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Volume 1, Issue 9 - Turn 357

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Volume 1, Issue 9 - Turn 357

Post  lord_dragon on Fri Jun 03, 2011 4:33 pm

Hello and welcome to the Turn 357 Edition of the Gazette!

It was the dawn of the 3rd Age of Slaughter, five years after the inception of Keeper's Pit. The Arena Project was a dream given form. Its goal: to prevent another war by creating a place where Humans and demi-humans could work out their differences violently. It's a port-of-call, morgue away from morgue, for gladiators, managers, referees and monsters. Humans and demihumans surrounded by a mass of thousands of cheering spectators...all alone on the sands. It can be a dangerous place...but its our last, best hope...for entertainment. This is the story of the last of the Blood Pit Arenas. The year is unknown. The name of the place...is Veteran's Blade.

Welcome to the ninth edition of the Pit Gazette. As with last turn, we welcome back our usual suspects on the staff: Ancient manager Dux Mortalitas, contributing part 2 of a 3 part series, our Senior Alliance Analyst Raul Anjinarikar Siv covering the Undefeated Warrior contest and our Senior Blood Challenge Expert Cliff Banana bringing you the BC Roundup.

Now, on to the issue.


FEATURED ARTICLE - THE 150+ OF YESTERYEAR (Part II of a short series of articles submitted by Dux Mortalitas and edited by The Gazetteer)
Following on from last week's piece by Dux Mortalitas which examined The Demon's expired Dwarf Bastion and his performance in the context of today's 150+, Part II of our series looks at the supposition advanced by Poeg that today's super-veteran warriors would stack up as well or better next to those of days past. In Part III next week we will finally look at what makes a Legend.

Today I will summarize the arguments being made in this debate regarding the comparative quality of the 150+ today and yesterday. We must do this before pruning the tree to get closer to the essence of what it means to be a Legend

One position argues that the 150+ ranks of 150 turns ago was more competitive and filled with more capable warriors top-to-bottom than today. A warrior that would be considered a Legend from that time had thus proven himself against the highest caliber of warrior this arena has ever seen. One major reason for this was the illicit resurrection of great potential warriors repeatedly by certain managers and of course special race advantages that are no longer an issue.

The current arena is simply not as blessed with the same level of competition at the top. To apply this argument to last turn's examination of Bastion, for example, it showed through that he did not get a chance to prove himself against a group of sufficiently talented opponents to warrant the title of Legend. Taking away stiffer competition and then considering he only began winning in the last 50 turns of his life (and left with an solid, but uninspiring record), one wonders how any manager could consider Bastion a Legend.

The opposing point of view seems to be that the 150+ of 150 turns ago, being relative to that time, would be matched closely if one were to place the current crop of veterans, including Bastion, within that context. The thought follows that, giving today's warriors the same advantages endemic to those days (i.e. un-permable humans), they would be better than those that were around back then. The deeper reasoning for this belief is the idea that many managers didn’t know what they were doing in the olden days, so today's warriors would run circles around them.

One part of this greater belief is that many if not all Ancient managers of yesteryear simply took advantage of the relative power of a single strategy (as well as the aforementioned resurrection opportunities), thus not having to stretch their managerial muscles to do well. The argument goes, therefore, that they could not adapt to the present. I fail to see how this hand-waving, however, results in today's warriors being better than yesterday's or how today's warriors would thrive against the Legends of the past, since they have the inherent disadvantage of not automatically being best-of-breed. This point of view, while serving to glorify the current managerial crop, does nothing to oppose my point of view on relative warrior worth.

Regardless, the precept that my fellow successful Ancients were bad managers is a very dismissive line of thought. I can only think of one manager that decided to take a break because of some lack of ability to initially adapt. However, while Overlord left to clear himself of the old patterns he deserves our respect for coming back and sticking it out – let’s not forget that. We can only wait and see if his warriors move up and acquit themselves in the 150+ to come.

Otherwise, who else quit? Master and Jamik come to mind, but they were never all that successful in our current Veteran's Blade, so surely they can't be lumped into the same pile as Overlord. Gern also quit, but considering he was running some of the best warriors our arena has ever seen at the time of his retirement, he left while still at the top of his game and did not seem to be struggling.

