Welcome to Amtgard! This is a brief introduction to the basic rules and etiquette by which we play. It is my wish that this information will help you to get into the spirit of things and give you a quick overview of what it is that we do. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask anyone at all.
Amtgard is a live-action gaming/role-play system that is dedicated to making fantasy & medieval times merge into one. The primary purpose of Amtgard is recreational. We emphasize safety and fun above all else. We are a nationwide non-profit, non-sectarian group and we welcome any and everyone who wants to learn more about what we do (minors must have a consent form signed by their parents before being allowed to engage in any physical combat). Amtgard is unlike other gaming organizations in that we employ magic-using classes. In addition to Warriors, Barbarians, Monks, Archers, and Assassins, we also have Healers, Druids, Wizards, and Bards as well as a few other classes not listed here. We engage in a variety of scenarios from huge battles to elaborate quests that can stretch over the course of a weekend. We have out-of-town "battles" with rival Kingdoms and host all-weekend camping events including massive wars, feasts, and arts & sciences competitions.
We fight with foam-padded replicas of medieval weapons. Our equipment is simple & inexpensive to create. The rules are basic and easy to learn. There are no dues to pay. All you need is a good attitude, a bit of creativity, and a sense of fun.
First of all, you will need to get a rulebook. The rulebook gives you all the specific information on all the classes and spells. Rulebooks can generally be either purchased for a minimum fee or borrowed from someone at the park. Regarding garb or clothes, the sooner you get some, the better. It helps you to immerse yourself in your role if you look the part. If you either have no idea what to wear or have no sewing skills, ask around. There will be someone who can either consult with you & help you decide what you want to make, help you make your garb, or even make it for you. There are a few restrictions on garb regarding which colors indicate which character classes. For the specifics on this, consult your rulebook. If you are the creative type, please express yourself! Designing your garb is your chance to really stand out and be noticed. If you wish, you can design a personal symbol and incorporate that into your garb (sew it onto the front of a tabard, transfer it onto a shield, etc.). The possibilities are endless. The only restriction regarding devices is the phoenix, which is generally reserved for Paladins and Anti-Paladins (members who have been Knights for at least 12 weeks).
Regarding combat, please try to follow the basic rule: "Think before you swing." Fighting takes a little while to get the hang of. There will be plenty of people to show you the ropes and help you learn the system. Getting your own weapons made as soon as possible will help out tremendously and there will always be people willing to assist you and answer all your questions.
Those of you with Internet access may want to check out www.amtgard-wl.com for the Kingdom of the Wetlands' home page. This Kingdom encompasses most of Southeast Texas and has groups in College Station, Tomball, Tyler, Nacogdoches, Palestine, Lufkin, Jasper, Beaumont, Houston, Pasadena, Hitchcock, & Galveston. You can also visit www.amtgard.com to see the Official Amtgard home page. The official page has various documents that you can download, including "A Newbie's Guide to Amtgard" and patterns for making costumes.
I hope you enjoy your time with us in Amtgard. It is a really fun organization to be involved with and we are always happy to have new people visit us. If you ever have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask and someone will be delighted to help you out.