I’m a LARPer. It’s spectacularly weird. It’s like Dungeons & Dragons meets camping meets improvisational theatre. You basically go out into the woods with a tent, camping gear, armour and foam weapons. You then play a character of your own design and history using a complex and intricate rule system alongside other players, and with plot written by a team of content creators and actors. It’s like living in a TV show. It doesn’t appeal to everyone, but almost everyone who tries it gets hooked.
It’s also the best hobby I’ve ever had. Tempest Grove is the Cape Breton franchise for Underworld LARP, a national organization that has been featured on Dragon’s Den Multiple Times. We’re pretty small and have just started our second year, but we get about 30 players per event. Our growth is among the fastest of the 10+ Underworld LARP guilds in Canada. The main guild, in Toronto, gets over 150 players per game.
I’ve also developed a character builder based on the Underworld LARP rulebooks. Once I’ve secured enough data through normal use I’ll be building up a series of machine learning algorithms to make suggestions for what skills players should next select.
I’ve done all of this for free because it helps make my hobby better, but have used it to grow & expand my skills whenever possible. I plan on also building a Facebook chatbot to answer questions about the rulebooks.