A new challenger appears!

Shiro

Newbie
Hello everyone. I'm brand new to LARP and looking to ask some questions and connect with others. I've never done this before, so bare with me.

I've been role playing online for over 15 years, and have just recently (since May 2018) start playing tabletop RPGS online. I've always been interested in role playing and fantasy. I write fantasy novels and love character creation. I think this would be something I'd really enjoy.

However, because I've never done this before, I don't even know where to start! I've found the rule book and the help forum and have given them a glance over, but I guess my questions are this:

- When/where are the events?
- How often are they held?
- How long are events?
- Is there a way to 'observe' an event without taking an active role? (NPCing, perhaps?)
- What age group are those that attend? (I'm 30!)
- Is there a membership fee/what are the costs to attend an event? (I saw something mentioning fees)
- Are any of you in the Lisle/Naperville/Downers area?
- Are you LGBT friendly/are there other LGBT members?
- What kind of tabletops are you interested in?
- Does anyone read? Lets talk about books.
- Are there only high fantasy events, or has anyone considered alternate genres?

Thank you so much for reading, I look forward to getting in contact with you!

- Andy / Shiro
 

KyleSchmelz

Fighter
- When/where are the events?
- How often are they held?
Here is the schedule for the year. The specific location for the events is usually announced shortly before the event but they're mostly a bit west of Chicago.
- How long are events?
Events usually start Friday night and run through Sunday morning, though there's not usually much Sunday morning. Some people stay up very late, but it's not required.
- Is there a way to 'observe' an event without taking an active role? (NPCing, perhaps?)
Sorta? You can NPC to get an idea of how it works without diving in headfirst - it's a great option if you don't have everything together for a costume yet or if you're just not sure if it's for you yet - but if you're NPCing you're generally expected to take part in the game. You can definitely work with the plot team to find sort of a side-lines role to get started with for your first NPC character or two.
- What age group are those that attend? (I'm 30!)
I'm also 30! I think most players at Chicago are between 20 and 40, though there are some younger and some older.
- Is there a membership fee/what are the costs to attend an event? (I saw something mentioning fees)
I don't believe there is a membership fee. Events are $60 each as long as you preregister, NPCing is $10 if you preregister. I don't know for sure if Rob still does first-event discounts but I wouldn't be surprised.
- Are any of you in the Lisle/Naperville/Downers area?
- Are you LGBT friendly/are there other LGBT members?
I can't really help with the first question (I come in from Minnesota) but I know there are several LGBT players at Chicago and it seems to me at least as though the chapter is pretty welcoming.
- What kind of tabletops are you interested in?
Mostly D&D 5E nowadays, personally. It's been years since I've gotten into anything else.
- Are there only high fantasy events, or has anyone considered alternate genres?
As far as Alliance goes, high fantasy is all you'll find. It's built into the game. There are other games out there, though. The biggest game I know of from another genre is Dystopia Rising, which is a post-apocalypse zombie LARP.
 

Corbell

Newbie
When/where are the events?
- How often are they held?
Kyle posted the link in his response to the schedule. Our next event is this coming weekend in Sheridan (hope you can make it) the link is here for the event: https://alliancelarp.com/forum/threads/august-31st-weekend-event-preregistration-darkened-bubbles.38157/

How often are they held?
Chicago is once a month during the Spring, Summer, and Fall, however, Alliance is a national game, so you can find games across the country for just about any weekend that you can bring your Chicago PC to.


How long are events?
Typically the gates open at 6pm on Friday, with registration opening at 8pm, game on at 10pm, and with plot wrap up and site clean up being Sunday morning.

- Is there a way to 'observe' an event without taking an active role? (NPCing, perhaps?)
NPCing is always welcome :) I know I NPC'd my entire first year. The perks to NPCing is that you are getting your first taste of LARP, and your character still gets XP, so your building the character before you play the PC.

- How often are they held?
- What age group are those that attend? (I'm 30!)
ages vary, personally I'm 34.

- Is there a membership fee/what are the costs to attend an event? (I saw something mentioning fees)
If you pre-register for the event it is $60 which includes your Saturday meals. If you don't pre-register for the event it is $70 those are PC costs. If you NPC it costs $10 which includes your meals on Saturday.

- Are any of you in the Lisle/Naperville/Downers area?
I'm in Kankakee.

- Are you LGBT friendly/are there other LGBT members?
There are a few LGBT here, from what I have seen we are welcoming to everyone.

- What kind of tabletops are you interested in?
I play 4E every Sunday, but also play a homebrew game that has its own rule set. Also play Pathfinder. but my main tabletop is 4E

- Does anyone read? Lets talk about books.
Outside of LARP, it is rare to find me not with a book in my hands. Currently I'm reading allot of Urban Fantasy, but I do allot of high fantasy, and sci-fi
 

Manflesh

Artisan
- What age group are those that attend?
Lots of players are in their late 20's to mid 30's, there are also a few elder statespeople and teenagers too.
- Are any of you in the Lisle/Naperville/Downers area?
I went to college in Naperville but now live out in Oswego. A lot of my guild live close to this area. Fun fact: A few of our one day events are in Naperville and one of our secondary site options are located in Woodridge.
- Are you LGBT friendly/are there other LGBT members?
Absolutely
- What kind of tabletops are you interested in?
Mainly 5e. But I've played Pathfinder, Fantasy Flight Star Wars, Mouseguard, Poison!, Deadlands, and Inspectors in the last couple years.
 

