Guest Post: Tips for Playing an Abrasive Character

The following is an article written by a friend, while it is oriented towards Larping, I believe the elements within can also be applied to tabletop roleplaying as well.
Steve is a larper and friend that I have been gaming with for the past seven years. I fully endorse this article and agree wholeheartedly. I couldn’t have written it better myself, which is why I am hosting his! And yes, that is his real name.
-Wren


Tips for Playing an Abrasive Character

by Steve Rogers, a Director of Divine Intervention Larp

 


Playing an abrasive character at a LARP can be a very fun and rewarding experience. However, it can be fairly difficult to balance playing a mean, contrary, or negative character without letting those actions translate into negative OOG actions. Below are some tips that may be useful in playing that sort of character. (For the purpose of this document, I’m going to use the term “abrasive” to apply to a pretty wide variety of character traits player characters might use, from “my character is intentionally kind of annoying” to “my character is a huge asshole to everyone”.) The intent here is not to tell people how to play their characters; only to offer advice on playing a character archetype that can be difficult to portray and potentially contentious if in-game feelings run into out-of-game feelings. 

Continue reading “Guest Post: Tips for Playing an Abrasive Character”

“Promise me you’ll never forget me because if I thought you would, I’d never leave.”

  -A.A. Milne

I start getting into some pretty fun topics in the coming weeks, and I realized I ultimately don’t have much written here about my *past* LARPing experiences yet. I will sometimes reference characters and games that I no longer play, or that no longer exist, so in order for that all to make sense, today’s post is about some of my favorite past player characters.

*In order to make this post not an essay length, I am omitting characters that I only played for one game to test the game out. And I am also not including NPC roles.


 

Detective AC Mortmaine:
Steam & Cinders Larp (Steampunk)

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Name: Lady Alice Cassandra Mortmaine-DeVoe

Occupation: Private Detective > Town Constable > Chief of Police
Fighting Style: Two very fancy fencing swords. Florentine. (Essentially a Ranger build) Favored attack was “Disarm.”
Backstory: Was a police clerk for many years, couldn’t rise up in the ranks because she was not willing to take bribes. Struck out on her own to form her own detective agency, followed leads about the serial killer “Gregor the Organist” to the town of Iron City.
Dark Secret: Believed that she was secretly a witch with mind powers. (Don’t worry, it was just the mercury poisoning.)
Happy Ending?: She got to marry her longtime girlfriend and forensic scientist partner Sophia. But she also had to mercy kill her own brother who got taken over by eldritch horrors, so, you know.


Courier Izzy Lastrano:
Second Dawn Larp (Post Apocalyptic)

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Name: Isobel Lastrano, or Courier Izzy!

Occupation: Mail Carrier!
Fighting Style: A Sword almost as tall as me. Sometimes a big turret gun. Oddly enough, she was a bard build. Favored call: “Inspire!”
Backstory: Was a low level noble daughter of a house in a post apocalyptic wasteland feudal system. Escaped that life to become a Postman!
Dark Secret: Had kinda faked her death a little bit to leave the keep.
Happy Ending?: Izzy ultimately died trying to save her robot friends from being mind wiped to use as shells for space people. So, yes? She also was able to save the serfs in her previous kingdom by helping them escape and live with fundertakers. (That is a very long story. Second Dawn was a trip.)


Sanura:
Steam & Cinders Larp (Steampunk)

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Name: Citizen Sanura Kaniik

Occupation: Freelance Engineer > Head of the Iron City Engineer Guild > Town Councilman
Fighting Style: Gun in one hand, sword in the other. Favored call: “Maim”
Backstory: Left her communist home country after a lab accident. She was estranged from her husband and sad about it.
Dark Secret: Ended up working for the God of Entropy to take down the world.
Happy Ending? I retired the character/killed her off after it became too stressful to play a secret bad guy.


