Tlachtli: The Mesoamerican ballgame

The Mesoamerican ballgame is an ancient sport played throughout Central America starting more than three thousand years ago. While some games may have been played purely for exercise or entertainment, there is strong archaeological and historical evidence for highly ritualized games that could even end in human sacrifice for some or all of the losers. W. Navarre has captured the action of a ballgame from the Aztec era, when ballcourts included rings through which players tried to bounce the rubber ball. The builder uses forced perspective to achieve a backdrop with a stepped pyramid temple — even the blazing blue sky is built with bricks.

Tlachtli; The Aztec Games

The microscale pyramid includes decorative elements made from cut stickers — only official LEGO stickers, of course! The cheese slopes work wonderfully for the pyramid’s steps.

Tlachtli; The Aztec Games

3 comments on “Tlachtli: The Mesoamerican ballgame

  1. Håkan

    Now I remember the Road to El Dorado movie, where the heroes (or at least leads) ultimately win a breathtaking game of Aztecball… (Although it was a task achieved by blatant cheating, but still…)

  2. Dan

    Well, not the losers were sacrificed but… the winners! This was considered the highest honour for them!

  3. Håkan


    The El Dorado heroes managed to avoid sacrificing, though, but they were considered messengers from the gods…

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