Archive for the ‘LARP’ Category

OgreCave Audio Report 2.0 – January 2015

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

OCAR 2.0 logoIn our first show of the new year, we’re already covering a lot of ground. In just the first half of the podcast, we go from Allan’s first impressions of Dungeons & Dragons: Fifth Edition to Mike’s obsession with space games, and back around to enjoying Magic: The Gathering after many years of abstinence. Then we drag out a pair of surprise gaming artifacts, speak of upcoming conventions, and more.

Click here for show details and to listen to the new episode. As always, share and enjoy. We’ll have a report on the happenings at DunDraCon 2015 in our next episode.

OgreCave video: DunDraCon promo

Friday, January 23rd, 2015

For the Cave dwellers, the start of convention season is heralded by DunDraCon. Now that the annual gaming event and its impending awesomeness are nearly here, this seems like the time to premiere our DunDraCon promo video. Take it away, Sparky! (Be sure to subscribe on YouTube to see all of OgreCave’s video goodness.)

Gaming News Update podcast – Free RPG Day (KublaCon 2012)

Friday, June 8th, 2012

OgreCave newscasterWe’re getting the last bits of KublaCon 2012 out of our system at OgreCave by posting a podcast episode about Free RPG Day 2012. Since it’s coming up in just over a week on Saturday, June 16, you may be wondering what to expect from the annual event (now in its sixth year!). In this Gaming News Update interview, Aldo Ghiozzi of Impressions Advertising & Marketing (and Free RPG Day) talks about the influence of Kickstarter on this year’s giveaway offerings, how Queen of the Demonweb Pits nearly got reprinted, melting candy dice, and more. Nearly twenty companies – from Catalyst Game Labs and Fantasy Flight Games, to Goodman Games, Paizo Publishing, and Wizards of the Coast – are contributing free goodies this year. Wouldn’t you like to hear more?

Free RPG offeringsDon’t forget to visit OgreCave’s Facebook page to check out our KublaCon 2012 image gallery, and while you’re there, become a fan of OgreCave to hear everything that echoes forth from the Cave. Also, we’ve been podcasting off and on for quite a while now – check out our other KublaCon interviews, or scroll back to even older episodes we barely even remember anymore.

Dominion wins 2009 Diana Jones Award

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

Huzzah and congratulations. My game group played three consecutive games just last night; I’m pretty sure that’s a record for us. Dominion beat out multiple big-name nominees, which are listed over here.

Other news coming in via Twitter: lots of people hate lots of airlines.

2009 Diana Jones Award shortlist announced

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

This year’s nominees for the Diana Jones Award have been announced, and as always, they include a worthwhile assortment of game innovations. They also pit two Origins Award Best RPG nominees against each other again:

  • Dominion (Rio Grande Games)
  • Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition (Wizards of the Coast)
  • Jeepform (the Vi åker jeep collective:
  • Mouseguard (Archaia Studios Press)
  • Sweet Agatha (Kevin Allen Jr)

The winner (or winners – there’s been a tie before…) will be revealed on August 12th, the night before Gen Con begins.

Come Out and Play ’09 came and played

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

Another June, and once again, I’m somewhat annoyed that I didn’t get myself out to New York City to participate in Come Out & Play, the annual weekend festival of city-wide games that strike an odd balance between LARP, sport, and flash mob. Sprawling throughout Times Square, Central Park, Brooklyn, and even venturing into Grand Central Station (as you can read in this article), CoaP organized dozens of game events that ranged from board games with live pieces (players, not pigeons) to iPhone-enabled hide-and-seek games and scavenger hunts. Similar to some ARG events or certain LARP events at RopeCon in Finland, CoaP is the sort of event that could be set up in multiple cities nationwide, or worldwide even. If anyone made it out to CoaP this year, let us know how it went in the comments.

True Dungeon going big, spreading to whole Realm

Monday, October 6th, 2008

We’ve said all along that the convention event True Dungeon is a cool activity, but that it needs one thing to make it work: big conventions – without the hardcore gamer audience coming out to a convention ready to consume, the company’s profit model would crash. Well, next April, True Dungeon will hold its own convention of sorts, True Realm. Touted as a “gamer theme park that is open only two days a year”, True Realm will transform a 40,000 sq. ft. warehouse in Herrin, Illinois into multiple fantasy dungeons and a medieval city area. Tickets for the event go on sale October 18th, so anyone interested in living the dungeon-delving life for longer than a couple hours at Gen Con should visit the website and get the particulars.

Weisman gets new gig infiltrating physical world with old-timey modern-fantasy mecha

Friday, December 7th, 2007

Jordan Weisman, founder of FASA, has licensed the rights to MechWarrior, Shadowrun and Crimson Skies from Microsoft to his latest startup, Smith & Tinker.” S&T apparently aims to draw on the lessons of ARGs, the medium Weisman helped pioneer at his company 42 Entertainment, and carry them into the realm of Internet-connected real-world objects (in the form of games and toys). No announcement has yet been made that gets more specific than that. But if you put CS, SR and MW in a blender and poured the resulting paste all over a website, it would indeed look like Smith & Tinker’s.

