get another roll-up.

 5.  The more experience you get, the less likely you are to die.

 4.  SZ, CN and Charisma are less important in Duelmasters.

 3.  Most mangers are satisfied with two minute fights.

 2.  Warriors do as they're told, even if it means using ALE and a WF.

And the number one reason..........

 1.  You don't have to hold your turn for an hour after you're finished reading it.

Composed by the Jester and Predator

                              THE ULTIMATE AIMED BLOW

     Oh no, not another aimed blow, you think, they always lose and have a tendency to 
die if they meet the right person.  But I can promise you that this fighter will give 
you a lot of wins.  Not a 20-0-? record, but a respectable one.  Let's have a look at 
the stats:

THE BEST:      IF YOU CAN FIND IT:      TOO BIG:       TOO FAST:      THE MUTANT:
ST:  9         ST:  9                   ST:  9         ST:  9         ST:  7
CN: 15 +/-     CN: 14                   CN: 14         CN: 15         CN: 15
SZ:  3 - 5     SZ:  3                   SZ:  6 - 9     SZ:  3 - 5     SZ:  3
WT: 19 +/-     WT: 21                   WT: 17 +       WT: 19         WT: 13 - 15
WL: 18 +/-     WL: 19                   WL: 17 +       WL: 18         WL: 13 - 15
SP:  3 - 5     SP:  3                   SP:  3 - 6     SP:  4 - 9     SP: 15 +
DF: 15 +/-     DF: 15                   DF: 15         DF: 13         DF: 15 +

ST: So you can use some weapons.
CN: So you can stand some damage, and get at least good endurance.
SZ: The smaller the better.
WT: You need to be smart, and it helps a lot on stats and skills training.
WL: Helps you stand even more damage.  It also helps a lot on stats and skills 
training.
SP: The slower the better, but needs to be trained to avoid clumsiness.  It doesn't 
matter if this stat is low, you will hit when you want to hit.
DF: Gives you the response to other's actions, and gives you the initiative when you 
need it.

     The main weakness of this little fellow seems to be his speed, but this 
disadvantage is made good by his small size.  He will dodge nearly anything, and what 
hits him doesn't matter because of his constitution.  The strategy is all up to each 
manager, but I prefer to run mine like this:

Weapons:  Epee vs. Light Armor
          Short Spear vs. Medium Armor
          Shortsword vs. Heavy Armor

Shield:  Medium Shield vs. Light and Heavy Armor

Armor:   Depends on who I am challenging

Helm:    Full helm

Strategy           1st  2nd  3rd  4th  5th  6th+ Desp.
Offensive Effort    5    5    5    6    5    4    2
Activity Level      5    6    6    6    5    5    4
Kill Desire         4    4    5    6    6    4    2

Attack Location: Head or Chest

Defend Location: Body or Head

Offensive and Defensive tactics are something I seldom use.

     Challenging is very important when running an aimed blow.  Try to challenge big, 
unarmored fighters.  Train strength, speed, and deftness.
     Well, that's all, for now.  Try it and send me a diplo note if you have any 
comments on my aimed blow.
     Brought to you by Manimal, Manager of Cowards Guild, DM-31.
     May victory by yours (or mine.)

                                  Aimed Blows My Way

     Okay, so it's a pretentious title.  No more so than anyone else's, what with all 
these "the perfect" this and "the perfect" that; what I'm going to show you here is 
several different ways to make aimed blows and win with them.
     There is no one specific way to make an aimed blow.  You'll hear a lot of 
managers claim that they "HAVE" to have a 21 DF in order to be any good at all.  Well, 
that's a trifle exaggerated.  It's NICE to have a 21 DF.  This will increase your 
attack rating, and give you a certain boost.  But it isn't necessary for a good, 
solid, long-term aimed blow.
     I'm going to give several examples of aimed blows, both how-tos and how-not-tos.  
All the aimed blows represented here actually fight on one of my stables, so I did 
this all by hit-and-miss.  Unlike some managers, I don't believe that the first, 
third, and fifth rules of aimed blows is "they die."  It's only the third rule. <grin>

     Now then.  Design:
     ST: Any, really.  You can go low, since aims can handle daggers and open hand 
just fine.
     CN: Again, any.  A little more can help them take a hit, but if they're lucky, 
they'll do all right even if they can't.
     SZ: Any.  This is a versatile style.  Big ones do great.  Little ones do great.
     WT: I'm going to surprise you, here.  Anything.  Yep, anything.  Best is 11-21, 
of course.
     WL: Again.  Any.  Honest!  An aim can do without will and can also use it to its 
best advantage.  But from here on is where you've got to pay attention.
     SP: LOW.  Keep it below 9 if possible.  Below 7 is better.
     DF: HIGH.  21 is always best, but 17 works okay, too.
     So now you have a rollup with a low speed and a high deftness and it doesn't look 
like much else.  You've got a good aimed blow.  Yes!

