Seven Seas Stadium (Neptune Island; ML)
Aquamaring (Dunduei; M1)
Marble League 2016; Marble League 2017; Marble League 2018 (3rd Place); Marble League 2019 (Host); Marble League 2020; Marbula One Season 2; Marble League Winter Special (Champion)
The Oceanics have been a staple of the Marble League since the beginning. That said, like a wave forming in the ocean, the team originated out of nowhere. Aqua, Sea, Shore, and Ocean grew up as childhood friends in the cultural capital of Dunduei. They all worked at a surf shop in a nearby town when they were teenagers, which was odd because none of them knew how to surf. They all loved to hang out on the beach, but they weren’t so keen on going into the water unless they needed to cool off. None of the Oceanics learned how to swim until they were preparing for the Marble League, which is likely why the team has a subpar performance record in water events.
The friends discovered their passion for marble sports at dawn one morning, as they brought the surfboards out to be cleaned before the day’s rentals. On the way out, Shore dragged one of the surfboards in the sand, creating a long path. When Ocean brought their board out, they saw the path leading to the water and decided to have some fun. Needless to say, the friends were exhilarated. They decided to close the shop for the day, and test out the course, extending it until the point that it would be washed away by the tide. The day turned into another day, then the entire week, before Aqua made the executive decision to sell their surf shop and go into training. The friends never looked back.
Marble League 2016 was announced two years later, after the friends were already competing in the Seven Seas Circuit in Oceania with other teams, such as the Turtle Sliders and the Balls of Flame. They immediately jumped at the opportunity, requesting to be admitted into the competition. Settling on the name “Oceanics”, they were accepted to Marble League due to their success in the Seven Seas Circuit and traveled to the mainland to compete, ecstatic about the chance to prove themselves against teams around the world. Winning one event, earning silver in another (a water event, notably), and netting two other points led the Oceanics to finish 10th overall by the season’s end.
They were determined to not give up, and rode their wave of eagerness into the Marble League 2017 Qualifiers, securing a spot in second. Although the Oceanics started strong in the first half, earning silver and bronze in two events, they finished 11th with 99 points. Dejected, they returned to Dunduei with little fanfare.
Many saw the team as a staple in the Marble League by this time, but a staple that had never really seen success. It was at this point that the team came into contact with Tide, who was, at the time, promoting marble sports competitions in Mellacai, a major city in science and architecture. Tide personally reached out to the team and offered to train them for the Marble League 2018 Qualifiers. The team did not hesitate. Tide then bought the Oceanics outright, funding their flights to Mellacai and beginning training with them. During this period, the Oceanics stayed out of the public eye completely. Press releases surfaced detailing that Tide would coach the team, that the Oceanics were constructing a new stadium in Dunduei, and that they had hired Reef as their manager, but that was all that the public heard about the team until the Draw.
The Oceanics placed into Group B of Qualifiers and surprised everyone by finishing at the top of their group. Riding a wave of momentum into the main tournament, they earned the first gold in Marble League 2018 and continued to place consistently in the top ten in the following events. Their next medal, a bronze, came with setting a Marble League record in the heats. Their final medal of the season, a gold in Curling, was accentuated by Shore’s bullseye at the end of the final match. The Oceanics led the standings going into the final event but would end the season third-place overall with 130 points and three medals.
The Oceanics did not perform well in either of the two offseason events, but they began to train in the Seven Seas Stadium as construction entered its final phase, with Coach Tide, Royals Triton & Marina, and mascot Alvin supervising. At the end of the Amazing Maze Marble Race, the Oceanics were revealed as hosts for Marble League 2019. Hosting its Friendly Round just after Qualifiers, the Oceanics edged out the O’rangers by a point to win as hosts, the only time they would do so all season.
As the main tournament drew near, internal changes began to shake the confidence and performance of the team. This would be the first season in which the Marble League actively featured its coaches by having them sit in the grandstand, and the officials ruled that it was a conflict of interest if the coach of a team was also an active member of a team. As a result, Tide decided to become the full-time coach of the Oceanics, and they brought on Bay to serve as the Oceanics’ new reserve, who had previously competed with the team in the 2018 Qualifiers. The team struggled with the transition to Tide as Coach, feeling that they no longer had as good of a perspective on how the Oceanics were faring during training.
