Kapcon 2014 – day one

Round one. I ran my Soldiers of Fortune LARP which was something I was a little concerned about since it’s the first round of the con and people aren’t always in a space to game or to throw themselves into things just yet. I needn’t have worried. My group of players were excellent, hitting all kinds of emotional notes and I think my casting led to a new outcome for the game which is something I had hoped would happen when I was writing the thing. I can’t go into much because spoilers and I intend to publish this game, but suffice to say.. I really was pleased with the game even if I was emotionally wrought after it. A huge thanks to everyone who signed up for this, I hope you enjoyed it. (Not to self, having bubbles in game was good, use better bubble mix next time)

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Round two. I went into the Games on Demand room half prepared to run something but it wasn’t needed so I sat on the players side of the room and ended up in a game of the Firefly roleplaying game run by Steve. I wasn’t too fussed on characters, so I waited until most other people had chosen and then picked up Simon (although I was equally tempted by Wash). I had an excellent time being Simon and was super impressed with the performance of the other players – portraying canon characters can be quite scary and tricky but I think we were all super good 🙂

Round three. True Love Match.

I went into this because Morgue was running it and I love his games. I thought it would be a bit of a laugh. A silly examination of reality tv and the silly people who go on them. With this in mind (and still feeling a bit masculine from playing Simon) I volunteered to be the ‘lovely guy’ who is the bachelor, which left two men and two women to play the ‘girls’ competing to be chosen as the True Love Match.

It ended up being far more intense than any of us had expected. We all dove into the scenes and the mechanics of trying to do better that it become severely emotional and when it came down to me having to choose between the girls it became so intense… I dunno. It’s one of those things where you needed to be there, but suffice to say that we had a 15 minute debrief afterwards and it was severely needed.

jennitalula true love match

Shelter from the storm (the big LARP)

I was really excited to play a cop in this game, it’s not a role or a type of role I’ve ever been given before and I really enjoyed it. Especially playing so closely with Norm (senior officer) and with Tigger (fire chief) and Courtney (little sister). The game was very stressful, first from not having enough information and then from having way too much to do and people questioning me when I knew I was taking the right actions. Stressful in a good way, and I’m very pleased to have won a prize for this role, this game.

Jennitalula officer

My only frustration was not being able to call people out, or do anything to force them to tell me the truth. It wasn’t the kind of game where I could lapse into police brutality or anything like that.

But it was an excellent game, and that gripe is a small one. A++ would cop again.

Kapcon Day 1

First round I was facilitating in the Games on Demand room. I ended up with four people keen to play Fiasco and we quickly decided on the “Toil and Trouble” Harry Potter -based playset, which I can safely say is one of my all time favourite sets to play. We decided to be one generation on from Harry and his friends.

We had Morag Malfoy, who’s father Draco had died and she was desperate for a new father figure. Larry, Barry and Albus Potter, who were identical triplets and all player characters. Oswald Blaze, the head of Sytherin House and my character Gertrude’s father. Gertrude was in Ravenclaw and therefore a disappointment to her father and romantically involved with Albus Potter, the most jock-like of the Potter triplets.

Morag and Larry were in a secret society looking to do away with the House system and accept all students. They were called the Hatless Few. Morag was in love with Larry and trying to adopt Oswald as her new father. Albus was trying to find the truth about the week he couldn’t remember and there was some drama with Larry being a cold hard bastard.

Gertrude had a contraband pensieve which was used to show the Potter triplets that they participated in a cross-species orgy in the Forbidden forest, which Oswald was somewhat responsible for. He was possessing people and using the imperious curse. Apparently it was all to get Getrude a lizard pet, but I can’t recall how it happened.

The Potter twins awoke in the Severus Snape Memorial Storeroom, having lost *another* week. In the end it was Gertrude, Barry and Albus vs the other PCs with time freezing spells and some kind of ritual to destroy the Sorting Hat once and for all. Gertrude ended up happy with Barry (they’d made out when she thought he was Albus), Albus sad and alone, the Potter Triplets estranged from each other, Oswald relatively happy and an average result for Morag.

Everyone seemed to have a good time, and although we were a bit rushed with some scenes I was very happy with how the session went.

Round 2 I was meant to be facilitating in Games on Demand but I ended up playing instead. Basically I forced Simon to run Monsterhearts for me, James, Nick and Cat. I played a Mortal called Timothy Deacon. He was quiet looking with sad eyes and he was Cassidy’s boyfriend. His true love was Cassidy, a weirdo unstable werewolf boy. Cat played Celene, a fae cheerleader who was interested in Timothy and Nick played Gabriel, a Chosen new kid in school who was a total bad ass.

