Legends of the Stars:「Freedom」

Legends of the Stars is an international sci-fi larp set in a decaying universe brimming with injustice, broken promises and a quickly fading hope that somewhere, in the farthest reaches of space, there is still freedom to be found. You will be part of a desperate team of researchers - uniquely talented prisoners and the struggling crew sent to oversee them - on a race against time to unlock the mysteries of an ancient, abandoned vessel and maybe, just maybe, earn your freedom.

Set on the USS Salem, a WWII-era heavy cruiser, Legends of the Stars is a 3-day full immersion larp, inspired by the Nordic larp genre. It is an event about dramatic stories, intense conflict and the hard choices that people make in desperate situations.

The third run of Legends of the Stars will take place on November 16-18, 2018, in Quincy, Mass., USA.

What will inspire you?

Design Pillars

Legends of the Stars is a larp that explores themes of freedom, guilt, vulnerability, desperation, and the loss of power. It looks into a future where humanity is fading under the rule of a faceless, heartless hegemony and asks what can be salvaged from the ruins. At its core, this larp is about three things:

  • It’s about an ancient ship and the mysteries it contains.

  • It’s about adults facing their own mortality.

  • It’s about what can be found when empires fall, but their remnants remain.

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Inspiration

Though an original world conceived by the community behind the larp, Legends of the Stars recognizes and honors its many influences - Star Wars, Dune, Battlestar Galactica, Cowboy Bebop, The Expanse, Dark Crystal, Lotka Volterra and many more. An important part of every experience in the Legends universe are the real stories of the USS Salem and its crew. We honor the memory and stories of those who served, exploring the past through the lens of a possible future.

Content Warnings

In the course of this larp the themes of individual violence, physical abuse, death or dying, mental illness, war, terrorism, incarceration, torture, fascist states, and more may be depicted and / or referenced in backstory, worldbuilding or design. Participants will always be able to opt out of interactions with any of these themes, or any other content during the larp. If you have questions about any other potential content or trigger warnings, please reach out to the organizing team and ask.

Though Legends of the Stars seeks to create space to explore darker aspects of humanity, there are certain lines that this community does not wish to cross in that exploration:

  • This larp will not include depictions or backstory references of sexual assault / rape.

  • This larp will not include depictions or backstory references of child abuse / pedophilia.

  • This larp will not include sexism, racism, ableism or discrimination against minorities in its design or world building.

These statements are not an inherent judgment on the desire to include these themes in a larp experience, but a recognition that this experience and community is not interested in or properly trained to explore these themes.

Who will you become?

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You can play as...

A Daoine, a high security threat - imprisoned due to your innate connection to a mystic source of power that few understand. You once belonged to a sacred temple where you practiced your mystic arts, in defiance of the powerful Galactic Consortium, but your people face persecution out of fear of the threat you may pose to the state. Your assignment to this mission will give you an opportunity to leave the cage they locked you in all those years ago, and seek answers from a relic of your own past.

As a Daoine player, your experience is about discovering ancient mysteries, facing moral quandaries with galactic implications, and reclaiming your personal power. The central narrative will be influenced directly by the organizing team, but ultimately led by the Daoine players. Organizers will be available during the course of the game to consult with and help move your individual stories in the directions you desire.A detailed character sheet will be written ahead of the game, based on your content and play preferences.

Registration for Legends of the Stars 2019 opens next summer!

You can play as...

A crew member, a pawn of the state - hired to supervise the Daoine prisoners and maintain the ship’s operational capacity. You come from all walks of life and find yourselves in diverse roles -  janitors, guards, technicians, shuttle pilots - unified in your desire to escape the tightly regimented societies you came from. Although you remain under the close surveillance of the state, this mission is a chance to explore that which you’ve never had before - a taste of freedom and a trace of hope.

As a crew player, your experience is about being powerless in the crossfires of galactic war, facing your mortality and finding comfort (or not) in one another. You will be a part of the central narrative, but you won’t have the agency to change the universe - only to influence your own life and the lives of those around you. Your experience is self-guided and collaboratively driven by your fellow players, rather than the organizers. A simple character sheet will be written ahead of the game with much room for you to further develop, based on your content and play preferences.

Registration for Legends of the Stars 2019 opens next summer!

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How did we get here?

The Galactic Consortium is at war. The rebels in the Long View System, far outside of the reach of the central government, struck swiftly and forcefully against their once oppressors. But their attack failed. Their Daoine allies have fallen, abandoned by the retreating rebels and torn apart by internal divisions. As punishment for their rebellion, the Galactic Consortium has deemed their unnatural and archaic cults as treasonous and illegal.

For the safety of all of humanity, the Daoine have been incarcerated in a high-security prison ship, the Tilicho, far from the galactic center. Those who newly demonstrate a connection to the Source are forced to suppress their powers, or live their lives in fear of persecution and death. Having developed new technologies to suppress the powers of the Source and render the Daoine powerless, the Galactic Consortium has declared total victory over their former enemies.

But one challenge remains to the complete hegemony of the Galactic Consortium - the now dormant Daoine relic ship that sparked the rebellion so many years ago has refused all attempts to control and dismantle its systems. Over the years, the state has managed to isolate the vessel on the edge of government-controlled space, far from any potentially malicious actors. After much consideration, the Galactic Consortium has decided to send an expeditionary shuttle from the Tilicho filled with Daoine inmates under the watchful eye of an appointed warden and his crew. Their mission - to study the ship, unlock its secrets, and weaponize it in the name of the state. Their reward, should they survive - freedom.