So now that we gotten the essential arguments laid out, let’s step into our way-back machine to see what the 150+ of 150 turns looked like compared to those of today. (Note: there were several warriors back then and today, turn 357, that were/are within a fight or three or 150, but I have to draw a line somewhere…Sorry if anyone’s fighters didn’t quite make the cut.)

The 150+ of 150 Turns Ago (There were 9)
LORD DARIUS (30) (148-46-14) - Human
VICIOUSNESS (18) (124-62-7) - Elf
GEAR HEAD (73) (126-48-12) -Human
MORDIN IRONBEARD JR. (27) (117-56-9) - Dwarf
JORAC THE BLIND (120-52-7) - Elf
SGT. SCHULTZ (5) (167-49-10) - Dwarf
SULU (6) (136-79-11) - Half-Elf
JERKULES 5 (5) (118-53-12) - Half-Elf*
BONES (5) (129-50-6) - Halfling*

*Though Nads didn’t fight on turn 207, his warriors listed here were above the 150 Fight mark at the time and their records are captured from their next active turn. Note that the race of these warriors is also somewhat difficult to reconstruct from records left of that time.

You'll notice there is a pretty even racial spread here, aside from the absence of Half-Orcs, and no one race is dominant. I should note that I believe Half-Orcs were a perfectly viable race even back then, though often undone by being pigeon-holed into the "killer stereotype" that has only really been mooted in the recent past.

Regarding the quality of these warriors: Viciousness, one of my best all-time warriors, whose setup I know would dominate the current pit, fought them all (most many times) and of those on this list, I feel only two were sub-par (Bones and Jerkules 5). Those two spent most of their lives in team fights in the upper levels for that reason, I suspect. The rest were all consistently brutal in their singles fights and are Legends in my book. Mediocre warriors simply couldn’t survive against these devastating Masters of the Veteran's Blade.

Now let’s take a peek at the current situation.

150+ of Turn 356 (There are 14)
LORD DARIUS 235 74 14 - Human
DEADLY WENCH 165 99 7 - Human
LUKA SKYRUNNER 149 126 5 - Human
GIDEON 136 72 5 - Human
HSAB 109 66 3 - Human
NEGATIVE EVIL 102 73 2 - Dwarf
M. NOIRCEUR 96 88 3 - Human
GERYON 95 78 4 - Human
MISERY 107 44 4 - Half-Orc
SLAP HO 103 48 7 - Half-Orc
SPOO 84 90 2 - Human
POPPER 89 62 5 - Halfling
SCROTUM 77 82 3 - Dwarf
LEONORD DEQUIRM 71 85 1 - Elf

Just a quick glance and I can see several obvious patterns that are somewhat disconcerting.

First, take a look at the top five warriors and notice that they are all human. Even more disturbing, 8 of the 14 warriors above 150 fights are Homo Sapien. Certainly all of these warriors have benefited from their humanity in terms of perm resistance, which was a benefit particular to their race alone. Its interesting that this is the very charge leveled against the 150+ of days past is it not?

Another interesting trend to note is that the top four warriors have large ranking gaps between them. Lord Darius, for example, has been fighting peasant scum since Ratyr became a Monster. Since Stuge and Koriel died, Deadly Wench and Luka have had no one else to fight but each other and only in the last two turns has Gideon been able to reach even Luka (though he remains out of range of Deadly Wench). These four warriors are more or less playing a different game than anyone else.

The third item, and very obvious, is the sheer number of mediocre to losing records in this group - about 1/3rd. 150 turns ago there wasn’t a single losing record warrior in the 150+. Even when we take a look at the winning warriors we can see that only about 1/3rd of them have what I would consider to be noteworthy records.

Lastly, and most importantly to me, I have fought all of these warriors multiple times and I would only consider about 1/3rd of them worthy of mention in the tapestry that is our great game. More, only 1/5th of them would make it onto my Master Warrior chart. Of all of these warriors, I think there is only one current Legend with maybe two or three more in the making. And of course, the current Legend was part of the same group 150 turns ago.

