Will you marry me?

Partnership is one word for what we have.

We mate now.

Just three of the odd love related sentences I’ve had to deal with in character. In larp you are a living, breathing story and, as with many a good tale, there might be a bit of romance in it. Knowing how to set up in character and out of character boundaries is a good idea just so you keep it comfy, fun and above all safe. Here are my tops tips for making an IC romance awesome.

(Some extremes are mentioned in this guide. They are mainly to stamp out some things that are not cool – 99% of the time this will be an incredible laugh but be prepared to be strong if you ever need to.)

  • CHECK WITH YOU OC PARTNERS FIRST. AND AGAIN. AND AGAIN LATER. If you’re lucky enough to have found love in the real world don’t jeopardise it for something make believe. Real life comes first. Ask your partner – check with them if they have any line they don’t want you crossing (It’s cool just don’t let him kiss you/No kids please/Please don’t call him snuggle muffin – that’s my thing.) If your partners can’t hack the idea then find a way to divert your roleplay – it is not worth it. Also! People change. It might be fine at first but when they see a photo of it or roleplay with you it might get too weird. Check with them and if you can’t reach a compromise Abort.
  • Take 5 Minutes to chat OC If you want to be swept off your feet but hate being physically picked up best to tell your Viking of a man chum this before they try. That said if your are looking to play a damsel in distress tell your buddy to get good at catching you every time you faint. Also if you are not up for any sexualised rp then best to set that out from the start. Importantly: use this time to practise sickening love stares to make your fellow warriors vomit.
  • Keep it PG-13 in sight. Seriously. If you’d need to get a room for it in real life don’t do it in make believe world. I want to slay dragons.
  • Not the best plan with your OC partner. Larp characters can last years of your life – if it’s a twice a year system they may live for decades. Love, sadly, can be a little more mortal than that and you can’t predict how the end will be. Keep real life separate: don’t bank on being able to roleplay love with a past lover. And seriously – there is a big wide field out there: go tell a story with someone else.
  • If you think IC sex sounds like a laugh (And it is) Remember this never has to translate to any oc action. If anyone tries to force themselves on you ‘for the roleplay’ kick them in the dick/vagina for me.
  • NOW TO THE FUN BIT. You have 2 options – bare in mind the kids about and the tone of the larp.
  • 1) Walk off screen and ‘fade to black’. Just chill somewhere off screen for a bit. Come back with the odd piece of clothing the wrong way round and look a little flustered if you’re aiming for a laugh
  • 2) ‘The Commentary’ The funniest time I have ever got caught up in a sex scene was when I got married to a monster by accepting his cloak. Odd place – odd customs. The way to divorce there was to lay with the guy so, being the get-this-over-with sort, I went behind a shed with the gent. We gave each other the nod and with some bombastic ‘OH YES’,’IS IT IN YET’,’I’M ROWING YOUR STREAM’,’BUT YOUR OAR NEEDS SOME WORK’ yelling the show made a good laugh for all involved. Cape on back to front we came out to an applause and all was well. Don’t be afraid to let loose. Larp is a story you tell for fun. Like I said above, bear in mind the tone of the even – if you want to make your ‘commentary’ more sinister, passionate or violent (and you and your partner are in full agreement) go for it.

Final thoughts! Indulge! Larp is a medium to confront your biggest fears be that a cyclops or your own fears of romance. On the whole us larpers tend to have shy streaks but there is nothing wrong with trialing chat up lines in a realm away from home.