The Mud Connector

Author Topic: Role-Playing Resources for Medieval Games (in particular, medieval chivalry)  (Read 3448 times)


  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 74
    • View Profile
I brought this over from its cross post on the Forgotten Kingdoms forums and edited it for relevance.

I feel that the list will be of interest to players, game administrators, and those looking for some good medieval inspiration alike.

Updated 2 June 2014.  Links verified 27 June 2012.

Web sites:
(A well-researched resource for armor from the Middle Ages.)
(A site affiliated with books I personally recommend highly, The Chivalry Bookshelf.  Down on 27 June, 2012! Probably not coming back.)

(A glossary of particular utility that is found on that site. Down on 27 June, 2012! Probably not coming back.)

(Back issues of the out-of-print "Chronique" magazine are sold here.  Many are out of print entirely. Down on 27 June, 2012! Probably not coming back.)
(See particularly the section on "Crusades" and "Crusader Orders".)
(All manner of heraldic terms and blazons explained.)
(Society for Creative Anachronism's heraldry "how-to")
(Particularly this:
(See also this: or
(Excellent modern reproductions [using traditional methods] as a reference.)
(Awesome collection of essays from the Association of Renaissance Martial Arts [this the group that employs Western Martial Arts [WMA] and historical research instead of just play-fighting and dressing up].)
(Ewart Oakeshott was the giant of research into WMA and swords.)
(An example of the results of a search for "Armor" in the "Works of Art" category.  This museum has one of the best public collections of arms and armor on display in the United States.)
(Awesome scholarly journal about WMA.)
(Medieval studies search engine maintained by Georgetown University in Washington, DC, USA.)
(How-to hold a tournament.  Academy of European Medieval Martial Arts.)
(De Re Militari: The Society for Medieval Military History)
(Fleur-de-Lis Designs.  A merchant site with some creative blazon interpretations.)
(An okay site.  Dig around to find something worthwhile; a lot of very shallow history here.)
(A fantastic site displaying and defining medieval architecture terminology.)

Real books that I recommend (this is not an endorsement of any sellers, just a reference):

Book of Knighthood and Chivalry: With the Anonymous Ordene De Chevalerie
by Ramon Lull

Jousts and Tournaments: Charny and the Rules for Chivalric Sport in Fourteenth-Century France
by Geoffroi De Charny (Author), Steven Muhlberger (Author)

The Royal Book of Horsemanship, Jousting & Knightly Combat: Dom Duarte's 1438 Livro da Ensinana de Bem Cavalgar Toda Sela
by Dom Duarte (Author), Steven Muhlberger (Editor), Antonio Frano Preto (Translator)

A Knight's Own Book of Chivalry (The Middle Ages Series)
by Geoffroi de Charny (Author), Richard W. Kaeuper (Introduction), Elspeth Kennedy (Translator)

The Service of Ladies: An Autobiography (First Person Singular)
by Ulrich von Liechtenstein (Author), Kelly DeVries (Introduction), J. W. Thomas (Translator)

A Knight and His Weapons
by Ewart Oakeshott (Author)  or any other title from this series

William Marshal: The Flower of Chivalry
by Georges Duby (Author)

Dragon Magazine   #299 "Fight with Honor!, Knights & Paladins, Jousting Rules"

Empires Trilogy, The Crusade by James Lowder (Forgotten Realms book on how things DID NOT happen EVER in medieval warfare.)

Swords from the West
by Harold Lamb (Author)

The Deed of Paksenarrion
by Elizabeth Moon (author)

by Sir Walter Scott (author)
Recommend a free download from iBooks

Movies that I recommend (a mix of accuracy and inspiration):

The War Lord (1965) - Heston, Boone
Engaging story with a high (relative) degree of historical accuracy.

Excalibur (1981) - Terry, Mirren
A classic.  Terrible adherence to history, but entertaining none-the-less.

Henry V (1989) - Branagh, Jacobi
A classic, but also has value in showing the oft unreported side of being a knight - war.

El Cid (1961) - Heston, Loren
A classic.

A Knight's Tale (2001) - Ledger, Sewell
This movie is entertaining and funny, but obviously not intended as historical gospel.  If anything, it does provide a decent picture of a tournament though.

Kingdom of Heaven (2005) - Bloom, Neeson
This movie's scenery is as beautiful as its historical revision is revolting.  Ridley Scott continues to try to paint all of the Crusades as only acts of European imperialism and aggression, ignoring their more idealistic roots.  Enjoy the movie and then read this article.

Ironclad (2011) - Purefoy, Giamatti, Jacobi
Similar to The War Lord in many ways, this movie shows a Templar leading the defense of a besieged castle. It is interesting to see Purefoy's portrayal of the Templar trying to keep his vows. I believe that this would useful for a player of a paladin as it demonstrates the restraint necessary in many cases, and the consequences of laxity.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2014, 11:59 AM by harroghty »
"Deeds are the real man's true joy" - Albert Kesselring


  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 86
    • View Profile
Very nice list of resources, there, Harry. I remember using more than a couple of them when I was on FK. Definitely worth looking through for anyone involved in fantasy mudding of any sort.


  • Community Manager
  • TMC Veteran
  • *****
  • Posts: 606
    • View Profile
Thanks for the list!  :)

When it comes to books, I'd like to add T.H White's rewrite of the Arthur saga, The Once and Future King, I totally enjoyed that myself.
Molly O'Hara of 4 Dimensions Port 6000


  • New to TMC
  • *
  • Posts: 23
    • View Profile
Those resources are more than sufficient for anyone to play a "chivalric" character on a MU*. You could probably use all of them without getting a clear idea of what chivalry really was, though, which was an imperfect system for controlling, channeling, and justifying violence.

If you just remember that the things knights valued most were their personal honor and their ability to beat the crap out of other men, that their response to slights was often violent, and that the church (in particular) championed knightly codes that encourage the protection of women, clergy, and "the weak" because most knights did the exact opposite, and if you have your character act accordingly, then you'll have a well-rounded "chivalric" character. You also will probably get yourself banned from most games within a month.  ;D
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 5:53 PM by jackal59mo »