I had a lot of fun throwing my character directly into conflict, like standing up to the two demonic jock bullies, sleeping with my boyfriend to trigger his darkest self, getting injured and sleeping over at Celene’s (well, not quite…) Gabriel and Tim had known each other as kids so we got on pretty well.

Gabriel: I’m kinda glad you’re on Tim’s side and all.
Cassidy: Yeah, someone threw him off a building tonight, so I have to find them and do something about it.
(The two of them walk out of the party, leaving the injured Tim in the tender care of the fae Celene)
Cassidy: I should let Tim know I’m going
Gabriel: I think Tim knows.
Cassidy: He does? How?
Gabriel: Well, you totally left the party and we’re like, twenty minutes into the forest now.

Meanwhile in Celene’s house a much more feral fey called Hound has arrived, and he is also rather taken with Tim.
Hound: He’s pretty, I want him.
Celene: He’s mine.
Hound: Yes, we’ll bring him back to Faerie and we’ll all take a turn.
Celene: But…I don’t want to share him.
Hound: You’ve been in this world too long. You’ve forgotten the fun we used to have.

Hound intruded on Tim in the bathroom and Tim ran away into the forest and straight into the demon jocks (escape into something worse! oh yes)

Demon!Chad calls Gabriel: I have your little fag friend.
Gabe: Oh really? Because I have a werewolf.

The game climaxed with the demons holding Tim over a waterfall, threatening to let him drop if Cassidy didn’t back off and let them kill Gabriel. Cassidy broke the stand off by pushing the jock holding Tim (and Tim) off the waterfall in a slam tackle. Celene opened a portal to Faerie and they all fell through. Gabriel killed the last demon jock. Tim and Cassidy are then trapped in the Fae realm, apparently forever.

Third round I played in Sophie’s excellent Hamlet meets Gossip Girl game “Kin is Less than Kind”

I don’t want to say too much about this LARP except that we all looked fabulous, I had a great (frustrated, hard, upset, emotional) time playing Serena Van der Woodsen/Hamlet/Harri Markden and thanks very much to Sophie for writing and running it!

^ Me as Harri

Kapcon Day 2

Somewhat wiped from the LARP the night before I was in a fragile state on Sunday morning. I had some tiredness hangover, I had some emo and I had a desire to lie still on the floor and not move. I almost turned over and went back to sleep but one thing got me up: Dale’s Mutants and Masterminds game: Thursday Crisis. I’ve played Professor Eternity in all the previous installments and I was super excited for the new ‘episode’. I had also made sure to peer pressure Nick and Norm into reprising their roles so that we could have the dream team.

Dale was a little concerned when he came in to find me sacked out on the floor on the LARP cushions so he made us all jump up and down before we started gaming. I would soon realise that this was all so that I’d be in a better place for the wringer he was intending to put me through.

Thursday Crisis started with those of us in the League of Heroes appearing on a breakfast TV show. I gave Captain Hope strict instructions to not make it all about his movie, a somewhat fictionalised biopic called Hope. He clamped an arm around me before the cameras starting rolling and kept it there for the duration. The interview started badly with the host asking all sorts of difficult questions about the disappearing planes, who was playing who in the movie and what about those videos of Hope with a French supermodel? What were we doing about the 16th century windmill that showed up in the middle of London? There was a brief break in which Cpt Hope tore strips off the host and then our son Daniel and his girlfriend Layla joined us on the show. Difficult questions continued Cpt Hope was asked why he had stopped sponsoring the kids in the cancer ward, I stopped paying attention and started work on a hand held scanning device but the questions went too far and I finally I stormed off the stage saying “This interview is over.”

There was some fighting and some awkward introductions (it was the first time I’d met Layla and there was a rumour she was pregnant?) Then we all made for the Hope Jet. Layla and Daniel stopped to make out on the red carpet, which Hope didn’t feel comfortable with.
Cpt Hope: If you’re going to have sex in public….DON’T!
Daniel Hope: I don’t think it’s us getting caught with the pictures, Dad.

We went to find out the source of the most pressing concern of the moment: a time anomaly that was causing weird things to happen. I made a super GPS scanner, origin locator thingie and we headed to Paris.
Salvo to Daniel: Watch as your father inevitably strides into the dangerous thing.
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Kapcon 2011 LARP Al-Shir Ma

I started the game in a tour group, we were separate from most of the other LARP. Sunshine Sahara Tours was guided by Paige, a very cheerful and upbeat American. I was there with my long term girlfriend, Bianca. We’d met up with her sister Rachel and Rachel’s new boyfriend Gerard on the tour. We were shown a number of elegant remains on our way to the historic Al Shir-Ma site and then we were plunged into the marketplace.