So what’s really happening here? I decided to go back about 100 turns and take a look at things. The first thing I noticed was that there had been several very obvious changes that came about over the last several years that may account for what I consider to be a dramatic drop in quality of 150+ warriors. First, in the beginning of 2004 there was a change in the ranking system that caused a lot of new match-up possibilities by putting greater value on performance and a little less value on number of fights. This new ranking proved to be a real challenge to a lot of people and death rates rose for young and old. Secondly, Gern retired taking with him a whole flock of great warriors, while Nads retired and or monstered all of his top ranked guys in order to start fresh. Oh and don’t let me forget Red Death and Hero, who both also left rather suddenly with a bunch of high-level warriors between them. This created a sudden vacuum of talent. Thirdly, the unexpected encumbrance tweak by Keeper had a rather nasty effect on a fair number of warriors, ending their lives prematurely. Lastly, MJ monstered off all of his top guys - three of which were Legends in my book. What we have left after all of these dynamic and sudden changes is the mediocrity that we see floating around the current 150+. The current warriors for the most part have grown without the great competition that once graced our arena, and to call our current lot a better bunch or even comparable to their predecessors is, in my opinion, inaccurate.

In summary, when you take into account all the factors, the 150+ of the past were better warriors in general than the current crop. I think resurrection had a lot to do with the quality of those warriors of old, but I also think that Competition Committee's tweaks together with the sudden disappearance of key manager, have left the current arena rather flat.

That said, I don’t mean to say that in the future we won’t surpass those warriors of the past. Honestly, after looking into the issue deeply, I feel that we will. There are a few stars between 100-130 fights right now who are really showing promise, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t turn out to be some of the best warriors to ever live!

Now were does Bastion stand in all of this? Clearly not with the Legends.

He was, however, solid and well-managed in the end.


FEATURED ARTICLE - UNDEFEATED WARRIOR ALLIANCE ANALYSIS
Oh hello! Pardon me my friends while I dictate to you from atop my carriage, it is I, Raul Anjinaricar Siv and my humble Bedouin scribe Hamul, circling the Veteran’s Blade arena in a show of infinite patience for the riding skills of your fair populace. We once again transport you to the befuddled plains of intrigue that make up the Alliance landscape. And what better way than to focus on Undefeated Warrior VI, no?

It is with great pleasure that I report to you that the leaders are, once again, the Legion of Darkness, who still field a dominating 27 warriors after four full turns of mayhem. They now command a full ten warrior lead on the next best contender, and feature two managers with 5 warriors left a piece, the few-lettered Poeg and the mysterious but well-described Palor. Lord Dragon, on the other hand, seems to be fully distracted by a side war with Hoffa from GAPPDA. Could a wider war be around the corner? No one is knowing, but I am betting the GAPPDA will not last in UW as long as LoD will. Actually, it is the Padishah who is betting, but who is counting? Not I, for certain.

And of course that brings us to our most pathetic runner ups, the GAPPDA alliance, who received crushing loss upon crushing loss this turn in randoms, with not one manger among them losing less than half their stable in the fray. GAPPDA holds only 17 warriors, most of young, contending for the title. I would send you my condolences, but I am laughing at you, not with you. Perhaps next time you should recruit 3 more members and buy an extra horse for Hoffa?

A look to our smaller alliances finds an impressive showing by DIE, only losing 2 warriors and holding solidly at eight remaining contestants. I must say I admire your determination in the face of ultimate futility. An epic poem will surely be written of your exploits, most likely by a eunuch. The NBS suffered more losses in comparison, holding now only to 9 contestants, while their curious little gnome tried to ignite a side war with GAPPDA through some ill-thought challenges. And lastly FoF lost a member from the contest, the multi-pronged Lady Sarafin, who joins Valcor Aurthor and Mygdar le Gnome among the alliance-bound in the consolation prize room. FoF now has only 3 warriors left in the contest among 2 managers. Could they be the first to exit the conflict entirely?

And now we turn to the hideously malformed unaligned managers of this squalid hole of a city. It discourages me that there are no less than 9 unaligned managers contending for the top spot after four weeks. This is in many ways a threat to the continued existence of my neckline. As a group, these managers retain a total of 31 warriors in the contest, outstripping the ranks of any alliance. This is a varied group as well, being made of names well known (Caesar Invictus, Dux Mortalitas, Nemesis, Commandante Eyecandy), unknown (T-mote, cam, Ill-ox), and those who have little business in Singles fighting (The spoiler, silencer).

