Hi there!! I was wondering if I can get any help or inspiration on creating a sport-like activity, something like Quidditch or the sport featured on the movie Rollerball. Thank you!!
Every sport has a point to it. Simplify your sport’s goal into the simplest sentence you can imagine, like “Throwing a horseshoe around a pole” or “Hitting the other person with a blade” or “Making rocks land within a circle on the ice”.
What do you use to play the sport? Many sports use some kind of ball, ranging in size from ping-pong balls to beach balls. Other popular sport devices include interesting shapes - like Frisbees - and potential danger - like bladed weapons and bats. Some sports require outside help, either from animals (polo or jousting) or fellow humans (any team sport ever).
The equipment you need will shape a sport’s popularity. Soccer/football is such a popular sport because you don’t need anything other than a roundish ball and two goals you can mark with sticks in the ground. (American) football is popular because you need a football (easy enough to come by in the US) and, again, two goals you can mark with sticks. A game like lacrosse - which requires lacrosse sticks and balls - or polo - which, among other things, requires a horse - is more expensive and therefore less likely to be widely enjoyed.
How good to you need to be to play? This is another determining factor in who plays this sport: how much practice you need to play. To return to the previous point, soccer/football is easy to learn; most people can manage kicking a ball around without touching it. American football is a little harder to learn because one person needs to throw a spiral. In lacrosse, you need to learn how to weave the stick so the ball doesn’t fall out. In tennis, you need to train yourself to hit within the court and over the net.
To that effect, the more practice it takes to learn a sport - not master, but learn - the more expensive it will probably be. Your friends can teach you soccer in ten minutes. The list of people who can teach you ice dancing is much smaller (and, for free, almost nonexistent).
Where is the sport played? You don’t need an exact drawing of the field with all the penalty/important lines yet. You’ve got the goal and the equipment. From there it’s easy to guess the size of the field and maybe a few important lines. Most sports take place on an equally divided field. Generally, the smaller the number of participants, the smaller the field. There are plenty of exceptions, like golf and swimming and ballet, but if you’re doing a sport like Quidditch, the field will need to be big enough for several players to move around on.
How fast does your sport move? Sedate sports like croquet, golf, and bowling are still difficult in that it takes a long time to master, but you can do it at a slow, easy pace. Compare a sport like golf to a sport like dodgeball or soccer. You can’t think about every kick or throw for five minutes. You need to kick/throw now.
Generally speaking, slower sports were originally made for/appeal to the upper class. The rowdy masses like faster sports like horse racing and wrestling. But, again, it depends on the time period. In the Middle Ages, the nobility was addicted to violent jousts and the masses amused themselves with mile-long games of football and bear-baiting.