RetRollSpective – Team Galactic (Updated)

RetRollSpective – Team Galactic (Updated)

Hello and welcome to another edition of RetRollSpective, where I reflect on the history of marble athletes that have been featured in the Marble League. This time, we’re going out of this world to take a look at Team Galactic, a team that originated in the inaugural season of the Marble League. Let’s blast off and discover what this team is made of!

The origins of the team lie in Galakonur, a city renowned for scientific advancement, particularly in the field of astronomy. Cosmo, Astron, Starry, and Pulsar (the four original team members) met while working together at the appropriately named Galactic National Space Center, located in the heart of the city. The four worked as co-workers for about a year and a half, and became great friends who bonded over their love for sports in their youth, and their successes competing in high school and college. In 2014, the city announced that it would be holding an athletics competition, in which teams of four marbles would compete against each other in various disciplines. Cosmo and Astron immediately applied and would invite Starry and Pulsar to complete their quartet of athletes. The four were accepted into the competition, and on 04 October 2014, the four marbles dominated the fray to everyone’s surprise—and perhaps even their own—winning nearly half of all the events and performing well in almost all the others.

Word of their success quickly spread across the region, with the quartet receiving news coverage and praise beyond the city of Galakonur itself. The emergence of not one, but four marble athletes in a region that severely lacked athletic importance resembled the creation of the universe, in that it seemingly came out of nowhere, but was in fact always there, just waiting, patiently, to show itself. This excitement underscored the announcement of a worldwide marble sports tournament a few months later, none other than the 2016 Marble League. The success of the quartet drove the region to almost unanimously nominate Cosmo, Starry, Astron, and Pulsar to compete in the tournament. The team submitted to the ML under the name “Team Galaxy” and were accepted.

However, for some unknown reason, the large, internationally known Galaxy™ corporation saw
this name as a threat to their business and claimed that legal actions would be taken unless the
team changed their name. A news article from a few years later explained,

“…after gaining popularity it got almost sued by the brand “Galaxy™”. After intense
negotiations the team ultimately changed its name to “Team Galactic”, as still known today….A fair amount of followers assumed, wrongly, that the team is being sponsored by the brand and has accepted a partnership. Because of that many supporters bought all kinds of products of the
Galaxy™ brand but most of all the “Galaxy Toothpaste”™.”

The team ultimately complied to this demand and, just days before the opening ceremony, made a slight change to their name, adopting their new identity, “Team Galactic”. As it turns out, this name is also used by a villainous group in one of the Pokémon games; however, GAME FREAK has never expressed an issue with it. In fact, rumors about a promotional event between the two groups were spread through the marble world, but both parties have expressed that no such event is planned to take place.

As one of the original sixteen teams, Team Galactic competed in the first ever Marble League in 2016. The team showed some simulants of potential through the first few events, placing in the middle of the pack. Team Galactic scored their first medal in the fourth event, with Starry getting bronze in the Sand Rally. This put the team at a respectable seventh place overall. Team Galactic continued to place in the top ten throughout most of the following events, getting fourth in the High Jump, notably. However, due to the 2016 scoring system heavily favoring podium finishes, the team finished in eleventh place overall at the conclusion of the 2016 Marble League, tied with the Oceanics in points but behind the team in medal count. Team Galactic was disappointed, but ready to do better in the 2017 Marble League Qualifiers.

And better they did. Team Galactic truly blasted off in the Qualifiers, taking a bronze medal during the Funnel Spinning and placing high consistently to rank third for qualification overall. The sky no longer seemed to be the limit for what Team Galactic could achieve, and the team was ecstatic to participate in the 2017 MarbleLympics. Astron noted:

“We’re really happy with how things have gone, you know, with restructuring and training. We’re optimistic to step into this season and leap up to the top of the standings.”

You can imagine, then, that Team Galactic was shocked when they scored dead last in the first event and fifteenth in the second event, which, of course, landed them in last place overall. The team was quite discouraged, but they trusted that their season was far from out of their control. In the third event, Team Galactic finally put eight more points on the board, jumping up to eighth place, and in the fifth event, they got a much-desired gold medal with Starry’s performance in Hurdles. Team Galactic was now in eleventh overall. When asked, Starry could barely speak, she was so excited:

“Completely unexpected…my heart is full.”

Over the coming events, Team Galactic notably scored fourth in the seventh event, Block Pushing, fifth in the ninth event, Steeplechase, and earned their second gold medal with Starry’s incredible run in the last event, the Sand Race. Although the team sat in eleventh place heading into the final event, Starry’s gold medal raised the team to fifth place overall for the conclusion of the 2017 Marble League. In a show of love for her team, Starry invited her teammates onto the top step of the podium with her to celebrate the gold medal, and cemented her status as one of the most successful Marble athletes in history.

“LOOK AT TEAM GALACTIC!” Greg Woods exclaimed. “Look at Team Galactic, they are going to win the race! O’rangers…lose the battle, but win the war. The O’rangers…lose out to Team Galactic right at the end…”

Team Galactic was flying high into the 2018 Marble League, as placing in the top five made many fans gravitate towards the team. After showing signs of promise in the previous year, Team Galactic rocketed through the 2018 Winter Marble League Qualifiers and qualified before the final event by medaling in the first three events: Curling, Snow Rally, and 5m Ice Dash.

Many expected to see Galactic as a championship contender for the year. However, things didn’t go as the team had hoped.

Instead of continuing off their success in the qualifiers, the team faltered badly and ended up spending most of the season in the bottom half of the standings. Their only medal would end up being a silver in the Bobsleigh, despite a penalty point. The team was showing decent performances, but certainly not of the caliber that many were expecting to see. In the penultimate event, Ice Hockey, Pulsar’s younger brother, Quasar, played goalie, making his Marble League debut as the team reserve. Upon reaching the semifinal, Galactic only needed to win one of their next two matches to secure a medal. Instead, the team dropped both the semifinal game and the third place game, leaving them with yet another near miss in fourth place. Team Galactic entered the final event, once again, in eleventh place. Instead of once again getting a gold in the finale to salvage their season, Cosmo got caught up in the moguls and ended up going out in the first round, completing the disappointing season for the team. They would end up finishing in 11th overall, the same result from 2016. Needless to say, the team and fans alike were extremely disappointed in the outcome. As the captain of the team, Cosmo was hit especially hard, feeling that all of the team’s fans had probably lost most, if not all their faith in him. There were discussions of Team Galactic being dissolved over the offseason, but ultimately the team announced that they would return for the 2019 games.

