Boffer Fighting

Full Contact Padded Weapon Combat


What is Boffer Fighting?

Boffer fighting is a combative contact sport that uses foam-padded weapons. Boffer combat is very popular in the live-action role-playing community and is very safe when properly regulated.

At EpicWrite, boffer fighting is the only allowed form of full contact combat. We have boffer combat during scenes at our role-playing events,  in tournaments at our EpicFaire events, and soon at our EpicFight events.

All boffer weapons at our events are inspected before they are allowed in combat to make sure they adhere to our rigid design standards. We have regulations for both design and use of the boffers in fights.

EpicWrite’s Standard Boffer Materials

Core – PVC Piping:

PVC is light and slightly flexible. Our standard width is 3/4 inch PVC at 1/8” thick (external width will be 1”).

Padding – Foam Pool Noodles:

Pool Noodles are easy to come by and offer an excellent amount of padding for heavy blows. Internal width should be 1 inch so it fits SNUGLY over the PVC.

Seal – Duct Tape:

Duct Tape is very durable, and not very abrasive, it holds everything together and rarely causes scraping on skin.

Projectile – None Allowed:

Usage of projectiles of any kind at EpicWrite is not allowed. This includes but is not limited to: NERF blasters, AirSoft, rubber bands, arrows or bolts, and slingshots.

EpicWrite’s Approved Boffer Materials

This list contains all building materials EpicWrite has approved for boffer construction.


PVC Piping: Must be at LEAST 3/4” externally and have a 1/8” wall. No other core’s are allowed.


Must give at least 3/4” of padding and fit snugly around core, materials can be layered

Pool Noodle: Standard

Polyethylene Pipe Insulator: Slits must be closed

Foamed Rubber Padding: Slits must be closed


Must completely cover core/padding. Any color allowed, though mandatory safety tags are red and green and must be clearly visible

Duct Tape: Standard

Gorilla Tape


Electric Tape: Can be used over seal to make handle more comfortable

Lead Fishing Weight: Can be used to weight grip to better balance the boffer. Must be SECURED at the base. Weighting anything but the handle is not allowed.

EpicWrite’s Boffer Design Standards


All grips must have a 2 inch foam pommel

One-Handed: 6 Inches.

Hand-and-a-Half: 8 Inches.

Two-Handed: At least 10 inches.


Dagger: 12 inches plus One-Handed grip

Short-Sword: 24 inches plus One-Handed or Hand-and-a-Half grip.

Long Sword: No longer than 36 inches plus Hand-and-a-Half or Two-Handed grip.

Pole Arms: No longer than the wielder is tall. Blade must be at least 22 inches but cannot exceed length of grip. REQUIRES pommel of at least 6 inches.

Double-Blade: Both blades must be the same length and fit Short or Long-Sword standard. Must have Two-Handed grip. Overall length must not exceed height of wielder.


Shields must be padded on every edge with at least 1 inch of foam.


EpicWrite’s Boffer Building Rules

Make sure your weapon/shield is approved:

Before entering combat, have the Safety Knight or Director approve your weapon. Weapons must have approved materials and meet the safety guidelines.

Approved weapons will get GREEN tags.

Non-Approved weapons will get RED tags.

No part of the weapon core should be exposed:

Make sure your boffer is totally sealed in with tape.

Give your weapon tip and pommel padding:

You must have at LEAST and inch of padding extending beyond the core on both the tip and base of the pommel.

Shields must be padded:

All shields must have every edge padded with at least 1 inch of foam.

Your weapon should have no small, protruding parts:

There should be no protruding parts smaller than an eye socket on your weapon. Small protrusions like this can cause serious injury.

Get damaged weapons re-approved after repairing them:

If a weapon is damaged it is immediately de-approved. After you make repairs, explain how it was damaged/repaired and have them re-examine it.

Submit alternate materials and designs for approval:

If you would like to use materials that are not on the Approved Materials list, you must meet with the Director and a Safety Knight at least one month before the event. You will need to bring all materials in question and demo the construction process. The boffer will then be tested in combat for safety. A decision will then be made on weather or not to approve the design or materials.

EpicWrite’s Boffer Fighting Rules

Wear eye protection:

Be sure you are wearing eye protection as there is always risk of face injuries.

Do not hit an opponent's head, neck, or crotch:

These are illegal shots as they guarantee injury.

Never hit someone with a non-padded part of a weapon:

Honestly, would you like to get whacked with a hard PVC pipe?

Pull body blows against opponents:

Do not ever hit full force against an opponent’s body. Pull your blows back so they hit gently. This is a legal liability.

Only use full force hits against boffers:

Full force hits are ONLY allowed against other boffer weapons or shields. This is a legal liability.

Do not throw boffers:

Boffer weapons and shields NEVER be thrown at opponents as you cannot pull back an airborne weapon for a softer impact.

Do not use shield offensively:

Do not bash opponent’s or try and disarm opponents with your shield. ONLY use a shield for blocking.

Do not grab opponent's boffers:

Grabbing opponents weapons or shields is an illegal move.

Only attack with boffers:

Do not engage boffer wielding opponents without a boffer. Using non-boffer weapons, kicking or punching is illegal.

No fighting with weapons/shields that do not have green tags:

Do not boffer with non-approved weapons at EpicWrite Events, EVEN if all parties involved in the fight consent. This is a matter of legal liability.

Shout "Hold" if there is a safety issue:

If you see a safety issue in a battle, even if you are not involved, shout “HOLD” immediately. If you hear someone shout “HOLD” you must stop combat and freeze until they shout “GO”.


The designated Safety Knight reserves the right to alter, suspend, or otherwise disregard these rules at their own discretion at any time without prior notice based on the circumstances.

EpicWrite’s Safety Violation Procedure

In circumstances of intentional infraction of the safety rules OR in cases of carelessness, EpicWrite has a three-strike policy.

First Strike—WARNING:

We will work with you to solve the problem.

Second Strike—SUSPENSION:

Boffer privileges revoked for the remainder of the event and the entirety of the next EpicWrite event you attend.


Boffer privileges revoked indefinitely. Reinstatement is unlikely and will be entirely up to the Safety Knight’s discretion.


The designated Safety Knight reserves the right to alter or disregard the standard escalation procedure at their own discretion based on the circumstances of the violation.

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