Larps that inspired you this decade

Its the end of the year, and the end of the decade (if you use proper 0-based counting, and not some FORTRAN stuff), so everyone is doing retrospectives and listicles. Over on PrivacyInvasionBook, one of my friends is doing a list of tabletop rpgs that inspired / influenced them by decade. That seems like too long a time-scale, so I thought I’d just pull out a random grab-bag of larps that have inspired me / shown me how to do things differently from the past decade:

  • The Heat at 3AM: @tigger’s film noir masterpiece. Its a theatreform, but draws on campaign-larp styles to have a rotating crew of NPCs to stir the pot and make sure everyone gets their special moment. Break Room 3: Basilisk Green does a similar thing, but not as focused.
  • The Kestrel saga: A series of SF theatreforms (really a stealth campaign), which showed how you can do sequels in that format. My regency /Downton Abbey duo, Longmuir Hall and Property & Propriety was inspired by that structure.
  • Tears of Heaven: introduced me to walking larps, but also used its structure (specifically the watches in the night) to keep the conversation going. @Ciaran should really publish this one.
  • Will That Be All: showed me that workshops aren’t always bullshit, and that you can produce strong, emotional play in a short format without needing pre-designed relationships.
  • Boats Against the Current: From @Anna_K. Showed me that you don’t need active plot, and that you can just do a game about getting drunk on a boat while waiting to find out what happened.

So, what laps influenced you this decade?

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The Lazarus Bar and Grill: I love the bar set up (it might have inspired the set up of Londinium Rising) and the characters were fascinating. I really liked the disability rep in the characters - I always find it sinister when there are no people with disabilities in science fiction, because it has sinister implications.

Consequence: weird to be inspired by a larp that hasn’t run yet, but I really liked the rules and the “Get out of dodge” ability’s a piece of genius. The character/skill list is amazing. So much work and thought went into it - it’s awesome and original.

Blood in the furrows: Again, a larp that hasn’t even been run yet. But the character creation process is pretty cool and the skillset is wonderfully atmospheric - and the welfare and expectations documents are pretty great.

Exile: The best lore/history I’ve ever run into. Taking into account historical bias/unreliable narrator, it fits together like a glorious jigsaw box. It’s never felt forced or hurried.

World that is: A really excellent larp with a format I shamelessly stole.

The train will whistle one last time: another 8 hour larp, with such a gorgeous plot I adored: it didn’t feel like spending 8 hours in a room about 4x8m. Gorgeously emotive, with some amazing roleplayers.


I mean, Consequence has run! Though game one was only a a few months ago.

All of them in some way that I have attended inspired me. Which is very vague, but I have attended so so so many LARPs

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