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Lothlos
Learned Scribe

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  02:02:25  Show Profile Send Lothlos a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
I have never ran a campaign with where all or part (more than one member) of the part competed in arena style combat. I am looking for advice and/or sources that would help me keep track of all the stuff going on. Also we are campaigning in the Realms so suggestions as to what location would be most likely to have arena combat of some sort would also be helpful.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
-J.R.R. Tolkien

BEAST
Master of Realmslore

USA
1714 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  04:30:23  Show Profile  Visit BEAST's Homepage Send BEAST a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In RAS's Exile, the illithids staged arena combat between their psionically-enthralled slaves. That's a starting point.

I seem to vaguely recall the Prisoners' Carnival of Luskan having something like this, too, in addition to the public torture sessions.

"'You don't know my history,' he said dryly."
--Drizzt Do'Urden (The Pirate King, Part 1: Chapter 2)

<"Comprehensive Chronology of R.A. Salvatore Forgotten Realms Works">
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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2400 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  12:14:29  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Illithid thrall combat is common in all illithid cities, not just the one near Menzo (check Illithiad).

As for surface cities that have gladiatorial games, Hillsfar is a big one. They have demihumans fight each other; no humans take part. Gladiatorial games are common across the entire nation of Thay. Other places that are mentioned as having gladiatorial games are Calimshan and the Vilhon Reach, as well as Luskan as was previously mentioned. So really, you've got a lot of options around the Realms.

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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Kentinal
Great Reader

4304 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  12:56:49  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well BD&D did have discussions about how tournaments can be run. Such contests like jousts clearly could be used for a PC vs. PC in a contest that might result in death.
As for tracking arena contests, it is the same as tracking PC vs. NPC. If large scale contests, clearly it would be fairer to track all NPC vs. NPC contests.

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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Hoondatha
Great Reader

USA
2400 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  13:14:54  Show Profile  Visit Hoondatha's Homepage Send Hoondatha a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There's also discussions of tournaments in the 2e Complete Fighter's Handbook.

Doggedly converting 3e back to what D&D should be...
Sigh... And now 4e as well.
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Caladan Brood
Senior Scribe

Norway
410 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  15:44:58  Show Profile  Visit Caladan Brood's Homepage Send Caladan Brood a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I ran a game once where the PCs were captured and forced into arena fighting. The story was as much about their doings "off-time", meeting other NPCs. Once a week ingame there was a fight. I had prepared a table of encounters which I used; sometimes I had several PCs fight a more powerful adversary. Of course there was always the risk of death so I had weak foes in the beginning, gradually building up the danger and eventually the PCs became famed and popular, increasing their status among the arena fighters. Eventually, one character was mauled by a beast of some kind, his blood slaking the sand to the roar of the crowd. Soon after, the PCs made their escape. So what I basically did was run a "Gladiator"-like story in the Realms (if I remember correctly this happened in a self-invented fighting pit run by Orcs and evil men below ground.
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Kyrel
Learned Scribe

150 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  15:56:47  Show Profile  Visit Kyrel's Homepage Send Kyrel a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If I'm not much mistaken, Hillsfar is more or less renowned for it's arena fights, and I believe that Thay also have gladiatorial arenas (at least the "Thayan Gladiator" prestige class from Champions of Ruin seem to suggest it). Also, I wouldn't be surprised if you'd be able to find an arena in many other places.
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MisterX
Learned Scribe

Germany
117 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  21:37:37  Show Profile Send MisterX a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Westgate (at the Dragoncoast) is famous for its Arena.

In my opinion, the changes made to the realms with 4E are neither necessary, nor good. Just stick with the prior realms many gods will thank you.
---
When talking about rules (and related stuff) I always refer to 3.5e unless explicitly noted.
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Lothlos
Learned Scribe

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  22:14:51  Show Profile Send Lothlos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all the contributions so far. The Monstrous Arcana: The Illithiad (2e), The Mysteries of the Moonsea (3e), The Complete Fighters Handbook (2e), all had helpful information. The examples form the novels Exile, and The Spine of the World, where the Prisoners' Carnival of Luskan is described, were also very helpful.

