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Volume 1, Issue 32 - Turn 380

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Volume 1, Issue 32 - Turn 380

Post  lord_dragon on Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:53 pm

Welcome to our 32nd issue of the Pit Gazette, filled to the brim with coverage of the Veteran's Blade's 380th turn of fights. This turn we open up our in-depth coverage of the Alliance Olympics while also bringing back our world-famous Race to 100 Wins feature, which had been on hiatus for several turns.

ALLIANCE OLYMPICS WEEK ONE PREVIEW
The Alliance Olympics opens with a bang this week with not a weak link among the alliance teams. That is not to say, though, that some of these alliances are not relatively untested. Indeed the still-unnamed Brut Squad, with Bruticus, Mr. Binx, Drachir and Danny D Bloody filling out the team, are fighting together for the first time this week, untested in alliance on alliance action. The same could be said for the newly formed Legion of Darkness sub-team, LOD Frostbite, with Poeg joining LOD irregulars Dux Mortalitas and Caesar Invictus, but we here at the Gazette (and we're sure many fans agree) do not feel that these two teams are quite facing the same scale of coordination challenge. Time will tell, though.

Last week we gave our predictions on the overall outcome of the contest's action. This week we thought we would narrow our focus and make a call on the Week 1 match-ups in specific.

The featured match-up this week is, of course, STUD v. PDA. This match-up features several of the top managers of the arena, if measured only by warriors who are ranked in the top 200 in Veteran's Blade. Sleazee P. Martinee alone brings eleven such warriors into this fight (though the top 3 cannot reach down and touch any of his opponents this turn), with Hosehead and Potness Monster combining for another six. Xavier, Marius and Fusion bring along a combined 18 warriors of the same scale. This should make for some pretty even and exciting match ups overall. And it’s not like these foes are unfamiliar with each other; Sleazee has been tangling with the top-level warriors of Xavier and Fusion for much of the last 10 turns. What will be interesting is to see at what level each team relies on chancy negative honor challenges. A few choice upsets could severely swing the outcome of the day's fighting.

This one is a tough call, but we're going to go out on a limb and predict an upset win for PDA in round 1 on a few hard-fought victories off of downchallenges from STUD.

Moving on to GAP v. LOD Frostbite, this is a difficult match to call on a lot of accounts. Firstly, the main strength of the Frostbite roster is truly at the top of the arena, where Poeg, Dux Mortalitas and Caesar Invictus combine for 18 warriors in the Top 200 (compared to 5 for GAP). GAP's warriors are, after some major recent attrition and retirements, very much more focused at the low- to mid-level. We know, for one, that Dux selects his warriors for their long-term potential, meaning his lower level folks just might be vulnerable to the more mercurial GAP gladiators. Additionally, if Team GAP has one big advantage, it is Cliff Banana's practiced ease at the winning upchallenge. At three points a pop, this could really turn the tide.

So, whereas The Gazette does think that Frostbite is going to be a major player against some of the other alliances, we feel they are vulnerable to a team like GAP. We're calling this one an upset squeaker that goes to GAP on the strength of some 3 point wins from Cliff Banana.

In some ways, our two remaining match ups, DIE v. NBS and LOD Black v. Brut Squad, could be compared to the match up between GAP and Frostbite, in that both involved two alliances with disparate strengths (DIE and Black at the top level and NBS and Brut Squad in the low to mid). NBS and Brut Squad are harder to compare to each other as alliances go, however, because NBS has gained some valuable experience fighting against pretty much every manager or alliance in the arena at some point or another, whereas Brut Squad will be facing, as noted, their first action together this turn. Even so, NBS has not faced a focused war or opponent as yet, so it’s difficult to predict how well they will coordinate focusing on just three managers. In both cases, we're calling wins for the more established alliances, and runaway wins at that. DIE and LOD Black will be 1-0 after this turn's action.

So, how wrong will The Gazette turn out to be? Check in next week. For now, our tally:

Week 1 Predictions:
GAP (1-0)
PDA (1-0)
DIE (1-0)
LOD Black (1-0)
LOD Frostbite (0-1)
STUD (0-1)
NBS (0-1)
Brut Squad (0-1)


FEATURED ARTICLE – RAUL'S ALLIANCE UPDATE
The heat in this town, it is enough to make I, Raul Anjinarikar Siv, wonder what it would take to appease Efreeti, making life wet for the brow. But just as camels would wallow in the shade, so have the alliance warriors rested for preparation in the most glorious of contests, the Olympics. Coin jingling is not needed friends, for I peddle my information to you for the meager pay the Gazette offers this poor soul.

