8 min read

“Through all of Eternia’s long history, there has been a Man-At-Arms to uphold the cause of goodness.”
– Skytree, the oldest living being in Eternia


Man-At-Arms appeared in the 1983/1984 Filmation animated series He-man and the Masters of the Universe.

A genius inventor, Man-At-Arms is responsible for all the weapons, vehicles, and equipment used by the Royal Palace.

For more context, we suggest that you first read our primer to the Masters of the Universe setting.



  • Real Name: Duncan.
  • Known Relatives: Teela (Adopted Daughter).
  • Group Affiliation: Heroic Warriors, The Royal Palace.
  • Base of Operations: The Royal Palace.
  • Height: 6’0″ (1.82m). Weight: 205 lbs. (93 Kg.).
  • Eyes: Black. Hair: Reddish Brown.

Powers & Abilities

Man-At-Arms, despite his name, is foremost an inventor.

He is King’s Advisor, Weapons Master, Warrior, and Teacher. He’s the Royal Palace’s lead surgeon and scientist. As well as He-man’s most trusted ally and friend.

Man-At-Arms is well versed in all weapons and vehicles. He brought his adopted daughter Teela up to be Captain of the Guard.

Queen Marlena called Man-at-Arms the most skilled man in Eternia at deciphering ancient writings.

Man-At-Arms is often put in charge of expeditions or investigations.

Man-at-Arms (Masters of the Universe 1980s cartoon) side view


As a young man, Man-At-Arms was mentored by Rohad. He was taught the sciences and engineering. The two men collaborated on many sophisticated devices.

One day near the Crystal Sea, Man-At-Arms heard the cry of a falcon. Mer-man and his subjects had come to capture Zoar the falcon. They intended to sacrifice the bird to an evil sea demon.


It would have been easy for the falcon to fly away but there was something in the nest she was protecting. Something she’d give her very life to defend.

The young warrior, Man-At-Arms, used a gadget to defeat Mer-Man and his minions.

He then found a baby girl in the falcon’s nest. This was the Sorceress’ daughter, Teela. The Sorceress had taken her to the wilderness to raise her in peace.

However, after the attack she realized that her daughter needed a real home. Man-At-Arms promised to care for her all of his days.

The Royal twins

The evil Horde, an intergalactic force, invaded Eternia. Their attack was turned aside by the heroic warriors and the Palace guard. But not before their leader Hordak kidnapped the infant Princess Adora.

Even Man-At-Arms and the Sorceress couldn’t stop the fleeing villain.

Man-At-Arms raised Teela as his own daughter. He taught her about weapons and electronics. She was sent to fine schools.

Man-At-Arms found employment with the King and Queen. As time passed, he became one of their most trusted advisors. He became a friend and ally to Prince Adam and is one of the few people who know his secret.

Man-At-Arms has free reign to work on his inventions in whatever measure he decides.

Man-at-Arms (Masters of the Universe 1980s cartoon)


Man-At-Arms has a body builder’s frame.

He’s clean shaven except for his well-kept moustache.

His armor is heavy partial body armor including a helmet. On his legs he wears shin-guards. All his armor is yellow in color, while his body-glove is green. He wears barbarian-style brown shorts.


He is a man of purpose and driven. Man-At-Arms will work a problem until he solves it. A hard worker, his inventions go through many tests before he calls them reliable.

Teela says Man-At-Arms never goes anywhere without his keys.

Man-at-Arms has earned the respect the Royal family. He will fight to defend them. King Randor relies on Man-At-Arms to summon He-Man in the case of an emergency.

Man-At-Arms fills the role of fatherly figure to Teela and at times, Orko. Man-at-Arms and Teela are very close.

Man-at-Arms share a special bond with Prince Adam. Adam can safely share his secret and ask for advice. Duncan and He-man fight side by side against Skeletor’s forces.

Man-at-Arms, like the Sorceress, acts as a moral compass for He-man. Guiding his development and reminding Adam that he was given his power to help others, not himself.

As a serious fellow, Man-At-Arms is almost always the butt of jokes. When Orko’s tricks go wrong Man-At-Arms ends up with egg on his face.


“That’s very interesting, but silly.”

Teela: “Feel any better ?”
Man-At-Arms: “A little. Achoo !”
Prince Adam: “Nice to know you have a weakness.”
Man-At-Arms: “Allergies are not a weakness. Achoo ! They’re just allergies.”

(Making a distress call to the Royal Palace)
Man-At-Arms: “Adam, is that you ?”
Prince Adam: “Man-At-Arms ! Where are you ?”
Man-At-Arms: “At Snake Mountain, Skeletor’s got me in his dungeon. I managed to rig a communicator but I can’t talk long. I knew you’d be standing by, I need your help !”
Prince Adam: “See you soon.”

Orko: “Ok now, is everybody ready ?”
Man-At-Arms: “Orko, I don’t think I’ve ever been ready for one of your tricks.”

“Orko !”

“Fighting is often not the way to settle a problem. It may prove who is stronger but it doesn’t prove who is right.”

(Skeletor attacks the castle with fireworks setting much of the kingdom on fire).
King Randor: “Duncan, bring out your new fire shuttle !”
Man-At-Arms: “I’ll have to make a few adjustments but I’m on my way.”