Caladan Brood in your game did you ever have an arena event in which several combatants fought against each other and only one was allowed to win/survive? If so how did you keep track of the NPC's that were fighting each other?

I have not found the references to arena combat in the OD&D material as of this post, but I am still looking.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
-J.R.R. Tolkien

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Kentinal
Great Reader

4304 Posts

Posted - 01 Jul 2013 :  22:35:08  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Lothlos


I have not found the references to arena combat in the OD&D material as of this post, but I am still looking.


OD&D and BD&D are different. The complied, revised rules for BD&D are in the Rules Cyclopedia. Copyright 1991. As I recall, though can check the presentation was in Companion that offered rules for levels 15 to 25, copyright 1984. Expert likely also had some notes, just not going to drag out the copyright date.

OD&D is the White book type thing Chain Mail, BD&D and AD&D were second editions or revisions of the Original game published. Artitic and or financial disputes appears to have cause lawsuits between the two founders.

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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Lothlos
Learned Scribe

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 02 Jul 2013 :  16:04:41  Show Profile Send Lothlos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the clarification. I was able to find all three books you mentioned. There is some good information about mass combat in the Rules Cyclopedia.

While I was looking through old books I found The Complete Gladiator's Handbook (2e Dark Sun), The Glory of Rome Campaign (2e Historical) as well.

Thanks for all the help.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
-J.R.R. Tolkien

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Caladan Brood
Senior Scribe

Norway
410 Posts

Posted - 02 Jul 2013 :  17:25:24  Show Profile  Visit Caladan Brood's Homepage Send Caladan Brood a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Lothlos, I think I did, in those cases I simply decided who won and who died "in the background" so the players wouldn't have to watch me roll dice all night (or I rolled a die to determine winner/loser quickly).
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BEAST
Master of Realmslore

USA
1714 Posts

Posted - 02 Jul 2013 :  17:25:26  Show Profile  Visit BEAST's Homepage Send BEAST a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I believe that the FRCG (4E) says that the latest King Obould has an arena for his orcs in the Citadel of Many-Arrows, too.

"'You don't know my history,' he said dryly."
--Drizzt Do'Urden (The Pirate King, Part 1: Chapter 2)

<"Comprehensive Chronology of R.A. Salvatore Forgotten Realms Works">
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Ze
Learned Scribe

Italy
146 Posts

Posted - 02 Jul 2013 :  17:53:36  Show Profile Send Ze a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm pretty sure there's an arena in Maerimydra (sp?).
It was built by the drow dwelling there, but it still stands even after the CotSQ occupation.
And it was mapped out in the module.
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MisterX
Learned Scribe

Germany
117 Posts

Posted - 03 Jul 2013 :  11:27:30  Show Profile Send MisterX a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ze

I'm pretty sure there's an arena in Maerimydra (sp?).
It was built by the drow dwelling there, but it still stands even after the CotSQ occupation.
And it was mapped out in the module.



Correct, there is a map and some background-fluff. No Cruch concerning mass/arena-combat as I recall.

@Lothlos: If you're gaming with 3e, just take the challenge-rating into account when determining winners or losers. As a possible rule of thumb, the monster with the higher CR should do the job. Do the rest with epic descriptions of the fight. ;)

In my opinion, the changes made to the realms with 4E are neither necessary, nor good. Just stick with the prior realms many gods will thank you.
---
When talking about rules (and related stuff) I always refer to 3.5e unless explicitly noted.
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Lothlos
Learned Scribe

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 03 Jul 2013 :  13:47:07  Show Profile Send Lothlos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
@Mister X - some combination of 3 and 3.5e is what I will be using. I like the CR idea.

Thanks for the CotSQ reference and the 4e lore.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
-J.R.R. Tolkien


Edited by - Lothlos on 03 Jul 2013 13:48:42
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