Redefining “Play Area” & “Knocked-Out” in Beyblade Stadiums (And How This Changes The Game)

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Overview

  1. Introduction
  2. What is the “correct” way to play Beyblade?
  3. Playing Casually Versus Competitively
  4. How Different Beyblade Stadiums Affect Our Perception of Being “Knocked-Out”
  5. The 2 Key Questions We Should Consider
  6. Defining “Play Area” and Re-Defining “Knocked-Out”
  7. How does this change Beyblade?

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Introduction

This article originally began as a new response to a thread on worldbeyblade.org titled “Consideration for rules update – Knockouts” by member Mr. Palazzo.

The debate about the WBO’s existing ruling on knock-outs has been ongoing for sometime, and I previously mentioned it in my “What is the best way to play Beyblade?” article late last year.

In writing this response, it evolved into a larger conversation about:

  1. Whether there is “right” or “wrong” ways to play Beyblade.
  2. Why the WBO uses its own ruleset which differs in some ways from the WBBA.
  3. What it means to play competitively versus playing for fun.
  4. Defining what the “play area” actually is in Beyblade.
  5. Proposing a redefinition what “knocked-out” means in Beyblade.

My ultimate goal however was to advance this discussion further and try to take concrete action towards clarifying precisely what I feel the World Beyblade Organization’s rules should look like from now on with regards to the definition of the “play area” and “knocked-out”.

I welcome any feedback here on BeyBase or on the WBO!

You can find my thoughts on these subjects below:


What is the “correct” way to play Beyblade?

#NeverForget.. That this game is being played incorrectly in WBO tournaments. I know it seems odd since there aren’t going to be gatherings for a while, but why return to them with the flawed rules in a meta that’s starting to lean really into attack? Attack was already doing well but the escalation is only rising. – Mr. Palazzo

I’m still very much on Mr. Palazzo’s side when it comes to wanting to remove the ability for a “wall bounce” to qualify as a KO.

However, I have to disagree with the stance towards it he’s outlined here and in some other posts.

The game is not being “played incorrectly”, with “flawed rules”, or in a “fundamentally wrong way”. It’s being played the way we want it to be played.

Does that make it objectively right? Absolutely not.

But is it valid? Yes.

This doesn’t mean it can’t be improved or that individuals cannot disagree with certain aspects of our framework, however.

The Constant Evolution of the Game, Rules, and Our Experience

The game is constantly evolving, as I alluded to here with regards to how the KO ruling in debate came to be.

As is evident by our constant updates to the rules, this evolution is something we are always monitoring and making changes to accommodate for based on new releases, player feedback, organizer feedback, and our continued accumulation of experience with the game on a competitive level.

To state as a matter of fact that the way things are is “incorrect” is untrue and unfair to the reality that there are innumerable ways to play Beyblade. Each influenced by the context within which they exist.

People play a certain way with their friends, the WBO plays another way, the WBBA another, and another group of friends somewhere else probably plays differently too.

There is nothing “incorrect” about any of these methods. In fact, it’s part of what makes Beyblade great! People can play however they’d like.

Playing in different contexts with different equipment or rulesets changes how the game can be interpreted.

man and child launching beyblades into yellow stadium

What the WBO’s Framework Enables

That being said, the WBO imposes a specific framework in order to:

  1. Make it possible to fairly compare players that are geographically scattered.
  2. Make it possible to evaluate your personal performance over time.
  3. Make it possible to evaluate the strength of combinations with a greater level of accuracy due to the controlled and consistent ruleset they play within.
  4. Make it possible to talk with other players in the global community on a mutually understood and consistent playing field.

Players who participate in WBO events value and accept this because it helps to make the game more meaningful on each of these levels.

I appreciate Mr. Palazzo’s passion for this subject and am glad he brought this back up, but I do believe that we need to be careful with how we frame our argument here.

The wall bounce KO ruling is fine to take issue with and debate–in fact, I invite such debate because it pushes us all to be better–but to suggest that it is inherently incorrect on some fundamental level is simply untrue.

While I disagree with others who don’t feel we should adjust this specific ruling, it is a complex issue and I can understand and respect why they may feel that way.

JesseObre and 1234beyblade playing Beyblade at a tournament


Playing Casually Versus Competitively

You know what feels straight up stupid for a game about nothing except spinning tops? Having to say a match is over while two tops are still aggressively spinning on the arena, then having to spend 1-3 minutes looking at a camera to see who was got out. Tournaments already go on for a while, to artificially inflate the time further with the need to review replay after replay is insane. I prefer an honest game, not a game that’s over in 3 seconds followed by a 2 minute review of footage because both beys went flying in different directions. Ludicrous how often this happens.

It actually comes off feeling as if people don’t like watching tops spin, instead being only hyper focused on the idea of scoring points, to the extent of actively hurting the state of game play. – Mr. Palazzo

I completely understand and empathize with much of what Mr. Palazzo is saying here.

But to play devils’ advocate: the values he’s expressed here reflect a specific view of how someone can interpret what makes the game meaningful to them.

What Rouzuke said holds truth:

Not really sure if I did understand your sentiments, but that would only be applicable if you’re playing casual. It’s not that people don’t want to see tops spin, but if that is what is already expected to happen (spinning tops), then people in a competitive environment, namely “tournaments”, will more or less focus on the outcome/points instead of the whole process of tops battling each other.

