Nerf Dueling at the Steampunk Symposium Games

This weekend’s Nerf Duel at the International Steampunk Symposium was a glorious event for fame and glory. Heavy casualties were suffered, and only a few triumphant winners emerged. How does one nerf duel? It involves trying to hit your opponent with foam dart shot from a nerf gun–a properly repainted nerf gun of course. These are not brightly colored children’s toys. These are hard-core Steampunk weapons. Since nerf markmanship is an uncertain prospect at best, actual skill has little to do with the outcome of the duel, and an elaborate set of rules instead helps determine who is the winner and who is dead.

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1. How to Play Rock, Paper, Scissors

Before the nerf duel could begin, someone must win the right to choose the weapons. This is determined by first playing a game of rock-paper-scissors. The winner then called a coin toss. The winner of the coin toss chose the duelling pistols, and the loser of the coin toss chose which side of the shooting range to walk.

A demonstration of rock-paper-scissors was required to help clear up confusion on the part of some contestants.

2. How to Count to Five

Back to back, the contestants walk five paces away from each other, turn, and fire. This requires counting on the part of the judges, and understanding the counting on the part of the contestants. Swept up in the excitement, both occasionally had difficulty. This is easily understandable since steampunk math rarely follows normal principles. Or is it that some of the numbers got lost in Wonderland somewhere?

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Peter B Slayer hosting the Symposium Games and Nerf Dueling.

3. No Dodging

Shame on you sir! Having committed yourself to the ancient and noble art of nerf duelling, are you going to wince away at the last possible second to avoid a blow? A stalwart duellist must stand steadfast and bravely face whatever foam darts may come his way.

4. If You Get Shot, You Are Dead

If a nerf dart hits either of the opponents, that person is eliminated and the other person is the victor. If both opponents are struck by a dart, both opponents are dead. After all, you don’t get second chances in life–why should nerf guns be any more forgiving?

5. Protect the Innocent

As nerf duelling is an honourable sport, it would be unthinkable that an innocent bystander should be shot by accident. It was therefore necessary to form a human shield wall along one side of the shooting range, lest stray bullets should fly into the restaurant and hit someone innocently enjoying their tea. Many members of the shield wall were wounded during the course of the competition, but such is the price paid for the collective good of the Symposium Games.

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