The team trained extensively for water events, fearing poor results in any of them. In spite of their training, the Oceanics struggled with not just every water event, but every event they offered in Marble League 2019. Their highest finish during the entire tournament was fourth and the Oceanics were eliminated from contention by the final quarter of the tournament. Management had had enough, and they fired Coach Tide.
From there, Reef brought Lagoon in as the new coach of the Oceanics, while Tide’s hands were figuratively tied. Tide tried to fire Reef as manager, but this proved futile when the Royal Family got involved. With this, Reef was able to spark excitement and hope within the fanbase, inspiring the fans who had left the grandstands to return to the Seven Seas Stadium and cheer on their team for the last few events. Regardless, the Oceanics’ performance in the 2019 Marble League did not improve, and the team finished the season last with the worst points average of any team in Marble League history, punctuated by finishing last in the final event. The Oceanics fans had already left the stands after the fifteenth event, but they returned to the stadium and swarmed the podium, voicing their disappointment with a bold sign that read, “NOCEANICS”.
The Oceanics started the 2019 offseason in the news, as an article surfaced regarding the team’s dire state of affairs. The article featured an official letter from the Royal Family of Dunduei, which announced that they had purchased the Oceanics in its entirety from Coach Tide. As part of the acquisition, the Royal Family now owned the Seven Seas Stadium and all operations related to it, hosting the Marble League 2019 Showdown and viewing events for Marble Rally 2019. The Royal Family allowed Reef to remain as manager and Lagoon as the Oceanics’ new coach, overseeing the team’s offseason training for the Marble League 2020 Qualifiers.
The team received attention yet again in late 2019 after all Marbula One teams were revealed and the Oceanics were not on the roster. An alleged leaked video claimed to reveal the real reason why the 2019 Marble League hosts would not show up for Marbula One. When asked if team management was blocking the Oceanics from joining Marbula One until the athletes resolved their hydrophobia, a spokesmarble refused to comment.
After a dismal 2019, the Oceanics were attempting to put their struggles in the past. In preparing for Marble League 2020, they took an aggressive approach thanks to a stricter coach in Lagoon. Lagoon made sure the Oceanics would be pushed to the limit and then some. The Oceanics finished the 2020 Qualifiers against all odds in third place with 54 points, stamping their return to the Marble League.
Few took that seriously. Heading into Event 10, the Oceanics had broken a record for consecutive Marble League events without a podium. It was at this point that the Oceanics felt like they hit rock bottom mentally. But in a close final, Ocean would hold off late charges by both Hazy and Minty Flav to secure a victory in the Sand Moguls. After 27 events and nearly two years of misery, the Oceanics had not only secured a medal, they had won an event for the first time since the Curling event of Marble League 2018.
A big celebration happened after the event, and the Oceanics would ride a wave of positive energy into the next four events. Earning a silver and a bronze, the Oceanics had one of each medal during a season for the first time in team history. Their proudest moment of 2020, though, was one without a medal – it was “The Miracle in the Waves” where the Oceanics advanced in a water event over the O’rangers. The team finished Marble League 2020 in tenth place with 133 points, their most in any season to date.
Receiving a well-earned invitation to Season 2 of Marbula One, Coach Lagoon submitted Ocean, “Tide Turner” and Sea, “Seasoned Sprinter” to compete in the coming races. Also invited to host a Grand Prix, the Oceanics decided to buy the Aquamaring with the help of volunteers across the region, including their former coach, Tide. Hosting a friendly with former competitors from the Seven Seas Circuit to commemorate the opening of the track, the Oceanics celebrated while Ocean, Sea, and Lagoon headed to the Minty Mania GP.
Three Grands Prix later, the Oceanics had struggled to make an impact, but it was now time for them to host at the Aquamaring. Returning to Dunduei, Ocean turned the tide for their team in Qualifiers when they earned pole position—but the design of the track came at a cost to Yellup of Mellow Yellow, who fell off during their run and suffered minor injuries. During the race, Ocean could not defend their pole position, finishing ninth. At the halfway point, the Oceanics were in seventeenth place, with Ocean and Sea 24th and 30th in the racer standings.
