Divine Intervention Exchange

 

We are happy to announce that we are partnering with another LARP in an Exchange just in time for our playtest!

Remember, if you NPC a LARP we have an exchange with or attend a Community Event we are a part of twice, you will receive one extra Between Game Action. Between Game Actions allow your character to interact more with the world between events. The more you participate with other LARPs, the more you’ll be able to participate in Ashwick Plantation.

Our second LARP to join us is Divine Intervention – another LARP from Be Epic! Divine Intervention begins this fall with their first event being September 1st-3rd. Events will take place at Camp Denison in Georgetown, MA. They welcome involvement from all be it as a player or a member of the cast.

You can join us June 10th in Wayland to help with their War Day as well!

For more info please visit any of their Website, Facebook, Forums, or email them at DivineInterventionLarp@gmail.com

From the creators:

Divine Intervention is Be-Epic’s fourth open invitation multi-year campaign. It is a Medieval Magepunk boffer larp focused on a central branching narrative arc that every player has the ability to interact with and impact through an even mix of roleplay, tactics based combat, and puzzle solving.

Lore:

Divine Intervention takes place in the fictional medieval magepunk world of Aukana. For centuries, the world of Aukana has been full of mundane nations warring, trading, and living. At different points, the Gods of the world –known as The Five– have been seen walking among the people, performing wonders and then disappearing in a flash again. Aside from that, however, Aukana was a simple place, its people just beginning to get a handle on stable society.

At least until nineteen years ago when, in an event that has become known as the Illumination, The Five granted humanity the gift of magic without warning. In an instant, every farmhand and lord on the planet could work miracles.

Society changed. Wars grew far more terrifying than ever before, new alliances formed, and humanity wondered if this Magic would last. But it remained, and with it the people of Aukana have begun taking the world into their own, now capable, hands and shaping it into one of prosperity for all.

Divine Intervention begins when the Five issue a decree: Come. Live with them. Learn. So that you might ensure the future of Humanity in the same place it began… within the Origin of Life.

Will you answer the Gods’ call?

Tone:

Divine Intervention is intended to be a game of grounded hope. Hope in progress and the future that humanity is capable of, grounded by palpable reminders of their own fragile bodies and minds as well as their fraught and messy past. This is a game in which small groups of people will be able to affect history profoundly but where the outcomes will always come with new non-binary complex questions.

Format:

Game will be divided annually into four weekend-long events taking place at Camp Denison in Georgetown MA. The first three events each year will primarily focus on the playerbase preparing for an expedition into what is known as “The Origin of Life”, during the final event of the year, in which many dynamics of regular play will be altered or inverted. These four event seasons, each ending in an expedition into the Origin, will continue along a fixed story arc expected to last between three to five years depending on player action.

Visit Divine Intervention’s Website. We hope to see you alongside us this weekend for our playtest and also in June at their War Day!

Gun Crafting

At Ashwick Plantation, we’ve heard crafters delight about making their own guns for our game. Schematics, tips, and photos of guns are some of our most asked for items when Ashwick Plantation is brought up. With that being said, we figured we should release something that will get the crafter in you excited for our upcoming events.

Check out our instructable for how to make a doglock musket for Ashwick Plantation: http://www.instructables.com/id/Ashwick-Plantation-Muskets/

The weapons will be wood stock blow guns using NERF darts as ammunition (with a slight surprise added for you at game) with PVC tubing for a barrel.

As for the doglock, one of the most interesting pieces of history we’ve found in regards to our game is that the late mid-late 17th century is a varied place where fashion, tools, culture, and yes, weapons are in a state of flux.

Fashion moved forward from the time of the first Pilgrims as merchant adventurers arrived with hopes of new wealth. The doublet and breeches began to go out of fashion in England, but it would last throughout King Phillip’s War among some in the colonies. Likewise, stays, petticoats, and headwear changed over the coming years.

Planes, chisels, and saws went through changes in size, durability, and style for woodworkers while the first thermometers and microscopes made medicine more effective.

Lastly, the Thirty Years’ War brought about changes in warfare. Doglocks replaced matchlocks and wheellocks, and flintlocks would soon replace the doglocks. For now, the doglock is king. Have fun crafting it!

