What is Grifball?

Grifball is a custom gametype within Halo 3, Halo: Reach, Halo 4, and Halo 5: Guardians that was designed to play like a sport rather than a first-person shooter.  Two teams of four players face off on opposite sides of a court with a ball spawning in the center.  At the start of each round, the two teams rush to the center of the court to retrieve the ball.  Once a team has possession of the ball, they can score by planting it on the opposing team’s goal, while the opposing team attempts to stop them from doing so and force a turnover.  Each player spawns with a hammer and a sword to help each team accomplish these tasks.  Players can use the hammer to quickly take out opposing players without the ball from a distance or, while the sword can be used to try and take out a ball carrier in one hit, forcing a turnover.  The runner (the player carrying the ball) doesn’t have access to either of these weapons while carrying the ball, but does gain increased speed, damage resistance, and the ability to “stiff-arm” defenders from close-range with good timing.

The game is primarily played either with a number of untimed rounds or with a single timed continuous round.  League play typically uses nine untimed rounds, with the game ending once a team has scored five goals.  Matchmaking will normally use the single timed round variant, or, in older games, a five timed-round variant.

What do I need to play Grifball?

Grifball gametypes and maps for custom games are available for Halo 3, Halo: Reach, Halo 4, Halo: The Master Chief Collection, and Halo 5: Guardians.  There is also a permanent Grifball matchmaking playlist in Halo: Reach, Halo 4, Halo: The Master Chief Collection, and Halo 5: Guardians.  If you’re looking to join a custom game, or if you need players to start up a Grifball lobby, try asking around on the PlayGrifball forums or ask a member of PlayGrifball staff for an invite to the community Discord.

In addition to custom lobbies and matchmaking, PlayGrifball regularly runs organized Grifball leagues and events throughout the year, almost all of which are open to all players.

How do I join a Grifball team?

If you’re a free agent trying to find a team, take a look at our Recruiting forums to make a free agent post or to see what teams are currently searching for new players.  Alternatively, if you notice a lot of other players that are currently free agents also looking for teams, you could start up your own team.

If you’re looking to participate in the primary Grifball league, the AGLA, then you don’t need to worry about finding a team.  The AGLA works on a bid system, where captains bid on and draft players to form their teams – registration for these seasons is all done on an individual basis, and normally all players who register end up on a team.  If you’re a new player signing up for the AGLA for the first time, be sure to keep an eye out for rookie mixers and other events prior to bidding – this will help you meet other league players and give AGLA captains a chance to see what you’re capable of.

How do I get better at Grifball?

Although Grifball is a very simple concept that’s easy to pick up and grasp, mastering it requires knowledge of all the little intricacies of the game which can only be obtained in one way: lots and lots of practice.  While the matchmaking playlist is a great way to get some practice and start developing your Grifball skills, the best way to get practice and learn all the little things that veteran players do to take their game to the next level is to regularly play with and against those veteran players.  Aside from PlayGrifball leagues and events, the easiest way to do that is to get into custom game lobbies with league players – if you want to find a game, try asking around on the PlayGrifball forums or ask a member of PlayGrifball staff for an invite to the community Discord, where players are regularly putting together custom lobbies.

In addition to practice, check our News page periodically – we post a variety of Grifball-related content, including some tips and tricks articles and veteran player interviews that can give you some additional pointers.

What is PlayGrifball?

PlayGrifball is the world’s largest organizer of competitive and recreational Grifball leagues and events, and was founded by former GrifballHub directors Rage More Nerd and SonicNachos in 2018 after GrifballHub announced that it would be shutting down.  With much of its leadership coming from the old Hub, PlayGrifball carries on the mantle GrifballHub left behind, and has taken on the Hub’s old role as the official Grifball community.  For more information on PlayGrifball and the history of the Sport of the Future, check out our About page.

The American Grifball League of America (AGLA) is PlayGrifball’s biggest league, and is the same Grifball league that was originally created by Rooster Teeth in 2008.  In 2013, the AGLA began operating using a “bid system,” where captains form teams by bidding “credits” on players rather than having players form their own teams.  The system has been refined considerably since its first debut and has had great success as a means to provide better parity among teams, creating a more competitive environment, and the system is still in use today.  For more information on the AGLA, check out the AGLA home page, or check the AGLA forums.

Is PlayGrifball a for-profit site?

Nope!  PlayGrifball is run entirely by volunteers who have a passion for Grifball and currently is not intended to turn a profit.  Right now, site owners and staff pay for all hosting and operating costs out-of-pocket, and any revenue made goes toward reimbursing those costs or towards other site expenses.