The offseason demonstrated promise for Team Galactic with a fourth place finish in the 100 meter Water Marble Race and by making it to the semifinals in the A-maze-ing Marble Race before being eliminated. The 2019 Marble League Qualifiers brought Team Galactic a second place victory overall, helped by its gold medal in the Underwater Race when the team tied with Hazers. Galactic earned the distinction of “Preseason Champions” after this, referring to their unparalleled consistency in all three Qualifiers. Pulsar was flattered after hearing this, stating:

“We really try to go beyond what we think is possible for us offseason training, because it sets a good precedent for the rest of the season. It proved successful for us in ML17, and maybe not so successful in ML18, but we’re convinced that this is the best way to run our team. And we’re grateful that you all agree. Hard work pays off.”

Nevertheless, fans of the team had learned not to become too optimistic about the team’s potential during the main tournament. Team Galactic’s fourth appearance in the Marble League began with finishes in middle of the pack in the first six events, missing many opportunities to break through for a medal. Redemption finally came for the team in the form of Block Pushing, where Galactic was finally able to medal in an event that they had reached the finals in during the 2017 Marble League. Team Galactic now had their second silver medal.

Despite the water portion being cancelled in the Triathlon, Pulsar was able to make it to the final before being blocked out of a medal by two of the other three finalists. At the halfway point, Team Galactic stood in third place overall, by far their highest placement in Marble League history. However, things would take a turn for the worse. Starry suffered a minor internal injury from the collision in Block Pushing, which rendered her unable to compete in the Hurdles race, an event she won two years ago. Quasar instead competed in the event, beginning a slew of subpar results for Team Galactic in several of the last Marble League events, with the exception of Rafting.

For the third year in a row, the team entered the final event sitting in eleventh place. The final event was another event that Starry had previously won, the Sand Rally, but she wouldn’t compete in this one either, as her hard crash in the Dirt Race had exhausted her energy. Although Coach Black Hole had made admittedly questionable decisions about substituting marbles in events such as the Underwater Race and Hurdles, his decision to put Cosmo in the event turned out to be a great decision, for Cosmo had been running sand races with Starry for about a year. With a great burst of speed reminiscent of Starry’s gold medal burst two years prior, Cosmo, true to his status as the “jack of all trades” on the team, managed to pass several marbles in the final stretch and finish the race in second, only behind Tumult from the Balls of Chaos. This silver caused Galactic to jump three spots in the final standings, finishing the year in eighth place. After the closing ceremony concluded, the team celebrated Cosmo winning his first medal along with everything else they accomplished over the season.

“I know there’s a lot of fans that questioned my leadership during the second half of the season, and I’m really sorry for that,” Black Hole reflected. “We didn’t focus a lot on endurance training this season, and I guess that’s ironic, considering that I used to be Astron’s track coach. We’re going to be better next season. I promise.”

As it turned out, Team Galactic would not need to defend its mantle as “Preseason Champions”. Coach Black Hole submitted a hosting bid for the team shortly after the end of the 2019 Marble League, unbeknownst to the team’s members, and Team Galactic was announced as the hosts for the 2020 Marble League at the end of the Marble League Showdown on 13 September 2019. The team at first thought it was a joke, but was ecstatic to hear confirmation from their coach that it was true. In fact, Astron did not even know of the teaser image that was posted months prior to the official announcement, as he was on a special mission commissioned by the Galactic National Space Center to visit the International Space Marble orbiting around Earth. Astron returned to Earth just yesterday, celebrating his second space adventure along with the hosting announcement with his teammates. He, notably, is the only marble athlete that has ever been in space.

In RetRollSpective, Team Galactic has come a long way since its inception in the 2016 Marble League. Starry’s two gold medals has made her one of the most celebrated Marble athletes, and the team as a whole has performed exceptionally in qualifiers, proving that Galactic has astronomical potential. Perhaps the fact that the team does not have to worry about qualifiers means that they will be able to conserve their energy for the main season, but we will have to wait and see until then. Best of luck to Team Galactic as the 2020 Marble League approach, keep on rolling!

The lore for Team Galactic has been created with the great help of Novawolf!

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Tide Out: The Oceanics’ State of Affairs in the 2019 MarbleLympics

Tide Out: The Oceanics’ State of Affairs in the 2019 MarbleLympics

Dearest Oceanics Fans,

First of all, we acknowledge and sympathize with your disappointment by the Oceanics’ performance in the 2019 MarbleLympics. We oversaw their training in the Seven Seas Stadium as its construction neared completion, and can confirm that the team trained well enough for the events that would be offered. The Oceanics took on an immense challenge this season by offering water events in the tournament—these being types of events that the team typically does not fare well in. Unfortunately, as demonstrated by the results of this year’s MarbleLympics, it seems that their endeavors were anything but successful.

The Royal Family of Dunduei has treasured the spirit that the Oceanics have brought to Oceania, and we desire to reinvigorate the determination and morale of the team, as well as you, the fans, who were heartbroken this season. In order to preserve this spirit, and perhaps better it, the Royal Family has agreed to purchase the Oceanics from Tide, who was not only the team’s coach, but the team’s owner. We will retain the team’s manager, Reef, and the team’s new coach, Lagoon, as a part of this acquisition. Additionally, this purchase includes ownership of the Seven Seas Stadium, which will now operate under the Royal Seal of Dunduei, and be protected under such securities.

This was not an easy decision for the Royal Family to make. We have been struggling during the past few months due to the previously unannounced sickness of Queen Marina, who, as you may have noticed, has not appeared at the proper 2019 MarbleLympics events and ceremonies. In the interim, King Triton has been ruling over the region alone, with no desire to replace his wife, regardless of the strain that ruling alone has placed on him. In witnessing the Oceanics continue to perform poorly in the 2019 MarbleLympics, Her Majesty, distraught, has urged the King to act. In this manner, His Majesty shall do so, honoring his wife’s wishes as well as the wishes of the region, and perhaps of the world.

The Royal Family of Dunduei

Hey guys! Stynth reporting. The JMRC received an important letter from the Royal Family of Dunduei today…and wow, does it seem to be a doozy. After months of witnessing the Oceanics’ fall from grace during the 2019 MarbleLympics, it seems that even the Royal Family has gotten involved. In fact, they’ve worked out an agreement with the team’s former coach, Tide, to purchase the team from him entirely. How did this come to be, you ask? We interviewed the Oceanics themselves to discuss this recent development in marble sports news.

