The Solmukohta Books 2016 – Kaisa Kangas and Jukka Särkijärvi

Editors Kaisa Kangas and Jukka Särkijärvi present the two 2016 Solmukohta (Knutepunkt) books: Larp Realia, and Larp Politics (both available as free pdf downloads).

Jukka highlights the varied content of Larp Realia – ranging from an article about a larp buit around actual fistfighting to the first food recipe in the long history of the Knute-books!

Kaisa talks about the new volume – subtitled “Systems, Theory and Gender in Action” – on the political dimension of larp. Among the topics are themes like refugees, fascism, experiences of larping as gay or trans, larp as labour, viewing larps with political science tools, and so on. A big section of the book is about political larps (including educational larps) from a range of countries. To the editor’s surprise, no articles about internal larp community politics were submitted. This is probably a sign of health!

Read the books

Kaisa Kangas is a Finnish larp designer who has been playing and making larps for 20 years. She is the fiction lead for the Palestinian-Finnish political larp Halat hisar (State of Siege) that will be run again in June 2016. She is also involved with designing and running educational larps for University of Arts Helsinki. Her other works include Ghost Express (2001-2002, together with Dare Talvitie), a pioneer of pervasive larp. She holds a Ph.D. in mathematics and a BA in Japanese Studies.

Jukka Särkijärvi is a writer, editor, translator, game designer, conrunner and Pathfinder Society Venture-Captain Emeritus from Espoo, Finland. He is currently working on his master’s thesis in English language and literature at the University of Tampere. His previous work include translations of the Stalker and Whispering Road role-playing games, game design on Vihan lapset, a great deal of role-playing game journalism for a variety of publications both on- and offline, and Roolipelikirja, a nonfiction book about role-playing games.

“What’s a Woman’s Role? Female Characters In Larps”. Lecture by Kaisa Kangas at the Ropecon 2015 convention

 

Framing Art with Larp – Ebba Petren

Ebba Petrén works as director, script writer and performer in the field of performing arts. Her works in arts collective Nyxxx is participatory and do often use tech to design play.

In this talk she tells about how she larped, became bothered and did something about it. This process opened the gate to a whole new artistic field.

Nyxxx.se

Making Mandatory Larps for non players – Miriam Lundqvist

Every year, Miriam and her colleagues from LajvVerkstaden runs more than a hundred days of larping. Most of these larps are done with players who have to participate and have never larped before. In this short talk Miriams shares some of her knowledge of how the running and design is different in these games.

Miriam is the founder and director of LajvVerkstaden. LajvVerkstaden (The Larp Workshop) works with larps as a tool to create interactive educational experiences. The company’s projects are created in collaboration with schools, museums, businesses and NGOs and are designed to give participants learning experiences that reach them on an intellectual, physical and emotional level.

Larp and – Eleanor Saitta

Nordic larp and tools we’ve developed to design and understand games provide a unique toolkit for understanding the cultural and emotional impact of systems that bridge the social and the technical, infrastructural, or political worlds. The 21st century will be defined more than anything by the social impact of infrastructural systems, so let’s look at how larp can interact with other disciplines.

Eleanor Saitta is a hacker, designer, artist, writer, and barbarian. She makes a living and a vocation of understanding how complex, transdisciplinary systems operate and redesigning them to work, or at least fail, better. Among other things, Eleanor is a co-founder of the Trike project, Technical Director at the International Modern Media Institute, a member of the advisory boards at the Freedom of the Press Foundation and Geeks Without Bounds, a contributor to the Briar project, and freelance security architecture and strategy consultant. She is nomadic and lives mostly in airports and occasionally in New York, London, and Stockholm.

Does larp design matter? – Eirik Fatland

Can larp design be used for something more than creating stories to live in? Interaction designer and larwright does think so. Going through a cascade of different larp projects one thing stands out, with larp design you can direct human creativity into a shared purpose.

Full transcript of the talk.