Playtest Registration

Registration is open for Ashwick Plantation!

We’ve updated the Registration page for our events to allow you to register for our Spring playtest. May 6th is our first playtest, and we can’t wait to see you all there. We would like to get a rough estimate of who will be able to attend so we can prepare enough elements for everyone to be involved.

The playtest is absolutely free and will begin at 1pm and end at 6pm. Food will not be provided.

Attendees will not be expected to be in colonial garb, however, if you have attire for the event, we would be thrilled to have you in-costume for the playtest.

We will have the incredibly talented Jon Washer on site for photography and video prior to and during the event, and we ask that you check out our Waiver Page to look over our photography release and liability release forms. Agreeing to these forms online will help facilitate the registration at game quicker and make the process a whole lot easier and so we can get to gaming as soon as possible.

For now, head on over to the registration and waiver pages and let us know we’ll be seeing you in May!

Character Point Exchange

A major part of our LARP experience is created by the people that surround us. With that in mind, we wanted to talk about our Character Point (CP) exchange opportunities.

 

If you NPC a LARP we have an exchange with twice or attend a Community Event we are a part of twice, you will receive one extra Between Game Action. Between Game Actions allow your character to interact more with the world between events. The more you participate with other LARPs, the more you’ll be able to participate in Ashwick Plantation. Throughout the entirety of Ashwick Plantation, we intend to have exchanges with multiple LARPs to give you plenty of opportunities to enjoy many different styles of play.

 

The first LARP that we have partnered with is Ballad – a time travel LARP starting March 31st. Ballad is part of Be Epic, a LARP company that has brought to life the worlds of Steam and Cinders, Second Dawn, Lacuna Cathect, and 420.

 

http://balladlarp.com/#/

 

Ballad will run as five weekend-long (Friday night – Sunday afternoon) events spaced out over the course of Spring to Fall 2017. Events will take place at Camp Denison in Georgetown, MA.

 

Their first event is March 31 – April 2.

If you would like to join us and want to help Ballad, please email them at balladlarp@gmail.com

 

From the creators:


Ballad is a heroic time-travel larp. Heroes will be from the modern day, and – much to the heroes surprise – an unavoidable danger to the past will pull them away on a dire quest to save other times, and perhaps even their own. Ballad is about working together to protect the timeline and the people the heroes meet in each setting.

 

The first event is set in Camelot, and every subsequent event will take place in a different interesting time and place.


Ballad is meant to feel like a successful Dungeons and Dragons campaign– heroic, a little campy, challenges to overcome, but with characters that genuinely matter to each other. Ballad is inherently collaborative– from the hook, it’ll be apparent that players need to work together to solve the challenges that face them.

 

Ballad will have combat: we aim to have many fights include puzzle elements. Logical puzzles will be incorporated into mods and similarly, physical puzzles (like a 3D puzzle or metal puzzle) will be featured. Historical roleplay challenges and heist mods will be featured and players will find themselves having to take command of various NPC groups.”
From all of us at Ashwick Plantation, we can’t wait to see you all, March 31st at Ballad!

Community

When we began this endeavor, there was one word that came up consistently when talking about starting a new venture in LARP: community. At Ashwick Plantation we are attempting to create a community that cares about its participants but also cares about the other LARPs and LARP-adjacent communities as well. As we are still over 12 months from our first true event, we are focusing this year on community building.

 

The next step in fostering our community is cementing our mailing lists. This might seem like a simple logistical chore, but it isn’t. It is one of the first steps in establishing a community by providing everyone with the same message and ensuring players, NPCs, and staff are on the same page. This is extremely important in regards to expectations, and especially so in LARPs that deal with the ethical concerns of our genre and time period.

 

If you are interested in joining Ashwick Plantation, we highly suggest you check out our Contact Us page to sign up for our mailing lists for NPCs and Players alike.

 

We said we are looking at a full year focused on community, so here’s a sneak peek at the next few months.