The market was intense, not much room to get through and way too many people yelling at us to buy stuff, cheap tourist tack. Bianca and I both bought fans though, which turned out to be very wise investments given the heat. At the end of the alleyway there was a dead end but it opened up to a strange, veiled old woman who said odd things. She insinuated that I had a husband, which I most certainly did not. Anyway, she seemed to be the only option for getting out of the market but she wouldn’t let us go through together. After a few others from the tour group had gone through and not returned Bianca and I decided to try it. Bianca went first on the understanding that I’d be right behind her.

Matthew, the PE teacher who I thought had a nice sense of humour was the next through after Bianca, but I went through after him. On the other side was a strange sight, Al Shir-Ma as it had been thousands of years ago with the famed fountain in the middle. Bianca and I had a jolly time exploring and talking to the locals who all pretended to be from the past. We realised it was a kind of SCA style historical re-enactment kind of show and ‘played along’. We took pictures in front of the fountain and were told we weren’t allowed into the Sultana’s court. I was called a slovenly woman at some point in there, which felt a bit harsh given that I had deliberately worn clothes that covered my shoulders and I had a head scarf.

Then something strange happened, Bianca said she remembered something…like a past life. Then I felt like I remembered…we were really from here. The seven years we’d spent in the future were the unusual years. Seven years coincidentally matched up with the Djinn disappearing and the fountain running dry. Bianca said that she might be a Djinn and I had nothing to say about that. Except that we both remembered that I did, in fact, have a husband. If he was around, things were about to get very interesting indeed. Continue reading

Kapcon 2011 day one

I started the convention with Anna’s mini-LARP Dead Man’s Chest. It was a pre-generated ‘murder mystery’ evening style game but much more LARPish and the level of costuming was pretty darn high. I was cast as Elizabeth Swann Stanforth, the Governor’s daughter. I went for an anachronistic-but-got-the-idea across costume of a knee length shiny tiered skirt, pink tights, black boots, the top of my Victorian dress and a delicate silver charm necklace. Spoilers for the game follow so don’t read on if you think you might play it some time…

My character had just one secret: she hadn’t been kidnapped by pirates by accident, she had made a deal with Captain “Saucy” Nancy to be kidnapped so she could escape the engagement to the Spanish Don that her father arranged. My character goals were get out of the marriage, figure out if you want to be a pirate and try and get engaged to the naval captain instead.

I had a good time in this game, arguing with Scott who was playing my dad, my sister who had run away as a cabin boy on the other pirate ship, making friends with Captain Jack Sparrow Black, who unfortunately got thrown into a volcano at the end of the game, and arranging things so that I could have my cake and eat it. I got engaged to Captain Overy of the English navy and made an arrangement to meet up with Captain Nancy and go privateering with her when he was out of town. Nice one.

I was actually a little surprised at how much everyone seemed to want to help me, but this was probably helped by the fact that I forgot to play Elizabeth as a complete brat. I could have really ramped that up… There was some trouble with my sister running off with the Spanish to be a pirate and possibly getting blown to pieces but well, I wasn’t going to stop her living her own life.

That’s me, Daddy (without wig) and Captain Hal, my fiance.

We finished a little early and were roped in to being armed cops busting up a drug den very briefly. I’m not actually sure what that was about.

Second round I was running in the Games On Demand room and I got a group together to play Silver Kiss of the Magical Twilight of the Full Moon. Continue reading

Kapcon round 6

Behold the majesty of Captain Katamari!

I know he’s a lot to take in. Just bask in his majesty for a moment.

Okay, if you’re done basking. Captain Katamari was created by six of the Prince’s cousins to battle the evil Mega King and destroy the Dread Star he was creating. We each took a body part and rolled up dedicated items that would give each part certain traits.

You want to see more detail? Of course you do. Continue reading

Kapcon 19 – Day 2

AKA the funnest day ever.

I had a very good sleep after the LARP except that I woke up at 6.30 buzzing with the day before and excited about the day to come. In first session I played Amphigori’s game American Gothix. I was cast as the Artist, who truly believed that to be the best artistically you needed to suffer. Thus I complained about everything and constantly pointed out how terrible everything was. It was so much fun. The only problem was that we all kept laughing. Of course, this isn’t a problem at all. The game was full of awesome players…

Nikki was the newcomer ‘Wishless Star’, the token girl whose parents’ minivan we were road tripping in.
Bryn played Stevie, Star’s annoying little brother who we were forced to take with us so he could play Commodore 64 with his friend.
Glen was The DJ, Vinyl aka The Reefer
Andy M was playing the Delinquent, Zues, who was both scary and desperate to impress John
Ants played John Smith, the uber-Goth, basically the leader of the crew and oh so Goth, oh so smug. (I hated him, because I was clearly a lot more Goth than him.)
My character’s legal name had been Bryan but he was going by Byron.

