Cracks in the Orb
A theater-style LARP in the world of Steven Brust's Dragaera novels
"It was in the reign of the 17th Athyra Empress, Cherova III--947 years before Adron's Disaster-- that the unusual events of the Ballroom Uprising came to pass. It was not the uprising itself that was unusual, for there would be unrest aplenty during that reign. The Ballroom, too, was not notable; there were, of course, many ballrooms within the Imperial Palace, and some of them even in use.
"What was perhaps, notable, was that when this ballroom was chosen as fortress to the sanctity of the Orb, there was already a ball in progress--the type of affair frequented by young ladies and lords of good birth, in which the rule of the evening is manners. That some of the ladies and lords would go on to play important roles in the history of the Empire, does not, of course, escape this historian's note."
Cracks in the Orb is a game of manners, romance, and military maneuvers for 20-23 players in the world of Steven Brust's Dragaera novels, at the intersection of a society event and an ongoing rebellion. It takes place roughly 400 years before the events of The Phoenix Guards, and features characters both new and familiar. Depending on your preferences, you can play a general commanding troops to quell the rebellion, a young noble looking for a spouse, or a little bit of both. In addition to Brust, the LARP takes inspiration from works such as Vanity Fair, Pride & Prejudice, P.G. Wodehouse's Jeeves stories, and other 19th-20th century novels/comedies of manners. No knowledge of any of this is required to play--just that you dig social and political plots in a high fantasy setting.
04 March 2014. I updated the rules and bluesheets as of the most recent run (at Intercon M). The next run will be at the Festival of the LARPs at Brandeis University; signups open tonight at 7pm.
15 November 2012. The first run was a success!--if I do say so myself. You can check out my recap here; or, for a more unbiased source, check out Fair Escape's Post-SLAW Report or Phoebe's SLAW 2012 Report.
Thanks go out to:
- My co-writer Bernie, who wrote and ran the wargame,
- The aforementioned author of Fair Escape, who played Noima and also made me nifty House banners
- Mel S (Dradia), who made cloaks for the members of the Guard units,
- My pal Jess M, who doesn't LARP, but made jewelry props for the game,
- my husband (who played Jehan), who bought me toner and kept me sane,
- Nat B of Alleged Entertainment, for writing Vellum, the cloud app I used to write and publish the game,
- Sarah J, for running SLAW,
- aaaand of course every single one of my wonderful