Battlegame is one of the more popular sports of Ill Bethisad. The game was devised in the 20th century and is relatively similar to paintball. Its popularity comes from the high frequency of warfare in Ill Bethisad and it especially boomed in the 50s after the Second Great War. In 1952, the International Battlegame Association (IBA) was established and the first world championship was held in 1958. The World Battlegame Championships are held every five years.
Battlegame is played by two teams of 16 players (at the start of each round). The objective of each round is either to eliminate the players of the opposing team or to capture the central room of the enemy base (explained below). In order to achieve this goal, each of the players have weapons. The weapons inculde rifles, grenades and knives. In all cases paint is used to mark that the opponent is "killed". The rifles are more or less similar to those used in paintball (that is, they shoot special balls of paint which mark opponent's clothes). The grenades explode and spills the paint around, thus also "killing" the opponents (and teammates) if they happen to be nearby. The knives are special painting sticks; one needs to touch the opponent using them in order to mark him. Unlike the rifles and grenades however they are silent and the usage of them is unlimited.
Battlegame is played in special stadiums (in terms of this game, the "stadium" means not only the whole building, but also the area where the game is played). At each end of the stadium, there is a base, one for each team. The base is a building shell with 7 feet-high walls, but no roof (so that the spectators can see what is going on; in amateur events the bases are sometimes roofed) which consists of one central room and several corridors and other rooms. The exact plan of the Battlegame bases is always the same and does not depend on stadium (the standard of this plan was agreed upon by the IBA). The center of the stadium is known as the battlefield or just the field. There are many barriers (which are of varying heights but less tall than most people), "bunkers" (lowered ground) and other defined elements. Like the bases, the planning of these elements is always the same in the official games.
Battlegame is played in rounds. There are 20 rounds in every match. The length of each round is 4 minutes and consists of two phases: the deployment phase (30 seconds long) in which both teams take up positions and the Captains tell the other players which tactics they will use. They can only take up positions at their side of the stadium (their base or their side of the field) and cannot engage in battles at this time. When the referee (who is watching the game from above) declares the start of the battle, the main phase (the battle phase, 3 minutes and 30 seconds long) begins. One of the teams starts each round as the attacking team. The goal of this team is to either eliminate all the players of the opposing team or to put the symbolic "flag" (actually a kind of ball) in the central room of the enemy base (known as the command room) and guard it there until the end of the round. Only if the flag is there at the end of the round a point is awarded. However it might happen that the defending team will manage to capture the "flag" from the attacking team and thus launch a counter-offensive. The defending team has the same goals as well. If the round ends and no team achieves its goals, no points are awarded. If one team manages to achieve one of its goals it receives a point. In the next round the teams switch places and the former defenders begin as the attacking side. Each team must spend the same number of rounds as defender and as attacker. If the game results in a draw and an overtime is needed, the overtime consists of 2 rounds, each one with a different attacking team. If the overtime ends in 1:1 or 0:0 then another overtime is played. The maximum nuber of ordinary overtimes is 4. In case 4 overtimes are not enough to determine the winner, the final overtime is played. This overtime is played under different rules: time for it is not limited, there is no flag and no reinforcements (described below); the teams start not with 16 players but with all the players who are not disqualified (see below). The only possible way to win the final overtime is by "killing" all the members of the opposing team.
When the "flag" is put into the command room or captured by the opposing team this is declared aloud through the speakers.
One player on each team is the Guard. The Guard usually stays in the command room of the base. Some rules are different for the Guards and therefore they are very useful in defense. Another player is the Captain who coordinates the play and decides the tactics. If the team attacks or defends in groups, the captain usually declares who will be the leaders of these groups. Other players are usually categorised by the role they play in the game. For example, one who is frequently used to carry the "flag" is usually called a "flagman" (but the "flag" might be passed from one player to another - it is not too uncommon to pass it across whole battlefield for example, but this is risky as an opponent might catch it as well then), one who usually attacks is called an "attacker", one who usually covers the attackers from behind is known as the "coverer", one who usually defends the base is known as the "defender". "Grenadiers" try to distract the opponents by using grenades (a grenade takes a little time to explode and thus the opponents usually quickly run from the room where one is thrown to avoid being eliminated), "snipers" try to take down the enemies from far away. The number of players playing in each category depends on the tactics employed; not all teams use every category in every game.