Now perhaps if I may turn to a more serious note with regards to the one known as Valcor Author of the Legion of Darkness. It has come to the attention of this humble and sometimes mistaken reporter that the simple act of submitting a ‘run again’ order to the Competition Committee was too much of a burden for this Mister Aurthor to deal with. What, may I ask, where you thinking? Perhaps that fairies would magically assume your responsiblities that you so negligently discarded. In two words, what gives? Do you think the Padishah has not threatened to pour hot oil over my flesh until I scream his name twenty thousand times should your alliance fail? What part of ‘I have seven warriors left and am tied for 3rd place in the most important contest in the entire known world’ did you misunderstand? Perhaps, and I may be going out on a limb here, the part WHERE YOU SHOULD RUN YOUR WARRIORS.

Now that I have that stress out of my system, I must go shower the vileness of mal feeling from my person and burn these clothes. Salaam and good hunting.


THIS TURN'S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
Turn 357 welcomed a strong class of fighters to the 100 Fight club, with three different warriors hitting their first big longevity milestone, two of them with wins. Ilneval began what will likely be a string of upcoming 100th Fight days for his stable by sending Elf Saraya (a solid 58-42-2) across the finish line with a challenge and win against Solincar Nelflan's slightly younger Human, Red Wing. Elsewhere in random fights, Sanguine Savior's Dwarf Whoop DDamn Doo (an excellent 66-34-5) also served up a win on his 100th Fight Day in a matchup with Izzbot's Chutzpah, who celebrated his own 100th Fight Day during the first week of the Gazette's operation. The only new member of the 100 Fight Club to lose on this special occasion was Stalker's Human Rommell (still sporting a solid 55-45-3 record), who matched up with and lost to much younger Smurfette of Damion's stable. Congratulations to all three managers and warriors on ending their 100th Fight Day alive and kicking and ready for more.


NEXT TURN'S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
Things slow down a bit next turn, but a very special warrior does hit his 100th Fight Day guaranteed to bring an exceptional 70%+ win-rate into the next level of competition. The Gazette sends a hearty "good luck" to an exceptional Dwarf, Ilneval's Mantronic (71-28-3) for turn 358.


NOTABLE DEATHS
It was another deadly Undefeated Warrior turn all around in our fair Veteran's Blade arena, but with one key distinction in the 50+ from recent turns. Whereas challenge kills and deaths have been relatively few of late, Turn 357 saw four of the eleven total 50+ dead arise out of challenges fights (half of their own making).

As in all but two of the turns in which The Pit Gazette has been in operation, Turn 357 included the last gasp of a member of the 100 Fight club. This turn that final breath belonged to The Warlord's Cold Beer, slaughtered in a thrilling back and forth fight by Hosehead's Sore Rod (interestingly enough, also his first kill ever in 128 fights).

Cold Beer was controversial in recent times for repeatedly challenging Sanguine Savior's Thingmaker. He also had only won one Singles fight since sending a huge Blood Challenge down on Mygdar le Gnome's 24-Fight Moffamides "Le Vil" in turn 348 (his other two wins coming against Sanguine Savior's late Lumpy Dooschchunk the turn before the BC and in a random match against Poeg's Sand Boa in turn 350). Cold Beer finishes his run in the arena 3 fights short of the 150 Fight milestone with a record of 61-86-3.

Hosehead and Sanguine Savior celebrated the death of Cold Beer at Dux's Tavern after the fight. Sanguine was heard to boast, "[Cold Beer] was dead long before Hosehead got hold of him. Poor guy having to take orders from Warturd, I'm sure he thanked Sore Rod with his last breath." while Hosehead was a bit more subdued in commenting, "Funnily enough I had been trying to kill Cold Beer for a long time, mostly due to a nasty down-challenge BC kill against one of my guys a long time ago. I'd told my buddy Sang that I would kill CB for both of us awhile back because of CB doing the same thing to him. Sadly, Warlord disappeared for awhile and when he came back [Cold Beer] was out of range of any of my killers. But with a random match out of the blue, I kept my promise to myself and to Sang."

Sanguine Savior was otherwise in a bad mood due to the loss of his stellar Half-Orc, Hot Carl, in a hugely mis-matched random fight against Palor's own nasty Half-Orc Kartoth. Hot Carl ends his life 2 fights short of the 100 Fight milestone with an outstanding record of 69-29-3.

