Sunday, 21 September 2014

Setting up a common armoury or newbie stash or however you call it.

At a certain point, I should say above a certain number of people - a larp group grows beyond the point where you know everybody and can pay attention to everybody. There would also be a sort of population boom - the bigger it is, the more folks will start coming.

Now what I'm going to argue about is the benefits of setting up a common armory with spare kits for the new guys. Lets be reasonable most of them start with nothing. You don't want folks with jeans and T-shirts and we've grown beyond the point where everybody is everyone's friend who'd teach him how to craft his stuff. Not to mention there are a lot more new guys so time and money and effort becomes an issue. A lot of groups have loaner kits - just a sword and(maybe) a tabard or tunic. I'll argue about taking this a bit further. Let's talk about setting a common armory.

  And by Armory, I don't mean just clothes and some weapons - I mean everything! Weapons, clothes, armor, shields and basic equipment. Here in Sofia, I keep the main common armory and it occupies much of the attic. Yes yes, the person dealing with it will need space. He will also need some help, at least in the start - be it with extra hands or money or old equipment nobody needs(for now). 

What are the cons? Well, its time consuming and definitely a resource drain. Often the task is not appreciated by others as well. Keep in mind to always remind people that you are not a charity or a given benefit.

What are the benefits now? They come three-fold.

1st - much less immersion breaking jeans and T-shirts in games.Even new guys will be able to blend in easily and play without gear related limitations from the start.
2nd - the above mentioned fact will keep a lot of people in the hobby, that would otherwise just give up and go before they pick up the basics. By allowing them to try out stuff for free - they can decide exactly what they want to play and how to equip themselves.
3rd The extra gear does not have to be newbie only. For example the tolkien game from the previous post.
By providing equipment from the common armoury - I made sure that the Gondorian tower guard actually looked like god damn Tower Guard from Minas Tirith.

Our orcs(plenty of first timers among them) looked like proper orcs! Yes I used up a lot of scrap leather and canvas and bones but its ok.

If necessary I could have equipped a few more gents. The point is that the spare kit does not have to be junk. It can be good quality stuff that can be used by game organizers when they need to give a faction the look that it requires so that they are believable.

One thing I don't advice is giving away consumable items arrows - arrows are lost way too easy by inexperienced archers.