Xenophobia has finished
Almost a month ago already, on April 8-10, the last episode of the LARP Xenophobia took place. For the fourth and last time, players imagined themselves in a post-apocalyptic world, some 160 years after the failure of an all-encompassing social network. They made discoveries about the past and agreements about the future. Sacrifices had to be made, and friendships and family relations were put to the test. It was a worthy conclusion to a wonderful series.
I have expanded the page about Xenophobia with a summary of the story and a small selection of photos.
Three years ago, Stichting Lore-ley had just stopped organising LARPs, but I hadn’t had enough yet. It was the week after Xenophobia I, and a couple of enthusiastic players had practically convinced me to join them the next time. That same evening, however, I received an email from the organisation, who were looking for guest game masters. It didn’t take me long to decide. Ever since, I wondered regularly what on earth I had gotten myself into, but looking back, all the work and stress was absolutely worth it.
Xenophobia had a lot of things that I love in stories. The best stories for me are those that are about the characters, the development they go through and the choices they face, not just about the things that happen to them. But also: those where no simple division can be made between good and evil, only between different people each with their own interests and beliefs. The second point worked out great because all the team was on the same wavelength about the setting, but the first was mostly the work of the players, who immersed themselves in their roles so well, playing out all kinds of big and small conflicts, that sometimes all we as game masters had to do was sit back and enjoy the show.
Another of my favourite parts of Xenophobia was the technology, and mainly the impressive, (almost) completely autonomously working puzzles of episodes III and IV. To say that it was a lot of work is the biggest understatement ever, but I am incredibly happy with the end result and with what I have been able to contribute to that.