That’s what I think, not trying to be rude or what. – Rouzuke


When you play something competitive, the gameplay itself takes on a form which is entirely different than casual play.

Gameplay as a Means to an End

The gameplay in effect becomes a means to an end (winning a match/tournament) and less about playing or observing purely for “fun”. If you are doing the latter, of course watching the Beyblades in the stadium for a longer period of time would be more “fun” in that traditional sense of the word.

Competitive players find the game “fun”, but they also find being competitive “fun”. And being competitive means testing, optimization, research, and strict adherence of the shared framework of rules they are playing in with their opponent(s).

Getting Things Right is What Matters

The length of the match or lengths required to come to an accurate result do not matter; getting things right is what matters. Accepting nothing less than an accurate result from our judges is the most honest part of the game.

The act of playing in a competitive event means you accept to be bound by whatever tenets it is guided by at that point in time. As such, your goal becomes to achieve the fundamental end goal of the game (winning) within what that framework allows.

Players can’t ultimately feel “cheated” out of anything when the rules are applied as written or reasonably interpreted where the rules allow for judge discretion.

Whether that “hurts” the gameplay or improves it depends on what you want out of the game.

Top down view of Yami judging match between Zankye and King Loofa at WBO Beyblade Tournament in Los Angeles, Beyblade West

Length of Matches & Difficulty of Judging Does Matter Too

Does this mean that concerns such as length of matches and difficulty of judging shouldn’t be considered? Definitely not. They matter a lot because they impact the accuracy of those results, the logistics of planning an event, and the enjoyment of spectators.

That’s why this is a discussion worth having. And similar to many WBO members, it’s exactly this part of it that I’ve been trying to build awareness for among the community.

From a purely competitive standpoint, however, none of these things matter. And that’s why I can understand from that perspective, there could be opposition to changing this rule.

The reality is that both need to be balanced carefully when we think about how to adjust our competitive framework.


How Different Beyblade Stadiums Affect Our Perception of Being “Knocked-Out”

Competitive players hold a view of the game which includes a deep understanding of how the game should work on a fundamental level. When the game deviates from that understanding, issues begin to arise for them.

In the case of Beyblade, I think it is fair to say that a fundamental part of the game is the ability for them to be knocked-out of the stadium and for it to count as a win for the player who knocked-out their opponent.

line up of white and red burst beystadium standard types on foam mats at tournament

Stadium Characteristics

However, this fundamental part can also be modified depending on the stadium it is played in. There are stadiums with:

  1. Pockets (ex. Big BeyStadium)
  2. No pockets (ex. Super Vortex Stadium)
  3. Open exits (ex. MFB Attack Type Stadium)
  4. Exits with a cover (ex. Burst BeyStadium Standard Type)
  5. Flat areas outside exits or pockets (ex. MFB Balance Type Stadium, Burst Standard Type Stadium Cover)

Each of these has the potential to alter our understanding of this fundamental component of Beyblade.

I’m of the opinion that our understanding should adapt to whatever the environment we’re playing in is. In this case, the Burst BeyStadium Standard Type.

Considering its design, I know many agree that Beyblades bouncing off the back wall and landing back inside the central play area should still be considered in play. The WBBA treats it this way too.

beyblade burst g3 tournament area setup aerial view

Evaluating TAKARA-TOMY’s Intention

That being said, I’d like to back track a bit to the point I was making earlier about the innumerable number of ways Beyblade can be played.

Mr. Palazzo alluded to earlier how the “current rules of intended play are backwards”.

If we think about intention, I would agree that as things currently stand with TAKARA-TOMY and the WBBA, our rules do diverge from theirs on this issue.

But, TAKARA-TOMY is also not incapable of adjusting their intentions to suit their needs in a particular moment or context.

For example, during the 2012 World Championships, the pockets in Hasbro’s Striker Stadium that was used for the preliminary rounds were treated as knock-out areas. Typically, Beyblades entering and remaining in the pockets were treated as in-play until they stopped spinning.

This type of change is one which fundamentally changed how the game could be played in those stadiums.

I think this illustrates that we shouldn’t always be beholden to what TAKARA-TOMY is doing.

We should absolutely look at and respect them, but ultimately we are a separate entity existing under entirely different circumstances with different values, so we should make the decisions which are optimized to ourselves first and foremost.


The 2 Key Questions We Should Consider

The same thing applies to our current ruling for wall bounces in the Burst Standard Type stadium.

Is it wrong? Is it right? The argument can be made either way. It depends on two things:

  1. What do we value from a competitive perspective?
  2. What do we value from an event organizing perspective?


So, let’s dive into both of these questions:

1. What do we value from a competitive perspective?

It’s fair to say that from this perspective we value a balanced representation across all types of Beyblades (Attack, Defense, Stamina, and everything in between) in the metagame. The game is better when no single type is dominant.

As such, when considering a change to our knock-out rules, we have to ask ourselves: will the proposed change upset our goal of maintaining this balance?

In some ways it does, but in others it doesn’t.

If you add the ability for Beyblades to remain in-play after having exited the “play area” (regardless of the stadium) and returning under certain conditions, this inherently reduces the viability of attack types. You’re creating a method to re-enter the play area after it has been knocked-out, which is typically the primary win condition for an attack type.

However, allowing a Beyblade to re-enter the play area in this manner does introduce the possibility of it scoring a separation/Burst instead, which is more valuable points-wise in some formats.

