LARP War Journal: First Event of 2017 – “A Step Into Shadow”

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This year for my LARP they were taking the first big step in something that would make not only every event worthwhile, but finally start appealing to the story aspect of LARPing that they have always been lacking. Most LARPs with RP elements tend to have stories, and if it is balanced with fighting then you would also have your fighting. When you have a whole year where most of the events appeased those who primarily love to fight, you have a problem right there. It seems that someone was finally ready to address this issue and in the three years I’ve LARPed this was something I could genuinely look forward to where it didn’t seem like I needed to drag my feet around something country driven.

What they initiated here with this “A Step Into Shadow” storyline is a year long campaign story that would span every event in 2017.

The intro goes; “The world is in balance . To light a candle is to cast a shadow.” The coming of Necromancy has raised a dark tide in the Realm of Darkon. Forces work in the shadows towards an indiscernible end. If you can find pause from your destructive wars for only a moment, there may yet be hope.

This started with a special land event. All countries could perform a Temple Action at no cost and if successful would gain 2 points in the Temple attribute. This was a special and challenging encounter. Up to the start of the event I do have to say that I wasn’t quite clear on just what my role would be. There were certain key characters and the rest of us just had to find some way to influence things. With the costume I put together for myself it seemed I was best fit to aid the Shadow Court. It worked for me. I wanted to be evil and represent some of the chaos. This seemed like the best role to take at the time. This meant that for the Temple Actions I was with the rest of the Shadow Court as they took on a majority of the countries that decided to go through with it.

The fights were fun. I was freezing my butt off before I even stepped foot onto the field, but I really enjoyed myself when ‘Lay on’ started. First off this was a group I never got to really fight alongside so it was a good change. Then there was just the fun in getting into character to give each of these countries an idea as to what they are going up against. That and started to piece together their approach to what’s coming for the realm. Some went straight for the fight, others took to roleplaying in order to get a more effective result/outcome. I would say that almost everyone enjoyed these encounters with the Shadow Court. Land Actions are fun, but when you add this kind of twist to it there’s more that you can get out of it rather than simply win or lose. There were many ways we could have started to pull players into the story, but this proved to be best considering the only way you aren’t involved is if you choose not to be involved.

When the Temple Actions ended, then came the announcements in which the story legitimately got rolling. The roleplay was perfect between the initial move that began to throw the realm into chaos, to the song that Radby the Bard sang that summed things up quite nicely. After that it didn’t take too much time before the line would be drawn in the sand between Shadow Queen Keira and King Andrick. The little skirmish which broke loose said enough about the force each side wields to make some kind of impact.

As far as first events go for the year, this was a strong start. “A Step Into Shadow” set the tone for many events to come opening us up to so many opportunities to do more than we ever could before between combat and RP. I know for me this will be a big year to see what I can contribute to making each passing event a worthy experience. This is the point where you have to remind players that coming out is worth the drive and fees.

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LARP War Journal: Breaking The Mold

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