Introduction to SCA Combat

Salutations, and en guarde!

In the SCA there are several combat forms.  Heavy combat, Light combat (Archery), Period Fencing (Rapier), Seige Warfare and Equestrian. 

The Kingdom Marshals page contains all the rules and forms relating to SCA combat forms.  Please read the rules before making your armour.  If you wish to come along to a fighters practice to see what its about, and if you want to have a try, please bring your own groin protection (e.g. cricket or martial arts 'box') and a water bottle. 

Fighters Practice is where the combatants of Darton practice their art. 

Contact the Marshal for details about Darton heavy fighter and rapier practices. 

The Role of the Darton Marshal is to be responsible for promoting combat, of all types, in Darton.  They may have deputies who promote some of these forms.  As part of the Marshal's report to the Moot at Darton Anniversary, they will give an account of the state of the Darton Militia. 

The Darton Champion is selected by a Heavy Combat Tournament held each year at Darton Anniversary.  Originally the role of Champion was open to any who wished to enter the tournament, but in A.S. XXXX, reflecting on the growing strength of the Shire, it was felt appropriate to restrict the role of Darton Champion to locals only. 

Past Darton Champions include: 

A.S LII- To be contested in August

A.S XLVIII-XLI- Master Bernard Stirling

A.S XLVII-  Lord Ulrich von Mannheim



A.S XLIV- Lord Ulrich von Mannheim

A.S XL-XLIII Baron Sir Asbjorn Pedersen

A.S. XXXIX Sir Inigo Missaglia?

A.S. XXXVII-XXXVIII Sir Ulf de Wilton

A.S. XXXVI Baron Callum McLeod

A.S. XXXIV Sir Vitale Giustiniani

Combat Resources 


Coat of Plates Pattern <broken link> A pattern for building a coat of plates, with Word, CAD and WMF versions.

Armour Archive A site with discussion boards, patterns for making armour, and essays on armouring.

Butted Mail A guide for making mail armour, including patterns for coifs and hauberks, and excellent advice on tailoring mail to fit.

The Arador Armour Library A site with discussion forums, essays on armouring and galleries of period and reconstructed armour.

Heavy Combat Advice

No Shield to Hide Behind A guide to fighting with two-handed weapons.

Legio Draconis This site has a variety of articles on diverse topics, including: health and fitness, melee and tournament combat, and advice on Roman costume.

The Way of the Warrior <link removed> Another site with links to a number of articles on SCA combat.

Lochac Fighters List A page for all Lochac fighters to discuss fighting whether it be heavy, light or fencing, tournament or war, the philosophy, skills and tactics thereof. To discuss the future and past and build a better fighting fraternity in Lochac.

Military Science

De Re Militari Homepage of the Society for Medieval Military History. The site has many links to primary and secondary sources.

The military institutions of the Romans An e-text of the 1767 translation of the "Epitoma Rei Militaris" by Vegetius, the most important European manual on the art of war in the middle ages.

Swords A site with discussion forums, picture galleries, and many feature articles on swords and sword collecting.

The Oakeshott Institute has a useful article on the metallurgical study of armour and weapons.

War Unit Combat

The Pentamere Free Company This site has several articles on leadership in SCA combat.

SCA-War A discussion list devoted to an exchange of information and experience regarding war tactics and strategy (and related subjects) as practiced by the SCA.

Military logistics is the art and science of planning and carrying out the movement and maintenance of military forces. This page provides links to information about travelling to events in Lochac, and to merchants who sell equipment that can be used in SCA martial arts activities. 

Merchants of War

Living History New Zealand Manufacturers of munitions grade armour, knives, and metal weapons for re-enactment and display purposes.

The Ring Lord An online store in Canada that claims to be the world's largest supplier of in stock chainmail supplies.

Icefalcon Armoury An online store of medium-high quality SCA armour. As supplies permit, they have some armour built using aircraft aluminium.

Waldryk's Arms & Armour An online store with frequent updates to its in stock page.

Windrose Armoury An online store, which is now the supplier of the injection moulded rubber thrusting tips that were made by Mandrake Armoury. They also do custom armour. Our unofficial policy for including links to Merchants is that someone in the Shire of Darton should recommend them for inclusion here after having had business dealings with them.

War Fighting with the Darton Militia

Darton has a long history of participating as a unit in War Scenarios while away from home. We have livery, and a bit of a reputation for boosting smaller sides, where we are not fighting for the King.


