Most people are unaware that gladiatorial bouts actually involved referees. Even in brutal fights such as these there were rules that governed the contests. The Summa Rudis deck recreates these rules, from giving the combatants a "rest" to restore stamina; to permitting a gladiator to retrieve a weapon or piece of armor; to chastising a gladiator for some offense.


Each card has a suitable "teaching" on it and you, the player, determine when to play the card in order to derive the most advantage from it. The example card to the left indicates that you can halt the action immediately after an opponent gains control, gain a bit of Stamina in the process but most importantly, force another Control Check, one that could put YOU in control instead of your opponent!


The Fate deck provides your gladiator with a chance to have the gods intervene on his behalf. Before each contest, a gladiator receives Fate cards equal to his Fate Rating.

He may employ those cards throughout the match to his best advantage. Do you use them as soon as you can or save them for a more dire occasion . . .but risk wasting them if another opportunity fails to materialize?

Here the Fate card is straight-forward: after you take a wound, reduce the damage by 2, turning a serious wound into a scratch!

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