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Pennsic 43 Siege Weapon Rules

Society Siege Rules will govern all Siege activity at Pennsic 43 unless otherwise stated below.


  1. All Siege Marshals must wear eye protection such as protective shatterproof eye wear or a helm. Siege Marshals should wear a standard black marshal's tabard and carry a marshal's staff. If you are going to marshal in armor wear a marshal's tabard over the armor. If wearing a helmet, a drape or other distinctive marking is required to differentiate you from a fighter on the field. Please be at Marshal's Point 45 minutes prior to any battle you will be marshaling. All meetings for siege marshals will be posted at Inspection Point.

Siege Ammunition Damage

  1. Blows from siege-class ammunition (1-pound rocks, 4-tennis-ball clusters, and 48-inch ballista bolts; all of which are colored yellow) will be judged fatal upon striking any legal target area and will kill through shields if the shield is being carried. Siege munitions are considered spent upon striking a weapon, a fighter, the ground, or a battlefield structure. Only the first fighter hit is dead.
  2. Pavises (i.e.: grounded shields not supported by a combatant) are destroyed by a single hit from siege engine ammunition. Combatants behind the pavise are not killed.
  3. Small Arms Munitions (single tennis balls and tube-shafted combat archery arrows and bolts) fired from a siege engine will be treated as combat archery projectiles.

When a Hold is Called

  1. All Holds will be general holds for siege engines unless a scenario specifically designates local holds for artillery.
  2. An engine may not be loaded during a Hold and any munitions must be removed from the engine until "Lay On!" is called. If the engine is already cocked it may remain cocked unless the engineer chooses to uncock it, or a Siege Marshal asks that it be uncocked. During long holds, decocking is advised if it is safe to do so.
  3. If an engine is cranking the string back when a 'Hold' is called, it must be safely returned to a non-cocked state. For engines that can stop the cranking at any point (such as with use of a ratchet) they are to stop once Hold is called and not resume until "Lay On!" has been called.
  4. The crew of an engine shall not fire its ammunition once a Hold has been called. Violations will result in both the engine and crews removal from the battle and possible disciplinary action.


  1. All fighters are engaged with siege engines at all times during a battle no matter which way they are facing.
  2. Direct fire weapons shall not be discharged against personnel at a range of less than 30 feet or in such a manner as to willfully allow the projectile to leave the Battle Area Proper or land in designated Unsafe Zones.
  3. No engine will be discharged while any non-crew person is within a 5 foot range of moving parts. Larger safety zones may be designated where necessary.

Destroying Siege Engines and Structures

Crew Requirements

  1. Anyone crewing an engine in combat situations must be authorized in siege.
  2. Crew members wishing to defend an engine may do so as long as all action takes place at least 5 feet from the engine.
  3. Siege personnel may choose to leave the engine and fight if they wish. Remember, if the number of crewmembers at the engine goes below the minimum number required for that class machine, it may not be operated.
  4. Siege engine crews are to be treated as any other fighter on the field. If they are authorized for other weapons forms and have a secondary weapon, they may use it. If not, they may be killed as an unarmed opponent; if they yield, DO NOT strike them.

Siege Engine and Structure Inspection

Engine Inspection

  1. Preliminary inspection of the engine shall be made before any shots are fired. This inspection will be to check for structural integrity of the components of the engine. This structural inspection will be done according to the specifications published in the Society rules.
  2. The operational demonstration phase of the inspection shall, at minimum, consist of 4 shots in a row without mechanical failure from the engine when configured for the maximum power it will use on the battlefield. These 4 shots shall deliver the ammunition between 40 and 80 yards (36.6 to 73.2 meters). The siege engine shall consistently deliver the ammunition in a reasonably straight and stable path downrange (curving due to cross wind is acceptable).
  3. Static inspection for stability of the engine, mechanical observation of the framework and the mechanism shall be made after the firing.
  4. The crews of direct fire engines should be willing to receive a shot from their engine at minimum range, while in armor, should it be requested.

Siege Tower and other Structure Inspection

  1. Inspection will include at a minimum; structural integrity, stability, condition of hardware, condition of any safety devices (barriers, walls, etc.). Inspection will ideally be made with a maximum load of armored combatants on board the siege structure. Inspection will include a demonstration of mobility if the structure is designed to be mobile. (Please refer to Society Siege rules for Approved Structure Construction.)
  2. If you are planning to bring a siege structure, make sure that the Siege MIC has been informed of it and inspected it prior to a battle, so you do not bring it miles and miles and then find out it will not be allowed.

Ammunition Inspection

  1. All ammunition must now abide by the half inch rule. They may not penetrate a face grill by more than a half inch. Ballista bolt fins must use materials or techniques that abide by this rule.
  2. All missiles must be inspected for that day's use and be so marked with the color of the day.
  3. Your siege ammunition will be inspected when your siege engine is inspected. You can also have your siege ammunition inspected at Inspection Point if there is a siege marshal present. Check postings at Inspection Point for specific times. Siege ammunition inspection will also take place on the battlefield immediately after a siege battle
  4. All siege ammunition must be labeled with the owner’s name, group, and Kingdom in English on a printed label. If a group owns the ammunition, then you use the group’s name and Kingdom.
  5. After each battle that uses siege ammunition, the bolts, rocks, and other approved siege projectiles will be re-inspected for the next day’s battle and marked with that color of the day. Please help clean the field and bring all siege missiles to a designated spot to be re-inspected.
  6. Siege ammunition inspections at Inspection Point will cease 45 minutes prior to the posted start time of any battle.

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