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Volume 1, Issue 34 - Turn 382

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Volume 1, Issue 34 - Turn 382

Post  lord_dragon on Fri Jun 03, 2011 10:59 pm

Turn 2 of the Alliance Olympics (the Intramural Turn, as it will be known henceforth) saw much action of interest, and not just within the tournament. Several managers rallied to Acheron's call for assistance in stopping those who challenged into the first turn of the tournament with great passion. Additionally, our newest Race to 100 speeds towards a quick and heady conclusion. All this and more in this week's edition of the Veteran's Blade's finest newsrag.

Onward.


ALLIANCE OLYMPICS ROUND WRAP-UP AND PREVIEWS
What a difference a turn makes, eh? With all but two alliance teams now tied with a win and a loss after two rounds of play, its looking more and more like Team Frostbite and everyone else (except Brut Squad).

Much as in our preview of the first turn of Alliance Olympics, the Gazette staff went 3 for 4 on our predictions for this turn, with only GAP's stunning and resounding clobbering of PDA eluding the expectations of our panel of experts. And what a drubbing it was, with GAP capturing 50 points (after one was docked for an errant challenge on Arch - Angel by Staple Gun) off 30 wins while PDA could only muster 15 wins and 29 points. Odds makers were jumping out of second story windows around the city after this result, but more on that later.

Elsewhere, and with surgical precision, Legion of Darkness team Frostbite dismantled their partners in Team Black with 28 wins and 2 kills (opposed by 15 wins and a single kill). With 50 points on the turn, Frostbite tied Team Gap for the largest output in round 2, while Black managed 28 points in defeat. As noted, this outcome did not exactly surprise the Gazette staff and continues to affirm our prediction that Frostbite is going to dominate their way to the overall Olympics Championship game.

Both of the other contest match-ups, while they met our expectations in the end, sparked a few interesting conversations around the city after the turn. In the only other intramural match-up of the turn, between the sub-factions of the Council of the Cauldron alliance, DIE and STUD, only 15 total challenges landed. Sanguine Savior was heard telling others that, unlike the other intramural alliances (which went hog-wild to the tune of 45 and 43 challenges landed between their sub-factions), the Council internally chose to approach things more cautiously, limiting match-ups to pre-arranged fights, and no more than 3 per member.

Acheron, coordinator of the games, when approached by our reporters to comment on this policy adopted by the Council factions, shrugged it off. "The Intramural week is not one of my favorite concepts of the Olympics and I would have preferred not to have it. It was a side effect spawned by my decision to allow Alliances to field two teams and the fact that we only got to eight teams total even then. Hopefully AL2 will see more participation from temp alliances and I can institute bye weeks or separate divisions to avoid Intramural matches. All that said, what Council did is completely within the rules of the Olympics. They made challenges. STUD won. End of controversy."

In the only non-Intramural meeting of the turn, that of NBS v. Brut Squad, we had a replay of the STUD v. PDA result from Turn 1, in that the team with fewer wins (the inimitable NBS) ended up with more points when the dust settled and took home the overall win. Unlike in turn 1, however, the losing team so far has been mum around town, even though the loss dropped them (Brut Squad) to 0-2 in the games.

Overall, while Frostbite held to form where did Round 2 leave the rest of the teams? After their performance in Round 2, GAP jumps back into the bigger picture in a big way, while PDA has to slip slightly from their status as the clear number two, shaking the very foundations of the many betting establishments in our fair city (remember the odds makers we mentioned?). The outlooks for both STUD and DIE remain cloudy as neither team has exactly lit the world on fire across the first two turns of play but still boast extremely solid and seasoned rosters. NBS, with 3 kills and 53 points accrued, look stronger than expected after two live fire matches despite a first turn loss to DIE. While Black appears to be slightly stronger than both Council teams in terms of points accrued (though not necessarily by kills) they continued to suffer in round 2 from a lack of active participation from members not named Palor or Lord Dragon. Bringing up the basement, Brut Squad is going to need to make a very quick turnaround to get back into the action or will be reduced to playing spoiler across the remainder of the regular season.

And so, what about Round 3? In the matter of GAP versus DIE, and on the strength of their resurgence in Round 1, the Gazette Staff is predicting a GAP victory in Round 3. In a match that could still foreshadow the eventual Championship match-up, we're expecting to see another standout performance from Dux Mortalitas and a close fought victory by Frostbite. Brut Squad settles into a tough match-up against STUD in which we are predicting many kills by the Council sub-faction and a large margin of victory as well. Finally, in the matter of NBS v. Black, we foresee an upset by the Gallic alliance and a narrow one at that, especially if Lord Palor cannot get his third roster slot occupied by something that less resembles a scarecrow.

