Larp Question Tuesday: Immersion


im·mer·sion: (noun) deep mental involvement.

What has been your most immersive moment in-game? Something that made you cry/laugh/rage completely in-character?


Honestly, my most immersive moments are usually private ones:

- Hunt-stalking an OOG deer with IG archery stuff with Scarn
- Alyssa and Tetsu together out in the woods, Alyssa being super upset and angry and Tetsu being there to hold onto her wrath and sadness
- Alyssa and Irina holding hands before an epic RP encounter.
- Being chased into the woods by a Shadow Hunter, and doing what elves do best: disappear
- Fighting as the BBG out in Crossroads. Evil characters have some intense immersion.



That's easy for me. This was during the Valley of the Ghosts campaign, maybe...two years ago? At Camp Sheppard, not our standard site. We experienced "ghosts," which were really "imprints" of what had happened 500 years prior.

Most of the time, the ghosts were just people who we talked to, learned about, interacted with. Every once in awhile, a bell would sound, and they'd go berserk and try to maul our faces. So that was a thing.

But late Saturday night, we got to watch them being horribly, horribly killed, in the most terrible way. We watched them cry, scream and beg for mercy against, to us, an invisible threat, like watching a recording. And we were helpless to do anything about it, know...already happened. We were watching the death that they'd suffered, that left the imprints that existed today.

And the NPCs roleplayed it terribly. Zeth was bawling. It was a lot of emotional turmoil that he kept churning through the rest of that campaign. Obliterating never felt so good.


My moments are always pc to pc interactions when I am discussing the mechanics of what is going on and the options.

Joe S.
My most immersive moment of all time was my very first PC event- specifically two props.
The first: a bowl of copper coins, which were donations to the mayor I think? I don't recall.
"Oh cool, someone bought all these coins for this prop!"
*5 seconds later after someone hands me some loot*


The second thing was a sign in the tavern, made and hung by a PC.
"Are you interested in skullduggery, schemes, unscrupulous behavior and taking other people's property without their permission? JOIN THE THIEVES GUILD! Please see Sheriff Drusil for more information."
Seems legit.


I've probably felt more immersive moments as an NPC than as a PC, which might be weird... I guess because when I'm an NPC I feel like I'm a part of the world and try to put on a performance or something, whereas when I PC I'm too self-conscious to show much emotion. Anyway.

Last year there was a Chicago event where PCs had to rescue my character and her husband the master bard from a manticore and a bunch of ogres. They broke me out of my cage, and we went out to find the manticore. We could just barely hear the rest of the NPCs shouting way off in the distance somewhere and headed in that direction.

We found my husband (played by my OOG husband, by the way) in a Circle of Power, being tortured to death by the manticore. Even though I was on the plot team, I'd read the script and was 100% expecting to see it, in that moment I completely lost it. And I mean I *lost* it--I totally fell apart, none of this 'cried a single manly tear' type stuff. I was sobbing so hard I couldn't breathe, and washed away every bit of my Dryad makeup in about two minutes, because as far as I was concerned my husband was being tortured and there was nothing I could do. I can just remember being on my hands and knees in front of the circle; my husband was lying in the dirt trying to sing something to comfort me but could barely get the words out; and the whole time the manticore was just screaming about how much we'd suffer for keeping him imprisoned.

(...Luckily the PCs eventually rescued us, and now the characters are basically the same obnoxiously cute couple we are in real life.)


Kalindra, reminds me of when my OOG wife was crying over my IG dead body. It's powerful, powerful, stuff when you have that much bleed-over because you're out of game in a relationship, and IG as well. If I wasn't IG dead, it'd be my most immersive moment. As is, I honestly don't know now. I have so many immersive experiences that it has become impossible to pick just one out now. @__@


I don't think it was my first, but it's my favorite that sticks out. I was playing my Rabbitkin in SoMN (under the then plot team) and had acquired a sacrifice item in trade for a gift of life scroll (okay they stole the gift of life scroll and felt bad when they got caught, basically a trade) Two events later one of the Rabbit's good friends (a Female Gypsy) died and was in the Resurrection circle. Beating the majority of the town back I started a resurrection and about a minute into it the player that played the big 'head of the family' type comes into the circle with me and just starts to silently steam. After another eight minutes of story telling/talking at the spirit, all the while I can hear this player plotting my punishment/demise/punishments ending in demise about a foot behind me when the time comes to pop the sacrifice and dissipate right in front of him.

The look on his face and his reaction was one of the most genuine 'Did not expect that' response I've ever seen and too this day the two characters have a very unique relationship because of it.

As an aside the biggest immersion I've ever seen, at least in my point of view was in the second or third SoMN event. An extremely well liked character 10%, doing something ridiculously dangerous (basically taking 2 people on an 8 man mod which turned the simple mechanic into a massive dangerous under taking). A number of players mourning her loss got to the point of actual despair for a few minutes. Totally, "End of the line, we blew and are doomed" despair I've never been able to recreate with any world breaking plot line ever, and it all happened from a entry mod just meant to introduce a crunchy to be used later ^.^


One of my earliest events. Three dark elves, my black leopard Sarr, and two high orcs walking down the road in middle of the pitch black woods. Someone starts coming up the road the other way we expect it's time to get ambushed. The two orcs grin and start loudly bickering about why they're all alone on this path while the rest of us take a step off the road and just disappear.

