Larpwright: Björn-Ole Kamm
In cooperation with: Katō Kōhei, CLOSS Larp
This is a larp about feelings of comfort and safety pitched against the necessity to leave the source of these emotions behind. Dealing with the question of leaving the familiar or staying behind, the larp moves from the fantastic to the everyday in three scenarios, a remote pseudo-medieval village facing a plague, a post-apocalyptic shelter running out of resources, and a single room, in which the different mental and emotional faculties of a single person are faced with suddenly diminishing comfort. How would you choose? The known threat or the unknown salvation?
Genre: Abstract to absurd realism
Duration: 5.5 hours
Actual play time: 3.5 hours
Number of participants (min-max): 3-7 (always an odd number)
Playing style: Realistic, but with plenty of improvisation
What is larp?
Larp is originally an acronym for Live Action Role Playing, but today it’s used as a name in itself. It refers to a type of interactive game or storytelling in which the players assume a role and act as a character within the set fiction. It can be described as a combination of theater without an audience, shared narrative construction, and game-like challenges.
There are may different traditions and genres of larp, the best-known and globally most popular are fantasy events with hundreds, if not thousands of players enacting worlds similar to MiddleEarth and horror events where players either fight zombies or hunt for prey themselves as vampires.
“Village, Shelter, Comfort” belongs to the artistic, educational, and often political tradition commonly referred to as “Nordic larp,” as this style emerged in the Scandinavian countries. This tradition “views larp as a valid form of expression, worthy of debate, analysis and continuous experimentation, which emerged around the Knutepunkt convention. It typically values thematic coherence, continuous illusion, action and immersion, while keeping the larp co-creative and its production uncommercial. Workshops and debriefs are common.” (Stenros, Nordic Larp Talks 2013).
What will you do during this larp?
First, you will receive information about the larp’s background, about how it is played, about safety and co-creation through improvisation. You will then receive or pick a character (e.g., a town’s mayor or its priest), give it a name, think about its relationship to the other characters, and lastly play this character in a scenario of six scenes. Each scene will more or less center on the discussion between the characters. In the final scene you will have to make a decision about the dilemma you are presented with in the previous scenes. After a short break, you will repeat these steps for the other two scenarios (the post-apocalyptic shelter and the contemporary room).
This larp is not about making the correct decision, gaining a level or winning. It is about collaboratively creating a story and experiencing a given dilemma.
Thus, the larp includes a debriefing where all participants talk about their experience during the larp. If time permits, this would include a new visualization technique developed for such a debriefing.