“We knew that we were taking on a big risk,” Reef, the team’s manager, echoed from the letter. “However, in consulting with MarbleLympics officials, we realized that only by offering water events could we offer our greatest potential as hosts for the 2019 MarbleLympics. That opportunity was there for us, and we took it.”

“I was brought on to the team in late 2018,” recalled Bay. “The Oceanics got wind from the officials that it was a conflict of interest if the coach of a team was also an active member of a team, and Tide stepped away from his reserve position. I was already being sponsored by Tide in the Oceania Surfing League, so he brought me on to support the team in the 2019 MarbleLympics.”

Things were looking good for the Oceanics prior to the 2019 MarbleLympics. The team won the Friendly Round before it was even over, having secured enough points to win in the first three events and being able to afford a finish in dead last for the final event, the Underwater Race. Fans were optimistic that the team’s success in the Friendly Round would translate to high results in the main tournament, at least for regular events. The call for #TidePride had never been louder.

“It’s not like we didn’t train,” Ocean explained. “We were a little conflicted when the stadium was under construction, but once it was completed, we dove in. I’d be lying if I said that everything was okay, though. That something didn’t feel off.”

“The team didn’t feel the same. Our mojo was thrown off because Tide wasn’t competing on the team anymore, and not only that. He didn’t coach as well when we wasn’t competing on the team. He didn’t see where we were struggling,” said Sea.

“He didn’t see that we were struggling,” Shore assured.

The first blow to the Oceanics’ morale came in the first event of the main tournament, when Ocean came last in her heat, in front of His Majesty King Triton and over the commentary of Greg Woods, exclaiming “Oceanics, ah, they’re going to finish last again in an underwater event. They will not move on.” The team began the 2019 MarbleLympics with three points, and over the course of the next five events, secured bottom-half finishes in four of those five in order to sit at the bottom of the standings at the end of the sixth event, Relay Race. One of those finishes included a dead-last performance in the fourth event, Gravitrax Slalom.

Although Tide declined to comment for this feature, we were able to interview him shortly after the Relay Race, an event in which the Oceanics won in the Friendly Round. He had this to say to us:

“You know, the way we see it, this would look worse on the team if this year’s season was only twelve events long. We’re not at the halfway point yet, and we still have a chance to bring this home—literally.”

Unfortunately, the team was still in a bad place by the time the tenth event, Maze, rolled around. Although the Oceanics managed to keep out of last place, they were still in second-to-last place, only above the Pinkies, a team which is notorious in the MarbleLympics for being in last place at the end of two of the tournaments.

“Suffice it to say that we were not impressed with the team’s performance,” Reef stated. “We didn’t consider being better than the Pinkies much of an accomplishment…until we weren’t.”

Although the Oceanics reached the finals in the Maze, the team squandered their high odds of medaling when they finished in fourth place. In the next event, Dirt Race, Shore made it to the final race, but bounced off the course, finishing in seventh and returning the Oceanics to last place overall.

The Pinkies medaled in both events.

“Morale was at an all-time low for us…or in hindsight, it wasn’t even as low as it was at the end of the season,” Aqua said, dismally. “We tried to muster up what we had left during Rafting. We thought we did well, until ten other teams ended up doing better than us.”

That cemented the Oceanics’ fate in the season. “The Oceanics in the meantime, cruelly, they become the first team who will not be able to win the MarbleLympics,” noted Greg Woods as the updated standings appeared on the scoreboard.

The next event, the Elimination Race, appropriately saw two of the Oceanics get eliminated—the team member who participated in the event, Sea, and the coach of the team, Tide.

“I was sitting near Coach Tide when he was removed from the grandstands. Reef and Alvin rolled over to us with a bunch of stadium security marbles, and Reef fired him on the spot. It seemed as if he had been planning to fire him for a time, at least for a few weeks,” one of the other team’s coaches, who asked to remain anonymous, reported. “What made it particularly awkward is that Tide owned the team, but Reef was the manager, and thus had the authority to relieve Tide of his coach duties.”

“I had to do what was best for the team,” Reef added. “Tide was our weakest link, especially when it came to training for the water events. We were going to wait until the season was over to make an action, but after the first heat of the Elimination Race, I lost my cool.”

From there, Reef brought Lagoon in as the new coach of the Oceanics, while Tide’s hands were figuratively tied. He tried to fire Reef as manager, but this proved futile when the Royal Family got involved. Regardless, the Oceanics’ performance in the 2019 MarbleLympics did not improve, and the team finished the season with the worst points average of any team in MarbleLympics history. When asked about this, Reef had this to say:

“This season has been one of the most difficult seasons that any team has had to experience. You need to have a clear and positive mindset in order to compete in a tournament as demanding as the MarbleLympics, and between their stress in hosting, changes in coaching, and the loss of support from their fans, the Oceanics couldn’t do as well as they wanted to. It’s sad. And it’s even more sad that we let down our fans on our home turf. They had every right to be disappointed in us.”

“I still believe in our team, though,” said Sea, after a long pause from the team. “We hit rock bottom this year—there’s no denying that. But it was still an honor to host and to be a part of the MarbleLympics for another year. That’s what matters above all, and in order to continue that, we’re going to work hard next year on ourselves—mentally, emotionally, and physically— to qualify and to prove our worth again in competition.”

We thank the Oceanics for participating in this interview and hold the utmost respect for them for holding their heads high during this difficult time. Upon further investigation, it seems that the Royal Family has offered Tide a hefty sum for the rights to the Oceanics and their stadium— apparently an offer that he could not refuse. It would be foolish to assume that we have seen the last of Tide’s influence in marble sports, and it would be even more foolish to assume that Tide is not salty about letting the Oceanics go, even for the amount of money he got for them. After all, it was his influence on the team that led to their best performance yet in the MarbleLympics…along with their worst.

Tide is out, and royalty is in…where will this lead the Oceanics in 2020? We’ll just have to wait and sea. Thank you for reading this Marble Sports Blog feature, and keep on rolling!

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RetRollSpective – Oceanics

Hello and welcome to the seventh ever RetRollSpective, where I reflect on the history of marble athletes that have been featured in the MarbleLympics. This time, we’re going to wade over to the Oceanics, the host team of the 2019 MarbleLympics.

As four-time veterans of the MarbleLympics, the Oceanics have been a staple of the MarbleLympics since the beginning. That said, like a wave forming in the ocean, the team originated out of nowhere. Aqua, Sea, Shore, and Ocean grew up as childhood friends in the cultural capital of Dunduei. They all worked at a surf shop in a nearby town when they were teenagers, which was odd because none of them knew how to surf. They all loved to hang out on the beach, but they weren’t so keen on going into the water, unless they needed to cool off. None of the Oceanics learned how to swim until they were preparing for the MarbleLympics, which likely explains why the team has a bad performance record in water events.