That said, allowing for this does also benefit attack types in the sense that they can remain in-play even if they self-KO and bounce back in, for instance. This is currently allowed in our rules when a Beyblade self-KOs prior to contact with the opponent, but allowing it under any circumstances would boost this benefit further.

With this in mind it becomes clear that the value of being knocked-out depends entirely on the context. If you’re knocking out your opponent, it’s valuable. If you’re knocking out yourself, it’s negative.

2. What do we value from an event organizing perspective?

From this perspective, the piece which we value that is relevant to this discussion is quite simple. Like I said before: getting things right is what matters.

Intertwined with this is: what level of difficulty do we find acceptable when it comes to what we expect of judges at our events?

I would say we want the difficulty to be as low as possible without compromising the competitive integrity of the game.

Two judges evaluate footage on phone after conclusion of Beyblade battle

To me, any ruling which can necessitate the need for video review quite frequently is not a good one. While things like close opposite spin stamina match-ups may be something unavoidable in the game, split-second moments resulting in a Beyblade being knocked into a pocket and bouncing back in counting as a KO are something we should avoid for the sake of making the game easier to judge and easier to understand for everyone.

Competitive players will always want the game to be highly competitive, but my feeling is that while changing the way we rule knock-outs like this does have a detrimental effect in some respects on attack types, we also need to consider the fact that it is us who gets to define what we want the game to be in the first place.

We get to define exactly what the competition should be.

And I agree with what Shindog said a while ago:

The rules should allow the best game to be played, but being officiated properly is part of that. – Shindog

There’s innumerable ways to play Beyblade and making this change might disappoint some, but considering all factors associated with both the game and who we are as a community, it’s probably for the best to change it now.

I believe most people agree with me too, if the support garnered in terms of likes from WBO Organizers on posts like this one that I made is any indication.


Defining “Play Area” and Re-Defining “Knocked-Out”

In order to move this discussion forward, I have carefully composed a brand new definition for what the “play area” is and an updated definition for “knocked-out”.

The updated “knocked-out” definition takes this new play area definition into consideration and assumes that we are removing the ruling which considers a Beyblade KOed immediately after it exits the play area.

I’d also like to note that these rules were written to be universal. If approved, they would be used in all rulebooks. I feel that regardless of the format being played, our stance on what the “play area” and “knocked-out” are should be consistent.

Stadiums may differ in their construction, but our fundamental philosophy behind these two key pieces of the game should be consistent.

Existing “Knocked-Out” Definitions

For reference, here is the existing definitions of “knocked-out”:

Knocked-Out Existing Definition – BST/BSC

A Beyblade is knocked-out when it exits the play area. Beyblades stuck on an element of a stadium are still considered in-play.

Beyblades that bounce back into the stadium after exiting the play area are still considered knocked-out. However, if a Beyblade exits the play area and bounces back in before touching the opposing Beyblade in any fashion, the round will continue.

Knocked-Out Existing Definition – MFB/MFL

A Beyblade is knocked-out when it exits the play area. Beyblades stuck on an element of a stadium are still considered in-play.

Beyblades that bounce back into the stadium after exiting the play area are still considered knocked-out. However specifically, if in the Burst BeyStadium Standard type a Beyblade exits the play area and bounces back in before touching the opposing Beyblade in any fashion, the round will continue.

Knocked-Out Existing Definition – PLA/HMS/ZRG

A Beyblade is knocked-out when it exits the play area and cannot return. Beyblades stuck on an element of a stadium are still considered in-play.

Universal Rules 8 – In and Out of Play Clarifications

And for some historical context, here is the relevant rulings regarding “knocked-out” from our discontinued “Universal Rulebook” Release 8.

This is one of the rulebooks from just before the implementation of our Google Docs-based rulebooks in late 2016 that currently exist:

When is a Beyblade considered knocked-out?
A Beyblade is considered out of play once it exits the play area, not when it touches the floor/ground outside of the BeyStadium. The moment a Beyblade exits the play area it is considered out of play.

A Beyblade exits the play area, but is still sitting on the edge of the BeyStadium.
Some BeyStadiums have design features outside of the playing area that Beyblades can become trapped in. If a Beyblade is knocked past the edge where it can feasibly return to the playing area of the BeyStadium, it is considered out of play and the round ends. However, if it continues to spin in an area where it can still re-enter the playing area, it is in-play. It must therefore immediately bounce back into the stadium, otherwise it is deemed out of play.

New Proposed Definitions of “Play Area” and “Knocked-Out”

Considering all of this, here are my new proposed definitions:

Play Area Definition

The play area is divided into two distinct areas:

Primary Play Area
The Primary Play Area is the space in the central area of a BeyStadium before the point at which any exits, pockets, walls, or stadium cover openings begin (if they exist).

Extended Play Area
The play area can be extended under specific circumstances:

Some BeyStadiums have design features–such as pockets–outside of the centralized primary play area that Beyblades can become trapped in or on permanently or temporarily.

These areas may only be considered as part of the play area if the Beyblade is spinning in or on them and can feasibly return to the Primary Play Area quickly.

Knocked-Out Definition

A Beyblade is knocked-out when after being launched:

  1. It does not enter play area and cannot enter OR
  2. It exits the play area while spinning and cannot return OR
  3. It stops spinning outside the Primary Play Area.

A Beyblade “cannot enter” or “cannot return” and is therefore considered knocked-out when:

It reaches a spot outside the Extended Play Area where it cannot feasibly return to the central Primary Play Area quickly and continue spinning.

