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Blackout Rugby is a free web-based rugby union management game created by New Zealandersmarker Jeremy Bell and Matthew Scoble of Blackout Entertainment Ltd. Having launched in December 2006 the game currently has almost nine thousand users worldwide.


On a hung-over Sunday in the middle of 2005, Matt, a member of Hattrick and Battrick began to wonder about creating a rugby version of those games. As Matt lacked the development skills needed to create such a game, he brought the idea to a friend, Jeremy Bell, who had the skills necessary to turn Matt’s idea into fruition. His first step was to get Jeremy to play Hattrick, which he did. At the time though, Jeremy was busy with other endeavours in his own business and university. It wasn’t until January 2006, when Jeremy was looking for new business opportunities, that he decided to take on the (unknowingly at the time) massive task that became Blackout Rugby. Over a few drinks at Matt's modest Hamilton, New Zealand house, the game was transformed from idea to reality and the initial plans were put on paper. Since that day Matt has had a leading role in shaping the game and the final decisions always came down to him. Almost two years later, Jeremy saw the light at the end of the tunnel, and together with Matt, released the game to the world.

Following the site launch in 2006, the game went beta on 7 October 2007 with a second beta stage then commencing on 27 November 2007.

Finally, after many delays and over two years of development, Blackout Rugby went gold on 14 December 2007, attracting considerable attention from the New Zealand national press .


A new user joining Blackout Rugby is given a new rugby club in their chosen country complete with:
  • A first team squad of 30 players
  • A youth team squad of 22 players
  • A ground with a capacity of 5,000.

They also have an initial bank balance to spend on improving training facilities, hire higher level staff, invest in their Youth Academy or spend on the transfer market.

Blackout Rugby currently includes fifteen nations:
  • Argentina with around 2,700 clubs
  • Australia with around 2,700 clubs
  • Canada with around 600 clubs
  • England with around 10,900 clubs
  • France with around 600 clubs
  • Ireland with around 2,700 clubs
  • Italy with around 2,700 clubs
  • Japan with around 600 clubs
  • New Zealand with around 2,700 clubs
  • Pacific Islands with around 600 clubs (which include the countries Cook Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Tonga)
  • Romania with around 600 clubs
  • Scotland with around 600 clubs
  • South Africa with around 2,700 clubs
  • United States with around 2,700 clubs
  • Wales with around 2,700 clubs

Within each nation teams compete in a league pyramid over seasons of sixteen weeks, the first 14 of them being round robin games with each team versing the other teams twice once at home and another away, each with a knock-out cup taking place on the intervening Wednesdays. Users also have the options of arranging friendlies with any team in the BR world. Matches are played in real time with flowing match commentary and real-time statistics.

Blackout Rugby uses a unique combination training systems with team training, individual training and match training all being utilised by the user to advance their squad. Users also have to manage the financial side of their club, hiring and firing required stadium staff, expanding their ground and recruiting a financial advisor.

BR World Cups

Within the Blackout Rugby game world, international matches take place, at Under-20 level (U20) and full National Teams (NT).The first U20 BRWC took place at the end of Season 4 (Feb/Mar 2009). The first NT BRWC will take place at the end of Season 5.

Season Host WC Type 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
4 South Africa U20 United States New Zealand England Pacific Islands
5 New Zealand NT New Zealand Italy England Australia
6 United States U20 New Zealand England Italy Australia
7 Pacific Islands NT

8 Wales U20
9 Romania NT
10 Argentina U20
11 Scotland NT
12 Australia U20
13 South Africa NT
14 Canada U20
15 United States NT
16 England U20
17 Wales NT
18 France U20
19 Argentina NT
20 Ireland U20
21 Australia NT
22 Italy U20
23 Canada NT
24 Japan U20
25 England NT
26 New Zealand U20
27 France NT
28 Pacific Islands U20
29 Ireland NT
30 Romania U20
31 Italy NT
32 Scotland U20

33 Japan NT
After season 33, the cycle will repeat, assuming no new countries are created within the game by this point.

National Cup Winners

Below is a table of clubs that have won each country's National Cup competition in each season.