While on vacation in Hailfern, the Oceanics received an invitation to participate in an invitational Marble League Winter Special in the Himarblelayas that would be hosted by the Minty Maniacs. Lagoon and Reef informed the team about the details and set a goal: to not just return to the podium but to win the Championship. That hit the Oceanics hard, but they knew it could be done. Three events later, the Oceanics had earned one of each medal: gold from Aqua in a photo-finish from the Snowboard Cross, silver from Ocean in Speed Skating, and bronze from the team in Bobsled. Their lead in the standings was 12 points over the Thunderbolts, while the Hazers, O’rangers, Minty Maniacs, Team Momo, and the Green Ducks were the other teams that could challenge the Oceanics’ spot for a championship heading into the final event, Ice Hockey. These other teams did not succeed.
What seemed like the unlikeliest of scenarios two years prior had come into fruition—the Oceanics had won a Championship! They were able to redeem the heartbreak in 2018 and all of 2019 with a trophy: a dream come true for all of the members of the Oceanics. The Oceanics would share the podium with the O’rangers and Hazers, both of them congratulating the team on a successful and stunning run. The team went straight to the fans to celebrate their achievement. The fans not just in the Oceanics section but around the stadium were giving the Oceanics a rolling ovation. The Oceanics’ anthem, “Pride of the Seas”, played over the loudspeakers.
Momentum from the sudden championship did not carry over into the second half of Marbula One. The next two races had Ocean finish twelfth at the Raceforest and Sea finishing tenth at the Momotorway, though the latter was able to get the fastest lap at the end of the Grand Prix. Unfortunately, the next two races proved to be the Oceanics’ downfall as both members would fail to qualify at Palette Park and Misty Mountain.
Ocean would get one last chance to impress at the Savage Speedway. There, they would start on the second row behind two of the fastest marbles in Marbula One history: Red Eye, who was leading the Racer standings, and Speedy, who won the Racer championship last season. Ocean would start the race strong and be in second. While Starry had a late run to steal second, Ocean held off Prim for the bronze, earning the Oceanics’ first medal in Marbula One. The medal would put Ocean in the top half of the Racer standings in 19th. Sea would finish ninth in the final race at Midnight Bay, which put them 36th in the Racer standings. The Oceanics finished a dismal seventeenth place, their lowest placing in a tournament so far.
After the long season, the Oceanics took a week off to relax for a bit following Marbula One Season 2. The next week, the Oceanics would fly to Felynia. Before the Qualifiers were to begin, a practice race was held just outside Felynia in the Cat’s Dunes. Ocean took part in this race and finished 10th, 4.38 seconds behind Indie from the Indigo Stars. It was a nice warm-up and it allowed them to compete against the Turtle Sliders for the first time since their Seven Seas Circuit days, even if they would not face off in Qualifiers.
If winning the Marble League Winter Special felt like a dream come true for the Oceanics, the Marble League 2021 Qualifiers felt like their worst nightmare. Never in contention for a qualifying spot, the Oceanics finished last in Group A, failing to qualify for their first Marble League in team history. The Turtle Sliders in Group B would also be heading to the Marble League 2021 Showdown, meaning that the former rivals would be facing off again.
However, the Oceanics did not display much competition in the 2021 Showdown. Even after their seasoned sprint with Sea’s bronze in the first event and earning a bronze in the Triathlon, partly a water event by design, the team did not place in the top half of any other event and finished 11th overall with 35 points. In a slight reversal of fortune, the Oceanics’ other offseason outing, the ESCAPE2021 Marble Race, ended in bronze for Ocean, who was the overwhelming favorite as selected by fans to win.
The true cost of the Oceanics’ 2021 season, even after decisively winning the Winter Special, came when the team did not receive an invite to Season 3 of Marbula One. Although the team was distraught, they held hope that they would be able to turn the tide later in 2022.
Special thanks to Project Marblearth contributors Nordique Whaler and Stynth for helping craft the lore of the Oceanics.