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Mob Rules Soccer

It's a riot!
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Mob Rules Soccer is a game of soccer played on a large scale. It is played with a standard ball, on a standard field. There are 256 players (128 per side). Each player is assigned a label, randomly numbered from 1 to 256. The label is attached to each player's shorts. Each player wears two jerseys of contrasting color (black and white, or, blue and red, etc.). Players 1 to 128 form one team (white); players 129 to 256 form the other (black). Each player changes his/her jersey to match the appropriate team. Each team has a goalkeeper jersey of contrasting color. The goalkeeper is chosen at random at the beginning of each round, by a referee with a bullhorn. Drinking is not allowed on the pitch.

Play begins and continues as normal until one team scores. The team that was scored against is now OUT, and must leave the field. The scoring team now splits in half: the players with the higher numbers (65 to 128, or 193 to 256) change their jersey to the other color. These players take the other side of the field and play continues with 64 players per side. This attrition continues until eight goals have been scored, and there is one player left standing. This player is the winner, the champion, the King, and receives an elaborate crown as the prize.

Note that it is unlikely that the most skilled soccer player would win, but the winner would not be without skill.

Mob Rules Soccer can be played as a betting game, or to raise money for charity, or to raise money to replace the sod that would inevitably get destroyed.

xrayTed, Mar 22 2002

The rulebook http://www.amazon.c...102-7903266-8598527
[mrthingy, Mar 23 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

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       256 players on a normal-sized pitch would get a bit crowded. If you use a shrinking pitch, however, it'd work fine.
calum, Mar 22 2002

       ...then 128 - if not 128, then 64, etc. to get the game going to the point a ball is able to hit the net for first goal.
thumbwax, Mar 22 2002

       100 a side football? Baked in every UK primary school.
mcscotland, Mar 22 2002

       You should number the players 0-255.   

       Isn't it going to get mighty boring when you get down to 4 or 2 a side?
waugsqueke, Mar 22 2002

       a descendant of british bulldogs, perhaps... <nostalgia>
jameStm, Mar 22 2002

       //Isn't it going to get mighty boring when you get down to 4 or 2 a side?

and far too tiring - I remember attempting to play 2-a-side football when I was seven. On a full size pitch.
mcscotland, Mar 22 2002

       Actually the game would play more quickly as you dwindled the numbers. At 4 or 2 a side it would only take one break away and they only need to score once.   

       It doesn't sound like much of a riot though, not unless you allow more contact than regular football/soccer. An offical (or a dozen officials) could control all the penalties. They would be stopping the game every few seconds. Let ANYTHING go, with the exception of weapons, and this might be entertaining, especialy with 256 people. Or better yet, with weapons, call it (new idea coming)
dag, Mar 22 2002

       That would be baked anyway [dag] by my old school. We used to play a game called 'Hacksies' which was basically just as you described except without the referee. The only real 'rule' was that the violence all had to take place within the approximate vicinty of the ball.
stupop, Mar 22 2002

       Remember, [waugsqueke], that you need only score one goal before the teams change. The way I envision it, it would take the longest at the maximum number of players. The play would become mired up and chaotically move around the field. Scoring would be accomplished by Brownian motion. Some people may not even touch the ball before being eliminated. The length of time between goals would decrease with each successive goal. At the two-a-side and one-a-side levels, I would anticipate the goals to be only minutes apart, due to the large field, and the fact that the remaining players have been at it for some time.

       Numbering the players 0-255 seems more natural, but then someone would have to be 0.
xrayTed, Mar 22 2002

       Aberdeen FC have a player numbered 0.
mcscotland, Mar 22 2002

       "Hi. You know me. I've been a Professional Mob Soccer player for 4 years. And I swear to you, one of these days, I WILL get to touch that ball."
RayfordSteele, Mar 22 2002

       I'm not that big a football fan, but it seems that competent goalkeepers would really drag this game out. Why not put the lowest number on each side in goal, or let each side choose their keeper? (Of course, when it gets down to one-on-one you either have to import goalies or resort to penalty kicks.)
bookworm, Mar 23 2002

       Now I'm amused - the idea of a goalie trying to organize his defence for a corner with 250-odd players in the 18 yard box.
mcscotland, Mar 23 2002

       Thanks, bookworm. I like the idea where the lowest number on each side plays goal. This way, the goalkeeper is chosen randomly, and avoids having 128 people trying to decide on a single person.

       It would be amusing to see a "wall" of 127 defenders crushed into the 18-yard box on a corner kick. A well placed "banana kick" would skip across their heads and make a devastating shot.
xrayTed, Mar 23 2002

       On further thought, there's a problem with just taking the lowest number. Numbers 1 and 129 will spend the entire match in goal, and all even-numbered players will never be goalies. Better to choose randomly from among the players at the start of each round (which, now that I reread it, may have been your original idea; I read it as having two specialist goalies).
bookworm, Mar 25 2002

       Players 1 and 129 would initially be in goal. If the 'lower' team (1-128) wins, players 1 and 65 would play goal for the next round. If the upper team (129-256) wins, then players 129 and 193 would play goal for the next round. Yes, the odd-numbered players would always play goal. Only the lower half team keeps the same goalkeeper.

       These details are moot, however, because due to the large amount of confusion, someone (the referee) would have to coordinate everything with a bullhorn, or loudspeaker, anyway. The chances of any scheme, regardless of how simple, or well defined, becoming entirely fucked up is in direct proportion to the number of people attempting to implement said scheme.

       It would be easier for the referee to randomly select a goalkeeper from the remaining players (now incorporated into the main idea).
xrayTed, Mar 25 2002

       // (Of course, when it gets down to one-on-one you either have to import goalies or resort to penalty kicks.) //   

       Get rid of the goalkeeper entirely. Use a smaller net and make the regular players defend it as well as they can without hands.
BigBrother, Mar 25 2002

       I'd like to see this theory applied to other sports. 256 people playing the 18th at Augusta anyone?
Cunninglinguist, Jul 31 2004

       This is a thoroughly awesome idea and I'm giving you a warm, fluffy, buttery croissant.   

       BTW, I agree with [BigBrother] that goaltenders should be abolished entirely. Or imported goaltenders could play once teams get to a small number.
disbomber, Apr 04 2005

       256 person twister anyone?
hidden truths, Apr 04 2005


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