     Examples of "do" design aims:
     1) 7-5-12-21-11-7-21
     2) 11-16-6-21-9-4-17
     3) 10-15-6-17-9-6-21
     4) 13-9-5-17-17-6-17
     5) 11-5-10-11-21-5-21
     6) 8-10-9-17-15-4-21
     7) 5-10-7-17-17-11-17
     8) 12-12-7-21-9-6-17
     9) 7-11-8-11-21-5-21
    10) 9-14-8-15-17-4-17

     Ten is a good, round number.  1-4 are Immortal.  All have winning records.  Most 
of them beat lungers in one minute.  The low-con ones have the most trouble, because 
they can't take a hit--if they get hit, they go down.  Fortunately, that's only killed 
a few of mine (the dead ones I won't list just now, since it's so depressing).

     Examples of "don't" design aims, unless you're as insane as me or much more 
experienced in your aimed blow running:
     1) 17-5-5-11-17-9-21  (beat the DA three times before he was killed--he gets a 
special place at #1)
     2) 13-8-12-11-11-18-11
     3) 11-12-6-21-13-8-13
     4) 11-12-12-17-11-4-17
     5) 12-7-18-13-13-5-16 (my first)
     6) 11-14-7-9-17-9-17
     7) 9-11-9-17-11-10-17

     There's certainly more "don'ts" than dos, but those are ones I actually have 
played somewhere; 2-5 are immortal, with usually 50% records except for the 11 DF (who 
is in permanent retirement).  He came along early in my aimed blow career, when I was 
making EVERY rollup into an aimed blow to see for myself what worked and what didn't.  
That didn't.  Some of the mortal ones I'm still running, and they do well enough, but 
as I said, until you get a little experience there are some things you may not want to 
try unless, like me, you want to see what happens for yourself. <grin>
     Now for strategy.  This is probably the most important thing you'll give your 
aim.

Weapons: Scimitar, unless they don't have the strength for it, in which case, dual 
daggers.  Longsword is next, then fists, then quarterstaff.  You need an 11 ST for 
longsword, so that's probably not always realistic.  If your aim likes to fight with 
his fists, you can let him, but I'd advise waiting until he's got some experience, and 
you know your opponent isn't much on armor and parrying, because you can do yourself 
some serious damage on the parries.  Quarterstaff is a two-handed weapon, so bear that 
in mind if you use it.

Armor: Keep it light, no more than ARM/H, and then only if you're worried about your 
opponent.  An aimed blow is a fast, offensive warrior--don't load him down.

Strategy:

10        8         8         6         6         6         10
10        2         2         1         1         1         10
 1 --------------------------------------------------------- >
LL --------------------------------------------------------- >
HE --------------------------------------------------------- >
 D

That's a good, all-purpose, general strategy.  Some aims will want to play around with 
it, and you let them--see what they like.  But, and this is VERY important: keep that 
KD low!  An aimed blow relies on his control and his accuracy, and higher KDs will 
cause them to lose a lot of that.  If you're bloodthirsty, change the attack location 
to the head.  I recommend the legs for knockdowns.  Either way, your aim will attack 
THAT LOCATION, over and over again, until he has defeated his opponent, and very 
decisively, from total parries (the classic aimed blow opponent) to lungers (the 
classic aimed blow enemy).  Remember: the aimed blow is an OFFENSIVE style.  He has 
some finesse, but he is a brutal and efficient warrior.  Keep him in control; he'll 
win.  You can also play with desperation, but for me just dropping the first minute 
tactic often works just fine.  As for the use of decise, as always, it's up to the 
manager, but decise will help keep your aim from "standing around looking for an 
opening" in the first minute.  Get him moving.

     As always, experiment, find what works for you, and have fun.

Raf
Lord Protector
Ivory League
Manager of Tex's Rangers (51, 100, 101), Assassins (40, 105), Impressionists (27, 
105), The Damned (30, 105, 101, 102), etc.