There are some limitations on the amount of weaponry and ammo each player may carry in each round.
Fighting is not permitted; however players who fight are not punished imediately by the referees. Only after the players who breached the rules are "killed" (or, if they are not "killed" that round, when the round ends) can they be punished - namely by disqualification for the rest of the match. If a player continues to play after he is "killed" he may be disqualified for the rest of the match as well, while if a player continues to break rules (for example, fight) after he is killed, he may be disqualified for a number of upcoming matches as well. As a player may only be disqualified after he is "killed", starting fights, especially later in the game, is even a tactical measure for some teams. IBA, however, discourages this very strongly in recent years as it wants to make Battlegame more popular as a sport for whole family and therefore tries to change its reputation of being unnecessarily bloody.
Some other rules:
- A player cannot stay in a single room (in the base) or stay behind a single barrier or hide in a single bunker (in the battlefield) for more than 12 seconds (with the exception of the Guard). This rule was introduced in order to make the game mobile, it is known as the 12-second rule.
- A player who is "killed" is considered to be alive for one second after the paint reaches his body. If he uses any weapons after this time and "kills" somebody, the "kill" is considered invalid and the person who did it may be disqualified. The referees watch the implementation of this rule closely and these days cameras help as well. This is known as 1-second rule and is one of the rules that create most controversies.
- No more than 3 players can be in a single group (that is, in a single attacking group, or, in case of the defending team, behind a single barrier, in a single bunker or in a single room).
- Fighting is not permitted.
- The teams are entitled to reinforcements of one additional player per each minute of game (at 1:00, 2:00 and 3:00 of each round). Reinforcement players are permitted to watch the game from a higher place prior to them joining the game and thus they play a crucial role in informing the team about the tactics the opponents are using (of course, the tactics are usually altered after each reinforcement time).
- The match is played in 3 sets. The first two sets are of 6 rounds each and the 3rd set consists of 8 rounds.
- Teams may have up to 25 official members. The players used may therefore vary from round to round depending on the tactics applied.
- Intentionally hiding the flag (i.e. putting it down in such a place where it would be difficult to see for the members of the opposing team) is not permitted, but hiding while carrying a flag is permitted.
Matches are controlled by six referees. Four referees are watching the game from special places above the stadium and the fifth referee is sitting elsewhere near the TV sets that are showing the game and he takes the decisions on the 1-second and 12-second rules. The sixth referee is the main one and he is the only one who is permitted to enter the stadium and announce the decitions of the referees to the teams.
Tactics and strategy
Battlegame is sometimes refered to as "chess on field" which implies a great importance of tactics and strategy in the game. Tactics are the means used by the team to win (or not loose) a single round whereby strategy refers to the means of achieving a succesful result in whole game.
Tactics heavily depend on whether the team is offending or defending. The tactics includes initial deployment, pre-planned actions (such as how to counter a enemy breakthrough or how to retreat in case this would be needed) and a lot depends on it. There are various possible initial deployments for the teams. The defensive deployment may be extensive (covering most of the team's side of the field), deep (only a few players near the boundary and most of the players near the base), close (most players near the boundary), middle and various combinations thereof. What tactics will be used in a particular round depends also on the strategy - for example, if the strategy requests that the team would attempt capturing the flag that round then it would most likely use close defense that allows a quick and massive counter-attack. Main phase defensive tactics include active defense (attempting to capture the flag), passive defense a combination of these too. The main phase defense may also be either stable (players trying to remain in their pre-assigned places unless retreat is needed) or unstable; there also exist some other categories. Different defensive styles maybe applied at different times of the round or at different sides of the stadium. Ofensive deployment may be classified by where the flagman is at the start, by the size of the vanguard and the other lines. There are many different ofensive tactics, usually it is easier for the ofensive side to choose the pace of the game, they usually decide when to end the trench war and attempt breakthrough and so on. Ofense may be massive (most of the players moving across the boundary), partial or reserved. It maybe close to non-existant when strategy does not require the team to win the round. Various formations of players, both on ofese and defense, also have their names and so does the most popular deployment schemes (they are frequently named after clubs or nations that are or were known to use them). The tactics are sometimes pre-agreed upon or declared by team members using the codes.
