New Player

I will be moving from Atlanta. Ga to the Bay Area and I am looking for a LARP to play. I am looking to play Alliance, but I have a few questions. I see Maelstrom is a invite only game, but was going to be a limited number of games a year. But on this years schedule there are more Maelstrom events then the standard event. Is there a reason for this? Is Maelstrom still invite only, or is this a special year only? Are majority of your events camping events, and what parks or campsites does it use?

I am sure when these get answered I will have many more questions. Thank you for your time and I look forward to finding out more.

Hi there!

Maelstrom is no longer invite-only — it looks like we missed an instance if that on our website. Sorry for the confusion!

We generally rent out camp facilities with cabins and such for our overnight events, though we occasionally do tenting events. We recently had a site transition, so things are a bit up in the air right now but we are hoping to announce the locations for our remaining two overnights of the year as well as our 2019 schedule very soon. We also do day events — our last one of the season is going to be a special one at a local hay maze, but they are usually held at public parks.

Happy to answer any further questions as you get ready to join us! Also, I recommend you join our Facebook group as we have a very active community there — it’s a great place to get some questions answered and meet some folks!
Thank you for the quick responses.

This all sounds great, and I look forward to potentially meeting everyone. So I guess I will start with some quick questions. What is the average level in both campaigns? What is the new player experience like in them also? Are ultralight cores and flat blades allowed? Are wooden shields allowed?

I know I will slowly have more questions, and I appreciate all the help. With the move, the workshop is being downsized, so I am planning all the props early and making them to make moving easier. Always easier to move finished products, rather then loose materials. Anyways, thanks for all the help.

Ultralights and flat blades are allowed. All weapons are subject to marshal approval before use. Wooden shields are allowed as long as they have the proper padding on the outside... But why? (Imagine a crying pain face...)

You can find rules and guidelines for weapon construction in the rulebook.
Is there any more in-depth reading material on the two campaigns? Am I assuming correctly that your character cannot play in both campaigns?
Your character can absolutely play in both campaigns if you choose.

Maelstrom is a fantasy post-apocalypse setting. Enerret is your typical high-fantasy setting. I can't tell you much about level averages, nor give you any factual information on either campaign. That said, it is my personal opinion that Enerret is much more new player friendly.
One of my characters does not. I tell people in game that the mists won't allow her passage to Maelstrom. The other "can travel the mists to there just fine."

Out of game, it's preference. There's nothing *actually* barring her from traveling there. I just don't take her there.

There's more to why the one can't travel to the Maelstrom, but it's a much better story told in game. :)
As long as they're safe? As I said above, all weapons and shields are subject to marshal approval, so as long as it passes inspection, I don't see why they'd be denied.

While head shots are illegal in our game, a good home test prior to showing up to a game is "would I be ok with accidentally getting whacked in the face with this?" Afterall accidents *do* happen.
So I'm a relatively recent transfer to the SF area who only recently returned to playing alliance after having been playing other larps in the northeast for years, so I might have some perspective you'll find relevant. My partner and I brought our old characters in to Enerret -- and it definitely seemed like we were well below the average level. We also started new starting level characters for Maelstrom at the most recent event.

I highly recommend the new character experience at Maelstrom. They give you a lot of lore that most of the PCs don't have (since most are from other places, which makes sense since the campaign is just barely after the apocalypse). It feels tough and crazy and exciting and was a real blast.

Game sizes seem to be smaller out here - think 20-30 people. Probably 2/3 of the characters are played in both campaigns. If you are used to the heavy team based campaign style, teams are much less central out here -- its much more of the town all working together to survive. Folks seem to be super welcoming of new community members. There are a bunch of fighters who swing 25, a bunch of folks who seem to have full columns of 9th list spells and lots of formal levels, and it seems like things not specifically targeted at low level folk default to swinging around 10 damage with big things swinging more. Mods seem to be generally scaled to the weekend APL and only when specifically hooked for low level, scaled for the group going. With that said, at the most recent Maelstrom event I grabbed all the low level characters and did an APL 4 mod that was a blast, as well as a "river boat" mod that was half low level folk that was very appropriately scaled, brilliantly written, skillfully staffed, and amazingly fun.

One of the things that may not be obvious from the published schedule is that there were multiple 1-day Enerret events that were scheduled opportunistically 2-4 weeks before the event. I think I've attended 4 which are not be showing up on the website schedule so far this year, and there is 1 more coming up. The Enerret one-day events tend to be a lot of fun and super easy to attend - just show up with your character, costume, and a lunch. So if you are at all on the fence, the one-day events are an easy way to try things out. We've brought a brand new larper as well as a person new to alliance to them, they both had a blast.