As the world’s leading organizer of competitive and recreational Grifball leagues and events, PlayGrifball’s primary objective is to create a friendly, welcoming environment where any and all gamers can participate in organized Grifball competitions. To help accomplish this goal, all PlayGrifball participants and community members are asked to follow the PlayGrifball Code of Conduct while on the site and when participating in PlayGrifball leagues or events.
What is Grifball?
The story of Grifball began in 2007, with the Heroic Map Pack release for Halo 3. To introduce the map pack, Rooster Teeth created a Red vs. Blue short, featuring the main cast exploring the new maps. During the videos’ creation, Rooster Teeth created a court on Foundry for a scene that didn’t make it into the final cut. While the court wasn’t ultimately used in the video, Rooster Teeth’s Burnie Burns continued to play around with the court over the next several months, ultimately creating the gametype that would become known as Grifball.
In December 2007, Rooster Teeth hosted the first-ever Grifball tournament, which was capped at eight teams comprised of both Rooster Teeth staff and community members. Although the tournament didn’t have room for a large amount of players, it developed enough interest for Rooster Teeth to look at running subsequent events, and the company launched Grifball.com at the start of the new year. The first official website for Grifball was accompanied by a proper Grifball league: the American Grifball League of America. Although the league was originally managed by Rooster Teeth’s Jack Pattillo, over time the reins were handed over to the community as Jack moved on to focus on the quickly-growing Achievement Hunter. Some of Grifball’s community leaders during this time, such as former commissioner PP MowCow PP (Caleb Denecour), would later end up working at Rooster Teeth themselves.
With the high popularity of the AGLA and Grifball in general, Bungie would come to introduce Grifball as a double XP playlist early in 2008, a playlist that would regularly return throughout Halo 3’s lifetime. The rapid growth of Grifball and the leagues would also lead to several fan sites being created, one of the most notable among them being GrifballHub.com, which later become host to its own recreational Grifball league, the Good Games League (GGL). During this time, Rooster Teeth also hosted Grifball events at conventions such as PAX and created several videos on Grifball, including Red vs. Blue PSAs and a spin-off of the popular machinima based off a fictional version of the AGLA.
The AGLA continued to operate on Grifball.com until 2011, not long after the release of Halo: Reach. With Rooster Teeth having seen significant growth and success over the past several years, they no longer had the resources to dedicate to managing the Grifball site and community, and the AGLA split off to become its own community, moving to a new site created by AGLA admin TrueFlyingCow. The AGLA would continue to operate on its own until early 2013, when it came to merge with GrifballHub.com. At the same time as the merger, the league transitioned to a new rules system, with involved teams being formed by having captains bid on players to develop better parity between teams and help foster competition. This bid system would continued to be fine-tuned over the next several years and is still in place in the AGLA today.
With the two largest Grifball leagues combined into one powerhouse site, GrifballHub saw rapid growth through the majority of Halo 4’s lifetime. Along with the merger in 2013, GrifballHub held a Kickstarter to allow them to exhibit at the Rooster Teeth Expo (RTX), which completely blew past expectations. The Hub’s original goal was surpassed enough to allow them to double their originally-planned booth size, and the Hub booth became a major attraction at the convention with games of LAN Grifball going at all times on the show floor. The Hub would continue to expand its RTX presence for the next several years, culminating in a 20′ x 40′ booth at RTX 2016 that featured the Grifball Center Stage, which hosted Play-a-Pro throughout the convention in addition to the Grifball World Championship.
GrifballHub staff setting up the RTX 2017 Grifball Center Stage.
In 2017, longtime GrifballHub owners Kalbelgarion and Goosechecka stepped away from the Hub, and the decision was made to shutdown GrifballHub. Grifball, however, still had a dedicated following, and two of GrifballHub’s directors, Rage More Nerd and SonicNachos, founded PlayGrifball, ensuring the Sport of the Future would live on. The GrifballHub community transitioned to PlayGrifball in early 2018, starting a new era of Grifball history.
PlayGrifball is owned by former Hub directors SonicNachos and Rage More Nerd. A part of the Grifball community since the late Halo 3 days in 2010, Sonic was responsible for much of the planning behind projects such as the RTX 2016 Grifball Center Stage as GrifballHub’s Director of Development, and also led the design and development of a new GrifballHub website which would later come to be PlayGrifball.com. Prior to becoming director, he held several other roles within AGLA and GrifballHub leadership, previously serving as the Hub’s Technical Director, AGLA Commissioner and, prior to the merger, AGLA Head of Advertising. In addition to his duties as one of PlayGrifball’s owners, he also serves as the site webmaster.
Originally joining the leagues in spring 2011, Rage More Nerd was formerly GrifballHub’s Director of Grifball, in which he was responsible for overseeing the league administration teams for all GrifballHub leagues, including the AGLA and GGL. He also worked very closely with the Hub’s former Director of Marketing DJBluePDX on the Grifball Trials Series, a community testing ground that brainstormed and tested new ideas for changes to the leagues and/or Grifball gametypes. Prior to his director role, Rage worked for several years as a member of the AGLA and GGL administration teams. At PlayGrifball, he oversees the operation of all organized Grifball leagues and events and manages the AGLA administration team.
Longtime AGLA administrators NOPLEX, The Piggies, and PoisonxPoptart all serve as PlayGrifball staff and hold a minority ownership role within PlayGrifball. In addition to their work as AGLA admins, these three also work alongside Sonic and Rage to discuss and make decisions on the operation and long-term vision of PlayGrifball. The members of GrifballHub’s old Grifball Trials Series also work with PlayGrifball owners and staff as community leaders, and are often consulted by owners and staff in an advisory role.