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Interview with Alpay Görgülü, larp Turkey

Larp is played everywhere - and a new group is starting up the scene in Turkey. Started by Alpay Görgülü, who's bringing in larp from Italy where he used to play, it already sparked a great interest.

Alpay was interviewed by Pavle "Bliss" Pelikan, and this interview was first published 12 days ago in Croatian on Larp Hrvatska blog. Thanks to Petra - owner of that blog - I now have the chance to republish the interview in its original English. Read on.

1. How long do you play larp in Turkey? 

LARP Turkiye is a new group born in april when I decided to import here in Turkey the LARP passion i have since I was a child (I am born and grew up in Italy where i played and organized for more or less 20 years). In the last 11 years I am living in Turkey and I always wanted to play also here cause there is an anormous potential but until this year I had no courage to start. For the moment we are still in the organization phase and there is not yet any event. With the help of my assistant Melis Taze, we are now teaching to the players what a Larp is, how costumes have to be done, which kind of weapons we must use and how to make them if we can't spend too much money from the expert sites. For the moment, in our group there are more or less 200 persons but I think the first event will be played by 20-25 persons the first time.

At the end of december we are planning to play the first tavern event but before this I am personally organizing a workshop to show the weapons and how to build them.

2. How did larp in Turkey develop over the years ?

The project is new cause here in Turkey they just know the name "LARP" but no one actually really played to a LARP. They just organized sometimes in university little shot LARP events but using no costume and basing it complitely on D&D classical FRP (sitting on a table, just speaking) and we know it is not a LARP.
This is why I am creating everything from zero: a storyboard, a scenario, NPC's, territorial maps and so on...

3. How many larpers do you have in Turkey? 

There are for the moment 200 people (18-35 years old mostly university students but also some minor who will participate only if they have a written parental permission) but this number is going to grow up exponentially when we'll finally start our first adventures. Most of them are from Istanbul, the city where I started, but there are people also in other cities where I am planning to open later some office. LARP Turkiye is actually the name I gave cause is my plan to involve all the Country. Most of those players are actually cosplayers by their own and I had the opportunity to know some of them and create my project. The percentage is more or less 60% girls and 40% boys.

4. Do you have many groups/clans, what can you tell me about the ingame story?

About the storyboard: I have connections with an italian group (Guerre del Caos) and i decided to create a world connected to them in somehow cause I am planning later to organize international events with them. This is why created a land on the boarders of the italian's group land. For the moment, in the game, no one knows that beyond the mountains there is another land

In our land there was a big empire divided in 7 little manors to manage it better (actually it is similar to historical realities) and when the army of Chaos started to enter from the north, our emperor organized a big army to go and fight for defending the lands. The emperor himself unluckly vanished during the war and the manors started internal wars to protect themselves from the Chaos and to try manage the all empire. The emperor's daughter decided to start a research for her father but a traitor, her councilor, made her vanish and gained all the necessary power to rule all the existing lands. No one actually knows he is responsible for this because it will be the first occasion to create the first game.

There are not yet groups or clans, they will born during the game, but actually it is my intention to create guilds based on the characters professions.

As I told you, in the storyboard, there are 7 manors that means we'll use 7 different locations for our adventures.

Our events will be of 3 kind:

  1. weekly we'll play in a public place (a bar or a pub) where characters will reunite in a tavern and discuss about the situations and decide what to do
  2. monthly we'll play one time in open places (like forests, lakes, mountains) and whatever will be decided in the tavern will be transformed in action (the real LARP)
  3. once or twice a year we'll organize pluriday adventures

When it will be possible, we'll organize international events together with the italian group and, I hope, with the balcanian groups. Participating to Drachenfest (Germany) or to English campaigns is also one of my plans.

5. Do you use the same set of rules all over Turkey or does each group have their own set of rules?

About the rules, considering the this will be the first time for a real LARP in Turkey, i am creating my own rules using the old Lorien Trust rules and the Certamen rules created years ago by an italian friend of mine Dario Cherubino. In this moment I am translating and re-creating the rules trying to do them in the most simple way for better understanding.

6. During the year, how many larp events do you have? Are they all fantasy-medieval or do you have other settings also?

Considering that this will be the first LARP we'll play in Turkey, I decided to start from a classical middle-age/fantasy but LARP Turkiye is a general name for the assosiation I am creating cause is my intention to create any kind of LARP, not only fantasy but also cyberpunk, post-apocalypse and so on... LARP Turkiye means any kind of LARP in Turkey

7. How do you attract new larpers?

For attracting players, first of all I participated to a "zombie walk Istanbul" manifestation in april where I had the idea to create the group. Then I organized a "middleage and middle earth day" in Istanbul in may and I created a duel with a friend of me (I am an historical fights teacher since 15 years) and of course so many people started to get interest in how to use a sword and how to fight... then i purposed the LARP (of course explaining that LARP weapons are not real  ) and in one day I had 80 people in my group. In the future I am planning to cooperate with universities, high schools and also with other organizations (theatres, gyms, etc...) to make LARP Turkiye grow up even more.

Unluckly, at the end of May, I lost my mother and this is why my LARP work started to go a little slower otherwise next week it was my plan to create a stand for LARP during the first night of "The Hobbit" in the cinema


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