However, if it continues to spin in the Extended Play Area where it can still feasibly re-enter the Primary Play Area quickly, it remains in-play.

I invite everyone to please scrutinize this as carefully as possible.

Keep in mind that the goal is to craft definitions which are comprehensive enough to cover any format and any stadium that Beyblade can be played in while also being as concise as possible.

This was extremely difficult to devise, but I think the outcome covers any possible situation …


How does this change Beyblade?

While the above definition is comprehensive, it was done in a broad way. So, you may be wondering: what would this proposal actually mean for the game?

Sample Situations Based on New Definitions

Based on these definitions, I’ll spell out a few specific situations which are permitted by them:

Sample 1: Burst BeyStadium Standard Type

If a Beyblade enters the pocket, gets stuck in it without touching the floor outside the stadium (as is possible with large Layers like Imperial), and stops spinning, it will be considered knocked-out. This is because it has stopped spinning outside the primary play area and cannot feasibly return to it while spinning anymore.

Sample 2: Burst BeyStadium Standard Type

If a Beyblade enters the pocket while spinning, the match will continue until its stops spinning or another win condition is achieved (whether that be it self-bursting, the opponent self-KOing, the opponent stopping spinning first, etc). This is because while it is spinning in the pocket, it can still feasibly return to the central primary play area.

Sample 3: Burst BeyStadium Standard Type

If a Beyblade is launched, hits the top of the stadium cover and then falls off outside of it, it will be considered knocked-out because it feasibly “cannot return” to the central primary play area.

Sample 4: Burst BeyStadium Standard Type

If a Beyblade is launched, catches the rim of the stadium cover, and spins around it, the round continues. The round will then continue further if it falls into the primary play area or it will end and be considered “knocked-out” if it shoots itself to an area outside of the stadium cover entirely.

The stadium cover qualifies as part of the “extended play area”, but only in circumstances where there is still a chance for the Beyblade to feasibly enter/return to the primary play area.

Sample 5: BB-14 Balance Type Stadium (MFB)

If a Beyblade is spinning on the flat area outside the primary play area, it would be considered in-play because it can still feasibly re-enter the play area.

Sample 6: Any Stadium With Pockets (ex. Hasbro’s Beyblade Burst Triangle Beystadium)

If a Beyblade enters it and continues to spin, the judge will need to make the determination as to whether the Beyblade can feasibly return to the primary play area or not. If the Beyblade is bouncing around erratically in the pocket and seems like it might jump out, then it would still be considered in-play.

If it is spinning calmly in the pocket, it would be considered “knocked-out” based on the second point in the knocked-out definition: “It exits the play area while spinning and cannot return”.

Sample 7: BB-94 Tornado BeyStadium (MFB)

Beyblades can be launched from the yellow ramps outside of the primary play area. Because any Beyblade spinning here can feasibly enter or return to the primary play area, they are still considered to be in-play. If they are not spinning on the yellow ramps however, it would be considered a knock-out.

My proposed definitions effectively allow for the opportunity to extend the play area under specific circumstances in order to allow battles to continue when it seems possible that the Beyblade(s) which have exited the primary play area in the centre of the stadium can return to it while spinning.

For judges, it will be easier to make the call of “knock-out” this way. Knock-outs effectively become something which need to be final. Battles will not end until a Beyblade has no hope to continue spinning in the primary play area (whether that be due to being knocked-out or bursting).

In this sense, this change would make each win condition (outspin, knock-out, burst/separation) require finality, creating a more consistent theme competitively. If you want to win, you need to do something your opponent cannot possibly return from.


How would this change affect WBO Burst Format Deck Matches?

The one specific concern I would like to address is how this change would affect Deck Format in WBO Burst Format, where the Burst BeyStadium Standard Type is used and we recently updated KOs to be worth 1pt instead of 2pts.

There are some who feel that we can’t have both 1pt KOs and the removal of the ruling which considers Beyblades bouncing back into the stadium to already be considered KOed.

I’m not sure how exactly to convince those who feel this way otherwise. The fact of the matter is that yes, changing the rule to what I’ve proposed will change the game. It’s a conscious choice that will have an effect on attack types.

As I’ve said in the past, “the removal of this rule doesn’t negatively impact attack types as much as you might think it would given the state they are in right now with Layers like Judgment and Zwei available”.

The argument could be made to trying out this change in some test WBO events and I am open to that if it’s what the majority wants, but based on my experience at NO SLEEP TILL BEYBLADE where we played using WBBA’s 3on3 Battle Format (and 1pt KOs with no bounce back ruling), attack was still great.

My recent experience in Japan also has reinforced this opinion as well. Attack was just as successful for me and others there as it was at the experimental NO SLEEP TILL BEYBLADE event.

There may be some changes to how competitive players approach the game as a result of this change, but I do not believe this is inherently a bad thing. The important thing is that this change doesn’t significantly upset the balanced representation we would ideally like to see throughout the game of each main type of combination.

The overall power of attack types has shifted dramatically since September 2017 when our knock-out definition was last updated, so I am confident that now is the right time to be making this change.

In the end, as with any rule change, we are also capable of changing down the road if it proves to have been or to become detrimental.

What do you think? Comment below!

I’d love hear what you guys think of my proposed new definition for “play area” and “knocked-out” for World Beyblade Organization tournaments. Please scrutinize it carefully! I’d love if we can come to an agreement on a universal set of descriptions for these concepts that can be applied to any Beyblade format in existence.

