Information for Players

Fig 1. The SpaceBall Pitch.

The SpaceBall pitch is shown in figure 1., above. It is divided into 5x3 regions, with a centre circle and goals at either end.

When a player moves into the red or blue goal and drops the ball, the team of that goal's colour receives a point. So if you are on the red team, you are trying to get the ball into the western goal, and if you are on the blue team, you are aiming for the eastern goal.

Sequence of Play
Here is a basic idea of how a game of SpaceBall progresses:

1. The players gather on the pitch, and take up their desired positions. The ball is placed on the centre circle.
2. The referee blows the whistle to start the game.
3. A player makes his/her way to their goal, and drops the ball.
4. The ball disappears (into a holding area) for 30 seconds.
5. The ball reappears at the centre circle, and play continues.
6. Eventually the referee blows the whistle again, and play stops.

The Ball
The ball used in SpaceBall is a ceramic composite sphere, containing an energy matrix.

One important point that must not be overlooked is that the inertial coefficient of the ball is very high, which means that the player carrying the ball cannot move around very quickly.

Android Players
The referee can add android players to either the red team or the blue team. This should be done before the game starts, unless a player is permitted to join while a game is in progress.

Games can be played exclusively between players, or players vs. androids, or any combination that the referee chooses.

Android players will typically grab the ball and run to their goal, without passing. Although they might have an advantage due to their lack of a need to type, in practice their reactions are slowed down to compensate.

SpaceBall Suits
A player must be wearing a SpaceBall suit in order to play SpaceBall. This is primarily for safety reasons, but also for video tracking (to aid the referee).

The colour of a SpaceBall suit reflects the team that the owner is currently playing for. The colour can be changed with the command 'makered suit' or 'makeblue suit' at any time, though the colour should not be changed during the course of a game.

Suits come in a variety of types, and generally the more expensive versions allow a player to move more easily (and quickly) around the pitch.

Ok, enough of this! How do you actually play SpaceBall?

When you walk onto the SpaceBall pitch, some special commands are activated. These are:

  t - tackles the nearest player with the ball
  k - kicks the ball (it will go in a random direction)
  g - gets (takes) the ball, if it is on the ground
  d - drop the ball
  p <playername> - passes the ball to that player (note that you cannot pass to bots)

Learn these commands well, for in the heat of a frantic SpaceBall game you will need to remember them in a split second!

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