Sports Simulation Board Games

How to play FACE TO THE MAT Pro Wrestling Game

To show you how FACE TO THE MAT Pro Wrestling Entertainment simulation board game works, let's open up the box and play a few minutes of sample match.

We'll assume that you've already set up your federation. You would have already established the wrestlers you want to use as "regulars," and also made some basic decisions about managers, valets and "gangs." It's easy and fun, and completely explained in the rules.

You'll need to decide on your "card" for the evening. Usually, this involves a series of five to ten individual matches. You'll also decide which celebrities are in the crowd...realizing that they could get involved at any moment!

Once your "event" is set, you place the wrestling ring playing board, markers and dice on your table, and proceed with your first match. For our demonstration, we'll choose a couple of wrestlers from the fictional "Wrestling America Federation," Randy "Super" Cooper and Ray Edd Hargus.

Before the action begins, you'll need to see if there are any story-line developments that might affect the match. (You do this before and after every match in FACE-TO-THE-MAT.)

Rolling the dice and checking the "story-line" section of the wrestling ring game board, you find that there's something simmering between these two guys! Checking the pre-match chart, we find out that "Super Cooper" has opened the TV broadcast with a blistering ridicule of Hargus, "This guy doesn't belong in a wrestling ring, he belongs in a pig farm, slopping HOGS!," or something to that effect. THAT doesn't set well with the big ol' country boy--his "grudge grade" is increased two points. (The effect of the grudge grade is fully explained in the rules, but--essentially--the higher the grudge grade, the madder and more dangerous he gets!)

Now you're ready for the match to begin. Click here for a printable PDF of the wrestler and fast-action cards we'll be using for this sample play sequence. You place your wrestlers in their corners of the wrestling ring game board, shuffle the deck of fast-action wrestling cards, and--that's it! You're ready to start!

You turn over the first card in the fast-action deck, and it is a "powerful" wrestler result. Is either wrestler a "powerful" wrestler? You see that "Super" Cooper is. Reading the result on the fast-action card, you find that Cooper used his power to slam Hargus into the turnbuckle. Each move or action in FACE TO THE MAT is given a point value, and each time a wrestler "hits" with a move, he gets closer to winning. A "match track" makes it easy to keep track of the points, and to visually see which wrestler is winning and by how much. In this case, you move Cooper's marker one space down the "match track".

The next fast-action card is a "specialty" result. Since BOTH wrestlers have a "specialty" move, the struggle is resolved by a simple tie-breaking procedure, explained completely in the rules. Hargus prevails THIS time, and throws Cooper out of the ring with one of his patented hay bale tosses, scoring four match points to take the advantage. You move his marker four spaces down the match track, and pick the next card. It's a "Wild Card" result.

The "Wild Card" results bring all the theatrical "show-biz" stuff into game. You go to the "Wild Card" chart in the "Highlight Center" booklet and again roll the dice--a "46" this time. Checking result "46" on the "Wild Card" chart, we discover that a couple of members of Hargus' "Good Ol' Boy" gang, "Gaylord T. Good" and "Big Dog Dickerson," have decided this would be a good time to help their buddy put Cooper away while he's down. (Uh-oh, here they come!) THIS time, though, Cooper's having none of THAT, and Cooper abruptly pops up off he mat and gets the crowd going with a "payback" move on Hargus, scoring three points himself, and evening the match at four points each. WOO-HOO!

The next card is a "TV MOVE" card. Here's where the wrestler's TV Grades come into play, which is designed to reflect each wrestler's "fan appeal." This grade changes over the course of the wrestling season, depending on a wide variety of factors such as grudge match results, celebrity involvement, and between-match interaction. In this case, we'll say Cooper has the higher TV Grade, a grade of "C," meaning that he'd score one point with this particular card, a wrist lock. (A more popular wrestler might have scored as many as four points on the same card.)

Your next card is a "Grudge Grade" card. You remember that Cooper's pre-match tirade gave Hargus the bigger axe to grind, and as a result, he blasts Cooper to the mat with one of his personal repertoire moves. OUCH! Three points for the country boy!

We'll leave the match here, with Ray Edd Hargus hovering over a dazed Super Cooper, holding a slight advantage and moving closer to a decision--although that could change in a hurry in FACE TO THE MAT! You continue to flip cards in the fast action deck until one of the wrestlers wins the match. Often, a wrestler will have the opportunity to use his "finisher" to end the match, and, as in real pro wrestling, the more effective the "finisher," the more likely it is he'll put out his opponent. And, of course, sometimes a wild event will end the match in a TOTALLY unexpected way!

AFTER the match, you'll go again to the story line table to find out any further "plot wrinkles" for your federation. Complaints, protests, gloating, challenges, fights, chairs broken over heads, WHO KNOWS what action might break out! Feuds begin and end, faces turn heel and vice-versa, and The Commissioner is always a threat to issue some sort of heavy-handed ruling or edict. Of course, all this gives you material for your NEXT show!

Matches can be one-sided, or close...over in a hurry, or a tense, back-and-forth, drawn out WAR! And there's plenty of action BEFORE and AFTER the matches too! Best of all, a match usually takes just three to five minutes to complete in "real time," so you can finish a sull wrestling "show" in under an hour! FACE TO THE MAT TV Pro Wrestling Game is a fast, simple, fun-filled, action-packed, re-creation of real pro wrestling!