The LT won best large Larp and best large Lrp. Huh, we will get back to why that shouldn’t annoy you in a bit, but Larpcon. That is a thing that just happened.
One of the things I love about things like Larpcon is the diversity of stuff you get to look at and how broad our church is. From starship bridge simulators to fest Larp there is a lot of stuff out there.
Certainly the thing that I want to go to that was ‘new this year, but life will conspire to stopping me go to’ is Cry Havok from Mark Gilbert.
Not only was I a huge fan of the old fighting fantasy rpg Maelstrom (look it up it was ting book that got released, but was one of the most influential rpgs of my teens) and an old reneactor; Mark’s ambition of an immersive historical event that encourages and teaches solid combat is something to be applauded. Also helps the guy is really nice too.
I hate him already. Not as much as I hate Ian, but close.
Obviously my car will explode and I won’t get to it, but hey it looks really good and I’d like to go.
Also worth mentioning is the new Nerf based larp futures end. Even though I cant go to it this year due to commitments and stupidly running a game on the same day as the second one, ive been watching the kit builds jealously. I love the styling of Corvus Belli’s Infinity, Mass effect and the Stormwatch, but as one of the Aeon/Aberrant fan boi’s I also like the central conceit. Next year, anyone up for Aeon style Legionaries?
Yes doing 90’s Superheros is going to be tough, yes getting kit to match the concept art will be tough, but I think its got a great idea, the crew arn’t awful and more nerf based larp in our community is good as airsoft is more expensive, needs more safety equipment and just isn’t suitable for some styles of game.
Weirdly talking of Nerf, The steampunk post Martian invasion Age of Aether. I didn’t get to their stand, but worth a look.
Oh and Eyelarp has a website! That and they were to be offering a site and logistics service where they will run logistics and kit your game as a partner. Really good I reckon for people like me who are nervous about the costs of running a project or (like me) fail at basic organisation skills such as tying their own laces.
But the other thing about shows like Larpcon is you get to talk to people away from the field. Late night conversations with the folk at Mandala about game theory and concepts, discussing what the OfSTEAD grade for empires academy would be (old format satisfactory with elements of good, although putting together data showing pupil progression would push it over into good.),finding out about Jamie Wakefields planned Bardfest or getting history lessons about why a thing is a thing in Larp.
Its really great to get to talk to people like Wookie and Leah, just because I get to learn stuff, I get to froth about some of the ideas they have (and that’s just the ideas), and get to hear about good game theory. Oh and just talking to nice people about cool things is often its own reward. Its this stuff that is the star of trade events for me. Getting to talk about larp in general, ideas, possibilities and aspirations for games and the hobby.
Of course no show is complete without talks and unfortunately I only got to half of the two talks I wanted to. However Matt Pennington’s talk on sexual assault, based on facts, research and experience as an event runner dealing with this difficult subject was equal parts educational and sensitively handled. It was really good to learn about the facts around this and the that the policies PD use, based on research and good practice outside the Larp community, are in fact open source for you to do with as you will. The talk was videoed and if it gets released its well worth giving it a look.
The round table about diversity again was a really positive experience, chaired well and showed that when you remove the internet and talk about a subject with empathy and positivity you find that most people want positive outcomes. Our hobby has issues all over the place, but I think conversation face to face to look at them and solutions will effect change.
Once the talk has been typed up it will be sent out to the people taking part and I’ll make sure that I will put a copy on my blog. I was really proud to take part in it. In the mean time I’d suggest if you can there was an excellent interview with Lord John Bird on radio 2 on the 26th about the links between education and a more inclusive, equitable society. Real permanent change comes from education, empathy, social equality and looking for points of similarity rather than difference.
But you want to talk about the awards yourself right? First up, before we rabble rabble Twisted Tales won best overall larp. Got that? Awsome. I’ve never played it, but ive heard a huge pile of ‘this is great’ and how I missed a 18+ game about fairy tales…..
LT won best big Larp?
A pile of talent people put a game together that people like to play. That deserves recognition. That’s the essence of the awards. If that crew saw the awards as a thing that motivated them to make a better game good. Everyone wins. The awards are about that bit, the hard work people put in. Its strangely damning of our society that we look to tear down before praise. Personally I’m damn well going to find my way onto a sanctioned off the back of this, you won’t see me at a mainline, but yes I’d like to go do some sanctioned events
Were there any misfires? Yep there were, but amusingly Ian is really good at listening to and taking feedback. I Personally feel when someone puts a load of effort into actually putting on an event shouting about issues on the internet ain’t going to help. Taking time to think about constructive feedback and think about the issues that led to an issue rather than SHOUTING can help. ‘Cause you know positive change is bought about by empathy and education, not being a twat. Which actually makes it doubly hard for Ian to embrace change….
So yeah I’ll be there next year just as long as he promises to stop murdering baby pandas and telling kids that santa will kill them in their beds.