The friends discovered their passion for marble sports at dawn one morning, as they brought the surfboards out to be cleaned before the day’s rentals. On the way out, Shore dragged one of the surfboards in the sand, creating a long path. When Ocean brought her board out, she saw the path leading to the water, and decided to have some fun.

“I thought it would be like a slide. I always enjoyed going on the playground when I was a kid,” Ocean recalled to us. “The four of us have been friends forever. We don’t mind playing around ever now and then. It’s part of who we are. So I went down the path, and I couldn’t stop myself. There weren’t any rails to clutch to. It felt so free, so exhilarating. I wanted to feel that feeling for the rest of my life.”

When Ocean reached the bottom, she told Shore about the racetrack she had found, and had him race down it. Shore knew that he had accidentally made the track, but he didn’t tell Ocean or any of the others about it. The release of this article will be the first time they all find out how it was made.

Needless to say, the friends were stoked. They decided to close the shop for the day, and test out the course, extending it until the point that it would be washed away by the tide. The day turned into another day, then the entire week, before Aqua made the executive decision to sell the boards and go into training. The friends never looked back.

The 2016 MarbleLympics were announced about two years later, after the friends were already competing in regional competitions in Oceania with teams such as the Turtle Sliders. They immediately jumped at the opportunity, requesting to be admitted into the competition. But they froze when the application asked for a team name.

The team had previously been going as Team Moana, which means “ocean” in Maori. However, they feared copyright strikes from Disney, as well as the chance that people might not know or accept their name, as it came from a culture that most people did not recognize. Sea took it upon himself to choose a new name for the team. He considered Team Liquid, but upon hearing that it was an e-sports team, he instead chose the name Oceanics. It was “Westernized” enough to where marbles would recognize it, but so could the team members, as part of their identity living and working with the ocean.

The Oceanics, admitted to the 2016 MarbleLympics, traveled to the “home of marble sports” to compete, ecstatic about the chance to prove themselves against teams around the world. However, the team went scoreless after the first event, where they received only one point, until the ninth event, Team Pursuit, where they earned a gold medal. The Oceanics’ morale was renewed, and they went on to get a silver medal in Quartet Diving (a water event) and another point in Hurdles before finishing the season in tenth place, which was better than any members of the team could have hoped for at the halfway point of the season.

They were determined to not give up, and rode their wave of eagerness into the 2017 MarbleLympics Qualifications, scoring a silver medal in the Sand Race and qualifying in fourth place. When asked about that preseason event, Shore remembered it fondly:

“That feeling when I went down that path, for the first time…I felt a hint of it again that day. It felt amazing. And we couldn’t wait to channel that energy…to raise the wave into the 2017 MarbleLympics.”

Although the Oceanics started out strong with the first event, earning a silver medal in Funnel Spinning and a bronze medal in the 5 meter sprint, the team continued to struggle in consistently staying in the top half of events. They did have two fifth-place finishes, back-to-back, but a disappointing last-place finish in Archery spelled doom for the team. They finished in eleventh place with ninety-nine points, unable to crack triple-digits and shut out of the top ten. While ninety-nine points looked better in writing than the nineteen points they had accumulated in 2016, the Oceanics, dejected, returned to their homeland quietly.

Many saw the team as a staple in the MarbleLympics by this time, but a staple that had never really seen success. It was at this point that the team came into contact with Tide, who was, at the time, promoting marble sports competitions in Mellacai, a major city in science and architecture. Tide personally reached out to the team and offered to train them for the 2018 Winter MarbleLympics Qualification. The team did not hesitate.

“I saw a ton of potential in them. I could tell they really loved to compete, but they weren’t showing it, because they didn’t know how to. They didn’t exude the feeling that they wanted to be champions. But I knew they did. And I helped them work towards it.”

Tide bought the Oceanics outright, funding their flights to Mellacai and beginning training with them. During this period of time, the Oceanics stayed out of the public eye completely. Press releases surfaced detailing the addition of a reserve team member, Bay, as well as the construction of the Seven Seas Stadium on Neptune Island in Dunduei, but that was all that the public heard about the team until the Draw.

The Oceanics placed into Group B of Qualifiers and immediately surprised fans by placing first in Curling. The team did not finish the Snow Rally, but a fifth place finish in the 5m Ice Dash and another first place finish in the Halfpipe event allowed the team to coast to the 2018 Winter MarbleLympics at the top of Group B. Their performance did not go unnoticed by the fans, as well as other MarbleLympics teams. Pinky Toe from the Pinkies remarked,

“They weren’t competition in the past two MarbleLympics. Granted, 2016 was a rough season for all of us, but they never had a chance to come close to the top five last year. Do they this year? It might be possible. We better watch out.”

The Oceanics did not let up. They earned a gold medal in the 5m Ice Dash, the first event of the main tournament and an immediate improvement from their performance in Qualifiers. The hashtag #TidePride echoed their victory on social media, and their fanbase began to make waves.

Although the Oceanics missed the podium for the next few events, they were able to stay consistently in the top ten for all events but one. The Oceanics’ next medal was a bronze in Team Pursuit, an event which they also set a new MarbleLympics record for during one of the heats. When asked about this, Aqua could barely stop smiling:

“This season has given me a wave of excitement through every event, with every time we get to compete. Competing together is a special treat. We’ve known each other for our entire lives and to get to do what we do together is a privilege. We take none of it for granted.”

The team did not fare well in the next two events, placing fourteenth and fifteenth, but regained their momentum in Curling, earning a gold medal and proving their dominance in the event, which they had already asserted during Qualifiers. A fifth place finish in the Biathlon and a seventh place finish in Ice Hockey kept the team at the top of the standings…until the final event.

“They got a little too headstrong,” Tide shook himself in disappointment. “I really thought they’d be able to pull through. If they had made it into the final heat of that last event, they would’ve been unstoppable.”

But the Oceanics let up too soon. Ocean, the captain of the team, couldn’t control herself in the Sand Mogul Race. It wasn’t the same as the path that the surfboard had created, straight down the beach of Dunduei. It was contoured at different points, and she tried, desperately, to claw onto the edge of the track. Bouncing off it too much, Ocean finished in fourth of four in the semifinal race, meaning she would not make it to the final race. When the Midnight Wisps and Savage Speeders crossed the line in the next semifinal race, Ocean looked away.