Strategy includes the goal of the game (decisive victory, landslide victory, draw or even landslide loss) and the battle plan which tells when team should attempt to win the round and when not losing would be enough. Strategy may be offensive (usually massive offense and close defense tactics are employed), defensive (reserved offense and deep defense) or neutral. Strategy may be altered during the course of the game based on the result. For example, it may decided to make strategy more offensive in case the team is losing and only a few rounds remain.
As Battlegame is based on actual war, the national Battlegame teams usually play in uniforms that resemble the military uniforms of the respective countries (although they are usually stylised and have certain colorful bands (usually colored as a flag of the respective country) so that it would be easier for players to distinguish teammates from opponents. Local Battlegame clubs usually base their uniforms on various symbols of the city they are based in, such as the coat of arms.
Before each Battlegame match a certain "ritual" is performed. It includes both teams marching from the base of the opposing team to their own base (the original reason for this practice was so that the teams could check the stadium layout as it was not standartized once), carrying a flag of their country or club. Both teams stop at the middle of the field during this ritual and the anthems are played - if the national teams are playing, then those are the national anthems, if the clubs are playing, then the club anthems (anthems, flags and other symbols are very important for the battlegame clubs). After this the leaders of the teams may say several words to the spectators and the teams continue the march. They raise the flags (country flags or club flags, not the "flag" which is played with) in a pre-designed place over the command room of their base, shout the national motto or the club motto aloud and wait for referee's sign to start the deployment phase of the first round.
Battlegame is especially popular among militaristic nations as there is a general belief that a country that is good at Battlegame is militarily strong as well (that is, it has good soldiers). This belief comes from the early times of Battlegame when the best Battlegame players were actually the veterans of the Second Great War. While there are still some Battlegame players in the national teams who are or were soldiers, now many are professional Battlegame players.
Due to such viewpoint, the matches played by the teams of the countries that were in war (or are having very bad relations towards each other) are usually very popular and it is a matter of honour for each country to win. Out of these, the matches between the Ethiopian and Egyptian national teams are especially famous, but the Germany-France, New South Cambria-Beihanguo, Insular Japan-Beihanguo matches and the other old rivalries tend to be very interesting as well.
Battlegame matches are not normally cancelled due to bad weather - they happen whether there is heavy rain, snow or wind, whether it is very hot or very cold. The explaination behind this is that a war goes on in any weather conditions. Therefore the teams usually have several types of uniforms for different temperature. Despite this tradition however several official battlegame matches have been cancelled due to weather contitions - but that happened only when these conditions made playing battlegame absolutely impossible - namely there were earthquakes or furacanos.
As strategy and tactics play a crucial role in Battlegame and, unlike in most other sports, a Battlegame player is usually unable to see all his teammates at the same time due to the walls, barriers and other elements, it is very important for a team to have a special code to be able to communicate with each other, to inform whole team about the changes in the tactics, future actions or the actions of the opposing team, such as the preparation of ambush. This code usually consists of various actions that create a great sound, such as shooting into the air or shouting. Of course, different teams use different codes for different actions and the code is frequently changed (sometimes even during the match) to prevent it from being decyphered, as succesful decypherment of some of the opposing team's code would give a serious advantage. The codes might be either completely newly crafted (e.g. some meaningless words or some ammount of shots) or logically derived (e.g. shouting the words spelt backwards). The earlier has a disadvantage of being hard to memorize and therefore limiting the number of different signals, while the later is easier to decypher. Usually only team members who are in a safe place (i.e. far from the enemy lines) declare the coded signals loudly as otherwise the loud sounds would make a player an easy target. In some countries where Battlegame is popular, some of the originally meaningless words that were created as the code signals for victorious Battlegame teams later found their way into the local languages.
Battlegame has a rich terminology, a large part of which is adopted from the military. Some of these terms are official while the others are only used by the fans.
- Advance - Going forward, closer to the enemy base (normally this term is used to refer to a situation when whole team or almost whole team goes forward after the opposing team retreats).
- Advantage - Having more not killed players than the opposing team.
- Ambush - A situation in which player(s) of one team attack players of the opposing team unexpectedly (see also trap).
- Annihilation - End of game when one side scores much more points than the other one. Usually at least 5 or 6 points more. Unlike decisive victory, annihilation gives no advantage for the winning team, it is just a term used by fans.
- Barrage - The usage of multiple grenades in order to distract the opposing team, force its members to change positions (usually practiced at the end of the trench war to prepare the breakthrough).