Therefore, our predicted standings after Round 3 (with some beautiful numeric symmetry):

Frostbite 3-0-0
GAP 2-1-0
STUD 2-1-0
NBS 2-1-0
PDA 1-2-0
Black 1-2-0
DIE 1-2-0
Brut Squad 0-3-0


FEATURED ARTICLE – RAUL'S ALLIANCE UPDATE
Like milk from the breasts of god cows, it is I, Raul Anjinarikar Siv, bringing you tales of great courage and also courage that requires subtle redefinition as cowardice. The Alliance Olympics enters its second turn, the brother against sister turn, in which those who thought to flood the circuit with multiple teams would find themselves together again for the first time.

Much like the anticipation of the crop growers for rain, so have I waited to see the results of LoD’s first intramural match. And it did not disappoint! Eyes wide, mouth agape, I could barely wipe the spittle accumulating in an oasis on my chin as match after match was fought (by the way Gazette, I expect full reimbursement for said matches!). 43 total matches all told and 3 dead warriors who pay the ultimate price for failing their masters. And Frostbite, every bookkeeper's favorite and the long odds curse word, crushes Black under heal like the ill-tempered donkey crushes the scorpion. There is no question in my mind, or that of my masters', that the smart money is on the only undefeated team in the contest.

I prefer juxtaposition in such cases, so let us look where the men and the boys met first at the only real match of this round that didn’t require intra-alliance intrigue. Brut Squad v. the NBS...another close match between the two underdogs of the desert. NBS took a drubbing from the Brut Squad this turn in wins. Ok, not really a drubbing, but in pure win-loss terms, NBS fell 4 behind the Brut Squad. But in true fashion, the NBS came out a letter ahead of the BS, with a razor edge 4 point victory! Taking a clear MVP award for the NBS was Ted Supreme, master of virility, bringing in 15 points including an up-honor kill. We can only hope that the BS that has been flying is stopped all around as the time goes on.

Now we take a breather, as what was to be the biggest disappointment of the turn saw STUD and DIE come face to face with their worst nightmare! Random matches. Mostly. That’s right, fans of the Largest Alliance Ever would see the smallest number of matches on the turn with only 14 meets between the two of them. Some said this was a horrible position of sportsmanship, others, primarily those in coffin and wake service professions, decried what they thought would be a banner week. I, for one, give a subtle but appropriate golf clap. Look at the other alliances, blowing themselves to pieces in some feeble strongman attempt to show who has the largest pair of trousers. If I had been running two teams in an alliance, it would have been a tie at 0-0! Goodness people, do you not know how to game the system? Well done Council for a smart move. Do not get used to the compliments, they will not be free next time.

Finally, the match that most hoped would cull the stench of dots from your fair city, GAP v PDA. In a surprise upset that had many coins jingling in the purse of insane old men with small books at the arena track before lunchtime, PDA fumbled and was destroyed by their brothers in GAP as Xavier, ever the smart mathematical darling of the alliance, found himself losing so many matches that his coveted 60% rating went the way of the water antelope. Speaking of math, let’s do a little alliance algebra shall we? GAP was crushed by Frostbite last turn, and GAP crushed PDA this turn. What then do you think will happen when Frostbite meets PDA this turn? I’m thinking you’ll wish not to eat a heavy meal easily given up by violence when you go to see this week.

Well, again my time has run out and my accountants say that if I keep going at this rate I will need to find another profession to supplement my income. Perhaps a vendor of fine beef products at your stadium which would allow me not only to make a small bit of side coin but see the matches for free? Perhaps. But for now, I bid you "Salaam and Good Hunting."


RACE TO 100 WINS
As some around the city had been recently predicting after the death of his team fight partner two turns ago (Plop! Splash! Flush!), Nads' Pre Monster ended up in singles in Turn 382, while joining his chief competitor in this Race, Sleazee P Martinee's Conan the Barbarian, locked in a dead heat at 98 wins.

Surprisingly, given Martinee's penchant for challenging, both warriors ended up in random singles matches that lasted under two minutes, and, less shocking, both warriors walked off the sands with win number 99 in hand (Conan at the expense of Poeg's Hognosed and Pre Monster over the unconscious body of veteran mediocrity Leonord DeQuirm).

