It’s Sunday and by this point I can’t get over how busy the ritual circle has been. Rituals are an important part of this event; after all it’s full title is not Renewal. It is Renewal of Magic. Where the peoples of the world seek to perpetuate the continuation of magic in their world. Apparently there was a period when this was not done and the plot shifted to reflect that a balance had left the world.
The rituals are brilliantly done. There is a theatrical sound and lighting setup built around it and a control cabin. This runs the light and sound effects that enhance the immersion of rituals. Its also where the referee sits to judge how successful the ritual has been. This stage management makes turns the rituals into small stage performances in their own right and they are well worth watching.
I also kind of feel sorry for the ritual crew as the players are so into making these happen that there is a constant stream of them coming to the ritual circle from about 11am through to 2am.
Its also been a day for meeting people and conversation. The players at Renewal don’t just play Curious Pastimes events. They do other larps and some run somewhat systems of their own. We got the meet the creator of Green Cloaks. We’ve been talking about covering the Green Cloaks and this meeting also affirmed this and we’ll be attending events as soon as we can. He’s also a fascinating larp thinker so I am hoping that we can do an interview at this point. We were introduced by Curious Pastimes official photographer and as the conversation between all of us spun out we discussed a interesting idea regarding bringing people into larp. That is showing the social skills and benefits and larp brings. I’m not going to say more know but there is hope to turn this idea into a project and you can bet that we aim to be part of it.
There’s also a fledgling idea to build a Curious Pastimes media group. There is now quite a big media team made up of enthusiastic larpers and larp supporters. There is a hope to combine forces to be more effective.
In fact that’s not a bad idea for all larps. Do we need to rely on mainstream media when we are now fully capable of reaching out into the world with our own.
Back to the game.
There was loads of character chat going on but the main focus of the day was a major battle. The focus of Sunday and Monday are large scale battles that can easily last several hours.
This one did not go for well for the players. They lost their main objectives early on and were pretty much in trouble from that point on.
For me its nice to see a game that follows the plot and the outcomes. If things go well there are benefits, if not consequences. Bravo is what I say for following the story.
Time was spent also in the bar. So much roleplaying and conversations going on here. Its also on the main route through the site so you can see the hustle and bustle of players passing by. Its not just a place for drink and roleplaying. You can be here and be aware of that you are in place where there is a lot going on.
More than anything Sunday was a day that showed there is a lot going on.
The Video Diary
Ok so today is Saturday and time in is at 10am. Saturday and Sunday at this event are running from 10am till 2am.
For me the day started with posting the first diary and then getting over to the Wolves encampment to prepare for a planned skirmish that is part of the factions plot.
Going into this faction in the morning was something a little bit special. I’m still getting to grips with my character. I’m staying out of direct combat for medical reasons but that doesn’t stop me casting spells and supporting people in a ruck. One thing I realise is that if this was my full weekend role (as opposed to role playing and blogging), then I’d be writing up spell books and interacting more with the factions lead spell casters. The camp is set up to support new players. So once people get to know you are knew offers of help come in.
I was there for all the built up for the skirmish. There were tactical briefings, weapons checks, quick guides and also some really good story telling. In fact the story telling was first class and really helped set up the atmosphere
It was atmosphere that was the overwhelming feel of the camp. It was morning and people were cooking food, eating, relaxing and sorting out the start of the day. There was worrying about loved ones going into battle and bravado from the fighters. This felt like a real community come together for a purpose and preparing for a difficult task ahead.
Then there was the battle. The battles have been fast and furious. There are character deaths. But in an appropriate fashion. In this event the players have been storming their nemesis and that has led to tough fights. Very tough and hard one fights. That feels like the game is not being given away. Progress is being earned the hard way and that makes things satisfying.
After which it was time for a break and then a a little shopping (good prices to be found), and putting my photo head on. First period of full day light. The game did not disappoint. Lots of great costuming, people practising and also a good skirmish.
After that a beer was needed.
Good use is being made of the Crimson Moons permanent tab service. We’ll have to discuss this at some time as it really is a great service to larpers.
The day progressed with in game rituals. Seeing different parts of the event and also looking at the results of the rest of the media crew. Later on we had a really good chat about larps and weapons checking. A few terrifyingly dangerous weapons had turned up for the day.
That was also the end of roleplaying for the day for me as Stuart arrived early and we retired to the bar for few drinks and too catch up on things
The Video Diary
Our apologies about this video coming out a slightly wrong. We’ll be fixing this at a later date but for some reason Facebook decided to put a video recorded in landscape orientation to portrait.
