LARP Character Packets

Tangentially linked to a previous post, in which I mentioned how I like to include some kind of purse or bag along with my costumes in order to avoid carrying around big yellow manilla envelopes, or free floating packets of character history and blue sheets. Not every costume has large pockets, or pockets at all.

At Intercon, I played a LARP with a fantastic take on all of the player paperwork in a typical theater LARP. Port Hidalgo, a swashbuckling LARP set in the Golden Age of Piracy. It had rather extensive histories for every character- mine was, I believe, 7 pages of rather small print, and that was just my character’s personal history. There were also multiple blue sheets detailing various events the character had witnessed or been part of, not to mention the extensive history of the setting.

All of this was printed in two nice, neat little covered booklets, each about the size of a quarter of a page. And our cards were hole punched and set on loose-leaf rings.

The booklets were perfectly sized to keep in pockets (or just tuck into belts), and more subtle to flip through than stapled sheets of paper.

The loose-leaf rings bore our contingency envelopes and item and ability cards. The latter were a lot easier to look through (just flip through them; no digging around in pockets for the right card) and the former required no actual envelopes to tear open. They were folded, with the holes punched through all of the folds, keeping them closed until you were ready to pop them off and read them.

Minor conveniences? Yes. But they added up. Loved it.

Link to the program used for the Port Hidalgo booklets:

Quote from the GM: “It can be fussy to set up and get going, but the end results are generally worth it.”

Bit expensive…  Still… if one runs many LARPs, probably worth the one-time expense.

Side note, the Intercon con booklet is made with Microsoft Publisher, and printed at Staples.


About Fair Escape

I've been LARPing for years in all different styles, including both boffer and theater. I love classic LARP but I'm always happy to try something new. I have a sort of "gotta catch 'em all" attitude towards experiencing LARPs. I'm currently serve as a board member of NEIL, a member of proposal com for Intercon, the largest all LARP convention in the US, and as en editor for Game Wrap, a publication about the art and craft of LARP. I was also con chair of Festival of the LARPs 2017, and I'm on staff for NELCO, the first all LARP conference in the US. I'm
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2 Responses to LARP Character Packets

  1. pkelleyfoo says:

    Came across your post while wasting time on the internet. With all due lack of modesty, I have to agree about the rings, and have no idea why I’ve never seen anyone else ever do it. (Bought a box of 100 years ago, and even with game-run attrition I haven’t run out yet.) I can’t take credit for Clickbook — Dig and Gail Freedman had an article advocating it in an ancient, ancient metagame. (Additional Budget Justification: get your character sheet for games you are in early, and make your own booklets . Other players will be jealous.)

    A last point, Port Hidalgo takes a serious lot of time to print, fold, punch, staple, and assemble.. which is an ideal time to pop in a very familiar DVD, turn on the audio commentary, and find out Fun Facts to Bemuse your Friends with. (Why the air fresheners in Repo Man? And who needed to get their parking validated when they helped Weird Al with the commentary on UHF?)

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