April 2018


AFK – The Webseries launched their kickstarter recently and we were able to get an interview with the director, writer, costume designer and editor of the series, Peter Haynes! Here is what he had to say:

AFK Cast

Q:    Tell us about AFK – The Webseries and what the story is about! Who are the main characters and what are their roles?

 ‘AFK’ is a look at what would happen to a group of modern gamers if they were suddenly forced to really inhabit the world they spend so long in virtually – a world away from modern conveniences and technology, where they have to live off the land. A world with no rules, no game masters, and no multiple lives….only the survival of the fittest, fastest, strongest and most cunning. Basically, AFK is ‘Lord of the Rings’ meets ‘Battle Royale’.

 Being in the bodies of their MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role playing game) characters, some of the cast are also genderswapped, and have to deal with all the issues that go with that.

 The main characters are Maybel the girl gamer in the body of a male Gnome, and Steven the warrior, a guy who finds himself in the body of a scantily clad and impractically armored female warrior. There is also Brendon the wizard, a 15 year old suddenly trapped in an adult form, and V’rugga the orc, actually an 8 year old who just wanted to play the biggest, meanest looking character. Lastly there is also Jack the rogue, a somewhat arrogant power gamer, and finally their leader, Q.

 Q seems very comfortable in her new form, and one of the series’ most compelling mysteries will be discovering her background, and whether or not she is even female.


Q:    How did you come up with the concept for this webseries and each of the character concepts?

I used to play a lot of World of Warcraft, and many of these characters are archetypes of other gamers who inhabited that world. Jack is the classic hardcore power gamer, always striving to have the best gear and the highest damage. Maybel is a female gamer who plays a male character because she gets tired of guys hitting on her. Steven is a very casual player, who doesn’t actually know the game very well. I wondered how these very different personalities would or could work together if they were thrown into this new and very high-stakes environment.

Q: What lead you to select each of the people that are playing the character roles? Production Still - Kick to the Gut

I pretty much got my dream cast for these roles. Mia Pistorious is totally believable as Q the leader, and is a highly physical actress. She basically learned how to swordfight in a totally convincing manner in just over two weeks. Calum Gittins, playing Jack, was a hardcore gamer, and so totally gets the mindset. Dallas Barnett, who plays V’rugga has often been typecast as a tough guy/bad guy, so I thought it would be fun to put him in the mind of an 8 year old boy, which he enjoyed immensely. All of the actors bring something unique to each of their roles, and they clicked together really well in the short time we had to shoot the trailer.

AFK - On Set

 Q:    Have you larped before? If so, what do you like about it? 

I have, and I have to say one of my favorite aspects of larping is the costuming.  The amount of work and detail and dedication that some people put into a costume that may only be used for a weekend always amazes me.

Q: For the main female character in particular – have you ever larped before? If so, what do you like about it?

Mia Pistorious (Actress who plays Q): I’ve never larped before or known much about it but became fascinated by the idea while working on the AFK project with people who Larp. As an actress I think of larping as another form of acting and think it would be a great experience to be fully immersed in such a process.

Q:    Peter, why did you choose to make the main character a larper?

AFK - BattleBecause it struck me that a larper, also being a reenactor, would have a unique set of skills to survive in this new world. She knows how to fight with a sword, she’s also done SCA combat, she knows archery, she’s camped in medieval camps and lived a bit rough. In the real world, the ‘cool kids’, like Jack the powergamer, might look down their noses at her choice of hobbies, but here, they’re pretty much dependent on her for survival. I think it’s a nice turnaround.

It’s also a kind of thanks to the local NZ larping community, who have helped this project become a reality in a big way not only by lending time, costumes and resources, but also training. Mia was trained in sword fighting by Vanya Essin, a local larper and display fighter, and it all shows on screen. I fully intend to keep the larping community involved should this project go ahead.


Q:    What is your goal with the series? Are you trying to get any point across or is it just for fun?

We want it to be fun, and enjoyable to watch, but I also wanted to explore how far we’ve become removed from the AFK - Lookin Coolreality of the experiences that we like to immerse ourselves in a computer game like World of Warcraft. In reality, living off the land is hard. Hunting is hard. Sleeping rough is hard. Not knowing where your next meal is coming from is hard. These guys will have to really pull it together and rediscover some pretty ancient skills just to survive the first week.

Q:    Where did the filming for the trailer take place?

