It started about 20 years ago with just a few dozen fans of the of the JRR Tolkien book The Hobbit meeting in a forest in the Czech Republic and acting out some of the famous battle scenes from the fantasy novel.
Now, two decades later it draws hundreds of would-be Orcs, Elves, Rangers and Dwarves from across Europe.
The fighters form families and make alliances with each other then march through the dense pine forests an hour from Prague until they meet up with an enemy.
Before a battle, a lot of taunting takes place, then players line up and run or march straight at each other, with pikes, spears and swords in front, followed by the archers.
The ranks converge with a loud crunch.
The weapons are foam or plastic tipped so there aren’t many injuries, but a player will fall occasionally after a particularly hard hit.
Before any battle takes place, weeks of preparation go into making the costumes.
The Battle of the Five Armies takes place over two days, ending on Sunday, with awards going to the groups with the most wins.
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