 

We plan on releasing a forum for you all to share ideas and to keep announcements better organized. We will also be featuring our first CP Exchange and go into details about how exchanges work within our ruleset. We wouldn’t be upset if you began guessing at who will be the first to get an Ashwick Plantation endorsement, but we also don’t intend to divulge that secret just yet. Some of you have been paying attention, though…

 

Further, we have multiple events planned leading up to our playtest. First, a crafting event where we will help instruct on costuming and crafting (perhaps even a schematic might be given out). Second, a clean-up / walk through of the Salem Pioneer Village. We all know how winter and early spring can affect a site, and we want to assist the Pioneer Village in any way possible. It will also help people get a first look at this new location for LARPs.

 

There are other plans we have, but they are much further down the line or necessitate a bit more secrecy, so mum’s the word for now. As we gear up for the beginning of LARP season, we feel it is most important to stay connected.

Head on over to the Contact Us page and join our mailing list to ensure you never miss a beat!

Durability and Upkeep

With the release of our rules, the items we’ve had the most questions about was durability and upkeep. Durability is the fortitude of your tools; upkeep is the measure of your character’s personal well-being. You may have multiple items that have a durability cost, but you will need only pay upkeep for yourself.

 

For our game, we wanted the economy to create hard choices for players that would simulate the hardships of surviving 17th century New England. How do we show that people survived through bad harvests? Repaired their shoddily built homes after a blizzard? Worked enough to feed their sick children?

 

Creating an upkeep system facilitates this superbly. The four coins you spend at the start of each game symbolizes the strain and labor of colonial times. It is how you bought that pig from the butcher, or for nails to fix your roof, or paid a local tailor to sew in a wool lining for your child’s jacket.

 

Upkeep creates conversations. If you have only three coins to the end of an event, what will you do to ensure your survival for the coming days? If you are wealthy, how will you spend your excess? Will you offer it to others or save up for higher quality items for your own family? For a favor or out of kindness or for God’s grace, perhaps?

 

Durability is used to show the degradation of tools. Constant repairs and replacements must be sought in the colonies. Copper and Zinc were hard to come by, so needles were a rare but necessary item. No needles; no sewing, and then your child has to walk in frigid temperatures with a hole in their jacket. Since the best lumber was shipped back to England, the colonists were typically left with lumber that was knotted or that warped easily. While the land was bountiful, it rarely was enjoyed by those who reaped it.

 

Durability is also used to make choices and bring out conversations between people. Do you want to pay the upkeep for your sword? Instead of paying the smith to repair your sword, you could sell it to them as scrap and make ot through winter, but what happens if another attack comes? How will you keep your family safe? Perhaps the mason will pay costs to keep your weapon in good condition, but what will they ask for in return?

 

Most weapons and armor will have a durability cost. You may begin your first event with as many weapons and as much armor as you please, but you will need to pay the durability costs by your second event.

 

One specific note, ammunition – arrows and bullets – have a construction cost like most items, but they have no durability cost. We want your ammunition to be limited, but understand it is cumbersome to keep track of arrows and bullets between games.

 

What are your thoughts on durability and upkeep? How do you see the economy affecting your ability to survive in Ashwick?

Rulebook

Today we have a special gift for all of you. Head on over to our Rulebook section and check out our first version of the rules.

 

Rulebook 0.1

 

Have questions? Leave your comments or send us an email at ashwickstaff@gmail.com!

 

From all of us at Ashwick Plantation, happy holidays!

Quiet Combat

Today is our final post in our series on “simple rules increase immersion.” We’ve talked about persistent locations directing you on how to interact with the game; we’ve talked about one single attribute to cover both your health and skills, and today we want to talk about what we describe as “Quiet Combat.”

Quiet Combat involves uncomplicating damage. Like most boffer LARPs in New England, we will have different types of damage. However, instead of calling “4 Damage” or “4,” we have static damage based on the type of weapon used. A melee attack is “1 Damage,” a ranged attack is “2 Damage,” and a firearm attack is “3 Damage.” You do not need to call your damage when swinging, only call out “Effects.” The reason for this is to have a quiet game, where calls and verbiage do not get in the way of the scene.

In daylight, you should be able to tell the difference between an arrow, dart, or melee hitting you. At night it will be tougher, however, we believe that many people shouting “5 Damage by Fire,” “3 Damage by Pain,” and “2 Damage by Electricity” constantly is just as confusing. Furthermore, the weapons used will be immersive, and our magic system is rather low, so it is less necessary for you to call “By Fire” or “By Fear” attacks. If you hit your opponent with a torch prop, they should react accordingly. If you are shouting intimidating words at them while you are in combat, they should react accordingly (granted they are actually afraid of what you say).