- Behind enemy lines - A situation when one or more members manage to get beyond the positions of the enemy without destroying them.
- Boundary - The line crossing the middle of the field which may not be cossed by the teams during the deployment phase.
- Breakthrough - A situation in which one of the teams (normally the attacking team) stops the trench war and manages to get through the opponent lines.
- Capture - Taking the flag from the opposing team.
- Counter-offensive - A situation when one team manages to capture the flag and starts attacking.
- Disqualification - A ban on a player from continuing the match or from playing in some upcomimng matches.
- Element - Wall, barrier, bunker or other pre-defined "building" that exist in bases or the field.
- Flag - The ball.
- Flagman - The person who is carrying the flag at the given time.
- Frontier - Area around the boundary.
- Goal - Carrying the flag to the command room of the opposing team base and putting it down at the pre-defined place in the middle of that room. Unlike many other sports, a goal does not necessarily means that the team will get a point. Only if the flag is in the middle of the opponent's command room at the end of the round the point is awarded and the goal that resulted in this is known as successful goal. Therefore quick goals are rare in Battlegame as it is almost impossible to defend opposing team's command room for several minutes when the opposing team still has a lot of "surviving" players. Moreover, the attacking team in such a situation is very vurnerable and it might end in a succesful counter-offensive by the opposing team.
- Going berserk - Starting a fight. This is not permitted, but the person who starts a fight may only be disqualified after he is killed.
- Hide-and-seek - A situation in the game that usually happens when one of the teams is grossly outnumbered but the remaining players manages to capture the flag. Understanding that it would be impossible to succesfully take and guard enemy base, they try to hide from the members of the opposing team until the round ends.
- Kill - A successful usage of a weapon against the enemy.
- Line - A relative place of player in the field after the deployment phase. First line is closest to the boundary, fourth and fifth line are near the base.
- Liquidation - The end of the round when all the players of one of the teams team are killed. In case of liquidation the round is considered to be won by the team which achieved the liquidation.
- Massacre - A situation where one team kills a large number of the opposing team's players without sustaining major looses itself.
- Net - A strategy to counter hide-and-seek. The net involves a number of team players going through the field in a such a way that all the parts of the field would be checked. Usually several team members do not take part in the net and guard the base.
- Retreat - A retreat of the team deeper into its side of the field. This is normally done by the defending team if it lost many players during the trench war phase of the round, so that holes in the defense would be covered. Another reason for retreat might be setting a trap.
- Strategic defensive/Strategic retreat - A strategy (encompassing more than a single round) of defense. I.e. the team may have a goal just not to loose the flag and only in exceptionally good circumstances to attack, and not to attempt counter-offensives.
- Strategic offensive - A strategy (encompassing more than a single round) of offense. I.e. the team has a goal to capture the flag in defensive rounds and to definitely score a successful goal in offensive ones.
- Strategy - System of tactics which encompasses more than a single round. A strategy is usually pre-agreed and may be changed based on in-game events. For example, it may become more defensive if several successful goals are scored.
- Tactics - Tactics in a single round.
- Throw - A high pass of the flag accross the field so the flag could be picked up by the teammates there. It is easy to lose a flag this way and during the throws the flag is very visible to the members of the opposing team as well (so they could prepare an ambush at the landing side). Therefore throws are usually done only when little time is left and the distance to the enemy base is still large.
- Trap - A purposeful retreat by the team or other actions that are meant to deceive the opposing team so that the players of the opposing team would take up some position where they would be immediately surrounded and ambushed.
- Trench war - A situation in game that usually happens in the start of the round and takes at least one minute. During this time, the teams take positions behind various barriers and attempts to kill the players of the opposing team from these positions. Usually the kills happen when the players have to change their position due to the limitation of time one could stand behind the same barrier.
- Vanguard - The first line of the offensive team or the group of the offensive team that is closes to the base of the defensive team at the time.
