Do I want to PC or NPC?

You've decided that you are ready to come to your first LARP event. Now you have to decide how you want to play. You can play as either a Player Character (PC) or an Non-Player Character (NPC).

As a PC, you get to play the hero (or villain) of your creation. Your Player Character will have a backstory that you write, act as you feel they should, earn experience from being played and learn skills of your choosing .

Playing an NPC allows you to play as anything and everything in the game world except the Player characters. You will be anything from a Peasant to a piece of a 20 foot Dragon held by several NPC's. You will help to make the world that the PCs have their adventure in, playing their truest allies and greatest enemies.

Both options allow for you to enjoy the game in their own way. When you are considering weather to NPC or PC you should consider some of the following factors:

The financial investment required to NPC is significantly less than that of PCing. While you can put together a costume of your PC on a budget, a costume and weapons can become quite an expense. Memberships, however, can affect your expense as a PC. Reach out to your local chapter for the current membership promotions. NPCs have everything they need to play the game provided for them by the Chapter at which they play. NPCs usually pay much lower (Possibly even free) event costs.

Learning the rules
Playing as NPC allows you to learn the rules from a variety of different roles and experience many unique aspects of the game. Starting as an NPC is a great way to explore and understand the rules system. Starting as a PC lets you start off by getting thrown into a fully immersive fantasy with its own rich systems of magic, combat and crafting. You get to fully experience the wonder of being a new adventurer.

If all of your friends are PCing, you might want to join the adventure with them. This is a completely natural feeling and many LARPers often make this decision based on what their friends are doing. That said, it's also occasionally fun to antagonize them by playing "on the other side."

Character development and control
When you PC, you get to control how your character reacts to others as well as situations presented in-game. If you're NPCing, you have much less control over what your character does in most games, NPCs act as directed by the plot team.

In Game Rewards
Player Characters earn experience for each game day that they play their characters at an Alliance event. Their wealth is whatever it is that they are able to earn in-game as that character. An NPC will be compensated for their efforts specific to the chapter at which they NPCed. This is often done through awarding Goblin Stamps which are later redeemed for in-game wealth or experience blankets. Memberships can also affect months which you are blanketed for experience. Contact your local chapter for membership blanket details.

It's worth noting that many games allow you to split your time. In other words, you could PC for most of the event, but NPC during a specific shift. Some games make NPC shifts mandatory, so be prepared to NPC.