New American

Hey there! American here, not new to LARP, but interested in trying Empire when COVID calms down.

I’m interested in playing Imperial Orcs, Marches, or Dawn.

For the Orcs, I already have a kit for another game that meets the brief (would just need the appropriate mask). Marches/Dawn, I have a kit that would fit for a Beater of the Marches, or a yeofolk of Dawn.

Would anyone be willing to toss in their opinions on how new player friendly those groups are, what they’d be looking for to play interesting stories within those nations, and what I could look into for accommodations when eventually able to make it over,

Also, I have not been able to find rules on what is permissible for combat. I have a medical condition that makes me getting hit in the head a Bad Time For Me, so I was curious about that. Knowing the likelihood of headshots will definitely inform my character choice.

Additionally, I am part of the Empire Facebook group, is this forum or the FB a better place to get info?

Thanks in advance!


Hi. Welcome.

First things first. All the nations are friendly to new players. There aren’t l beginner or advanced nations. Though people describe playing an orc as hard mode due to needing to wear a mask all the time. But that’s about it.

Head shots are allowed. But they are the last target. So it should only be hot if there is no other option (like if you are peaking out behind a large shield with only it exposed) but you can wear a helmet and it’s a light touch game anyway. So very low risk of actual damage to your head or anywhere. Full combat rules can be found here: Combat - Empire

It’s also worth noting that 99% of combat happens off the main field through the sentinel gate. So you are hightly unlikely to get attacked unexpectedly. Anvil is very safe.

I can’t say much about marches or the orcs as I have no experience with them. But I’m sure someone else will be along before them. But I’ve played dawn for 3 year now. So aside from being the best (obvious bias showing). Pick dawn if you want to big bold and courageous. Stories in dawn are all about love and glory. About house rivalry and competition. About showing everyone just how damn great you are at what you do (whatever that may be) it’s bright and colourful and larger than life. Highest highs and the most tragic lows.

It’s knights in shining armour. This is in contrast with the marchers more grounded and common folk aspect approach.

Here is probably better for questions than the face book. But you can do both. Or there is the unofficial discord.

I hope that gives you a clue. I’m sure others will help out. And feel free to ask more

Hello and welcome!

All those nations are very friendly, and I suspect you could easily find a group in one of them happy to recruit you, or just to show you around. Dawn and the Marches are pretty big, so almost any character type would be able to carve out an interesting story, or fall into one :slight_smile: The Imperial Orcs and smaller but that means that any one person makes more of a difference.

Accomadations… there are several budget hotels in the area, reasonably close, who are (by now) used to the costumes going in and out all weekend; but between Silverstone motor racing circuit and us, they book up fast and in advance.

Unless you meant in-game accomadation, in which case your options are in or out of character. UNless you make some great friends before then you’d be willing to share a tent with, I’d suggest starting OOC. Plenty of space, any small tent, and the OOC camping areas aren’t too far from the IC areas.

As SMason has pointed out, head hits in this game are (a) usually as gentle as possible, (b) should only be as a last resort* and © occur on the combat field. There is also excellent first aid and medical provision on site, if the worst happens.

In 8 years of playing pretty combative characters (in Dawn), attending every battle I could, I think I’ve taken a handful of (nicely pulled) head-hits.

These forums and the FB pages for the nations etc work in parallel, feel free to ask in either venue. Have a check through the New Player sub-forum here, there’ve been a lot of questions answered which may be helpful.

*You may want to look here for “permissible in combat”

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*another yank waving hello

However, I live here in the UK, and there are Americans scattered across all the nations of the Empire, including the Imperial Orcs.

Headshots do happen, we’re supposed to pull all our strikes, but I’ve seen people get concussed because someone got too hot-blooded and didn’t pull their blows. You might want to give combat a miss until you find your way through the rest of Anvil. Combat should only happen beyond the Sentinel Gate, but people do weapons practices and occasional assassinations within Anvil, but they’re uncommon, unless you’re in the Imperial Orc Fighting Pit, or Dawn’s Glory Square where fighting happens, but it’s usually more controlled than the battlefield.

Also understand that if you take the battlefield as your character, you must monster on the other day.

I wear glasses, so I stick to battlefield roles that’re less likely to get my glasses slapped off my face. I’m also an Imperial Orc, so the mask holds the glasses in place pretty well, but if you aren’t an Orc, then glasses leashes are essential.

Accommodation, travelling with a tent from the US could be onerous; if you can make good connections to whatever nation you settle on, you might be able to kip in your banner’s tent. There are also IC-tent rentals, but they aren’t dressed, so you’ll need to bring your bedding and whatever kit you’ll be wearing and weapons that you’re using.

As to Marchers, plenty of good folx there, and suited to new players. Dawn is also suited to new players. The Imperial Orcs might be challenging for some, due to the mask. Saying that, all nations have new players, saying ‘I’m new to Anvil’ is an IC-way of saying ‘I’m new and maybe need help.’ Many people will try to assist if they know you’re new.

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Headshots might be lightly discouraged, but they still happen pretty often, simply because so many blows get delivered over the course of a battle. I use a pike, so they happen to me a lot less than to shield users, but still probably at least once or twice a year (more often when I used to use a greatsword or poleaxe). Handily, I wear a nicely padded helmet and haven’t had a hard head blow as yet, but I’d never be surprised to take a hit there. Only you can judge your own health needs though, and whether you can take the risk.

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Blows to the head can happen by accident, of course. For example, if your character reaches zero hit-points so you’re lying on the ground and fighting is still going on around you, someone might fall on you or kick you by accident: it has been known to happen, though I don’t have the experience to say whether it’s common. Or in a wooded area you might fail to duck under a branch.