This Image maybe subject to copyright






     Black Market




     Middle East


     Silk Road

GM Tools

     House Rules






     Desert Nomads











     Alim Fouad







     Taron the Dark

Martial Arts





Battlelords of the 23rd Century Scenario


This is our take on writing this martial art up for Rifts RPG, using Palladium's Ninjas and Superspies and Mystic China books. 


This is an ancient martial art thought to be invented by Herakles and Theseus, and it was nearly extinct by the start of the 21C, with only a few practitioners around the world, and even then you can say it had been altered from its original form. This is the martial art used by the ancient Greeks and then the Romans. It is pronounced pan/cray/shun or pan-crat-ee-on depending on the dialect and is thought to mean "all encompassing" or "all powers". This martial art tries to use all the fighters' resources, physical and mental, mind and spirit using hand and feet strikes. In this combat form, more or less anything goes. This was the blue ribbon event of the Ancient Olympics. Herakles returned to Earth at great personal expense to enter the inaugural Pankration tournament of the ancient Olympic games and he was the first laurel winner of Pankration in the ancient Olympic games. Though this form is a free for all, it did have some rules, like there was no biting or eye gauging. Even these rules were ignored in competition or fights to the death. The Spartans refused to enter Pankration entrants in the ancient Olympics, seeing it as flawed and too weak for their tastes due to the official rules of no biting or eye gauging. The Spartans allowed such tactics in their own festivals.

This Martial art has returned to Earth via the Wolfen. In Wolfen society this is the founding martial art for all their other forms, and it remains the most popular combat form in their societies. The Wolfen form allows the biting and eye gauging moves, as well as the use of the deadly caestus. The Wolfen have found that this form is excellent for toe to toe fighting but it lacks on the battlefield. Pammachon is the Battlefield version of Pankration. In fact it is thought that the no holds nature of Pankration is due to the fact that it is imitating battlefield situation, where anything goes.

Entrance Requirements: No attribute or alignment restrictions, BUT CAN'T TAKE boxing, wrestling or Demon wrestling demon hunter body exercise.

Skill Cost: 5 years

Costume: Any

Stance: The opponents start the fight in the classic boxer or wrestler stance. Either way the opponents always keep their arms and legs moving, going from defence posture to attack posture, opponents circle each other and change direction when the other does, therefore both either move clockwise or anticlockwise, keeping an equal distance between them while they size each other up. With each circling the opponents move closer together, until eventually one of them makes the first move.

Character Bonuses:

Add +10 to Chi

Add 1D6 to P.E

Add 2D6 to P.S

Add 1D6 to P.P

Add 1D6 to Spd

Add 1D4 to M.A

Add 1D4 to M.E

Add 1D4 to P.B

Add 1D6 X10 S.D.C

Add 3D4 Hit Points

Add 1D4 to Initiative


Combat Skills:

Attacks Per Melee: 4

Escape Moves: Roll with Punch/Fall/Impact, Maintain Balance, Handstand, Back Flip, Somersault

Attack Moves: Leap

Basic Defensive Moves: Dodge, Parry, Automatic Parry

Advanced Defences: Automatic Dodge, Combination Parry/Dodge, Breakfall, Disarm, Power Block/Parry, Automatic Roll,

Hand Attacks: Punch, Backhand, Palm Strikes, Claw Hand, Fore-Knuckle Fist, Double-Knuckle Fist, Uppercut, Roundhouse Strikes, Hammerfists,

Basic Foot Attacks: Kick Attack, Tripping Leg/Hooks, Snap Kick, Drop Kick, Reverse Turning Kick, Backward Sweep, Sweep,

Special Attacks: Bite, Eye Gauge, Body Block/Tackle, Crush/Squeeze, Pin/Incapacitate, Choke, One hand Choke, Paralysis Attack (Vital Points), Elbow, Forearm, Shin Kick, Combination Grab/kick or Grab/Knee, Body Flip/Throw, Critical Body Flip/Throw, Auto Body Flip/Throw, Knee Snap, Head butt, Gore, Shoulder Ram. CHANCERY (one hand grabs opponent by hair, pulling their head downwards, while the other hand delivers an uppercut to the THROAT or face. If grab part is successful, then the uppercut can be used at +2 strike and does double damage of normal uppercut to the head, and opponent must roll against being knocked out/stun). Grab/Trip (a lightening grab is made for the opponents ankle/foot, and then the leg is quickly twisted upwards, causing opponent to fall backwards to the floor. Opponent loses attack and initiative, -2 to combat moves for rest of melee, leaving him vulnerable to ground based attacks) NB: a fellow Pankratist would use handstand to escape from this attack. KLIMAKISMOS or the "ladder trick" (this move can be used standing or on the floor. The pankratists finds a way to get onto the opponent's back, and scissors his abdomen with his thighs, as his legs encircle opponent. While at the same time he is choking opponent, usually the forearm choke wrapped around opponent's throat, which is locked in place by other hand for extra insurance). GRAB/THROW (grab opponent and throw them to the floor as hard as possible or as far as possible (a classic stomach throw is the norm). any throw like this makes opponent lose an attack, initiative and makes them -2 to combat moves. POWER ATTACKS (Every attack in Prakration can be done as a power attack, example power punch, power kick, power choke, normally double damage and takes two attacks to do)

Holds/Locks: Automatic Hold, Arm Hold, Leg Hold, Body Hold, Neck Hold, Automatic Lock, Finger Lock, Wrist Lock, Elbow Lock

Weapon Katas: None

Special Katas: "War Dance" Pyrrhic. This Pyrrhic allows this empty hand art to become a formidable battlefield art. When this is being, the practitioner of this has Weapon Katas in and W.P Paired Weapons in Spear, sword, shield,  and/or Weapon Katas and W.P Paired Weapons in any two of the following weapons: trident, net, lasso, sword, spear, axe, hammer, knife, shield. He can use his weapons in any paired combination as well. He is able to utilise his moves in a battle situations, and gets multiple dodge, circular parry moves, but loses autodoge, -3 Attacks and -3 to all combat moves. Is unable to use the grappling moves. NB: Pankration is a totally empty hand martial art, a practitioner is unable to use any type of weapon with it, other caestus, knuckledusters, which increase damge done, but to not require a W.P skill. Therefore to use a weapon you either use this Kata, or fight without HTH or also have at minimum 

HTH: Basic, so you are able to use weapons.

