Roofballers: a Homebrew Sports Crew for Blades in the Dark

Have you played Blades in the Dark, yet?

I saw a comment on Reddit about sports in Doskvol and u/LozNewman wrote the following little bit of magic and I couldn’t help but get crazy inspired.

A crazy combination of parkour and rugby.
Goals are hundreds of meters apart, if the ball touches the ground, it’s “dead” and forces a new kick-off. If a player touches the ground, they have to go touch their goal before they can re-enter play (yes, sprinting along the ground is fine). The ball can be thrown, kicked , or punched. The same goes for your opponents. You can’t throw the ball forward, only sideways or back. Short “Rags” (Rope-and-grapnels) are allowed to cross large gaps between roofs, and are often used on enemy players.
Betting pools are encouraged, but 10% of all winnings goes to the home-owners to pay for repairs. Ditto 10% for player’s medical care.
Winner get reputation, and part of the winnings. Losers get bruises and a much smaller part. The bookies get a part, and are death-on-wheels towards “informal” betting.
Teams can be anything up to thirty people.
Informal games can be any number of players.
Some people become city-wide famous in very short spaces of time. Death is not uncommon.

u/LozNewman 13/7/2020

If that doesn’t give you a crazy sense of high-flying adventure against terrifying ghost-punk Victorian danger and wacky themed teams on the rainslick rooftops of a crumbling city awash in vice and murder, I can’t help you. If you read that and go: Yes, I would play that, then I’ve got a crewbook for you.

Sure, in Doskvol, you can be assassins or thieves or swaggering bravos or hidden cultists or whatever. But wouldn’t it be cooler if we were the Mighty Ducks of Doskvol?


Illicit Sports Stars and Neighborhood Heroes

You play roofball, the closest thing to a municipal pastime the Dusk ever saw. At it’s core, the game is a crazy combination of parkour and rugby. It’s got rules, but they’re just as fluid as the law when you’re a Scoundrel. Get the ball from here to there, don’t touch the street, don’t get dead. How’s that?

When you play Roofballers, you gain xp when you execute a successful roofball match, support your neighborhood, or humiliate a rival.


Head in the Game– Each PC may add +1 action rating to Prowl, Survey, or Finesse

Patron– When you advance your tier, it costs half the COIN it normally would.

Just Like We Practiced– You can use teamwork maneuvers with any teammate, regardless of where they are on the field.

Supporters Everywhere– Friends are as good as Territory. Treat up to three +3 faction statuses you hold as if they are turf.

Ghost Motion– From harsh experience or occult ritual, every member of the team has discovered how to move in supernatural ways. Crew members gain the ability to interact with the ghostly structures, streets, and objects within the echo of Doskvol that exists in the ghost field.

Goons– The Crew has been toughened by cruel experience. You get +1d to resistance rolls.

Last Minute Save– Your crew members can push themselves to dramatically interpose themselves when the opposing team is about to score.

Starting Upgrades

Training: Prowess

Rags: Climbing Gear Costs No Load

Crew Upgrades

Roofball Rigging– You get 2 free load worth of gear or armor.

Home Field Advantage– Your Tier is effectively +1 higher when on your home turf.

Elite Thugs– Your hooligans play a little rougher than others. Thugs in your employ are effectively +1 tier higher.

Elite Rooks– Your bookies are peerless cons and your fans will slip you information about the other teams. Rooks in your employ are effectively +1 tier higher.

Hardened– Each PC gets +1 Trauma Box. This upgrade costs three upgrades to unlock, not just one.


Prima gambler (Perhaps a source of information on the other teams or a fan who lost it all betting on you?)

Morgana promoter (Perhaps they set up your breakout match or work to get you blackballed?)

Embrya devoted fan (Loves the game like no other and might know all the strategies. Are they your fan?)

Briska tinkerer (Perhaps a source of new equipment to give you an edge?)

Marcellusa judge (The ref who calls the game in your favor or a magistrate who turns a blind eye?)


Gambling Den– +2 Coin when losing matches.

Bluecoat Confederates– -2 Heat when playing on home turf.

Merchandising– Rep can be traded during payoff for Coin

Tavern– Your Thugs may gain the wild, savage, or unreliable flaw for the duration of a Score but gain +1 potency

Diehard Fans– +2 Rep when winning against working class teams

Wealthy Patrons– +2 to Coin when winning against high-class teams

Infirmary– +1d to healing rolls

Good Press– +1d on Social engagements

Trophy Room– At any time during downtime, roll dice equal to your Tier. You earn rep equal to your highest result, minus your heat.

Training Rooms– Your cohorts gain +1 scale, extra training allows them to behave like a much larger gang.

The pretty crew sheet might be forthcoming, but something about playing the Doskvol equivalent of the Mighty Ducks made me not want to wait until the art-department got ahold of this. I needed to get it to the table. If you run it, let me know how it handles!

Take care, Scoundrels.

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3 Responses

  1. Navi says:

    I just want to say… I don’t think I want to know anyone who doesn’t think being a parkour hooligan in a city of ghosts isn’t the most awesome idea for a game ever. I did not know I needed this, but now I need to run it immediately.

  2. Xero. says:

    Did you ever play this and how did it go? I wanted to make a Rollerball-esque FitD back but seems like you may have already nailed it 🙂

    • Drake says:

      Only as a one-shot unfortunately, but it worked really well! We built a whole crew-book with rival teams and then started off in the midst of the big Crow’s Foot invitational. Flashing back to sabotaging our rivals, bribing officials, and secreting nasty surprises around the pitch was a blast. Honestly, I want to go back and make a couple of playbooks that lend themselves to this kind of game…our poor Slide was reduced to mugging for the fans and whipping our hooligans into a full-blown riot. It didn’t feel sufficiently Slide-y. But the Star Forward? That might have more legs in this high-flying Roofball game.

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