Friday, September 3, 2010

RPGs- Good LARPing

Roleplaying Games, one of my favorite topics to talk about. For me (and many like me) it is an awesome escape from this realm of possibility into one where magic exists and adventure is around every corner. Now while I rarely take it beyond the table at a friend's house or online, there are those who feel that talking about what they want to do isn't enough; they want to go out and do it. To each their own, I suppose, but it is a special breed that can make it look this cool. (Especially this guy.)

LARPing, or Live Action Role Playing for those who don't know, is the art of dressing up in time-appropriate costumes, grabbing either realistic or foam weaponry and armor and gathering in places with other like-minded individuals to live out a second life of your choice. For example, most medieval LARPs take place in the woods and around campsites to simulate that reality and to place themselves away from technology. Modern LARPs, on the other hand, can be happening around you without notice unless you're one of the 'players'. (Sorry, sorry, I really meant this one.)

There are many different levels of commitment to these sort of gatherings. Many groups meet once every two weeks for an extended weekend of revelry and storytelling. Some dedicated groups meet once every week, but most fall between these two example. Some members show up to every meeting possible, while others can go missing for two months without notice. Some put little into their costume either out of laziness or lack of resources while others go to amazing lengths to recreate the image of their character in perfect likeness. (Another picture of that guy because he's so awesome.) Even something as simple as body paint can be used to great effect.

Like almost anything popular with a non-mainstream group, the LARPing associations have received a lot of bad press because of their activities. Back when tabletop RPGs were seen as satanic and leading children to the devil, this activity would have been considered 'creating soldiers for Satan'. Even today many people who've wanted to try their hand at the hobby hold back due to the how they believe they will be perceived by others; videos like "Lightning Bolt!" don't help the matter either. While their is a lot of dark imagery and themes in some groups, it should not condemn the entire hobby for the actions of a few.

Well, that's all I have to say on the matter, but here's a few more awesome pictures to highlight the greatness of this pastime at it's best.

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