First of all I want to say a big thank you to Curious Pastimes for giving us full access to their events. In particular Renewal. This is our first full year at Renewal. Last year we arrived late due to a Pirate Festival related injury.
For those of you out of the UK or who may not know Curious Pastimes run a professional campaign. They are one of the UKs largest larp companies and focus on 4 fest larps every year. Renewal takes place during the end of August bank holiday.
We’re been given a place in crew. Let me tell you that Curious Pastimes treats their crew well. There are allocated crew accommodation areas, a crew canteen that keeps the crew fed and watered, and also work areas for people working during the game, This includes the considerable media crew. Curious Pastimes takes some care in making sure there is plenty of good quality video and imagery associated with the event.
That’s the background.
How is the event going so far?
Well I mentioned the crew canteen. Well I’ve been well fed so that is a plus. The weather is warm. Fingers crossed on it staying that way. So far its been all about the setup. Crew furiously building and preparing props. Other crew running making sure everything is in place and the games operation office dealing with a stream of issues.
In other words its all hands on deck.
I’ve been testing out my video recording capability and getting a feel for the site.
Its all about the prep, and that is just the morning
Afternoon is more of the same. Time in is 7pm. Only a few people in costume early. Most are wandering around getting things done in jeans and T-Shirts. I made the rookie mistake of early costume. So got out of that.
There is a small and vibrant traders market. Lots of very nice kit up for sale and I’ve lined up some video interviews. We’ll be starting to shoot thee on Sunday. So seeing as is Friday I am afraid to say there will be a little wait.
In terms of game prep I have a new character freshly generated.
So far I am liking that I can take this day at my own pace.
So we hit time in with an enormous battle as factions fought their way onto site. Once on people settled into their own factions and the non combat role-play absolutely settled in. People also settled into the food vendors and the bar. Its a friendly easy to get involved with people atmosphere.
I’ll talk more about the layout of the event in later posts – that needs a bit more time of its own. For now though I have some photos and a video diary for you.
This first set of images is just a couple of scenes from throughout the day. There are some photos of the crew setting up – but I’ll avoid these until the event is over.
How to get girls
Shopping at Dark Blade
Shopping at Skian Mohr
Suits you sir
Just a walk in quiet lane
Why are there chains?
The Video Diary Part 1
LARPBook interviews Danny Gomez of First Person Xperience. We talked about RED. A new post apocalypse experience that is launching on the 11th of May 2017.
Here’s the link to RED
RED sounds like it’s a combination of theatre and larp. It’s built so that can enter it with no real preparation but still have an immersive and unique experience. It sounds like a lot of work has gone into making it self customising. Much in a same way that a larp adjusts to the actions of its players. Its also clear that its not an Escape Room. Escape Rooms are fundamentally puzzles, whilst this seems to more story based. So it has a start and an outcome. The outcome depends on player actions. So again more larp like than some other mainstream offerings.
It straddles the world between mainstream and larp. Great fun for a group of friends who know nothing about larp. Great fun for larpers who could really get into it. Possibly both playing at the same time. Each run has a 75 minute duration which makes incorporating into a day out quite easy.
If you’re interested in going – then book quick as we have a promo code
The code is
It’ll get you a free upgrade to next tier of ticket above the one your purchase. The code is limited to the first 100.
If you go – we’d love to hear of your experience in RED. LARPBook is very keen on hearing how this runs.
Welcome to Crescendo Giocoso, a Kickstarter project of 12 larps that exist as a play list. Why a play list? Well we have a good many styles of larp design – like Nordic, Freeform, Boffer and so on. Here’s a new one. a set of larps conceived of and put together by a team who’s method of working more resembles an orchestra than other traditional approaches. The result is that they call themselves the Larp Chamber Orchestra.
Lets look at this by playing their Kickstarer video
So you can see that this Kickstarter is designed to create a book of 12 larps. The number of players for these ranges from 2 to 30. Behind each of these larps is a common design mindset. That changes how the game is described to a group. Instead of one person explaining or running the larp, all players gain the understanding of how to play as a whole. A bit like a group of musicians learning to play a piece of music.
So instead of the idea of an author led larp (a bit like a novel), or director led larp (a bit like a film) to something that is more like a jam session. At least that’s the vibe I’m picking up on. I think the idea is that a group of people can just start to play the larp.
The 12 larps in this Kickstarter are arranged in a play list – starting with 2 players and then working up to 30 players. So if played in order the scale gets bigger and bigger. Just like a musical crescendo.
It’s a fascinating idea.
As I mentioned this is a Kickstarter so you can learn more about about this project by clicking here.
I really hope they reach their targets as its a cool concepts and the larps look good.