That brings us down to the wire now. Which warrior will hit win 100 first? Neither warrior is a slouch, so The Gazette is expecting both warriors to win next turn unless Sleazee works his challenge magic in an attempt to thwart Pre Monster.

Tune in next week to find out how this plays out!


THIS TURN’S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
In contrast to another deluge of veteran warriors to come over the next couple turns, 382 saw just a single ascension to super-veteran status, in Hosehead's Elf Slartibartfast. Though, unlike Neurofibromatosis last turn, Slartibartfast survived the day's combat to fight again, he did not do so with a win. Xavier's Santas poured rain on Slartibartfast's day of celebration by avenging an earlier loss and has now shown some domination of his Elven brethren on back-to-back turns (having killed Lady Templar's Paris Hilton last turn).

Despite the loss, the Gazette Staff sends congratulations the way of Hosehead who has now put a third warrior into the 100+ concurrently.


NEXT TURN'S 100 FIGHT BIRTHDAYS
Just three turns ago we saw back to back weeks in which eleven total warriors made their 100th Fight days. Turn 383 will not quite equal the feats of either turn, though four warriors will be making their 100th appearances on the sands of the Veteran's Blade arena, all by different managers. The lone sub-.500 warrior crossing this career milestone will be Frank's feared hatchet tosser, Wise Thug, who brings 45 wins and a kill to the table next turn and is also on something of a solid run, with 12 wins over his last 18 matches. Joining Wise Thug at 100 Fights, though with significantly better records, will be Sleazee P Martinee's Elf CorrupterOfThePure (with 67 wins and 5 kills), Izzboticus's feared Human Groundhawg (64 wins and 8 kills) and, finally, Overlord's Halfling Ironfist (59 wins).

Good luck to all four warriors going into their very special day this coming weekend.


NOTABLE DEATHS
A moderately deadly turn greeted fans, warriors and managers alike when they came to the arena this weekend past, but in a small break from normality, not one warrior above 100 Fights was slain on the turn. While the managers of superveterans' went to sleep easily after the turn was done, the same could not be said of many independents and a couple of Alliance Olympics managers.

We have often said in this space that randoms are deadly, but this turn one could quite honestly say that challenges of all stripes, including Blood Challenges, were at least equally deadly to the veterans of our arena. In fact, the top two kills of the turn (in terms of lost fight experience) were both non-randoms and both involved the death of the challenger rather than the challenged (but that's another story).

In the first of these tragic squanderings of fine warriors, The Spoiler sent his oldest fighter and Elf Hurricane to visit Lady Templar's Elf Coffe Lady. Perhaps he only wanted a fine caffeinated beverage out of the fight, but no, instead Coffe Lady resisted his advances. In less than a minute, Hurricane experienced the ultimate crash and was no more.

Hurricane blew threw the arena for many days, accumulating 44 wins and 3 kills in 84 fights.

The second fight in which the challenger was made quite dead, involved Bandit's BC on Scotty Body's impressive Sack with Halfling Bigger. Bigger had also failed to bust Scotty Body's Sack in turn 381, so this outcome would only serve to reinforce that sometimes its better to cut your losses rather than to have Sack bust you.

Bigger, a Halfling that Bandit was quite proud of and will be missed by many fans, passes after 47 wins and 3 kills in a career spanning 82 fights.

One does not look to D-Man's stable for impressive killers, and yet as of Turn 382 he now manages the killing-est living warrior among the Council, Half-Orc Black Nightshade. D-man's killer Half-Orc acquired this new-found fame by offing The Overlord's Half-Elf Lorien in 3 minutes of singles action this turn.

Lorien returns to the great beyond whence we all come having put together a winging 78-fight career including 47 wins and a kill.

Many of you are probably thinking "Bender B. Rodriguez...what an odd name." Marcus' Half-Elf Pain was likely thinking the exact same thing...until part-way through the second minute when he ceased to be able to think about anything at all.

Pain endured 71 fights on the sands, accruing 42 wins and 4 kills before succumbing to merciful release.

Lord Kelvin's stock of veteran warriors was not long ago among the envy of the arena, but a few turns of bad luck has greatly decreased his stock of talent. That trend continued, sadly, with the passing of Half-Elf Erinys at the hands of Tolome's Halfling Padding in a singles match.

Erinys expires after a 73 fight career that included 39 wins and a kill.

