Lord of the Rings.
We live it!
Dagorhir Battle Games
is proud to be a
Be certain that you and your check-in crew arrive early. You
always want to be the first participants on-site.
On the way to the site, put up LARGE, CLEARLY WRITTEN signs with arrows
that say "DAGORHIR" to direct participants to the event.
When the check-in crew has arrived, review everyone’s tasks and
duties, ensure everyone has all needed equipment, and set up the
check-in area. You should also assign a couple of veterans to
draw up a list of battle scenarios for the heralds (referees) to use in
running the day’s events.
- Waivers/Membership forms (adult and minor)
- Pens and clip boards for filling out waivers
- Cash Box and financial records
- Marking Tape for weapons
- Measuring tape, “fish scale” (for testing the strength of
bows), and templates for checking weapons’ dimensions and safety
- Spare tunics and weapons to loan/rent to first-timers
- Yellow tunics for the Heralds (Dagorhir referees)
Have one check-in person direct arriving s to the Registration Table
at the start of your check-in “assembly line.”
New members fill out waivers/membership
forms, show ID to prove they are
who they say they are and to confirm their age.
- collects waivers,
- checks IDs, and makes sure everyone correctly filled out their
- collects s’ battle fee (typically $3 for a “day” event and
$5-10 for a campout or feast). ALWAYS keep careful track of the cash
box, and always keep exact records and receipts. As members of
a legally recognized non-profit association, each Dagorhir group’s
records must always be open for review by members, as well as
federal, state, and local government organizations.
SAMPLE ADULT AND MINOR WAIVER/MEMBERSHIP FORMS
Signature on Waiver (notarized signature from parent if under 18;
parents also have the option to come to the new member’s first event
and sign the waiver in front of a member of the Check-in Crew).
Next, participant’s costumes are checked to ensure they meet Dagorhir
minimum requirements. You and your check-in crew should try to
always set excellent examples by good costumes. Remember, new
will emulate the veterans, so if new people see you wearing an excellent
costume and staying in character, they will want to do the same.
When checking costumes, offer gentle suggestions for improvement, and
let first-timers slide when you feel it’s appropriate. Ask
people to remove the Metallica T-shirts, change out of blue jeans or
camouflage clothing into earth-tone sweatpants or shorts. In
winter, allow a lot of flexibility as long as participant's make an
attempt at medieval-looking clothing, such as wearing a loose poncho
tunic over a down vest or layers of sweatshirts.
First Timer Costume
What not to do
Next, send participants to Weapons Check.
HOW TO CHECK DAGORHIR WEAPONS
1. Visually inspect the weapon for gaps in padding,
torn foam, ripped cover.
2. Check that the weapon meets the size and weight
standards detailed in the Dagorhir
Manual of Arms.
3. Using a wooden template made to the specifications
in the picture below, check that the weapon’s pommel and other
protrusions are of at least the minimum required size.
4. Feel the weapon by squeezing for hard spots and
gaps in the foam. If you suspect a weapon is unsafe, don’t hit
yourself with it; first hit a fence post or the edge of a picnic table.
If you hear a “thunk,” the weapon is probably unsafe. See 6C
5. If the weapon meets all minimum dimensions and it
feels safe when you squeeze it, test the weapon by hitting a volunteer
(other than the owner) on the middle of their back with it. Hit
three times: light, medium, then all-out as hard as you can. Pause
between each hit so the volunteer can say, “Okay,” or “OUCH! –
Unsafe!” If the volunteer says the weapon hurts at any time,
stop testing the weapon and reject is as unsafe. See 6C below.
NOTE: Always have your volunteers place one hand on the back of their
neck and lay the other arm across their lower back (in the region of the
kidneys) to protect them from a test swing that goes too high or too
6. A. If the weapon doesn’t hurt, slap, or leave a
bruise, it passes. Mark it with the appropriate color marking tape
(red, blue, green, or yellow).
6. B. If the weapon is borderline (i.e., you feel
it’s currently unsafe but a minor repair such as adding more padding
to the pommel will make it safe to use for this battle), offer the owner
advice on how to fix it and tell him/her to bring the weapon directly
back to you when it’s fixed (they don’t have to wait in the
weapons-check line again). Before the owner takes the weapon away,
REMOVE ANY MARKING TAPE FROM PAST BATTLES. A weapon with no
marking tape is a weapon that needs to be tested.
