Players should note that what follows is a rough guideline only. Curious Pastimes is committed to running a campaign that responds to the actions of its players. If vital information or important victories are won early because of player ingenuity, or important secrets remain concealed through carelessness or sheer bad luck, then so be it. Because of this, actions at one event can influence what transpires at subsequent events critically, and much of what follows is subject to change.
Event Dates and Details
Liberation Paccar Scout Camp
2nd - 6th May. Price (Adults): £60-£65
Catering Wagons/Self Catering.Bar Toilets & Showers
Arrival from 12 noon Thursday 2nd May or Friday 3rd May. Depart by 7pm Monday 6th May.
Valdryhamr (Wolf’s Lair) Bispham Hall Scout Camp
14th-16th June. Price (Adults): £50-£55
Catering Wagons/Self Catering. Bar Toilets & Showers
Mixed Role-playing/Combat event
Arrival from 12 noon Friday 14th June. Depart by 6pm Sunday 16th June
Court of Crimson and Gold Sherratts Wood Scout Camp
12th- 14th July. Price (Adults): £50-£55
Catering Wagons/Self Catering Bar Toilets & Showers
Mixed Role-playing/Combat event
Arrival from 12 noon Friday 12th July. Depart by 6pm Sunday 14th July
Renewal Paccar Scout Camp
22nd -26th August Price (Adults): £65-£75
Catering Wagons/Self Catering Bar Toilets & Showers
Mixed Role-playing/Combat event
Arrival from 12 noon Thursday 22nd August or Friday 23rd August. Depart by 7pm Monday 26th August
First and foremost, read the manual. This is essential for every player. In fact; read it twice.
Second, as soon as you get access, have a read through the Games Mechanics and Monstering sections of these boards. A lot of questions you may have will be found here. When you get into the forum, at the top will be a drop-down box, “Show Topics”. Choose “All” to see all the posts in this, or any, forum.
Make sure you read the “New to the boards?” topic in the forum before posting. Always good to know the rules of posting.
Remember: Time In is saved for events. Things that happen on these boards aren’t really classed as “things that have happened”. If you want to introduce your character to people, that’s ideally done at the events. Try not to take the things you learn on the boards fully into character.
There is a Newbie Brief at the events. Make sure you attend it, as it is invaluable to getting started. It can be a little overwhelming, but if you’ve done research before the actual event (and by reading this, I assume you have), then it’ll be extremely helpful. You can ask any questions you may initially have there. It is held 2 hours before time in at the first event of the year and Renewal.
Bear in mind, everyone was new to LRP at one point or another, and so the vast majority of people will be happy to help you. If you have something you want to know, either in-character or out-of-character, just find someone and ask. If they don’t know, or are too busy, they will more than likely put you on to someone who can help.
Make sure you know where to get water from. There will generally be taps local to your camp, which will become extremely useful should the weather turn out hot and you find yourself dehydrated. Heatstroke isn’t fun.
Find the traders. This is where you will find food. It’s also where you will find the tavern and quite often security, paramedics and GOD will be based close by. Everything a LARPer needs.
You should always remember where you pitched your tent. It will most likely be dark when you go to bed, so a pocket torch you can carry out of sight is really useful, but knowing how to get back to your tent even when it gets dark is even better.
Finally for this section, remember that LARPing is supposed to be a fun event. So, make sure you have fun, and don’t take this world too seriously.
FOIP = Find Out In Play.
This means we can’t / won’t tell you on the boards/in discussion. Talk to us at the event, in character.
OOC = Out-Of-Character
People with their fingers in the air are OOC. They may have been killed and are going to get a new character, they may be returning from Monstering. They aren’t there, and if you try to interact with them IC, you will get strange looks. In terms of OOC on the forums, it means the players themselves are talking, not their characters.
IC = In-Character
You are your character. You are no longer the person you were on the journey to the event. You are the person you created to live in this world. Do not mix OOC knowledge with IC knowledge, i.e., if you hear something before the event, don’t use that knowledge with your character, who will not have learnt it in play.
