The Inside

Institutionalization, humanity, tragedy

Designer: Lee Foxworthy
Number of participants: 8–15
Duration: 4 hours
The presenter feels that this larp IS NOT suitable for young people aged 16+

About the larp

THE INSIDE is a dive into American mental health care between 1940-1980. Players will portray a person who was committed, or a staff person of one of the many institutions during that time. The experience is not about mental illness, and no one will be portraying any illness. Rather, players will have a background and character that is loosely based on a real person pulled from primary and secondary sources from the time. There are many tropes in modern media regarding Asylums and Institutions, and this brief glimpse INSIDE is intended to unmask those tropes and contextualize the real human experiences of those who worked and resided in those buildings.

The themes of dehumanization, institutionalization, and systemic oppression are heavy throughout the experience and are intended to provide a glimpse into the very real people who inhabited those spaces.

Content Warnings: Mental Illness, Loss of Agency, Human Suffering, Institutionalization, period-accurate homophobia.

Presented by

Lee Foxworthy: is a Larp writer and Designer from San Antonio Texas. He has been larping for fifteen years, and enjoys designing for introspective and emotional experiences. When not running or writing larps, Lee enjoys experimental larp experiences, and darker themed play.


Physical contact Light contact; touching hands or forearms
Romance and intimacy Romantic themes but no player contact; e.g. discussion of romance, illicit glances
Conflict and violence Themes of conflict, but not enacted by players; e.g. quiet threats and vengeful stares
Communication style Lots of speech
Movement style Walking
Characters Characters are fully predesigned
Narrative control The course of play is determined by character actions, but the ending is pre-determined.
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 The whole concept of rivalry or cooperation between players doesn’t really apply
Tone Intense

Saturday afternoon, Studio 1