I miss that character sometimes. For all that I'm a big dude, I got away with way too much hiding in plain sight.


I was NPCing and it was supposed to be a five minute silly encounter that turned into a roomful of crying people.

Elves in NH were cursed to be unable to bear children, but the spirits of those unborn elves were still being created. A couple of elven elders came into town, looking for help because one had attached itself to them... something about beginnings and endings, I suppose.

The PCs were supposed to just put this container against me and hit me, and I'd disappear into the box to help make a thing to defeat the undead BBG of the weekend (which, ironically, I was also playing.)

The PCs decided to talk me into getting in the box, and the first thing they did was ask my name. "I don't get one until I'm born," was my response. They tell me to choose one, and I refuse, repeating that I don't get one until I'm born, because no one will know what I'll be until then. Fifteen minutes later, the woes of the Deadlands had been explained to me, their fighting to fix the lands and rid them of the overwhelming amount of necromancy, the fighting to undo the curses that were plaguing the races... and all the while, they're trying to figure out the most opportune way to ask this spirit that's only the potential of a life to give up all it could be. One woman said she'd do all she could to call me to her, to give me a chance to be born. She would give me a life, and a name.

I agreed, and without a dry eye in the room, let the box overtake me. OOG, I left the building, stumbled out to the parking lot, sat beside my car and bawled my eyes out.

Months later, I check my email while I'm at work, and I get a forward of a writeup. That same elven woman has been given the ability to have a child, and in the vision, it's described that a spirit has been so intently looking for her that it was chosen. I told the kids I was nannying for to finish up homework and then they could go into the playroom, walked to the bathroom, and cried my eyes out a second time.

"It'll be quick and easy, just paint your face white." Ha.
After several years I have a top 3 and I'm going to denote them by emotion:

Anger: I forgot his characters name but Eric Hamilton Seneschal to Blythedale at the time Sheriff Lornlyn Darque is actually Jonathan Dragonheart in disguise. Bryan talks to Jonathan about Ex Duke Alaric and learns how much bitterness and hatred Jonothan has for his cousin for sullying the families honour.

Sadness: Tournament weekend, The One comes out to confront Duke Frost for the first time Dame Dara had died. His Grace played by the indomitable Scott Kondrk breaks down crying by the tree that was near monster camp when we were in Tannersville. Naturally everyone rushes him but Jonothan being very protective of his cousin by ritual backs everyone off so that he can regain his composure before addressing the town. Jonothan approaches carefully to make sure he is ok and puts his hand on Frost's shoulder. I think Scott was actually crying which got me actually crying and Frost gets up and we just hug it out still crying til we both have to regain our composure and address the town. I think Jonathan truly finally realized Frost was now his family that day.

Joy: Not many people know but the Ex Baron Kelial left Blythedale in a lurch when he retired. He took a portion of Blythedales military to go on an expedition. He named both Jonothan and Danielstar as Knights regent, even though at the time we were only squires, with strong recommendation we be lorded then knighted...Seriously Kelial Seriously??? A council convened between all the nobles and the Duke to discuss the matter. Both I and Kelial were brought forth before Duke Aramis and his council. After a long time sitting outside the tavern and discussing what roles we would play if it went to one or the other they call us in. They got is in, Duke Aramis discussed how hard it was to make a decision, I got named Baron and right after I was sworn in as Baron I told Danielstar to take a knee for him to become First Knight. I then named Squire Xavier Kimbal (Prof X) my Seneschal. I so miss that team!


I have been trying to write up my most immersive moment for about twenty minutes but every time I try to write it up I feel like I've left out something important or cheapened it in some way. Let me just say this: the feelings expressed by all of my character's friends and family during that one hour scene was so intense that as I stumbled out of the Circle for the final time I went into the darkness surrounding the ritual site and dry heaved while the rivers of tears from the ceremony dried on my face. A good friend came over to me OOG to make sure I was okay. I had to just lay there in all of my armor for fifteen minutes to collect myself.

It was incredible.

Edit: I was reminded of a Facebook expose I did on Cael's death and if anyone is really bored, you can read it here:
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Oh, man. I have a few:

1. V, being hung from the ceiling for 1-2 hours (supported entirely by my own body weight) and tortured as her initiation into what would eventually become her weird dream-realm cenobite character path. There were a lot of things in V's backstory I never expected to come onstage, but Dave Van Ness found all of them and squashed them all into one gruesome encounter.
2. Jovunn's last event tied up a lot - and I mean, a lot - of her personal plotlines, including one I never expected to be touched IG: her brother, and what she did to him. But damn, when I saw Dom Ailioto standing on the deck as a ghost, I knew exactly who he was. His forgiveness, and his telling Jovunn she'd be able to see color in the hero's graveyard was the most heartbreaking thing ever, and I cried like a stupid baby. It was a beautiful moment, and I will love Dom and HQ's plot staff forever for topping off such a hard, sad event with that.
3. Old Crossroads. Big ritual to stop the Darkman. Darkman punches the ritual in the mouth and drops nearly the whole town. There were at least 15 resurrections, and the terror of watching the PCs drop one by one was abjectly terrifying.


