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by Doctor Rotwang


After much pondering, thinking, ruminating and otherwise watching paint dry, I believe I've finally figured out how I can get the cute gamer chicks to play RPGs with me:

I'll run a LARP.

Let's face it. The ladies aren't into THAC0s and strike ranks and Stun Points and SAN rolls and other such manly implements - they're all into dressing up in black dresses and pretending to be vampires and making gang signs at each other.

So. To get sexy gamer girls....I'll run my OWN LARP.

How hard can THAT be?

I'll get to it as soon as I finish liberating the Guatemalans from the Ursine invasion currently plaguing them. Damned Ursines.


The Guatemala thing has kinda gotten quiet lately, so now I find myself with some free time to design my LARP.

Having decided, as I did, to eschew (what DOES that mean?!) the traditional "Vampire" milieu, my first task is to decide upon a game setting. Casting an eye about the Rotwang Mansion in search of inspiration (and ready-made props), here is what I see:

  • a chair
  • a bed
  • New Wave CDs
  • 200 lbs ground beef
  • Erik Estrada, former co-star of TV's "CHiPs"

Hmn. This will take some creative thinking, indeed!


Eschew. Milieu. Eschew. Milieu. Eschew. Milieu. Eschew. Milieu. Eschew. Milieu. Eschew. Milieu. What does this all MEAN?!


Okay, here's my LARP idea:

GULARP -- the Generic Universal Live-Action Role-Playing Thing. Okay, so GULARPT. No, no, that makes it sound like it already happened. How about -- LARPMaster? We could have charts and critical hit tables and....naaaah, just GULARP.

On a slightly-related note, Erik Estrada has taken to complaining in a loud voice when I'm trying to concentrate. His incessant cries of "Where am I?!", "Let me out of here, you mad sonofabitch!" and "How about a 'CHiPs' LARP?" are getting on my nerves. I told him to have some of the beef and to shut the hell up for a while; let's see if it works.


I hate to admit it, but the little punk (Estrada) is actually proving to be half-way useful.

Around a mouthful of beef, he commented, "Hey, man, if you want the SEXY gamer chicks to show, you gotta run the "Vampire" game, know what I'm sayin'? C'mon, man, black dresses, right?" He has a point. So I've decided that since GULARP is 'Universal', it'll be OK to have vampire chicks in it. Of course this means 'Vampire' guys standing around trying to look cool (or just fruity), but, hey. Omelette/eggs, right? So I gave the guy (Estrada) his kudos, and then hit him on the head for bothering me while I was executing a commando mission to cut off the Ursine supply lines to the capital of Guatemala. Dumbass.


Here's the top-secret plot for my very first LARP session, then: Lots of people show up one night at the mansion of the brilliant Dr Rotwang. They hang out and stuff, and like some of 'em have information the others want and vice-versa, and they all try to get that info etcetera; and then an NPC drops dead, and everything goes bat-guano nuts as the players all jockey for social standing and others try to figure out who killed the NPC and blah blah blah blah blah. Whatever. It'll work.

Estrada suggested that he'd like to play an NPC called "Escapee From Rotwang's Evil Lair", but I said, "Nuh-UH, you is gonna be 'Dr Rotwang's Trusty Waiter'." I had to buy 200 more pounds of beef to bribe him into it, but that's OK.


With a date, plot, and scheme in place, I made up a flier and went to the copy shop to have them, uh, you know, make some copies. It's one of those 'gimmick' copy shops -- in addition to photocopiers, they have a bunch of monks chained to tables who spend decades transcribing your documents. Slow as hell, but you should see the illuminations!

Very charming young lady working the desk there, by the name of Stephanie. Clavicle-length black hair, eyes you don't wanna climb out of. "What's this flier for?" she asked, and I explained. "You're invited," I said on a whim, "if you'd like to come." She smiled and said she might.

I was liking this Stephanie girl. She didn't give off Cherenkov radiation like so many other girls.

So then I went to the game shop to hand out some fliers. Lotsa geeks there. Might be a swell turnout.


Estrada on my nerves again. I was trying to put together some fake swords and stuff, you know, for the game, and he started ranting about how this was never gonna work, and that I was stupid, and that who ever heard of a fake sword made from oatmeal? So I told him to shut the hell up (again) and to go clean out HPL Sector of the Mansion.


EUREKA! The little punk Estrada came through!