                                The Mechanics of Death

                                  By Sir Jessie Jest

     Greetings, joy and happiness to everyone!  This article discusses the mechanics 
involved when a warrior dies in combat.  It will give the reader a better knowledge of 
how a warrior actually gets killed in combat.
     Here is how a warrior dies... The Facts) ...in fact, get out a dead warrior's 
last fight so you can follow me.  To start the process of death, a warrior must first 
fail to make a death roll.  Let's say the death roll is 20 or less out of 100 to fail 
that roll for this example.
     There are 2 ways a warrior can be forced to make that Death Roll.

1. The vitals roll.
2. The second is when you run out of hit points, which is called the "infirmary roll."

     The vitals roll -- every time a warrior gets hit in a vital area you make a 
vitals roll.  Lets say that you fail on a 1-15% out of 100.  If you get hit in the 
head, chest, or abdomen, you will roll the vitals percent.  If you roll 15 or less you 
must make the death roll to determine if the warrior was killed.  Now look at the 
fight with your dead warrior on it...look for the death intent statement, it will say 
something like, "Trying to make this into a death match, or seeks death of his 
opponent, etc. etc." (there are a lot of them) that is telling you that your warrior 
was forced to make a death roll.
     Now comes the scary part: if you fail the death roll your warrior dies.  But the 
program does not kill you immediately because you still have hit points left.  So what 
happens next is that you will get normal attacks and damages that hit your character 
automatically in the vitals until yours hit points run out.  Then it will say your 
warrior is dead.  Remember that it will be normal hits to the vitals, not crits or 
extra damage remarks.  If your warrior dodges, crit attacks , parries,  has extra 
damage remarks or anything else EXCEPT a normal hit to the vitals, the sentence 
following right after the death intent statement comes up, then he made his death roll 
successfully and the fight continues.  You can have many death intent statements come 
up in one fight, depending on the number of times you hit a vital. You won't get one 
every time, only when you fail the vitals roll.  And your warrior will have to roll 
the death roll every time you fail the vitals roll to see if he is killed or not.  
EXAMPLE:

INFERNO leaps to his left!
INFERNO's scimitar lunges with awesome cutting power!
NULN takes an upper body hit!
NULN is badly hurt!
NULN is becoming FRANTIC!!!!
INFERNO's scimitar lunges with awesome cutting power!
NULN is struck on the left rib cage!
What a devastating attack!!
NULN is dangerously stunned!
INFERNO is trying to make this a death match----(Death Intent)
INFERNO slashes an attack with his scimitar---(Normal Attack)
NULN is struck on the side of the HEAD!---(Vital Hit)
INFERNO slashes with his scimitar
NULN is wounded in the upper chest.
INFERNO slashes with his scimitar
NULN is hit in the forehead!
NULN curses the gods in frustration!
NULN falls LIFELESS to the ground!
INFERNO has won the duel!
INFERNO laughs and says, "What a loser!"

     As you see, if you fail the vitals roll, and then fail the death roll, you will 
get normal attacks to the vital areas until all of your warrior's hit points are gone.  
All of your dead warriors that have died from DEATH INTENT statements will have those 
three things... death intent statement, then normal attack, then hits to the vitals 
until all hit points are gone.  Then you will get some sort of, "falls over dead 
statement."  In the past, if you failed the death intent statement roll, the program 
would just skip all the stuff that was in between the death intent statement and the 
falls over dead statement.   It would say something like this:

INFERNO seeks the death of his opponent
NULN falls to the ground lifeless
INFERNO has won the duel.

But they changed it to make death more dramatic.