The trailer was filmed entirely in Auckland, New Zealand, and 90% on Mt. Wellington, which is in the middle of one of our busiest suburbs. A small volcanic cone, the mountain has a surprising amount of beautiful scenery in a very small area, and is remarkably quiet. Of course, if we do go ahead, then we’ll range further afield, and we even hope to get some support from tourism NZ to shoot in some of the national parks for a truly epic look


AFK - Moutain Scene

Q:    What are ways someone can help get the project off the ground?

The ways people can help this project are many and varied. They can share our trailer on Youtube or our Kickstarter Campaign.

They can like’our Facebook Page, and invite others to like it as well.

And finally, they can just spread the word. If they have a gaming blog, then give us a plug. If they frequent a MMORPG forum, start a thread about us. Post a link about us on Reddit. We never know which one is going to be the magic link that will make us go viral, so every little bit counts.

Thank you so much for the interview, Peter, and good luck with the project!

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Apr 15, 2014

I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t be quick to elect a mass-murderer bent on ending humanity into a political position of any kind, much less over an entire state. Yet some how, he won the votes of thousands despite his past actions and representations. I’m talking about former Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger of course. How could anyone trust someone who willingly acted out the role of someone involved in the ruthless murder of several people? Did the public not know of his scandalous involvement in taking on the role of “The Terminator?”

Image Source

Arnold the man vs Arnold the Terminator –   Image Source

Of course they did, and it didn’t matter, because Arnold is an actor, and everyone knows that. Taken out of context, Schwarzenegger’s acting career could possibly raise more than a few eyebrows, but acting for the silver screen is a well known profession and everyone knows an actor is just that, an actor. Their characters in no way represent who they are as person outside of the role, despite them taking on the persona for what ever film or theatre character they are portraying.

Jake Rush and his Wife

Jake Rush and his Wife

Larping.org has been following the political hype being raised by Florida Congressman Ted Yoho in trying to derail Congressional Candidate Jake Rush’s position by posting quotes and pictures regarding his involvement in role playing as part of the Mind’s Eye Society. Mind’s Eye Society is a role playing group that acts out scenarios involving vampire and punk culture. Comparing Rush to his Mind’s Eye characters in a political context is really no different than trying to compare Schwarzenegger to the Terminator. Rush was acting, Arnold was acting. It’s as simple as that.

LARPing, by definition, is Live Action Role Playing. One of the beauties of the hobby is the ability to take on the role and persona of someone totally different than yourself. It’s a safe place to explore different fields of emotion and reactions than one would usually be able to experience outside of a role-played scenario. But at the end of the day, it’s just a persona, and once the game is over the characters played remain just that, characters inside a game.

Rush was raised in a family that appreciated and celebrated theater and acting. In a recent press release, he said his father, Robert Rush, produced an off-broadway play about the impact of Elvis called “Elvis People.”

Rush stated “My undergraduate degree is in the classics, and I have been raised with a deep appreciation for theatre, costumes and art.”

“The very definition of acting is expressing ideas and thoughts that are not your own,  just like I don’t believe I am MacBeth, which I have played, I am none of the characters,” he continued.

And we couldn’t agree more! We were recently asked by the BBC for a statement regarding LARPers’ opinions on the whole run through the media about Rush’s involvement with LARPing and our own Tom Miller responded by explaining that within the context of a game, actions and conversations can be made that when heard or seen by the general public may seem quite unsettling. This out of context depiction of LARP is one of the leading causes of misconceptions and confusion within general public on the subject of LARP.

Image Source

One of the images being used to portray Rush – Image Source

Most comments we’ve read regarding the whole fiasco are actually in Rush’s favor, making the attempts at derailing his reputation by bringing up his hobbies almost laughable. Who would have thought a political candidate was a real person, self-proclaimed gamer, LARPer, and actor with hobbies? I actually like his black Scleral full eye contacts myself and kind of want a pair….but that’s beside the point.

In the end, hobbies are hobbies, and politics are politics and we think it best if they were kept that way! Except when it comes to a LARP game involving role playing politicians, of course. And as far as congressional hobbies go, I’d take LARPing over golf any day. Besides, who wouldn’t want to see a congressional candidate in a Flash suit? Game on, Jake Rush, game on.

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Apr 03, 2014

This was a great talk given by Lizzie Stark at the Living Games Conference which took place in New York March 14th-16th. She wrote up this article based on her keynote speech discussing how to create a positive and inclusive community for your larp. It has some great incites on how you can not only help your own larp have a great atmosphere, but also how you can help the larp community among several games in your area. Thank you for this great write-up Lizzie!

If you would like to learn more about Lizzie Stark and her work, you can visit her website or check her out on facebook.