6. C. If the weapon failed for any reason, REMOVE ANY
MARKING TAPE FROM PAST
BATTLES and direct the owner to put the weapon in their car (to ensure
the weapon doesn’t accidentally get carried onto the battlefield.
Direct the owner to whoever is in charge of rental/loaner weapons, or to
people you think might have spare weapons.
As members leave weapons-check, advise them to start sparring and having
“pick-up fights” among themselves. This warms up players, and
keeps people from getting bored while the rest of the members finish
As the last people are going through the check-in line, assemble the
Unit Commanders. Write down the names of each unit, and the number
of fighters they brought to the battle. Ask for volunteers to
command armies. If you have more volunteers than you need, have
the volunteers fight in a free-for-all; the last two alive become
Close up Check-in and be sure the cash box and all equipment is locked
away securely, preferably in the trunk of a car.
TIME TO FIGHT!!!
Form up all of the units. If you have fighters who are not in
units (“mercenaries”), give them the option of banding together into
a temporary unit or being chosen individually. Have the commanders pick
teams. The commander from the smallest unit picks first and
continues to pick until his team has more participants than the other
commander’s unit. Then the commanders take turns; whoever’s
team has fewer warriors picks next.
The battle has the following units
Gray Claw 12
Battle Bards 10
White Wolves 10
Free Companions 7
Redi Knights 2
Alaric of the Guild is one commander and Mikekose of the Battle Bards is
Alaric chooses first, since the Guild has fewer fighters. The unit
selection goes like this: Guild chooses the Orcs (3). Since the
Guild still has the fewest warriors on their team (8), they choose
again, and take the Gray Claw (12). This gives the Guild 20 on
their team, to the Battle Bard’s 10. The Battle Bards choose the
Free Companions (7) and the White Wolves (10). Guild then gets the
rest of the Warriors – Mercenaries (3) and Redi Knights (2).
The teams end up like this:
|The teams are approximately
even, and you’re almost ready to fight!
Hand out headbands to each team (blue to one, red to the other).
Often warriors who are unable to fight due to a pulled muscle or other
problem will offer to herald (referee). If you don’t already
have volunteers to be heralds, draft them. A good rule of thumb is
one herald for every 20-30 fighters.
In the scenario above, you’d probably draft two Heralds from the
Battle Bard’s team, which would make the teams exactly even.
Fighters may rotate Herald duty; that is, two Battle Bards could serve
as heralds for the first hour of the battle, then two Free Companions
could take over for the next hour, and so on. That way, everyone
gets to fight and no one feels left out.
If you are doing “resurrection battles” where healers would be
appropriate, tell your commanders to choose one healer for every 20
fighters. In the battle above, you’d probably have two healers
Heralds serve as timekeepers, referees, and scorekeepers. When
there’s an disagreement on the field as to the validity of a hit,
Heralds will mediate the dispute. But the Heralds’ main job is
to keep the battle flowing smoothly. Be sure you give the Heralds
the battle scenario list mentioned near the beginning of these
instruction. With that list in hand, the Heralds always know what
battle comes next, and when it’s time to suggest a break. Also,
if the teams prove to be lopsided, the Heralds will work with the Team
Commanders to trade players in an effort to even things up.
Start your battle with a mass-melee, such as “every unit for itself”
to get everyone’s blood burning. (Don’t be surprised if
everyone gangs up on the biggest units first, to remove the biggest
threats!) Then divide into your two teams and begin working
through the battle scenarios on the list.
Examples of scenarios you can use:
Capture the Flag (two or three teams)
Kill the King
Capture the Princess/Pope
Free-for-all (every man, woman, and child for themselves)
Kill the King/Queen
No Shields or Armor
Make up and try new scenarios, or variations on the battles above.
A word of warning: Complicated scenarios often fail. Try new
things, but remember that the more rules you add in, the harder it will
be for players to remember all the rules, and the easier it will be to
find loopholes that may torpedo your “nifty” scenario in the first
15 minutes. Before testing a new scenario, it’s a good idea to
discuss it with other veterans to see if a fresh look will reveal hidden
AFTER THE BATTLE
Ensure the Heralds’ tunics and any headbands that haven’t been lost
in the woods are turned in to the Check-in Crew.
Collect any rental/loaner weapons or costumes.
POLICE THE BATTLE SITE, making sure Dagorhir leaves the site cleaner
than it was when you arrived.
Take down the “Dagorhir” signs on your way home.
Good fighting. LAY ON!
Questions or Comments?
Post them on the Dagorhir