     The second way your warrior is forced to make a death roll is if your warrior 
runs out of hit points during or after the fight has ended.  This roll is called the 
infirmary roll and can happen in or out of combat, and does not matter where your 
warrior gets hit.  If your warrior has taken many hits, that reduces his hit point 
total below the preset percentage... lets say it 5% of your total hit points... then 
he will make an infirmary roll.  If you fail the infirmary roll, you then make the 
death roll to determine if your warrior has died.  In combat, you will read that you 
died from serious wounds or something to that effect.  After a fight is over, the 
program checks to see if your warrior has fallen below that preset percentage of hit 
points, if you have, you will make an infirmary roll.  If you fail the infirmary roll, 
an infirmary statement will appear at the bottom of your fight letting you know if 
your warrior failed the death roll that comes after that.   Sometimes you can die in 
combat without a death intent statement that comes up during the battle .  This is a 
good example of an infirmary roll failure in combat from low hit points, triggering 
the death roll which actually is the roll that kills your warrior.  In some battles 
you can get hit several times in the vitals, have several death intent statements come 
up, make every roll successfully and still die from lack of hit points (i.e.: fail the 
infirmary roll).
     A simple way to think of this is the 2 ways are :  1. vitals roll, which deals 
with getting hit in the head, chest, or abs and dying when a death intent statement 
comes up.  Or  # 2.  infirmary roll, which deals with dying from lack of hit points, 
and does not use the death intent statement.  I'd say about 90% of all deaths are by 
death intent statement because of a failed vitals roll.  Only a small percentage die 
from the infirmary roll in or out of combat.
     Well, that's it.  These are facts, not theories.  You can check this out with all 
your dead warriors, and you will learn there are NO exceptions.   Those percentages I 
used up there are just made up, I have no way of knowing what they really are.
     Now I have formed theory regarding KD or kill desire.  I do not believe KD has 
anything to do with a warrior dying, but is rather a tool to determine your warrior's 
aggressiveness in combat.   In other words the timing of his blows, his shot 
selection, and other such things.  For example: The higher the KD the wilder he is 
with his shots, and easier to feint, dodge, parry and riposte.  Some styles like Abs 
(Aimed Blows) fight better with a 1 KD because they are very selective with their 
shots.  Most of the other offensive styles function well between 5-7 KD.  Any more 
than that is just a waste of endurance and has a negative effect on your warrior's 
performance in battle, in my opinion.
     Well that's it for now.  If you would like to chat sometime drop me a diplo at 
Jessie's Kids in DM 60 (yes, I've come out of retirement)  ;) May the axe fall in your 
favor!

Cheerio!
Sir Jessie Jest,
Lord of Puns, and Master of Laughter.

                                  Troll-Bred Bashers

     The Bashing attack is not, as many of you may have noticed, one of the dominant 
styles in Duelmasters.  There are two reasons for this; one of which I will cover 
here, the other I will cover in an accompanying article.  I will preface this article 
on Bashing attack design and strategy by saying that I have been playing Duelmasters 
for two years, and I have spent most of this time experimenting with and perfecting 
the Bashing Attack.  In my opinion, a Basher needs to possess a monumentally high 
attack percentage, with decisiveness and initiative not far behind.  What follows is 
designed to achieve the desired results.
     Let's get right down to business.  First, the stats:

                                           PERFECT
ST:  13-17                                   15
CN:   3-5                                     3
SZ:   6-9                                     6
WT:  17-21                                   21
WL:  17-21                                   21
SP:   5-9                                     5
DF:  11-15                                   13

     Here's why:
     Strength is arguably the most important attribute for a basher.  A basher with a 
high strength can virtually be assured of a reasonably high attack.  however, excess 
strength takes away points from other vital areas and, as you will see, this Basher 
will not want for attack.  A 13 strength gives the Basher most of the good Bashing 
weapons.
     Constitution is absolutely unimportant to any offensive styles warrior.  Bashers, 
and for that matter, offensives in general, should be designed to dish out damage, not 
absorb it.  If you are designing a Basher to absorb damage, then you are designing him 
wrong.
     Size is an attribute that this game system does not handle well.  As we all know, 
too large a size means that you do not have enough points to allocate to the other 
attributes.  You would think logically that a Basher would need a large size.  I am 
not talking about logic.  I am talking about winning within the parameters of this 
game system.  I give a minimum size of 6 since this is the smallest size that can 
achieve "great damage with a blow."
     Wit, in my opinion, is the most important attribute for every style.  This is 
strictly my opinion and you do not have to agree with me.  Where Bashers are concerned 
however, a Basher without very high wit is garbage.  High wit will greatly effect a 
Basher's initial attack, decisiveness, and initiative.  My research has led me to the 
conclusion that a Basher's initiative is primarily a function of wit.  high wit also 
ensures that the Basher will train consistently.  Also, a Basher with a high wit can 
expect an initial initiative rating somewhere in the 50-60% range.  Note that speed is 
also a modifier for initiative.
     Will is another attribute that the Basher cannot do without.  Will affects a 
Basher's attack and decisiveness, and is responsible for, in conjunction with 
strength, giving the Basher normal endurance, despite the pitifully low constitution.
     Speed has almost no affect on a basher.  I have seen many high speed Bashers, and 
I can tell with 100% certainty that Bashers do not derive strong benefit from speed.  
Slasher, strikers, and to a lesser extent, Lungers, all derive noticeable benefit from 
speed.  I am not saying that a 5 speed Basher will be equally as fast (initially) as a 
19 speed Basher, but I am saying that a Basher can derive greater benefit by placing 
points in other areas.  This Basher will drive his decisiveness from the high wit/will 
combinations: 21-21-5; 19-19-7;  17-17-9.  These combinations, or something similar, 
will generate an initial decisiveness rating of about 50%.
     Deftness is very important to a Basher.  The strength/wit/will/deftness 
combination is where this Basher will generate the awesome attack percentage and his 
attacking precision.  A Basher with the aforementioned minimums in 
strength/wit/will/deftness can expect to achieve an initial attack rating between 60-
80%.  A 13 deftness will also allow the use of my favorite weapon, the morning star.  
In the hands of a Basher, this is a devastating weapon.
     Now that you know how to design a Basher, here's how they should be run.
     This strategy should be used vs. offensive styled warriors:

          1    2    3    4    5    6    Desp
          10   10   10   10   10   10   10
          10    3    3    3    3    3   10
           7    7    7    7    7    7    7
          HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE
          HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE   HE
           D    B                        D

     The offensive effort is self-explanatory.  If you are not trying to destroy your 
opponent, then you should not be running a Basher.  The activity level requires some 
explanation.  Bashers, as you might expect, perform better with a low activity level.  
This is because the Bashing attack style is a series of overhand, overpowering blows 
which are designed to deliver maximum hitting power.  Running around like a 
decapitated chicken would appear to be counterproductive.  Here is the key.  The 10 
activity level in minute one is designed to help you get the jump on another offensive 
warrior.  If you do get the jump, you will win.  Even if you are hurting the Basher's 
attack percentage, how many offensive warriors do you know of that will be able to 
parry or dodge this Basher's attack?  NONE.  Therefore, the 10 activity level in 
minute one is justified.  The decisiveness tactic in minute one is also there to help 
you get the first shot off.  Assuming you get the jump in minute one and the fight 
somehow manages to make it into minute two, that's where the bash tactic comes in.  
You enter minute two with the initiative, land a bash modified head shot into the poor 
slob in front of you, and down he goes!!!  Minutes 3-6 are basically superfluous as 
not many fights will go that far.  10-3-7 allows the basher to do what he does best.  
The theory behind the desperation configuration is the same as that for minute one.  
Since the bashing attack is a downward motion, attacking the head is logical to say 
the least.  Modify this to the chest if you suspect that you adversary is protecting 
his head.  Defending your head is simply there to ensure that you hold your hands up 
high.  My reasoning is that I am simply trying not to interfere with the Basher's 
attack, as opposed to seriously trying to defend myself.  Against defensive warriors, 
change minute one to 10-3-7 with no tactics: i.e., let the basher do what he does 
best.  I have only lost one fight to a defensive styled warrior with my best basher, 
and that was MY fault.  Minute two can be left the same, or you can drop the bash 
tactic.  I am tempted to leave the desperation minute the same.  If you are desperate, 
it probably means you were just hit.  This design cannot take getting hit.  You need 
to go berserk in order to regain the initiative.
     A high quality Basher should have no trouble with Parry-XYZ's and TPs.  Against 
scum try 7-1-7 with the bash tactic.  You should have no trouble blasting attacks 
through the feeble parries of a scum warrior, and the relatively slow (for a basher) 
tempo will allow you to keep it up for 3-4 minutes, which WILL be more than enough 
time to demolish even the most stubborn APA, F, ME, ME 1-1-1-P Total Parry.  Let me 
also mention that the bash tactic should never be used against PRs.
     Last, but by no means least, is what to wear.  Armor should be APL, ALE, or none 
at all.  DO NOT strap this basher into a suit of plate armor.  The Bashing Attack, 
despite what some other managers say (even those self-proclaimed "highly experienced" 
manager who relentlessly brag about their 600+ winning percentages who only run 
defensives, SCUM, and lungers) is a quick style.  The armor should be correspondingly 
light to allow the basher to get the jump on his opponent.  The same theory applies to 
weapon selection.  Try using the QS, MS, of the WH.  The GA and MA should only be used 
against slower offensives of defensive styled warriors.  Again, the key here is 
quickness.  THIS basher is designed to win his fights, with his tremendous attack 
percentage, not with his tremendous damage bonus.
     This article has been brought to you by.....