Battlegame is thought to have been played for the first time among the children of the Federated Kingdoms (namely the surroundings of London) in 1946 or 1947. The children in their games frequently try to emulate what the adults did and those were the times of the Second Great War in which the Federated Kindoms were fully participating. This first version of the Battlegame of course was far from what the game is now, but the main idea of two teams playing war against each other by using various things that leave marks on opponent's clothes as weapons was there. It is believed that at first only the "knives" - marker pens - were used. However eventually the children "invented" more weapons, such as throwing ink cartridges at enemy as "grenades". By mid-1947 this game became very popular among the children of the Federated Kingdoms but, however, the real breakthrough of Battlegame happened when one English businessman and inventor, noticing the possibility for market, established the company "Victory inc." and started mass production of the special rifles that were shooting paint instead of ammo. These rifles largely changed all the homemade Battlegame "weapons". By the time the game was already being played outside the Federated Kingdoms as well, but a clever marketing policy for these rifles further increased the popularity of the game. The Battlegame became popular as a sport among the adults as well. Needless to say however, there were no official rules nor standards for the Battlegame. "Victory inc." tried to establish and promote various possible variants of the game, each of which needed various different weapons and different number of players. In addition to rifles the company started to produce paint "grenades" and other types of Battlegame weaponry. As the Battlegame became a mass craze in 1948 and started to grow in popularity even in countries that were not participating in the Second Great War, many other companies started to produce weapons and other equipment (for example, easy-to-wash clothes and paint) for the game. The game was played in the Holy Roman Empire and her allies in the last years of the war as well however it only became very popular there after the war ended when even several former weapon companies started to produce the Battlegame equipment (as the demand for weapons understandably became lower when the war ended).
The years 1949-1952 saw the establishment of many amateur Battlegame teams and the first championships were organised at the city level in the Federated Kingdoms in 1950. In 1951 the best teams of whole England fought against each other in a special championship. In 1952 similar championships were organized in Cambria and Scotland as well and the winners of these championships met in final tournament in Berwick-upon-Tweed where the London Rippers team became the champion of the Federated Kingdoms. Prior to these championships the matches between two teams were usually played according to unique rules that were agreed upon by both teams prior to the match. With the start of first semi-official torunaments however it was attempted to create a single set of rules, although some things still differed from game to game - for example, the exact layout of field and bases was not anyhow defined and depended on the place where the Battlegame match took place.
Similar developments as in the Federated Kingdoms happened elsewhere too - in the Holy Roman Empire, France, NAL. In Ethiopia and Russia the development of the Battlegame was somewhat slower but the game was gaining popularity as well, although the heavily damaged economy there meant that few could afford "real" Battlegame equipment therefore homemade equipment was widely used. However, there was one problem - in each of the countries the rules were developing independently and therefore different rules were used and different weapons were permitted according to official rules in different countries. In 1952 the first official matches between teams of different countries (not counting different countries inside the Federated Kingdoms) were played - the champions of the Federated Kingdoms fought against the champions of France. The match was played according to compromise rules but however the differences in rules and the increasing popularity of Battlegame (it was popular not only to play it - the number of spectators in the major matches was increasing, the information about these events started to be printed in the sports pages of the main newspapers, Battlegame matches became a popular subject to place bets on) led to the establishment of the International Battlegame Association (IBA) later that year. The association was established by the main Battlegame teams of the Federated Kingdoms and France and was sponsored by Victory inc and other companies. The official goals of the association were to define the official international Battlegame rules, to promote the Battlegame as a sport to play and to watch, to make the Battlegame matches easier to watch and to organise/oversee the international events. The yearly La Manche Tournament where the teams from the Federated Kingdoms, France and since 1954 Batavia participated became the first such event. The matches between the teams from the "old rivals" - countries such as England and France - or the competing cities were especially popular.
By 1953 the official Battlegame rules were defined although they were followed only in the official competitions in the Federated Kingdoms, France and Batavia at the time. Some of the currently existing rules however were not present at the time and the layout of standiums was still not completely defined (although the required height and size of walls and barriers was defined and it was also decided then that the bases should be roofless so that it would be easier for the spectators to watch the game). Each team that wanted to participate in the international events had to play at venues that would fit these requirements and would have places for the spectators to watch.
