Powered by LiquidWeb Search all of OO for news, columnists, and articles about your favorites!
News  -/-  Recaps  -/-  Columns  -/-  Features  -/-  Reference  -/-  Archives  -/-  Interact  -/-  Site Info

Donate to Online Onslaught!
     Daily Onslaught
     Obtuse Angle
     RAW Satire
     The Broad

     Inside the Ropes
     OOld Tyme
         Rasslin' Revue
     Title Wave
Crashing the

     Smarky Awards
     Big in Japan
     Guest Columnists
     2 Out of 3 Falls
     Devil's Due
     The Ring
     The Little Things
SK Rants
The Mac Files
     Sq'd Circle Jerk
     RAW vs. SD!:
         Brand Battle
     Cheap Heat 
     Year in Review
     Monday Wars
     Road to WM 

     Title Histories
     Real Names
     PPV Results
     Smart Glossary
     Message Boards
     Live Chat 
     OO History

If you attend a live show, or have any other news for us, just send an e-mail to this address!  We'd also love to hear from you if you've got suggestions or complaints about the site...  let us have it!

Royal Rumble 2010 Preview and Game Rules
January 28, 2010

by Rick Scaia
Exclusive to OOWrestling.com


I must admit: this is one of those weekends when even I can't muster up much of the usual level of snark and cynicism about what Vince McMahon has done to my beloved pro wrestling over the course of the past 5 years. Well: I can. I'm just that damned good at it. But I choose not to.
Why? Because Royal Rumble Weekend is still all about happy fun times. Like it used to be. Like you hope it is again some day. One should leave one's poopy-pantsed pessimism at the door, sit down, and enjoy. I mean, it's pretty much down to this and WrestleMania Weekend, so if you can't have fun on Sunday, you really need to think about just walking away...

Those of us who still cling to hope (and to the 1 week out of 4 when it seems WWE manages to remember to put more than one or two segments of gOOdness into a given show), however, know that the Rumble is almost a lock to be the most fun contiguous 60 minutes of the Wrestling Year. Part of that is the nature of the match itself, and its history of taking advantage of its structure. But the rest of why it's so fun boils down to three words that OO Nation has been lucky enough to know about for a decade:

It started with our crew somewhere towards the beginning of the Attitude Era. And after a few years of keeping it a private matter among friends, I shared the rules with the world, and our Rumble Game has become a mild international phenomenon.

C'mon, admit it: NOTHING is more fun that playing the game so that you actually have a reason to cheer/boo/care-about EVERY SINGLE ENTRY into the Rumble. You can mock your friends when they draw Santino Marella! But then you'll have no choice but to grab the nearest damn bottle and give yourself Instant Liver Damage when you draw Evan Bourne! 

No more sitting around, only perking up when somebody like Triple H or John Cena enters the match. Those jokers get enough of the attention as it is. Playing the Rumble Game spreads the excitement out over the entire hour. Nothing says "Sunday Night Funhouse" like caring So Damned Much that you actually jump around like a monkey, cheering on some worthless choade like Zack Ryder, in the hopes that he goes nuts and pulls a Diesel '94 out of his ass, somehow! Trust me, just play it: you'll have fun.

Long time readers should be relatively well-aware of the Royal Rumble Game and its rules. For the uninitiated, though, here's how it goes: 

(1) Count how many people are in your group
(2) Put that number of pieces of paper in a hat (or baggie or box or whatever; though a University of Dayton baseball-style cap IS the traditionally appropriate vessel), each piece containing a number (1 through however many people there are)
(3) Each person draws his/her number out of the hat-like object; your will be assigned wrestlers, in a rotating fashion, based on this number. For instance, if you draw #3 in a five-person game, you will get entries 3, 8, 13, 18, 23, and 28. If you are #1 in a three person game, you get 1, 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, and 28. You get the idea, right? 
(4) Sit on the edge of your seat and start murmuring every time one of your wrestlers is about to enter; hope for the best, but prepare for Hornswoggle! React accordingly, and preferably profanely
(5) You accumulate points thusly: 

- one point (1) for every solo elimination made by your wrestlers... 
- one-half point (0.5) for every tandem/group elimination aided by your wrestlers (yes, if eight men team up to get Khali, they each get 0.5 points, even though that adds up to 4.0 points instead of 1.0; this is a game, people, not quantum mechanics!).... 
- two points (2) for each wrestler you have that makes it to the Final Five of the Rumble (yes, final FIVE; the final FOUR are usually all bigger stars, but this opens things up for one last surprise guy to net you a bonus, plus it helps level the point distribution between "elim points" and "survival points")...
- an additional five points (5) if your wrestler is the runner-up.... 
- ten big points (10) if your wrestler is the winner of the Rumble. 