(Testing out a new invention)
“If this works it could mean an endless food supply.”

(Orko’s sorcery was neutralized)
“I wish I could help you Orko but I don’t know what to do. If this were a scientific or medical problem that would be something else again but magic, that’s a little out of my league Orko.”

“That’s the difference between good and evil. Those who are evil will do whatever they have to, to win. But as long as there are good people who are willing to do what their conscience tells them. Evil will never win.”

Man-at-Arms (Masters of the Universe 1980s cartoon) in a lab

DC Universe Adaptation

(This section proposes ways of using this character in DC Universe stories).
I always see him as a background figure. Yeah, he’s the most skilled in Eternia but he’s always the fatherly advisor.

On Earth in the DCU, I see him working for a government somewhere. Putting his genius to work. Combating alien invasions, dimensional warlords, and evil supers. He would be a heroic counter to the mad-scientist archetype.

DC Heroes RPG


A 1121 points Character (Without equipment).

Dex: 05 Str: 04 Bod: 04
Int: 06 Wil: 06 Min: 06
Inf: 06 Aur: 03 Spi: 04
Init: 018 HP: 060


Telepathy: 05

Bonuses and Limitations:

Telepathy is only useable with the Sorceress of Grayskull. It is only one way, like making a call. Once the Sorceress answers mentally, she then may allow a connection with others giving Man-At-Arms further mental communication (-2).


Acrobatics (Climbing)*: 05, Gadgetry: 13, Martial Artist (AV, Techniques)*: 05, Medicine: 05, Occultist (Create Artifact, Identify Artifact): 03, Occultist (Occult Knowledge): 10, Scientist (Analysis, Observation): 03, Scientist (Research): 06, Scientist (Drawing Plans): 12, Vehicles*: 05, Weaponry (full, including exotic – his own creations, lasso, boomerang): 06


Area Knowledge (Lands around the Royal Palace, 30 HPs), Expertise (Eternian Myths and Legends), Familiarity (Chess, Fishing, Skiing), Genius, Iron Nerves, Scholar (Ancient Eternian writings).


Queen Elmora of the moon of Phantos (Low), The Sorceress of Grayskull (High), Teela (High), He-Man (High), Scientific Community (Low).


Minor Irrational Attraction to technology, Minor Physical Restriction (Allergies).


Upholding the Good.






Man-At-Arms has access to all vehicles, weapons, and equipment in the Royal Palace. His everyday equipment:

  • ARMOR [/BODY/ 05, Cost: 22].
  • WRIST BLASTER (X2) [BODY 13, Attraction/Repulsion: 12, Energy Blast 12, Ice Production: 06, Radio Communication: 10 (one Wrist only), Bonuses and Limitations: Attraction/Repulsion is Repulsion only (-1 FC), Ice Production can only be used to trap a target in ice (- 4 FC), R#7, Cost: 108, 129 w/Radio Comm].
  • 12 AP Omni-gadget (ABCD) R#5, Cost: 50]. This would usually represents Duncan’s newest invention.
Man-at-Arms (Masters of the Universe 1980s cartoon) shooting a pistol


The following items are easy to get in a short amount of time. It wouldn’t be odd for Man-At-Arms to have these items on his person especially if he were adventuring:

  • Heavy Mace [BODY 09, Enhance (EV): 02 (cap is 08), Descriptor: Bludgeon, Cost: 31].
  • Sword [BODY 09, Enhance (EV): 02 (cap is 06), Descriptor: Slashing, piercing, Cost: 31].
  • Collapsible Stun Baton [BODY 05, Energy Blast: 05, Enhance (EV): 01 (cap is 05), Descriptor: Bludgeon, Bonuses and Limitations: Energy Blast has no range, no AV, and is Non-lethal. R#2, Cost: 16] .
  • Porta-Prison [BODY 13, Miniaturization: 08, Cost: 87]. The prison is completely collapsible to a hand-held rod or disk. It proved strong enough to hold Beast-Man.
  • Bola [BODY 04, Snare: 06, Bonuses and Limitations: Snare cannot be higher than the relevant Weaponry skill of the user (-1), R#2, Cost: 19].
Man-at-Arms (Masters of the Universe 1980s cartoon) using his porta-prison



The following items take more preparation. They are bulky or uncommon. For example, they may be kept in his armory until needed.

  • Stun-Rifle [BODY 05, Energy Blast: 09, Bonuses and Limitations: Energy Blast is Non-lethal, R#2, Cost: 24].
  • Boomerang Handcuffs [BODY 05, Gliding: 02, Cost: 12]. These take skill!
  • Rope ladder with Grapple [BODY 05, Cost: 09, Length 04 APs].
  • Grenade [BODY 01, Bomb 12, Bonuses and Limitations: Area effect is only 01 AP. Grenade Drawback. R#2, Cost: 25].

Design notes

Man-At-Arms never used Telepathy himself to talk to the Sorceress until the episode Eternal Darkness.

Writeups.org writer avatar Ethan Roe

By Ethan Roe.

Source of Character:The 1983/1984 animated series He-man and the Masters of the Universe, voiced by Alan Oppenheimer.

Helper(s): IMDB, he-man.fandom.com  .

Writeup completed on the 18th of February, 2019.