Mark Schwartz
280 Middlesex Road                                   aka  Troll King
Matawan,  NJ   07747                                      mgr. Troll Lords
201-583-5150                                              Arena #36  Jhans

                     HOW TO BUILD A BETTER WARRIOR (version Y2k)

     I'm sure that by now everyone has had enough of those "perfect" warrior advice 
articles.  And, while they are useful to a point, it's hard to apply their advice to 
the hordes of non-perfect warriors we get every day.  Hence, this article is for the 
other 99% non-perfect warriors.  The design ideas presented here have been valid over 
the course of my 15 years of experience with this game, with proven success at all 
levels of the game.
     There are several things to think about when designing a warrior.  First is 
fighting style.  Second is longevity.  Third is weapon suitability.  Fourth is 
physical capabilities.  Fifth is trainability.  While I will discuss these separately 
in this article, they must be thought about simultaneously in order to get the maximum 
potential from each and every roll-up.
     Fighting style is the most important decision you'll make about your new warrior.  
Consider all possibilities.  Sometimes you will need to experiment with the numbers, 
play around with several different combinations, before picking the best style.  The 
offensive styles are lunging, slashing, striking, aimed blow, and bashing.  The 
defensive styles are total parry, parry riposte, and parry strike.  The mixed styles 
are wall of steel and parry-lunge.  The offensive warriors have lots of attack ability 
and little defense (except lungers).  Their key attributes are usually will (for 
endurance and attack skills) and strength (for damage capability and attack skills).  
High wit and deftness are also high on the list as they both give a lot of skills, 
particularly attack skills.  [Tip #1: Never design an aimed blow with less than a 21 
deftness.]  The defensives have lots of defensive ability (particularly parry) but 
poor attack.  Their key attributes are usually will (for damage taking and parry 
skills) and constitution (for damage taking).  Again, extra wit and deftness is highly 
desirable for the extra skills.  [Tip #2: Keep wit as low as possible on scum 
warriors.]  The mixed styles have pretty good attack and pretty good defense, making 
them among the most formidable warriors in the game.  Their key attributes are will 
(what a surprise!) and whatever gets them to good cut-offs, because mixed styles use 
defensive and offensive skills with equal effectiveness.  If you notice, speed doesn't 
come up as an important stat for any style, but it is probably best utilized by the 
offensive styles.  I tend to like warriors that will perform well (as opposed to 
looking good but still losing), so I tend to design a lot of offensive and mixed 
styles.
     Longevity is another design concern.  The main decision here is whether your new 
warrior will have a long, Gateway oriented career, or have a shorter life span.  If 
shorter, how much shorter?  In general, for maximum learning and maximum training, 
you'll want to add as much as possible to wit and will.  If you envision Gateway god-
hood in your warrior's future, then designing him with a low wit or will has only a 
minor effect; it merely takes a little longer for him to reach his full potential.  If 
your warrior has a sandbagging champions future, then you'll want to add as much wit 
as possible to get him competitive as soon as possible.  For an ADM title shot, you'll 
want to build in some easy stat trains that give lots of skills.  For a short, rookies 
or novices oriented career, you'll probably want a high will because you'll most 
likely be looking for quick, significant stat trains.  The point is, decide when the 
warrior is born how long his career will be, and you will be better able to maximize 
his potential towards that ultimate target.
     Weapon suitability must also be considered.  As is well known, not all weapons 
are well-suited to all styles, and every warrior has a favorite weapon.  It is 
important to design a warrior so he will be able to use the significant weapons well-
suited to his style.  It should not take more than a couple stat trains to get your 
warrior well-suited to some good weapons.  (Consult available charts for weapon 
suitability.)  I feel that it is important to be well suited to several weapons of 
your style.  This gives you the opportunity to change and surprise your foes.  If your 
warrior lacks the attributes to use key weapons of his style, his effectiveness will 
be diminished.
     Physical capabilities is an often overlooked aspect of warrior design.  The three 
main areas of concern are endurance, the ability to inflict damage, and the ability to 
take damage.  At least one of these should be at the "good" level or above, and the 
more the better.  There is usually a trade-off between designing for skills and 
designing for physical attributes.  The trick is to maximize both.  Always evaluate 
the possibility of adding to strength over deftness.  The damage capability gained 
will usually out-weigh the difference in skills.  Endurance is usually a key factor in 
an offensive warrior's ability to defeat a defensive.  Conversely, the ability to take 
damage is usually a key factor in a defensive warrior's ability to defeat an 
offensive.  Again, use the available charts to design your warrior to reach the 
desired physical levels with a minimum of stat trains.
     The fastest way for a new warrior to improve is to learn skills with a 21 wit.  
With a 21 wit, you can usually average three skills per fight for your first 20 fights 
or so.  Going into an adepts tournament with 60+ skills is very good.  The higher the 
wit, the more skills your warrior will learn, so keep this in mind when designing your 
potential tournament champions.
     A number of managers advocate early stat trains that burn skills.  I only do this 
in the most severe of cases, like a 3 wit scummy warrior.  The main reason I don't do 
this is because any warrior I want to fight beyond novices is going to need as many 
skills as he can get.  In addition, if a warrior burns skills early, he'll end up with 
less than his contemporaries at the time they both max skills.  This leads to 
diminished skill levels when the warrior makes a TC run in the Freshmen, ADM, or 
Eligibles class, and to a protracted struggle to get the warrior inducted to 
Primus/Gateway when the time comes. It also eliminates the option to sandbag in the 
champions since your burned warrior will never have the skills to compete with non-
burned warriors.  
     However, I do design for trainability.  I like my warriors to have a shot at a TC 
in the ADM or Eligibles class, so I will purposely leave deftness at 9, counting on 
the quick, easy trains once all my skills are learned.  You can do the same in wit, 
will, speed, and even strength; leave the starting stat a couple points below a level 
with significant skills, then train those stats when you make your TC run.  Of course, 
since you're planning on making this training run in Advanced Duelmasters, the best 
stat for trainability is a 21.  Every train past 21 will give you quick, significant, 
valuable skills.
     Of course, any set of design rules or guidelines will have its exceptions.  There 
are many good warriors out there who did not follow any of the rules outlined above, 
but there are many, many more dead ones.  So, if you follow these rules most of the 
time, most of your warriors will be winners.
     That said, let's do a couple examples.  First, we'll redesign the legendary Broke 
Stroker.