If the scoring seems overly-simple, take my word for it: it's time tested. For one, true fans will be drinking their faces off for the annual spectacle that is the Rumble, so simple math is the best math. For two, it's actually quite an elegant set-up, with around 30 points determined by eliminations and spread out evenly, but 25 bonus points "back-loaded" and concentrated into the Final Five. This invariably means that several people will be vying for the point lead during End Game, which makes it all the more exciting.

Oh, and for the sake of full disclosure: the game is fair and "even" with 3, 5, 6, or 10 players (or with 2 or 15, I guess, though it's never come to either of those with our group)... meaning that everybody gets the same number of wrestlers with those numbers of players. In cases of uneven games where some players will get one less wrestler than others, it is permissible to give the handicapped players a "head start." We've settled on giving the handicapped player(s) 2 points to make up for being one wrestler short. Feel free to do the same, should the situation arise in your unique gaming situation.

Also, the most recent rule amendment we've made was this: it is now legal for a player with an "extra" wrestler in an Unfair Game to TRADE his last wrestler (ONLY his last wrestler, since then he's taking a huge risk of it being a Final Five Wrestler, and really has to ponder whether it's worth it or not) to one of the handicapped players in exchange for the guaranteed 2 points, if he can find a willing partner.
According to our rules, this transaction must be agreed upon before the Rumble Match starts, though you're certainly free to tweak that particular regulation if you think it'd be fun to have heated in-match negotiations as two guys are keeping track of what wrestlers are still "on the board" (basically, the Rumble Game equivalent of Card Counting in blackjack).

It is completely appropriate to append a Cash Prize to the game, as well. You can have each player post an entry fee deemed appropriate (with "winner-take-all" being the payout format), but we've also done it where the winner simply has his share of the PPV price tag (and perhaps the accompanying food delivery from a local sub shop) waived, and it's absorbed by the others for a less-intense and more-friendly game. Your choice.
So there you have it, your rules for the Royal Rumble Game, and another year of my hearty encouragement that you play along at home with your friends. You'll have nothing short of a blast, you have my word on it!
Note: my offer only extends to the Rumble Match itself. Unlike last year (which had an awesome Edge/Jeff Hardy match on the undercard), there's nothing else on the 3-hour show all that compelling. WWE really is banking on the fact that fans buy the Rumble FOR THE RUMBLE, and not for anything else. At least, that's the only sane interpretation one can make looking at the card.
And since we're both here, why don't we look at said card. Here's what's announced for Sunday night:

  • 30 Man Royal Rumble Match. To the best of my ability to determine, WWE has only officially announced 27 of the 30 men, which of course means there could be some wild cards showing up; that's always part of the fun of the Rumble Match. They have also already officially announced 90 second intervals between entries; the "traditional" interval is 2 minutes, but in recent years, WWE has tweaked that based on how the rest of the show plays out (more often than not having to go with 90 seconds, but not officially announcing it as such ahead of time).
    Personally, looking at the rest of the card, I can't fathom why this year wouldn't be a no-brainer for the full 2 minutes. Get the rest of that shit out of the way fast, and let the Rumble fill up the full hour, instead of 45 minutes, dammit. But what do I know? I'm just a wrestling fan, not the marketing genius who thought Randy Orton vs. Sheamus would sell a dime's worth of PPVs....
    Anyway, the Announced Entrants (roughly grouped in descending order of relevance): John Cena, Triple H, Shawn Michaels are top tier. Batista, Chris Jericho, Big Show, and maybe CM Punk are second tier, and limits the number of "guys who've ever actually headlined a PPV, much less WM" at 7. Then, the vast "almost everybody else" third tier is: Miz, Kofi, Morrison, McIntyre, Rhodes/DiBiase, MVP/Henry, Kane, Matt Hardy, Shelton, Khali, Jack Swagger, R-Truth, William Regal, and Chris Masters; some of those guys MIGHT even get you points in the Rumble Game! Then there's a few sad sack fourth-tier entries that will probably last a combined 38 seconds in the Rumble (despite a few of them being among WWE's more talented guys): Yoshi Tatsu, Zack Ryder, Evan Bourne, and Carlito; sorry fellas, 2 of you are on ECW and the other 2 get ritually humilated every week on RAW. Your prospects are bleak.
    At various times this week, I also know that WWE had both Santino and The Hurricane on the official roster, but have taken them off, to leave us at the current 27. Both would probably land in the "fourth-tier" above, anyway, so it hardly matters one way or the other, right?
    Announcers have been ordered to hype this  as "the deepest Rumble field in history," which is an absolute joke, and an insult to any fan who can remember back as far as -- oh -- one year. Then again, with its new focus on the 12-year-old demographic, and booking designed to appeal to morons, maybe that's what WWE's counting on? Bottom line: there is nothing special about this year's line-up. It's about what it always is: a small handful of credible winners, and a couple more guys compelling enough to keep things interesting for the whole match, and then filler. End of story.
    I believe quite strongly that there is zero chance for somebody other than Cena/HHH/Michaels to win. From the sounds of things, WWE actually intends to ride Sheamus all the way to WrestleMania, and do an old-school/Hogan-Era "let the signature babyface decimate the disposable heel for a happy ending at the biggest show of the year" thing, with Sheamus playing the role of King Kong Bundy/Sgt. Slaughter/et al. Depending on which way they go, the role of the Hulkster would only go to one of HHH or Cena. Michaels could also win, if they decide it's the best way to get him in line to face Taker at WM26. I could come up with some cool things for other guys winning, but why bother when WWE's not even considering them?
    If I had to guess? I'd probably call Triple H the favorite of the lot. It makes a ton of sense for a ton of different reasons, in "WWE Think." If you have to pick between HHH and Cena as top champ, (a) it's been a bit longer since HHH was really in that mix for any extended period and (b) there are rumors that Cena's various aches and pains are catching up to him and he may need time off after WM (same caveat also applies to Taker, whose full-time career is actually thought to be over after this year's Mania as he requires a hip replacement, and Big Show, who may opt for surgery immediately after the Rumble in hopes of being BACK at Mania). So that's a fit for HHH.
    Secondly: the end to RAW this week seems to telegraph a multi-way feud among Sheamus, Orton, and Cena. HHH was nowhere to be found. My read is that means HHH will win the Rumble and be above that little mess for the next month or so (he could deal with Michaels being upset with him, or something; it would be a nice way to quietly end this DX Reunion and get both guys refocused on singles action), and since the February PPV is now anviliciously titled "Elimination Chamber," we know we need six guys to go into the titular match and battle for the WWE Title and for the right to job to HHH at Mania. I figure Shemus/Orton/Cena is a good start on that, and then would award the two of the other spots to Rhodes/DiBiase in a "deck stacking" type move that backfires, and FINALLY leads to the merciful end of Lethargy. Errrr, Legacy.
    Thus, you have all your ducks in a row for a WM26 line-up that has: HHH/Sheamus, Orton/FaceLegacyDefector (probably DiBiase), and Cena in a Special Attraction (it's known that WWE has a hard-on for doing a Cena/Batista rematch, since they haven't yet paid off on the promise of their only past encounter at SummerSlam 2 years ago). Trust me, I'd rather spin you yarns about Jericho winning the Rumble and Edge returning as a huge surprise to take the World Title, and the two former friends and tag partners end up thrust into a heated rivalry for the strap, but in WWE Think: what I just outlined is EXACTLY what they think you want to see.