Gouged Eye Inc. is a name not often mentioned on the good side of veteran kills. Nor is he renowned for cheap challenges and kills. But this turn apparently someone urinated in his "Wheat Torus" breakfast cereal, because not only did he down challenge one of the worst warriors in the arena, Aconite's Half-Elf Shattered, but he mercifully ended the Half-Elf's string of incompetence.

Shattered lies in pieces after 61 losses in an 88 fight "career".

Nemesis took a vow of vengeance upon those who interfered with the Alliance Olympics in turn 1 and unleashed his wrath upon JB Bladeswinger many times this week. Only one of those fights led to the extermination of a JB warrior, however, with Nemesis' Dwarf Jefrey (with one F) falling upon and slaughtering human Sli in just under 2 minutes. We here at the Gazette hope that JB gets the picture, but we're not exactly holding our breath.

Sli ends his days on the sands with a final record of 36-28-2.

Two veteran kills this turn fell under the purview of the Alliance Olympics, but only one occurred in intra-mural action: Pitt Lord's murder of The Demon's BloodKnight in a challenge issued forth by Dux Mortalitas. Of course, Legion on Legion violence was the only intra-mural match-up to generate any kills at all, which should come as little surprise until one considers that the likes of Sanguine Savior took part this turn for DIE. No matter, however.

Dux had kind words for Bloodknight after the fight. Speaking to reporters just outside the arena, he noted "Regarding BloodKnight, he was to my surprise a rather effective martial artist. I Don't see to many MA's with more than 50 fights, and considering how well he did in his fight against Pitt Lord, I'm sad to see him perish. Pitt Lord got the lucky coin toss to edge BloodKnight out with the last strike. Had it been BloodKnight who won that toss, I am sure my warrior would be no more. I wish Demon the best of fortunes with his next rookie."

BloodKnight caps a decent career that included 34 wins and 2 kills in 65 fights.

Not that the death above was the only Legion on Legion veteran kill of the turn, but the other notable slaughter happened in randoms and to two members not active in the Alliance Olympics (at least this turn) as Lord Kelvin's Ghost Mushroom put an end to the struggles of Solincar Nelflan's Sharima

Sharima stumbles to a final record of 30 wins and 40 losses, never having tasted the sweet fruit of a kill on the sands.

Our other veteran Olympics kill of the turn, as you might have guessed from our comments above, involved the NBS and Brut Squad participants arranged against each other in Turn 382. Spinning a delightful upwards challenge into a 4-point gainer, Ted Supreme's Miss Ogyn took slightly less than 2 minutes to put Drachir's Harold into a permanent sleep-like state.

Harold ends his days with a decent record of 30-27-3.

We come now, finally, to the only qualifying team fight kill of the turn, and yet more heart-ache for Jim the Half-Ogre, who has seen the numbers of his dedicated, experienced team fighting squads whittled away over the last dozen or so turns. This turn's loss of The Real Kissie Poo's final true partner in team fighting crime, Revenge of Fluffy! at the hands of Mongolian Knight's The Pit Knights team had to be especially impactful as it leaves Kissie in much the same boat as Flounder 2: resigned to team fight with much younger warriors (not an ideal situation) or left to face singles combat in the 100+. We're personally hoping to see both warriors emerge from teams to fight some of the top warriors in the arena in coming turns.

And so we close the books on another turn of brutality and look forward to more blood and guts on the sands of our fair city in Turn 383. Sword high!


CLIFF BANANA’S BC ROUNDUP
Greetings my bloodthirsty brethren! Olympics action is in full swing and it is very hard not to note the drop in Blood Challenges since it started. With a scant 21 matches to report on this round, we have the lowest total since the Gazette has been in publication. Perhaps the cooling temperatures of Fall have similarly cooled the arena's bloodlust? Somehow we think not.

THE GOOD
Another meek round turned in by our arena's stout Blood Challenge defenders with only four warriors standing tall and proud as the dust cleared. Scotty Body's SACK really took the day however. Giving up 16 fights, SACK turned back the challenge of Bandit's BIGGER and proceeded to execute BIGGER in a tight one minute bout. Another lesson delivered to those who would think to prey on perceived lesser foes. Great job, defenders!