Lizzy Stark (2)

Lizzie writes, “Last weekend I had the honor of delivering one of the keynotes at the Living Games Conference, the US’s first academic larp conference. The whole experience was a blast, and I wanted to post some of my notes for whoever wants them.

“Some issues around community include, how to introduce new things to existing communities, how to capture people not currently into gaming and get them into larp, and how to be intentional about the community you are creating. One of the things I love about gaming in general and larp in particular, is that it’s a social hack: even if the experience sucks, it bonds you together.

“When we design games, the rules and guidelines structure a social interaction. In the same way, we can use rules and guidelines to structure community interaction–we can do social engineering for good.”

To read more about Lizzie Stark’s advice on how to create a strong gaming community for your game and your larp community, you can find the full article here.

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Mar 28, 2014

Finally a show that laughs WITH LARPers instead of at them!

LARPs: The Series

We’ve heard the promises for years. They’ve been heralded from across the world and from larp to larp. “This movie will be the one! The one to finally show what larp is actually like!” they told us. “This will be funny, insightful, slightly self-depricating, but honest in it’s attempt to capture the glory that is LARP!” And we’re always disappointed…

Until now! The above quote comes from Tom Miller, resident artist and Creative Director here at Larping.org, and he sums up our collective sentiments. When I first saw this popup in my inbox, I thought, “Oh man, another lame attempt at a larp web show…here we go…” (ok, I’m jaded, guilty as charged!), but oh man I was completely wrong about this one.

From start to finish I was drawn in, engaged and chuckling along with the jokes. My only disappointment was that the clip ended! We can’t wait to see more and hope that you will heartily support, share and help get the word out about this awesome web series. We think that LARPs: The Series is finally the show that will let the world know what our hobby is really about and like. No small feat.

This is what we've been waiting for!

About the Show:

LARPs is a fictional web series that explores how roleplaying games influence real life and vice versa. Five twenty-something friends meet regularly to play in a live-action roleplaying game (known as a LARP). We follow these LARPers through their daily lives and see the parallels between the game and the real world.

LARPs presents roleplaying as a normal hobby while acknowledging the sometimes eccentric nature of its players. Thousands of men and women roleplay around the globe. LARPs gives its audience a glimpse into their passion while still examining the realities of life outside the game.

Episode 1 Arrives March 10th! For now, check out the Pilot!

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Feb 07, 2014

This is a continuing series of blog posts that exposes the raw ego, naked agony, and rare raptures associated with designing a live action role playing event, The Dreamlands, from scratch. I hope this collection of self-reflections serves you as either an inspirational anthem or a cautionary tale of dire warning—it might be both.

Thanking the GMs, fellow players and Enigma at the LARPY Awards

Mike Tice thanking the GMs, fellow players and Enigma at the LARPY Awards

“I don’t know what all this trouble is about, but I’m sure it must be your fault.” – C3PO to R2D2 (Star Wars)

Larp Design

I postponed The Dreamlands larp. There were not enough players to support the structure (close, but not quite), nor did I have enough time to assemble or build everything I wanted. I overbooked myself this year, and now I pay the price. However, this means that I have more time to prepare the larp for spring 2014 and write some more articles about it. This delay of the larp dovetails nicely with something I’ve wanted to talk about for a while: blame and credit.

To whom do you hold accountable for your experience at a larp?

I see four entities contributing to the overall role-playing escapade:

  1. The larpwright(s), scenario writer(s), or system/rules creator(s)
  2. The event staff/GMs (not always the game designer)
  3. The other participants (NPCs or PCs)
  4. Yourself

Of course a combination of the above is possible and likely. But can you differentiate between each? If you have a good time or a miserable time at a larp, whose fault is that? Here are some examples.

Years ago I designed and ran a western one-shot theater style larp (though we did use Nerf guns) with elements from H.P. Lovecraft, earning it the pejorative description “Cactus Cthulhu” from some players upset that the Mythos elements were (intentionally) hidden from them until mid-game. Regardless, one player playing a thief was cornered by Pinkerton agents and shot near the end of the event. Recently, this player told me that it wasn’t my fault for her character being shot. “There weren’t enough GMs in the game,” she said. She blames the staffing, or lack thereof, for her character’s demise. But I look at it differently: she played a thief. The lawmen (and woman) deduced her secret identity and moved to collect her bounty. This occurred without a GM present. The combat mechanics were understood and properly enacted and obeyed by all participants. Is it the designer’s fault for creating a character that was wanted by authorities and allowing Pinkertons to be in the game, or the GMs for not monitoring every conflict? Are the other players at fault for playing their goals to the mortal end, or is it the fallacy of the thief player herself, for being plugged with lead?

