Play Journal LEA vol. 5 – The End of LEA, the Start of Knutepunkt

by Thom Kiraly

Wednesday: This being the day after our game was premiered, not many fucks were given. At least not by me. This also means: not many games were played. Instead, I went to a Café and Laundromat. They were the same place. This place had wifi. I wrote in my Play Journal.

Danish Clapping – There’s always time for some Danish Clapping, isn’t there? This time, I played before leaving to see the Nordic Larp Talks. I had the pleasure of playing it with someone who instantly became super stressed and nervous by it, resulting in the person laughing hysterically. Ah, the things this simple game does to some people.

Oh, and I probably played some Super Hexagon too.

Thursday: Left Oslo and LEA (Larp Exchange Academy) for Haraldvangen and Knutepunkt 2013. Used the spotty wifi before leaving to download two games which I had a very short time to play on the bus to Knutepunkt.

Alpaca Evolution – Found this through a This Week in Videogame Blogging post and I must say that it is one of the stranger things I’ve spent time with in a while. Here, have a tiny screenshot:

Alpaca Madness!

I really don’t know what more to say, other than: It’s free, it’s unlike most other things I’ve played, and you should just look it up and play it.

The Other Brothers – Seriously, I only managed to play like ten minutes of this before we arrived. The rules, however, are the rules and since I played it, I should at least mention it. Will write more when I actually try it out.

^^^This line signifies a break. I am no longer writing about my play experiences at LEA. I am now at Knutepunkt. Mmmk? Mmmk.

The Neighbors – The opening game of Knutepunkt was a version of a Fastaval Grind Night scenario, modified to be played as a short larp with eight players. The two words following the word Fastaval right there? Grind Night. Yeah, they should probably say it all… But since they don’t, I’ll try to fill in some blanks.

Since this was a game set up to be played by practically everyone attending Knutepunkt, the group creation was pretty random and most people were just thrown into groups rather randomly. This was a good thing. You’ll have plenty of time to hang out with your friends later, you know. Let’s just play and get it over with.

A quick word about the characters. Due to the situation, they weren’t all that fleshed out, but they were extreme enough to want to kill each other in the end (which was the whole idea). There were four couples in the neighborhood: The weird psychos, the paranoid passive-aggressives, the rules nazis, and the obnoxious rule-breakers. I played one half of the weird psycho couple.

The play of the scenario itself was amusing enough, but I think our group’s main problem was that we did too much planning before jumping into scenes. Having a few very enthusiastic players in a group is often a good thing, as long as they listen to each other and to the GM. The GM, at least in this game, has a big responsibility to for example cut scenes, set scenes, direct play etc. and if the players are constantly preempting this by “playing before they play” there’s really not much use for a GM.
Thus, we suffered somewhat from chaotic planning of play (which is not as enjoyable as chaotic actual play) and reaching cool conclusions before scenes were even started.

It was funny how easily I fell into playing the part of a weird psycho. The way my partner played helped a lot, and I was happy to find someone I could riff off the way I ended up doing. Also, the scenario encouraged a gonzo playstyle, which I have no problem going for, if I’m allowed to.

In the end, my character died laughing maniacally. I was happy with that.

As an amusing side note, this game had me playing in the same group as someone I hadn’t met since around 2004. That’s nine years. It was a nice reunion. Made me like the random match-up even more.

Oh and BTW, and I probably played some Super Hexagon too.
Yes, this whole Super Hexagon thing is actually going somewhere.
Stay tuned.