We want to be clear: our game does have combat calls. However, these calls are few, and they typically carry a cost to use those skills in combat. In a fight, you can only use as many skills as you have Essence, and mostly every time you are hit with an attack, you will lose Essence so you must be cautious about using skills.

This is intentional. If you are in combat and want to use a skill like “Disarm,” you must weigh the effect of the attack against your Essence. We want players in combat to know there is a risk to trying to “Disarm” someone rather than attempting to harm them. Perhaps getting someone to drop their weapon will allow you to sneak in a few extra hits, but is it worth the cost of Essence?

Let us know what you think about Quiet Combat in the comments below.

Persistent Locations

Last week we talked about one of our core tenets – “simple rules increase immersion.” Today, we’ll talk about another aspect of immersion in Ashwick Plantation: persistent locations.

Many LARPs utilize the town structure – a tavern, a shop, places for sleeping. At Ashwick Plantation we are attempting to take that idea a step further to further enhance players’ experience. We are weaving skills, the economy, and your refresh mechanic into the town in a seamless manner.

Want to pick crops using your Gardening skill? There is an actual garden on-site. Want to craft tools and weapons? Head to the era-authentic blacksmith to use your skill and put together that wheelbarrow you’ve been working on. Need to get a few cords of wood for the next shipment going out or to simply stay warm for the winter? Bring your axe and make your way into the woods. It’s safe out there, right?

Unfortunately, we can’t have you out there with real steel axes cutting down trees, but we intend for these areas – the garden, the blacksmith, etc. – to replicate a truly immersive experience that will make the game more enjoyable and realistic.

These locations will also be used for community building through interactions with people and the economic structure. Most events will take place during a ‘market day’ where travelers bring in their wares from near and far. Farmers come in with new crops; merchants stop by to barter, and craftsmen find work and ply their trade. The meeting area will be a place to trade local gossip and goods alike while the dock brings opportunities from around the world.

As we discussed last week, skills typically cost Essence. If you go out and cut down a tree, or spend time in the garden, or perhaps you were laying out traps to catch game, you use up Essence. To regain it, you must spend time at specific locations within the town where you can regain what you have lost.

In the schoolhouse, you can spend time reading the bible to contemplate the Holy Word and strengthen your soul. At the cemetery, you can grieve for lost loved ones who hopefully found their way to Heaven and lessen the weight upon your shoulders. At the pillory, you can shame petty thieves and other criminals to increase your vigor.

Yes, in many colonial towns and villages, a widely used form of punishment for crimes was ridicule. At Ashwick Plantation, it just so happens that there is a pillory on the premises, and we intend to use it. Who will be the first to bow their head to public humiliation?

So what do you think? Feel free to comment on how persistent locations help you get immersed in a LARP.

How do you intend to interact with the economy? Do you want to focus on Crafting? What about gathering skills like Logging and Trapping? Will you spend your free time at the pillory shouting at a criminal in an effort to help deter future crime, or will you sit quietly in the schoolhouse reading a chapter from the Old Testament?

The choice is yours.

Essence

Character Creation is simple in regards to stats: you have Essence and you have skills. Bonuses will be available for submitting your character a month in advance of your first event and working with us for determining your background.

Essence is the core attribute of Ashwick Plantation.

Essence measures your health. Every damage you take throughout an event reduces your Essence by 1. If you are reduced to 0 Essence, you begin “Bleeding Out.” We will have more information on “Bleeding Out” and our death mechanic in the future.

Essence also measures your ability to use skills. Most skills cost Essence to use. When you are reduced to 0 Essence, you can no longer use any abilities – whether they do or do not use Essence – until you regain at least 1 Essence.

Some game effects can Reset and / or Refresh exhausted Essence. Your Essence also Resets at the beginning of every event you attend.

We want to be clear: Essence does not measure your personal capabilities nor does it limit you to perform tasks that involve anything that is not tied to a skill. It is only a limit to the skills you can use. As an example, you are not limited in your ability to pick up heavy objects or run long distances, but you are limited in how many times you can use the Logging Skill before your character is exhausted.