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WHAT SHOULD YOU BRING TO A LARP?

by Epic Armoury Unlimited

What to bring to a LARP?No matter the outdoor weekend LARP that you attend, there are several essential things you must bring to your roleplay event. This list goes beyond the self-evident essentials we all think about when LARPing. Such as how many swords and armor pieces do I bring, or how much beer and beef jerky do I need to get through a tough rainy weekend.

No this just a list of the bare essentials, that for some reason, we all seem to forget about when we go LARPing in the woods. Long-time adventurers know what I am talking about, and yet we still find veterans who have forgotten several items on this list.


1. HYGIENE

a) Deodorant – This is so important. It turns out you develop a rather horrible smell after running around in the woods like crazy for a couple of days. There might be a shower, but most of the time you're lucky if you can find a pond or a stream nearby. If you do find a natural body of water nearby, remember to use products that don't harm the environment while cleaning yourself.

b) Toilet paper – Alright. This one is essential, especially for those who have a sensitive gut. Your eating habits and sleeping habits will be off during the LARP – it will affect your stomach. Don't forget toilet paper. When crisis strikes, you will be so thankful.

c) Toothbrush and paste – Anything you need to keep yourself clean during a game. You're going to interact with other players, so make sure to brush your teeth – playing an orc is one thing, having orc breath is another.

d) Feminine hygiene articles – Always be prepared. Carry extra and bags to discard the used ones.

e) Soap – Great idea. An easy way to keep you clean and your hands-free from bacteria when it's time to eat. Not cleaning your hands is like begging to get sick.


2. COSTUMING

a) Extra socks – This should be taught in school – If you're going outside for an adventure, bring extra socks. The terrain will get muddy if it rains, your boots might be waterproof but trust me, there will be proof of water inside them. The journey can have you pass through a stream of water or snowy mountains – that's the perfect recipe for wet socks. There's no sneaking with wet socks. Make sure to bring 2-3 extra pairs just in case.

b) Comfy Boots – Your feet will be tired. Make sure they get some rest. Wear something comfortable and dry when you're in character is essential to safe gameplay. Feet are often forgotten when equipping a character when in fact it should be first on the list.

c) Small pouch – Great place to keep your in-game belongings. But do not use it to put your wallet, phone, and keys! Every year people lose their personal belongings out on the battlefield. Searching a couple of acres for a pair of keys is not an easy task. Keep them in your tent.

d) Clothing – Pack a couple of pants and shirts. Changing costume to stay clean and dry should not be a luxury. Waking up in your tent the second day you'll thank yourself for packing another pair. Getting back into the dirty ones isn't fun. Remember that rain is always a factor and wet cloths can get you sick and send you into hypothermia.

e) Hat – Wear a hood or a hat to keep your head safe from the elements. It will keep e) the sun from your face, the rain from your hair and keep your head warm at night. It is another game essential against heatstroke.


3. MEDICATION/PHARMACEUTICALS

a) Sunscreen – Getting a sunburn through your armor is rather common. Most LARPers underestimate the intense power of the sun and end up with severe sunburn on exposed areas of the skin. Sunscreen can prevent burns and the weird patterns that will appear in your skin through your chainmail.

b) Bug spray – Mosquitos go crazy once the sun goes down, and so does the LARPing activities. Applying bug spray makes it easier for you, especially when you are creeping through the woods. You don't want to have mosquito bites on your body while wearing armor. Be careful, bug spray containing Deet will damage the latex on your props.

c) Contact lenses and solution – If you wear contact lenses during a LARP, make sure to clean them properly every night to avoid infection. Remember to wash your hands properly before handling them. Eye infections are no joking matter.
Medication – LARPing means that you are out at all hours of the day or night. Please remember to bring and take your prescribed medication. Your health is more important than a game.

d) First Aid Kit – Make sure you bring a first aid kit to any LARP event. Bumps and bruises are normal for any fighter but so are scrapes, scratches, and burns. Make sure to bring the essentials, like band-aids, sterile cleansing wipes, and peroxide.
Ibuprofen/aspirin – Don't let headaches stop you from enjoying your LARP event. Larpers tend to drink less water and eat unhealthy food. Larpers fight hard, run more, and do more than they usually would, and this change can cause headaches. One pill can make or break a weekend.


4. LODGING ITEMS/ITEMS FOR YOUR CAMP

a) Water & Food – After a long battle, water is the best choice to quench your thirst. Make sure you bring at least 2-3, 4-liter bottles with you to every event and pack in bags of nuts, energy bars, fruit, and dry fruit to give you the energy you need to quest. Some LARPs are lucky enough to serve both food and water in exchange for real money. But if you have a special diet, it might be wise to prepare and freeze your food in advance so you can eat quickly before going back into the game.

b) Duct Tape – Duct tape is a LARPers most dependable buddy and the best solution to most problems. Always bring a roll of duct tape to your event; it can repair a hole in your tent, fix armor and weapons and also serves as a quick silencer for Bards.

c) Something to sit on – A chair is the one thing most LARPers forget to bring to their events. All LARPers enjoy sitting around a campfire, and there is usually one or more who end up sitting on the damp soil. Remember to cover your camping chairs if they are in-game; we don't want to ruin the experience for others by throwing in modern amenities. 

d) Garbage bags – Disposing of your trash is the least a LARPer can do for others as well as for the environment. Bring several garbage bags to keep your area clean and litter-free. Leaving your trash also causes a safety concern and draws unwanted critters.

e) Foam Mat/Fold out bed – Sleeping in a tent doesn't have to be unpleasant. Make yourself comfortable by bringing a foam matting or a pop-up bed to sleep on. Create distance between you and the ground; this way, the humidity will not get to you.

f) Kettle to boil water – If you are tired, cold or you just woke up, a hot beverage like coffee or tea will give you the edge and energy you'll need to back into battle. At some time or another, you will be tired, hungry, or cold during an event. A bowl of hot soup or a warm cup of hot cocoa could change that.

g) Towel – I would call this an essential for a LARPer. Having a towel to dry yourself off before entering your tent or wiping down after a shower is smart. Remember to hang it to dry after your done and don't leave it on your armor to rust.

h) Wet wipes – Wet wipes are number one on the list as an essential element for all LARPers. When it comes to LARPing, wet wipes are the multifunctional cleaning product recommended and are easy to use. Use them when there's no shower nearby, when you need to clean your utensils or when you need to remove make-up like fake blood or dirt.

i) Sewing kit – If your LARP costume gets damaged during combat, you'll want to repair it immediately. It is essential to do repairs if you wish your roleplaying clothes to last. It is a skill that can easily be taught in-game, and it will serve you well on future adventures.

j) Mirror – If your character uses make-up, has a strange hairstyle or facial scars, you'll want to have a mirror to see what you're doing while transforming yourself into a mythical creature or an undead.

Author,
Patrick Penning
Epic Armoury Unlimited


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