L is for L.A.R.P.ing

L.A.R.P.ing, not for the weak

Here we come, walkin' down the street. Image from http://www.larplist.com/Awards.php

Here we come, walkin’ down the street. Image from http://www.larplist.com/Awards.php

L.A.R.P. is the acronym for Live Action Role-Playing. It takes your regular role-play gaming and adds crafts, theater, and imaginary settings. This system gives the participants the chance to act out their character’s role in a small group or large scale production.

More than just swords and dragons

Often tied to Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) coming out of the 1970’s, L.A.R.P.’s are flexible in the scenarios and playing styles.  The fictionalized scenarios can range from Steampunk story lines, to Lord of the Rings, to a zombie apocalypses. The Society for Creative Anachronism is an international living history organization dedicated to recreating the Middle Ages, and can loosely be thought of as a L.A.R.P. organization.

Rules vary by the group or organization. Some groups have published their rules to be followed. Others just mandate the form of weapons and how they are to be used. While, yet others act under the tenant of portraying their character as appropriate to the scenario.

Play is refereed by game master(s) or arrangers that drive the scenario’s goals, and more mundanely book the venue, advertise the event, and manage the finances. Because they know the overall goal, the game masters manage the player characters acting out self-created roles or ones developed by the game masters.

Geeks come to the mainstream

Over the years, the media has picked up L.A.R.P. in television shows. However, we first heard news stories of how D&D was filled with occultism, satanism, and escapism. Over the years, these notions have been proven wrong. Now, we see L.A.R.P.s occasionally on the internet and television in a growing acceptance of geek culture. One of the best known geeky L.A.R.P.-minded personalities in my book is Felicia Day. She has her own internet show called The Guild, and plays a limited character, Charlie, on Supernatural.

Only Felicia Day can mix Star Trek and Middle Age L.A.R.P.ing. Image from http://io9.com/5978853/on-supernatural-felicia-day-makes-everything-ok

Only Felicia Day can mix Star Trek and Middle Age L.A.R.P.ing. Image from http://io9.com/5978853/on-supernatural-felicia-day-makes-everything-o

Ah, the awesomeness of Felicia Day… For more on beginning L.A.R.P.ing

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H is for Halo….Maybe?

Ok, as I was brainstorming ideas for my list, I came up with Halo for “H.” It seemed like a good idea at the time. I, however, am not a gamer. I am surrounded by gamers who will be giving me crap after they read this post. I never had console games in my house and love it when I hit a friend’s house with Lego anything. I did play World of Warcraft for a few years, but stopped when I realized that eight hours of grinding could be spent with real live people.

Aww, cosplayers. Image from http://hdw.eweb4.com/out/628023.html

Aww, cosplayers. Image from http://hdw.eweb4.com/out/628023.html

And this photo reminds of a favorite YouTube video.

Wow, serious stream of consciousness/Ooo shiny kicked in.

Halo. I am supposed to be writing about Halo. I know that the franchise originally started as a PC game, and then Microsoft took it over to the 360 for console gaming. The lead character is called Master Chief. The franchise has turned out 7 video games,  book adaptations, graphic novels, comics, a stalled movie, and an anime series.

But it has now become part of the culture and comic relief  as done by Rooster Teeth’s Red vs Blue in the machinima style.

What does this say about Halo? If anything is around long enough and is kind of popular, it will be taken up and reconstituted into a new form. Heck, it has its own pedia site.