Before we get on with being keen for this years games, what are your favourite Empire moments in 2018? (Remember no big spoilers ).
E2, on the battlefield, my character was cut down by Jotun and able to hold hands with his brother knights, as they died, one by one. Hung on as terminal long enough to pass his shield to a young protege, and see them all carried back through the portal.
E3, a couple of moments. Returning from a skirmish to find that my 4 year old son (played by my 4 year old son) is still on his, and eventually came back with more treasure…
Dawns battle in E3. We heard that a major house wasn’t joining us, that Navarr had ripped itself to pieces in madness, and we saw our lords hacking each other down in the camp. We formed up and marched for the portal anyway, and everyone came, including 7 score Navarri…
On the battlefield again, fighting the screaming fanatics of the Eater of Hope. Great monstering, great swirling battle, suitable weather, good time.
E4, when my character picked a fight in the Glory Square. A battlemage with no offensive spells, vs a Knight of Eleonaris… and he won!
And the E4 battle, when Navarr and Dawn took that fort!
Actually yes, I do like battles
- Being one of the spirits at the Wintermark Kallavesa Swamp Pilgrimage. Seeing that endless line of torches approaching, getting to emerge through the smoke to bear witness and hear the tales… amazing. One of the most impressive things I’ve ever seen at LARP, and I feel honoured to have been involved.
- Executing the fallen as a Druj Kallad. “You’ve got a choice. Either we torture you to death right here, and you die alone and in agony… or we give you a nice little drink and send you back to your mates. How about that, eh? Just a little drink! See, it looks just like water!”
- Playing [REDACTED], Captain of the [REDACTED] in a past life vision. The transcript for this particular past life vision isn’t on the wiki yet (I don’t even know if the character allowed the Seer Of The Gateway to transcribe it), but there were sword fights, arguments, betrayals, scenery chewing, things being set on fire… fantastic.
- EATING the fallen as a Herald of Siakha Jaws theme intensifies
A Ghodi In the Crush Having crushed the first two forts, the evil Empire threw its might against the last remaining palisade. With the voices of their ancestors roaring in their ears, the heroes of the Jotun locked shields and prepared to sell their deaths dearly. Again and again the Imperial line crashed like the sea against the shield-wall, and again and again the warriors repelled it, fearless as the stone.
Meanwhile I’m in the center of the slowly contracting defensive ring, healing wounds and mending limbs as fast as I could find the herbs. An extremely fun fight, and the heroic Jotun held the line for far longer than seemed possible.
Most of these are very personal, nonetheless they were awesome:
E1 A night out around Anvil with two fellow Urizen newbies- standing at Uncle Regretzio’s in the League camp as the Highguard Day of the Dead Parade went past, and then Song & Story Time in Navarr- "this Empire thing is amazing "
E2 The Battle of the Gethern Expanse in Spiral- fighting my way all the way up the field alongside my predecessor as Ensign, slaying a Drake, the brutal, prolonged melee with Grendel Stoneborn, finding a dying Kyra Halcyon clinging to Diomedes, the Siakha-herald ravaged-corpse of my sworn Sibling Cassius laying unmoving in front of me, seeing my friends Diomedes, Faustus and Tanwyn trapped behind enemy lines, the unrelenting, physically exhausting pressure of holding the shieldwall alongside the Highborn and Navarr in the retreat, the surprise of finding Tanwyn alive as I passed back through the gate, discovering we had actually won the battle, and the terrible cost hadn’t been in vain…
E3 The Battle against the Eater of Hope- Urizen had lost many heroes in a disastrous skirmish the day before, and I had spent the entire day rallying and preparing our remaining forces for a do or die effort- rumours swirled around Anvil of betrayal and nations refusing to fight- would the League join us? Would the Navarr fight? As we prepared to go through the gate it became apparent our allies had not deserted us and my character swore that the only Urizen that could die that day would be him if necessary- we had paid too high a price already that summit. We slaughtered our way through a horde of screaming, maddened cultists, then encountered a series of palisades defended by the Grendel, alongside two allies I lead the attack on the breach opposite the Urizen force, then we wheeled round to flank an enemy force facing the Dawnish. Several Dawnish Knights were down wounded- I escorted one of our Egregores and a Physick in an attempt to rescue them- we were ambushed by a group of Grendel, and lay there bleeding with the Labyrinth beckoning- saved at the last minute by my Spiremates, after healing I returned to the front, and saw another group of Dawnish wounded- I lead a charge of Sentinels and saw off a group of Grendel, saving the life of the Captain of the Throneguard, for which I received a Field Marshal’s commendation. I was the last Urizen back through the gate and had fulfilled my vow- no Urizen had died. Best battle!