Sanguine Savior spoke briefly with a Gazette reporter after the fight, commenting bitterly, "First off, hats off to Kartoth. Just goes to show that it is possible to win a random match-up when you have 33% more fights than your opponent. Even at the 100 fight level this just proves that there is no corruption in the current system." He paused and then blurted out, "Thingy has expressed interest in combating Kartoth, but I believe allowing him to live is the best punishment. I mean, look at him!"

Palor also stopped to discuss the kill, adding, "Hot Carl should have never been matched against Kartoth. That fight was a death sentence before it even began and even the skulls littering the sands knew it. It was a grave mismatch, indeed, rendering Carl a lifeless, ruined warrior."

In the first of the four challenge deaths of the turn, The Derelict's scum-raised Half-Orc Boxcar Willie met his demise at the hands of Nads' aptly-named Dwarf, Short Temper. It appears that coming out of team fights was an all-around unpleasant experience for Boxcar Willie, as his record nose-dived after beginning to fight in singles after Turn 315. From 50-8-1, Willie went 8-17 in singles matches over the remainder of his life (though with one kill). Tough luck, indeed. Boxcar Willie's career ends at 58-23-2.

Continuing Chen Man Ching's recent string of difficult losses, the extremely talented (and frightening) Human Romilda was exterminated this turn in a random match with equally nasty Half-Elf Ocultto, managed by The Demon.

Acheron, who was present at Romilda's fight, was complimentary of Romilda on her death. "I think most know that Chen and her warriors have been a major thorn in the side of my stable, though not through any intentional action of her own. Romilda is one of the few warriors in the arena that can claim multiple wins against my best Dwarf, Robin Williams We won't miss her, but we do lament her passing."

Romilda's career is cut short at an outstanding 59-15-5.

Acheron certainly suffered his own loss this turn in the death (on his own challenge) of his veteran Half-Orc Thag upon the Long Spear belinging to Scotty Body's Ozzy.

"What can I really say?" Acheron sighed at the end of the fight. "I will miss Thag and his simple eloquence. He could say more with the graceful swipe of a War Flail or a subtle fart than a poet might commit to parchment in an entire lifetime."

Thag's career was mercifully shortened at 47-32-1.

In one of two targeted slayings this turn (as well as hot Human on Human action) Egor sent murderous challenger Mantis to slaughter Master Misfit's solid Paranoid Peace. This was certainly not their first meeting however.

Master Misfit recalled for the Gazette, "Paranoid Peace was in fact paranoid about facing Mantis, after getting clobbered in the Blood Challenges that he didn't manage to avoid. On this, Mantis's 4th unexpected Challenge, things were going different. [Paranoid] was actually winning. He took Mantis to heavy damage and then laid another powerful shot just in time for 3 big hits that ultimately turned his organs to jelly. Previously, he'd had only one permanent injury."

"Mantis is nasty," allowed one veteran manager after the fight was over. "He's not great, but he's going to hit you hard and have a good shot at killing you when he does win. Obviously, I mean look at his record."

Paranoid Peace ceases to exist with a record of 38-29-3.

In other action, Commandant Eitch's depressed Elf Slim Jim met his untimely demise at the hands of Solincar Nelflan's sub-.500 Dwarf Thulzuk in a fairly short fight.

Reached after the fight, Commandant Eitch noted bitterly, "Slim has been waiting his turn to die for some time now. I am unable to avenge his death personally and I had hoped to use the mighty magic amulet granted to Slim by Lord Dragon for services rendered [Editor's note: the amulet was granted for slaying previous stable owner D&D in Singles combat] in his prime. It seems that the Dragon's amulet is ineffective against members of the Legion of Darkness so I will have to seek my revenge some time in the future. Solincar will pay... eventually."

Slim Jim leaves behind a lovely net, a bouncing baby broadsword and a 34-28-2 record.

Finally, four other lesser veterans wound up careers in Turn 357 without much comment. The Gazette congratulates Hoffa's Winyah, The Spoiler's Flood, D-Man's Mark Warner and Drakus' Byron for eliminating Pan's Seyonne (32-31-0), Panther's Kahndor (30-31-0), Marcus' Sister Slash (27-31-2) and Egor's ISabeau-1 (26-26-1) from the "Most Mediocre 50+ Warrior" conversation on a permanent, non-refundable basis.