In the 1955 the IBA decided to organise the European Championship where national teams would participate instead of various local teams. At that time it was declared that all the countries which would have expressed they will to participate would be permitted to do that. This was seen as a possible way to promote the IBA-defined rules of the Battlegame among other things. The idea for the European championship of national teams at first met a great deal of scepticism even in the countries were the Battlegame was very popular. It was believed that it would be hard to objectively choose the players that would play for the country and in addition to that it was believed that very few countries would participate. As it turned out these pessimist beliefs were wrong - even larger number of the national teams than expected (10 while it was expected that 8 teams would participate) expressed their will to participate in the competition. This included the Holy Roman Empire, a country that lost the Second Great War. There were many protests against the possibility of the Germans having their own team in the competition, however the IBA stayed politically neutral despite the pressure and accepted the German application. The players who were to represent the national teams were selected differently in various countries. For example in France a famous former Battlegame player was appointed as a coach of the national Battlegame team and he then was inviting players form the best French Battlegame teams to a special camp where he selected the final squad. In some other countries however the selection of players was not so smooth and as at the time many of good Battlegame players were amateur, some did not have enough free time to participate in the competition.
The European Championship was held in London in early 1956 with participation of 9 nations - England, Scotland, Cambria, Ireland, Armorica, France, the Holy Roman Empire, Batavia and Lombardy (Bohemia withdrew before the competition). The event was extremely popular. The Germans became the European champions after beating the English team in the final. This was very unexpected for the non-German fans as the German teams did not participate in the international events prior to this and the progress of Battlegame in the German states was largely unnoticed. The German victory raised a major outcry. The tabloids of the Federated Kingdoms published articles with titles like "England-Germany 1:1" the next day as if the Battlegame victory would have been equal to the victory in the Second Great War. Associating the national Battlegame team with the national pride and the quality of the national army was already common however. The German victory started major riots in London and the team of the Holy Roman Empire had to be protected by police in order to get out of the stadium safely.
Such events further popularized the Battlegame. After the successful European championship IBA decided to organise similar events in other continents and eventually crown everything by a world championship in 1958. The efforts were more successful in some continents and less successful in some others (for example in the South American championship only 3 nations participated) but the championships happened everywhere. Based on the performance in these local championships the best teams won the right to participate in the world championship of 1958. Eight teams were invited to participate in this tournament (3 from Europe and 1 from each other continent - West Asia and East Asia were and still are regarded as different continents where it concerns Battlegame) and the Battlegame reached the new heights of popularity. This time England won the event after beating France in the final. The European champions Germans fell in the semifinals after loosing to France in a quite scandalous match where the Germans have blamed supposedly subjective referee for their loss (as he decided that the last shot in which a German player "killed" the last French player was done after the game time ended).
After the initial success it was decided to organize world championships every 5 years and this tradition continues until now. The continental championships were to be organized every 5 years as well. The popularity of the Battlegame and the number of countries participating increased greatly since then and since the third competition cycle special qualification games started to take place before the European championships (and later they were started to be organised before the other continental championships as well) as there were more teams wishing to participate than it was possible to admit. The European hegemony ended in the second cycle already when NAL became the world champions.
The then-snorist nations started to participate in the international competitions since the 4th cycle.
The women are officially permitted to participate in the championships since the 5th cycle. However, similarly as there are no male and female armies, there are no separate events for men and women (unlike in most other sports). Therefore the number of females participating at the proffesional level remains very low and in some national teams (especially those from the Middle East) only men are allowed to participate.
Similarly to most other sports, there are many proffessional and amateur Battlegame teams. Most of the countries have their own Battlegame leagues, either one league or several (primary, secondary and so on). There are also various supranational leagues and tournaments. The main IBA sponsored leagues cover whole continents and in these leagues the best clubs of those continents play against each other. In addition to these leagues there are smaller supranational leagues such as the Federated Kingdoms league where the best teams from the English, Scottish, Cambrian leagues play. There are also many regular open tournaments (normally held during the seasonal breaks in the national leagues) where the teams could win various trophies. A team that won a trophy of a tournament once normally is not permitted to participate in that tournament again and instead participates in other tournaments. The trophies are given to the team forever. It is a great prestige for the major Battlegame clubs to have a large ammount of these trophies from many prestigious tournaments. Even to be accepted to participate in some of the best tournaments (such as the Paris Cup that is held every five years in the capital of France) is a great achievement for teams. In addition to the proffessional leagues tournaments there exist many leagues and tournaments for various amateur teams.
There are two common systems in the club tournaments - the knockout system, where only the playoffs are played and the teams leave the tournament after loosing a single match, and the traditional system, where both the matches in groups and the playoffs are played.
