For those of you who are familiar with larp (live action roleplay) you may not know its tech-savvy cousin, remote larp. Remote larping is a social interaction-based game wherein players communicate via audio and video as opposed to being able to physically touch. Usually, remote larps also include a facilitator or game master to keep things on track.
It’s also possible to include remote larp in a traditional larp setting. In this case, one or more players will access the larp from their current location via the internet and interact with the players physically at the location. This can work out very well for modern or science fiction larps, as well as cyberpunk settings. In this way, players remoting in can access information vital to the physical players and still be important part of the player team.
Broadcasting Remote Larp Playthoughs
With the rise of broadcasted tabletop campaigns like Critical Role and Dice, Camera, Action, there is an opening for streaming larps and broadcasts of finished games. Note: some runs are ‘closed’ and not available to non-players. The Geek Initiative has a Twitch channel where you can watch their past open larp broadcasts.
Accessibility and Remote Larp
Remote larp is fantastic for those with physical or financial barriers to ‘traditional’ larp. Due to the nature of remote larp, there is no location fee, and no transportation costs. It’s a great way to include someone with chronic illnesses or issues with chronic pain, or those on the mend from acute conditions. If you’ve got a friend far away, you can remote them into games as well. In general, it’s easy on the budget and on the schedule.
Costuming and Setting in Remote Larp
One of the biggest criticisms Remote larp receives is that the lack of costuming decreases immersion. However, there’s no reason you can’t costume for a remote larp. And, honestly, there is nothing stopping you from taking costuming and setting up to 11 in this medium. If anything, any single player’s possibilities for costuming are expanded—into the room they are playing from. What kind of things would your character have in their space? Remote larp gives each player a very unique opportunity. They get to show their character in costume and speech, but also in their personal environment.
If you are playing a magic user who is remoting in via crystal ball, I am going to want to see a room that screams ‘wizard’ or the setting equivalent. Playing a scientist who lives off of ramen noodles and coffee? I want to see it. I’m not saying you should feel the need to print of that scientist’s favorite microbes in 5×7 glossies and have the mounted on your wall for the game—but why wouldn’t you?
The Geek Initiative Larps‘ Tara M. Clapper is an innovator in the realm of digital larp. Tara and her team can create and run a bespoke remote larp experience for your private group in any genre. TGI will also integrate remote larping experiences into your in-person larp or provide on-demand remote characters and professional game mastering. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.