                                   ST  10 + 0 = 10
                                   CN  10 + 0 = 10
                                   SZ           10
                                   WT   9 + 6 = 15
                                   WL   9 + 6 = 15
                                   SP  11 + 0 = 11
                                   DF  11 + 2 = 13
                                   Style: Lunger

Comments:  His wit and will are high enough to make him a viable long-term warrior.  
He starts well-suited to the short spear, and is only one strength train away from 
longsword suitability.  He's got enough con to take a hit, and he'll likely also get 
good damage with his first strength train, if not on the original overview.

                                   ST   5 + 4 =  9
                                   CN   8 + 0 =  8
                                   SZ           14
                                   WT   8 + 5 = 13
                                   WL  13 + 4 = 17
                                   SP  10 + 0 = 10
                                   DF  12 + 1 = 13
                                   Style: Slasher

Comments:  He starts well-suited to scimitar, and has enough ST, CN, & WL to get 
normal endurance.  He has a good shot at good damage to start with, and if not, it's 
only a train or two away.

                                   ST  12 + 5 = 17
                                   CN   8 + 1 =  9
                                   SZ            7
                                   WT  11 + 6 = 17
                                   WL   8 + 1 =  9
                                   SP  14 + 0 = 14
                                   DF  10 + 1 = 11
                                   Style: Striker

Comments:  This low will wonder needs help to get normal endurance, thus the high 
strength.  It gives the additional bonus of guaranteeing good damage on a relatively 
small warrior.  The 11 deftness gives him suitability to almost every weapon.
     Now it's time for you to go forth and design your own godlings (or is that 
"doglings"?).  Armed with these guidelines, you too can have your share of Broke 
Strokers in Advanced Duelmasters.  Good luck, and may the gods guide your blows 
straight and true! 

                            -- Neon Necromancer  
                               (DM 1: Care Less Bears; DM 18: Mad Scientists; 
                               other random teams and 100ish ADM warriors)