A number of safety mechanics is emplyed in the game. Those mechanics serve to either communicate your discomfort during certain scenes to adjust their intensity or even stop the scene or the game entirely:
Stopping the scene
Red STOP is a hard stop of the game. When you use Red STOP, the entire game will stop until the issue is resolved. Red STOP should be used when the scene you are in is either too distressful for you as a player or when someone has been injured. After the situation has been resolved, the game will continue.
I must go to confession is a mechanic allowing you to leave the scene you are uncomfortable with for various reasons. This mechanic does not stop the game for other players and only ends the current scene you are in at the moment. I must go to confession should be used when you are uncomfortable with where the scene is going or when you don’t know how to proceed (and need to seek organisers for advice). We are always at your disposal when such situations occur and will be glad to help you with any problems.
Adjusting the scene intensity
The following mechanics can be used when you want to adjust the game intensity as a player. These mechanics are designed to drive the interrogation between gentle and more naturalistic:
Virgin Mary, stand by me! is a mechanic that does not stop the game nor the ongoing scene. It should be used when you feel like the current scene is discomfortable to you and the other participants should be less aggresive/loud/intense.
God is by my side! is a mechanic that lets other participants of the scene (e.g. inquisitor, torturer) that you would enjoy more pressure as a player and they may use more aggresive methods of psychological pressure, shout more, etc.
Shame on the false prophets! is a mechanic that lets ither participants of the scene know that you are okay with more physical discomfort and they may use more torture methods for example.
It is possible that your character is facing serious threats and your friends want to help protect you (e.g. from interrogation). If you as a player want to experience the scene and you don’t want to be saved by other characters, you can tell the other players:
I will face my fate alone! It is a mechanic that lets other players (e.g. your friends) know that you don’t want their help and they will leave you to your fate.
We believe that a certain degree of physical experience is important for the overall game experience. This might be uncomfortable for some of you. Nevertheless, we want to give you reasonably realistic experience of medieval life and we believe that a few minutes of physical or psychological discomfort might enhance your game experience. The main source of discomfort during the game will be the interrogation by either the inquisition or other parties. Not everyone will be interrogated. Nobility, clergy and pregnant (in-game) women will most probably not be interrogated. The other characters must assume that there is a possibility that they might be interrogated in the torture chamber.
The level of both physical and psychological discomfort in the game and in any interrogation is entirely up to each player.
You van expect to experience following forms of physical aggression:
- A touch on your shoulder by the executioner to hold you in place
- A few moments of kneeling on the ground
- Theater slap
- Whipping of a bench next to you (to imitate flogging)
If you are okay with more discomfort, you can expect:
- Gentle immobilization (your hand will be tied loosely with a soft rope)
- Gentle flogging (with a soft rope over all layers of clothing)
- Tying your hands loosely behind your back and slowly pulling your arms up to the ceiling (to immitate Strappado)
ALL THESE DEGREES ARE PURELY VOLUNTARY AND THERE ARE CLEARLY DEFINED MECHANISMS TO FACILITATE AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE INTERROGATOR AND THE INTERROGATED.
There are several supporting mechanisms connected to the torture chamber:
If you believe that your character is really tough, your character will not tell anything they don’t want to. At least not on the first try. When the inquisitor applies a higher degree of torture, you should reveal a small secret even if your character is really tough. Don’t make the inquisitor depressed that no one will say a thing. The inquisitor can use up to 4 degrees of torture and every character that is interrogated will eventually share some secrets. It is an integral part of the game. Don’t try to keep your secrets for yourself the whole game.
You can of course use RED STOP or I must go to confession (to leave the scene). You can also use off-game whispering with the executioner, you can let him know if you can take more discomfort if you need to relax the pressure. There afoerementioned three in-game sentences (Virgin Mary, stand by me!; God is by my side!; Shame on the false prophets!) can be used in communication with the executioner and the inquisitor.
Outside of the torture chamber, any in-game violence is always only theatrical – there should be absolutely minimal physical contact between the players – the maximum allowed is clenching front loose side of the clothes (where a lapel would be if you had a coat or a jacket) and gentle shaking.
We leave the level of intimacy up to the players, we only give the maximum allowed level. The absolute maximum level of intimacy allowed in-game includes:
- a gentle hug
- a kiss on a cheek
- holding hands in public
Please leave other intimacies to your private moments before and after the game. Also if you have someone close to you participating in the game. This limitation is there to ensure general comfort of players.
Any in-game sexual intercourse will be played as taking off your headdress and a hugging briefly.
We would like to stress that rape or any other type of forced intercourse is not one of the topics of the game and any (in-game) forced sexual intercourse must be consulted with the organizers in advance.
Game mechanics connected to punishment
A typical punishment that might appear in the game is a fine, penance or payment of damages
A game mechanic for branding will be introduced in pre-game workshops (it is absolutely safe, painless and you can wash it off effortlessly after the game)
Pillory will be used as one of the punishments (approximately 15 minutes, not a real pillory, just mock binding to a tree trunk and in-game public shaming)
Prison (15 minutes in the dungeon with windows)
There will be no hanging, burning at stake will not happen before Saturday evening (there will be no actual fire involved, your safety will not be threatened)
The act of registration to this game also constitutes a consent of the player that they will under all circumstances behave in a manner that does not put their or anyone else’s life, health or property at risk. Alcohol consumption is allowed during the game but the players consent that they will drink responsibly. Consumption of other psychotropic drugs is strictly forbidden.
The players declare that they will treat the premises and equipment of the state castle Lipnice with utmost care knowing that the castle is a National Cultural Treasure. The players will not damage in any way the building itself or any of the property within it, they will not cut into plastering, damage floors and they will immediately notify the organizers in case of spillage.
The players will also treat with utmost care any items and costumes provided to them by the organizers.
The players will be respectful to other players. The players will not disrupt the game with their behaviour (by talking about topics not related to the game and the setting). If they feel the need to step out of the role, they will do so strictly in premises dedicated to such purpose.
Our games are strictly non-smoking. Smoking players will respect this and they will only smoke in a designated smoking area.
The set-up of our games does not create situations where the lives of players would be in danger. However, accidents can happen even under the least expected circumstances and we are prepared for such situations. During our dramatical LARPs, a trained health professional is always present and we are ready to call an ambulance in case of an emergency.