High fantasy filled with dragons, monsters, relics and even medieval combat are some of the many things that you can find in the Amtgard, Sun Fall Abbey. The chapter is one of the many groups within Texas dedicated to the Live Action Role Playing game. The goal is to have fun and bring new people into the hobby.
Amtgard is a system similar to that of something like Dungeons and Dragons. However, it is tweaked in a way to make it easier for people to bring the gameplay into the real world. There are 12 base classes which the player can take with them, being able to reach up to level six in each class. Each of these classes has different abilities. They gain over levels that can help to make combat faster and more diverse.
Building a character is well paced with players choosing one of those starting classes to determine what type of weapons they are able to use and what abilities they might get later. These choices can determine the path of your character. This, mixed with a name, gives your full persona.
“It takes about a year to go from level one to level six in a class,” said Rollie Norman, the Duke of Sun Fall Abbey and resident of Nacogdoches. “Because you have to sign in to get a credit to get to level up each week.”
The group takes part in things called Battle Games. These are scenarios built up by people within the community where they can create siege styled gameplay at their weekly park meets. In the siege, they raid a castle in a two-team struggle.
“We are here every Sunday and do [Arts and Sciences] fighter training is every Tuesday and you just come out learn how to whack people properly,” said Jeffery, a resident of Nacogdoches and a member of Sun Fall Abbey. “We have tournaments which are really cool and the people are great. You can learn a lot from the people around here.”
The group also works to produce various crafts under what they call Arts and Sciences. People were creating wood burnings; various foods were out for people to have and people were talking and sharing their various ideas on various equipment for the people to make.
The weapon equipment is made from soft foam with a PVC core. The core is used to help stiffen the weapon with another sort of stronger flexible core in the middle to give it some more strength to allow it take hits. The weapons themselves have about an inch of foam around the core that allows them to not hurt anyone.
“Come to the park on a Sunday and talk to one of the officers,” said Joseph Houston, a history major from Nacogdoches. “We have loaner gear for new players, and we are more than happy to teach new players how to make new equipment.”
Sun Fall Abbey is just one of the groups in the Kingdom of the Wetlands, which is this area of Texas with chapters across the United States.
Sun Fall Abbey meets in Pecan Park every Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.