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Imperial Entertainment of Choice: Boloball (ING)
KUAT (Culture) - A domain as vast as the Empire has many varied and unique tastes among its sentients when it comes to cuisine, travel, and entertainment. But in the world of sports one thing is universal, and that is a love for Boloball. The Imperial Boloball League has seen a colourful display of victories, defeats, superstars and underdogs since its inception: winning teams such as the Dorin Sultans, Corellian Hotspur, Red Star Kiffex from seasons past; the growth from underdog to top-contender from the Tapani Steelers over the last two seasons; and dominating powerhouse Kiffex Hrakons, two-time champions who were looking to score their third victory, these are all but a few of the stories that have come to be over the years. As the most recent season came to a close this year the beloved underdogs the Tapani Steelers emerged victorious amidst all the contenders.
Boloball initially got its start from a separate game altogether, Shockball. Bringing together players, teams, and fans from across the galaxy, Shockball took the galaxy by storm and was cemented as the go-to entertainment venue for all sentients. Boloball grew out of Shockball as an adaption to the game, using different rules but a largely similar premise. Branching off in year 6 with the Auvasa Imperial League, it gathered steady support and eventually overthrew Shockball as the mainstream entertainment of choice for imperials. In year 11 the Imperial Boloball League was formed, spanning shorter seasons with a higher amount of games played. Because of this multiple seasons were run a year, sating the intense desire by fans to see more of what they wanted, and in turn keeping the players and clubs busy.
While it's predecessor Shockball has passed into the realm of sports history, Boloball has grown to engulf and eclipse it as the dominant sport of choice in the galaxy today. As individual teams fall out of favour and fashion, their associated super-stadiums and arenas now defunct memoirs of days past, the passion for the game in the heart of the Imperial population thunders on. New teams with bright hopes and the wherewithal to grasp them surpass the fossils of the early days, epitomising the burning desire for progress the Empire instils in its citizens to the galaxy at large.
The question that remains today for Boloball is, "What next?". Fans continue to show support for their teams, but can the Imperial Boloball League learn the lessons of Shockball? The sport will need to remain relevant in order to keep the interest of fans alive. Recent finals games have reached staggering turnouts and champions have been widely celebrated via holonet connections throughout the Empire. For now, the future looks good. Whatever the future may hold for Boloball, it's clear that Imperial passion for exciting and competitive organised sport endures.