The Local Larp Manifesto

Today’s post comes from a conflagration of writers. It also comes with some companion posts, including Tips for Starting a Local Community and some explanations over at Notes on the Local Larp Manifesto.

Today we plant our flags for our pesticide-free, organic, fair trade, green, cruelty-free local larp scenes.

Resolved:

  1. Local larp communities should be just that–local.
  2. Small communities are hotbeds of innovation.
  3. Local larp is environmentally friendly.
  4. Small, short, affordable events make larp accessible to a wider range of people.
  5. New players, designers, and organizers are the lifeblood of any community.
  6. The shared values of small communities make them easier to manage.
  7. There is no One True Way; we encourage exchange with other styles, events, and groups.

We will strive:

  1. To give instructions in a first language of the region where they are played.
  2. To market our larps locally, not globally.
  3. To draw our participants from local populations, with a special eye to including players from groups underrepresented in gaming, including people of different economic means, sexual orientations, genders, racial backgrounds, physical abilities, and, of course, parents.
  4. To prioritize running designs by members of our own communities, and to encourage local larp designers to popularize their larps with scripts.
  5. To select larp sites near mass transit and/or offer the opportunity for participants to carpool with each other.
  6. To reduce the carbon footprint of food served at larp events by using local ingredients or going light on the meat.
  7. To cut costs at every corner, and run games on a nonprofit basis (to cover costs only). If this means scenography must suffer, so be it.
  8. To run larps that do not require elaborate costumes, or help players find clothing items on the cheap through organized trips to thrift stores or lending programs.
  9. To run larps that do not require people with full-time regular employment to take time off of work and to run at least some events that last hours, not days.
  10. To require no commitment outside of the event a person signs up for.
  11. To explicitly, intentionally welcome new designers and organizers, providing them mentorship, support, and collaborators when possible.
  12. To publicly post the standard someone needs to meet in order to run a larp.
  13. To treat newcomers like precious gifts; dare to learn and be surprised by them.
  14. To have patience with new players and explain jargon to them in simple language.
  15. To systematically work to prevent harassment and to deal with it when it happens. In particular, to have clear written communication with participants about the values and standards of behavior within the community, and the mechanisms for reporting and dealing with abuse.
  16. To ask if participants need accommodation for disabilities and be honest about what we can and can’t accommodate
  17. To incentivize self-care within the community.

Signed:

Sarah Bowman and Harrison Greene of Austin Freeform Night (Austin, Texas USA)

Dalia Abu Fannouneh, Mohamad Rabah, and Amer Kurdi of Bait Byout Organization (Ramallah, Palestine)

Linn Carin S. Andreassen of Blackbox Deichman (Oslo, Norway)

Brodie Atwater and Lizzie Stark of Larp Depot (Boston, Massachusetts USA)

Jon Cole, Tom Fendt, and Heather Silsbee of Larp House (Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota USA)

Kate Hill and Jason Morningstar of Larp Shack (Durham, North Carolina USA)

Eirik Fatland and Grethe Sofie Bulterud Strand, formerly of the Oslo Larp Factory (Oslo, Norway)

 

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