It’s not every day you see sword fighting in downtown Victoria.

But medieval fighting demonstrations by the Society for Creative Anachronism are part of Capital City Comic Con.

“It takes a bit of work to pick up,” explains Dawn Charcott of the Society for Creative Anachronism. “It takes about a year to get proficient.”

More than just jousting around, the re-enactors also have well-developed alter egos.

Charcott is dressed up as Morgaine Essex.

“Morgaine was born in the year 1067, right after the Battle of Hastings, so I’m a war baby!” she laughs.

The costumes are also the real deal — gauntlets, warrior helmets and heavy chain mail armour.

“It’s actually a great way to stay in shape because you gotta be in top shape or you won’t last,” explains Andrew Axhorn of the Blue Dragon Armoured Combat League.  “You’ll be like, ’60 seconds. that’s all I’m good for!'”

I decided to give it a try — putting on gauntlets, a helmet and grabbing a sword.

The clunky helmet made it hard to see as I walked onto the battlefield.

I wasn’t sure what to expect, but with a little help from the crowd shouting encouragement, I was victorious over two enemy knights.

The jousters were just some of the colourful characters taking over the downtown core.

“I’m Belle from Beauty and the Beast and she’s always been my favourite princess,” says Danika Lorimer. “It’s great seeing everybody coming out in their element and being the person that they want to be.”

Tess van Straaten