“The Oceanics can still win if the Savage Speeders miss the podium and if the Midnight Wisps get bronze,” Greg Woods commented.

“But I knew. There was no way the Savage Speeders were going to miss the podium,” Ocean recalled. “Everyone on the team just looked blankly at me. Our fans fell silent. High tide was gone.”

A few minutes later, the Oceanics took the podium for third place overall in the 2018 Winter MarbleLympics.

That night, the five team members sat quietly in their hotel room. After some time, Sea finally spoke up.

“You know, I haven’t lost hope yet.”

Admittedly, the team struggled for a few months to rebuild their morale. The Oceanics did not perform well in either of the two offseason events, but their training was not focused on doing well in either event. They began to train in the Seven Seas Stadium as construction entered its final phase, with Coach Tide, Queen Marina, and mascot Alvin supervising. At the end of the A-maze-ing Marble Race, the Oceanics were revealed as hosts for the 2019 MarbleLympics. Mandarin from the O’rangers, allegedly, did not respond well to this news. A fan overheard him saying:

“You mean to tell me that after all we’ve done for the MarbleLympics, the IMC decided to pick a team that only did well last season to host the tournament? You know what, I don’t understand the IMC. We should form the OMC: the Orange Marble Sports Committee. That’ll be less biased against us for sure.”

The O’rangers, in a joint statement, denied the validity of this statement, but Oceanics fans doubted the statement. A small rivalry between the O’rangers and Oceanics began to manifest, but it is worth noting that the rivalry between the Turtle Sliders and the Oceanics may prove to be more volatile in future seasons.

The Oceanics won Funnel Spinning and the Relay Race in the Friendly Round, and were able to edge out the O’rangers by one point despite finishing last in the Underwater Race. Fans began to question the Oceanics’ performance in water events, noting that they had consistently been low since the 2017 MarbleLympics. We hope that this article could explain why.

In RetRollSpective, the Oceanics are a team that has reached high tide in the MarbleLympics fanbase and improved noticeably in the past three years. As Coach Tide does, we sea great potential in the future of the team, both as friends and as potential champions. Best of luck to the Oceanics in the 2019 MarbleLympics, keep on rolling!

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RetRollSpective – O’rangers

RetRollSpective – O’rangers

Hello and welcome to the sixth ever RetRollSpective, where I reflect on the history of marble athletes that have been featured in the MarbleLympics. This time, we’re going to cover the O’rangers, one of the first teams of the MarbleLympics, and arguably one of its best.

The O’rangers are not just a team—they are a family of marbles with strong Dutch heritage that has dominated for generations. The O’Marbles run an orange farm along the Floridian panhandle, also specializing in bull-wrangling and, notably, off-road racing. The current patriarch of the family, Mandarin, has emphasized this last aspect more and more in recent years, especially with the rise of televised marble sports. This drive, this passion led Mandarin to found the O’rangers with his brothers Clementin, Kinnowin, Tangerin, and his sister, Orangin, in 2006, and the team began participating in local competitions shortly thereafter. 

The O’rangers performed well enough over the next two years to draw attention from a marble troupe of teams, named the Fruit Circuit. After surveying the O’Marbles Farm (to verify that the O’rangers were fruit-based) the Fruit Circuit allowed the team to join the troupe. The O’rangers remained on the troupe for eight years until the Fruit Circuit’s demise in 2016, with the rise of the MarbleLympics. The team was in fourth place, closely behind Mellow Yellow, Raspberry Racers, and the Limers, when the Raspberry Racers DNF’d in the final race. The O’rangers finished the race modestly, but with enough points to pass the Racers and move into third place behind Mellow Yellow in second and the Limers in first. The O’rangers’ third place finish qualified them in the 2016 MarbleLympics. 

However, the O’rangers were skeptical of the competition that lay ahead of them. To test the waters, Mandarin, Clementine, Kinnow, and Tangerine went undercover in the first event of the MarbleLympics, going under the names of O1, O2, O3, and O4 to compete. The four placed ninth, scoring no points for the O’rangers. Seeing that the competition was serious, Mandarin, Clementin, Kinnowin, and Tangerin replaced their cousins in the second event and represented the O’rangers for the rest of the 2016 MarbleLympics. Their true identities were reflected in the reupload of the 2016 MarbleLympics in 2019, with the graphics displaying the correct names of the team instead of O1-4.

The O’rangers did not score any points until the third event, where they placed fifth and got three points. The team earned a gold medal in Long Jump with Kinnowin representing the team, breaking the record at 103,8 centimeters. Although the O’rangers did not get another medal in 2016, they got enough fourth and fifth place finishes in the next few events to secure an overall fifth place finish at the end of the tournament. They had landed eight points away from taking fourth place, and just one point above the Rojo Rollers in sixth, a team with three medals to its name.

The O’rangers patted themselves on the back for a successful season, but knew in their hearts that they wanted more. This became apparent at the O’Marbles Farm when Mandarin announced plans to build an official marble racing speedway on the property, which would remove a few acres of orange trees. Surprisingly, the town had little complaints regarding the developments. As a local fan put it: 

“This town wouldn’t be here without the O’Marbles. They didn’t just help our business boom back in the day, they were our business, and we’d be lying if we said that they aren’t to this day. Their orange business is the immigrant success story that American marbles dream of telling, and their racing business is on another level of greatness. They’re really active in the community and we support them every step of the way. OOOOOOOOOOOO!” 

The team performed well in Qualifiers, getting a bronze medal in the Relay Race and ending in third place with more than enough points to qualify. It was then that the O’rangers began to get recognized as a serious contender for competition in the 2017 MarbleLympics, and the team experienced a large surge in fans. When the first of July came around, the stands were packed with a swath of fans in orange, holding signs and howling “OOOOOOOOOOOO!”. Needless to say, the O’rangers and their fans were hoping for a strong season, but they had no idea exactly how great things were going to turn out. 

This is not to say that the team dominated throughout 2017; this was in fact quite the opposite. The team’s famed rivals, Savage Speeders, dominated in the earlier half of the season, rising to the top 3 in the standings. But the O’rangers remained persistent. They continued to train even during the MarbleLympics, and finally, in the fifth event, they earned a bronze medal and landed a spot on the podium. As the Savage Speeders ascended to the top of the standings, the O’rangers positioned themselves in seventh place, rising three spots. They stopped training immediately and took pause. Conserving their energy. 