Lots of awesome quotes from this game, I’ll try and give them context…

When we were deciding where to sit in the minivan John took the back seat, draping his arms along the back of the seat like he was holding court. I hung back while the delinquent chose the seat directly behind the driver, Vinyl pushed Stevie into the middle front seat so he could control the stereo. I was heading for the middle back seat, so that all of us in the back were seated alone. John Smith said: Byron, why don’t you sit next to me? Speak some poetry.
Byron: Nah man, I’m busy.
(I should have done it, really because my character sheet said to take every chance to read my poetry but I hated him so much I didn’t want to do what he said. It was awesome.) Continue reading

Reunion LARP

This year’s LARP was about a number of planets interconnected by gates which were shut down 500 years ago being reunited. My character, Marianne La Grange, was from the delegation from Arboria. We lived on the tops of gigantic trees and dressed like Victorians.

The delegation from Arboria

That’s us. You’ll notice I am standing rather close to a gentleman with a white scarf and a walking stick? That’s Alan Copeland the 26th, current King of New London. We were kind of involved. The thing is though, my character had a reason for going in the delegation that was more than just curiosity. My character’s family was immortal. My parents had cracked the gene coding or something and I’d been alive roughly 560 years. I was keen to catch up with my siblings and also…my husband. I’d married Steven back before the shutdown and we were separated when the gates closed. I had indulged in any number of flings since then, but I hadn’t let myself fall in love with anyone else until Alan…just a couple of years ago.

So, I was anxious. Of course, this was all a secret. None of the rest of the delegation knew my secret, although the physician had been suspicious. Alan’s father, Alan Copeland the 25th had been asking some awkward questions so I left New London and travelled. When I heard that the 25th was killed I went back to see the 26th. Right around that time the gates reopened.

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Kapcon 19 – day 1

I didn’t get my A into G to register for first round games before they started filling up. I decided the right way to start the con was with Games on Demand. Once in the room I managed to peer pressure Steve into running Bad Family. Also in the game were Trish playing River, 14 and whiny, Richard playing Randy the grandfather, Mike playing James the stoner twin of my character Jaime, Dylan was Alex, the eldest and Nasia, playing Beth, the mother of the rabble and Randy’s daughter.

My want for the episode was to win the school talent show. After we’d already established that James and River were rebellious and failing school I decided I had better be the good kid and ensure that Nasia didn’t enter a despair spiral. It didn’t really work. It’s tough being the mother of a Bad Family. If it wasn’t for my character’s addiction to amphetamines, I suspect I would have been rather boring compared to the others. This game was hella frenetic because of the high number of players but I managed to get the following Golden quote:

Beth, yanks River out of the bathroom so she won’t be late for school, interrupting her makeup application.
River: But if I go like this, everyone will look at me!
Beth: So clean all that stuff off your face.
River: but then no one will look at me!

In second round I ran my first ‘proper’ session of The Silver Kiss of the Magical Twilight of the Full Moon. It’s a game I wrote riffing off supernatural teen romance stories, specifically spoofing Twilight but incorporating a lot of the books I’ve read in the last year. It’s a game for four players, two supernatural beings, two humans. One of each falls in love and the other two are the best friends.
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LARP excitement 2009

Following on from LARP excitement, I have some more thoughts.

Plus I’m excited about the LARP and I’m thinking about it a lot. This year’s Kapcon LARP is called Reunion, which is a sci-fi scenario based on a lot of different worlds coming together after being separated for 500 years.

My character this year is a citizen of Arboria, which is basically Steampunk World. I am wearing the beautiful and full on Victorian day dress that I inherited from Michaela with some steampunkery accessories. From Trade Me I got goggles, (handily blue to match my dress), a Harley Davidson saddlebag which I will use as a pouch, watch parts necklace and a sturdy leather belt to dangle things off.

I borrowed the most perfect Victorian style boots off Giffy, they are so super cute and also match perfectly the brown of my belt.

I borrowed a teeny wee hair iron from my mother in law in order to make myself adorable ringlets and I trialled my hair style and it looked awesome. I am so super psyched about my outfit. Expect some photos early next week!

In regards to the game itself, my character sheet is full of the delicious emo romance roleplaying that I love so much. It will be a super awesome night I think.

Must remember to stay hydrated (easy enough last year by having a water bottle on hand and refilling as needed), sit down as often as possible, eat a sandwich or similar when I get home and to not ingest any caffeine at any point. That should ensure a fun game and a drastic reduction of the LARP hangover I’ve been suffering the past few years. I don’t like missing the first round of the second day, especially since I’ve signed up to play Amphigori’s American Gothix game.