Last weekend (if you’re in the future that’s starting on March 24th 2017). I crewing at the Twilight Realms event “Black Heart”. The latest addition to an ongoing campaign in the clubs Tempress setting. This isn’t a review; I was playing a new NPC character so that makes me too close to the running of the event to do a proper impartial analysis. This is more of an overview.
As with all Tempress games this was a high fantasy event. As an ongoing part of the latest campaign it was very high stakes. The players are a party that have become embroiled in changes to the world following the rise of a resistance against a powerful and expanding empire (in game – the Helevetian Empire. Best thought of being very much this games version of the Roman Empire.)
The story was simple. Investigate what the “Empire” was doing in a seized portion of the country of Brindle. The problem, Brindle is a country once ruled by Vampires. Now at least a part of it is under the control of the empire who are undertaking some very unethical experiments on magic and immortality.
The game started on Friday night. Arrival on site was well organised in that – this is were you unload and this is your accommodation allocation. You knew where to go and people pitched in, making the unloading of cars a breeze.
From a crew point of view we had individual briefings. Meaning each NPC player only knew the information they were supposed to know. There was also a lot of written material to digest. I like this approach of only knowing what you need to know. It makes playing your specific part easier as you can just focus on what matters to your character.
Set dressing also proceeded quickly. The game was ready to play.
In this event Twilight Realms refs were trying out some new Walkie Talkies. This worked out great and really added to creating good game flow.
The game structure was this. Friday night introduced the story. Saturday was an open sandbox larp. The players could do whatever they wanted. In any way they wanted. Success would give them information and resources. Failure would have anything from no effect on the game world through to dire consequences. However personal failures and problems were also possible.
The actual end was a success in terms of the story. However the majority of the party were left with personal issues that will have to be dealt with.
My NPC was a researcher driven mad by the unexpected consequences of his work. A beautiful role that gave me a chance to play a large range of emotions. Ok – it meant I could ham it up. I was also able to work up some physical play using a walking stick. Perfect. Later in the game there was also a chance for a bit of monstering. So for me, this was a good event
In terms of game flow the players started as planned and then started to have all kinds of ideas. Some of them uncannily accurate. Others were wild flights of fancy. The refs and crew adapted by making decisions on encounters, information dispersal and the timings of NPC appearances.
This made the event a highly interactive experience.
At this point I’d like to make a special note of thanks to the monster crew. This team worked non stop to give the players a good experience.
That’s one of the reasons I like the Twilight Realms experience. Everyone, players and crew alike set out to create a great experience.
The ending of this event leaves with a lot of story options. Already there more than a little curiosity as to how the impact of Black Heart plays out.
Event Photo Gallery
All the photos for this event were taken by the Twilight Realms team.
The Bat Creatures
Dark Heart featured some large bat like monsters. During the game they became the players nightmares.
This footage is of the costumes undergoing testing
Please note that as Facebook video