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Roles Behind the Scenes

Updated: Mar 23

Running a LARP event is no easy task, but working with team members who are passionate about the experience they provide makes it an extremely rewarding one. The dedication and enthusiasm of everyone involved not only enhance the quality of the experience for participants but also foster a sense of community within the community.


  There are many roles involved in the organization of each event and every single one is crucial in the successful execution of those events. From the creative minds shaping the storyline and characters to the dedicated crafters handling props and costumes, each member contributes a unique skill set essential to bringing the immersive world to life. 


GM (Guild Master)

The owner of an Underworld LARP guild. In Mournfall’s case, we have multiple GMs. Responsible for the vast majority of event planning, financial management and conflict resolution. They usually have the final say in any decisions and direct other members of the team.


HoP (Head of Plot)

The Head of Plot, or Lead Shaper, is usually the overarching story’s main writer. For this reason, they typically remain the HoP for many years. They also ensure the other shapers' stories are cohesive to the overall plot. They direct the Shaper team as to which direction the plot should go so that Shapers have a better idea of what to write.


Sawyer assisting Captain Lysander after his rescue, surrounded by worried onlookers.
Sawyer assisting Captain Lysander after his rescue, surrounded by worried onlookers.
Shaper

Shapers are dedicated writers for the season's plot, and often stay on the shaper team over multiple seasons (though this isn't always the case). They generally know less about the long term story than the HoP but are well informed about the current season’s planned story. With some direction they can create stories that can engage players over the course of a single “mod” or even have their stories span the course of months or years to come. Their responsibilities include, but aren't limited to, writing storylines, marshaling mods and directing Narrators and NPCs.


Narrator

This role is the halfway point between Shapers and Season NPCs. Players who take on the title of Narrator commit to this role for the entire larp season. They normally know less about the overall plot than Shapers but are given a general idea of what the story will be along the course of the year. Narrators tend to play recurring roles for characters that will show up multiple times throughout the season and occasionally write stories of their own. Some guilds do not have this role as an official title or use it in slightly different ways.


NPC (Non-Player Character)

These are players that are not currently playing a character of their own. NPCs play as the various locals and monsters written by Shapers that populate the world. There are a few different types of NPC roles based on their time spent as an NPC over the course a season;


  • Season NPC : A player who chooses to spend the entire larp season on the NPC team. These players tend to be given a basic understanding of the overall plans for the season's story arc.

  • Event NPC : A player who chooses to spend the entire event on the NPC team. They are generally told about that specific event’s story at the start of the event, though this isn’t always the case.

  • Shift NPC (Shifty) : A player who plays their own character for the majority of the event but joins the NPC team for at least one shift, on average about 4 hours. They will not be playing as their own character during their shift. After a player’s 3rd event at Underworld they are required to pick a shift at any events they attend or opt out by paying a 5$ fee (this fee and shift length may change depending on the guild).


A bloody skull and tower candle in a bowl of blood.
A bloody skull and tower candle in a bowl of blood.
Camp Director

Some may also refer to this role as the “camp mom”. They are responsible for organizing the NPC camp and keep things running as smoothly as possible from ensuring proper communication between staff members to finding creative ways of improving efficiency.


Props, Costume and Makeup

This role provides the game with physical props that players can interact with as well as  makeup and costuming for any NPCs who require it. They help create a more immersive world for players.


NPL (New Player Liaison)

NPLs are a group tasked with guiding new players into our game world. They occasionally plan Out of Game meetups between events and work closely with the marketing team to organize convention booths and panels. From finding a place in the community, answering any questions, helping to create a character, guiding them through the logistics process, to being a first point of contact. NPLs are there to help.


Logistics

Each guild has a team responsible for the registration of accounts and management of characters on the database. The logistics team also ensures that all payments and documentation are completed for present players before they receive their character card and enter play at each event.


Weapon Marshal

Weapon Marshals ensure the safety of any weapons and armour that are brought to events. They also count each player’s worn armour points and provide armour cards that state the amount of armour points a character is wearing. They are usually stationed by the logistics table.


Medical Marshal

The medical marshal team is crucial to ensuring safety at events. They are made up of people who have received First Aid or higher medical training and can assist during medical emergencies that occur at events. Medical marshals will be introduced at the beginning of every event and every attendee should familiarize themselves with who they are.


A monster marshal hard at work in the NPC camp Tent.
A monster marshal hard at work in the NPC camp Tent.
Monster Marshal

Monster marshals work closely with the Shaper team to provide statistics and loot for any NPCs that are sent out into the game world. They can also occasionally accompany NPCs while staying Out of Game to make rule calls or regulate how often monsters re-enter the battlefield during combat encounters.


Photo Ninja

This title is given to those who photograph at events. Photos are generally posted on our Facebook page after events.


Marketing

The marketing team works closely with the NPL team and photo ninjas to help organize booths and panels at conventions and make social media posts. The goal is to effectively promote Underworld Larp Mournfall to its target audience, drive participation and engagement, and ultimately contribute to the growth and success of our community.


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