In Character Onboarding for Chronicle Larps

February 15, 2021

Nobody knows what’s going to happen night-to-night in a chronicle larp, not even the storytellers. We try to guess, and we’re generally pretty good at it. But how do you prepare a new player for their very first game of anything goes? You can’t download your experience with a rule system, setting, and playerbase into someone’s head. Hell, most of the time people show up because they want to play with their friends, and if they’ve managed to pick up a fraction of setting or system knowledge ahead of time, you’re lucky. The only thing you can depend on is that a player will be at game, by the very definition of player. So, let’s do the obvious thing. To teach players how to understand a game that can’t be digested in one sitting, let’s teach them during the game. Ideally, we want to do it fast enough that they can play without being distracted by uncertainty. And to do it well, we have to do it intentionally.

Read more …

Tags: chronicle larps onboarding new players werewolf: the apocalypse vampire: the masquerade by night studios mind's eye theater larp

Trust in Vampire: the Masquerade Chronicle LARPs Part 1: Storytellers

August 9, 2020

Once upon a time, shortly after I’d become the primary V:tM storyteller for my local larp, a friend of mine asked me, “What would you do if you could get away with being unfair to someone?”

My response came easily, “That’s not a hypothetical question,” I said, “I could get away with being unfair to someone. I could get away with it right now. In fact, one of my more serious concerns as a storyteller is that I’ll accidentally be unfair and people will just let me get away with it instead of pointing the problem out so I can try to fix it.”

Read more …

Tags: vampire: the masquerade by night studios mind's eye theater larp CvC trust

Escalation in BNS Vampire: the Masquerade

June 28, 2020

There’s a BNS mechanics discussion that I love above all others. It’s the one that goes “That is a core problem, isn’t it? Social solutions not sticking.” and “Social solutions aren’t allowed to stick.” What does ‘stick’ mean here? For that matter, what does “allowed” mean here? The general hypothesis is this: there are mechanical reasons social conflicts escalate to killboxes. There’s plenty to say about human reasons for that escalation, and human costs too, but the mechanics– I want to talk about those. Changing people is hard. Changing mechanics? Easy. What if we could avoid some of that human cost paid in OOC misery with just a bit more awareness of where things get sticky?

Read more …

Tags: vampire: the masquerade by night studios mind's eye theater larp CvC