Eirik Fatland is a larpwright and interaction designer from Norway and has has since 1994 been involved in the design of around 10-15 larps. Both for dark of dark, ambitious larps with political themes (Europa, Inside:Outside, and PanoptiCorp) and strongly narrative and occasionally comedic larps (Moirais Vev, Marcellos Kjeller, What Happened at Lanzarote). He was the editor of Larp, the Universe and Everything (2009) and has written several articles for the Knutepunkt books, larp magazines and at his website The larpwright.

Site: The larpwright

Halat hisar – State of Siege – Kaisa Kangas

How is life under occupation? A team of Finnish and Palestinian organizers created the larp Halat hisar, which took place in a modern day Finland under a fictional occupation.

Halat hisar (State of Siege in English, Piiritystila in Finnish) was held near Parkano, a small town in southern Finland, the 15th – 17th of November 2013. About 70 people participated, coming from Finland, Palestine, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany and the U.K.

The story took place in at the university of Helsinki, in a Finland occupied by the fictional nation of Uralia. At the university there was student council elections and preparations for the Great Literature and Humanities Conference. This as well as other events caused sparks among the students.

Halat hisar in the Nordic Larp Wiki
Halat hisar webiste

Kaisa Kangas is a Finnish larpwright. Her most recent game is Ha- lat hisar (2013) in which she was in charge of the fiction. Earlier works include Ghost Express (with Dare Talvitie, 2001-2002), a campaign that pioneered pervasive larp in Finland. She holds a M.Sc. in mathematics and a BA in East Asian Studies, and is currently working on her Ph.D. in mathematical logic.

Sketching larp – Bjarke Pedersen

How can we simplify the way larps are designed? In this talk Bjarke wants to inspire designers not only to create more great larps by working with sketching as a method. “Why in the larp community do you not sketch?”

Bjarke Pedersen has played, designed and organised larps since the late nineties. He runs the Copenhagen-base company Odyssé which focuses interactive storytelling, larping and participatory events.  He is one of the founders of Denmark’s largest larp-organization Rollespilsfabrikken. His work spans everything fro

m children’s larps to interactive performance pieces at major international art museums in Europe and USA.

Site: bjarkep.com
Twitter: @bjarcore

 

Political larping – Strategies to make a larp accessible to non-larpers – Siri Sandquist

Suffragett was a larp about the Suffragette movement that fought for womens right to vote in the early 20th century. The vision of the larp was to be both political by educating the participants about history but also in how the put inclusiveness on top of their agenda. Siri Sandquist from the organizing teams explains their thoughts. 

Siri Sandquist holds two master degrees in archaeology specializing in gender theory and contextual archaeology. In 2014 she took part in organizing her first larp together with Susanne Vejdemo, Daniel Armyr and Cecilia Billskog. Suffragett! was a larp aimed at nonlarpers as well as already active larpers focused around the feminist movement for vote in the beginning of the 20th century where Siri was in charge of roles and fiction. 

Twitter: @sillysiri

Playing as human or robot – Carl Heath

Is it possible to roleplay together with a robot with artificial intelligence? Human and Machine is a psycho-technological theater experiment at the crossroads between man and machine, where the aim is to explore the encounter between man and machine in a context where they are fully engaged on stage, acting, in real time. In this early experiment, Carl Heath talks about the possibilities of the project together with Robert Bolin and Michael Schade.

Human and Machine is a collabortation between Scenlaboratioret, The Collaboratory and Interactive Institute Swedish ICT.

Carl Heath focuses on research and development projects regarding ICT and learning and learning perspectives in game studies. Prior to his current position at the Interactive Institute, Carl has worked for the Swedish Armed Forces, National Theatre Company, Sverok (The Swedish Gaming Federation), The National Council of Swedish Youth Organisations (LSU), the IT consultancy firm Technohuman, and GR (The Gothenburg Region of Local Authorities). Carl is the founder of GR Experiential Learning (now a part of The GR Pedagogical Centre) and the last two years, between 2010 and 2012, he was the Director of the Division of Educational Cooperation, as well as the Director of the GR Upper Secondary School Admissions Office. He has designed numerous larps and educational games. Carl has an educational background at the University of Gothenburg, where he studied political science, social science, pedagogy and ICT.

Twitter: @carlheath