Country Season 1 Season 2 Season 3 Season 4 Season 5 Season 6
Argentina 11 Men in Flight Embalse Jaguars Badpeppermints Woodward Chile Woodward Chile
Australia Ncc XV Saints XV Wafgash Gloucester XV Emu Slopes Red Bull Rage
Canada Burnaby Blues Jg Falcons Burnaby Chiefs Brampton RFC Burnaby Knights Huskies RFC
England Liverpool Lions Purple Dinosaurs Purple Dinosaurs Bromborough Bromborough Bosh
France Since1962 Skeubs OM Spirit Skeubs OM Spirit Skeubs
Ireland St Mary's College RFC Aramasu's Pirates Catalonia Darkside Cowboys Sandtrail Aramasu's Pirates
Italy Union 96 Rugby Milano Reproscanrugbybergamo Targaryen Reproscanrugbybergamo Reproscanrugbybergamo Vii Rugby Torino
Japan Buckland Gentlemen RFC The Hills Madrid Rockets Sleepy Goats Sleepy Goats Sleepy Goats
New Zealand The Western Woah Riccarton Allstars Vandernators Vandernators The Dissident Aggressors Hercufleas United
Pacific Islands Maramasike Nuggets Pacific Sharks Rotuma Tsunami Pacific Sharks Moratai Maruaders Pacific Sharks
Romania Polecats Cehul Silvaniei Stags Black Wallaboks RC Berceni Polecats Black Wallaboks
Scotland Softies Dalgety Bay Aztecs Union Bears 07 United Fenwick Thistle United
South Africa Durban Wanderers Juskei Jackals Claremont Warriors Eijkels South African Youngsters Black Sheep
United States Enigma Mature Chedder Academicals RFC Cambridge Rugby Club DC Barbarians Booyakasha
Wales Mighy Marauders People's Front Of Judea Jeff's XV Dodgy Badgers Va Va Voom Jeff's XV

National League Winners

Below is a table of clubs that have won each country's National League competition. Season 3 was the first season where human managers reached division 1.

Country Season 3 Season 4 Season 5 Season 6
Argentina Ccba Woodward Chile Woodward Chile Diogenes Club
Australia The Undeads Gloucester XV Gloucester XV Gloucester XV
Canada Kitchener Warriors Kitchener Warriors Alaskan Assassins Alaskan Assassins
England Purple Dinosaurs Purple Dinosaurs Bromborough Caracas Danger
France Les Fadas Les Fadas Skeubs Skeubs
Ireland Pandora's Pingu Pandora's Pingu Southern Spears Rfc Pandora's Pingu
Italy Busto Arsizio Reproscanrugbybergamo Reproscanrugbybergamo Fantaikuvium XV Campione
Japan Grampus Sleepy Goats Sleepy Goats Sleepy Goats
New Zealand Taita Hooligans Hercufleas United Carlton Corner Hautapu Hopefools
Pacific Islands Moratai Maruaders Moratai Maruaders Tau'uta Barbarians Tau'uta Barbarians
Romania Black Wallaboks Black Wallaboks Polecats Polecats
Scotland Fenwick Thistle RFC Yaroslavl Russia Fenwick Thistle Ghlomaich Gaels
South Africa Argentina Basel Champs Champs Argentina Basel
United States Booyakasha Booyakasha Academicals RFC Booyakasha
Wales Bryncoch Ice Warriors Rhyl RFC Va Va Voom Va Va Voom


The game is free to play under its free basic membership with in-window Google advertising. The free basic membership also includes a free trial of the premium membership package. The premium membership includes a wide range of additional benefits including:

  • Ad-free gameplay
  • A two-dimensional match view
  • Internal shortcuts to speed up browsing
  • More detailed training, player, and match statistics
  • Club and player nicknames
  • Player notes, blurbs, and jersey numbers
  • Club Logos
  • Ability to replay the last fixture
  • Ability to write press releases
  • Pregame Analysis
    • Comparisons of team ratings such as scrum and lineout
    • Results from past match-ups between the two teams
    • Current win or loss streaks
    • Latest scores.

External links


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