two chicks write some LARPs
this one has a game within a game
Shebopaleileigh, by Tory Root
Northumber College, Canaan, Vermont. It's halfway through December, and your overdue final projects are piled up as thick as the snow outside your window. The cold light of dawn looks pretty through the pine trees, sure, but this will probably be the third late night in a row. All the same, you're pulling your boots out from the wet pile in the lobby of your dorm and shrugging into your coat, because you just heard that the famous traveling Shebopaleileigh Improv Troupe has come round to the campus. A last-minute sort of thing, sure, because Jack Kissinger's play was supposed to go up tonight, but nobody else could pull it together after he died. But Shebop's worth the freezing walk, another chug of Diet Rockstar and rum, and a few hours of your time.
Shebopaleileigh is a real-world, high-character, low-plot dramedy for nine theatrical LARPers and three improv comedians, soaked with caffeine and desperation. Because everybody needs a good laugh during finals.
"The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want..."
- the Shebopaleileigh Improv Troupe
Shebop is a crazy little experiment of a game that, all things considered, went off pretty well. Tory's probably trying something vaguely certifiable with the central conceit of the game, which she considers a Horrible Spoiler and will not discuss further, but the players seemed entertained by it, even if aspects of the execution were flawed. And those aspects have largely been cleared up in the second draft of the game.
The current version of Shebopaleileigh, version 1.1, is a game for twelve players (three male, six female, three neutral) which runs for three to four hours, in one room, under the direction of one GM.
Version 1.0: April 4th, 2009, at the Brandeis Festival of the LARPs in Waltham, MA. Raw draft, much of it fairly hot off the press. Parts of the game went off very well, and parts didn't, as the group pretty much divided into two, one half of which had plot and fun, one half of which apparently recited the Pirates of Penzance to pass the time, and all of which provided opinions on how to fix this.
Photos of this game! Only a few, and they are small.
Version 1.1: November 13th, 2009, at the SFS Live Action Weekend in Worcester MA. The Pirates of Penzance, however entertaining, did not need to make an entrance, as the game held together in one room and went off quite well, despite one character not showing up until quite late in the game, when an observer kindly picked up the role from a player who couldn't make it.
Photos of this game! There are a lot of them, and some of them are pretty awesome.
No future runs are scheduled. Tory has a few more tweaks she'd like to make to this game, naturally, but some of her biggest concerns were either resolved in the second run or entirely unresovable.