It was a strategy that did not work out in the short run. The next event saw the Speeders get a gold medal while the O’rangers lagged behind in fourteenth. Their Fruit Circuit rivals, the Limers, had actually taken second overall in the standings as the O’rangers dropped to ninth. Suddenly, a comeback didn’t seem so feasible. And then, it did.

Their first place in Block Pushing, their first gold medal of the 2017 season in the seventh event, and a new record to boot, launched the team into fourth place overall, four points behind the Limers and nearly a gold medal within reach of the Savage Speeders. The fans were ecstatic as they poured out of the stands, and the security officers could barely hold them back. It was a real energy that drove them, and it inspired the team itself to keep pushing. 

Mandarin immediately followed up his team’s success in Block Pushing with a silver medal in the High Jump, which vaulted the team into second place, now less than a silver medal behind the Savage Speeders. The team that once seemed to be sweeping the competition had now lost its insurmountable lead, within two events. The top of the standings was in sight for the O’rangers. 

The Savage Speeders and Mellow Yellow, however, had finally realized the momentum of the O’rangers, and in the next event, both teams got gold and silver, respectively, denying the O’rangers an early victory. At the end of the ninth event, the standings looked oddly similar to the end of the 2016 MarbleLympics: the Speeders were in first, Mellow Yellow was in second, and even Team Momo was in fourth place. O’rangers clung to third, their fate hanging in the balance.

“You know what I’ve realized over the years? It’s that nothing is really set in stone when you’re competing,” Mandarin noted, years later. “Just when you think something is going to go one way, it ends up going in a way you’d never think it to. That’s the beauty of marble racing. Always unpredictable. Keeps us on our game, always striving to be the best that we can be even when things seem blight.”

And strive they did. In the tenth event, the O’rangers closed in on Mellow Yellow’s place in second, remaining in third by two points. In the eleventh event, the Underwater Race, O’rangers set another new record in one of the heats and finished in second place, securing second place in the standings and becoming one of two teams able to win the 2017 MarbleLympics. Of course, that other team was the Savage Speeders.

O’rangers needed at least eleven points to overtake the Savage Speeders in the final event, if the latter team scored no points. The Savage Speeders are a team known to be fast, one of the best teams at racing. The final event was the Sand Rally. 

The O’rangers and their fans held their breath, watching the first heat of the event. They hoped for a miracle.

 Swifty of the Savage Speeders, once in the top four needed to advance, was swiftly falling back in the line of marbles racing to the finish. He reached dead last by the middle of the race and didn’t rebound back. The fans were shocked. 

“I don’t think our championship leaders are going to advance at this point. It would take a massive lunge for them to get up there!” Greg Woods exclaimed. “The finish line is nearly in sight, now—no, the Savage Speeders will not advance! They will not make it into the final, and they have to hope that that ten-point lead they have amassed over the course of these eleven events is going to be big enough to survive the twelfth…” 

Clementin was already in the starting gate. The loudspeakers were booming, Greg Woods’ voice ringing out the names of the teams moving on. The ball bearing lunged forward, released the bar, and Clementin bolted forward in the lead. As Greg Woods told the fans about the Jungle Jumpers missing the event, the O’Marble didn’t care. He kept rolling forward. 

Clementin did not sacrifice his spot in the top four, guaranteeing that he would move on to the final. He said nothing as he traveled back to the starting gate. Again, he lunged forward once the bar was released, eventually securing a dominant lead…in first. As he turned the final curve of the course, Clementin eased up a little bit, allowing Starry of Team Galactic to rush past him and take the gold medal. But it didn’t matter. He had done everything he had to do in the final event. And it paid off.

The O’rangers had won the 2017 MarbleLympics.

A comeback that once seemed impossible. A threshold once out of reach. A championship that shattered the marblebase, right under the Speeders’ noses. And, oh, did the fans scream “OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” for hours. 

The team automatically qualified for the 2018 MarbleLympics upon their win in 2017, but it was their victory tour around the world that the team treasured the most about their win. It was such a big deal for the team that they shut down O’Marbles Farm for the occasion, inviting their entire family on the trip. This caused a month-long decline in orange production, but the world didn’t seem to mind. Celebration was in order, and the team reveled in it. When asked in an interview with Rick O’Shea about how the team would try to replicate their success in 2018, Kinnowin replied:

“We can’t. But that’s what makes our sport great. It can be so unpredictable. It’s never going to feel the same though, because we were the first ones to come from the middle of the pack to win it all. Our names are going to be forever remembered as the ones who, uh, made the greatest comeback in MarbleLympics history.” 

True to Kinnowin’s claim, the O’rangers did not replicate their 2017 success in the 2018 Winter MarbleLympics. The team placed third in the Friendly Round and remained in the upper middle of the pack for most of the season. They were far from on the radar, as the Savage Speeders continued to dominate, the Hazers stunned the competition as the best rookie team since 2016, and the rising waters of the Oceanics tried to turn the tides of the podium. The O’rangers never lost their fans, but it didn’t look like the team would ever be near a second victory. They had no medals to their name after nine events. 

But the team had been consistent in the first nine events, only scoring below eighth place once, in the Halfpipe event. The O’rangers were practicing the same exact strategy that they had the year before. They were conserving their energy. Taking a deep breath, they entered the tenth event, Biathlon, and finished with a silver medal. 

The O’rangers shot up to second in the overall standings.

The marblebase was shocked. After medaling only once, the O’rangers were, once again, formidable competition in the MarbleLympics. The fans, of course, were thrilled. Could the O’rangers really replicate last year’s success? Their “OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” echoed through the Arctic Circle. 

However, the team lost its focus upon getting its silver, its momentum dropping. Although the team was still one of four teams that could win the tournament at the beginning of the final event, the team faltered in the first heat, only earning five points and assuring its fate: it could not win the 2018 Winter MarbleLympics or finish in the top three. While other fans, particularly Speeders fans, were elated, O’rangers fans were understandably distraught. They had still experienced an amazing season, but Kinnowin’s prediction rang true. The O’rangers finished eleven points behind the Oceanics, still placing in fourth, but missing another chance to prequalify…or so they thought.

The O’rangers participated in both offseason events for MarbleLympics teams, training at their Speedway O’Marbles in between. Despite doing well in previous water races, Mandarin failed to replicate his team’s successes with the 100 meter Water Race, for he finished in twentieth out of twenty-seven teams. That said, the O’rangers had a successful showing in the A-maze-ing Marble Race, finishing as runners-up to the Raspberry Racers in first, and ahead of the Savage Speeders in third and the Limers in fourth. The race proved, again, that the O’rangers were a force to be reckoned with in marble sports. 