Rule 7 = Don’t Take The Piss
You possibly will hear references to “The 15/16 Rules of LARP”. These are only an Out Of Character humorous list of things that most players hate. The most frequently quoted rule is Rule 7 : Don’t take the Piss. (In some players view this summarizes the entire list). The meaning is self-explanatory, really.
Look at the factions page for the descriptions of the factions. See which best suits you. When you first start, you can choose to be a Mercenary, which basically just means you have no faction. Spend your time wandering around the camps that interest you, getting to know people, seeing if you think you can settle there. Once you have made up your mind, speak to the head of the faction and ask if you can join them, tell them what you can do, and they will try to find an appropriate group for you to join.
Don’t listen to people who say their faction is the best to join. Almost everyone will say that. Decide yourself. You may be in a faction for two years, and then decide to join another and have more fun there than you did before. Everyone’s faction is the best. General Role-Play
The game is run by the game team and the refs. These can be identified by either the Ref ID Card that they carry, or by the Tabards that they wear. Usually white with a large R on them. If a ref tells you to do something, do it. Refs are always right at the time they make a judgment. If you think a judgment is unfair, afterwards you can escalate the issue via your faction to the game team. Do not argue at the time. You will not win.
You are IC at “time in” until “time out” (10am till 2am) You may only declare yourself out of character if a ref has specified that you can go out of character, and you should know the ref?s name. Declaring yourself OOC is cheating. Carrying toilet role does not make you immune to being killed either. If you absolutely MUST go out of character, change back into normal clothes and then do what you must. Putting your finger in the air to avoid trouble is cheating.
If someone shouts at you in a very angry tone of voice, don’t take it personally. Unless you have done something very stupid, it will be their character having a go at your character. Its just role-play. If you do think it was personal, try to have a quiet word with them later. It’s never good to let things simmer.
Don’t wear revealing clothes unless you are sure you can take the comments / suggestions in-character. This means all players of all genders!
If you want to socialize, go to the tavern. It’s IC, so you will be able to get a feel for who people are, what faction they are from, etc. But the drinks are bought with real life money, not IC money. Same with the food from the vans and items in the trader’s tents.
The Tavern is designed for In Character interaction. The player-managers are happy for people to use the premises just for Role Play – do not feel that you have to buy drinks to meet there. While bringing your own alcohol would be frowned on (see Rule 7), players are welcome to eat food, meet, gather intelligence, etc. Don’t neglect to ask the bar staff about Life, the Universe and current intelligence. They are all players. You are also welcome to go and volunteer for a stint behind the bar – many players find this a good way of getting to understand some of the players and Factions.
Playing a fighter is a good way to get into the rules and style of play, but it’s not an excuse not to learn the spell effects. Knowing how to fall down when someone hits you with a weapon is good. But you also need to know what to do if someone casts Enthral on you. If you don’t know exactly what to do, ask someone. If it’s in the middle of a battle, chances are you were hit by a knockdown style spell, or a fumble spell. So, for the first few times, just fall over, and ask later. And remember, no one expects you to be perfect right away. It takes time, and they will be more patient if they know you’re new.
Volunteer for any tasks going – for example, volunteer yourself out as a bodyguard for people who need to leave the camp. That way you can learn the layout of the area you are in, and get to meet others in different factions. If you’re not a fighter, but a spell caster, there will generally be some way in which you can help, whether by healing the injured, striking enemies from afar, or making them flee for their lives. The main thing is set yourself a task and try and achieve it.
When you design your first character, assume that it won’t last until the end of the event, and have a backup character just in case. If your first character lasts for 3 years, excellent. But if it dies, shrug it off and start something different. You will be able to get a feel for what you enjoy. You may enjoy a spell caster more than a fighter, or even a totally non-combat character.
People holding their finger up in the air are out-of-character. This means you should totally ignore them. It doesn’t matter if it’s a large band of baddies with their fingers in the air. They are not there. Don’t react to them, don’t decide that road is too risky and walk the other way. Act as if they aren’t there. Reacting to someone who has their finger in the air is cheating.
With weapons, look at a few websites, see what sort of weapons you like the look of, but don’t buy anything yet. Wait until you get to the event, and are able to feel what they are like. You may see an excellent looking sword, but when it arrives, it just doesn’t feel right. Go to a trader’s tent, have a few practice swings with different weapons, see what you like.
