Larp! Live action role play, the nerd hobby that even other nerds think is maybe a bit too nerdy.
Like other nerd hobbies, larp slowly consumes all of your disposable income and spare time. You may start with the intention of just grabbing a few things from a thrift shop, and making a boffer (foam) weapon (if that applies to the game). But then end up wanting more costume pieces, warmer clothing (at least here, because winter sucks), the really pretty pre-made boffers instead of your first one made from duck tape and plumbing supplies, leather armour, or maybe chain if you're on a budget... Then you find another game in a different genre! So you go out and get more costume stuff, maybe a nerf gun this time, paint it up, and pouches! Always need the right pouch for your shit. And makeup and sealers and adhesives... Its like cosplay but theres no off season, and you need to be able to run and get smacked around a bit in it. Then theres theatre or parlour style games, where you might use cards, tokens, or plain old rock paper scissors to resolve combat, and are encouraged to focus more on using words to solve (or start) problems. Here the trend is monthly games, that much like typical table top, are part of a long running story.
And its starting to sneak into more peoples lives with things like escape rooms, and zombie themed paint ball and airsoft games. There isn't always a big focus on immersion... but you're still pretending to be in a situation that isn't real, and doing so by role playing that situation as you run about.
Or at least thats the style in North America. They do things a bit different in Europe, typically with one off, or short series games. These games could be minimalistic, having people show up in street clothing at a rented hall and be presented with different settings and such. Or "blockbuster" style, prepping a detailed costume for one massive event with a heavy focus on immersion, not only of how each player presents themselves, but in the dressing of the setting. Using larp as an educational tool for kids is also a bigger thing over there.
So! Have you ever gone to a larp? What sort of game was it, and did you have fun? Is it something you'd want to try if you haven't before? For those that enjoy larping, what have some of your favourite in game moments been?
I play in a fantasy game, and a sci-fi game at the moment, both are boffer style larps. Meaning you use prop foam weapons (as well as spell packets for the fantasy, and nerf guns in the sci-fi) to represent combat. A rules light post apocalyptic game with western themes is going to be doing some testing soon, and I'm really looking forward to that. Also, a supernatural crime investigation game is going to be doing some testing shortly, that ones more theatre style. So less beating on each other with foam sticks, more figuring stuff out, spreading rumours, and poking around.