The Arts of LARP, Early Impressions
Now that I’m a bit further into The Arts of LARP, and the author has started their deep dive into their first case study, I’m thinking this may be a bit more of an “outsider” point of view work than something to help insiders hone and innovate. That may change but even so, I’ve already picked out a few things of interest to me so far…
Their first case study, a one-shot called Under Angmar’s Shadow set in Middle Earth sounds like a lot of fun. A large (by my own theater one-shot standards) game at 40-50 pre-generated roles, and only a few minor NPCs, it seems to have a spread of interpersonal situations, politics with a capital P, strategic rounds for elements of the wider world and free form.
One thing that wasn’t common in games we ran, are the intermissions between “time skips”, but I see why they the creator felt they were necessary for the type of advancement in their story. The after-care is more formalized than then “break out drinks or fire up the grill” sessions we did after some of our games, but this is a more modern and polished crew.
Not sure this particular LARP would be a good beginner LARP for gamerunners because of the minimum size and number of moving parts though.
The gamerunners use a system of categorizing pre-gens in certain areas, so they can ask players similar questions, and rank set of best-matching players who would probably enjoy as well as best portray that pre-gen. While I think we all do this to a degree when our LARP community casts NPCs, I’d love to get a peek under the hood of that system, and hope they expand on it later in the book.
Will check back in after a few more chapters!