Although the O’rangers lost their bid for hosting in 2019 to the Oceanics, the team took the Oceanics’ qualification spot, thus automatically qualifying for the second year in a row. In the Friendly Round, the team won both Block Pushing and the Underwater Race, repeating similar successes from the 2017 season. They finished second, just one point behind the Oceanics. 

In RetRollSpective, the O’rangers have not always been the champions that most of the fans perceive them to be. Regardless, the team’s history of comebacks and consistency has assured its place in MarbleLympics history as one of its most persistent competitors, and therefore, one of its best. Whether or not the O’rangers win another MarbleLympics, they have already made their mark on the tournament, and will always be remembered for their accomplishments. Best of luck to the O’rangers in the 2019 MarbleLympics, keep on r-OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO-lling!

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The Teams You’ll Miss In The 2019 MarbleLympics

The Teams You’ll Miss In The 2019 MarbleLympics

Logo: Marblelympics

After months of waiting to see which teams would compete in the 2019 MarbleLympics, we finally know the sixteen teams that have qualified, including the four that prequalified at the end of the 2018 MarbleLympics and the twelve that competed in the 2019 MarbleLympics Qualifiers. And now that we know…that’s it, for three months. These teams will train rigorously for the main tournament, and we’ll be left to speculate who will triumph come April. 

In our theorizing, meme-making, and hype intensifying, we’ll rally behind at least one of the sixteen teams that have qualified, if not all of them. From the two rookie teams, including the newly announced Green Ducks, to four-time veterans such as Savage Speeders, Pinkies, and Team Galactic, each team deserves to prove its worth in the MarbleLympics. They all have something unique to bring to the games, and they have brought their all in order to secure their roles. 

Regardless, there is a certain tragedy with the passing of the Qualifiers each year. There are sixteen spots in the MarbleLympics each year, meaning that if more than twelve teams are seeing to compete, there will be cuts. This has been the case since 2017, when the first Qualifiers were held, and Kobalts, Snowballs, Balls of Chaos, and Rojo Rollers failed to qualify. In 2018, twelve teams failed to qualify (four from each group), the most in a single season yet. 

This year saw a mixture of teams get cut. Some were beloved fan favorites. Others were hoping, after years of being unsuccessful, to finally return to the competition. But none of them can be forgotten. Like the sixteen teams that have qualified, these eight teams all bring something special to the competition. The difference is the effort put in—either it isn’t “their all” or it’s masked by other teams. And so it goes. 

Still, as we await the 2019 MarbleLympics, we would like to reflect on these “forbidden eight”, if you will. They deserve to be heard, and their legacies deserve to be honored. Any team could be in their position right now. 

Torn To Pieces

A loss welcomed by Raspberry Racers and Team Primary fans, Limers were four points short of overcoming the Chocolatiers to qualify. Their presence in Qualifiers was soured when Limers fans starting throwing debris into the Relay Race arena, disrupting the flow of the event and allegedly blocking Team Primary from finishing the race (an allegation that the IMC denies). Needless to say, the fans’ actions in the stands were reckless, and Goolime agreed: 

“We do not condone actions like that—in fact, these types of things distract us too. We’re marble athletes and we’re focused on that—we’re trying to do the best we can. That’s all.” 

Limers did in fact finish in third in that heat, and twelfth place overall in that event. Had their fans not disrupted the flow, the end result could have changed. Instead, the team is missing out on its first MarbleLympics ever. Here’s what Lemonlime had to say about that: 

“I know what the fans are thinking. ‘Wow, Limers finally didn’t qualify. They’ve always been in the bottom half of the standings. They didn’t deserve to be in the MarbleLympics.’ And they have every right to feel that way. Our response is this, plain and simple: we’ve enjoyed the opportunity to compete in these tournaments. We’ve loved to do what we do, no matter how well we’ve placed. It’s been far from perfect, but it doesn’t stop here. Right now, it hurts. But trust me when I say that we’re going to do everything we can to keep pushing. Thank you to the fans. We’ll see you soon.” 

All the best to Limers in the offseason. The team has resilience—and one day, it’ll carry them far.

Still Mo-Motivated

To say that Team Momo has had a difficult time in recent MarbleLympics would be an understatement. From the infamous Fidget Spinner Collision in 2017 to their Bobsleigh woes in 

2018, many hoped that the Momo clan would qualify and have a normal season. They even got a new logo to celebrate, tossing away a logo that many fans reviled as a “stinky green trash bag”. 

The fans were ecstatic during the first event, and held their breath until Mo crossed the finish line in the Underwater Race, never losing hope. But it simply was not Team Momo’s year. The downward spiral of points the team earned in the four events perhaps resembled its downward spiral over the past four years, from earning fourth overall in the 2016 MarbleLympics to missing out on qualifying this year, in 2019, by two places. 

Team Momo initially declined to comment, but we got a call from Momomomo late in the night of 26 January. He sounded tired, perhaps a little sniffly. But I had never heard him more determined: 

“These past two years have been really rough on me. When the medics took me out of the arena, past the view of the fans, and there was a chunk of me missing, I was despondent. I thought I’d never be able to compete again. I couldn’t understand why it had to happen, let alone to me. But life went on. My team put Mimo in, and got three medals that season. Even last year. Team Primary helped us out, and we got two medals. Being part of Team Momo has made me realize something: that I can’t quit when things don’t go my way. So we didn’t qualify this year. That’s not how I wanted things to go, but it’s not going to stop me. And it won’t stop our team from mo-moving forward.” 

We wish Team Momo the best in the offseason, and hope that they will appear in “mo-more” MarbleLympics to come.

Dead Red Redemption

A team with constant fan support in the offseason, Rojo Rollers have been unsuccessful in Qualifiers for the past two seasons, and sadly, this year was no exception. After getting a new logo and being likened to as Mario in the Super Smash Marbles fanart by Instagram artist 

@vinartstudio, Rojo Rollers were thirteen points short of returning to the MarbleLympics for the first time since 2016, a year in which they placed in an impressive sixth place overall. 

Rojo Rollers, admittedly, had a difficult offseason. As the 2018 Sand Marble Rally approached, the new logo for the Rollers was released to the public, displaying a roller skate instead of the traditional red number 3 ball. This disturbed Red Number 3, who thought that the MarbleLympics team was ending its long-standing relationship with him. Rojo Rollers privately met with Red Number 3, assuring him otherwise, and preventing the dissent from reaching the public. 