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Where will you go?

To capture the essence of the claustrophobic and awe-inspiring character of a vessel of war, the event takes place on a real military ship - the USS Salem in Quincy, MA. Built at the end of the second World War, the USS Salem served for ten years as flagship of the U.S. 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean and 2nd Fleet in the Atlantic. In October of 1994, the USS Salem made its way home for the last time, to its birthplace in Quincy. Now the centerpiece of the U.S. Naval and Shipbuilding museum, it has inspired countless generations with the stories of its service and long-standing tales of the ghosts that haunt its decks. As a part of the Legends experience, you will have access to almost all of the ship - from the captain’s bridge all the way down to the engine rooms and CIC.

On sleeping. You will be sleeping on canvas bunks in the historic sleeping quarters of the ship. Participants will be responsible for bringing their own sleeping linens, pillows, sleeping bag, or even a cot or camping mattress, if preferred. Though the sleeping area will be heated, the USS Salem can get quite cold and you are encouraged to bring many layers and additional warm sleeping gear to regulate your personal comfort.

On restrooms. Private bathroom and restroom facilities are functional on the ship and will be reserved for Legends of the Stars participants. Though there are facilities throughout the ship, it is often a few minute’s walk to the nearest bathroom. Part of the orientation and workshops will include identifying these facilities and showing the clear paths from the sleeping quarters to the nearest facilities.

On meals. Catered meals will be provided by the event for all participants, with plenty of options for vegetarian diets. While the organizing team will strive to accommodate other dietary restrictions, it cannot guarantee adequate coverage or allergen certification for catered meals. If you have a specific dietary need, please inform the organizing team and consider bringing along personal snacks and protein sources to ensure you can remain well-nourished during the course of the event. Drinking water will be available at all times, throughout the ship.

On accessibility. While we are committed to creating an event that is accessible to as many interested people as possible, we must face the realities of our setting.

There are no functioning elevators anywhere on the USS Salem and almost all doorways have high lips that make wheelchair use all but impossible. Staircases are steep and require participants to grip railings. Traveling between levels and through certain passageways require caution and can be challenging even for those with full mobility. Even the sleeping areas require a certain mobility to climb into bunks, though there are many ways to address sleeping accommodations.

While we do not want to discourage anyone from participating in this event, we want to have an honest discussion with potential participants who may find the physical setting of the LARP a barrier to their experience. If you feel this may be the case for you, please contact us before committing to a ticket. We will do the very best we can to accommodate your needs.

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Legends of the Stars: 「Freedom」
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When will you join us?

Legends of the Stars takes off on November 16-18, 2018. Will you join us onboard for an unforgettable larp experience?

Included in every ticket:

  • A three day larp experience aboard the USS Salem, an historic WW2-era heavy cruiser, including access to almost all of the ship’s facilities.

  • Briefings and workshops for three hours prior to the event, optional debrief following the event.

  • Catered meals with plentiful vegetarian options from Friday dinner through Sunday breakfast.

  • Science fiction inspired scenography, interactive stations, props and special effects.

  • Shared bunk in heated sleeping quarters, including choice of upper / lower and extra storage bunks.

  • Individually written character based on content and play preferences collected via character survey.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the team behind this project?

Legends of the Stars originated as a project concept between Eric Love and Alexis Moisand in late 2015, under the umbrella of the LARP Adventure Program production house, which specializes in youth larp programs in the greater Boston area. Since then, dozens of committed volunteer organizers and helpers have contributed to building this project into what it is today. Though many originated from the staff and community members of L.A.P., the Legends community has taken on a life of its own.

For the November 2018 event, the leadership team will consist of Eric Love (Producer), Alison Davis (Director), Jessica Hone (Writer), Alexis Moisand (Project Manager). A full list of organizers and helpers is available upon request.

How does this all work?

After you purchase your ticket, our team will reach out to you and begin the character creation process. Soon enough, the writing team will carefully craft a character just for you. As we get closer to the event, a guidebook, code of conduct, event schedule, design philosophy and further information on the universe will be released.

By the time the event arrives, you will be ready to bring your character to life! Friday afternoon, everyone will arrive on site and begin workshops to acquaint the participants, with the game and with each other. Come Friday evening, you will have begun your journey into the Legends of the Stars universe and the larp will continue until late Saturday evening. On Sunday, we will debrief and pack up to leave the ship by early afternoon.

What kind of combat system is used?

The larp uses an integrated model to represent combat that takes inspiration from the Nordic larp tradition, Southern Way larp techniques and theatrical combat. There are no skills or attributes, no hit points or damage. When the larp begins, the focus will be on roleplaying and story, with combat serving as one of many tools to advance those stories.

A combat system will be workshopped prior to the beginning of the larp that aims to create drama in weapon exchanges, including a semi-choreographed lightsaber mechanic to communicate non-verbally during combat. However, the focus will always be on creating dramatic scenes and exploring emotional moments, more so than winning a physical battle. Further details will be released in the weeks leading up to the event.

More questions and answers coming soon.