Drone Combat has announced the launch of the world’s first drone team sport Flightball at Insomnia 63, the UK’s largest eGaming festival.
Flightball is an aerial five-a-side football game, played with specially-protected drones and a floating ball.
Trials and heats will culminate in an Open Tournament at Insomnia 63, held at the NEC in Birmingham 24-27 August 2018, with pilot recruiting to pave the way for a comprehensive 2019 World Championship. Interested pilots can sign up to play in The Flightball Arena on the day or in advance at flightballgame.com.
“Drone use is usually a pretty solitary pastime,” commented CEO, James Waite.
“Where you try your very best not to hit anything. Flightball on the other hand encourages groups to get together and play with drones, and the objective is to hit anything you can.”
The game’s limited rule set freely allows drone-on-drone contact as part of game strategy. Protective cages for the player drones, the result of 18 months research, are made from carbon fibre and specially designed 3d printed parts. The company plans to make these available for modification to the player community.
“While VR and AR present unique gaming possibilities for us in the future, we think that plain old Reality still has a lot to offer,” added co-founder and Robot Wars veteran, Bill Rudgard.
“Drones are clearly fascinating millions of people, but the opportunities to fly freely are becoming more limited. Flightball adds to the thrills and skills of drone flying for ordinary pilots and we’re encouraging wide access to the sport with few barriers to getting involved.”
Over the next months Drone Combat will be on the road demonstrating Flightball and recruiting new pilots. The player drones will be made available for sale in complete and kit form, and team formation will be actively supported ahead of a range of regional, national and international events planned for 2019.