A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Teamwork, persistence, triumph against odds undermined by focus on foul play, cheating, taking any steps to win.
Positive Role Models
Players in league fight other players on field, brawl with hostile crowds, refs. Everyone for themselves, then their team.
Ease of Play
Deep, complex rule set governs all aspects of play; fate of players left up to dice rolls, which can be impossible to control, predict.
Violence & Scariness
Players get punched, stomped, tripped, knocked out on field, assaulted by crowd. Lots of slow-motion, close-up highlights of painful blows; quick spray of blood when character is hit, but no gore shown.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Female characters, cheerleaders wear revealing, tight uniforms, move suggestively.
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"F--k," "s--t," "t-t," "damn" occasionally.
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Products & Purchases
Based on popular Warhammer franchise, which includes books, games, figures.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Some alcohol references; one team uses tankards to hit players.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Blood Bowl II is a downloadable action take on the sport of football, set in the fantasy world of Warhammer. Players coach teams of orcs, elves, dwarves, and other characters in turn-based action, attempting to defeat the other team. This is done by scoring touchdowns but usually also is handled by knocking opposing players out on the field. Players are frequently punched, stomped, tripped, or attacked by the unruly crowd and referees. Some blood is shown during hits on players, but no gore is shown. Female characters, such as cheerleaders and dark elven players, wear tight, revealing clothing and move suggestively. "F--k" and other profanity can be heard at times from the play-by-play commentators; players are mute. There are some alcohol references, and some players hit others with tankards on the field. Though multiplayer is unmoderated, there's no need for players to speak to each other, and it's optional for players to read league multiplayer notes.
Is It Any Good?
Despite the carnage-filled title, this high-impact football simulation is a surprisingly deep sports game. True, the on-field violence is stronger than other football games because you can stun, injure, or even kill opponents with punishing hits. But under the blood sport (which shows very little blood), there's a lot of strategy waiting to be found. In fact, a roll of the dice affects every action you take, so you may need forethought, planning, and luck to succeed. This can be both exhilarating and infuriating at the same time. If Lady Luck is with you, your squad can create large opportunities on offense or defense, but one bad roll could cause you to cough up the ball, miss a throw, or get one of your star athletes brutally injured. You can influence these dice to a degree (and even purchase re-rolls for catastrophically failed attempts), but the simple fact is there are no guarantees.
This level of unpredictability makes gameplay shockingly even among every team, even though they all have their advantages and disadvantages. Sure, some teams (such as the Chaos squad or the Dwarves) may attempt to cheat or cripple your team, but even their violent tendencies can be overcome. If you find yourself consistently losing against a particular squad (especially if you're in the midst of a losing streak in a league), you can always attempt to upgrade your athletes or purchase special inducements to make your squad stronger. If you're a football, fantasy, or Warhammer fan, Blood Bowl II could possibly be your new favorite sports game.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.