Fen Sports

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There are many sports in Fenspace - some brought along from Earth and adapted to the local conditions, a few created out of whole cloth, and many lifted more-or-less intact from fiction.

One of the ones adapted from an Earth sport is the Armstrong Day Classic, a treacherous 5,000 kilometer off-road rally through the most dangerous ranges of the Moon. As the name implies, it's run every July 20.

Asteroid Racing

Main article: Asteroid Racing

Asteroid Racing was the first Fen sport.


Main article: Astroball

Astroball is a team space-based game, once described by a BNF in the VVS as "somewhere between quidditch, soccer, and demolition derby, and a hell of a lot of fun." It's based loosely on the game of the same name from the anime Stellvia of the Universe.


The game Capo basically started as tossing an emergency vacc-suit helmet - a circle of plastic with a thickened rim that is meant to unroll into an airtight helmet; a makeshift Frisbee®. Everyone has a spare hood...

The game can be played {differently} with or without atmosphere or gravity.

Its main advantage is the low cost to play. Even soccer requires equipment - an inflatable ball and a pump. Stick-ball requires more basic equipment (stick + rock) but can be dangerous in space (special equipment required). But a generic, readily available, soft plastic disc, free on shuttles? Toss dat Capo.

Exocomp Racing

Main article: Exocomp Racing

A major fun sport at Catgirl Industries, with catgirls racing on little flying robots.

The "Golden Age Superman Marathon"

Played on Luna and taking advantage of the low gravity of as-yet-unfinished Lunar bases, this involves "leaping tall buildings in a single bound." This isn't often literally the case, but the same sorts of folks who dash across the tops of 'danelaw buildings in New York and Paris just love the wuxia movie feeling of roof-hopping in 1/6 G.

King of Fen-ers

Many AIs' favourite sport, "KoFen" is a virtual-reality fighting game that from the outside bears remarkable similarities to various coin-op and console platform fighting games. Matches are held in cyberspace - participants either use neural induction helmets (if meat-type sentients) or jack in (if electronic-type sentients). Humanoid participants may provide avatars of themselves, while any player can use a character from at an assortment of CRPG and FPS games. The Cyber Confederation maintains the servers and takes care of any problems with scale. (KoFen is the only venue where Safety and Wave Convoy could fight hand-to-hand, or stand face-to-face.)

Competition matches are divided into three classes, based on how the competitors would handle being shot in the gut. Class 3 approximates "fall on the floor and begin bleeding to death," 2 is more of "cringe at the big welt," and 1 is "either basically not notice or dodge it." The servers are programmed to damp out the virtual effects of any killing blows, regardless.

KoFen opened for play in late 2013.


Based on the sport of the same name from Gunnm and originating within the Panzer Kunst Gruppe. Best described as a cross between NASCAR, rugby and Ultimate Fighting Championship. The overall match winner is the one who scores the most points in the course of a game. Points are awarded both for winning the race by carrying the motorball across the line after a set number of laps, for knocking opponents out of the race, with special awards going to a fan-favourite or for taking on special obstacles. There are penalties for stopping or deliberately traveling in reverse on the track, while fighting in the pit-lane is an immediate disqualification. It is possible for a player to win the race on the track, but lose on points. For crowd safety reasons, use of projectile, explosive or directed energy weapons is expressly forbidden.

While not expressly required by the rules, motorball is particularly dangerous if one isn't a cyborg, with lost limbs and crunching impacts being common. Participants routinely reach speeds of over 400kph on some tracks. A number of KoFen mods of varying quality exist for those who want the thrills, but don't want the risk that goes with it.

Most popular on Mars with tracks at Grunthal, Helium, Marsbase Sara, Port Lowell and New Adelaide. The highlight of the annual racing season is the New Adelaide Opal 400 held at the New Bathurst Raceway, with the championship often going right down to the wire. The current champion (and the first non-Panzer Kunst champion) is Paul Fireball Jacobs.

A special exhibition event was once held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the United States to promote James Cameron's Battle Angel live-action adaptation of Gunnm.

The Port Phobos Invitational

The Port Phobos Invitational is an annual "sporting" event that started during one of the victory celebrations at the end of the Boskone war. A large group of OGJ soldiers from almost every faction were celebrating in Mars orbit when someone (no one remembers, or admits to who) started a brawl.

It eventually degenerated into a two-day-long battle involving 'waved nerf guns, foam swords and every non-lethal weapon in the Fen's arsenal. When it was all over the participants said, "that was fun, let's do it again! ... Once the bruises heal."

Little has changed since that first day. The Port Phobos Invitational is a multi-day war of shifting, treacherous alliances fought to the last laugh with the silliest weapons in known space, where the last crew or person (you expect Pirates not to back stab you when it's all in the name of fun?) standing wins. With the exception of the personal quarters of those not involved and critical areas of the station, there are no bounds, and no time outs.


Main article: Quidditch

The Wizards' favourite sport, based on the game from the Harry Potter stories.

Target Surfing

The rules are simple: Using only your initial push off a surface, touch as closely as you can to a target point on another wall. Measure from where you touch to the target, and score that many points (your choice of units, but everybody uses the same units). Continue from that point to a target point on another wall, measuring and scoring again. Keep chaining the targets until you get to the end of the course. Lowest score wins.

Obviously, this is a zero-G sport. A similar game has been played on the ISS since before handwavium was discovered, but it's a timed run, not a precision run.

If you're really bad at the game and really long-lived, you can do the Kessel Run in five parsecs...

The Solar Regatta

A challenging race for the larger fencraft, with a course that transits the orbits of all the classically-known planets and has required "navigational hazards" checkpoints. There are several divisions, but in general nothing smaller than a Type B Motorhome has ever competed, due to the distances involved.

AIs are specifically prohibited from taking part in smaller ships for safety reasons.

The Trekkies sponsor an annual Solar Regatta, awarding the Federation Cup to the winner.

Zero-G Gymnastics

Also known as "stardancing"

This is the most peaceful of the Fen sports, and the favourite of many Fen in the Heinlein Society. It's been likened to a combination of ballet, tai chi chu'an, and rhythmic gymnastics; team performances add elements of synchronized swimming. Judges award points for perfection of form, originality of routine, and grace of movement.

Jeanne's Dance is held every May 30 to commemorate the passing of the First Stardancer. All are welcome to take part.

Winry Rockbell is the best-known solo zero-g gymnast - her growing fame has popularized the sport she practices for relaxation.