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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

What These Guys Did/Final Notes (F.F.O. LARP)

[If I slip on the gender neutral pronouns, it's because I'm remembering the game as played. Apologies.]

General-

One of the reasons LARPs can be such a valuable lesson for a writer who's paying attention is because the characters completely drive the plot. If I ran this LARP with all the same characters and plot ten different times, I would get ten different results.

In general the players really rallied and blew away the plot. Every character had equal "power" over determining how the lunar fissure might be averted or not, but there were about half a dozen characters who were less committed to averting it at the outset, so convincing them to overcome their primary motivation was definitely a part of the internal drama.

It wasn't so much a question of would the characters passively like to not be genocided by a giant chunk of moon (most of them were not eager for that fate), but rather what would they be willing to give up for just the chance to make that happen. A career? Their lives? Duty? Love?

There were three main groups, working on the future by the end of the game:
  • A consortium of characters got together and started a human/Android corporation, ostensibly for the mining of Helium 3, but also eventually to offer the technology that would merge humanity and Androids into a single race that could switch back and forth between biological or synthetic bodies through transhumanism.
  •  A political military alliance was hammered out making Luna colony a sovereign nation. The generals and politicians were fully dedicated to making it happen.
  • And Paris managed be the charismatic leader they were and gather up enough resources to make the ARK project a pragmatic reality. They basically pulled 

The end result was the power blocks they represented ended up at war with the United States for the sake of not only Android self determination, but reunification. And while it looked like the US could have handily won, when two of the top ranking generals defected before a shot was fired to join the resistance the battle started to drag out. When the Androids/resistance discovered an almost inexhaustible supply of energy, it was only a matter of time. After only two years of fighting, the US surrendered to the EU/Android alliance.

Of course the one person who could have stopped easily stopped a EUR to commit to a war was Uriel. However Uriel (fortunately?) was far more interested in getting on the ARK ship and off of Earth. In fact, most of the characters who would have objected and "changed the fate" of such a good ending, seemed more interested in getting off the planet.

With reunification being a given, the idea of uploading humanity into immortal Android bodies bridged the gap of bigotry and ushered in the next stage of human evolution. Basically, there in my LARP, the players worked out the singularity. BAM.

Specific Characters

I'll have to hit the highlight reel here (because it would take WAY too long to talk about every single character and their own struggle against their fate), jbut if anyone who played the game wants to add in some details in the comments, they would be most welcome.

Avery- Did not really overcome their fate. They ended up continuing to work for humanity while waiting for the day they could really help out Androids....in perpetuity.

Reese- Likewise did not really overcome their fate and ended up being a murderbot in the next conflict....and the next one....and the next one.

Mishka- Became the premier general of the resistance and went on to be the head of the Earthforce military

Eren and Harper ended up together since Eren joined the resistance and no longer said the things that made Harper want to kill them.

Tohru and Boipelo ended up married, a wedding ring appearing on their fingers as the timelines resolved. Boipelo revealed that they were an Android as a gesture of good faith, and had to go underground during the war, but after it was over, they found their reelection was overwhelmingly supported, and became the first known Android to win a Senate seat.

Casey- Did not OD on heroin, since the moon disaster was averted, but not having overcome their weakness, they also couldn't remember the epiphany that led them to be able to send a message in a bottle to the past. (Which could have been a useful thing to recall.) A true paradox since how did they change the past if not for that epiphany?

Kai- This player went after the idea of their flagging life enthusiasm with a vengeance and came up with a really unique solution for an algorithm that "degraded" memories that had less emotional impact. In this way he was able to solve the problem of android apathy as the quest for a memory that wouldn't eventually fade drove them to realize their ambition. (He was basically the keystone in the transhumanism part of the overall plot solution.)

Paris and Uriel sank all their fate-changing mojo into the ARK project and left Earth as soon as they had a colony ship that could viably do so (and that wasn't a hail Mary). Humans without transhumanism are out there on another world. (Possible fodder for a sequel.)

Salih- Went down the spiral of their weakness and ended up "going native." Eventually they installed a mortality program so that they could experience the ultimate human condition.

Imari- Had a mixed result and ended up struggling perpetually on the edge of social justice issues. Never feeling like enough progress had been made to relax. Always feeling like there was so much further to go.

Valentine - Had a difficult time overcoming their fate and ended up always vaguely disquiet about their position between two worlds.

Dakota- Completely embraced their weakness to overcome their fate and ended up having a press conference where they blew the whistle on a number of U.S. lies about Android relations.  They were fired of course, and as their time line merged, they saw their family on the couch, but playing and telling them "You look upset. Are you okay?"

2 comments:

  1. Brilliant!

    My work has a social committee, and it looks like I might be running this sometime next year...

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    Replies
    1. I'll be very interested to hear how it goes.

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