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Showing posts from October, 2013

Tabletop and larp - where does one end and the other begin?

Up until recently, it was real simple to separate the two into their own categories - at least in Croatia. Tabletop was played around a table, people were talked through what was going on, and dice were being used to determine a course of action. Larp was when you got into the woods and hit your friends with foam swords.

And while tabletop has always been a rich marketplace - perhaps dominated by D&D (Pathfinder, in the last few years) there were always other options - GURPS, World of Darkness, Fudge etc. being some of the most popular.

Yet larp started monolithical, and everything different was always met by an angry mob of misunderstanding and screams: "That sucks, that's not a real larp!". I could provide a comprehensive list of all instances where this happened, but it would take approximately half of the article. The only constant is that people regularly disagree what larp is.

Let's see a couple of definitions of larp.

"Larp is originally an acronym f…

Camarilla Agram Intro: Embrace the Night, chapter 2

The last night's Vampire event had been the focus of my organizational efforts for the last week. The main organizer of the last night's event was Ivan Erpačić, and while the event's plot was his, I did a few details on the characters, and worked a bit on the downtime actions and plot between the events as well as plenty organizational questions which arose - actions which took a lot of my time this week. Also, some family matters popped up - which nearly let me unable to go to the event, but in the end I managed to attend, arriving hour and a half late.

The location was great, mood set high due to set dressing which included a lot of candles and blood-like drinks. About 20 players attended the larp, both old players and new faces. I arrived in the middle of the social event - introducing my new character, and talking to a lot of people both in-character and as a storyteller. Some interesting interactions played out throughout the course of the evening.

Later it was time f…

Terra Nova: Rise of Rashalan - how it was

Rise of Rashalan was a special event in the Terra Nova series. In many ways it was different from all the past events of the series. It was the first one to take place in a public location (the ruined old city of Susedgrad on the western outskirts of Zagreb), it was the shortest one so far (in-game time lasted for three hours), it was focused on the undead as the main characters, it was mainly a combat larp, and everyone involved played the same characters the entire time - there were no "jumper" NPCs.

A total of twenty players and two non-playing staffmembers (my wife who was a photographer for the event, and our make-up artist who was busy doing undead makeup) took part in the larp. There was a high visual focus of the event, and besides the make-up a lot of players made their own costumes and props to look way better and more convincing as the undead than before. The aim of playing the undead convincingly was high, and there were many details that made it happen.

One of …

Rikon 2013 review

Return to Rikon after last year was nice - this year everything seemed more busy and alive, with visibly more people attending than last year. Rikon grew visibly in both visitor number and content.

It also ended up being probably the most larpy convention I've been on (apart from PoRtaL, but that one was different because it was a specialized larp convention). There was truly loads of larp content (which I mentioned in the announcement). All of it means that Rikon was - for me at least - quite a busy convention, so I didn't see much beyond the larp content.

In a way, that gives me pause. Looking at the programming schedule, there was an almost full track of larp programming throughout the event, which was truly remarkable. First presentation was an introduction to larp and what larp can be by Siro (M. Wranka) - but I missed it since I was still on the road at that time.

I arrived just in time to run Dru. Dru is a Norwegian freeform scenario by Anders Nygaard - described in th…

Technology and running larps

One of the most challenging things about running larps is keeping all the information you have in a way that is quickly accessible, reliable and easily manageable. Technology makes that much much easier. In this post, I'll mostly talk about the solutions that I use myself.

Most of my needs are met by Google Drive. Here's a screenshot from my phone, showing part of my folder structure:

Since I carry my phone with me, in a few moments I can bring up anyone's character sheet, attendance records, background story, check their waiver status etc. no matter where I am. Most of the important stuff is editable, and since Google Drive allows for collaboration, the document might be edited by someone else too - and I'll automatically see the changes. Here's an example of one of the documents - the beginning of my character sheet from this autumn's Demgard (which got an in-character epilogue in the meanwhile), editable by both me and GM.

The character sheets I do - for Ter…

Preparations for Rikon, Rise of Rashalan, Izgon 2 etc.

I've been rather silent lately. I haven't forgotten you :) I was just busy preparing the big one. Yes, that's the upcoming Izgon 2 for which a lot of material has already been produced, and there's still a month of frentic preparation to be done, and it's a lot of work. One part of the project is expanding the background story, which I've been doing with a pen&paper group for the past 3 weeks. Besides that, I've been busy writing rules, characters etc.

The first Izgon larp had been prepared in less than a month, but that one had only 16 players signing up initially. Izgon 2 has already more sign-ups than any other Croatian larp of this year, so it's a huge project - and likely with a very different feel than the first one.

But there's things to do before Izgon. This weekend is Ognjeni Mač's Jaska 12 - an autumn event organized in a similar vein to Jaska 9 two years ago, it's gonna be a first Jaska I'll miss. Because I'll be on Ri…