Enlarge (credit: Games Workshop) Welcome to Ars Cardboard, our regular series on tabletop games! Check out a complete listing of all our board and card gaming coverage.

For gamers of a certain age, Blood Bowl has a special resonance. Pitched as “the game of fantasy football,” it’s gridiron for Tolkien fans, in which two teams taken from numerous fantasy races beat the ever-living crap out of one another while vaguely attempting to get a ball over a line.
It is amazing.
This is the game’s first boxed edition and its first new player models in something like 22 years—a criminal amount of time to wait for something so good.

And while the components may be all-new and its models may benefit from two decades of improvements in plastics technology, the rules themselves are basically unchanged, and they’re all the better for it.
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