WBO Organized Play Updates January 2023: Experimental Rebound Period, and More!

Hello World Bladers!
Today we have a slew of very interesting and meaningful updates for you, ranging from when we qualify the start of a battle to when Organizers can qualify a met win condition (via a new unranked experimental option), as well as few minor updates to legal Drivers for Burst Classic and Burst Limited.

Updates Overview
  • [IMPORTANT] All Formats: Start of Battle & Mid-Air Contact Clarifications
  • [IMPORTANT] All Burst Formats: Unranked Experimental Rebound Clause
  • [IMPORTANT] All Burst Formats: "Win Condition Priority" Section Expanded
  • Burst Classic & Limited: Hasbro Bearing and Atomic Series Drivers now unbanned

All Formats: Start of Battle & Mid-Air Contact Clarifications

Historically, going back as far as the Plastics generation, the technique of "sniping" (or "gattyaki" for veteran Bladers) has remained an unusually legal outlier in the rulebook, and deliberately so. Out of the respect of those who were skilled enough to perform it consistently, the WBO rules have always intentionally left leeway in rulings to enable this strategy.

However, in the current day, the concept of "sniping" - that is, hitting your opponent's Beyblade mid-air before ever touching the stadium floor, in an attempt to immediately knock them out or drastically reduce their spin - seems unsportsmanlike and promotes two unhealthy behaviours; one which plays around the rules and realities of Beyblade rather than within them, and another which attempts to end a game before the average Blader would consider it to have started.

After reviewing this at length internally (and we mean at length!), we have decided to clamp down on this with the following change being implemented across all formats:

Format Rulebook - Relaunching Wrote:If your launch is obstructed or noticeably underpowered due to an event beyond your control or contact is made in mid-air, you can request a relaunch, which will immediately void and end the current battle.

The primary reasons you’d want to request a relaunch are:
  • Your launcher malfunctions in a way that causes your launch to be underpowered
  • You are accidentally hit or shoved by the opposing player or a spectator
  • Contact was made before both Beyblades touch the stadium floor once.
Bladers are entitled to a single relaunch per battle, though judges may freely invoke relaunches for Bladers outside of their allocation if they have a valid concern.

Bladers must request a relaunch during the countdown or immediately afterwards. The judge may deny the request if they determine that you were at fault or requested too late.

This change now ensures that both Beyblades touch the stadium floor at least once before contact can be made, no longer making sniping during the launch procedure a legitimate strategy. Similar to when a launch is obstructed or a launcher skips, a Blader's Beyblade is interrupted while entering the stadium and the battle is to be re-done.

Closely related to this is tightening up/refining the understanding of when a battle begins to reflect the above change. The start of a battle has historically been at the end of the Judge calling "3-2-1 Go Shoot", rather than when the Beyblades actually interact with the stadium. However, the following changes will now be made:

Format Rulebook - Launching Wrote:A battle is prompted with the call of “3–2–1 Go Shoot!” and begins when both Beyblades have made contact with the stadium floor at least once.
Both bladers must simultaneously launch their Beyblades as the word “shoot” is called.
  • Keep your Launcher held within your KO half of the BeyStadium. Never attempt to obstruct your opponent’s launch.
  • Bladers cannot shoot their Beyblade onto the opponent's Beyblade mid-air.
  • Bladers must keep their Beyblade within a 30cm/1ft radius from the centerpoint of the BeyStadium floor for the duration of their launch.
  • Do not touch the BeyStadium at any time. If you think the BeyStadium should be adjusted, ask a judge.
  • If a winder-based launcher is being used, a legal launch consists of the winder being pulled out of the launcher, rather than pushed in.

With this change, while Bladers should still launch on "shoot", the start of a battle is shifted to when both Beyblades touch the stadium floor instead. This means that win conditions, such as the Knock-Out that may incur via midair contact, cannot be incurred until both Beyblades have touched the stadium floor. 

All Burst Formats: Rebound Unranked Experimental Period Begins

For those unaware, the Knock-Outs you see in Burst today aren't what they've always been! Back in September 2017, a change was made to the Knockout ruling in Burst formats, removing the ability to avoid a knockout by bouncing back off the back wall of a pocket and back into the stadium. This veered the the WBO ruleset away from the WBBA's ruling on this, which still permitted them.

This change was met with mixed reception at the time, but has become an accepted rule in the modern game, particularly as Beys have increased in size and weight over time. However, we do still see mentions of this rule being removed from time to time, often for different reasons; some find the ruling a headache, some find it a deviation from the "intended Burst experience that should be", and so on.