    Speaking of Edge: he is on everybody's short-list of possible Wild Card Surprise Entries. He still wouldn't be 100% after his injury, but he also wouldn't have to do much in the context of a match like the Rumble. A few minutes of work, and so long as he eliminates Jericho before he, himself, gets tossed, everything is in place for those two to collide at WM. Me, I'd rather play it safe and not bring Edge back till he definitely IS 100%, but I'm not a doctor, I haven't been following the dude's rehab, so what do I know? I'll tell you what: that a lot of people think the Rumble match is a perfect spot for Edge's return. THAT's what I know.
    Other Wild Cards: Booker T is in the mix; he left TNA all but swearing he was heading back to WWE where things weren't half as fricked up, then that fell apart (a negotiating ploy by WWE to make them seem less interested and drive Booker's price down?), then it was back on for a while, and now talks have cooled again (Booker is saying he'd rather focus on breaking into acting; a ploy to keep smart fans off the scent of his return?)... but Booker's still on people's maps, and even if he's not set for a full-time return, even a one-night comeback (ala RVD last year) could pop the crowd... RVD claims he thought the Rumble was last weekend, which goes to show how in-touch with WWE he is (and honestly, since Shane McMahon is gone, nobody else in a position of power so much as has RVD's phone number since they all hate RVD mightily, which is retarded, but it's how the Vinces/Stephs/Johnny Aces of the world roll)... a lot of dorktastic fantasy bookers are really attached to the fact that TNA has yet to sign Jeff Hardy to an actual contract, and think he did that one episode of Impact just as a tease, and he still intends to land back in WWE in time for WM; me, I say that's a crazy-ass long-shot, and wouldn't look for Jeff in WWE until after his legal troubles are behind him (next court date is in a month or so)... and after that, there are countless (less-sexy) in-house options for WWE to consider if they need warm bodies: Santino and Hurricane were apparently already in the match at one time or another, Luke Gallows would give CM Punk somebody to work with and should get SOME exposure seeing as how he's half of the next tag champs, the Hart Dynasty have been getting a serious mini-push on SD and the two of them could easily enter, and Hornswoggle (like it or not, wankers) would be good for a goofy little set-piece with DX....
    And I'd like to see a LOT of those little set-pieces this year. After last year's surprisingly spartan and "underbooked" Rumble Match, I want them to get back to a more intricately booked affair, loaded with distinct moments. Not just filling up the ring until they have 20 dudes all in there, and then doing a standard battle royale; it was a tolerable change of pace last year, but now we need to go back to what makes the Rumble fun and unique. That means taking advantage of staggered entries and a less-packed ring to do said set-pieces.
    The Rumble Roster -- though not as deep as Michael Cole would have you believe -- is set up to facilitate this, as there ARE a lot of interwoven storylines to take advantage of. DX (individually or together) could have prickly heat with Cena. Or Big Show. Or Jericho (for getting him kicked off RAW). Or, after last night on SD, Batista. Or they could even have heat with each other. Jericho could have heat with DX, but seeing how he interacts with Big Show (and Big Show's new steady, Miz) could be pure gold; not to mention Jericho's standing issues with a few guys on SD (mostly R-Truth and Morrison), or what would happen if Edge really did show up. Miz could get tied up in that Show/Jericho stuff, or be stuck dealing with his own foes, like Kofi and MVP/Henry; but it might also be fun to write another chapter in his rivalry with Morrison. See what I mean? There's just so many layers and so much backstory that it'd be retarded NOT to take advantage of it with a more complex and cleverly laid-out Rumble.
    So I really hope Pat Patterson (the inventor of the Rumble and architect of many of its more memorable years) is on somebody's speed dial come Sunday... let's cross our fingers.
  • Sheamus vs. Randy Orton (WWE Title). Yes, WWE took a not-over rookie heel (Sheamus), gave him their top title, and then booked him into a PPV feud with another heel (Slow-Motion Boy). So this has been about as thrilling as you'd expect: not very. It's so not-thrilling that it seems like -- in so far as any fans actually are gonna care -- the cheers will be in favor of The Biggest Fucktard In The Universe. Odd: I didn't know WWE fans were so easily amused by mentally-impaired, metrosexual, misogynistic, motionally-challenged manifestations of mediocrity. Myself, I'd have sided with the albino; he may suck, too, but at least he's only sucked for 6 months, instead of for 6 years. I figure Sheamus wins (as is his wont, he'll do it cheaply, since WWE's booking him as the weakest champ since... well, since CM Punk only 5 months ago, but you get the idea), and Orton will somehow blame Legacy for not helping him enough (they had their own match, you see, and forgot to come out), all of which sets up the scenario I laid out above. Whee?
