Scapegoat Review

Note: This is just my opinion of the game. Everyone had a unique experience. I did not have a material connection to the game.

This was an incredibly unique, ambitious, and a groundbreaking event.

Imagine a world where a magical society exists in the shadows… of New York City nonetheless.

Scapegoat was the second chapter in this saga, with the first being Project Ascension which was run in New York City and Atlanta. This was the author’s first “pervasive” LARP – meaning that you had a schedule of events across the city, and your venue was the city itself.

Lore was crazy in-depth, leaving people arguing semantics and wondering motivations of players. Was he trying to become a god? Was she trying to create an AI that would rule over all of Enlightened Society? You had to know the things to spot to find the conspiracy.

New York City was incredibly cold. If you are unfamiliar with the city, it can be crazy expensive as well. The Subways are not accessibility friendly, and traveling around in day or night can be rough.

I played Kipling, an elder in society who left his former house in order to protect his lineage from being Scapegoated (or blamed for the mass murder of those who are part of magic society). Having staged a public breakdown, he wanted revenge on a former mentor for setting him up. This resulted in fun game moments of passing out flyers denouncing my former house, and silly memes being posted on Discord.

One of the memes we came up with…

Three main positives about this game:

  • The City of New York is your venue. That closed Carousel by the water, the High-line park that overlooks the streets, and even Broadway could all be points to meet up with others.
  • The Lore is incredible, and the basis for the story is amazing. There is so much literature, it could easily become a text book. So much thought went into the story for this, and if you looked hard enough you could find an answer somewhere.
  • Discord/Email/Facebook/The City were lively places. The Hype was real, and people were available at all times for any type of Role-play.
One of the beautiful places we saw in game.

Some things to consider:

  • Weather. It was super cold, and many venues were outside. More prepared indoor venues would be great.
  • The City. How do you take the subway? Where should you eat where it’s affordable? Are there places that aren’t safe? If you were in a wheelchair – forget about it (said with a New York accent).
  • Money. People didn’t plan for food and other things because they had never been to NYC before. Everything is more expensive in NYC, but some expectations on where to eat and what to expect money wise would have made a huge difference.
    • Here’s a rough breakdown of major costs:
      • 450 AirBnb
      • 140 Transportation to NYC
      • 400 Scapegoat Ticket Price
      • 80   Transportation
      • 110 Broadway Show
      • 320 Food
      • $1510 Total
  • New Player. Having not been to Project Ascension, I believe that this was a major drawback for me personally. There were two games being played, Project Ascension 2 and Scapegoat – and my character was forcibly in both. This left me feeling unsure and uneasy. The information for the previous game was out there though – I just didn’t prioritize time for reading up on it.
  • Time. Going back to being a New Player, I thought that I would be able to pick up a bag and jump on a train and go. This wasn’t the case. There was so much information out there. And this information is what made you an asset in game – understanding the society, what was happening, etc. With Scapegoat, you got:
    • A 53 Page Player’s Guide.
    • An hour safety video and quiz.
    • A Discord Channel with 36 sub channels (for me personally – yours could vary). Many of these including specific LORE documents about things like Technomancy, the Treaty of 1919, the Scapegoat of 1984, the Path of Flesh, Lineages, etc.
    • 47 Email Updates from the Staff.
    • A house virtual get-together (best hour I spent in preparation!)
    • A 9 Page Finalized Character Sheet (First select from 3 Character Concept options, then get a Draft, then get an Initial Sheet, then get your final Sheet)
  • Comfort Levels. There were several events that were completely sexual based. This was an adult event, through and through.
  • Secrets. When the foundation of the event is built upon secrecy, and knowing things your currency, it can be a challenge to keep people inviting others and engaging potential outsiders.

For more, similar events, visit our info on Sinking Ship!

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