American LARP vs. Nordic LARP

NiTessine

Geek of the North
Validated User
You're right. Kinda.
I think the main issue is that we're talking about this concept of Nordic LARP contra American.
That's actually faulty. Nordic LARP is... A style. Like Nordic-style Drama. I think the reason it was coined as being "Nordic" is the development of said style in the Nordic countries, whereas a lot of the stuff there is done in Fantasy LARPing in these countries are often more of the same stylistic choices that can be found in Europe and America.
There's a lot of evolution on the topic, and as LARP-cultures are cross influencing each other, we might need to re brand a lot of things.
Are there actually big fantasy systems with long rulebooks in the vein of Alliance, Labyrinthe, or NERO somewhere in the Nordic countries? I know they do not exist in my neck of the woods. To me, those are the big difference between what goes on in here vs. what happens across the pond (or in the UK, for that matter). While blockbuster larps have their design documents, they're more about the creative vision and safety than spell lists and character sheets.

I do know there are some WoD campaigns going on here and there but I'm unsure how many of them still use Mind's Eye Theater.
 

Dalerik

Preaching Gaming Anarchy
Validated User
Are there actually big fantasy systems with long rulebooks in the vein of Alliance, Labyrinthe, or NERO somewhere in the Nordic countries? I know they do not exist in my neck of the woods. To me, those are the big difference between what goes on in here vs. what happens across the pond (or in the UK, for that matter). While blockbuster larps have their design documents, they're more about the creative vision and safety than spell lists and character sheets.

I do know there are some WoD campaigns going on here and there but I'm unsure how many of them still use Mind's Eye Theater.
There are a lot of influence coming from the south down here in Denmark. According to someone, we're having out first Mythodea event soon.
A few of the big Fantasy LARPs are rules-"heavy" (In the American terms, I'd wager it's rules light), but a lot of the big games have been in a tradition of realistic rules, the only rule being the laws of physic and walls made of rafters and fibertex.

Also; I've been in a hell of a lot of WoD games with their own homebrewed rules, some 40 odds pages of it. It's like... the boffer version of MET.
I'm apt to regard them as very influenced by MET in their design, only with the turn-based stuff phased out.
 

Dalerik

Preaching Gaming Anarchy
Validated User
I also just got home from a cyberpunk LARP where there's been drawn a hell of a lot of the British NERF-Gun LARP scene.
Lots of off-crowd rules, and hit point counting.
 

Knaight

Registered User
Validated User
Are there actually big fantasy systems with long rulebooks in the vein of Alliance, Labyrinthe, or NERO somewhere in the Nordic countries? I know they do not exist in my neck of the woods. To me, those are the big difference between what goes on in here vs. what happens across the pond (or in the UK, for that matter). While blockbuster larps have their design documents, they're more about the creative vision and safety than spell lists and character sheets.
Not to mention Amtgard, which is probably the single biggest American LARP. At least the local park is basically entirely stick jocks with no interest in roleplaying*, which I consider wonderful but definitely has a completely different appeal to Nordic LARPs, where it's basically just a combat sport.

*At Amtgard, several of these stick jocks including me also play tabletop RPGs.
 

Lukas Sjöström

Society of Unity scholar
Validated User
I'd say that even traditional fantasy events in Sweden (can't speak for the rest of the Nordic countries) tend to be quite different from what I've seen of most large American fantasy LARPs. There are not really any games with "thick rulebooks" -- rules are kept to what's needed to simulate stuff that can't be practically done. I've never encountered the type of skills that American LARPs seem to have, nor the concept of "levelling up".

Judging from the discussions I've seen about gear, there also seems to be a discrepancy, with Swedish LARPers being far more concerned about historical fidelity, the use of appropriate materials (mostly wool and linen), and the absence of "cartoonishness". There is not a sense of "fantasy" as being something entirely separate from "history", which I've seen expressed by many Americans.
 

Alon

Registered User
Validated User
Are there actually big fantasy systems with long rulebooks in the vein of Alliance, Labyrinthe, or NERO somewhere in the Nordic countries? I know they do not exist in my neck of the woods. To me, those are the big difference between what goes on in here vs. what happens across the pond (or in the UK, for that matter). While blockbuster larps have their design documents, they're more about the creative vision and safety than spell lists and character sheets.
My understanding (based on what people say at Intercon) is that around 2/3 of LARPs in the Nordic countries are your typical boffer LARPs. I don't know if they have the same yay-long rulesets of Knight Realms, Dystopia Rising, Accelerant, or whatever, but the concept of "hit one another with foam swords" is similar, and I don't even know to what extent it's the same community as Knutepunkt. In the US, Intercon and the boffers were traditionally separate communities, and even today the Interconners to a large extent are only involved in one boffer system, Accelerant, which works differently from KR and such.
 
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