  • Undertaker vs. Rey Mysterio (World Title). Normally, you'd see that, and think "My, that could be pretty good." But then you'd be forgetting that Taker is a broken down mess, right now, who was even relegated to OPENING PPVs with a few World Title matches last fall (instead of headlining them), due to the fact that he couldn't work much more tha 10-12 minutes. D'oh. So this unique face/face match-up (OMG, MIRROR IMAGE OF RAW'S TITLE MATCH~!) may not be all it's cracked up to be. Taker will give it the ol' college try, though, and Rey will bump around like mad, so it should still be quite tolerable (better than Orton/Sheamus, anyway). WWE ain't getting back on the Mysterio Bus again anytime soon, so Taker wins, and advances to the SD version of the Elimination Chamber next month, where -- in a six-man match -- he can lose the title in a fluky fashion that doesn't hurt his rep as much as losing one-on-one. Then it's full-speed ahead for Taker and Michaels to use any one of an estimated 3.2 billion available deus-ex-machina-style plot twists in order to set up their showdown at WM26 (now NOT a title match, which it doesn't need to be)... and the SD World Title can therefore be placed front-and-center in the Jericho/Edge feud we're all hoping to see come to a head at WM (Jericho wins Elim Chamber, Edge returns and becomes an instant thorn in the side, voila~!)... meantime, the talk regarding Rey is that a Mask vs. Hair Match (against Punk) is what he'll be doing at WM.
    [TANGENT: Here, in the Rumble Preview, I've effectively just previewed WM26... I've got six matches for it, at least. Two SD (both good), two cross-brand (both good), and two RAW (both sucky). Throw in Money in the Bank (Miz, Kofi, Morrison, McIntyre, Shelton, and 3 others would work for me), the inevitable Vince/Bret Gimmicky Sports Entertainment Segment, an ECW Title Match, and a women's match, and that's a 10-match card for you. Done and done. Where's me check, WWE?]
  • Christian vs. Ezekial Jackson (ECW Title). Christian's been rolling since summer as the ECW champ, facing a pretty cool mix of guys (including some babyfaces). But this is straight up mega-heel monster he's got on his plate on Sunday. Not only is Zeke huge, but he comes with the added William Regal Factor. So this really is just about the biggest threat to Christian that he's faced so far. Zeke is still really rough around the edges, workrate-wise, but I doubt this gets more than 6-8 minutes, so Christian's more than awesome enough to hold his hand for that long before whatever they decide to go with as a finish. I kinda favor the idea of sticking with Christian as ECW's signature star, but I fear WWE wouldn't put him over a dude like Zeke. At least, not unless it somehow involved the recently-jilted Vlad Kozlov lending Christian a hand, which is also not necessarily something I'd be a fan of. But we'll see....
  • Michelle McCool vs. Mickie James (Women's Title). So Michelle and Layla have been calling Mickie a fattie for the past 2 months. Oy. It's not too much different from what The Beautiful People do in TNA, where most of us kinda dig the bitchy act. The difference here in WWE is that the Writer Monkeys have booked Mickie way differently than TNA booked any of TBP's victims. She isn't strong or confident or dismissive of the ridiculous taunting. She's all weepy and crying and taking-it-all-seriously, which takes the angle from good-natured bitchiness to a really mean-spirited and uncomfortable affair that makes you wonder what happened to the Writer Monkeys to cause them to have such disdain for the female gender. Oh, that's right: the female gender never has sex with them (at least, that's the case if you believe Raven's analysis of some of WWE's creative team members' battles with virginity). Whatever: so in my book, this match would have been the blow-off to a feud between shallow bitches and the girl with the sweet ass, and the girl with the sweet ass would win, thus proving that she's best at WRESTLING, which is more important than being the best at anorexia and bitchiness seeing as how it's a GODDAMNED WRESTLING SHOW. However, I suspect that won't be the case, as Mickie has dared to take up interests outside of WWE (a singing career), so WWE may be looking to land one last Vickie-Guerrero-style kick to the self-esteem before showing her the door. I hope I'm wrong, but.... well, I ain't holding my breath...
  • Other Stuff. Bret Hart's re-return is now being hyped heavily as a drawing card for the next night's RAW, so any chance of him showing up at the PPV to surprise us seems to have evaporated; that's OK with me, as other than a quick one-off backstage bit, I'm not sure what he could do, and this'll give his Monday showdown with Vince a little more heft.... the Diva Title Tourney is down to two, so they could conceivable do the Gail/Maryse match at the Rumble PPV, if they wanted/needed to fill time... if Santino's not in the Rumble, then trying to work him in for some kind of skit/promo would be advisable... if WWE does have plans for any non-Taker/Michaels cross-over WM matches, planting those seeds on Sunday would be wise; Cena/Batista does make sense, and could either be teased by events in the Rumble match, or something quick backstage... and lastly, it's all but confirmed that Atlanta is getting WrestleMania 27 in 2011, and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if WWE let that cat out of the bag on Sunday night; those of us viewing at home may not give a shit, but the live audience in (you guessed it) Atlanta would probably get pretty fired up over the Special Announcement...
There you have it... everything you need to know about the Rumble PPV in order to have a hell of a time on Sunday night. Including how to play the legendary Royal Rumble Game!
So kick back and have a good time, if it is your wont. And if it isn't? Just come on back to OO on Sunday night around midnight or so, and we'll have a full recap posted for all you cheapskates out there! See you then, kids....