Kevin Moran after his acceptance speech

Kevin Moran after his acceptance speech at the 2006 Larpy Awards

A converse example: at my first fantasy boffer campaign as a PC, I attacked everyone in the game with an area affect fire spell: “By the sound of my voice…5 fire.” Personally I greatly enjoyed the scene, as I spent the next thirty minutes braying in blubbery shame. I spent the rest of the weekend trying to make it up to the PCs. I had a great time, but other players still resent me. They didn’t have “fun,” the false god of larps (read my article on fun here). I don’t know if attacking the other characters was against the rules, so was it the designer’s fault for not telegraphing clear restrictions against character vs. character (CvC) action? Was it the GM’s fault for not stopping me or calling a hold and ret-conning the spell? Was it the NPC’s fault (I befriended a demon in disguise, I thought he was a PC) for encouraging the power display, or was it solely my fault for deciding to go ahead with it?

Another example from the second run of Rock Band Murder Mystery at Intercon, a larp I designed with Morgan Joeck. One of the first turning points of the narrative occurs upon discovering a body. In this run, many minutes went by before anyone saw her–I paid cash to a model to role-play a dead hooker in the con hotel; phrasing that casting notice took finesse. When she was finally found, the lone witness took clever steps to hide and then dispose of the body. But the plot couldn’t really move unless the other players saw the corpse. As a GM, I pushed fiat and made up an excuse to breach the secret among the other players and keep the plot rolling. Whom would you blame for the frozen plot: the design team, who should have constructed the opening reveal better; the GMs for not tipping the scales sooner; the other players for not investigating better; or the person who found the body, who stayed true to character and did everything right to conceal the stiff?

A final anecdote: in a film noir theater larp, one character played a police officer. After the first murder, the cop called everyone into the living room and prevented anyone from leaving. The plot could not continue, the game faltered and then fell. Whose fault? The designer for creating the character, the GM for allowing him to exert his authority, the other players for going along with it, or the cop character’s puppetmaster (player) for enforcing his auth-or-i-tah?

These examples are merely thought exercises for you because, I think, the answers reveal your approach to live action role playing. Are you someone who believes that you pay good money to be entertained, and the GMs damn well better give you what you paid for, or are you a loner who makes your own joy no matter what else is going on?

I don’t believe that any larp system is foolproof. No matter how good the rules (however you define “good”), I feel that a poor GM team or malefic players can derail even the best system. So, too, can a responsive GM or passionate participants turn weak or nonexistent rules into a profound experience.

A 2006 Larpy Award winner and two presenters (including baseball player Jose Canseco)

A 2006 Larpy Award winner and two presenters (including baseball player Jose Canseco)

And of course your own input into the mix is critical. I’ve had moments of incredible joy in terrible larps, and I’ve let myself and others down in extremely well designed, well-run events (sorry to everyone that played in “The Yearbook” with me at Intercon M).

Of course each larp, each larper, is different. But I think it’s important for all of us to know which way the four winds blow that whip any larp: the designers, the GMs, the other PCs, and you.

What can you do to ensure the best circumstances for a good experience? You can’t control everything, but here are some things to think about:

  • As a player, did you read the rules and lore? Did you spend enough time on them to comprehend them, at least for your character? If not, did you ask for clarification? Do you play to make the best larp experience for yourself or for others? Do you play to win, or play to lose? Do you use any metagaming techniques to adjust or reflect on your role-playing before, during or after the larp?
  • If you are a larp designer, did you make your rules simple or complex? Clear or opaque? Did you leave room for others to modify or change your rules, either the GM staff or the players themselves?
  • If you are running a larp, do you know when and how to subtly “rescue” players from themselves or the plot and when to let them twist? Have you adequately explained the rules and mechanics? Have you made yourself available to the players? Do you pick sides and favor some PCs over others?

I hope that a few moments of reflection and constructive criticism—of yourself as well as others, externally or internally—will lead to greater knowledge of yourself, of what you enjoy in larps, where and how to get it.

In the comments below, tell us about one of your favorite or worst larp moments. Who do you think caused that to happen: the game designer, the GMs, the other players, you, or a combination? 


Check out the rest of the series: Filling Space (1), No Fun (2), and PVP and PVE Fighting in a Locked Cage (3).продвижениесайтапродвижениепрограмма для android взлома wi fiбампер для iphone 5варианты оформления договора банковского вклада предусмотренные гкslots gratis casino 770massage parlour in dubaibet casinoPay with phone creditтур на майские с киевастеп братиславская

Dec 16, 2013
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