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Pretty funny to watch. I can't beleive that they made the game so complicated.
In the first two seasons, two teams of five compete in a match of three rounds in a best-of-three format. (This was altered significantly for season three; see "Other Rule Changes and Amendments" below.) A round ends when one of the two teams loses all five of its members. The first round is standard and is played with two dodgeballs. In the second round, often called the "Big Ball Round," a third ball which is twice the diameter of the other two is added into play. This ball is often used to deflect attacks. In the third round, "Dead Man Walking," the Big Ball is removed and in its place is an orange headband that is placed on one member of each team who is designated the "Dead Man Walking." In the first and second seasons, if the Dead Man Walking is eliminated, the team he represents loses the game and consequently the match.
In each of the three seasons, there were multiple ways for an athlete to be eliminated and sent to the sideline. Some variations in these regulations exist in the three seasons, but for the most part these rules remain the same. The following are ways in which a member of a team can be eliminated:
* Getting hit with a ball
* Throwing a ball which an opponent catches (in this case, a person previously eliminated can come back in, but the number of people in the playing arena cannot exceed 5)
* Dropping a ball being used to deflect a ball thrown by an opposing player
* Crossing over the center line or (in seasons one and two) stepping outside the boundary
There are also two ways of returning to the game after being eliminated. The first, as previously mentioned, is if a player catches a ball. At this point, one of their teammates can come back onto the court, until five members are on the court. The second way is called a regeneration. In the first season, if all but one member of the team were eliminated, the last player had the opportunity to hit a target aptly named the "regeneration target" and, if this was accomplished before he was eliminated, all of his teammates returned to the court. In season two, the last player on the court only had to stay alive for 20 seconds to regenerate his team. In both cases, a team could only regenerate once per round. Lastly, in the third season, this rule was changed again. If the last player standing is able to not be eliminated for 30 seconds, only one of his teammates can return. If the last player is eliminated, four team members return to the game. However, this could be done an unlimited number of times.
 Other rule changes and amendments
For the second season, there were two more main changes. Firstly, there was a 5 second delay of game warning. If a team held more than one ball for over 5 seconds, one of its players would be out. The second rule stated that if a player, in the opinion of the referee, was impeding the flow of play of the game by stalling, refusing to throw the ball, or attempting to force a play on the opposing team, the referee(s) could give that player a "yellow card". Two yellow cards meant that the player in question was ejected. This second rule was introduced in the early stages of the second season and is called the "Benedetto Amendment" after player David Benedetto, whose wise but sly tactics were considered unfair play.
In the third season, many significant changes were made to the rules. First, the teams would add two players each, increasing the number of players from five to seven. Still, however, only five members of the team would be allowed on the court at any given time. The players who came on the court rotated; if four of a team's five players were eliminated, and the final player regenerated a teammate, the sixth member came onto the court.
The main change in this season was the format of the matches. Instead of 3 rounds which ended when all of the players on one of the teams were eliminated, the matches would be divided to four, six-minute quarters. The victor would not be decided by the fastest elimination of an entire team; rather, the team with the most points at the end of the 24 minutes. If a player eliminates any opponent in any way, his team gains one point. Bonus points are given in special circumstances (i.e. when a team wipes out the entire other team, if a player "kills" an opponent with the Big Ball by throwing, and killing the Dead Man Walking).
Other small changes were added. For example, if a player received a yellow card for yelling at the referee, holding a ball for too long, disobeying the instructions given, etc., he would have to stand in a small square while a player on the other team would be given a free shot at him. If the penalized player is hit, the opposing team scores a point; if the player leaves the square's boundaries, two points are awarded. Another small change was in the court itself. In previous seasons, the boundaries had been on the left, right, and front for each team. In this season, however, the left and right boundaries were removed and the court became similar to that of many indoor sports, such as indoor soccer or ice hockey.
In the second quarter, the Big Ball is put in play similar to the first two seasons. Since the big ball is used mainly for defending and is difficult to throw, a bonus point would be awarded for a kill through throwing.
In the third and fourth quarters, the teams are on the side opposite of that which they started. In the fourth quarter, the orange Dead Man Walking headband comes into play. One person on each team must wear the headband at all times. Any time a Dead Man Walking is eliminated, the other team gains a bonus point, but does not win the game. The headband is simply transferred to someone else. When two minutes remain in this quarter, there is a break in the game where the teams are allowed to switch the players on the court with ones on the bench (but each team retains the same number of players that had been on the floor). At the end of the fourth quarter, the team with the most points is declared the victor and is awarded $5,000.
If, after the fourth quarter, a tie is reached, the game goes into overtime, in which each team chooses three players to represent them on the court. There are no regenerations, and catching a ball does not bring in a new player- once a player is out, they are out for good. The team which can last the longest is declared the winner of the match.
In the third season, referees are able to give players red cards, much like in soccer. If a player is given a red card, he is out for the rest of the game. Players get red cards if they behave in a particularly improper manner too serious for a yellow card, such as physical contact with an opponent in a harsh manner. Red cards are uncommon, but have been given multiple times. One player, Brian DeCato, was even suspended for the season due to repeated offenses.