Campaign of the Month: January 2015
Skies of Glass
Sports and Games
The people of Creed enjoy many holidays. While the specifics of each holiday vary wildly, the time off from work and other responsibilities is often used to participate in sports and games, many of which are held as a part of grand tournaments) . While some among the nobility and wealthy will spend their abundant free time mastering some of these pastimes, few others manage to find the time or resources necessary to compete “professionally.” However, those knights or huntsmen or even blacksmiths who find rare success in the more popular of these games will occasionally find themselves reaping a wealthy reward over the years.
Most of the sports and games played across Creed are targeted towards increasing the martial or mystical skills of the participants. Creed is far from a safe world and all may be called upon to defend themselves, their home, or their country. Many of the games are therefore designed to provide weapon and magic practice or to increase a participant’s fitness and hone their mind.
Mundane Sports and Games
- Archery: Archery competitions are among some of the most popular held across Creed and one of the three most popular tournament games, each society having its own strict entry criteria and often outlandish costumes. Such events are often extravagant social and ceremonial events for the nobility, complete with flags, music, and salutes for the competitors. As well as its emphasis on display and status, the sport is notable for its popularity with females. Young women can not only compete in the contests but retain and show off their sexuality while doing so. Unsurprisingly, archery competitions often hold an important role in the social networks of the local upper class, acting as a forum for introductions, flirtation and romance. It was often consciously styled in the manner of a royal tournament, with titles and golden laurel wreaths being presented as a reward to the victor. Archery competitions tend to take on many, many different forms.
- Jousting: One of the most popular of the tournament events. Two horsemen each wielding a blunted lance ride toward each other at high speeds, each attempting to strike the opponent with the jousting sticks, if possible breaking the lance on the opponent’s shield or jousting armor, or unhorsing him. There are a number of different rules for jousting, often differing between cultures and skill levels.
- Melee: A broad category of extremely popular tournament games, though varieties of these games are popular in numerous festivals. Most commonly a one-on-one mock combat (using the skill Perform (Weapon Drill)) or nonlethal battle, some are held much closer to military reality, often leading to fatalities. Many melees are held with variant and very specific rules – such as mounted melees, melees requiring use of a specific weapon, or even mass melees. Melees are usually held in small arenas, but some have been known to stretch several square miles. Particularly popular melees more commonly performed as pastimes include quarterstaff contests and wrestling.
- Colf: A game played with a stick and leather ball. The winner was whoever hit the ball with the least number of strokes into a target several hundred yards away. Much like our modern Golf.
- Gameball (alternately known as Mob Football): Played between neighboring towns and villages, involving an unlimited number of players on opposing teams, who clash in a heaving mass of people struggling to drag an inflated pig’s bladder by any means possible to markers at each end of a town. Depending on the rules chosen, any means could be used to move the ball toward the goal, as long as it did not lead to serious property damage, injury, or death. Sometimes instead of markers, the teams will attempt to kick the bladder into the balcony of the opponents’ church.
- Hammer-throwing: A large weight is spun and hurled as far as possible. The weight is most commonly a spherical steel weight on the end of a chain, but chariot wheel gripped by its axle, a boulder attached to a wooden handle, a blacksmithing hammer, and even a sledgehammer are occasionally used.
- Shinty: A competitive team game played with sticks and a ball, one team attempting to pass the ball into a scoring area on the other side of a field. Shinty is a fairly violent game, with shoulder tackles being a common move and the players wearing no protection. Shinty has a large number of rules.
- Stick Combat: A common festival game. Two opponents, blindfolded, each armed with a stick fastened to their hand with a rope, enter a small arena. The opponents go round and round trying to strike at a fat goose or a pig (or a more dangerous creature in some cultures), which is also let loose with them, attempting to incapacitate the creature without being incapacitated themselves.
More in the works
Mystical Sports and Games
In the works