But the subject of the alliances this turn was not each other, or some pre-season fighting that would have been pleasing to report on. No, instead it was this humble reporter, whom received threats and a veritable headless menagerie in his mail. You would think that the Council was my father-in-law and Xavier my mother-in-law by the clamor. My first ones at least, I am on good terms with the third set...we do not speak of the second pair (thank you my Padishah for solving that problem). An old wise man who had grown wealthy from his exploits once advised me that it would be proper to ignore threats, that they are mere words that are only emboldened by reaction. Well I am not old, nor wealthy, so I can assume it does not apply to me. My hand is forced, I must respond.

First, to Danny D. Bloody…a thousand apologies. I did not mean to insinuate that you were dangerous, in or out of the arena or that you where somehow untrustworthy. The term "mostly" in your language could be seen as an accusation of dishonesty. For this, I am sorry. What I should have said was, that on occasion, one may find themselves watching their gladiator lose in such a manner as for them to exclaim ‘Who was that?’ or ‘Not another random match against LoD’ or ‘Where the hell is my warrior's arm?’, only to find that you are smiling from the other end of the arena. But by mostly, I meant to say, this would only happen infrequently. Which is to say, rarely. As opposed to not at all. So it was, in my own way, a compliment. Do not expect to get many of them. There is no need to thank me.

Next, I should address the budding governmental experiment led by the appropriately named D-man. Well I don’t think he leads...he speaks. They vote, which means, let’s see, there are twelve of them, so, at least 7 of them have said, no that is not right...let me start again. There is some group of people, perhaps a majority that may or may not include D-man, that has accused me of having small mental faculties. I can assure you, not only do I employ very talented analysts and book keepers, but they work in a spacious, warehouse-like space. Furthermore the staff numbers over twenty. That is to say the faculties of my mental staff are not only large, but the building itself is big. So, once again, you have found your intelligence wandering into the area of the map labeled ‘poor’.

And to Xavier...your words, they wound me. I am from the desert, a more appropriate metaphor would have been ‘scorpion’ or ‘snake’. But to associate me with the people of the sea-land is an insult to my ancestors and my gods. It is not my fault you and your kind represent the weakest of the alliances, odds-wise at least, and are displeasing to the eye. Prove you are a bigger man -- and I do know how tall you are in person -- and hold your tongue. My mother, rest her weary head, told me that if you cannot say a compliment to your enemies then you should be silent while you strike them across the face.

Lastly to address Chaoslillith. I trust the amount of money the Padishah has been paying you to see that I can continue to gift the world with little Rauls is still pleasing to your coin purse? Does it not weigh you down? More to say, that money which he has paid you to make me a eunuch in case of abject failure is also protection money. He wishes no one else to unman me, lest the threat hold less water than a female yak’s bladder. So let’s put it to bed. The unmanning threats that is.

Look at the sun! It is low, and I have promised to MC the opening ceremonies of the Olympics tonight. I hear Rihn BladeSinger will be bearing the torch, naked, through the streets of the city to light an effigy of Asiago on fire. And the effigy is made of the warrior’s namesake cheese! I have a bucket of boiled potatoes and twenty-four forks, meet me there and we will dip into the filth together and fill our bellies to a painful extent. Salaam and good hunting.


THE RACE FOR 100 WINS PART THE THIRD
With three different warriors within four wins or less of the elusive 100 Win Club, The Gazette staff has decided its time to clear the cobwebs and dust off the old Race For 100 Wins section once again. So who are our contestants this time? Well, it should come as no surprise, given the average lifespan of his warriors is something we're starting to shake sticks at, that Sleazee P Martinee has Conan the Barbarian sitting at 97 wins after a 2-minute challenge beat down put on Poeg's Asiago this turn. More surprising, given the disparaging comments generally made by his own manager, Mystical Charade, Sanguine Savior's favorite whipping boy, is himself at 96 wins after a one-sided random thrashing of Scotty Body's Scrotum this turn. Neither of these warriors, however, is leading the pack in the current Race to 100. No, that honor goes to Nads' own Pre Monster, with 98 wins in only 116 fights, most of them gained in team fights with his partners in crime among The RC's Enforcers. In fact, this turn brought Pre Monster his 98th win, though it did cost him his last experienced teammate, Plop! Splash! Flush!, killed dead by Jim the Half-Ogre's Designation: Target team.

Will this mean Pre Monster will fight alone next turn? If so, does he remain the favorite in this race to 100? The Gazette Staff feels this becomes a more even race between Conan and Pre Monster if they are both in singles next turn, though of course, how Sleazee wields Conan against PDA, if he can at all, will affect the picture tremendously.