Modifiers to Attacks: Pull Punch, Knock Out/Stun, Critical Strike, Critical Strike From Rear


Skills Included In Training

Martial Art Powers: You may select two from among Body Hardening Techniques and/or Demon Hunter Body Hunter Body Hardening Techniques. NOTE: SKIAMACHI power is received automatically. This was a sort of shadow boxing training, but when a pankratist performs this using pneuma (Greek for inner energy), it creates a a shadow (animus) of him. Once activated it seems as his shadow is fighting for him. This means where there was one fighter now you are faced with two. In the world of Rifts you know have a mystic creature that can hurt supernatural and MDC structures. This animus has as much SDC/HP as pankratist and can do the same stuff as well.  In Rifts setting this shadow provides MDC Protection. Costs 10Chi points and lasts for minute per level.

Languages: Wolfen (for our Rifts setting)

Training Skills: Gymnastics, Running, Climbing, and Swimming. (bonuses not added in these stats)

Philosophical Training: Wolfen (for our Rifts setting)


Level Advancement Bonuses

1st: +2 to Roll with Punch/Fall/Impact, +2 to all combat moves, Critical Strike on Natural 20, Critical Strike from Behind, Death Blow on Natural 20, Knock Out/Stun on Natural 20. Pin/Incapacitate 18-20

2nd: +2 Damage, +1 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB, Initiative, +5 SDC, +1D4 Hit points, +5Chi

3rd: +1 attack per melee, Select One (1) additional Martial Art Power from Martial Art Techniques or Demon Hunter/Body Hardening. Pin/Incapacitate 17-20

4th: +2 to Roll with Punch/Fall/Impact, +2 to all combat moves, Critical Strike on 18-20, Death Blow on 18-20, Knock Out/Stun on 18-20, Ambidextrous training finished, +1 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB, Initiative, +5 SDC, +1D4 Hit points, +5Chi

5th: +1 attack per melee, Select One (1) additional Martial Art Power from Martial Art Techniques or Demon Hunter/Body Hardening. Pin/Incapacitate 16-20,

6th: +2 Damage, +1 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB, Initiative, +5 SDC, +1D4 Hit points, +5Chi,

7th: +1 attack per melee, Select One (1) additional Martial Art Power from ANY category

8th: +1 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB, Initiative, +5 SDC, +1D4 Hit points, +5Chi,

9th: +1 attack per melee, +2 Damage, +1 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB, Initiative, +5 SDC, +1D4 Hit points, +5Chi, Pin/Incapacitate 15-20

10th: +2 to Roll with Punch/Fall/Impact, +2 to all combat moves, Critical Strike on 17-20, Death Blow on 17-20, Knock Out/Stun on 17-20, Double Chi, Double SDC and Hit points

11th: +1 attack per melee, Select One (1) additional Martial Art Power from ANY category

12th: Add +5 Chi, Add 1D4 to M.E and M.A

13th: +2 Damage, +2 P.S, P.E, P.P, PB Initiative, +10SDC, +1D6 Hit points, Pin/Incapacitate 14-20

14th: Add +5 Chi, Add 1D4 to M.E and M.A

15th: Select One (1) additional Martial Art Power from ANY category


Why Study Pankration?

This martial art may not be for you if you looking for a flashy martial art, or if you looking for a weapon based martial art. his martial art isn't for you if you looking to handle multiple opponents. This martial art is for you if you are looking for a simple but very effective martial art. This is probably the best empty hand martial art, especially for going toe-to-toe with an opponent, where anything goes, for this combat form allows you to throw the kitchen sink and the bath tub at your opponent, so that you are the last man standing. This is the quintessential gladiator martial art.

NB: The Wolfen on Rifts Earth, love using the caestus, a studded and spiked glove when fighting. The Freebeing Nation has developed a caestus glove encased by a high powered energy field.  The energy field surrounding the caestus, can be made to explode on impact, sending a highly concentrated explosion forwards of the impact. In game terms this means the target of a punch made by this takes 4D6 damage tripled, there is a slight drawback to this, because the wearer of this caestus, also takes 10% (TEN PERCENT) of the damage done by this attack. The energy field also gets used up fairly quickly with only ten hits possible this way before energy depleted, or if the users own armour is destroyed.

FBN energy Field Caestus, 4d6 X3 dam on exploding field punch (10 hits before recharge and studded/spiked area of Caestus needs replacing)

 NB: A player character using this martial art, must physically train for minimum of TWO hours a day, and have one day of rest. This must be worked around their adventuring. If they are unable to do this regularly or anywhere near it, then a like a boxer they start losing their conditioning and peak physically fitness. For game purposes, where training is not maintained, the player will lose half of their physical bonuses and be -2 attacks and -2 to all moves, unless they go through a crash course of 2d6 weeks of training, NO ADVENTURING AT ALL during this time. If this not done by next level, then the player will again lose half his bonuses as above, and will need 3d6 weeks of crash course training to get back to half bonuses. Each time it gets harder to get back to peak physical fitness.



This webpage was created by the OneTen rp'ing group. All work that appears on this page is (C) Copyright the OneTen rp'ing group 2011.