E-fedding is one of my most favourite hobbies right now and I’m sure 94% of people in the world have never heard of the term e-fedding. If they have, they haven’t gotten a clear idea of what it actually was. Once I was attempting to explain to one of my best friends what e-fedding was, and after giving it a pretty good shot, she says to me “So is it like Tekken?” Clearly, however, my efforts were in vain.
E-fedding in its purest form is online role playing in a wrestling sense; you create a character (or characters, as it were) and roleplay as them in a fictitious wrestling federation, called an “e-fed” (think e-mail, but not mail). The creator (called the handler) manages his or her character’s wrestling career where they may become champions in the federation or even Hall of Famers.
For the sake of argument, I will be using my experiences as an e-fedder in Lords of Pain Wrestling (LPW) and Full Metal Wrestling (FMW) to form the foundation of this article.
When it comes to your character, or characters in my case, you start from scratch; you can create absolutely anyone you want – and I stress that, absolutely anyone. I’ve encountered a character named Cyborg Lincoln, who was a robotic recreation of Abraham Lincoln, to a man named Morpheus who is the Master of the Dream Realm. In the world of e-wrestling, no character is too out there to become an e-wrestler. Besides creating their physical attributes and backstory, you also get to create their wrestling moveset and their wrestling style, but more on that later. I created the characters of Lacey Valentine, the schizophrenic housewife turned sweet-natured poster girl, and April Montenegro, the fiesty Victoria’s Secret model turned wrestler.
LPW follows the “voting and promo” style of e-fedding, in which a handler writes a written piece of prose or any other form of writing and submits it as a “promo”. Their promo goes up against another handler’s promo, who they are placed in a match with, for example: Lacey Valentine vs. Morpheus would see me writing a promo against Morpheus’ handler’s promo. After the “promo” period is over, which is a time frame of when handlers can post their promos, the voting period begins. If a handler does not submit a promo within the promo period, he or she is considered a “no show” in which the showing handler will automatically be handed the win. In the voting period, other handlers vote on which promo was better of the two, three, four, or however many there were in the single match. After the voting period is over, in LPW’s case, the LPW staff gather together and rate the promos in .1 increments between 0 and 5. These ratings are joined with the votes and whoever has the highest score wins the match.
I hope that didn’t go too far over your head. Now, I’d expect some people are wondering “So, after all that writing, these people come to life and fight an actual match?” If that were the case, I would mark out hard. The head writer sends his or her staff match assignments, in which they write a match, going back to the example of Lacey Valentine vs. Morpheus. If I as a handler received more points than Morpheus, the match would be written so that Lacey Valentine would be the winner and the match, along with the other matches and segments, will be posted as a show on the LPW forums (LOPforums).
When it comes to match writing, matches are written based on the characters. Continuing to use Lacey vs. Morpheus as an example, a 5’8 vivacious blonde is not going to have the power to gorilla press a 6’2 265 lbs man in Morpheus, so when creating your character’s moveset, it’s important to take in physical capabilties. With Lacey, her moveset is quick and high-flying which is suitable for a smaller wrestler such as herself. These physical possibilities are taken into consideration so you’ll see Lacey flying all over the place, trying to ground the much bigger Morpheus, and Morpheus would use his strength to try and take the victory.
When handlers are not writing in promos, they can engage in “trash talk”, which is a totally different concept to voting and promos. Trash talking is conversation handlers have in character with other e-wrestlers where they (TA DA) talk trash to each other. This trash talking is not rated in any way (unless there are special circumstances) but it is a way to explain your character further and, of course, talk trash to other wrestlers whom your character may hate.
My e-fedding friend explained it perfectly to me when he said “It’s pretty much competitive writing”. If you’re an excellent writer, your career as an e-fedder will go far compared to someone whose writing isn’t as great. Seeing as I want to write for a living and consider myself a pretty decent writer, my characters (Lacey and April) are the current LPW Tag Team Champions after beating another two handlers in a tag team match contested for the titles.
If there is one thing that I’ve enjoyed the most about e-fedding, it is the people that it has introduced me to. I have made some really good friends through my e-fedding hobby. These guys (as they are all men in my experience) are really down to earth and genuine and it’s interesting to see the difference in personalities in guys that all have the same hobby.
I asked my friend Chris what he thought about E-fedding as a hobby and he had this to say: “I e-fed because it’s an escape. I love writing, and e-fedding allows me to immerse myself in a character and take him in whatever direction I may want to. Unlike writing a novel or a short story, in e-fedding I have to make the character adapt to several characters being written by others in a world controlled by others. To me, it’s reactive writing. It both challenges and entertains me. Not to mention that I have been a wrestling fan for most of my life.”
E-fedding is also a great hobby because it’s a creative outlet for people who want to be creative. I get to roleplay as two fun-loving bubbly blondes and still have the privilege of keeping my manly bits in tact.
Whether you’re interested in joining an e-fed or you didn’t even have the energy to read all of this, I hope this has given an insight as to what e-fedding actually is, so if I tell you “E-fedding is one of my hobbies” and you’re like “What is that?” I can just point you to this instead of having to explain in vain.