Under the traditional system there are two ways of counting points prior to the playoffs. The typical system is called "Battlegame style" or the "Loose-gain system". Under this system a team receives 2 points for decisive victory, 1 point for landslide victory, 0 points for draw, looses 1 point for landslide loss and looses 2 points for decisive loss (the victory or loss is considered to be decisive when one team wins 3 or more rounds more than another during the game). The arguementation behind this system is that it accurately represents the situation of wars - i.e. if the team (which represents an army) looses, the country looses lands in the war (points in this case) and if it looses by much more lands are lost. This system is prefered by many battlegame fans and it is used in all the competitions for national teams, but as for clubs, another system for counting points, known as the "Sport style" or the "Stay-gain system", is also widely used. Under this system in case of draw both teams are awarded 1 point, the victorious team is awarded 2 points (and in some cases 3 points if there is a decisive victory) and no points are deducted for the loosing team.
Although it is common in other sports as well that a club is considered to be representing the city it is based at, nowhere this is so important as in Battlegame. The team name, uniforms, anthem, flag and other symbolics of the club are usually based on the symbolics of the city the team is based at. However not always the Battlegame clubs represent cities - they might as well represent regions or city districts, or some particular group of people (this is more common with the amateur clubs and the clubs of the lower leagues) - for example, the disenfranchised or the muslims (in the countries where they are a minority). In this case the clubs also choose the symbolics accordingly. The amateur Battlegame teams of schools, universities, companies, political parties and other such organizations usually use the symbolics of the organizations they represent.
Championships (national teams)
The World Battlegame Championship is perhaps the most important Battlegame event and its cycle takes 5 years. In the first and second years of that cycle the national teams all over the world are playing qualification matches in order to get into the continental championships (the qualification is played in two phases - in the first one, known as the competition phase, only the teams that did not participate in the previous continental championship needs to play and in the second phase (the challange phase) the best ones of these teams play against the teams that did participate in the previous competition). In the third and the fourth years of the cycle these continental championships takes place (European championship, African championship, North American championship, South American championship, West Asian championship and the East Asian championship). The teams that perform the best in there advance to the world championship that completes the cycle in the fifth year. In the West Asian championship the teams from the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent and the Central Asia participate, while in the East Asian championship the teams from eastern Asia, southeast Asia and Oceania participate. Since the 9th cycle the 7th championship (Antarctic championship) is held as well, but due to low number and relative weakness of the teams playing there in order to qualify to the world championship the Antartic champion needs to play additional matches against one of the South American teams.
According to the current rules 4, 8, 16 or 32 teams might participate in each championship. Currently 32 teams participate in the world championship and 8 or 16 in the continental championships, depending on the continent (8 teams in the South American and the North American championships, 16 teams in the European, African, East Asian and West Asian championships). The only exception is the Antarctic championship where teams of all the Antarctic nations participate. Theoretically there can be 64 teams in one championship, but the proposals to increase the size of the world championship to 64 teams and the size of the European championship to 32 teams had met little support. In all the championships for the national teams the points are counted in the Battlegame style (loose-gain system).
The shade diagram is used in newspapers, magazines and other places to visually show the current standing in championship (or tournament) groups when the loose-gain system is used to count points. In a typical situation when groups consist of 4 teams each and each team plays a single match against another team (this is the way it is done in the national teams championships), a shade diagram for each group consists of 24 tiles. At the start diagram is partitioned into equal parts of different colours (or different shades of gray in case of black and white newspapers), each colour representing one of the teams. Then, depending on the results of matches, the titles are "repainted". After a landslide victory one of the tiles of the loosing team is repainted into the colour of winning team, and in case of decisive victory two tiles are repainted in this fashion. At the start each team gets as many tiles as is the maximum ammount of points possible to loose, therefore if the team ends up loosing every match decisively, in the diagram showing the final standings in the group there will not be any tiles painted in the team's colour. Tiles are not repainted in random way, but under a certain pattern and therefore it is always possible not only to know the ammount of points the team has at the moment (which is easy to determine by counting tiles painted in team's colour), but as well which team has won against which, where everything ended up in draw, which victories were landslide and which were decisive.
Actual meaning of a shade diagram is an abstract map that indicates territorial looses and gains of respective sides (as the Battlegame is meant to represent war).
List of the champions
The champions of the Battlegame:
Articles about particular championships
- 11th West Asian Battlegame Championship
- 11th East Asian Battlegame Championship
- 11th African Battlegame Championship
This page was created by Abdul-aziz.