SMACKDOWN RECAP: Bonding Exercises
RAW RECAP: The New Guy Blows It
PPV RECAP: WWE Night of Champions 2012
RAW RECAP: The Show Must Go On
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Boot Gets the Boot
RAW RECAP: Heyman Lands an Expansion Franchise
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Losing is the new Winning
RAW RECAP: Say My Name
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Deja Vu All Over Again
RAW RECAP: Dignity Before Gold?
PPV RECAP: SummerSlam 2012
RAW RECAP: Bigger IS Better
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Hitting with Two Strikes
RAW RECAP: Heel, or Tweener?
RAW RECAP: CM Punk is Not a Fan of Dwayne
SMACKDOWN RECAP: The Returnening
RAW RECAP: Countdown to 1000
PPV RECAP: WWE Money in the Bank 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Friday Night ZackDown
RAW RECAP: Closure's a Bitch
RAW RECAP: Crazy Gets What Crazy Wants
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Five Surprising MitB Deposits
RAW RECAP: Weeeellll, It's a Big MitB
RAW RECAP: Johnny B. Gone
PPV RECAP: WWE No Way Out 2012
RAW RECAP: Crazy Go Nuts
RAW RECAP: Be a Star, My Ass
RAW RECAP: You Can't See Him
RAW RECAP: Big Johnny Still in Charge
PPV RECAP: WWE Over the Limit 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: One Gullible Fella
RAW RECAP: Anvil, or Red Herring?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Everybody Hates Berto
RAW RECAP: Look Who's Back
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Care to go Best of Five?
RAW RECAP: An Ace Up His Sleeve
PPV RECAP: WWE Extreme Rules 2012
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Sh-Sh-Sheamus and the nOObs
RAW RECAP: Edge, the Motivational Speaker?
SMACKDOWN RECAP: AJ is Angry, Jilted
RAW RECAP: Maybe Cena DOES Suck?
RAW RECAP: Brock's a Jerk
SMACKDOWN RECAP: Back with a Bang
RAW RECAP: Yes! Yes! Yes!
PPV RECAP: WWE WrestleMania 28



Rick Scaia is a wrestling fan from Dayton, OH.  He's been doing this since 1995, but enjoyed it best when the suckers from SportsLine were actually PAYING him to be a fan.



All contents are Copyright 1995-2014 by OOWrestling.com.  All rights reserved.
This website is not affiliated with WWE or any other professional wrestling organization.  Privacy Statement.