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Larp: What Price Human
by Derek Herrera and Hilary Umbreit
"Greetings, citizen! We are so happy to have you to join us on board Station Epsilon, here in high orbit over our beloved planet, Proxima Centauri! Together with the twenty-seven thousand other people who call this station home, we hope that you will find a place within our happy community!"
"We understand that it is sometimes difficult to meet that special someone, as your work quota and security clearance can make travel around the station inconvenient. This is why we'd like to introduce you to Virtua-Net, Station Epsilon's own Virtual Reality Social Nexus. On Virtua-Net, you can make new friends, go to the movies at one of the seven Virtual Trideo Cinemas, shop at the Virtual Malls along an exact replica Lake Geneva from Old Earth or have a night on the town at one of the many Virtua-Net nightclubs and flesh bazaars! Here at Virtua-Net, you can be the person you've always wanted to be!
Sign up and create your very own Virtua-Net persona today! On Virtua-Net, you can be the person you were meant to be!"
Welcome to Virtua-Net!
As members of the Virtua-Net community, you all are in search of something within this seemingly-anonymous social network. For every one of you desperately seeking human connection and meaning in your lives, another of you hopes to avoid the banality of your seemingly-mundane existence. In a world where people use avatars to interact, how much value can you place on human connection? How badly would you fight to maintain that virtual facade, if the alternative is for the world to see the real you? Would you kill or die to protect the virtual life you've created for yourself? What price are you willing to pay to preserve your definition of what it means to be human?
About What Price Human
This LARP will center around characters who inhabit a virtual reality social network. As such, we will touch on a lot of social issues that we deal with today in our internet-centered world, such as social disconnect, paranoia, loss of moral values, depression and the overall degradation of the social condition. As situations in the story arise, you will search for connection and trust within your small virtual community. In some cases, you may have to shed your virtual persona and own to the reality of your life. In others, you may have to trust your life to someone you've never met in person. How far are you willing to go to form and protect a community of people who live behinds masks? Are virtual friendships any different than real ones?
This game will use very few mechanics, none of which have time-duration or math requirements. Our goal is for characters to tackle situations with their issues at the forefront of their thoughts. The biggest obstacle you will encounter during this game is each other. If you decide to set aside all of your issues and cooperate openly and freely, with no judgment or concern for each others' troubled past, you can likely wrap up this game in an hour. This would hardly be fun and would not portray the story we are trying to tell. We trust you all to be the best players you can be, so we will not put any artificial pacing restrictions in place. You can resolve the story as fast or as slow as you desire. How the story develops is entirely in your hands, within the scenario we've created.
Thank you for considering "What Price Human." In a world where the glamour of virtual reality often overshadows real life, what does it really mean to be you?
- 12 to 24 players