Character Building

Sometimes, I am such a nerd.

Now, most of you who know me or have read any of my blog posts here know that I am a LARPer. In fact, I have been a LARPer for about 4 years now. I started with a game called Heroic Realms (which, I still am a part of, but due to ankle injury have not been able to go at all this year). I have played a one shot Star Wars game. I have looked into the possibility of joining various Camarilla games (Vampire: The Masquerade and Vampire: The Requiem) and I am an active player in a post apocalyptic game called Dystopia Rising. I love it.

I’m feeling like such a nerd because while I have an active character at Dystopia who will hopefully last quite a few more games, I’m already working on the next character.

Let me explain in a little more detail.

My current character is Jeanie. She is an escaped slave from a location currently known as the Iron works (formally known as the Windy City and surrounding areas). She is a race called the Iron Slave. She is an Engineer and a Mad Scientist. She is a follower of the Church of Darwin and actually the spiritual leader for Darwinists in the town (To the point of having the title of Curie). Despite being free for over a year now, she still struggles with living as a free individual, which is understandable given the 22 years of slavery that she lived from birth til her escape. She is a great character. So many little quirks and such. She is incredibly intelligent and incredibly socially awkward. She is so much fun to play.

However, circumstances have seen that she may not survive very long. Since coming into the town just over a year ago, she has already died twice. You start game with an infection rate. Your character is infected with the zombie virus. Plain and simple. When you die, the Gravemind (essentially the hivemind of all zombies) pulls you to him. (For some reason, I’ve decided that he is male.) The virus takes over. The body is reanimated. Then your mind regains control. For most people it is a terrifying process to go through. It is so difficult that you return from the gravemind with a derangement or a mental illness of some kind. Each trip through the Gravemind makes your infection rate drop. So, when I first died and went through the gravemind, I went from 4 infection to 3 infection. When I died the second time, I went from 3 infection to 2 infection. When you die for the last time (go from 1 infection to 0 infection) the virus completely takes over. The mind is no longer strong enough to handle regaining control. You are a zombie and you now attack the town. (They actually have you stay in your character outfit, put on zed make up, give you a zed type and you attack the town til you are killed off).

As an Iron Slave, Jeanie had an infection rate of four. All characters have infection rates based on their strain of humanity. I currently have an infection rate of two. That means I can return from the gravemind one more time. Now, many people are saying that I won’t die any time soon. Jeanie is the Curie for the Church of Darwin, making her a town leader and most people don’t target town leaders. She is also the Chief Engineer for the Good Doctor Incorporated as well as the adopted daughter of the creator of that organization. She has the entirety of GDI watching out for her. She also has just found out that the entirety of the New Williamspoint Commune is also watching out for her. So, on one hand, people will argue (constantly) that she is very safe in town.

On the other hand, I know (as a player, not as Jeanie) that there are individuals in town who have decided to target Jeanie. They think she will fetch a good price on the slave market (which, being an Iron Slave is very true). They think that going after the daughter of Doctor Henry Thomas will help take down GDI (which is also very true). Plus, she was blamed for the murder of another character in town, which while she didn’t do it, has angered the town enough to make her a target of Murder, Inc (the assassin’s guild). So, for every thing that she has going for her to keep her alive, she has something trying to make her dead.

So what does this mean? It means that I will be very surprised if Jeanie survives another year of game. She has been around for only a year and I will be surprised if she makes it to her second year anniversary in play. I really do.

Because of this, I have started designing a second character (complete with costuming) to play as soon as Jeanie dies. She isn’t completely worked out yet and some of this is still possible to change, but here is what I have so far.

Meet Kira Sheehan. Kira is a “Bay Walker” from an area of The Mass known as Beacon Hill. She grew up with in a family of 5, all followers of the Cult of Fallow Hopes. Her parents were a Doctor and Tinker who spent most of their time and money trying to help others. They would arm others to make sure that the message of God could spread and abominations would be destroyed (cause if they were gone than the survivors were helped, in their mind). Her two brothers became a priest and a Caravan Driver and they went off to continue bringing God’s justice down upon the world.

Now, Bay Walkers are incredibly intelligent people. They learn quickly and they are excellent teachers. They have specific rules and orders that they feel govern society and people need to live by those rules and that society. They look out for each other. They stick together.

The reason I said Kira was a “Bay Walker” with quotations is because, Kira has mutated. Mutations do exist. She has severe learning disabilities. She cannot learn as well as her family can. She cannot teach the way her family can. She despises the order and rules of Bay Walker society. She despises the way her Fallow Hopes family wants to impose God’s so called justice upon everyone. This severely bothers Kira.

Kira’s mutation technically makes her a Remnant. But, as she was born and raised in Bay Walker society to a Bay Walker family, she will always say that she is a Bay Walker. She does what she wants, when she wants. If she wants it, she takes it. She was sick and tired of her family, so she lived her way. She was a follower of the Light of Hedon. The problem with this is that, it got her into trouble. A lot. She would be caught stealing. She got caught cheating at cards. She got caught messing around. She got caught doing all sorts of things. And it got her into a lot of trouble. Her family kept threatening to disown her for her actions. Not to mention the Nuclear Family mob like group in the area was angered enough to put a hit out on her head. So she left Beacon Hill and has since made her way to town.

So, here I am, still happily playing one character and excitedly building another.

I’m such a nerd.

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