Comment below and let me know!

If you enjoyed reading this article, please also feel free to share it with any of your friends who are into playing Beyblade competitively or judging matches at tournaments.

I've been playing Beyblade since 2002 and have been worldbeyblade.org staff–the largest Beyblade website in the world with over 100,000 members–since 2009. I have won over 60 tournaments and have hosted over 100 as an organizer over the past decade. I enjoy writing about Beyblade as a competitive hobby and with this blog aim to help players gain a deeper understanding of the game and improve their performance in tournaments!

23 thoughts on “Redefining “Play Area” & “Knocked-Out” in Beyblade Stadiums (And How This Changes The Game)

  1. I think this new ruling seems very well thought out and considerate. I am of the opinion that allowing bounce backs will be a huge win for organizers/judges while still allowing attack types to shine. I’d be happy to test the format at upcoming events once COVID-19 subsides. This seems like a great update to the WBO rules.

    1. Thanks, SupaDav03! That’s the goal; make the game easier to judge/spectate while still allowing not only attack types, but all types to be effective.

  2. This obviously took a lot of thought and time. Thank you very much for a very thorough write up. I read through this several times and I think I can appreciate just how many situations you considered. I did have the following questions.

    1) A Beyblade goes into the pocket while still spinning, with a chance to return, and bursts in the pocket. Would this be a burst (2pts) or a KO (1pt)?

    2) Do you see a potential problem with making the call once the Beyblade in the pocket has completed stopped spinning or bursted? What I mean by this is the call for the round will be made based on if the Beyblade indeed returns to the play area and continue to spin, stays in the pocket, or burst. If the opponent’s Beyblade stop spinning in the play area while the pocketed Beyblade is still spinning in the pocket with a chance to return, can we just wait and see if it does indeed return? If it does, the pocketed beyblade wins by OS. If it doesn’t the pocketed Beyblade loses by KO, even if it technically OSed the opponent’s Beyblade while in the pocket.
    In the situation where the opponent’s Beyblade also enters a pocket, but a bit later, we would still wait to see if the Beyblade that entered the pocket 1st can indeed return to the play area. If the Beyblade that was pocketed 1st returns and continues to spin then it wins by KO and if it doesn’t it would lose by KO. Same principles would apply to bursts.

    I guess what I am saying is could we determine the “feasibility” of returning simply by waiting to see if the return actually happens? Do you see a potential problem with this approach?

    I hope the 2 questions makes sense and I hope you didn’t actually already answer them with the new definitions (and I just failed to understand).

    1. You’re welcome! Thank you for reading and for the questions. It’s a complicated issue and I tried to consider everything.

      To answer your questions:

      1. In my mind it should be a knock-out because the burst wasn’t inflicted directly by the opposing Beyblade.

      But I can see how the rules currently are vague with regards to this. It might be a good idea for us to clarify this point as well.

      To me, bursts should only be considered as such when they occur directly after being hit by the opposing Beyblade. I think this is how everyone has always ruled it (and it’s how I’ve seen it ruled in Japan), but looking at the rulebook now it could be made more explicit in our Gameplay Appendix.

      2. Good question. While my proposed definition does allow for Beyblades to exit the Primary Play Area, return, and continue the match, my intention was more so that this aspect should only be considered when it seems truly feasible for it to return quickly. Maybe I should add the word “quickly” in there somewhere.

      I considered placing a precise time limit on this (like 2-5 seconds), but that seemed unrealistic to enforce. At the end of the day, we do need to place trust in judges to … judge in difficult scenarios.

      “Feasible” really depends on the circumstances. Circumstances meaning the stadium and Beyblades in use.

      For example, if a Beyblade is stuck in a pocket while spinning and their opponent is a stationary stamina type spinning in the middle of the stadium … as a judge I would make the judgment call to say after a few seconds that there is no feasible way for the Beyblade in the pocket to return.

      But if the opposing Beyblade is an attack type and has a chance of entering the same pocket and knocking the Beyblade currently in the pocket back into the Primary Play Area, I would allow the battle to continue briefly until I could safely conclude that there is no feasible scenario remaining in which the Beyblade in the pocket could return to the Primary Play Area.

      We could wait and see as you’ve suggested, but in my mind it seems strange for a battle to continue for an extended period while a Beyblade is spinning in the Extended Play Area.

      The “Extended Play Area” should be seen more as a privilege than anything else.

      I’ve called the central area of a stadium the “Primary Play Area” because all battles should primarily take place in and be decided by things happening inside of it.

      In my proposed definition, there can be situations where a Beyblade wins while spinning in the Extended Play Area, but it would be more of an exception than the rule or something we would want to encourage.

      If we allowed battles to continue indefinitely until their conclusion with Beyblades spinning in the Extended Play Area, strategies could emerge in some stadiums that would reward players for launching their stamina type into them and hoping their attack type-wielding opponent self-KOs and stops spinning before they do. I don’t think this would be common, but the point remains that gameplay should be encouraged to occur for the most part in the Primary Play Area.

