It’s been a couple years since I last larped. I really enjoy it but I always forget to register in time. If you’re late, the player roles are gone and you’re stuck with the non player characters. Those are the ones who have to do what the dungeon masters say. So if you’re just a casual participant you usually end up as cannon fodder, which means wearing a stinky sweaty latex mask and repeatedly being bashed by gangs of burly knights. A lot of the men are just in it for the battles and not so much for the story mode.
Somebody put an archive of larp games online. I had some fun browsing around in it. I am not in many pictures but here is one, with the other people anonymised. Note the very medieval car in the background and the strange wizard in the middle. Looks like a gathering of rangers and wizards judging by the outfits. No knights in shining armour. (not that they usually wear shining full plate armour and real leather fastenings, velcro is king in larpland plus real full plate weighs a ton, well, figuratively speaking)
Here I’m wearing leather with metal washers stuck on them. One extra point of protection compared to just leather I believe. Theoretical protection because when you get hit by someone it hurts as much as with simple cloth in reality. I am not sure why I am carrying a longsword, (Foam, obviously. If it were real swords, they’d soon run out of players.) Probably just because it was allowed. I’m a shitty swordfighter, but at least it’s great to keep the moths away. Not that there were many moths. We played at Montmédy in winter.
Montmédy (not to be confused with Monthléry, lol) is a citadel in the north of France. Link on the name. There are some houses in the walled section but mostly it were empty military barracks, high walls and deep drops. There was barely anything with regard to accomodation so we slept in one of the barracks on crappy humid camp beds. No doors, no windows, no heating no light. It was freezing cold, literally. There was ice on the puddles in the room and my sleeping bag was not adequate for the conditions and also it got wet during the night. I’ve never been so cold, I think. And others told me it weren’t even the worst conditions they’d played in. Once they had played there when it was even colder and snowing.
We’ve often played in real medieval castles and in ruins which was great. Larping also helps when you’re writing stories in such a setting. You have some idea what it’s like: being alone for hours in pitch black forests, the adrenaline of a mass battle, being cold and hungry and wet when it’s been raining all weekend, sleeping in armour with one eye open because there could be an attack, standing guard etc. And the bruises and the blood, obviously. But not too often.
My character didn’t survive that weekend, by the way. It was sacrifised by the dark elves.