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Larp: The Trial of Lancelot
by Warren Tusk, Sarah Judd
For years Camelot has been falling into darkness. Now its greatest champion, in his passion, has committed a great crime against his king and against chivalry itself. Arthur and his knights must convene to decide what will be done -- and what will become of their shared dream.
King Arthur Pendragon’s court at Camelot is a home to glory. There has never been a greater assemblage of chivalric heroes, not anywhere in the world, than the ones who sit around the Round Table.
And yet a darkness spreads across Camelot. The court has been in decline for many years now. The morale of the knights is failing. Merlin, the great magus who once guided the king, has been trapped in the fairie-lands by a witch’s enchantment. Even the recovery of Christ’s sacred Grail has not been enough to set things right.
Some blame destiny. Some blame treachery. Some blame sin. But most people, if they are being honest, blame the confusions and contradictions that lie beneath Camelot’s spiritual heart.
The Round Table’s code of honor demands virtue. All different kinds of virtue, all at once, even when the different kinds conflict. Some knights lean one way, some another, but no one -- save, perhaps, for the king himself -- can be everything that Camelot demands he be. And that hollowness, that gap between the ideal and the reality, has taken its toll. It cannot last.
Now the darkness has been made fully manifest. Sir Lancelot -- the best fighter in Christendom, the king’s closest friend, the paragon of knightly excellence -- has been caught in squalid adultery with Queen Guinevere. It is treason, by the law, and certainly it is a blow to the heart of chivalry.
Arthur must render a verdict. He has called about him his best and most beloved knights, to advise him in this darkest hour.
His choices, and theirs, will shape the fate of the realm and of Arthur’s regime. And not only because the life of a great man lies in the balance. Here and now, by word and deed, they will determine which virtues truly define the spirit of the Round Table.
The Trial of Lancelot is a four-hour game for nine players. It is about the struggle for honor and virtue, the meaning of masculinity, and the great difficulty of being dedicated to a grand ideal.
All player characters are male, within a setting of classic medieval chivalry. If you don’t want to deal with that, you shouldn’t play.
Source texts contributing to the mythic canon of the game include: Historia Regum Britanniae; Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart; Escanor; La Morte d’Arthur; Idylls of the King; The Once and Future King; The Mists of Avalon; Camelot; Monty Python and the Holy Grail; Fate/stay night
- 9-player maximum