  3. Thank you for the quick reply. I definitely don’t need to see deliberate launches into an extended play area more than 3 times. I am certain the novelty will wear out and that isn’t a fun way to play this game, at least to me. I do think adding a word like “quickly” is a good idea and I think

    I do think I had trouble with clearly expressing my self. I was trying to present the extended play area as a “penalty zone”. To me, once you are in the extended play area, you can only lose or come back to continue for a chance to win. Win conditions would not exist in the “penalty zone.” For example, in order to OS your opponent, once you have entered a pocket, you have to come out of the pocket to do so. Same for Burst and KO. Does that make sense? This is why I was thinking we can just wait. And in this manner a player would be taking a bigger risk by directly launching into an extended play area in my opinion. I apologize if this is simply redundant. I may be having reading comprehension problems as well. Thinking about this does make my head spin a little.

    1. Yeah, I didn’t mean to suggest that it would happen frequently … just that such a strategy could be possible (and inherently encouraged) if we allow battles to simply become “wait and see” with regards to Beyblades having entered the Extended Play Area with no suggestion of a time limit on how long they can be there.

      As I talked about in this article, some competitive players find “fun” in being competitive; they will do what the game rules permit in order to gain an edge if possible.

      There’s nothing wrong with a player doing what is permitted because it is their responsibility to try and win the game. But as the arbiters of what Organized Play should look like for the WBO, I think it’s fair to say we want to avoid scenarios where this sort of strategy has any viability or is really even a consideration.

      I’m not sure I would characterize the Extended Play Area as a “penalty zone”, but it certainly means you are in significant danger of losing. It’s a limited privilege to exist spinning in the Extended Play Area and still be considered in-play by a judge.

      As result, the only type of situation I see this allowing for a Beyblade to still win while spinning in the Extended Play Area is something like the following:

      A Beyblade has entered a pocket while spinning and is bouncing around enough for the judge to feel it has a chance of re-entering. During this brief period, if the opposing Beyblade enters another pocket and stops spinning first, the Beyblade that had first entered a pocket would win by KO. In reality, this is the sort of thing that would happen in a matter of seconds … almost like a double-KO.

      I’m fine with this because this sort of situation is not something anyone could really exploit intentionally. It’s just something that can potentially happen.

      If we say that Beyblades absolutely have to re-enter the Primary Play Area in order to achieve a win condition, it means that situations where both Beyblades enter the Extended Play Area while spinning (ex. In the same or different pockets), it would automatically become a tie if neither return.

      I think we want to avoid ties whenever possible. If in the above scenario one Beyblade spins longer than the other, my feeling is that it should still win regardless of the fact that it (and the opponent) were in the Extended Play Area. In my mind, anything should technically be possible in the Extended Play Area (OS, KO, Burst/Separation) … it’s why I called it “extended”. It extends the boundaries of play entirely.

      When a Beyblade stops spinning or is Bursted, I think the battle should end basically immediately and the opponent should win.

      With my proposed definition (which I have updated to mention “quickly”), judges would be permitted to wait and see if the Beyblade in question quickly returns or not in a situation where only one Beyblade is in the Extended Play Area. But the definition does not (and in my opinion, should not) mandate that win conditions cannot ever occur directly in the Extended Play Area given the possibility for two Beyblades to exist simultaneously within it.

      This stuff certainly makes my head spin too! But hopefully that makes sense.

  4. Hey, newish player in an area without any WBO events, but we’ve done some competitive fun events for my son and his friends and I’ve referred to your standard as a guideline. I think unless there was some serious meta breaking issues, KISS. We adopted what made sense to the kids naturally, making it fun for them so they’d like to come back. This rule change seems like a good move.

    With regards to Beys which continue to spin in the extended play area (I like the extended play area definition, btw) what feels fair is if the bey enters the pocket and somehow manages to get back in due to the force of entry while continuing to spin, then it’s good. OTOH, once it has *settled on the surface* *outside of the arena* under the pocket, it is out whether it continues to spin or not. I think it’s important to clarify settling on the surface, outside of the extended play area, because sometimes a bigger layer (like Imperial) will spin for a second or two inside the pocket (still supported by the stadium) then blast itself back in, which still seems like an exciting, legal play (Think Monty Python – “I’m not dead yet!”).

    Kelly (aka RustyWheelz)

    1. Hi Kelly, thanks for your feedback!

      I hope you’re able to have WBO events in your area someday. If you ever have any questions about it, feel free to message one of our staff members or myself and we’d be happy to give any advice or pointers. We always want to see more communities being created!

      Your point about when a Beyblade has “settled on the surface outside of the arena” is a good one.

      The Extended Play Area definition I’ve proposed defines it in relation to the “design features” of a BeyStadium. To me, this implies that in all cases, for Beyblades to be considered to be in this “Extended Play Area”, they need to be in contact with one of these design features.

      If a Beyblade is completely separated from the BeyStadium outside of its perimeter, it obviously would be considered knocked-out because there is no feasible way for it to return.

      Conversely, if a Beyblade is in the Extended Play Area directly above the stadium (ex. directly above the stadium cover entrance of the Burst BeyStadium Standard Type), it could still be considered in-play because it can feasibly return to the Primary Play Area (because gravity lol).

      If a Beyblade is spinning on the surface “under” the pocket in something like the Burst BeyStadium Standard Type, in my opinion this should still be considered in-play briefly if parts of the Beyblade are still in contact with the inside of the BeyStadium. If it is not, it would be considered to be outside the Extended Play Area and knocked-out.

      And if something is spinning in that matter (to a point where it’s fair to say it is “settled”) within the Extended Play Area, then it would be ruled as knocked-out because it would become clear there was no chance for it to feasibly return to the Primary Play Area. You can’t exist in the Extended Play Area indefinitely even if you are spinning.

