Anyway...I was figuring on giving the stable masters each a set amount of gold to equip their characters with, and setting down limits so they don't just spend it all on their Champion, then also saying they have to have several different "kits" depending on the type of...combat.
Anyway, advancing this concept, and some other things...
I figure the people who run it announce what type of combat they'll be having. Then the stable masters "bid" a gold amount and a number of fighters. (this number will be modified by who they pick, btw). Whoever bids lowest gold, wins. In case of a tie...whoever bid the lowest total level wins. In case of tie, whoever bid the least number of combatants wins. In case of tie, you have a duel between equal level members of your stables. Winner of duel wins.
There would of course also be prizes if they won. And in some cases multiple stables can win, as much of it will be gladiators vs. gladiators.
Of course, losses will be inevitable. So I was thinking they could buy replacements for like, 1500 GP per level of the replacement. But they can't have more than say, 2 champions, 10 veterans, and 50 rookies, at most. That would be far in the future of the campaign, however.
And, of course, there would be dozens of NPC stables, most of which would fail quickly. I'm also thinking there will be assassination, intrigue, betrayal, mutiny, and all sorts of good stuff. I think the stable masters will have to pay decent upkeep fees to keep their warriors happy.
Any thoughts, suggestions, criticisms? I don't know if this will work out on a practical level, but it seems interesting, and I at least have never seen it done quite like this, so I'm interested in trying it.