Live Action Roleplay and One World By Night
Live action roleplay is probably one of the ultimate forms of geekery. Wendy chats about why she loves dressing up as a crazed artist in ‘One World by Night’ even more than making Tara and Willow get it on in ‘The Sims’…
It’s a typical Saturday night at one of Tampa’s luxury hotels. Suddenly, The Count bursts into the room. His hearty voice booms throughout the ballroom as he claps some of Tampa’s residents on the back, addressing others by name.
In the corner, Magister Thoren broods. He is plotting, as he always does. So many actions to consider. So much power to be had. He is planning what he will do tonight, but also what he hopes will transpire 50 years from tonight.
As Prince Saladin enters, the court stands to pay their respects. With a benevolent smile, he urges them to sit. Our gathering has begun, and I watch it all from my chair, thinking of my own plans.
One World by Night is a chronicle of Vampire: The Masquerade, an international game that takes up much of my time. I enjoy Live Action Role Playing, for the costumes and the chance to develop a strong character with depth and fascinating pursuits. I love sitting in a classroom at the university and envisioning I’m somewhere more exciting, more luxurious. I even love the people I spend my weekends with and the late-night bytch sessions that start after midnight, usually with a pizza. All of this labels me a geek. But, not just any geek. An uber-geek.
Perhaps I can’t really say that. I don’t play many online games, and my video game playing is reserved for role-playing games I find super pretty and, of course, The Sims. Although, as a literary geek, I can attest to the fact that my neighborhood is populated with Cthulhu Sims and aliens. Many an hour has been spent scouring the internet for strange new breeds to enter my world, but at least I’ve gotten out of the Buffy Sims phase, where Tara and Willow had their own house and I made them do the nasty at least once a day.
Since I’m beginning to digress, I should get to the heart of the matter. There are a few reasons why I really love the OWbN LARP more than smaller groups in my area. A few reasons that I gladly give up my weekends to play pretend, usually with a group of men.
1. The game is international.
I’m a big fan of the message boards we use. I can talk to players in Wisconsin or Brazil. And, if I move to London some day, I can start my own game there and still play. Or, I can join a game if one pops up.
2. There are universal rules.
I don’t have to worry about rules changing if I go to another OWbN game. This is a problem with both tabletop and independent LARP games. Sometimes, to make things more interesting or simpler, the people in charge will change the rules to fit circumstances or the group playing. While not necessarily a bad thing, it can be confusing.
3. Characters can be moved between games.
If I take a vacation in New York, I can alert one of their games of when I’ll be there, and join from where I left off. I love my character so much, I have a hard time leaving her behind during other games. In fact, I have a side character I’ve never played, because I always play my Evelyn, a psycho artist who paints her interpretation of the traumatic events going on around her.
4. As a girl role player, I’m a minority.
This means I get a lot of attention. It can be both good and bad, but to many gamers, a girl gamer is like a rare bird. It’s worked out in my favor quite a bit.
5. OWbN games have staffs that usually can handle a large turnout.
Some nights, we have 15-20 people playing. Others, we have 50 or more. If players decide to come en masse to our game from a far away locale, we can deal with it. If new players come who have never played a role playing game in their life, we can deal with it. Having that much flexibility in the game can make things interesting.
Girl’s guide to live action roleplay (beginner’s guide)
One world by night (Vampire-based LRP game)
www.legionofdreams.com (UK live action roleplay group)