LARP Debate and Rant: Use it or lose it, web edition

I’ve a little something that just frosts my cookies! For the past several years I have hosted a couple of LARP community oriented projects which I started in order to provide a venue for an aspect of the community that I felt was lacking. Those projects are the academic based mailing lists and the US LARP Wiki. Why is it that only when I recently shared with the people that participate on each that I was looking to shut both down from non-use, that folks finally spoke up and shared that they valued the contributions and were sad to see … Continue reading

LARP at Play: The LARP Production Triangle

I realize I may be preaching to the choir here, however I’d like to pass on a lesson learned regarding LARP production. It’s a lesson taken from the Project Management Triangle and revolves around the project requirements of Good, Fast, and Cheap (the Project Management Triangle typically uses Time, Scope, Cost). In any project you have control over two of those options, but not all three.

In the image:

Project_Triangle

  • Good is the quality of the final product (can be your LARP as a whole, or just a part of it, like a website)
  • Fast refers to the time required to deliver the product
  • Cheap refers to the total cost of designing and building/creating the product

The triangle reflects the fact that all three properties are interrelated, and it’s not possible to optimize all three. There will always be one that suffers.

If you pick:

  • Fast + Cheap = Inferior
    Quick turn around time and well priced, but not high quality work or workmanship. Don’t expect this to last beyond the game if you were hoping to use it again or to look exactly like the snazzy example photo you provided.
  • Fast + Good = Expensive
    Quick turn around times and high quality work or workmanship, but not well-priced. Expect to pay a pretty penny for this option.
  • Good + Cheap = Slow
    High quality work or workmanship, but not a quick turn around time. You’ll need to be patient with this option.
  • Where all three intersect
    Dream on, you don’t control all three. Pick again.

I share this because I know many LARP organizers/owners/GMs want to get the biggest bang for their buck, however that can, and often does, come with a price. I feel understanding how Good, Fast and Cheap are interrelated I think can help organizers better understand when speed should be foregone for cost and quality or quality should be foregone for speed and cost, for examples.

Back to Blogging

I’ve started writing down topics that I’d like to cover as I return to blogging at this site. If there’s something you feel would be a good topic, please let me know. Outside of that, I’m hoping in the next couple of months to start putting up regular blog posts once or twice a month.

This is a test

It is only a test… or maybe it isn’t. I’ve been thinking this blog is getting a tad neglected and perhaps it’s time to start writing again, just shorter articles that the former iteration. Right now I’m sorting out possible topics and if I want to adopt a particular posting schedule. I’ve also updated my WordPress install to allow auto posting of entries to my Facebook page and then subsequently my Twitter feed. I no longer need to manually do a status update, the plugin takes care of it all. Woot! Now to start thinking and planning.

Busy, busy bees … on a subdomain

While mortalisrpg.com has been pretty quiet, one of the subdomains of this site has been pretty busy. That subdomain belongs to the US LARP Wiki at larpwiki.mortalisrpg.com. The US Larp Wiki is intended to become a knowledgebase of information about the US larp scene. A way to record the collective tribal knowledge that is scattered about the community. This will include, but is not exclusive of: historical, factual, theoretical, instructional and artistic information. If you’re a US LARPer and want to contribute, all you need to do is create an account at the wiki website and start contributing.

Why the crickets?

At the start of the year the site was given an overhaul, old articles reposted and then … crickets. While things have been quite on this site, real life and some side projects have kept me busy. The primary side project is the creation of a LARP group in the Seattle area whose focus is on unrelated (meaning not campaign or chronicle tied) one-shot games and not being tied to any one particular rule set or genre. If you’re going to be at Norwescon myself and my cohorts will be running a Paranoia game on Friday and a Firefly/Serenity themed … Continue reading

Somwhere between old and new

If you’ve visted the site any time between the New Years Day of this year and about a week ago you’d remember how … empty the site was. That’s no longer the case. All of the old article content has been restored (some of the links within are still broken as they point to the old site*). I’m now focusing on the static site content: the pages, and the project pages in particular. * I don’t plan on updating these links as I look at these articles as legacy writings and it’s easy enough to search for the other articles … Continue reading

LARP at Play: LARP 101

Now that my spring break is over, it’s time to return to writing. There are some good articles lined up for this year, including a few from some guest columnists. This article was inspired by a comment from Ryan Paddy. While I’ve covered many aspects and angles of LARPing, one I’ve not really covered in any depth has been an introduction to LARPing. It’s hard to write an article that will cover every question that an individual new to the hobby may have, however I think there are enough common basics that can be addressed. Welcome to LARP 101 or … Continue reading

LARP at Play: Young’s Law

This week there’s a guest columnist, Mike Young, and he’ll be discussing Young’s Law or why word of mouth is an important part of growing and advertising a LARP. And now Mike … LARP Is Sold By Word of Mouth I first spoke those words in the early ’90s, and nearly two decades later they are still true. Think about it. How did you start LARP? If you are like most people, a friend brought you into it. Word of mouth. But I wanted to do a more in-depth analysis. Why is Young’s Law true? What makes it work? And … Continue reading

LARP at Play: Doing Your Homework, Part 3

I’d like to apologize for the tardiness of this article. I recently suffered a hard drive failure and have been restoring everything from back-ups and that means redoing lost work and that is what has happened here. This is the last article in a three part series on doing your homework. The first article article focused on what creators and designers should consider and the second article focused on what organizers and staff should explore. This last article explores what players should consider. Players Don’t think you’re off the hook just because you’re a player. Even you have a few … Continue reading