Welcome to "Adventures in Lead", a blog dedicated to the hobby of miniature wargaming. The figures and terrain on this site are mainly for a campaign set in exotic "Indostan", a distant land bearing remarkable similarities to 18th century India during the Seven Years War. Bits and pieces from other projects may pop up here as well from time to time, including colonials, gladiators, pirates, dinosaur-hunting and even some RPG'ing.
The actual campaign journal and after action reports for the Indostan campaign can be found on their own blog - "Indostan: The Jewel in the Crown", the link to which is found by clicking the small image below-left.
If you do find anything remotely interesting on this blog please leave a comment, it's what keeps these sites going and their authors motivated - Thanks for looking.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Gladiators: Drusix vs Lyphades

In a villa outside of Rome the peers of a wealthy patrician have gathered to witness a private gladiator pairing between Drusix, murmillo, and Lyphades, thraex. The gladiators have been chosen carefully and are considered well matched.
The patrician gives the signal and the two gladiators rush to meet each other. Lyphades is the quicker and he springs towards Drusix, but the murmillo is already launching his own attack. The thraex is checked mid step and begins to be pushed back. Drusix lashes out with his heavy scutum, but his opponent parries the strike with his own shield. Lyphades attempts to counter one of the murmillo's strikes but fails to land the blow.
The pair close for battle - Drusix (left) and Lyphades (right).
Drusix takes advantage of the thraex's mistake and drives his gladius into Lyphades' outstretched arm, the blade cutting a deep furrow through the amour there. The thraex grunts in pain and blood flows freely down his arm and over the sica grasped in his hand. The gathered Romans let out a bloodthirsty cheer. Lyphades quickly threatens the murmillo with a quick attack that thankfully stops the murmillo's onslaught.
Drusix drives his gladius into the thraex's sword arm.
But not for long. Drusix pushes forward again, driving Lyphades back. He can tell the serious wound will quickly take its toll on the thraex. Drusix ducks below his shield and lauches his whole body at Lyphades in an attempt to knock him down. The thraex attempts to move out of the way, but he is hit squarely by the murmillo, stumbles backwards but does not go down.
Lyphades' bleeding wound is taking its toll.
Pushed dangerously close to the edge of the arena, Lyphades warily circles the murmillo in an attempt to avoid being hemmed in. He retreats from Drusix momentarily, the Romans hissing at his back and attempts to catch his breath. The murmillo spins to face the crowd, raises his arms triumphantly and roars a muffled battle-cry through his helm. He senses victory.
Lyphades turns the combat away from the wall.
Panting heavily Lyphades closes on the murmillo again, but his attacks fail to circumvent the large shield. The flurry leaves the thraex spent and Drusix stops giving ground, launching his own attacks instead. Each blow is a simple basic strike that drives the thraex back again, each blow becoming more dangerous than the last. The murmillo's last attack is well aimed and backed with considerable force. It lands just as Lyphades' foot touches the lip of the enclosed arena. Drusix's blade drives deeply through the shoulder of the thraex's shield arm, a bright spout of blood washes over the sand.
Backed into a corner and wounded again, Lyphades crashes to the ground.
Lyphades stumbles and crashes to the ground heavily, near exhausted. With all his effort he attempts to quickly stand but the looming shape of his adversary prevents him from getting to his feet. Drusix rains a couple of blows down onto the fallen thraex, who miraculously fends them off, parrying with his shield and rolling out of the way.
Lymphades bleeds heavily on the ground, his life ebbing from him.
Drusix knows the match is won, the Romans are calling for blood and he turns to them drops his shield and raises his bloodied gladius. Turning back to Lyphades he sees the thraex can not stand and so his opponent feebly raises two fingers in surrender, begging for missio. But it is too late for such thoughts. Drusix fought too well and avoided all of the thraex's attack. The crowd howls for blood and the patrician gives the word. Drusix raises the gladius again and drives it down through Lyphades' shoulder-blade. Victory is Drusix's!!
An unpainted Charon ensures Lyphades is not foxing.
Lyphades' wound and bleed counters at the end of the match.
Drusix is in fine form, a little puffed, but in a much better place than his opponent.

My opponent played the mighty Drusix and I was unfortunately the flawed Lyphades.The rules are my own set I have been working on for quite some time with the help of Dave. We had a great time playing this gladiator match and the game only took about 1.5 hours, pretty good for such an exciting battle.


  1. That is a really neat set up. The cards for tracking the damage is interesting. How does it play? Does it work for multiple players?

  2. Thanks Chris. I've tried to make the game play as non-static as possible, a problem I have faced with many other gladiator rules. The game plays with a back and forward flow, where you need to string attacks together to stand a better chance of hitting. Fatigue also plays an important role, especially with the heavy gladiators. The campaign side of things is suited to more than two participants but the gladiator matches will always be pairs - as in real life. Mass battles were really left to the criminals and barbarians and could just as easy be represented by an ancient skirmish ruleset.

  3. Very cool; will need to check ou these rules. Dean

  4. Greate AAR !

    Seems to be very interesting rules, I havent found any Gladiator game yet that give a interesting fight man o man. but your rules seems to do that, remember me a bit about roleplaying, might be the way to go for the individual combats.

    Any plan to publish them in the near future?

    Best regards Michael

  5. Thanks for the interest gents. In short yes I do intend on releasing the rules.
    @Michael - the problem exactly that "forced" me to invent a set of my own - a lack of any real gladiator rules that captures the feel of a man on man duel.

  6. Looks like a great. Set of rules. I hope you do well with it.

  7. very nice!. Fun fast furious battle! Would be easy to play solo! Hope you sell a million rule sets.

  8. Looks great. Id love to try out these rules once you get the published.

  9. To continue from LAF:

    Publish the rules, publish the rules, publish the rules.....

  10. Oh I say that looks fabulous, wonderfully tempting.

  11. Thanks for all the support guys - much appreciated.