In Wasteland Wars, you can use several types of weapons – boffer melee weapons, bows with padded arrows, throwing weapons, and foam dart/ball guns. While this is a physical event, weapons must be safe and fun to use in combat. So here are the safety guidelines for our event, in addition to the size restrictions in the Rules section.

A Word for Newbies

These rules are for players looking to build their own weapons. There are many excellent tutorials online for doing so. If you just want to buy, some online retailers sell boffer weapons that match our rules, and there will also be vendors at our event who will sell legal weapons.

Most LARP weapons on Amazon are actually for cosplay, are not sufficiently padded, and not safe for our use. If you are buying online, buy from a dedicated LARP dealer. Most weapons marked as safe for a major battle or boffer LARP game are allowed at our game, so long as they aren’t latex.

The Iron Law of Pain and Injury

No one is here to get actually hurt or experience serious pain. No matter how well the guidelines are followed, if a judge finds your weapon is not safe, causes serious pain or at risk of causing injury, you may not use it. All weapons must be submitted at check-in for review, and can be checked at will by any judge at any time.

Melee Weapons

Type Weapon Length
Dagger Maximum 18″
Short 18″ to 36″
Long 36″ to 48″
Powerful over 48″

All melee weapons consist of a core (the center pole of the weapon), a pommel (the padded end of the weapon not meant for striking), a handhold (the unpadded section where it is meant to be held),  the blade or striking surface (the padded section meant as a striking surface), and the skin (the covering for the padding for cosmetic and durability purposes) Polearms and spears might also include a shaft which is not used as a handle normally.

Different weapons can be made in different ways, but these guidelines should give you the flexibility you need to make many different types of weapons.

Participants cannot wield chain weapons (flails, etc.) or weapons of exotic construction (shield-spears) though some will be available in the gladiatorial arena that were made and approved by the staff.

Judges will turn down weapons that they believe qualify as a sword-spear, punching dagger/shield or are otherwise meant to violate the spirit of the rules by serving an overtly defensive rather than offensive purpose.

The Core

The core is the center shaft of the weapon that forms the base that padding is attached to. You may use carbon rods, graphite rods, PVC tubes, kite spar, bamboo (wrapped in tape) or fiberglass as a core. Other materials must be approved by a judge as a core.

Metal or wood may never be used as a core or elsewhere on the weapon.

The Handle

The handle must not exceed 1/3 of the weapon and must not continue past the halfway point toward the striking surface. No padding is required on the handle, though bat grip tape is recommended.

The Pommel

The pommel is any end of a weapon that is not meant for striking. It must be padded. The pommel must be 2″ wide parallel to the handle, and have at least 1″ of padding. Striking with a pommel that is not ‘stab safe’ is not allowed.

The Striking Surface

Any section of the weapon meant to strike the enemy must be strike legal. It should be padded enough to prevent injury when you strike an enemy at full force.

The blade must comply with the Iron Law of Pain and Injury. It must have at least one cross section of foam 2 1/2″ from edge to edge. It must have at 1″ of foam over the core measured from the furthest point of the blade to the surface of the core.

Stab only weapons must have at least 6″ of strike legal surface extending from the tip of the weapon. Remember that 2/3rds of the weapon length must still have courtesy padding.

The Shaft

Any part of the weapon that is not pommel, striking surface or handle must be covered in courtesy padding of at least 1/2″ of foam.

The Skin

Any striking surface must be covered in cloth. Plastidip covers may be allowed if they have as much give as cloth, but must be explicitly approved by a judge. Tape or other covers are not allowed on a striking surface. Shafts, handle and pommels may be covered in plastidip or similar materials. The skin should not have dangerous edges, hard decorations or frayed materials where it runs any chance of catching costumes or striking a player.

Due to allergies, please do not use latex weapons.



All guns should be a retail model foam dart, disc or ball caster (e.g. Nerf guns). We highly recommend the Nerf MEGA or Rival line. Otherwise, hits are extremely hard to register by other players. Players using traditional dart weapons will regularly have missed hits.


Mods that improve the speed and amount of the projectiles coming out of the foam dart caster are strictly prohibited. These include: spring upgrades, removing air restrictors, replacement barrels, flywheel and motor upgrades.

Mods that reduce jamming, improve loading or reduce misfires are allowed, such as feeding mechanism upgrades and magazine spring upgrades.


Homemade darts are not allowed under any circumstances. All darts must be from a reputable manufacturer and professionally constructed. Reputable third party ammunition is allowed if it is not significantly different from official rounds.