Ebur Chantarelle:
Divine Intervention Larp (Magepunk)

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Name: Ebur Chantarelle

Occupation: Fathom Collectible Card Game Board Certified Tournament Judge!
Backstory: Simple Farmer, joined the Fathom league, moved to Brink to Judge Annual Tournaments.
Fighting Style: A Very large wooden hammer. Sometimes a very small bow. Favored attack: “Break Weapon.”
Dark Secret: Honestly, not really. They didn’t want kids and so they left behind a divorcee. That is not really dark so much as too real. Haha.
Happy Ending? I hope so! I am still playing them.


Evelyn Peabody:
Lacuna Cathect ARG (Corporate Supernatural/ Modern Day)

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Name: Evelyn Peabody

Occupation: Spiritual Advisor and Crystal Healer > Ghost artifact collector
Fighting Style: Hiding under a magical umbrella that made her impervious to damage.
Backstory: Evelyn had a nice house in the woods where she took in injured animals and also helped people with magical problems. She was recruited by Lacuna Corp. to help hunt ghost artifacts.
Dark Secret: None, she was a pure bean.
Happy Ending? She ended up in a weird ghost mental prison while fighting the big bad.


Leigh DeVoe:
FourTwenty ARG (Superhero/Future)

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Name: Leigh DeVoe aka ELLE aka Battery

Occupation: Librarian > Spy
Fighting Style: Hiding behind the strong characters and boosting their powers.
Backstory: Leigh was a pretty simple quiet nerd until the day the FourTwenty attacks turned a handful of people into mutants. Then she developed powers, unable to touch other mutants without them siphoning her life force.
Dark Secret: In the attacks, her love interest, Meredith, died. She became very goth and angsty after that.
Happy Ending? She got a girlfriend, became a spy, fought for the good guys, but ultimately got mind controlled in the final fight to be used as a power battery for them which weakened her so much that when she broke free and tried to stop the big bad she died in a small explosion.


Prudence Henderson:
Ashwick Larp (Colonial Horror)

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Name: Prudence Henderson

Occupation: Housewife > Deputy > Mayor of Modern Day Ashwick
Fighting Style: Human: screaming and hiding. Vampire: Swords and Teeth
Backstory: Prudence was a dutiful housewife to Obediah, and a caring sister to Percival. The family moved to Ashwick after a horrid curse killed all of their chickens.
Dark Secret: Well, eventually she got turned into a vampire. But before that she was a pretty evil Puritan lady.
Happy Ending? She was turned into a Vampire and was able to shake off all the pesky religion. She remained in Ashwick, where she is the Mayor today. She traded in the bonnet for pantsuits and her husband became her ghost butler.


 

Larp Prep Series: Packing! (Pt. Two)

Packing for Divine Intervention LARP: Part Two:

Costuming and Personal Effects

 

Part of a series in which I pack my kit for DI Larp. I pack a little heavy for this game, you will not have to pack this much in general for your standard weekend long boffer event.


This category could essentially be called: the only category that is really essential to actually play the game. One does not need to bring the food that I mentioned before, or the set dressing for their cabin that I will mention in the next post, to actually play the game. However, you do need a costume and a weapon, in general, at the bare minimum.

Continue reading “Larp Prep Series: Packing! (Pt. Two)”

“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you.”

-Roald Dahl

I drafted this a few months ago when I was trying to brainstorm this blog because so many of my friends have glasses woes. This is not meant to be the authority on glasses at larp, just my own experience, and I am happy to update if anyone has input!

Larping for Glasses Wearers!

As someone who wears glasses, weighing the pros and cons of wearing them at game can be daunting, I have heard all the arguments that wearing glasses at a combat game is unsafe, might break immersion if the game setting is not one where glasses are common, they are too expensive to bring to a game where one might lose them, etc…

While there are elements of truth to all of this, I have found that there are many ways to be able to attend a LARP and still be able to see! Continue reading ““And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you.””

On Larp and Community

Content Warning: I will be speaking about a traumatic death in my family. Please do not feel the need to read this if that is upsetting to you. The story has a good message, I think, but I do not want anyone troubled by my telling of it.


I am coming up on big anniversary for me, which is a sad anniversary, but also in a silver lining, bittersweet, sort of way is also a happy anniversary.

Continue reading “On Larp and Community”