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Combat in the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light

Overview and General Information

The fighting in the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light is based on the ability of a fighter to hit his/her opponent. Unlike many live-action role-playing groups (LARPs), the idea is to hit as quickly and as skillfully as you can, and not to rely on "bonus damage" done by your particular weapon.
Also, our weapons are no color-coded, as all damage is based on the area of the body on which a fighter is hit, and not with which weapon.
The general assumption is that a steel sword slicing would do equal damage to an iron mace crushing.

Basic Rules

There are a few general rules for combat within the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light:
Use common sense; the blows you score on your opponent(s) should be solid enough to be felt, but not so hard that bones are broken. On the other hand, don't turn into a little flower child and adopt the sissy "touch is a kill" rule.
Don't hit your opponent(s)' head. This should be obvious. In the heat of battle, fighters tend to get excited, and sometimes swing harder than is truly necessary. If you hit somebody in the head, that could be really dangerous (not to mention painful.)
The same goes for elbows and knees. They're delicate joints, relatively, so don't give them an excuse to shatter by hitting them.
There are a few taboo regions of hitting besides those mentioned above. I should think it needless to point out (but I will anyway, just in case I have to) that hitting guys in the crotch in a definite no. Likewise, stabbing ladies in the . . . er, chest, is also forbidden, for the same reasons.

Point Scores

The system the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light use now is different than many "live role-playing" organizations. In our system, each fighter is assigned 8 "hit points." When those hit points have been depleted to zero, the fighter is considered dead.
By dead, I mean that the fighter can no longer fight, throw weapons, or shout encouragement/warnings to comrades. In fact, dead fighters don't do much of anything except lie on the ground and fester in the sun (at least until the battle is over).
Here's the table:

Location Strike Stab
Legs (below the waist) 1 2
Arms and Shoulders 2 4
Back 4 kill
Chest 4 kill
Stomach 3 6

Combat Archery Rules

Archery is dangerous. There's no way around it.
However, the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light utilize a fairly reliable and relatively safe system for combat archery.
The rules are as follows for combat archery:
1. Arrows must have the field (or hunting, etc...) tips removed, and a penny attached at the striking end of the arrow.
2. All arrows must have at least one inch of padding (not tightly wrapped) covering the striking penny-head.
3. Any bows (or crossbows) that have a draw weight of over 30 pounds, must not be fired at more than half draw at point plank (less than 25 yards) range.
4. All bows shall be traditional (longbow) or recurve. Absolutely no compound bows shall be allowed in combat.
5. Any crossbow used in combat archery must also be traditional. No gears, pulleys, etc... must be visible.

Weapons Allowances

Weapons allowed by the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light include pretty much anything that was used before about 1500 A.D. (this does not include any kind of firearm).
This includes, but is not restricted to:
Swords (long and short)
Ball and Chain/Flail/Morning Star
Hand Axe/War Axe/Throwing Axe
Longbow/Recurve Bow/Crossbow
There are certain rules for how weapons must be constructed, as follows:

Weapons Construction

1. All weapons (with the exception of bows) must be made of PVC pipe. Wood, lead pipe, etc.. are not allowed.
2. Any ranged weapons (i.e., bows, crossbows, etc...) must be under 50 lbs in draw weight
3. Any tip that is used to stab (i.e, dagger points, sword points, spear points, etc...) must have at least two inches worth of closed-cell foam padding reaching beyond the tip of the PVC frame of the weapon.
4. The edges of striking weapons (i.e., axes, swords, etc...) must be solidly padded with closed-cell foam padding, and have a suitable amount fo give.

Armor Allowances

Most folk in the Mercenaries of Shadow and Light don't wear armor; since we fight with light-caliber "weapons," armor isn't necessary.
However, if you wish to wear armor to keep from getting brusied, or you just think it would be cool and fun, go right ahead. There are only a few rules we have:
First, understand that any armor you wear will only protect you in real ife; all damage points will remain the same.
Second, any armor you wear must be made properly; that is, if it's made of some sort of metal, then the edges must be filed down and smooth.

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