The squared circle, as it’s affectionately called, is the center of all (well, most) of professional wrestling’s action. What may seem to be just three sets of ropes tied to a few steel posts is actually a carefully designed structure built to enhance the wrestling experience.
To describe a generic wrestling ring, let’s do a top down, inside out approach. First, there are the steel corner posts. These are the ring’s anchors and keep it steady with all the action going on inside and out.
Next are the turnbuckles. Each rope is connected to the ring posts via a turnbuckle. Ropes are hooked up to the posts slack and are tightened by inserting a metal bar through the center of the turnbuckle and twisting the bar. Turnbuckles are very solid and can be quite dangerous if exposed. For this reason a large pad covers each one – most of the time.
Then there are the ropes. Every wrestling ring has three ropes on each side. Ropes have gone from being mainly adornments used to keep the action in the ring area to integral parts of a wrestler’s repertoire. Ropes are usually made up of steel cable covered with a thick padding. The tightening of the ropes with the turnbuckles gives them their spring (+2 to acrobatics rolls when using the skill) and lets the wrestler bounce on, off, and over them.
The mat is the canvas floor of the ring, but it is much more than that. Underneath the ring itself are springs designed to give some bounce to the mat. Through the combined use of turnbuckles, ropes, and a spring-loaded mat, professional wrestlers manage to pull off their eye-popping stunts. Around the base of the ring is a cover sometimes decorated with a wrestling logo that hides the ring’s underneath portion. It also acts as a good place to hide things participants are not allowed to have in the ring (at least according to the official rules).
Outside of the ring itself is what’s called the “ring area.” This area is separated from the crowd by a steel barrier. Inside the ring area are often the announcer’s table, the ring bell, timekeeper, announcers, ring steps, and various camera crews (if the event is televised).
Wrestling Ring Variations
Since most wrestling rings are pretty generic, this section describes a variety of variations on the standard wrestling ring. This does not include events like “tables” or “tables, ladders, and chairs” matches that revolve around bring things “into” a standard ring.
A particularly vicious type of wrestling match is the barbed wire match. In this match, the ring ropes are actually replaced with lengths of barbed wire stretched berween the turnbuckles. Other than the obvious effect of curring anyone coming into contact with the wire, it also grounds high-flying wrestlers, as the barbed wire doesn’t give them the same footing or support a standard ring rope would.
In a cage match, the ring is surrounded by a cage usually made of chain-link material (like a fence) with a steel support ring at the top and a door in one corner, but a few shows have had elaborate steel crossbar cages, which are easier to climb. The idea behind a cage match is to be the first person to escape to the outside via the door or by going up and over the cage itself.
A cell match has the same basic principle as a cage match, except there is a roof on top of the cage preventing anyone from leaving – at least in theory. Cell matches are known for their ferocity and for wrestlers escaping to the outside of the ring and climbing the cell itself. The cell’s top then becomes a makeshift ring area where a wrestler could end up plummeting five meters to the floor below.
Exploding Death Match
The king of all hardcore matches, the Exploding Death Match combines the barbed wire match with explosions. The exploding portions of the ring are sometimes placed in the corners on the turnbuckles, or outside the ring itself on the floor around it in the ring area. Coming into contact with any of these areas cause them to explodes, doing serious harm (damage 3D) to the wrestler.
While not a variation in itself, some events have two or more rings are placed side by side, and the wrestling action flows between them. Sometimes multiple rings have been paired with cages or cells to create truly different wrestling experiences.
In this match, a pole is placed in one or more corners of the ring and the first person to reach the item on the pole wins the match. A variation of this theme has a weapon of some sort hanging from the pole, and the first person to grab it is allowed to use it on his opponent.
One of the most dangerous of all matches, a scaffold match consists of a regular wrestling ring with a scaffold built up and over it. Two or more combatants climb opposite sides of the scaffold, and the participant standing on it is the winner.
Things to See
+ Metal folding chairs
+ Thin particleboard folding tables
+ Handheld microphone
+ Baseball bat
+ Wooden or aluminum stepladder
+ Glasses or plastic bottles of water
+ Glass bottles of beer
+ Thin metal garbage can with lid
+ Stop or street sign
+ Length of metal chain, a meter or more long
+ Brass ring bell attached to a small plywood stand, with a metal bell hammer
+ Whistle on lanyard (usually around the referee’s neck)
+ Ice-filled towel or gel-filled cold pack
+ Championship belt made of gold-plated metal and leather
People to Meet
Wrestlers have at least 2D in every attribute, with 3D or 4D in Physique and Reflexes. Some wrestlers have a higher Intelligence as well. All have at least + 2 (often more) in acrobatics, brawling, melee combat, lifting, con, and persuasion. Other common skills include business, charm, climbing, dodge, jumping, scholar, sneak, stamina, and throwing.
Wrestler: Reflexes 3D, acrobatics 4D, brawling 5D, jumping 3D+1, Coordination 2D, Physique 3D, lifting 4D+2, running 3D+2, Knowledge 2D, business 2D+2, scholar: wrestling 4D, Perception 2D, Presence 3D, intimidation 4D, persuasion 3D+2, willpower 3D+1. Move: 10. Strength Damage: 2D. Body Points: 14. Wound levels: 2.
Things to Do
+ Ever since White Dragon cheated the Hype out of his tide, the former champ has been seeking revenge. White Dragon has done his best to dodge Hype by making him go through a slew of intermediaries or using match stipulations against him. Now the Hype has his chance. In a straight up, mano a mano contest with no disqualifications and no interference from the back, the Hype gets his title shot at White Dragon. But is there something else going on at the show, something more than the public story about two wrestlers feuding, something that could turn deadly?