E4- the roleplay with my character’s estranged sibling/nemesis across the summit, a relationship not of murderous hatred but of frustration, rejection and twisted loyalty. During the battle against the Druj in Zenith I ended up alongside some Wintermarkers and Imperial Orcs in the shieldwall covering the Imperial retreat- I looked down to find my sibling laying dying on the field- and I was able to use Stay With Me to save her- a massive personal plot and character development point that happened through sheer blind luck, or the will of the LARP gods! Also being promoted to Ensign, and having an impact on events beyond battlefield exploits alone.
All mine are personal this year, as it was a weird one with three characters in two events which meant I never quite got my footing.
I never imagined I’d create a character who generated enough waves that she’d be Whispered Through the Black Gate. It was hella intimidating having to go out there and be a character I’d not played for what seemed like a long time, but then the crowd started singing their ritual and I started dancing in the ref tent and I found her character again. Many feels, tears for her wife, singing for the crowd. It was very very Renata.
Malachi’s terminal RP, especially on the battlefield with her childhood friend not letting her die out there and carrying her home. I’ve not played terminal before and while it was difficult to judge exactly how long to let it go on I think I got the balance about right.
and finally all the singing I’ve done this year. The last two years have seen a huge upward curve in the amount I’m writing and performing and I’m super-happy at how it’s going. More for 2019!
Getting taken hostage in the Druj battle at E1. As a big fan of attention, staring down certain death was a lot more fun with like five Imperial armies staring at me. It gave me a front row seat for what felt like thr turning point where that battle went from confusing mess to hopeless retreat. Being plunked down to bleed out with the other casualties also led to a favourite moment of roleplay, singing tearfully about home until I was too choked up to go on, then being wowed by a new player, terminal beside me, counseling courage in our journey to the Labyrinth. Great end to a character.
E1 - Seeing my name on a flyer without any prior knowledge. Having Tarik used as a selling point for an event was an enormous ego boost at a time when it was needed. I was actually approaching the League Egregore, His Grace, The Duke of Joy and Sorrow, to grab a flyer off him and he said “oh, you definitely need one of these.” Then seeing the quality of the performers and it was humbling.
E1 - The response to a new song, “Nowhere I’d Rather Be” at the League theatre and Navarr Song & Story Time. Despite the mud, despite the rain, despite the cold, I had people tell me that the song had reminded them of why they do this, and I couldn’t have dreamed of a better compliment.
E2 - The Wintermark pilgrimage to the swamp. That was incredible. I had the honour of speaking on behalf of Ardith. Standing in the middle of that circle of torches was an amazing sight which will stay with me for a long time.
E4 - We’d had a bit of a shitter in terms of the weather last year, but having one last night around our fire with hallmates, guests, friends old and new, singing, sharing stories and whatnot. That for me is the heart of why I love Empire and it was an experience I’d missed for most of the year. It’s the main reason I keep coming back.
Does joining empire count? As my first ever LARP experience being roped into and fully enjoying an experiment that involved me taking bite, as I deemed myself expendable, wanting to fight people and being informed that my there was a vallorn infested mattress in my tent that needed to be fought.
This was my first year at Empire and first year of LARP. It’s been an amazing journey so far. Highlight include:
The whole process and nerves of attending my first event hindsight was an amazing experience. Overcoming anything that scares me is always a win.
Accidentally walking into the Orc camp before time in and getting very confused about another group calling themselves the Ashborn.
The sheer awe of Empire for the first time
Holding off the Imperial army in a desperate hold as the Jotun
Eater of Hope… I mean did anyone not have a good time that battle?!