Needless to say, the confirmation in December that Red Number 3 was not a glass marble ballooned the scale of the controversy and created chaos. In the midst of training for 2019 MarbleLympics Qualifiers, Rojo Rollers had to act quickly and cut its partnership before the team’s reputation was tarnished in relation to Red Number 3. According to Rojo Tres: 

“We had no idea he wasn’t a marble. The drama over this has been astounding, and while we tried to ignore it, we didn’t want to disappoint our fans if they got the impression that we supported fraud. We roll fair and square, except not square, because then we’d be cubes, and cubes aren’t marbles.” 

Best of luck to Rojo Rollers. We hope that Rojo Rollers can move past this difficult offseason and, free of controversy, finally get to focus on the competition they’ve desired to return to for so long.

No-balts

Kobalts, as with Rojo Rollers, have not been in the MarbleLympics since its initial season in 2016, where they placed ninth overall with two silver medals to boot. And while the team replaced half of its members in 2017 with Meepo and Gnome, there seems to be no other reason why Kobalts have not been successful in Qualifiers. The team has had seasons to sync up and 

train together, but it can never seem to synthesize quite right. They also lack experience in Funnel Spinning, an event in which they scored one point in 2017 and one point this year. The team is competent at Block Pushing, as it scored twelve points in 2017 and ten points in 2019, but can never seem to succeed at anything else. 

Kobalts declined to comment. We hope they have a fruitful offseason, one that finally brings the team together to conquer future Qualifiers and MarbleLympics.

Too Tough To Crack

Although its fellow candy team, Chocolatiers, qualified this year after missing the 2018 MarbleLympics, Jawbreakers were unable to replicate such a comeback. Their two silver medals in 2016, landing them in seventh place overall, seemed promising. Their first place in the 2017 Qualifiers Sand Rally event continued this momentum, but it collapsed during the competition later that year when Jawbreakers failed to make the podium. Ending in thirteenth place overall, Jawbreakers were sour. The three former members of the team, Tidbit, Mouthful, and Tongue-Twister, blamed the team’s poor performance on Candy firing and replacing them. Candy’s response? Bitter, to say the least: 

“I was miserable last year [in 2016]. I don’t care how well we placed, you all treated me like I was a cough drop. Sugar, Sweet, and Taffy are all amazing teammates. They listen to me, and no matter what happens, at least we know we’re doing the right thing.” 

Unfortunately, the “right thing” has not bode well for the team, which has now missed two MarbleLympics. We hope that Jawbreakers can find their way and do the right thing in order to return to the MarbleLympics. 

Melted

Though we welcomed Snowballs hosting the 2018 MarbleLympics in the bleak midwinter, we are unfortunately going to miss the team in this year’s competition. One of the more surprising omissions from this year’s roster, after a well-earned seventh place last year, Snowballs seem to have dissolved in the waters of the Oceanics’s home turf. When asked about the stark difference in weather conditions this year, Snowflake noted: 

“It’s something we really tried to prepare against, but we ultimately couldn’t overcome. We know we can do better than that. Maybe if the conditions were fairer…” 

We have no information on whether Snowballs are pursuing legal action against Oceanics and/or the IMC for the event and stadium design. We will report developments as they come forth. Until then, we wish the best to Snowballs and hope they have a chill offseason.

A Fidgety Performance

The team that has rolled under the radar since its formation, perhaps because its name is similar to Savage Speeders in alliteration, Shining Swarm. The team has been notably unsuccessful in Qualifiers for the past two years, despite making it into the 2017 MarbleLympics and earning a gold medal in the Collision event. Shimmer remarked: 

“You know, our fanbase isn’t big. It’s not easy being overshadowed by franchises that are better grounded in the legacy of the MarbleLympics and trying to make your own mark in something as legendary as this competition. We’re a fun bunch and we love what we do. That’s why we were riding the fidget spinners when we were advancing and later won that event. Not everything has to be serious.” 

We appreciate Shining Swarm for taking their own “spin” on the MarbleLympics, and hope to see them again in future years.

Feeling Blue

The team that saved Team Momo last year could not save itself this year. Though its chances of qualifying were already looking slim after the first two events, Team Primary’s fate was sealed when Mary failed to start in the last leg of the Relay Race. The controversy surrounding her blunder will likely continue on in r/Marblelympics for months to come. For now, we hope that our chance to speak to Rima about why she thought the team had a disappointing Qualifiers will suffice: 

“To be honest, things haven’t been easy in the past year. When Team Momo called out for help last year, I was the one to suggest to Prima that we should merge with them. Prima initially denied, saying that a green team like Jungle Jumpers would be better suited to help them, but eventually realized that this would be an opportune chance for us to compete. Prim and I were 

the choice marble athletes to form Team Momary, but the fans wanted Mary to join. So Mary joined. And I was denied the chance to compete.” 

When asked about the merger, Mary shrugged it off, “I mean, it made sense for me to compete. My name is a part of “Momary”, so. It’s only fair.” 

Rima continued. “Imar, Aryp, and I watched from the sidelines as Team Momary got a gold and a silver, and then proceeded to get twelfth overall. We weren’t impressed, to say the least. And we made that known to Prim and Mary when they dissolved the merger in the offseason. Since then, it hasn’t been pretty between the five of us. Who knows if it will ever be.” 

It seems Team Primary is going through some rough patches. We hope its members can move past them and work together.

Conclusion: For Some Teams, But Maybe Not For Others

The hype that surrounds the MarbleLympics each year often obscures the hardships behind the scenes: the difficulty in training to qualify, the struggle in maintaining strong performances, and the challenge of demonstrating excellence, among others. If it was easy, any group of marbles would team up and casually roll past the competition—but it’s not. It takes determination to be involved in any aspect of the MarbleLympics, let alone participate in the main tournament, and it’s admittedly not for everyone. 

Nevertheless, the result has been proven to be worth it; it has been rewarding beyond any marble’s wildest dreams. If these eight teams work hard during the offseason—pushing their capabilities beyond what they have thought possible—they will rediscover those rewards, as they have in MarbleLympics past. 

Limers, Team Momo, Rojo Rollers, Kobalts, Jawbreakers, Snowballs, Shining Swarm, and Team Primary, we implore you not to give up, but to move forward. Learn from this, grow stronger, and be excellent. We’re looking forward to see you competing again. 

Let’s roll. 

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RetRollSpective – Oceanics

Hello and welcome to the seventh ever RetRollSpective, where I reflect on the history of marble athletes that have been featured in the MarbleLympics. This

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