      It’s also important to consider Zero-G Format when thinking about this rule. In that format, the stadiums used create scenarios where it would be relatively easy to judge that a particular Beyblade has “settled on the surface outside of the arena” because of how violently the stadiums can sway. But that same sway can also very quickly cause the exit the Beyblade exists within to catch the Beyblade again and bring it back into the BeyStadium.

      We could say “settled” only comes into effect after a certain number of seconds have passed, but I think that’s too complicated and hard to enforce accurately.

      In stadiums like the Burst BeyStadium Standard Type, I think we should allow for the possibility of Beyblades spinning while touching the ground under the pockets as long as they still can feasibly and quickly return in the opinion of the judge.

  5. Quite a comprehensive and detailed explanation of the changes in WBO ruling regarding knock-outs and the effect of the changes in all three possible win-conditions in Beyblade so far (KO, Spin finish, Burst).

    I have read Shindog and SupaDav03’s respective feedbacks on this topic, and coming from a place where only WBBA rules have been implemented (player-initiated and mall-organized tournaments), it does provide greater clarity on how WBO tries to balance out each Beyblade type in relation to the pre-existing win-conditions generated by Beyblade in general. Happy to know that my understanding of “casual” and “competitive” play doesn’t deviate too much from the WBO standpoint, as our country only has TT Standard Beystadiums for play.

    Basically, the revision states that bounce-back from walls (of pockets) are to be allowed as long as the Bey in question is able to get back into the central play area within a few seconds until a finality is determined within the said play area. In the event that the Bey gets stuck in pocket while STILL spinning, it will have 3 scenarios (gets back into central play area spinning, stops spinning in the pocket altogether, or self-Bursts prior to its spin stopping). 1st scenario lets Bey still battle till finality is reached, 2nd and 3rd scenario are treated as KO. Did I get those right?

    And also, forgive me for possibly making this a bit more confusing but, in order for a Bey to still be treated as “in-play” after pocket wall-bounce, it has to spin onto the central play area first prior to proceeding to hit the opponent to be considered, correct? In this case, if it first gets contact to opposing Bey (and Bursts it), will it still be considered as “in-play” prior to the hit and count as Burst for the bouncing Bey, or will it NOT BE thus considering the Burst null and having the bouncing Bey penalized the KO point for the opponent instead? I ask this because this actually applies to mobile attack/aggro combos which admittedly have become quite large that they tend to stick in between the wall pockets during play more often than not.

    1. Hi Rouzuke,

      Happy to have the perspective of someone who plays with WBBA rules frequently. Maybe someday we’ll see some WBO tournaments in your area as well? 🙂

      WBO events currently only allow for TAKARA-TOMY stadiums as well (because they are the most balanced competitively at least in terms of how competitive Beyblade is traditionally viewed, in our opinion), but when conceiving of this definition, I also thought about some of the long-term goals we have on the WBO.

      We will talk more about this in the future on the site, but essentially we want to become more welcoming to all types of play and in all types of formats. So, it only made sense for this new definition to philosophically follow where we are going to be taking the WBO in the future; more inclusive, more open, and more comprehensive. So I considered all Beyblade formats and stadiums I could think of, both Hasbro and TT to try and create a solid fundamental and philosophical base for us to build from.

      All three of your scenarios are correct.

      You did make it a little bit more confusing haha. But that seems to come with the territory when talking about this subject. I think I follow.

      In your scenario, based on my definition, the Beyblade which entered the Extended Play Area, bounced back in, and bursted the opponent would be awarded the Burst Finish for that round.

      A Beyblade which enters the Extended Play Area and meets the conditions outlined in the definition to still be considered in-play is … still in-play. It’s a continuous state.

      Even while in the Extended Play Area, it is never considered out-of-play while it meets the conditions outlined in the definition. As soon as it fails to meet those conditions (meaning it “cannot enter”, “cannot return”, or stops spinning outside the Primary Play Area) it would be considered knocked-out. Does that make sense?

      1. I see. That does make sense, yes.

        Regarding the “confusing” part, I was imagining how mobile attack/aggro combos tend to behave in the stadium with a player hellbent on a KO or Burst. I do understand what you meant by “in-play” so far, but the scenario I was consulting for was whether or not you would still count the “Burst” as a Burst if the Bey rebounded from the Extended Play Area (ex wall pocket) and its entirety hit the opponent first and resulted to it Bursting without the rebounding Bey’s Driver tip first touching the stadium prior to the hit (maybe an image of playing table tennis where upon service the ball should bounce through both sides of the table prior to main rally/match, or probably think like the Bey felt like it was just a Phoenix Armor flying lol). I ask this because I have seen from the relevant WBO forum discussion with one comment featuring a picture of the tip of Ig’ touching the rim of the tornado ridge while the rest of the Bey is stuck in-between the wall pockets of a standard Beystadium and still being counted as “in-play”; forgive me if I’m stretching this too far for the possibilities, but I think that kind of scenario may still be common especially if TT will continue to make Burst Beys have larger circumferences in the future.

        1. If a Beyblade which has entered the Extended Play Area returns to the Primary Play Area and bursts the opponent before touching the stadium again prior to the hit: that’s fine.

          The Primary Play Area in my definition explicitly describes it as the “space in the central area of a BeyStadium”. Key word here being “space”; whether the Beyblade is physically touching the stadium floor, wall, etc or not is immaterial. What matters is that it is spinning inside the Primary Play Area, whether it be on the floor or in the air.