Scotty Body's SACK (16)
The Badman's TORRID TINA (16)
Poeg's OLD CHEDDAR (12)
Storm Front's DOWN POUR (5)

THE BAD
Unfortunately, the recurring theme of the Bad, over the past five turns or so, has been my alliance-mate, Poppa Balrog. The beat goes on for Senor Balrog, dropping four BCs over the past couple of turns, with three of them on his own challenges. Similarly, this turn, Poppa attempted to drop a downchallenge onto Poeg and was unceremoniously dumped in the effort. What started as a vice, has turned into a problem for Poppa B. and it now seems that he just doesn't know how to stop. We can only hope that Friend Balrog will think of his warriors and stop issuing these destructive and embarrassing BCs. Stop, man! Just stop!

THE UGLY
It should come as no surprise to loyal readers, that the list of the Ugly far outpaces the good and accounts for over 40% of the total BCs for this cycle. We've had several repeat challenges occur from those who enjoy the comfort of having no challenge in their warriors' regular fights. The Spoiler, The Overlord, Pan, and, our all time Ugly BC Champion, Ilneval all went to the well again to grab an easy win. Was Dux Mortalitas dancing to an Ilneval tune? It sure seems that way as Dux checks in with a triple-digit downchallenge, dropping down one hundred and seventy fights to get knocked around by Poppa Balrog's
MILLIE MILKBAGS before pulling out a two minute victory. Thankfully, we can report that no gladiators died in the whole of the Ugly BC action this round.

Dux Mortalitas' HSAB (170)
Ilneval's FORESAKEN (75)
The Spoiler's EPIDEMIC (56)
The Overlord's DIXIE CUP (43)
Marius' ATRIOS (36)
Dude Doomer's EXITER 2 (32)
Xavier's CONFESSOR EKO (28)
Pan's XEVIOUS (27)
Bill Taylor's DIO (26)

What will next turn bring to the BC table? We can only look forward and wonder.


MANAGER OF THE WEEK
Frequent readers of this space know that we generally grant the honor of Manager of the Week to the top non-team fighting manager of the turn who also fielded a full 25 separate fights in said week. Last week, however, we chose to focus in on managers who were taking part in the highly competitive Alliance Olympics, and we do so again this week as well. On the bright side, with one of these managers, Cliff Banana, tied for the top Singles record on the turn, at 19-6, and pulling in an outstanding 11-4 record from his match-up with Alliance-mates PDA (Xavier, Marius and Fusion) we can reward someone who fulfills both of our preferences in choosing a winner.

Congratulations, therefore, to Cliff Banana on his excellence in Turn 382. Manager of the Week is yours.


RANDOM NOTES
With his 8th kill, Black Nightshade not only becomes the Council's deadliest active warrior, but also D-man's deadliest warrior of all time.

Ilneval took the opportunity of a turn off from participation in the Alliance Olympics to accumulate 16 points of dishonor with a plethora of ugly down challenges on the turn mostly at the expense of the well-deserving Boot Strap Billy.

The Spoiler quietly accrued his own 12 points of dishonor with similar ugly challenges spread amongst a diversity of managers to grab a solid hold on second place for Turn 382.


THIS TURN IN QUOTES
"First of all, I have the highest regard for Demon. We have a long history of killing off each others' better warriors. Invariably, when Demon and Dux warriors have a close match, someone will fall never to rise again. This turn it was Demon who took the loss. Next turn it could be one of my warriors to take a permanent vacation." - Dux Mortalitas, waxing philosophically after the turn at his Tavern.

"Bender kills Pain. Big Deal. If Marcus wants revenge, he should really take it out on Sleazee. I wanted Bender to fight Hammer of Gruumsh in the turn's intra-alliance thingy. Bender was pretty excited...however Sleazee wanted no part of it, and I had to inform Bender that the fight wasn't going to happen and that he would most likely have to fight a random. The last thing I heard him say (angrily) was, "Someone's pendin' for a bendin'" That someone just happened to become the epitome of his name." - Sanguine Savior, expounding on the circumstances of a warriors' demise at the hands of his own Bender B. Rodriguez in a tavern after the day's combat.

"Black Nightshade is just practicing his killing techniques. He is preparing to put those techniques to good use in the near future." - D-Man, answering reporters’ queries about his killingest warrior ever after Nightshade's 8th kill this turn.


WHISPERS AROUND THE VETERAN'S BLADE
We hear that Chaos Lillith stood to gain an significant sum of money from an unknown source were she to land a goodly number of challenges against Vic Vegas last turn. Mysteriously, these challenges never materialized and we hear there was some embarrassment from the noted intriguer's camp after the turn around this situation

We hear that Nemesis will continue to assist the Alliance Olympics avengers this turn, but no clues to his eventual target have leaked from the camps of our favorite vigilantes as yet.


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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