Either way, fans and journalists alike can't wait to see how this plays out.


THIS TURN’S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
Though it was a banner turn for the 100+ as a whole, with six warriors surviving their 100th Fights to take their places among the other super-veterans of our fair arena, it was a rough day for the majority of those warriors, as only two of the six could lay claim to a win in Turn 380: Ocultto and Harboth Gutgore. It's especially ironic that Harboth would be one of the two lone winners, given he is also dead last in wins among the six warriors that crossed the line this turn. Still, even with losses, Rawg Brainsplatter, Fracker, Export and Godzilla must be praised for their efforts over their first 100 Fights, as each has accumulated solid winning records over the first major phase of their careers.

So, congratulations indeed to Sleazee P. Martinee, Hosehead, The Demon, Stalker and Poeg for shepherding a fine crop of warriors across the line together and we wish them all well in the times ahead.


NEXT TURN'S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
If you thought eleven new superveterans in two turns was something special, well you were right. The Gazette believes that trend to be very positive for the fans. Turn 381 will not be able to claim the same scale of veteran savvy, but it does bring something special of its own to the table: two arena personalities who will be managing their first 100+ warriors starting in Turn 382. That's right, once next turn's fights are complete, Dude Doomer and Vic Vegas will both be able to point to warriors they manage (Barbaq 3 and Neurofibramatosis respectively) that have made the semi-elusive, always-exclusive 100 Fight mark. For the No Bozo Squad as a whole, Barbaq 3 represents the pinnacle of longevity so far for that alliance, with not a lot of talent within 30 fights of the 100 mark for the moment. For Vic Vegas, an independent, Neuro (as he is called by friends) stands as his premiere killer over his own career in Veteran's Blade, with 8 murders so far despite the relatively disappointing record. Like the NBS, Vic's stable is somewhat light of warriors that will threaten the 100+ for the near future. Still, both managers have to be excited. 100 Fights marks the point where a lot of managers and fans really start to pay attention and both can finally say "I was here".

Good luck next turn to Barbaq 3, going for his 59th win, and Neuro, hoping for #44.


NOTABLE DEATHS
For the last few weeks, the Gazette reporters and staff have had it relatively easy chasing down quotes and summarizing the lives of the relatively few deceased over that time. That all changed in Turn 380, with 13 warriors above 50 fights slain in combat. Our reporters earned their paychecks (and some overtime pay) this week, surveying fans and managers about the careers and final fights of the departed.

As with most turns that have an extensive kill list, Turn 380 could lay claim to a single member of the 100+ who would fight never more: Davron's last remaining 100+ warrior, HA2, who fell to The Demon's eldest warrior Valandra at the end of 3 minutes of action. As with all but one of our qualifying kills this turn, HA2 fell in random, singles action as well.

HA2, that rarest of rares within Davron's stables (a Half-Orc) ends his days with 79 wins and 3 kills in 143 turns of action.

If one asked around at the various book-makers within our city, one would have learned that Polar Bear was at or near the top of all of the most active Dead Pools being bet upon in our city. So, for the bettors, at least, the demise of this Cliff Banana warrior at the hands of Sanguine Savior's Horror-Teria came as little, if not no surprise at all. Indeed, what looked like to the casual fan an even, back and forth, bloody fight ended suddenly in the second minute as, following a misplaced shot by Polar Bear, Horror-Teria put some extra oomph into a blow to Polar Bear's abdomen that ripped the GAPPDA warrior nearly into two neat pieces.

Sanguine Savior emerged from the arena after the fight, satisfied and gloating. “Polar Bear's death is very sad and highly disappointing. Bearsy challenged and lost to Teria a couple turns ago and I told Teria to kill him on the following turn. The challenge didn't go through. Teria then submitted his challenge papers in triplicate this turn but I had them pulled at the twelfth hour... I wanted to save the death for the Alliance Craptacular. Then the committee goes ahead and pairs 'em up anyways and Teria forgets the plan and murders Polar Bear. Murder was always the intention... I was gonna call the kill and everything! The guys initials are PB! How could I not!”

Polar Bear goes extinct after a solid 49 win, 2 kill career of 88 total fights.

Ilneval, seemingly plagued by the worst luck known to man in recent days followed up on the loss of Quellus Rex last turn, by having to say sayonara to two more veteran winning warriors this turn, the first of which, Cydonia, became the first ever life claimed by Palor's Elf Rhubarb. Worse still, or not, depending on your point of view on the little hairballs, Cydonia was Ilneval's lone Halfling and a shockingly good one at that.

Cydonia goes to the grave having managed a stellar 49 wins and a kill in 70 fights.