But the one main reason we hear is to simplify judging. It is no secret that this rule in it's current form requires Judges to have a keen eye on pockets and exits, particularly in Attack matchups, as a knockout can happen in a flash. Rebounds however, prevent this, creating a situation where either a Bey is either stuck in a pocket or isn't, and doesn't mandate the same keen eye.

We don't believe there is a right or wrong answer to this debate, as both ways of handling this have merit. However, we hear the calls and would like to encourage the community to voice their feedback and give the ruling a try.

Starting today, we will be implementing an unranked experimental period of the Rebound Clause, to gather data, gauge support and overall interest for bringing our ruling more in line with the WBBA. This will use the following rule amendments:

Unranked Experimental Ruling: "Knocked-Out" Wrote:
A Beyblade is knocked-out when it exits the stadium and does not return. Beyblades stuck on an element of a stadium are still considered in-play.

Beyblades that bounce back into the stadium after exiting the stadium are still considered in play.
Unranked Experimental Ruling: How to Win Section Wrote:
To win a match, a Blader must score enough points (3-5) to meet the victory requirement of the Match Type being used.

You score point(s) when:
  • The opposing Beyblade stops spinning 
  • The opposing Beyblade exits the BeyStadium (2 Points)
  • The opposing Beyblade bursts, OR if Frame, God Chip, or Driver Chip comes off 

Of note, the inclusion of a 2-point KOs is exclusive to the inclusion of Rebounds, as this is an incentive to offset that KOs may become harder to achieve.

For those that choose to partake in this experimental unranked period, we require you to explicitly mention this rule choice when proposing and hosting events, and appropriately mark it as "Experimental" and "Unranked" when using the "Schedule an Event" form.

During the experimental period, we will be gathering feedback in a thread linked below, so we invite Bladers to weigh in on this ruling there after trying this in an experimental event.

This experimental period does not have a definitive timeline as of yet, as we are mostly interested in seeing how well this kind of change is received by Organizers, Judges, and participants before making any decisions on the topic. We intend to keep a close eye on this and hope that everyone will be willing to give us their feedback over time to inform any future decision.

All Burst Formats: "Win Condition Priority" Section Expanded

This little alteration is more of a clarification than it is changing how we play. Previously, the Gameplay Appendix did not have a full-fledged "Priority" section for win conditions, only stipulating that Bursts take precedent over Knock-Outs. However, we have decided to expand on this section to provide clarity going forward. For context, the ruling previous read the following:

(Former) Burst Rulebook - Gameplay Appendices Wrote:Burst+KO Draw (Burst Priority)
If a collision between two Beyblades results in one being bursted and the other being knocked-out at the same time, the knocked-out Beyblade is the winner (as it leaves the BeyStadium a fraction of a second after the burst occurs).

Starting today, this ruling has been removed and replaced with the following:

(Current) Burst Rulebook Gameplay Appendices Wrote:Win Condition Priority
Knock-Outs take priority over Spin Finishes. If a collision between two Beyblades results in one being knocked-out and the other losing all of its spin at the same time, the no-longer-spinning Beyblade is the winner (as it lands the deciding blow before being out-spun).

Bursts take priority over all. If a collision between two Beyblades results in one being bursted and the other being knocked-out at the same time, the knocked-out Beyblade is the winner (as it leaves the BeyStadium a fraction of a second after the burst occurs).

While disputes regarding this rarely occur, we believe that being thorough and also providing Bladers with a definitive hierarchy of win conditions will help out in those rare instances when they do occur.

Burst Classic & Burst Limited: Hasbro Bearing and Atomic Series Drivers Unbanned

If you play Burst Classic or Limited with any regularity, you'll know that several prolific parts are currently banned from these: Hasbro's version of the Bearing Driver in both formats, and the Atomic series of Drivers - Atomic, Atomic-S and Atomic' in Classic.

At the time of their banning, these made a lot of sense, either being meta-warping or infinitely splashable parts which significantly reduced part diversity in either format. However, as these formats have grown older and gained access to newer and more potent Driver choices, the fear of these Drivers has become misplaced, and we feel these parts are no longer as relevant as they once were.

With this in mind, effective immediately, Bearing (Hasbro), Atomic, Atomic-S and Atomic' are once again legal for use in Burst Classic and Burst Limited. The "Legal Equipment" section in both format rulebooks has been updated accordingly.


If you have any feedback on these particular changes, or any questions or suggestions for further adjustments or additions, please post your thoughts below or in the WBO Organized Play Rules thread.

