Tuesday, April 24, 2012


A lot of LARPers have been playing for a long time.  They've seen so much and heard so much.  They've experienced highs and lows, both IG as their characters and OOG in the community.

So it's no surprise that so many people end up jaded.

Hell, I myself am jaded when put into certain situations.  I often have to take a step back and ask myself why I'm getting all worked up or upset about something that often has no real bearing on me.

This post is a response to something I noticed at Exiles.  I'm not saying these people are bad people in any way, but we have a few players who are known for being jaded at NERO.

But you know what?  You would never know that by playing Exiles with them.  Having them around was a blast.

This clearly indicates to me that it's a problem with a particular community rather than a player themselves.  If someone is mistreated too many times, or has the goals that he has for a LARP game (immersion, gamist, storytelling) broken too many times, that player is more likely to become jaded.  LARP communities have the same problems as any other community, such as gossip, cliques, and the like.  We people stop acting decent to each other, players get jaded.  

The obvious solution is just to start being nice to each other.

So next time you see a player who's jaded, just be aware that there's a good chance that there's a reason why they're jaded.  And if your particular game breeds jaded players, then maybe a holistic look at the health of that community is in order.  

Oh yeah, and do your best not to be a dick.


  1. You can't tell me what to do!

  2. I could not agree more Bill. It is so easy to get caught up in the debate of the day or the latest drama and then take it from discussion to being a dick. I am making a concerted effort to revert back to my old motto of don't be a dick, I hope I am succeeding to some degree.

    But yes, a lot of it comes from the day in and day out stresses of being involved in a community that has many negatives connected to it, stepping back and remembering why we all met in the first place is a much needed relief.

    You can jade yourself by getting too involved and making it too personal too. So here's to just enjoying games with people that share a common interest!

  3. When WotC secret shopped NERO ten or so years back, one of their comments was how surprised they were by the attitudes of some players and how those attitudes varied from chapter to chapter. In one chapter a player could be a jaded ass, but they were surprised to find the same player with a much better attitude in another chapter.

    It's just more evidence of how important it is to build a community with your game.

  4. I suspect any of us who've been at it for more than a couple of years fall into this, whether it is ourselves becoming jaded by our interactions in a given game/network, or seeing it in those we LARP with.

    I really wonder if kindness to the jaded will really solve much, unless it had been deliberate unkindness that engendered the jaded sentiments. Niceness or not, if a player has a grievance, perhaps there is a point of demarcation wherein they're best off seeking (or starting) another game?

  5. The theory isn't that niceness will fix jaded players. It's that niceness can prevent it.

    That, and being nice to each other is just an all around good idea.

  6. People should just be groovy to each other. Makes everyone have more fun.

  7. Talkin' about me, aren't you?

    Feh, I say to you!

    ~goes to find a table to flip~

  8. Be excellent to each-other!
    -The Wyld Stallyns

  9. Eh, truth be told, I think about half of the Exiles players are NERO jaded.

  10. To the general idea, I present this:

    To the nero specific idea, I present Mark Twain:
    “The cat, having sat upon a hot stove lid, will not sit upon a hot stove lid again. But he won't sit upon a cold stove lid, either.”

  11. Another consideration to add to jadedness...
    A lot of awesome players can go along with LARP problems (nastiness, cliques, cheating etc.) well enough, ignoring it the entire time. However, sometimes real-life, say losing a job or family problems, hits an individual really hard. And the stuff IG, that they used to brush off before, really becomes a problem. And they become jaded. No one can really prevent or fix this, but, as you said, if a good community is already in place, it's going to help the person in question.

  12. I think that most of the jadedness in Nero is rooted in the communities themselves. Its a snake eating its own tail. In many chapters it seems that the new players are indoctrinated against the veterans, being told that "Those are the douchey powergamers who don't care about the story. You don't want to be like them. You want to be like us, The Real Roleplayers." So the new players are bitter towards the veterans from the start, and the vets reciprocate this animosity right back at them. When a newer player gets beaten in a fight, they think/say, "Wow, that guy wooped me. He must only care about fighting, like they said! What a jerk." When they find out what level you are they think/say, "Wow, he's WHAT level? That's bullshit. I'm only 1/10th that. He must have cheated SOOO hard to get that." Then of course the flip side of that is that the veterans think, "All of the locals and newbies around here look at me like I'm a powergaming cheater. Eff these guys. They have no idea how to play or what the game is supposed to be."

    Contrast that with a game that teaches their players to be welcoming to everyone regardless of level or play style, and the difference is astounding. The best example of this that I've seen was Nero Elkins. All the locals there were super friendly and welcoming and none of them seemed to hold it against us that we had high-level characters. It was a pretty tiny event but we thoroughly enjoyed it because everyone was really nice and we didn't feel looked down on.

  13. I think a good way to foster positive IG/OOG relations is to avoid PVP and keep the PCs united for PVE. This way you don't need to worry about how long you ally has been playing and how strong they are. If something plot puts out kicks your ass you can actually gain comradery with your fellow players ageist this antagonist. Were jadedness can form in PVE is when a player feels ignored.