          In the example with Imperial that you’ve mentioned, it would still be considered in-play while spinning in that position because it is in contact with the inside of the Primary Play Area. If no part was touching the inside of the Primary Play Area, it would be considered to exist in the Extended Play Area. At this point, the judge would be able to decide whether based on how it is moving if it can still feasibly and quickly return or not.

          And it’s okay! Stretching this as far as possible is what I want in order to make sure the definition we eventually implement is bulletproof.

  6. Dang… You are really dedicated to this game to write these articles so long. Just letting you know that we appreciate it and can’t wait to see more! =D

    1. Thank you so much! I’ll definitely be writing more, so please stay tuned.

      Subscribe to the BeyBase newsletter on this page, or follow me on Instagram/Twitter and you’ll be one of the first to know whenever I post something new.

  7. I know this situation is a bit specific, but wouldn’t the rule create slight (but plausible) differences between tournaments? Here’s the situation: a Burst Beyblade gets knocked into the pocket with the Layer being more or less perpendicular with the floor, then the Layer hits the floor and makes the combo bounce back into the Stadium. Depending on what you put underneath the Stadium, the combo might not even bounce back into the Stadium, lose a lot of Stamina, get really close to the Burst point, and/or get damaged. Would this be too small of a factor to change the new or existing rules because of how specific it is or is it just more of a reason to standardize one surface that should go underneath because of the preexisting variance of how much the Stadium slides around on different surfaces?

    1. In regards to of what surfaces we play on: When I host tournaments I had been using these cardboard shipping boxes of 18x18x4 mm to hold the stadiums. The “floor” was always be cardboard. Recently, I have decided to upgrade the floor with those carpet grip things (see Gorilla Gripper pads on amazon). My view is that even if the floor can be different between tournaments. The important thing is for the floor to be consistent for both players. As long as the floor conditions are similar for both players and the players can see what type of surface prior to starting, I think I am happy with that. I feel the same way about leveling the stadium. Even a new and old stadium will have some differences in terms of how smooth the stadium floor may be.

    2. This is a good question!

      In an ideal world, yes, the surface would be 100% consistent from event to event around the world.

      Unfortunately, we are not a professional organization with the means to enforce and fund such detailed consistency ourselves. For example, we can’t send standardized stadium boxes to all Organizers like TT does for WBBA events in Japan.

      What Shindog said is exactly right. Consistency of surface conditions within the context of each individual event is what’s most key for Organizers to consider.

      Changing conditions from event to event can be a pain on some level, but to me it is acceptable when all players are being subjected to the same conditions.

      That said, certainly we could look at offering suggestions for specific surfaces (or products like Shindog mentioned) in the future. Maybe there is a way for us to introduce a greater level of consistency, but I’m not sure when or if we’ll ever get to the point where we can enforce that all Organizers use the exact same surface worldwide.

      1. I think something that I forgot to mention with the surface concern is that there are competitive sports that are played on very different surfaces and fields. Perhaps the best example is tennis. Golf and baseball also quickly comes to mind with how different the courses are put together and how baseball parks aren’t the same size . I like to think that we can consider the different surfaces under stadium as a level of added strategic consideration.

        1. Yup, that is also true! Strategy for an event can certainly be influenced by the play surface under the stadium. I also agree with your other comment about the surface of new vs. old stadiums.

          There will always be some variables, but things like this I think are within the range of being natural and acceptable when we think about how we can realistically create and maintain a competitive, relatively consistent environment.

          1. Ah, that parallel between Beyblade and sports does make sense. I was just thinking that rankings might be slightly affected by different surfaces, but I guess it’s just like how we determine what kind of combo is competitive: it needs to be good in several situations, not just one. I was never against the idea of wall-bounces counting as in-play, but that one point was just nagging at me. I hope to see the change happen soon if it becomes official so that people can start labbing out combos that knock their opponents clean into the pocket and avoid the wall-bounce.

  8. If the best way to beat your opponent is too push them into something they cannot possibly return from, then what would this mean for stamina types? It seems as if with these new rules it’s so much easier to win by stamina, competitive players will most likely feel like knockouts are the best way to win and they will primarily use attack types, although, if they bounce of the wall in the play area exit then they will lose a substantial amount of spin, so this would make stamina types the most useful in this situation. I just feel like this artical is a little misleading that’s all.

    1. Hey Bio_Requiem. The best way to beat your opponent would not be to push them into something they cannot return from; outspinning and burst finish are also just as viable depending on the context. They too are things your opponent cannot possibly return from.

      My new proposed definitions do create the potential for situations where stamina types can benefit from bouncing back into the stadium. This is something I acknowledged in the article.

      However, when you look at the wider picture and what all of the possibilities actually are: these same benefits can also apply to attack types. Particularly in common situations where attack types self-KO briefly and bounce back in at the start of a match.

      The benefit or lack thereof of being knocked into a pocket and bouncing back depends entirely on the context, so I’m not sure we can so simply reduce it to the one situation where it seems like stamina types would benefit. It’s possible they can return with a lot of stamina, but it’s also possible being knocked out and coming back in would leave them with little stamina remaining. It depends on the context.

      A test event I ran in Toronto combined with my in-person experience spectating and playing in events in Japan that rule KOs in a similar way to what I am proposing makes me extremely confident that on the whole, attack types will still be a competitively viable option if this new definition is implemented.

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