However I did manage to fit in the first few bouts of a new gladiator campaign this evening. I realised that, as far as I could remember, I'd never used the mighty Mongo in a campaign. I'd promised myself a run with a heavier gladiator, so this was my chance.
I used Victor's campaign rules (which I haven't posted here, but which are similar to mine but with better thought-out tables).
Here's Mongo - sword, light armour, helmet and big shield. He's a novice, so has no skills.
I selected a pool of eighteen opponents for him, all light and medium gladiators (Victor's rules do have the possibility of him facing a very heavy gladiator, but I wasn't sure about that).
In his first bout he faced the spear-wielding Ellenikos, who was more experienced than Mongo, being a canny Tactician with the Attack skill. Mongo knocked him down early on, to the approval of the crowd.
Indeed despite his skills, Mongo completely outfought him. Eventually Ellenikos became so exhausted that he appealed to the crowd for mercy. They were in no mood for mercy. So that was the end of Ellenikos.
Mongo earned both Prestige and a skill from that bout. I went for Agile, since that prevents those awful AP rolls of '1'.
In his second fight Mongo found himself up against a Dimachaerus called Spiculus. Spiculus was also more skilled than Mongo; he also had Tactician and could Dodge. He got in an early hit on his heavier opponent.
The fight then started in earnest, with Mongo deflecting Spiculus's many attacks, and getting in a few hits of his own. With both gladiators wounded, but no conclusion in sight, the referee stopped the fight and called it a draw. This saw no prestige or skills for anyone.
Mongo's third opponent was another Dimachaerus, the unarmoured Melanippe. She too had the Dodge ability (useful when you have no armour), but never got to use it. As the two gladiators circled each other, she suddenly ducked around Mongo's unshielded flank, and downed him with a couple of swift strikes.
Mongo was forced to appeal to the crowd, and despite the short length of the bout they decided to be merciful.
Mongo's fourth opponent. Who could it be?
Another Dimachaerus! This time it was Drusa, who fought with both a helmet and armour.
Both Mongo and Drusa wounded each other fairly quickly. Again, Drusa had the Dodge skill, but she was also a flamboyant Crowd-Pleaser. She lost one of her swords early on, and had her helmet knocked loose as well, but recovered the latter. Mongo soon had her backed against the arena wall, where her room for manoeuvre was seriously compromised, but she rallied, and a lucky stroke knocked Mongo to the ground and, once again, forced him to appeal for mercy.
The crowd wavered ... but decided that his impressive wounds were enough for them, and they eventually decided to let him live (he made the roll purely because of the modifier for being injured). Once again, though, he picked up no skills and no Prestige.
So, after four bouts Mongo has Played 4, Won 1, Lost 2 and Drawn 1, has 2 Prestige and the Agile skill.
To Be Continued.