A Swedish Prologue

Prolog - A Swedish Larp Convention
This weekend, 300 hundred larpers take off to one of the key nodal points of Swedish larp, the city of Västerås.

Västerås is known for both the 1000 player fantasy games of Eleria (previously organized by Enhörningen), edu-larping company LajvVerkstaden and a history of larping stretching back to the late 80’s.

Now, in the first weekend of April, the all-larp-convention Prolog (Prologue) takes place in Västerås for the third year with a three days packed with live-roleplaying. Participants are mainly Swedes but are also coming from Norway, Denmark and Finland.

Prolog is an annual larp convention that aims to connect Swedish larpers from all different styles and cultures. Through meeting new people, attending great workshops and of course by playing all kinds of larps, attendees will be exchanging experiences and cross-polinate.

We aim to go as deep as possible in every aspect of larping, from classic fantasy to jeep-form avantgardism. To do this we create a program ranging from workshops in reenactment handicraft to creating and playing small yet intriguing free-from roleplaying scenarios. Our goal is to unify the Swedish larp society and to create a big sandbox for trying new things and evolving the whole movement.

Web: Prolog – Ett svensk lajvkonvent (In Swedish, English with Google Translate).

Article by Petter Karlsson

Happy feet

Happy Feet
Ever wanted to play a tragic penguin hero? Watch out for the Danish and English translations of Ikuisuuden laakso (The Valley of Eternity) by Juhana Pettersson. The Finnish indie RPG will be out in Danish early 2011, and the English edition sometime later the same year.

The Valley of Eternity is set in the eternal cold of the Antarctic continent, and features noble, yet lonely, penguin heroes and their sublime philosophical powers, and savage anti-penguins who become as one with the glacier. In Ikuisuuden laakso, the hero will always die alone and unloved.

Web: Ikuisuuden laakso (In Finnish, English with Google Translate).
Webshop: Boostep

Illustration: Jonna Lylykangas

Article by Ole Peder Giæver

Nordic Larp Book

Nordic Larp Book
The Nordic Larp anthology was released in December, and contains 29 different stories about larps that have been held in the Nordic countries the past 15 years.

– The vision of the book was to package the Nordic Larp tradition in a way that communicates the wonder of our way of larping to someone who has never tried it, says Jaakko Stenros, one of the editors.

Classics such as En stilla middag, Europa, Panopticorp, 1942 and Mellan himmel och hav are amongst the games covered.

– We are hoping that in sixty years someone will discover it from the depths of the library of the aesthetics department, and be inspired by it.

The book is 300 pages, has 250 photos, and is printed in full color.

– A central challenge, with any work that tries to capture larp, is that it is ephemeral and subjective. To truly understand it you need to participate, and even then there are as many stories as there are players. We tried to tackle this problem by having numerous voices and points of view in the book, says Stenros.

Webshop: Fëa Livia
Web: Nordi Larp Book

You can also watch a 30 min talkshow about the book made by the Nordic Larp Talks team during the release parties of the book in December.

Photo: Olle Sahlin

Article by Ole Peder Giæver

Educational larping


Education Larpers’ in Sweden (ELIS) is a network of people and organizations utilizing larp for educational purposes. One of the network’s members, LajvVerkstaden, is a commercial society working with larp as a cultural form and a pedagogical tool. They organize everything from serious role playing games about democracy and oppression to playful larps in fantasy settings.

“We’ve worked with thousands of kids and youths where we together have created strong stories, unique to every group and in which everyone has been a co-author”, the group writes on their webpage.

Web: ELIS (In Swedish, English with Google Translate).

Article by Ole Peder Giæver

The Nørwegian virus

Zombie Porn

Since its inception in 2007, the short, free, experimental RPGs from the Nørwegian Style blog have been spreading virally. Translations are available in Spanish, Polish, French, Swedish and Korean (!). The games include gems such as Zombie Porn and the concept of role playing poems (15 minute freeform scenarios), which has inspired Marc Majcher’s book Twenty-Four Game Poems. His book can be purchased at Lulu.com, together with the Nørwegian Style anthology.

Web: Nørwegian Style

Article by Ole Peder Giver

The Game that can last a Thousand Years

Thousand-Year Game Design

You can win 1000 USD in “The Thousand-Year Game Design Challenge”; The game can be of any theme or genre you desire, but there is one restriction: You’re creating a “new classic,” like Chess, Tag or card games. Entries must be submitted before midnight July 31st, 2011, and the winner will be announced and awarded January 1, 2012.

Web: Daniel Solis: The Thousand-Year Game Design Challenge

Article by Ole Peder Giæver

Finnish Troll Punks

Finnish Troll Punks
Neonhämärä is a Finnish pervasive streetlarp campaign which started in the autumn of 2008. Episodes 10 and 11 are scheduled for March and June 2011.

– It’s about regular people getting mixed up in some weird happenings in modern Helsinki. One of the goals is to help players see their own home town in a different light, and also to make players think about themes related to the occult, spiritual growth and different world views, says organizer Simo Järvelä.

Gameplay emphasizes social interaction. There are roughly 25-30 regular players, plus 0-15 supporting cast.

Web: Neonhämärä (In Finnish, English with Google Translate).

Photo: Flickr/suviko

Article by Ole Peder Giæver