Don’t thrust / stab your weapons. This is very dangerous. Not only may this cause them to get damaged, and make them unsafe to use in combat, but thrusting is dangerous as the weapon core could cause injury applied end on, as it cannot be pulled.
Pull your blows. For those at the back, I repeat. Pull your blows. When in the heat of combat, it’s easy to let the adrenaline get to you, and pound into your opponent. But your opponent won’t be happy. If you don’t know how to pull your blows, get someone in your faction to explain.
No drum-rolls. This is when you hit someone, then pull your weapon back an inch or two and hit them again, repeating it. To make a blow count, you will need to pull the weapon back far enough for you to be able to swing it again with force behind the strike. But remember; pull your blows.
If you’re using a weapon of any kind, respect the other players and put the safety considerations first. Yes, a 7′ polearm is really cool, but it also hurts like hell if you hit someone and don’t know how to control it. If you’re not sure you can handle a weapon at all, go with a magic user or a non-combatant as your first character, this will give you time to learn how to use a weapon, you can always retire a character and start a new one with the beatstick of your choice.
If a chance becomes available to Monster, take it. You will get to play a character that is expendable, and will get to experience a different aspect of role-playing. Just stick to the stats the refs give you, don’t make them up.
If you are bored in camp, find someone who might be willing to spar with you. You will find the extra practice fun, and it’ll help with interacting with members of your faction, and good for role-play.
When casting a spell in battle, it’s always helpful to add a short description after the spell vocals. “By the power of the Spirits I command thee to cower and fear me. The guy with the big red shield, I mean you !” This avoids confusion as to who the target was, and reduces the number of spells that get accidently ignored.
If you want to use offensive magic, you need to be LOUD. In the middle of a battle there is a lot of noise and if you’re trying to throw a Spirit Bolt at someone, they need to hear you.
If you get hit by a spell that knocks you over, then fall over. Don’t stumble back a few steps then get back into the fight. Okay, there are some points when you aren’t able to fall over, like if you’re backed into a tent and don’t want to impale yourself on a peg. In this case, just fall to the floor as safely as you can, but make sure you’re on the floor.
If you get Feared, you have to run away in terror for 30 seconds. This doesn’t mean run out of the faction’s camp area, wait outside patiently for 20 seconds, then come back. You have just experienced the most terrifying thing you can imagine, and wish to put as much distance between you and the spell caster as you can, for 30 seconds. Once those 30 seconds are up, you turn around and head back, although probably not as fast as you ran away. If you are unable to run away for any reasons, then cowering and screaming for 30 seconds, unable to do anything else, is perfectly acceptable.
Strength. You have been hit with so much force that you have been knocked over physically. You may have a shield, so you don’t take damage, but that’s still a lot of forward momentum hitting it, and it’s enough to force you off your feet. So if you get hit with Strength, drop to the ground. Don’t just stand there and carry on as if nothing happened.
Watch your step. If someone dies, they won’t appreciate you stepping on their nose, fingers, etc. Also, there may be roots or things on the floors that will cause you to lose your footing, which may be all too easy to ignore when fighting.
Kids role-play too. And they are generally good. But don’t always pull their blows. If a kid hits you, then that counts as a hit. Don’t ignore it just because they’re young and don’t really count. They do. So, take your hits, and try to avoid getting hit anywhere sensitive.
White trainers are a definite no. Black trainers are frowned upon as they look too modern and will detract from the whole immersion aspect of LRP. Try to get boots. Doesn’t matter too much what type, as long as they don’t look too modern. Army surplus stores are the most popular starting places.
Jeans are also frowned upon as being too modern. If they are going to be hidden beneath armour, it’s not so much of a problem. But try wearing something plain, like jogging bottoms, or plain combats.
Browse charity shops. You’ll be surprised at the bargains you can find in them. Some nice LRP gear has been known to turn up in charity shops from time to time. Even some not-so-nice LRP gear will do to get you started. Failing that, a plain bed sheet sewn up into a robe will make a good start, at least you’ll be able to see what other people at the events have achieved, and get some ideas there. Also browse the galleries, so you can see what others have done before you get to the event.