CLIFF BANANA'S BC ROUNDUP
Blood Challenges were sharply up this turn (42 total challenges) as compared to the previous 3 turns, most likely due to the progress of Undefeated Warrior VI (freeing up more challengers). Or, has the arena just gotten that much more violent? Well, either way, it is more fun for all of us!

There was some anticipation (at least by me) of this turn's BC response by Lord Dragon against Hoffa for the previous turn's vicious downwards BC and kill (Taconite v. Shaun the Barbarian). However, on the blood challenge side we ended up like a jilted bride-to-be, waiting in vain. Instead, Lord Dragon responded with rather a personal 3 turn war declaration.

We are not entertained.


THE GOOD
Turn 357 saw a number of warriors foil BC attempts while at a fight disadvantage. The overall number of BC’s featuring significant fight advantages/disadvantages have been decreasing though our guess is that this is more due to a lack of opportunity than managerial intent. In any event, many congratulations go to… (Fight disadvantage in parenthesis)

Tolome’s SLOWPOKE (64)
Izziboticus’ GROUNDHAWG (44)
Yopi’s BIGHEAD (16)
J B Bladeswinger’s BURNOR BLOODBATH (11)
Pip The Troll’s SHWEATY (9)
Zeus’ BUDDY RODGERS (8)
Palor’s OBLIVIAN (5)
D-Man’s RAY (5)
Sanguine Savior’s BURN IN HELL (3)

Extra special congratulations go to Tolome’s SLOWPOKE who successfully defended a 64 fight mismatch BC for the 2nd turn in a row. Great Job!

This turn brought us a few 3rd-turn BC’s that were tied at 1 win apiece. Davron’s TRATORI was assaulted by Bandit’s RAZOR for the third straight turn, with RAZOR taking the series despite giving up 20 fights of experience. Likewise, Vic Vegas’ RATCATCHER RALPH took the rubber match over Dude Doomer’s FLEURIE 5 while battling with a 10-Fight advantage.

Palor’s OBLIVION turned the tables on Frank’s KING DAIN IRONFOOT, however. KING DAIN was attempting to get the much-coveted three-turn BC sweep having taken the first two victories over OBLIVION on turns 355 and 356. It took 3 minutes, but OBLIVION successfully fended off the challenge, likely much to Frank's chagrin.


THE BAD
This turns’ bad list features a smattering of poor decisions, often on repeat challenges. We start with the futility of Mydgar Le Gnome’s CAPTAIN KIDD, who lost his third straight challenge attempt against Sanguine Savior’s BURN IN HELL. Apparently dead set on contributing to the BC Roundup of late is Terminator, who unsuccessfully sent SUPA SUKA against Sleazee P. Martinee’s CORRUPTEROFTHEPURE for the second turn in a row. This reporter finds himself in the bizarre and unenviable position of having to write, “Good Job, Sleazee.” Wow, this day is going downhill fast! On a similar path was Shadowmaster’s DWEEBUS who struggled, and lost again, while challenging Pip The Troll’s SHWEATY.

On the flip side (but still qualifying as bad), we had the repeat BCs resulting in another victory for the aggressor. Terminator's BRUCE dropped down on Ill-Ox’s ANNABELLA. Ironman’s CAPT. CRUNCH returned to the well on Sanguine’s COACH MCGURK. This reporter would advise certain managers to be careful of poking Grizzly Bears with short sticks. Wrapping up the bad, and in quite un-ladylike fashion, was Lady Templar’s TWEAKER ROB challenging and killing Shadowmaster’s URGON.


THE UGLY
Terminator is begging to own the Ugly section of the BC roundup with his recent history. It appears that Cam’s appeals for mercy confused and angered Terminator, as he switched up the BC and sent an even MORE experienced warrior, YO MOMMA, after CAM SCOTTY. The result? YO MOMMA killed CAM SCOTTY in 2 minutes. Sanguine, who has been on the wrong end of fight advantage the past few turns, was trying out for the role of the bully in Turn 357 by sending THINGMAKER down 110 fights to take down Commandant Eitch’s PARANG GINAH.

