A Conversation for Role-playing

HELP from gamers!

Post 1


Hi, I'm a SubEditor working on an Entry about the Camarilla, a fan club for White Wolf, creator of LARPs, apparently. The author of the entry seems to be missing in action, and I'm wondering if I can find a gaming savvy type to answer a question that even a Google search hasn't helped me with.

Here's a link to the entry I'm editing:


...and here's a bit quoted from it:


What on Earth is Mind's Eye Theater? I get the impression it was an early LARP game whose rules have been taken as a sort of standard, but I'd like to see that in writing, from someone who knows.

Thanks to anyone who can help me with useful information.

HELP from gamers!

Post 2

Ion the Naysayer

Mind's Eye Theatre (MET) is essentially synonymous with LARP.

If you look at White Wolf's website (http://www.white-wolf.com/) you will notice a link "MET" in the navigation bar. MET is the all-encompasing term for LARP rule books.

The cover of the Vampire LARP rule book, for example, has the following printed on it:

Mind's Eye Theatre
Laws of the Night

Revised Rules for Playing Vampires

The Masquerade

Hope this helps.

HELP from gamers!

Post 3


Wow. Sometimes, posting at h2g2 can be like throwing a message in a bottle into the ocean - an answer might wash up some months later. Thanks for replying, Ion! smiley - biggrin

I submitted that entry back at the beginning of November, and I basically explained the passage that had confused me (the one I quoted above) by adding this footnote, suggested by... someone, I can't remember whom:


Does that basically sound accurate?

HELP from gamers!

Post 4

Ion the Naysayer

As I was browsing around I did indeed find the entry that contained the footnote but only after I had posted. Live and learn I guess smiley - smiley

I don't think simplification is necessarily fair or accurate (okay, I'm a little biased because I'm a LARP player) since the rules aren't any more simple, they're just streamlined a little so that challenges don't interrupt the flow of the game.

An example would be:

In the Pen & Paper / Tabletop version of VtM, you might want to jump across from one rooftop to another. You would add together the appropriate character attributes and abilities to give you a number of dice to roll. The Storyteller (GM, DM, et. al.) would tell you what number you needed to roll and on how many dice in order to succeed. Then you would roll with options to reroll based on certain conditions, etc., etc.. Needless to say this takes a little while.

In a LARP setting challenges can't take that long because groups are generally bigger and smooth story flow (i.e. quick conflict resolution) is more important. To make things go faster, there would be a rock-paper-scissors that would determine if you succeeded or failed. If you failed you could declare a retest based on your character stats. This would keep up until you either succeeded or ran out of stats to retest with.

I'm not sure if you would want to include this in the footnote (or if it's even necessary) but here it is anyway smiley - smiley

It's probably also worth mentioning that there are fairly straightforward rules for moving characters back and forth between VtM and MET.

HELP from gamers!

Post 5


Here's another of those out-of-the-blue responses that comes months after the original posting.

What concerned me was the statement that "Mind's Eye Theatre was essentially synonymous with LARP". This is definitely not true.

Mind's Eye Theatre (MET) is White Wolf's published set of live roleplay rules. There are others. MET may be more common in some areas, but they are not the be-all and end-all of live roleplaying.

There is a particular live roleplaying style which is popular at games conventions in Australia, known as the 'Freeform'. This predates Mind's Eye Theatre rules by a number of years. There are also 'mock-combat' roleplaying styles where players run around with foam weapons. I understand that this style is popular in Britain. This is also known as Live Roleplaying or LARP, and it also predates MET.

So there is, after all, more to Live Roleplaying than 'Mostly Harmless".

HELP from gamers!

Post 6

Ion the Naysayer

Well, Mind's Eye Theatre is synonymous with LARP but the reverse is not necessarily true. There are definitely other forms of LARP out there but the entry that this relates to is about the Camarilla, so if you substitute "LARP" in place of "Mind's Eye Theatre", you end up with an equivalent entry.

I wasn't meaning to imply that MET is the only kind of LARP, just that in that particular entry, MET and LARP are equivalent.

Actually I know of at least two mock-combat LARPs in my area (near Toronto, Canada).

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