A Game for New LARPers: Lost Colonies

Any experienced LARPer has been there. Bringing a friend who is completely new to LARP to their first game. Below is what it generally is like (but not for Lost Colonies players):

I could see the frustration on their face, as we talked about the rulebook, game dynamics, what they needed to bring, and how the world operated overall. There were so many questions – legitimate questions. The game had been great everytime I attended, but I couldn’t respond to my friend who was trying it for the first time, with “everything will fall into place when you get there” or “wait and see”.

To an experienced player in the world, everything made sense. But to someone new to the game, understanding the lore, world, mechanics, and so much more was just formidable.

– Based on a real world situation, where I invited a friend to a game.

I’ve seen a spectrum of LARP websites, interacted in a number of game communities, shaken hands with countless organizers, and attended my fair share of events. Each of them has their own positives and drawbacks that will either bring people back, or have them running for the hills.

As a new player to many games, I’ve experienced first-hand the debacle of walking into a new world and expecting to feel like a part of it. Sometimes I’ve been successful, other times I’ve fallen flat on my face.

Taking a look at Lost Colonies Larp, a game located central to the Maryland/Virginia area, I instantly recognized how friendly it was to people who were new to LARP or the game in general. It seemingly has the perfect recipe for a new player (or new to LARP even) solution.

The Website

If you visit their website, you will instantly see how their website is based around solutions for new players. The page greets you with a short summary about the game, and then addresses common questions, like:

  • What is Lost Colonies Larp?
  • What is an event like?
  • What is the game rated?
  • How accessible is the site and game?
  • What are the mechanics like?

The other big thing that I love about their website, is their event information. They offer insight into getting there, warn you that cell phone reception is spotty, provide the wifi password, tell you where to park, and even provide a schedule so that you know how the game flow is. They address food, NPC shifts, and even provide a packing list. It’s incredibly thorough.

A snapshot from their website (lostcolonieslarp.com)

The People

I’m a big believer that the community makes the game. Lost Colonies has a vibrant Facebook following, as well as a Discord channel (which I have personally not yet used). If you go to their site, you can easily see what’s new in the game, and its friendly enough where you can make a post introducing yourself as a first time player and receive lots of warm greetings (going to game knowing at least one person, even digitally, is awesome).

Taking a scan over their Facebook page, I saw a lot of hype around a local convention called BFG Con. The group is running some content and having a booth there in recruitment efforts. This resounded well to me, because in a true community, friendship extends outside of game as well. Knowing that they can pull together a group for a convention is an awesome sign.

Conclusion

Lost Colonies Larp has the perfect combination to win with new to LARP or new to the game players. In just a few months, I’ll be on my way to trying my first Lost Colonies game. Thanks to the wonderful resources they’ve provided, I can honestly say that I am incredibly comfortable with the whole process. I know where I’m going, what I’m doing, and even the wifi password.

The players and staff seem incredibly friendly, and I can’t wait to see what else makes this game stand out.

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