Geek Girl Advice: Things I wish I could tell myself before my first LARP



Photo courtesy of UnderworldLARP.ca

Disclaimer: For those of you who don’t know, LARP is an acronym that stands for live-action role playing. Yes, like from that movie Role Models, with Paul Rudd. Yes, it’s kind of like Dungeons and Dragons meets Renaissance Faire meets improv theater. Yes, lightning bolt, lighting bolt.


Nana Wells: Just talk to people. Shut up, stop thinking you’re supposed to be immediately great at this and talk to people. Ask questions about the world. Find out peoples’ names. Build a rapport with people and don’t remain in your own little clique. Also, bring baby wipes.


Marie Burell: More blankets. And not to be so damn stressed and scared of everyone. They don’t bite… at least I hope they don’t…


Angela Basset: If you have to make a choice between something that’s probably a safe bet, and you won’t die, versus a dangerous mission, always choose the dangerous mission.


Briana Westmoreland: Just talk to people, folks aren’t going to judge you. so don’t be shy. Also, at the same time, no one has any right to touch you and you can ask people to leave you alone.


Kiri Brasseur: CALM DOWN. Use a modern bathroom before you get there. Breathe. Featherlite boning is NOT going to keep the shape of your bodice.


Brandon M Burns: Learn some more folk songs to completion. Approach people with a little caution. Wear more layers. Do everything. Bring snacks. Don’t let people talk down to you/underestimate you just because you’re a cute girl. Accept courtships from no one. Don’t join any organization for at least one year. Stay in character always. If something gets boring, go look for trouble.


Amy Lynn Resele: Every faulty principle that you’ve built your life on is going to crumble. These people will love you for who you are, and not judge you for your size. Let your guard down, you’re finally safe.


Jacci Kaschak: Try not to let others get to you. It’s always scary when you first start and you dont know anyone, but remain strong and true to your character and others will respect you for it, even if not right away.


Stephanie Parmelee: You don’t look NEARLY as stupid as you think you do… Besides, everyone else is here doing the same thing… go get em! No, you’re not expected to remember everyone’s name the first time. Yes, it’s okay that your costume isn’t as frilly/elaborate/extravagant as theirs. Yes, it’s okay that you forgot your name and that your back history is a tale that can be told in 2 minutes. Just jump in. Worst case scenario, you have something to giggle about when you look back.


Sarah Jessop: Your girly friends from school are never going to know how dorky you were on the weekend, and even if they do, who cares!


Chelsea Stoddard: Try picking a character that is not so against the grain of the world.


L.C. Longo: You should pack more socks. That cute guy in the cloak? He’s a dick… Fairy Fire is not as cool as it sounds.


Tara M. Clapper: Bring friends and you’ll feel less nervous.


Stephanie Leigh Twilley: Don’t trip over the fire pit.


Rachel Onca Berleman: Stop taking the world so seriously, and try to bask in a group of people where you feel you belong.


Danielle Sanfilippo: You know how you’re thinking right now that it might be just like Oblivion, but real life? It is. Now kick some ass and have fun!


Jennifer Hartshorn: If you can possibly manage it, take Monday off. You are going to want to sleep for 24 hours after your first event.


JJ Bartlett: Make up a character that has a personality/character quirk/whatever that will cause you to say ‘yes’ to getting involved in things, rather than one who shies away from getting involved in plots. Being a shy/cautious character is all well and good, story-wise, but you are going to want to be doing stuff.


Kiri Brasseur: Yes, this IS just like improv, and the same golden rule applies: never say no.


Erica Tieppo: No matter what your boyfriend tells you, la poste di falcone is only going to make you look kinda crazy during your combat test, especially if you only “learned” it a half hour ago.


Elizabeth Mc Allister: Wander around. Listen to the stories being told around the fire.


Bianca Mason: Be yourself, don’t be afraid to ask questions, and have fun. You are most likely going to make some of the best friends ever.


Jacqueline Whalen: Be more naive sometimes… yes, that NPC is probably leading you to danger, but that’s part of how you get really involved in the game. If you think you are going somewhere dangerous, see if you can bring some other players along who you trust in game, but don’t pass up on plot.


Leslie Stewart: Don’t let that cute boy from LARP talk sweet on you, and flirt with you, in his cute costume, and be all adorable and stuff. You might end up marrying him someday. Oh wait.


Today’s post comes from an epic Facebook group, The LARPettes. If you’re a female LARPer, join up for a daily barrage of fantastic and femme flared LARP chatter.

Please leave your own LARP advice, or join the conversation on Twitter. #GeekGirlAdvice

15 thoughts on “Geek Girl Advice: Things I wish I could tell myself before my first LARP

  1. Have fun when and if you NPC. It is a wonderful way to get used to the mechanics of your larp, meet people, and to immerse yourself in many different roles. You’ll get a taste of where you stand and what styles of combat and role play that suit you.

  2. I do a podcast on LARP and role-playing theory (nwnerdcast.com). This list is full of fantastic advice! My first advice is, “don’t be afraid to engage, a big part of LARPing is making your own fun.”

  3. Bring water or something to carry a large portion of water in! Not every camp site has running water, nor is it always in a convenient location for you. Learn a trade/craft. If it’s sewing, leather working, or even cooking awesome food; you will get mad props if you can make something of your own (and save yourself money). It also will come in handy if the other person is willing to barter for something you want. It’s okay to not be running around in the standard “gypsy/almost nekkid” garb people tend to picture the women in these games wearing. It doesn’t make you any less of a person if you don’t wear it; if you want to, go for it as well.

  4. Claw prosthetics are never a good idea for a PC. Always invest in a good pair of shoes before you spend time on the nice armor.

  5. For the most part, LARPing is dominated by men…knowing that, go into it to have fun and enjoy yourself. Don’t be intimidated by the amount of men surrounding you or overwork yourself into looking overly-sexualized. Unlike a lot of places in the mundane world, people are not there to judge you solely upon your looks. Thin, overweight, stunning or not, you are there sharing a common hobby…and that’s all that matters.

  6. Pingback: Geek Girl Pride is contagious! Stop bullies and trolls in their tracks by being proud. | Leslie IRL

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