For fans of the WWE it’s the most wonderful time of the year. Sure WrestleMania is the “Show of Shows,” Summerslam is “The Biggest Party of the Summer,” and Survivor Series is…the one in the Fall, but for most WWE fans the Royal Rumble is the best event of the year. The eponymous match sees 30 superstars (except in 2011 when it was 40, which Alberto del Rio won, so let’s make like the WWE and pretend it never happened) vying for a shot at headlining WrestleMania by throwing their opponents over the top rope and onto the arena floor.
If you’re reading this, odds are good that you know how the event works, but if you’re going to a Royal Rumble party or watching it at a local bar or something here’s the basic breakdown of the match.
- Two competitors start in the ring. Every 90 seconds another wrestler will enter the fray until all 30 men (or women!) have entered the match.
- Wrestlers are eliminated by being thrown over the top rope and only if both of their feet touch arena floor. This is affectionately referred to as “The Shawn Michaels Rule” by some, and it comes up at least once a year.
- The prize for winning is an opportunity to wrestle for one of the two major titles at Wrestlemania, the biggest show of the year (which functions essentially as the WWE’s season finale).
- More so than any other event of the year, the Royal Rumble is where the WWE likes to trot out its biggest surprises – especially when it comes to debuting wrestlers and returning wrestlers.
The 2017 Royal Rumble looks to be one of the most unpredictable events in recent memory. Obviously, as this is a scripted sporting event where the prize is a guaranteed slot at the top of the card of professional wrestling’s version of the Super Bowl, there have been years where the outcome was entirely too obvious. I mean, who’s more likely to headline WrestleMania? The big scary undead zombie guy who is a multi-time world champion or the Canadian fashion model who dresses as a police officer and hands out tickets to the poorly dressed individuals around the ring?
As such, wrestling fans long ago learned to cope with the formulaity of the event–by inventing a drinking game to go along with the match. Now much like kickball, the rules for the game seem to differ depending on who you’re talking to–and truth be told, it’s unwise to try and use all of the rules if you care at all about your brain or liver. Still, in order to make your party the best it can be, we here at AiPT! would like to share with you the official rules for the Royal Rumble Drinking Game.
Just look at this mass of humanity!
The Firm Rules (all apply)
These three rules are ubiquitous to every Rumble and should be followed by all players watching the match:
1. Take a drink for every elimination.
This means you’ll be taking at least 29 drinks, so don’t try and be a hero here. Drink responsibly.
2. Take a drink for any returning superstars.
First timers and lapsed fans will definitely want to have a regular on hand to confirm whether or not someone fits the bill, but the big names to look for include Irish Demon King Finn Balor and Olympic Gold Medalist Kurt Angle. Don’t be surprised if they trot out a past-their prime Hall of Famer either.
3. Take a drink for any debuting superstars.
The WWE loves to bring in new talent during these matches, whether they be free agents from the independent scene or wrestlers from their own developmental system known as NXT. The big names to watch for this year are former NXT Champions Samoa Joe or the greatest wrestler in the world not named AJ Styles, Kenny Omega.
4. Down your drink whenever a favorite is eliminated.
In recent years it has been fairly obvious who would win each Royal Rumble, but 2017 has so many favorites that this rule is going to be a doozie. We recommend having each player chose one favorite and sticking to them. According to the Las Vegas betting odds, your favorites this year are: Large beard enthusiast Braun Strowman, tattooed snake enthusiast Randy Orton, bald parenting enthusiast Goldberg, zombie motorcycle enthusiast The Undertaker, and be-scarfed list enthusiast Chris Jericho.
This is Braun. His Tinder profile says he likes liftin’ weights and eatin’ steaks.
The Player Rules (only applies to individual players)
Depending on how many people you have playing along, select as many as three of the following rules to apply to each individual player. Not every rule will get hit, but some will get used A LOT, so be fair and simply draw for these.
- Take a drink every time the announcers say “Road to WrestleMania”
- Take a drink whenever one man is alone in the ring
- Take a drink every time they mention the amount of time a wrestler has been in the match
- Take a drink every time Michael Cole says “Are you kidding me?”
- Chug for the entire time that James Ellsworth is in the match
He probably won’t last long, but he’s got that sweet Offspring tattoo!
- Drink every time they say that someone has won the Rumble from X number.
- Down your drink when Kofi Kingston avoids elimination through some ridiculous means.
- Down your drink if an announcer enters the match.
- Down your drink if one tag team partner eliminates the other.
- Down your drink if a wrestler is eliminated before his music stops playing.
- Take a drink if a female superstar enters the match.
- Take a drink if a non-athletic celebrity enters the match.
- Take a drink whenever Twitter is mentioned in any context.
- Chug for the entire time they frame a shot with one or two wrestlers having a face-off while standing under the WrestleMania sign.
- Down your drink whenever someone points at the WrestleMania sign
“THAT’S MY MOM SITTING OVER THERE!”
- Take a drink whenever they mention “history between these two competitors”
- Take a drink whenever someone says some variation of “Business has just picked up”
- Take a drink whenever someone says “Who can stop this man?”
- Take a drink whenever someone brings up the “Both feet must touch the floor” rule
- Take a drink whenever an announcer says “Hello (Insert wrestler name), and goodbye!”
- Chug your drink for however long two men have a faceoff in the middle of the ring
- Chug your drink for however long a smaller wrestler stares at a giant wrestler
- Take a drink every time someone says “it’s every man for himself”
- Down your drink at any noticeable botches (mistakes) in the match
- Take a drink whenever someone goes through the ropes.
The face of responsible drinking: Stone Cold Steve Austin
The important thing to remember with this game is to have fun and for god’s sake PACE YOURSELF. The match will go at least an hour, so you’ll want to make sure you can make it through the entire thing without passing out. Drink responsibly and happy rumbling!