The most intense, immersive moment, was my second or third game. The PC's were walking into what we knew to be an enemy training ground. I believe we even knew that they were training against "doubles" of some of us in order to try and take our stronger scholars and fighters. It was a pretty brutal fight, and Amory went down fairly early. Unfortunately, she didn't get picked back up in time, and I went to resurrect. At the same time, Orin {my Sister in game}, resurrected as well. We were told that the nearest Earth Circle was in the town, but we didn't know if it was controlled by the enemy or not. We opted to go to the potentially unfriendly Earth Circle. There was an NPC minding it, and once we got in and settled, he touched our shoulders and in turn said "Begin Resurrection", then sorta walked away and sat down. I was unaware I could refuse a resurrection, so I asked for clarification, and was introduced to the concept of Battle or Chaos Resurrections.... whee....
When Orin resurrected, she flew into a rage - when Amory resurrected, she curled into a little ball of fear. I spent the rest of the weekend afraid of my own shadow, frozen in the face of the undead, voice quavering from fear. It was so incredibly intense...
My most immersive moment was the mod I got my transform. So, my character's whole deal is that he's a 'Seeker', an order of scholars that research how the universe works, and pass down a book that contains that research to the next seeker to continue the quest. My character's role was to perform a ritual outlined in the book, with a bunch of janky components and the need for four other people with specific talents, and find the truth behind where magic comes from and how it was created. At least... That's what I THOUGHT.
When I cast the ritual, the person they designated to run my plot described the single most awesome scene I've ever heard: (paraphrasing) magic itself and all the elements started going wild, with tempests, infernos, and blizzards all ripping up the earth around us, the ritual distorting time and space until it shattered, leaving the five of us just gaping in a bubble floating in a mass of absolute nothingness. Then, one of the previous Seekers told me that I passed the first test, that the book I had was incomplete, and gave me a book with Creation/Void magic inscribed in it, saying that I needed to find the other pieces of the Book, turning my ordinary little personal plot into an MMO Legendary quest, after which a honest to god Void Mage tried to kill us and take the book. I didn't even realize I wasn't in mortal peril until after we escaped.


I am a US Army Vet and spent my time over in the sandbox, and was a bit of a hell raiser in my teen years. Never had one hesitation.

My first wave battle in my first event was that moment. Undead everywhere and I froze for a moment. Also the moment when I was hooked.


interestingly enough one of my most immersive moment was during an event when all the players were playing in the dark and we were attacked by monsters coming from all side. I don't like night fight much but I got into the game so much I was really scared. It was difficult to keep toll on my friends' state as I could not see much.

Flyaway Bird

I've had a lot of amazingly immersive moments, mostly involving weeping. I love any moment of extreme emotion, because they're often hard to elicit from confident, brassy PCs and they're when you really lose yourself in the character. It's hard to choose just one! So I'll do my best.

There was one event where a bunch of us stayed up almost all night going on a roleplay mod (SUCH a good mod, by the way!). As we were coming back to a near-empty campsite, ready for bed, a possessed PC popped out of the shadows and killed three of us. I was saved by the other guys who went on the mod with us, but the possessed PC dragged my character Irina's two best friends to the centre of the field and circle-rezzed them. At about 5am, as someone went to wake up a Plot member or a Healer's Guild member or anyone who could do anything at all, I sat in the Guild with the spirits of my friends in the circle and bawled for what was probably half an hour. The panic that they wouldn't come back and Irina would lose even more loved ones was all-consuming in that moment. It also happened to be a period where I was going through some OOG stuff, so having a reason to cry my eyes out was really cathartic.

norman b

One of my most immersive moments at game was when my character was "knighted" an Equitem. I was asked to be come Equitem of another house that I wasn't a part of. The house I was in was suffering. We totally failed our house mod earlier that day and one of the members was Enslaved to kill the town up until just before that. I had turned down the offer as I felt the house needed the hard work and dedication I was giving it (even though we already had an Equitem).

One of the other Equitem had come to my character after and asked why I turned it down. She then explained how Equitem were to uphold the Oaths and be there for the people. She asked me to put my personal concerns aside and put my motivation and effort towards the Oaths. I walked back in said I would take up the mantle of Equitem.

During the public small ceremony, I was asked to swear by each oath. While standing up in front of eveyone, it took all my effort not to cry at the time. It was very emotional for a character that I thought would never be honorable or trustworthy. It was a complete 180 direction for the character.


Sita mentioned one for me, my rage of going through a battle resurrection was intense and remains a touchstone for that character. But most intense would be Virid's death (a character Orin had strong emotions for), and the wake that followed. I walked in to the tavern, and couldn't even look at his body until I went into the kitchen and came out chugging "wine" and kicking the table the body was on. Apparently I was so immersive in my RP of that scene, that my OOG husband who plays a Stone Elf had to walk away because he couldn't deal seeing me so upset.