In later action, Ilneval then saw Half-Elf Tehelya Ride fall to Lady Templar's Nixon after 3 minutes.

Ilneval was overheard by our reporters explaining the impact of his loss of Tehelya Ride outside the arena complex after his demise. “Tehelya Ryde was never a good warrior. He was basically something I threw together one night during my early years of genetic altering. Nothing I would write Gruumsh about by any means, not like he could have read it anyway. I realize that next time I should learn not to use the lit bits of body parts of certain races together.”

Tehelya Ride plows into the afterlife after a career that spanned 69 fights, with 36 wins and 2 kills to his name.

At times in the last few months, Tolome has been seen around town trumpeting a comeback for his relatively hapless Half-Orc Thwup. Sadly, any comeback was permanently thwarted this week as Nads' Wert fatally thwumped Thwup in 2 minutes of action.

Thwup belly flops into the afterlife after taking only 32 wins and 2 lives in 79 fights.

The first of two challenge deaths on the turn involved Bandit's kill-happy Human Bam Bam picking the wrong week to challenge Scotty Body's previously kill-less Half-Orc, Sack. Sack may be sad no more, but we're sure Bandit is.

Bam Bam dies dies having laid claim to 37 wins and 5 kills in 58 turns of action.

With her second kill in the last five turns, The Badman's Torrid Tina has been living up to her name. The victim this turn was Valcor Aurthor's suboptimal Human Krox, cut down during a fairly short 2 minutes of fighting.

Krox, a veteran of 66 fights, dies having won slightly under half the time he stepped into the arena but with 4 notches on his belt.

Nemesis and his warriors don't account for a lot of kills in our fair arena, so we must call extra attention to Fist Blister, a Half-Orc who, with his 3rd kill this turn, leads Nemesis' stable in "permanently dispatched opponents". The victim? Damion's Elf V.T.

Fist Blister seemed pumped after the match, emerging from the tunnel yelling, "Who the hell would put a little girl in the arena with me. I ain't no SNAG. She gets treated like any other gladiator...BADLY".

V.T. perishes with a final record of 33 wins and 1 kill against 24 losses.

"Poeg" and "Dwarves" go together like "Peanut Butter" and "Bananas", so it should come as no shock that Nammu is another in a long line of excellent Dwarves belonging to the off-kilter Legion of Darkness manager. Nammu was also one of four warriors that Pit fandom has to thank for knocking off sub-par warriors floating by on their barely earned veteran status. Along with Nammu, therefore, we send out hearty thanks to JB Bladeswinger's Burnor Bloodbath, Fusion's Book and Danny D. Bloody's Otto Brauer (himself a candidate for cleansing, though) for offing Solincar Nelflan's Erodeka (29-34-0), Egor's Vexed (22-38-1), Panther's Payne (22-31-0) and, worst of all, Gramps' J. Staling D.D.S. (17-40-1). Really, we can thank Gramps for that last one, as Stalin died on his own challenge. No matter which warrior had died in that match-up, we all would have won. It brings a tear to my eye just thinking about it, really.

For the final veteran farewell of the turn we move now to the top team fight match up of the turn between Jim the Half-Ogre's Designation: Target team and Nads' The RC's Enforcers, which we've talked a little bit about already in this issue. The RC's Enforcers won the battle but lost the war as Plop! Splash! Flush and his 59 wins went the way of the dodo during the fight.

And that concludes another scintillating look at the veteran dead from a rather bloody turn of our fair sport. Til next week, when we hope to see even more sub-500 veterans slaughtered without mercy.



CLIFF BANANA’S BC ROUNDUP
Ah! Turn 380. A slight up tick In total Blood Challenge contests this round, logging 36 total fights. Back to our usual trends, as the Ugly outweighed every other category in volume of matches. Despite the up tick in overall fights, the round only saw a single warrior lose life in, perhaps, the most evenly matched contest of the cycle


THE GOOD
Our thin list of the Good, sadly, did not feature any truly significant upsets. However; we did see the rather mediocre SKNZ, who took an 11-11-5 record into the fight, turn away the challenge of Poppa Balrog's SKIPPY SKIDMARK at 17-7-0. Congratulations to SKNZ and all of our BC defenders!