True Dungeon gets yet more competition: get your Aliens on at Origins

Wednesday, June 13th, 2007

And now here’s TerrorWerks, “a fully immersive event” set in “the immersive enviroment of a massive space station.” Also, it’s immersive. But I kid! I am psyched to see more attempts at this. I don’t think I ever posted properly about this other thing at Gen Con, either: “Guardian 6 is an immersive live-action event in which you take on the mantle of an agent working for a secret agency. As a secret agent you will be sent on missions that will take you to different locations where you will interact with mysterious individuals.” Different locations, eh? It’ll be cool to see if distributing the event makes it more immersive or less… and my ARG experience tells me to bet on more.

Attention motorists: Perplex City is closed

Monday, June 11th, 2007

Yeah, I saw the news and didn’t post because it just made me unhappy. (Especially when people started asking, right there on the goodbye posts from the story team, if this was all a setup to the start of season 2. For some reason the jackassery of which the Internet is capable keeps surprising me.) Mind Candy has put the second season of the Perplex City ARG on indefinite hiatus, and everyone on the story team has left the company. Stony silence about the issue on Mind Candy’s corporate site, which is always a wwwwwwonderful sign, but there are various messages and discussions out there, and the PXC-focused sites do all have some in-story bits about the end.

So what’d we learn, kids? That tying your product to a $200K prize is a good way to have to keep doing it over and over, even if the product improves? (Wave 2 of the Season 2 puzzle cards will still be released, BTW.) That even a sucky story is a better purchase motivator than a delayed (and suckier) story?

(Postscript: Mind Candy is allegedly looking into doing an online-hybrid product in the vein of Webkinz and, yes, Bella Sara. I WARNED YOU)

Perplex City season 1 really, really over

Tuesday, February 13th, 2007

Yeah, you know the Cube, right? The one that’s worth 200 grand? Some English guy found it.

[This exciting account of the find doesn’t quite explain how the general area to search in was deduced, but once it was, the solve essentially came down to one card. A common, even. Also, cards for Season 2 have been solicited to retailers.]

True Dungeon truths for ’06

Tuesday, April 4th, 2006

The lowdown on True Dungeon‘s gameplan for 2006 has been announced, along with a video peek of the enhanced adventure for this year, Escape from the Spider Cult. The massive live dungeon-crawl event will benefit from increased volunteer training, improved props and environments, and 5.1 stereo surround sound. Other adjustments and improvements are in the press release (below), but one that may bite them in the ass is giving “dead” players the option to hang around and watch. Oh sure, you’ll heal her, but you wouldn’t heal me two rooms ago! Find another ride home, buddy!

Call for True Dungeon volunteers

Monday, March 20th, 2006

The folks at True Dungeon are gearing up for Gen Con 2006 already. While event specific information is promised in a couple weeks, the crew is looking for volunteers, who will get various levels of swag and other compensation (even a hotel room). Read the press release below if you’re inclined to lend a hand.

True Dungeon to expand at Gen Con Indy ’05

Saturday, November 27th, 2004

Easily the most lavish LARP-like game in the industry these days, True Dungeon is preparing for its west coast appearance at Gen Con SoCal next weekend. In an email update sent yesterday to fans of the game, Jeff Martin, president of True Adventures Ltd., said “The finishing touches are being put on an agreement where True Dungeon will greatly expand at Gen Con Indy 2005. The event will more than double in size, and it will move to the Grand Ballroom in the Marriott Hotel which is directly across from the Exhibit Hall.”

ARG: another acronym to embrace before it destroys you

Thursday, September 30th, 2004

Many of you likely know all about I Love Bees, the mysterious site the URL for which was flashed briefly at the end of an online trailer for Microsoft’s upcoming first-person shooter Halo 2. You may also remember the promotional online puzzle games that tied in with Steven Spielberg’s A.I., which games came to be known collectively as “The Beast” and whose community of players called themselves the Cloudmakers. Rich with game-world detail, convincing characters and sometimes-fiendish puzzles, these alternate reality games, or ARGs, are… well… basically just LARPs. I Love Bees recently took another step closer to LARPhood when it not only challenged players to find and answer pay phones being called by an in-game AI, but anointed the answerers of certain calls with membership in the “crew” of the AI’s lost spaceship.

One player is not happy. Eric Burns laments that the collaboration with strangers in real time that made his experience in the Cloudmakers so compelling will be weakened and eventually destroyed by this singling out of a few lucky players. But collective-detection to unlock a story is basically How to Host a Murder – you can keep fiddling with the puzzles and the means of revelation, but you can’t disguise the fact that, after all the fire and motion, you are still just waiting for the next piece of story to consume. A story is not a game. ARGs are now making the leap from that model to the model of Mind’s Eye Theater – by adding actual gameplay. So far, it’s just the game of Prisoner’s Dilemma; do you, the individual, stick with the group, or do you defect? Other games are possible in ARGs, and we will no doubt see more than a few of those possibilities soon. The question is whether going from the How to Host a Murder model to the model of today’s LARPs will come with the same loss of accessibility – and popularity.