Grand LARP 2016: Collision at Corazon

About a month ago, the Luminary Roleplay Society hosted the first Grand LARP, which we hope will become an annual tradition.  We wanted to do something a little larger-scale than our standard four hour LARPs, and took some inspiration from various large LARP events we had heard of or played in.   The result was a 3-day LARP that had 3 GMs and 21 players.  We held the game at a cabin near Lake Tahoe, for an extra-immersive experience.

Collision at Corazon was a science fiction epic involving a collision between two rival warships, a monastic space station who rescued the survivors, a rogue merchant ship that happened to arrive at the same time, and the mysterious crystalline planet that held the key to all their fates.  Over the course of the game, it became clear that only one of the ships, or the station itself, was going to survive past the third day, and the plot revolved around each faction trying to make sure it managed control the surviving craft, while exploring the galaxy-altering secrets hidden on the crystal below.  There followed a succession of revelations, intrigues, betrayals, back-room deals, and a lot of soul-searching.  It would be too hard to recount all the amazing scenes and plots that our fantastic players created, but suffice it to say that, at the end, the cyberpunk-inspired Coalition of Outer Worlds fixed their ship, thwarted an attempt by the other faction to hijack it, and nearly everyone flew to the safety (?) of Coalition space, leaving a few stragglers behind.

Grand LARP was a massive undertaking.  Matt, Amanda, and I were the writers and GMs, and we worked on the game on and off for a year, writing hundreds of pages of character sheets and setting documents.  Meanwhile Acata and Aaron heroically took care of all the logistics necessary to get two dozen people up to the mountains, fed for three days, etc., which was a great relief to the GM team!  It was worth it, though.  The players all reported that they had a great time, and we’re already excitedly planning the next one.

One of the things that was very special about Grand LARP was that the cast of characters really were an ensemble of 21 people of equal importance.  Losing even one character would have left a noticeable hole in the plots and themes of the game (to say nothing of the mechanical balance).  As we left for the mountains before the event, the GMs worriedly hoped that no one would suddenly come down sick or be called away on a work emergency, because we literally had no way to compensate for their loss.  Even a player who didn’t really emotionally invest in their character or what was going on would have damaged the game.  But everyone made it, and all of our wonderful players brought so much to their characters and the game as a whole, thoroughly exploring everything we had written into the game and even showed us things that we hadn’t realized that were there. Each of them added pieces of themselves, developing their characters far beyond the initial sheets, making the LARP richer and more wonderful than we had imagined.  We feel very lucky to have such a large group of dedicated, passionate roleplayers to draw on for our games, and we’re looking forward to seeing all of them at future LRS events.

Here’s some pictures of the game:

-Sarah, Historian Luminant

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