Bleak Midwinter

Fertility, genderqueer, existential

Designer: Will Osmond
Number of participants: 5–7
Duration: 3 hours
The presenter feels that this larp IS suitable for young people aged 16+

About the larp

None of us chose each other. We were just all that were left after the catastrophe. Trapped in this room together, we needed to rely on each other and our shared rituals. It’s not always that easy though, especially when it comes to Christmas lunch.

In Bleak Midwinter you will develop, in character, a post-apocalyptic Christmas ritual, while negotiating tense relationships and low-key conflicts. Tension and conflict arise from feelings of being trapped and issues of fertility and progeneration. The larp is about trying to hold it together in the face of frustration and despair.

Content Warnings: Themes of (in)fertility.

Presented by

Will Osmond: I started larping and designing larps around three years ago after many years of writing and directing for theatre. I have played internationally in Europe and the US, co-designed Life of a House, and helped to organise On Location and the U.K. run of Just a Little Lovin’.


Physical contact Light contact; touching hands or forearms
Romance and intimacy Demonstrations of affection; e.g. hugging, holding hands
Conflict and violence Shouting and other intimidating actions not involving contact
Communication style Lots of speech
Movement style Walking
Characters Players build their characters around a predesigned skeleton or archetype
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 level The fictional space is pretty similar to the play space
Play culture There is low-level conflict based more on attitudes and views rather than objectives
Tone Intense

Sunday morning, Studio 4