Empire has finished for the year and we’ve started cleaning the costume and putting it away. This is made vastly easy by having a new store room for PD which is downstairs from the workshop and this should mean we don’t end up in tears over vast piles of rotten kit next year. This is good.
I didn’t get to Empire E4. It’s the first event this year where I’ve spent more time in the field than driving to and from it, and I was in the field for three hours on the Thursday before. Instead I went to another game. I strongly believe that to run good LRP most people need to play LRP. I’ve played a lot this year.
We’ve got our Contact game coming up in a couple of months. We’re running at the Granges new site in the centre of Birmingham. It’s an entirely indoor site with a huge floor available to LRPers. They have an open day on the 15th October to enable event organisers to have a look around and see the site. They promise cake.
As a result we’re looking at how we dress the sites we’re using. Most of our sites recently have been scout sites. They tend to have chairs, tables, and a certain scout site ambiance to them. We try and adjust that and have managed previously to create spaces where the minimum of scout site has crept around the edges, but it’s never perfect.
We used Drakelow tunnels for one event. This is a complex of tunnels built to house the Rover factory during WW2. There was almost no dressing involved. It served perfectly as what we wanted it to be, and we spent a lot of money on making things glow green.
A dedicated indoor site won’t be without its problems. It’s not OUR site. We’re still only renting it for a weekend. However, it’s run by LRPers and they agree that possibly us painting the walls is acceptable, as other groups will also be able to use this. We’ll want ways to hang signs etc and again, other groups will also find this useful.
Lighting is always an issue. Buildings tend to have long strip lights. They tend to be brightly lit and it’s hard to make people jump at shadows when there aren’t any. We either light areas ourselves or find ways to dim the lights. Ideally we colour code areas with lighting.
I’ve been clearing kit out of the workshop in order that I can navigate better and find some of the kit we’ve got in storage. We have a lot of cables and ducting that can be used to give spaces a more industrial vibe. We also have piles of science tat. Little things that can help players roleplay with the environment they are in. It gives them things to do to help them feel that they’re doing something.
Every site has different needs. We’ve got a new site. There’s a lot of space and it’s not somewhere we’ve tried to dress before. Fortunately we’ve got a lot of stuff and some of it we’ve been storing for years for just this opportunity.