Making new friends
Mainly drinking… Curse that free bar in Navarr
Murder plots and intrigue
Being cleaved at Anvil and yelling at passers by for assistance
Empire has meant the world to me this year. My personal life has been rough. Empire and making a podcast of my experiences has given meaning and purpose when I desperately needed it. The people have constantly surprised me with their generosity, kindness, creativity and bravery. Thank you all and I hope this year brings you the things you need and some fun and excitement along the way.
My favourite moment is probably a night in the pub…I’d previously got hold of some -ahem- Urizeni erotica. Having shown it to my friends (who found it hilarious), we somehow ended up in the Temeschbar paying the Leaguish players to perform a version of it complete with terrible props! We found the whole thing hilarious and, to be fair, they did seem to be finding it somewhat funny underneath the embarrassment. The players were fantastic sports, deliberately acting bits out wrong, overacting and putting on weird expressions and voices. I can honestly say I don’t think I have spent a more entertaining or amusing night in Anvil!
E1 - I had to go home early, but that made me determined to come back.
E2 - No E2 fofr me :’(
E3 - Seeing a Dawnish noble defend a yeofolk of her house and seeing her tear the malitia to shreds was amazing.
My first battle, where my two closest IC friends and I all got separated from each other, considering it was the Eater of Hope battle we were all terrified, when we found each other at the end of the battle we were all overjoyed XD
E4 - Going for a wander and buying a load of Liao for a friend, I managed to get a tonne when not many people could find any
Inquisiting the Empress in a setup that was heavily ripped off from Prime Minister’s Questions, run in the Senate, and featured the Inquisitorial Court sat around looking serious. I’d wanted to do a prominent “Inquisition is a test not a punishment” thing and I think we pulled it off .
Doing a Whispers through the Black Gate for a murdered senator. Just as the ghost shows up, a rainstorm kicks off in perfect dramatic timing. And then we get to be led to his body by the ghost, and dolefully carry him back to the Marches, singing funeral songs.
Late night religious discussion in Merrick’s
“So we’re trying to discuss how the Empire’s lost its heart, and every time any of us make a serious point it’s drowned out by people loudly singing about buggering hedgehogs.”
“It’s a really appropriate metaphor for the state of things, isn’t it?”
Gotta be the Marchers…
I’ve think I’ve heard someone from the brass coast singing a song about not being able to do it, might be the same song, unless someone else had heard the song and said ‘hold my beer’.
E4: Getting a ‘Strikedown’ call, and the refs had to move me out of the way of the rapidly contracting murder ball just in case I took a load of people down behind me in a very very restricted area. Unfortunately that was behind the Druj lines so I knew I was going to die. There was brief hope when my daughter strode through the lines to what I thought was a rescue, but instead she wanted to make sure I hadn’t had a fit. Satisfied, she pushed her way back through the lines. I then had an extremely entertaining death which made up for the whole experience, and had a ref come up to me saying how much they enjoyed the RP. So a bitter-sweet memory.
If it was during broken wheel then it was probably at guise bar in dawn.
I don’t know, possibly. I can’t remember which event it was and I usually do a fair bit of wondering at every event so I could have heard it anywhere at any time.
The early part of the year is fuzzy for me but a few of the moments that stand out include:
Getting to do Whispers through the Black Gate for my dead character at E3, my chapter managed to give that cynical bastard feelings the fiends. I also am pleased I got to say “Oh fuck” as my opening line on walking into the ritual circle .
Crewing the same event as “The Asshole from Asevea” was entertaining, being menanced by creepy Varushkans and then being dumped co-incidently in my player groups tent to be interrogated and lectured at by sundry Imperials to renounce my wicked ways. Which I cheerfully rejected out of hand as he liked being rich.
Coming in with a new character at E4 was also a lot of fun, but bouncing around the 2nd battle with a crossbow for the first time was a highlight and defending a fort with one is super cool .
This is my highlight of the year too! Worth every ring. Still want to do a recording the whole set as podcast
Aside from the above which was epic. My own personal achievement and delight was seeing this on the Wiki. Having spent a year working my arse off learning everything about Jarm, as well as being a new player to larp it was a steep learning curve over the year.
- Ambassador to Jarm - IZSÁK BLÁR SKIPSTJÓRI
To be fair we were loudly singing about not buggering hedgehogs.