Sanguine Savior’s THINGMAKER (110, 1997)
Terminator’s YO MOMMA (70, 1931)
J B Bladeswinger’s KORA LYNN (54, 1648)
Ilneval’s FORESAKEN (80, 818)
Terminator’s BRUCE (29, 666)

The Ugly BC of the week usually goes to the fight with the biggest disparity in experience, but this week it must be given to Terminator and his BC kill of CAM SCOTTY. The new player, the pleas for mercy, the experience (both in fights and in manager experience), and the repeat challenges all bundled together make this an easy call. While it was ugly it also should serve as a reminder to all players that the arena is a dangerous, dangerous place.

Swords High and watch your back!


MANAGER OF THE WEEK
Two non-team-fighting managers ended Turn 357 with identical win, loss and kill records of 19-6-1: Sanguine Savior and The Spoiler. Both of these managers also each took a cheap win through the glory of an ugly downwards Blood Challenge, though Sanguine's was of a scale far exceeding Spoiler's. Otherwise, Spoiler also took advantage of several targeted challenges (winning roughly half), whereas it appears Sanguine was something OF a target in 357. It's a close call, but for only sending the one BC and otherwise relying on pure warrior skill and random matchups for his 19 wins, Sanguine Savior is granted the Manager of the Week trophy for Turn 357, with The Spoiler taking home the Runner Up No-Prize.

Congratulations to both managers on excellent showings in 357.


RANDOM NOTES
Frank the Tank entered turn 357 with a solid crop of six young warriors carrying his Undefeated Warrior banner. He ended the turn eliminated from UW as The Hutch (20-7), Jah-Bul-On (10-6-0), Usel Ess (17-8-0) and Shiri all faced unfortunate random fight deficits in losses, while Oh Daesu (20-9-0) failed to win what seemed to be a close random match and Inari Mite (23-6-1) was submarined by a challenge from Acheron's Siren's Song.

The only other manager to lose six or more contestants from the UW this turn did so by not sending his warriors onto the sands. The Gazette hopes that Valcor Aurthor's absence is not a prolonged one.


THIS TURN IN QUOTES
"I remember Thag. I remember when he was first starting in the arena. I loved watching him fight. I loved watching him put people with perfectly good lower backs into traction. But most of all, I loved watching him with the elf ladies." - Xavier, commenting on the life of Acheron's late Half-Orc Thag

"Again the cycle begins, of Death and Rebirth." - Master Misfit, waxing philosophical on the death of Paranoid Peace

"Palor and I have long been respectful enemies. No two managers have caused as much carnage between themselves as Pal and I did in my first two years as a manager in Veteran's Blade. The last couple years have seen an unspoken truce between us and I intend to keep it that way. So, Thingy will sit this one out. But that could all change as I often send my stable to battle while less than sober, during which I am highly susceptible to peer pressure." - Sanguine Savior, talking to a collection of managers at Dux's Tavern

"It wasn't much of a fight...almost all of Mark Warner's hits were for big damage, and Sister Slash was really slow. It became very clear by the end of the first minute that Sister Slash was going to get stomped, and the end result of her death was no surprise." - D-man, discussing the death of Marcus' warrior in after-action.


WHISPERS AROUND THE VETERAN'S BLADE
One anonymous tipster filled in some background for us on a developing story from the last few weeks. Apparently, three weeks ago Fusion and Acheron were seen in a booh near the back of Dux's Tavern, talking in low tones and glancing furtively around the room. Our source tells us that they seemed to be both scared and angry. From what our source was able to overhear, the source of their frustration was most likely some machination of Chaos Lillith's that had interfered with some business of theirs. Coincidentally, or not, both managers have lost numerous warriors over the last few turns. Is someone, possibly Chaos Lillith, engineering the deaths of their warriors as some sort of payback?

The Infamous manager Mygdär Le Gnôme was saved by The City Watch last night as he was about to jump off the Tower Bridge into the deep and icy waters below. Captain Juge, the city's beloved Chief of The Watch, reported that the renowned Gnome was visibly drunk and possibly of altered consciousness. Mygdär was reputed to be muttering about the shame of his Undefeated Warrior performance and was complaining about his turn results since January. Mygdär Le Gnôme was released into the custody of Funky Funker and the entire No Bozos Squad, who are now supporting him through his depression.


That's if for this week's edition of The Gazette! If you'd like to submit items for a future edition or provide feedback and clarifications, please pm them to my account on pitt.bloodspit.net.

-The Staff at The Pitt Gazette
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