This Drone Soccer Game Looks Like the Modern, Real-Life Version of Quidditch

Drone soccer sure seems like a modern twist of the Quidditch game from Harry Potter 1 photo
Photo: WestyVCA
If you’ve never heard about drone soccer, here’s a short introduction. It’s an indoor sport played by two teams of up to five players each. The team that scores the most goals wins. But here’s the twist: they’re not using soccer balls, no. Instead, they use drones enclosed in protective plastic spheres (hence the name).
Drones were firstly used in the military back in the mid-90’s. Since then, they have grown in popularity among different sectors. From search and rescue operations, surveillance, and firefighting to capturing aerial shots and even food delivery, drones are now accessible to anyone and can be used in various applications. So why not use them to reinvent the good ol’ traditional soccer game.

Two years ago, this futuristic-looking sport was included in the World Air Sports Federation’s Sporting Code as a provisional class. From there, things immediately took off, and in November 2019, the first international tournament was held in Korea.

It took a bit of time, but on May 1st, the WHS Aerospace Engineering program participated in their first U.S. Drone Soccer Tournament. The event took place at the Wings Over the Rockies Blue Sky Aviation Gallery hanger in Englewood.

Four schools competed in the tournament. There were three teams of three players each, and they had to complete three rounds in order to win. For the game, 10 drones were operated by pilots standing near the “flying zone,” an enclosure measuring 66 ft (20 m) in length and 33 ft (10 m) wide. The drones were also encased in spheres that featured each team's specific colors so players could easily recognize which one belonged to which group.

Only one participant, known as the striker, could score by flying his or her drone through a circular goal post about 10 feet (3 meters) above the ground. The remaining players had to help their striker by defending the goal or preventing the other team’s striker from scoring.

The game sure did look like a lot of fun, and it sort of resembled the fictional sport Quidditch from the wizarding world of Harry Potter, minus the sci-fi flying brooms and the physical human interaction.

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About the author: Florina Spînu
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Florina taught herself how to drive in a Daewoo Tico (a rebadged Suzuki Alto kei car) but her first "real car" was a VW Golf. When she’s not writing about cars, drones or aircraft, Florina likes to read anything related to space exploration and take pictures in the middle of nature.
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