Dungeons, Dragons, and Therapy

Group therapy, Conversation, Betrayal

Designers: Behrooz ‘Bez’ Shahriari
Number of participants: 10
Duration: 3 hours
The presenter feels that this larp IS NOT suitable for young people aged 16+

About the larp

The minotaur children were living a peaceful existence until their parents were slaughtered in the dungeon by humans. Now they must confront their grief.

The dragon must overcome depression and insomnia, as well as hoarding tendencies. The mayor – a pathological liar – is the one who brought them all together for this disastrous turn of events.

A kleptomaniac, egomaniac, paranoid, and ODD group of humans have turned a home of creatures into a murder-scene.

Now, let’s sit down together, have a nice cup of tea, and try to come to some resolutions as we explore our traumas in group-therapy.

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The game will cycle between ‘present-day group-therapy’ and ‘flashbacks’. Players will either play the role of a facilitator, or one of these characters, all of whom are struggling with their role in society. Depending on the players’ choices, there may be a start towards a peaceful resolution, or the conflicts might simply increase.

This LARP tries to be respectful, whilst maintaining a comedic outlook. It could be likened to a ‘black comedy’ and is not a serious representation of the various traits depicted.

Content Warnings: Simulations of murder, death, mental illness, neuroatypicalities.

Behrooz ‘Bez’ Shahriari: Bez has been in love with games for most of her life. The way that rules inform our behaviour, stimulate interested decisions, and even encourage deep pondering and effect change.

She is best known in the gaming world for ‘Yogi’. She has also self-published a few other lighter games: Kitty Cataclysm, several games for the ELL deck, and the forthcoming +.

Bez works on some games to effect change (Challenging Structures, a LARP about legal gender/sex representation) as well as Seize the Power (a boardgame about bigotry and power imbalances).

Ultimately, Bez hopes to facilitate joy and good times.

Parameters

Physical contact Light contact; touching hands or forearms
Romance and intimacy Demonstrations of affection; e.g. hugging, holding hands
Conflict and violence There are depictions of violence and murder. There will not be any actual pushing/grabbing.
Communication style Lots of speech
Movement style Walking
Characters Characters are fully predesigned
Narrative control Players have some influence over story, but there is basically a script or structure that they’re within
Transparency Fully transparent – players will, or at least can, know absolutely everything in advance
Representation The fictional space looks very unlike the play space, but players will use their imaginations
Play culture The notion of whether characters can co-operate or not is the central story of the game
Tone Black-comedy

Sunday morning, Studio 3