Project: - Social Things -

Mingling in process

Larping is just a game

It is easy to get excited about the disruptive potential larp has for cultural experimentation. The strong focus on serious topics put Nordic Larp in the spotlight as a tool for exploring alternative mindsets and initiating social change around themes such as homelessness, politics, feminism, gender, global warming… I was quick to envision the possibilities of live action role playing for speculative design. Adam James said, as I have also come across during my secondary research, and as is also said of design, “I believe Larp can change the world.” In her blog Aeon, Alexa Clay, recommends the use of… More

I participated in a roleplay!

Thoughts on my participation in The Beholder Controller by Adam James and Common or Garden by Jamie Harper.   To be effective, larps need their players to agree on the characteristics and rules of world they will play in, also called the magic circle. As established previously, collaboration is a major corner stone of Nordic Larp practice. As a designer, I am inspired by the methodology used to warm up creative thinking in their participants during workshops. Our imaginations work differently and participating in games brings to light interesting processes to slowly engage players in character and world creation. Larps… More

Fictional experiences are also real

Johanna Koljonen is a writer, radio and TV host from Finland. She has researched, written for, about and through Larping and is a popular lecturer on the subject. This Introduction to Nordic Larp from the Nordic Larp Talks Stockholm 2010 is an overview of what is Live Action Role Playing can be, where it came from and how to create one.     During this talk on Nordic Larp (2011) she starts by relating her experience in a larp called Ground Zero (1998) designed by Jami Jokinen and Jori Virtanen. The game, who took place in Turku, Finland,… More

Nordic Larp

This is the neo-tribe I am particularly interested in. Live action role playing being a diverse ecosystem of styles and approaches, as you may now have noticed, I needed to narrow down my focus. Nordic larp is more of a school of gameplay rather than a style. It distinguishes itself from other forms through its intentions and is said to want to transcend entertainment and elevate the medium to the rank of art. More

Mapping Larp

The fusion of local heritage, national cultural interest and the effects of globalisation has led to the differentiation of a live action role playing tradition unique to each country. Explaining Larp and effectively demonstrating its diversity is a daunting task. But, as the subject of my research is interested in a specific style of roleplaying I will do my best to situate it amongst the other styles, as I see it. Larps evolve over time and are as diverse as there are games and rules. All these styles are equally valid and their practice depends on personal taste only. More

What is Live Action Role Playing (LARP)

Live Action Role Playing (LARP) most commonly referred to as the noun ‘Larp’ is a diverse medium anchored in the performing arts and gaming cultures. The practice involves physically embodying a character within a crafted environment for a determined time-period, after having agreed with fellow players on a set of rules and background stories. Games can be made for as few as two players to as many as hundreds and span from a handful of hours to a few days, or even multiple games spread like chapters over months. The most well-known larps tend to borrow their environments from literature… More

Is Larp a neo-tribe?

Maffesoli invokes analogies with the ritual in the defining of the neo-tribe. In jeux de Masques (1988), he identifies a shift in the structure of society from a mechanical model, where individuals were identified within rationalised classes, to an organic structure, where mass society’s personas, no longer bound by identity but by changing affections, assemble and disassemble for ritual gatherings. These dynamic groups are what he calls neo-tribes, a non-hierarchical group of individuals that punctually lose their ‘self’ in an emotional collective. Larping might be considered a production of that shift. It is both an entertaining hobby and a serious… More