A lot of people complain that the rules have become too safe, and that the sport is worse for it. I ask them, were they there in 1325? When Dalace fell from her horse and died there, on the dirty field, despite the best efforts of both her opponent and the medics? I'll say they weren't. Maybe the game was more exciting then, when the risks were higher, but I'd argue a fun game isn't worth the chance of death.
Jousting is a highly popular sport all across Asavla, and has remained so since the ancient days. It is rarely played by amateurs due to the potential risks, but has a variety of high level competitions associated with it, particularly the International Joust, held in a different country each year.
The joust arose in the east after the rise of the use of cavalry in battle, particularly in the northern regions. These tactics would later come into play during duels, as a number of duel participants would have cavalry experience and demand a fight on that field.
It later became part of a cultural festival to Ylais in some regions, where knights would come from across a town or country and duel for Ylais' honour. After a few of these festivals were 'hijacked' by Kysroan knights, they stopped being held.
The joust would be revived separately further south, mostly in Divinitia. After the Divinitians fled across the sea, they took their love of jousting with them, and it was an incredibly popular sport in Divinice. After Divinice began to reconnect with the east, the sport was re-imported to the region.
It started being played as a part of international competitions in the early 1200s, though these were largely informal and for fun. It became more of a competitive sport in the late 1200s, and many rules were added to ensure safety. These rules were then made even more detailed and extensive after the death of Dalace at the 1325 International Joust, and the 1326 IJ was cancelled to allow for extensive reform. Rules in different leagues often vary wildly, between levels and countries, but many follow the International Joust rules with minor alterations.
Each knight will mount their horses at opposite ends of a field, on either side of a dividing fence. When the referee begins the round, the two knights will begin to ride towards each other. The aim varies from precisely hitting a shield held in the left hand, to dismounting their opponent entirely.
Rules for jousts can vary wildly between different leagues and regions, however a few basic details are the same between them;
- Participants must be over a certain age (Typically 18)
- Participants must be checked by a doctor on the day of competition to ensure they are fit to compete
- No magic of any kind is allowed
- Lances must be blunt
- All participants must wear chest armour and a helmet, with additional armour being optional
- No modifications are to be made to lances without board approval
- Lances are not to deliberately strike the opponent's head or the opponent's horse
Additional rules per league may include those regarding drugs, horse fitness standards, or the sorts of armour that are permitted.