Grubball is a popular sport played throughout Veth, and the national sport of Arangoth. Aside from a prohibition on magic and weaponry, there are few rules limiting what players may do to each other. Players compete wearing armor, and teams have healers on staff to attend to the inevitable player injuries. Due to the violent nature of the game, fatalities on the field are not unknown. The game's origins are obscure, but is thought to have been invented by Tollorian soldiers to amuse themselves.
Grubball is played on a level, circular field approximately 90 to 120 yards in diameter. Chalk circles mark the boundary of the field, along with the midcircle at the center of the field, and the home and away circles near the edges of the field.
A: Center Circle
B: Home's Circle
C: Away's Circle
D: Neutral Ground
E: Outer Circle (or Boundary Circle)
Rules of the Game
A Grubball team has thirteen players plus four reserves, for a total of 17. A team consists of the following positions:
Hinterplodders (3): Typically a team's fastest and most agile players, Hinterplodders score the majority of a team's points. On defensive plays, Hinterplodders often focus on intercepting passes or deflecting balls out of bounds rather than more physical methods of disrupting a play.
Midfieldsmen (4): Midfieldsmen are versatile players expected to assist the Hinterplodders on offense, or the Backfieldsmen on Defensive plays
Backfieldsmen (5) Backfieldsmen are the core of a team's defense on defensive plays, and often function as blockers for the ball carrier on offensive plays.
Forschbowler (1): A team's prime defensive position, the Forschbowler defends his or her team's circle from opposing players.
A game of Grubball is played in five Quintings of 15 minutes each. Time is kept with an hourglass that is turned over at the first tipoff, and runs continuously. In the event of a tied score at the end of the fifth Quinting, the teams will play an additional Quinting.
Each team's Hinterplodders take position in Midcircle. One from each team stands in the middle of the circle, about 3 feet apart from one another, with their two teammates behind them near the edge of Midcircle. The referee throws the ball into play between the opposing players. The Hinterplodders attempt to gain control of the ball or tip it into the hands of a teammate. The other players on the team are not allowed to enter Midcircle until one of the Hinterplodders from either team leaves Midcircle with ball in hand. While they remain within Midcircle, Hinterplodders may use any means necessary to gain control of the ball. The ball may touch the ground at any time so long as it remains within the Midcircle. If the ball leaves Midcircle and hits the ground, the play is dead and there is a new tipoff.
After one of the Hinterplodders establishes control of the ball and either leaves Midcircle or passes the ball successfully to one of his teammates outside Midcircle, the offensive and defensive teams for that play are set. Players may run with the ball, hand the ball to another player, or throw the ball to another player, but the ball may not touch the ground or go outside the Outer Circle. If either of these occurs or the defending team gains possession of the ball, the play is dead and there is a new tipoff. If the offensive team successfully moves the ball from Midcircle to their team's circle (labeled home circle and away circle above, respectively) and back to Midcircle, they score a point. A defensive player is awarded a Kill for successfully ending a play and forcing a new tipoff.
- There is no magic allowed during gameplay; the offending player is ejected from the game.
- If a team causes the death of an opposing player, they are charged with a Fatality and penalized a point.
- Players that instigate fights outside bounds of gameplay are ejected.
- Players involved in lewd behavior, especially that which can be seen from the stands, are ejected.
- Players suspected of intentionally holding the ball to stop gameplay are ejected.
Arangoth originally had a sixteen team league known as the Arangothian Grubball League, or AGL. After the team on Goat Island went bankrupt, the AGL team invited the team from Mysthaven on the Isles of Myst to join the league in 472 to preserve the number of teams. Several teams have been added to the league roster over the years. A season consists of 30 games in which each team plays each other twice, once at home and once away. Following the 30-game regular season is a postseason playoff. The top two teams play a 5-game series with the winner claiming the Season Championship and being awarded the trophy currently called the Arlok Cup. The winner of the AGL championship goes on to take part in the International Grubball Association, or IGA, playing teams from the surrounding countries.
- Alysiahorna (Leptatarna)
- Aran Keep (Arania)
- Bralk Lakrath (Transdariania)
- The Drachean Black Dragons (Transdariania)
- Galanor (Leptatarna)
- Gessihorna (Leptatarna)
- Tagrana Memorial (Hornath ul-Marfed)
- Mhernettla (Transdariania)
- Millabratel (Transdariania)
- MystHaven (Isles of Myst)
- Peraltok Valley (Leptatarna)
- Ruthmarna United (Ruthmarna)
- Sivriana (Arania)
- Sresar Vale United (Sresar Vale)
- Tagrana (Leptatarna)
- Tralazir (Leptatarna)
- Goat Island Creepers (Transdariania)
International Grubball Association
The International Grubball Association was formed when representatives from Tollor and Aslar met to establish a standard set of rules for the game to facilitate a match played between teams from their respective nations. As the popularity of the sport expanded beyond the Southlands and throughout Veth, the organization grew to encompass new member countries and host ever-expanding international tournaments. Each member nation is allowed to send one team to participate in an IGA competition. The participating teams are divided into Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest divisions, with divisional matches played in a host city in that area of the continent to lessen travel distances. Each team plays matches against other teams in their division, with the two best teams playing a three game series to determine the divisional champion. The two eastern and two western division champions play one another in a five game series, and the two final teams compete for the IGA championship in a seven game series.