Kitaruen

Squire
Owner
Chicago Staff
The folks above have answered well! All I will say we are a community working towards shared enjoyment of a niche hobby. Who you are, what you are, why you are does not matter. Its all about building a make believe world and an out of game community as well. Together we are LARP! New players just pay for food so 10 bucks! If its a last minute decision to come out I suggest NPCing so you have time to put together costuming for a PC, with that said we will happily loan any new PC weapons and other gear.
 

Shiro

Newbie
Hey, thanks for the feedback everyone! Unfortunately I won't be able to make it out this weekend (tight on funds/big tabletop session on Saturday) but I'll definitely look into coming to one a little down the line. How does like... rooming and sleeping work? Is it a campsite? Do I bring a tent?
 

Ragnarok

Scout
Marshal
It can vary depending on which particular site we happen to be at but most of the time there are either cabins, bunks, or both. I can't remember a single time anyone was forced into tenting, though I don't imagine anyone would stop from tenting if you so choose.
 

Shiro

Newbie
So new question: is combat... required? Are there people who are mostly there for RP?
What is the capacity for OOC conversation/tutorials/questions once the event has started?
 

Manflesh

Artisan
So new question: is combat... required? Are there people who are mostly there for RP?
What is the capacity for OOC conversation/tutorials/questions once the event has started?
Great question.

Combat is very much a focus in this system, but by no means is it solely the focus. A majority of "town mods," modules that require nearly all of the players, will involve combat of some sort. During a typical 2 day event, those heavy combat missions will traditionally pop up on Friday night and Saturday night, and sometimes during Saturday afternoons with less frequency. The chances for non-combat focused mods occur in higher rates during late Saturday morning to early afternoon. That all said, even in those combat-heavy mods, there is often a crucially needed RP element that needs to be accomplished (example, you may find yourself needing to bargain with a creature locked in a circle of power while other adventurers fight off minions all around you, or a riddle/trap needs to be solved while fighting ensues, etc.)

I would definitely stress that there is a high amount of RP that happens during a typical event. My favorite thing to do during my first year of larping was to try and talk my way out of combat and find a different solution in the smaller mods that I joined. Late nights are the perfect time to go to a storyteller and have a long completely RP-only discussion with an important NPC. One day events tend to be more combat focused, sans for the banquet in January, which is always a non-combat event.

There are some players that are not combat focused at all, but they almost all are healers. There is one player who mainly frequents Southern Michigan that plays a merchant who rarely goes on the battlefield at all. Can said players have an enjoyable weekend without combat? Absolutely. That said, those players will experience a handful of combat missions that will absorb the entire town, and as such, create some downtime for them if they don't want to be on that battlefield. In general, this game does a great job catering to players that want to focus on the combat, as well as those who want to focus on the role play.

To answer your other question, there are a ton of opportunities for downtime discussions during the day on Saturday of a typical 2-day weekend. It is not uncommon for players to teach each other new skills or combat spare after a meal. Even in combat, don't hesitate to ask a question if you're confused. Players and staff on the field will try to help you the best they can (it's easier for them to do so in smaller mods, rather than town mods.)

Hopefully that helps. Please ask further questions, if you need clarifications.
 

Muir

Fighter
Everyone else seems to have chimed in on the logistic parts, but I can't help a reply here. :)

- What kind of tabletops are you interested in?
I play Pathfinder, and have been an off and on GM for Shadowrun for 20+ years now. Currently really excited for a game I supported through Kickstarter called Hard Wired Island, which is retrofuturistic cyberpunk, but with more modern concern towards the social aspects of the genre that didn't age well.

- Does anyone read? Lets talk about books.
Constantly, mostly science fiction and fantasy as one would expect. Currently going through Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastards series, which is all about the life and times of thieves in a high-fantasy post-post-apocalyptic world. It's clever, witty, and quite entertaining. Next up after that is Naomi Novik's Spinning Silver.

- Are there only high fantasy events, or has anyone considered alternate genres?
Alliance only really does high fantasy in the D&D mold. I'd love to see us pick up a few alternatives, like say a 7th Sea style magic-and-black-powder setting, but I don't think it likely under the Alliance banner. The mechanics don't take well to being made generic.
 

Darkcrescent

Knight
Chicago Staff
Marshal
Naomi Novik's Spinning Silver.
Taking me almost a year to get through it, not because its bad, I just need to be in the mood. Love it so far though. Uprooted is a great read by her as well.
 

Muir

Fighter
Uprooted is a favorite of mine. Her prose can be a bit dense, but it's quite beautiful.
 
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