Membership of the Darton Militia is open to all authorised combatants residing within the borders of Darton.


The militia uniform is per pale or and sable (Gold and black divided vertically.) A badge of a gold hunting horn may also be worn. All combatants intending to take the field with the Darton Militia are encouraged to wear the badge and/or the livery in a garment of their choice.


The Darton Militia originated as a simple name for a group of fighters from the Shire of Darton who chose to fight together when at events. The Darton Militia was named as such at least as early as A.S. XXXVIII (2004 C.E.), after the Shire was renamed Darton in the August of that year. In the Shire's petition, to Their Majesties Alaricus and Kissa of the Kingdom of Caid, for cipient recognition of the Shire, it was noted that the Shire had "raised a levy of fighters."

Notable Deeds of the Militia

Willim de Bredon of Darchester was the first fighter from Darton to authorise, at Canterbury Faire in A.S. XXXIV (although the written record of this, alas, has not come down to us), while Master Bernard Stirling was the first fighter to authorise in Darton, at Darton Anniversary in A.S. XXXV.

At St. Catherine's Faire in November A.S. XXXVIII the Darton Militia did successfully contest in a melee tournament for possession of a "Relic of the Cross". At Canterbury Faire the following February, the Darton Militia defended the Relic of the Cross, but was defeated by the Fighters of the Barony of Southron Gaard. Travelling to these lands from the East Kingdom, the engineer Oskar der drachen auf Klagenfurt, did settle in the northern marches of Darton (now known as Transalpine Darton), and there he constructed that marvel of the world, a wheeled ballista. At Canterbury Faire in A.S. XXXX, the Darton Militia did side with the Barony of Ildhafn, and this aid was instrumental in the victory of Ildhafn's forces over the Barony of Southron Gaard.  

Travelling to War

Advice for travelling to Canterbury Faire.

Advice for travelling to Rowany Festival.

Advice for travelling to Pennsic.

War Scenarios 

by Lord Miles Warde of Darton. 

Army of Darkness

Divide the combatants into two teams. One team should outnumber the other by 10:1. The smallest team are the Zombies, the larger team are the Humans. Zombies may not run during the scenario, even when 'dead'. Zombies may resurrect from a predetermined point on the battlefield. When a Human is killed they join the Zombie team and resurrect. (Note: the Humans cannot win this scenario.)


Divide the combatants into three teams. This scenario requires at least 15 combatants.

Using haybales, build a ship in the middle of the war field. The ship should comfortably fit all of a team, and provide reasonable cover against archers. Along one side of the ship, mark out the edge of the ocean. Combatants who step into the ocean 'drown' instantly. If the combatants include non-contact combatants, such as Archers, a 'lifeboat' should be placed for them in the ocean so that they can escape from melees.

One team (the ship's crew) defends the shipwreck. Place suitable tokens inside the ship to represent the cargo (preferably something that can be safely carried). The other two teams are rivals, both attempting to loot the ship's cargo. At the end of any desired time limit, the team with the bulk of the cargo wins. This scenario can be played with or without resurrections.

Viking Battles

This three part scenario is inspired by Paddy Griffith's The Viking Art of War.

The Archer's Duel

For a pre-determined period of time, combatants may not come within 5 metres of each other. The goal of the scenario is for the archers to kill as many of the opposing side as possible, while the heavy combatants try and stay alive.

At the end of the time limit, all 'dead' fighters return to life for part two.

Shield Walls

Nominate a resurrection point for each side. If a combatant was killed in part one, they can resurrect once. If a combatant was not killed in part one, they can resurrect twice. Fight an open field battle until only one side remains.


A Heavy only scenario. As the battle continues, the shields break and splinter, until eventually they are discarded. All heavy combatants with suitable hand protection must discard their shields. Heavy combatants without suitable hand protection are requested to take up the smallest available shields. Fight an open field battle until only one side remains.

Piggy in the Middle

This scenario requires four or more teams. One team ('the piggy') starts with twice as many combatants as the other teams ('the wolves'), which are of equal size. For example, if you have 30 combatants, then piggy has ten combatants, and the four wolf teams have five combatants each.

The piggy team takes the center of the field. The wolf teams then start on the edge of the field, each team in a different place.

The winning team is the last team standing. Note that members of different wolf teams can kill each other at any time.