Equinox Retreat

Relationships, mid-life, puppets

Designers: Sandy Bailly and Diana Ostrat
Number of participants: 6-12
Duration: 4 hours
The presenter feels that this larp IS suitable for young people aged 16+

About the larp

In an alternative present-day world, where the average life expectancy is about 90-100 years old, the turning point of your life is exactly in the middle of it.

At the equinox of your life, or your mid-life (of your natural lifespan), a symbiotic creature appears. It is a part of you just as well as your internal organs, and is an external representation of your emotions and relations. As the appearance of this symbiot is a given in this world, it has also been instated that retreats are organised for people to familiarise themselves with their symbiot once it appears.

You find yourself in such a retreat, along with a group of people that have been indicated as touching points in your life, as people you share some sort of connection with. All of you are here to learn how to behave with your symbiot so you can face the second half of your life.

Content Warnings: Themes that are unavoidable: Mid-life, knowing your exact natural age of death, change, family/friendship conflicts.

You will be creating your own characters so you will be able to avoid other possible triggers in your own background, however, these may still be present in other characters and be talked about in-game.

Sandy Bailly: A Belgian larper (b.1986) who likes diving deeply into emotional, understated play. Loves to co-create stories and experiences and tries to always keep other players’ energy into account. Started larping in the Belgian Dutch-speaking scene almost a decade ago, so can equally pick up a boffer sword and threaten you with it decently, but prefers not to. Has jumped into international larps a few years ago and hasn’t stopped exploring since.

Diana Ostrat: Hi! I’m a wannabe fantasy writer and photographer, and an obsessed dragon-friend. My work as a stage-producer and hobbyist film maker brought me to larp scene a good fourteen years ago and I never left. And even though I love (immersive) play, I mostly like to stay behind the scenes (as a Game Master, NPC or other member of the staff) and help people realise their dreams. When I’m not roleplaying or studying English language and literature, I am sleeping, creating random snuggle puddles and worshipping my cat.


Physical contact Moderate contact; e.g. hugging, formal partner dancing
Romance and intimacy Demonstrations of affection; e.g. hugging, holding hands
Conflict and violence Themes of conflict, but not enacted by players; e.g. quiet threats and vengeful stares
Communication style A mix between minimal speech (can be more if desired, but minimum will be happening) and a lot of emoting in small gestures (eg glances, hand gestures, displays of affection or animosity) – there will be a lot of communication that is non-verbal, but there will be minimal speech too.
Movement style Walking
Characters Players create their own characters, in a workshop
Narrative control The shape and direction of the story is entirely, or almost entirely, determined by player choice
Transparency Transparent design, but players can create secrets during play and keep them from each other / reveal them when wished
Representation The fictional space looks very unlike the play space and players will use their imaginations. There will also be props in the form of the puppets and their parts that represent the symbiotic creatures. These will fit the fictional space.
Play culture The whole concept of rivalry or cooperation between players doesn’t really apply
Tone Downstated emotional

Saturday afternoon, Studio 2