Warden's JIM BEAM (14)
Dude Doomer's ROQUEFORT 2 (12)
Arch-Angel's YAMAHA (10)
Ffunker's POPPA BALTRINGUE 2 (7)
Bandit's BIGGER (2)
Arch-Angel's SKINZ (2)

THE BAD
The list of the bad continues to grow more and more intriguing with each passing cycle. Unfortunately, we seem to have a large number of repeat attender this turn. Poppa Balrog checks in, again, this cycle, by dropping 2 Blood Challenge matches, running his three turn total to 1-7-0 and also losing for a third straight turn in challenging ROQUEFORT 2 with SCARLET JOHANSON. The only saving grace is that SCARLET managed to make this fight last 3 minutes, slightly improving on her performance from week to week, but still registering the loss. Continuing with the bad we find The Warlord. The Warlord dropped 2 BCs this week as well, but it was of particular note that they were really awful challenges. The Warlord did not really give his gladiators a true chance in challenging up 30 and 40 fights, respectively. The Warlord's 0-1, NORM challenged up in targeting the 23-8-2 MATHIAS VERSHAVE; while the 5-4-0 GEAR HEAD challenged up to the 27-22-1 SHAHIRA. Doesn't appear to be very sporting. In fact, if we were in The Warlord's stable, we would seriously consider a general strike until management was replaced with someone sane. Finally, we recognize Drachir for his overall BC struggles this round. Drachir dropped 3 matches this turn, with one coming on a borderline up-challenge of his own making.


THE UGLY
The theme of the Ugly remains the same, even if the names change slightly. More than a third of our total BCs made the list of Ugly this turn. An infrequent visitor to the list of the Ugly is Eca Za, leading the way with an 88 fight downchallenge on the young and promising DEUMOS. Dude Doomer is the sole manager with two Ugly BCs this round, but was also a manager who fell prey to one, as The Spoiler's EPIDEMIC dropped down 56 fights for a quick visit on SAINTE MAURE 5. The remainder of the list of villainy can be found below…

Eca Za's PLAGUE (88)
Ilneval's FORESAKEN (75
The Spoiler's EPIDEMIC (56)
Stalker's BRUISER (46)
The Overlord's DIXIE CUP (43)
Acheron's MANSLAUGHTER (38)
Angel of Death's SEMAPHORE (34)
Commandant Eitch's SERENDIPITOUS SOL (32)
Davron's FIREFLY (32)
Mydgar Le Gnome's ROBESPIERRE (30)
Dude Doomer's KROTAL 8 (30)
Dude Doomer's VENOM 4 (28)
T-Mote's DWAN (26)

Another turn, another swath of dishonor. Til next time!


MANAGER OF THE WEEK
19 wins and 2 kills with no challenges issued makes Manager of the Week an easy call for Turn 380 as we are pleased for the first time to be able to recognize Arch - Angel in this space. In fact, two of those 19 wins came against more experienced Blood Challengers as well. Well done indeed.

While his roster is not currently filled with legends in the making, there seems to be some very strong warriors Arch - Angel has been hiding in the sub-30 fight range. Could this be a prelude to some very strong turns to come? Time will tell.


RANDOM NOTES
Poppa Balrog was the big Honor winner this turn, with 10 of his 12 points coming from the challenge slaying of Dux Mortalitas' young, lamented Half-Elf Xexex.


THIS TURN IN QUOTES
"Rawg BrainSplatter and Harboth GutGore had been replacements of those who I'd entered in the Death Tourney (along with one other named Horror of Yig who managed to obtain an 18-13-2 record before his team was replaced). Those that I entered into the Death Tourney did quite pathetic, as they only managed ONE kill amongst the three of them! Their replacements have made up for their slack by shortening eleven gladiator's lives, though. Rawg has impressed me. Normally I would've passed on his build as an Orc, but seeing as how my PaleHand team will always be Orcish I admitted him anyway and it's worked out for him so far. The same situation happened with Harboth. However, he has yet to impress me. It doesn't seem to help that his learning curve is pathetic given his native intellect. Things could still change for him if he decided to master a few skills. It'll be interesting to see what life at 100+ will be like for the both of them." - Sleazee P. Martinee, holding forth at a local tavern after the 100th fights for both Harboth and Rawg in Turn 380.

"Ok, enough is enough....Someone around here is going to die if this crap doesn't stop. I blame that damned Gazetteer for this. Ever since that article, I have had nothing but bad luck. This has to end...NOW!! Somebody get me a live chicken, 2 rats, and a Francisca!!! The gods must be appeased." – Ilneval, overheard outside his stable after the turn.


WHISPERS AROUND THE VETERAN'S BLADE
Large sums of money have already flowed into bookmakers on the upcoming Alliance Olympics. Unsurprisingly given good odds to win the whole thing was LoD Frostbite while the odds are currently very long for both the NBS and the Brut Squad. There could be good money to be made (though the Gazette, of course, does not endorse gambling in any way) in taking a flier on either of those teams to make the playoff round as a flier.


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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