You Don’t Have to See the Whole Hill…

Greetings, prospective adventurers! If you’ve found this article, then you’ve recently become aware of the world of LARPing (live action role playing), or you have been interested in the hobby for some time, but you’ve run into some obstacles between you and your goals. It’s not unusual for these obstacles to be related to the day-to-day grind, and we’ll take a look at some common obstacles, go over some means of addressing them, and then reveal an often overlooked solution for consideration.

You Don’t Have to See the Whole hill.

So the realm of the daily grind has caused time that you put aside for hobbies to slip away. You’re determined to get more of that time back in your life and have an interest in LARPing. You find, however, that time comes attached with (let’s be blunt about it) excuses that in turn become obstacles. Let’s go ahead and bring up some common ones:

  • Time: Undoubtedly rising to again become the biggest obstacle nowadays, we all find ourselves managing how and when we spend our time each day. Or we think we don’t have enough time to spare to do everything we want and need to do.
  • Apprehension: Let’s face it. At some point we have a conversation about what we do for fun with friends, family, a prospective date, or our significant other. With it, there is (potentially) that lingering doubt about mentioning what could be viewed as a ‘nerdy’ or ‘immature’ hobby for a number of reasons.
  • Friends: Alternatively, we’re not worried about how the hobby will be viewed. Instead, we’ve grown apart from the folks we used to have fun with, and/or we’re uncertain about going into a new hobby alone.
  • Money: Hobbies typically require an expenditure to get into the experience. Tacking on an activity can have us questioning if it could be expensive and whether we can afford it or not.

With these in mind we’ll next go over means of approaching and answering these obstacles as we…

Just Take the First Step

  • Time: When it comes down to it, our list of tasks will never be completed. Something will always come up, no matter how busy we are. In order to find time for ourselves, that time has to be made for ourselves.
  • Apprehension: Nerdy? Immature? With the nature of pop culture in this age or the nature of folks participating in sports (such as the International Medieval Combat Federation or the European Airsoft Federation),? [Cue the classic meme of J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jameson.]. [You know the one, and you can see and hear it even now.] “You’re Serious?”

Joking aside, be knowledgeable about the hobby and stand up for it! LARPing can be as physically intensive as any sport and as interesting and socially interactive as any, respectfully, historical recreation. And who knows, You might even convince the person in question enough to have them join in.

  • Friends: Speaking of others joining in, start small. Check in with those close to you and find out what they like to do. See if they have any interests that may overlap with participation in LARPing. Alternatively, make some new friends at the event! Everyone is there to have fun after all.
  • Money: Remember that costs can be mitigated. The most prominent one related to the hobby itself will be your outfit (or, more plainly, your character’s costume). Plan out what you’d like your character’s appearance to be, and if you feel like you’re too big, then that’s okay! That means you have a goal for the character’s future; you only need to now start simple and imagine their beginnings. And we may as well address the fact that things may change and you may not have the same character in the future.

Whether you have an outfit in mind or you’re a pantser, go by your local thrift stores and give them your patronage! You’ll be surprised at how quickly you’ll assemble something for your character. You might even stumble upon some props to bring with you!

Beyond that, you may have to gather some camping supplies for extended or overnight events. Keep it simple and within reason while making sure you’ll get a good night’s sleep! And most events are good about providing boffers and such for new players. That leaves transportation and food, but these necessities are easy enough to plan around for any hobby.

Baby Steps

Whether you have given these obstacles and solutions some consideration before or not, perhaps you are unsure if LARPing is right for you to begin with. Perhaps you want to make sure you’re joining a group that you’ll fit in with. Or perhaps you are having difficulty deciding on the sort of character you want to rep, but you still want to participate. Well fear not dear reader, for there is a solution that will not only help you but will also help those running the event (aka, Plot).

Be a Non-player Character! This does mean you will be representing a character that Plot has written to either further the story, or provide small, side distractions, instead of a character of your own design to play. But it also means that you can participate for far cheaper, perhaps even for free aside from travel. Costumes and props tend to be provided, and you may even be provided food and lodging as well. And of course you get to meet those within the LARP group, get a feel for what you can expect from Plot, and you may even receive some inspiration for your own character!

And with that, we reach the end of this article, but not the journey towards the world of LARPing. I hope this article has helped you find the best path for you after addressing the possible obstacles in your way and giving some insight into how you can solve them successfully. Whether you do so as an adventurer or with a variety of roles, have safe journeys, my friends, and have fun!

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