Thank you to everyone for your continued support of WBO Organized Play! We appreciate any and all feedback and are always looking to improve and clarify things where possible.
love the knockout taking priority over spin finish. We'll see how the rebound works, being a haspro user that could be the bain of my guiltys existance.
So glad to finally get rid of "Gatyakki". Even as a lover of older generations it always felt fairer and still sufficient to do a gliding shot across the floor anyway. Also very glad to see some largely needless bans in classic and limited withdrawn, though obviously will be keeping a close eye on them.
Very interested to see community feedback on rebounds. Don't like it myself but not sure which way the community will go so it'll definitely be interesting.
rebounds and 2 point KOs in standard? just like Singapore WBBA style, gonna be running Gatling Almight+D+V all day woohoo
Super stoked about the rebound format. Gonna be really fun to see more battles in the haspro stadium, but I’m still unsure how I feel about 2 point k-o’s in burst.
Dont exactly think the rebound rule will be that good but still should get a try. And the 2 point ko would be interesting too
I would prefer if WBBA 5g and 3on3 are available as ranked formats. It would be easy to do and will keep the wbo format as its own thing for people who want to play the way they have been.
(Jan. 03, 2023  8:07 AM)Zektor Wrote: I don't like a mandatory 2-point KO and rebound format tbh. I would prefer if WBBA 5g and 3on3 are available as ranked formats. It would be easy to do and will keep the wbo format as its own thing for people who want to play the way they have been.

Legitimately love this idea - we've been playing this way for years now... I'm quite fond of it. If we also want to play like the wbba, then let's have a wbba format and get 5g done at the same time!
Seems like a great solution for everyone, and being wbba based, very low maintenance for us too.
This is excellent to see. Let's hope it is not too long in testing and officially brought to ranked play. I'm hyped.
(Jan. 03, 2023  4:54 PM)Mr. Palazzo Wrote: This is excellent to see. Let's hope it is not too long in testing and officially brought to ranked play. I'm hyped.

I like you to know I have referred back to your thread all these years while this was discussed.  Things don’t move fast, but sound recommendations don’t actually get forgotten.  Thanks for starting the discussion way back when.  There is lots of good posts in the thread that touches on the rationale and even some testing:

So I would like to put in my thoughts regarding these new rules and the Rebound Experimental period.

First let me get the win condition priority out of the way.
I think this is a great step in the right direction. I do not see instances other than the Burst vs KO priority come up often. In fact they are very rare. However, it feels better now to be able to give a point to someone rather than having players redo the match. So I’m all for this one.

Next let’s talk about the start of the battle and where it begins.
Honestly, I like this rule change. I believe the WBBA has a ruling similar to this already and it makes sense as to why it is there. However, the one thing I am uncertain of is can this rule be exploited by players if the judge is not using a camera? I don’t want to see players launch their beys in, and one hits the other before it touches the stadium floor and causes a KO, but there was no camera to determine if it actually touched the floor or not. You could get into some weird situations where bladers will feel cheated out of their point because no one really knew if it hit the floor or not. A small group of us had a tournament where we played WBBA 5g rules and we had that rule as something we needed to be aware of. And let me tell you, having every match recorded made it really easy to see if the beys hit the stadium or not. You can see the moment the bey hits the floor and bounces up in slow mo. But in regular time/with the naked eye it’s almost impossible to see. So I’m for this rule, I’m just cautious about it.

Finally let’s talk about the rebound experimental period.
I am very indifferent about this rule. I definitely like the balance of taking away the back wall point and making KOs more rewarding with 2 points instead of 1 since they are now “harder” to achieve. However, so many people have come to accept the back wall being a point that some people are going to start getting confused. I hate to say it but rules constantly changing or being reworded, or even getting reverted causes so much confusion. There are still veteran players that don’t remember what format win conditions are worth what points. Now as I said earlier I recently held a WBBA 5g tournament and I have to say, playing with WBBAs rules over the WBOs was 10 times easier to explain, keep consistent, and it even had the tournament move a lot faster. So where as i definitely would love this rule I think the better solution was stated by Zektor. We should really just have a WBBA format and a WBO format. I think a WBBA format would be nice for players and organizers that just want to play Beyblade and not have to worry about any special rulings on certain parts or with what stadiums can be used or anything. Not to mention it would take almost 0 effort from staff to manage anything about the format because TT already does it for you. So it would be quick, and simple to implement. Not to mention it would be nice for western bladers to learn how the rest of the world plays Beyblade. If there was ever a world championship tournament and it was hosted by TT us western bladers would be in big trouble. Lol.

So that is what I have to say about all of these rule changes. I like them all. Let me know if you agree or not.