Blood Bowl 3 closed beta starts early 2021

A closed beta for Blood Bowl 3 will happen early 2021, developer Cyanide and publisher NACON have announced. Right now, one direct method of scoring an invite has been revealed, with more to be “revealed later”.

The third game based on Warhammer’s gruesome take on American football is scheduled to arrive at some point next year, but players especially eager have an opportunity to kick-off early. Pre-orders of the latest edition of the board game, Blood Bowl: Second Season Edition, come with a code for the closed beta. Other ways of getting in will be provided, but how and when is still to be confirmed.

Essentially a strategy game series, Blood Bowl turns the endless war of the Warhammer universe into endless, brutal sports contests, matches played out in turn-based combat. Games Workshop created the format in the eighties, and videogames have been developed based on it since the nineties. Cyanide’s modern take on the property started with Blood Bowl in 2009, moving onto Blood Bowl 2 in 2015, and now Blood Bowl 3, each more gut-wrenching than the last.

According to the official description, the game will have 12 teams with their own pitch and cheerleaders, a single-play campaign and multiplayer modes, and “more customisation options” than any Blood Bowl game before. The two previous installments were a bit dense and unwelcoming for newcomers, so if this next one can streamline things, it could be a hit.

The cinematic trailer’s a pretty good estimation, honestly:

Here’s Blood Bowl 3’s Steam page, and here’s where you can pre-order the board game. Blood Bowl 3 is due out sometime in 2021.