Symposium Games – Toy Gun Dueling Rules

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This is it everyone, our fourth year of solving things with darts of fury and toy based attempted foamicide. The rules haven’t changed too much over the years, but there are a couple of changes this year so pay attention: The rules below can also be downloaded as a PDF.



Each competing group will be allowed to submit a MAXIMUM of three duelists for the event. This number may change depending on available time. For this reason we will have each group present two duelists and one reserve duelist if they wish.

 NOTICE: The International Steampunk Symposium will be providing “matched” toy dueling pistols this year. The make and model of this pistol will be announced. You may bring your own if you have one, but privately owned pistols will only be used if there is a malfunction with the matched set. On the off chance that it is needed, your own toy gun must meet the following specifications:

  • Only TOY guns that shoot foam DARTS (Micro or Mega size) or DISCS will be used.
  • Your toy gun must fit into the size category of a pistol or sidearm. If you think it might be too big to be called a sidearm, it probably is, but the event organizer will make the final judgment on what qualifies.
  • Performance modded toy guns are allowed, but must be inspected by the judge for safety before use in a duel.
  • It is suggested that your toy gun be painted to look steamy… but it is not required.
  • The number of rounds your toy gun holds is immaterial, but let it be known that you are only allowed to LOAD a maximum of six rounds for a duel. If you choose to use a toy gun that holds less than six at a time, you may carry extra darts to reload, up to a total of six darts on your person. This means that if your pistol holds five, you can carry one extra to reload, if your pistol holds four, you can carry two extra to reload and so on.

The Brackets:

This will be a single elimination tournament. If there are many duelists, two pairs may duel simultaneously to save time in the early rounds. Symposium Judges will be used to settle any disagreements regarding who is hit and who isn’t. The Judges’ ruling is final.

After the first shot is fired in the tournament, no more competitors will be allowed to enter the competition, so show up on time.

The brackets will be handled in a simple manner, those who win their round go to a holding area until the next round of duels begins, those who lose their round will join the spectators or leave, whichever they wish.

In the case of a tie in the final duel, the duel will be repeated with both competitors wearing goggles to limit peripheral vision. (Provided by the judge) If there is STILL a tie, both finalists will split the available points for first and second place equally.

A Duel:

  • SONY DSCStarting back to back, take five paces on a count by the judge, then when directed, turn and fire.
  • Dodging of more than one step in any direction will disqualify the shooter.
  • If one party is “wounded”, the other is the victor.
  • If both parties are wounded on the first shot, both shall move on.
  • If the first volley does not produce a hit, both parties may continue to shoot at will from where they stand until one is hit or both run out of ammo.
  • If the round produces no victor after all darts or discs have been fired, both duelists are eliminated for lack of shooting skill. (Except in the final round)

A note regarding honor:

Dueling is a test of honor between gentle folk. . .who want to kill each other over trivial things. . . well you know what I’m saying. Don’t be that lout who refuses to accept defeat when your opponent and judges have declared you eliminated. In fact, if you even THINK you have been hit, be the gentleman (or gentlewoman) and call yourself out.


The participants who are dueling are responsible for cleaning up the darts they loosed, no matter who they belong to. If participants can get others to clean up their darts (I’ve always wanted a valet), that’s acceptable, but participants are responsible for it. The Symposium is not responsible for lost darts.

Victory Points:

  • 1st Place – 50 points
  • 2nd Place – 30 points
  • 3rd Place – 20 points

These rules are subject to be changed by the organizer or judges based on the conditions at the event.



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