So it turns out that if he puts his sneakers over his ears and chants, "Eschew, Milieu, Mise-en-Scene! Eschew, Milieu, Mise-en-Scene!", Erik Estrada can -- get this, now --


It's true! He got the idea from a book he found whilst cleaning up like I told him to. So anyway, we tried it out -- and boom! All of a sudden we were on this jungle island paradise, and there were these pyramids, and these villagers and the chief had a beautiful daughter, but she was kinda stuck up so I let Erik flirt with her, but he pissed her off and she slapped him and condemned him to death as a sacrifice to Lurthu the Volcano God, so I had to sneak up on them at the rim of the volcano to save him (if only because he had my keys), and I saved him but the volcano god got mad, too, and he came out of the volcano, so we had to run down past the fireballs and then the dinosaurs were attacking the village but I defeated them so the villagers and Lurthu chilled out and we all learned a lesson about how man should respect people of all cultures but the princess was still a bitch so we left.

Anyway, we're back at the Mansion now and I took a shower. This Dimensional Portal thing is just blowing my mind. The LARPing possibilities are endless! I'm thinking "any scenery/props/snacks I WANT." More beef for Estrada!


Ever wrestle a giant bear from space? They smell funny.

Finished up the whole Guatemala thing. In a daring pre-dawn raid on the Ursine stronghold, Erik Estrada and I usurped power from Yaoh-Gigh or whatever hey call their leader (whom I defeated one-on-one), while the Guatemalan Army valiantly battled the Ursine weapons platforms. Turns out the only vehicle the Guatemelan Army had was a 1976 VW Van, but we turned it into a badass mobile armored strike unit with a surplus copy of "Car Wars" and some spackle. Vulcan Machine Guns, Fire-Linked, Top Turret IN YOUR FACE, Ursine Bastards! Oh, and the Ursines hate it when you spray paint on their windshields.


With GULARP just days away, Erik Estrada and I have been busy running back and forth through the Portal. The amount of swag we've collected is quite a sight to see! The Atlanteans decided they'd rather sink their continent than lend me some collosal statues, though. So I just waited 'till they all finished their Leonardo DiCaprio impressions, and took the statues anyway. Stupid Atlanteans! I win.


GULARP day. The event starts in three hours. I'm nervous. But I have my costume ready to go, and everything's in place, and Erik Estrada finally shut the hell up and put on his chicken costume after I hit him on the head with a bazooka. Butterflies in my stomach! This oughtta be good. Of course, the plot has, by now, undergone a series of revisions (Estrada's crayola-scribbled "totally dope character stuff" notwithstanding). Here's what I'm planning:

Several groups of people, all of them representing some supernatural/other-dimensional/ultratechnological society/organization/cabal/gang or whatever arrive at Rotwang's Stately Manor for the unveiling of a particular, revolutionary secret -- how to beat Rubik's Cube in fifteen moves. While Rotwang (Me!) ambles around his party, greeting and entertaining his guests, Dr. Rotwang's Trusty Waiter (Estrada) runs around dropping hints that there may be something more to this than meets the eye. So of course he becomes a pivotal NPC, which means -you guessed it!- that before the REAL secret is unveiled, he mysteriously gets WHACKED. Things HAVE to go that way -- it's traditional in LARPing that a high-placed NPC has to sign up for a dirt nap so that all the players, who were previously glamor-posing and trading hearsay with each other, can wig out and see their petty little plots derailed.

The whole EVENT hinges on Trusty Waiter getting waxed under dubious circumstances. It's THE WAY YOU RUN A LARP. Plus, it works in all those "Murder Mystery" dinner party kits. So that's where I'm headed. Erik Estrada has his instructions to drop dead at 7:45 pm.


I'm not making a thirteenth entry, because, as we all know, the number thirteen is bad luck. I want everything tonight to go as smoothly as it poss--awwwww, CRAP. Hold on, I gotta go call Max von Sydow.


One hour into the event, and man, does it ROCK.

There's gotta be like sixty people in the house, all trying to get each other's dirty laundry and what not. I'm hearin' all kinds of fun things going on, including a plot to diablerize the prince or whatever. I never wrote that, but so much of LARP is improv, so who cares? Now that things are goin' OK, I'm gonna do what I set out to do -- Cruise for gamer chicks.


Okay. ETERNAL NOTE TO SELF: In a "Vampire" LARP, dress + makeup on the OUTSIDE does not always equal Foxy Gamer Girl on the INSIDE That was NOT cool.


Just had to solve a dispute between some, uh, Ass Mites and some Angstnos guys or something. I dunno. Rock-Paper-Scissors, guys who looked like gay bikers, celerity and blood points or whatever. Done and done. Back to cruising, FOR REAL this time.

That girl from the copy shop hasn't shown. That has me kinda down, because not only was she cute and all, but very polite and pleasant all around. I liked Stephanie. She wasn't composed of antimatter like so many other girls are.

Oh, well. Story of my life. Still and all, I just spotted three goth chicks in black dresses (with chokers!) over by the Electric Kool-Aid bowl. I'm on my way! (Incidentally, it's called "Electric Kool-Aid" NOT because it's spiked with drugs or alcohol, which it isn't, but because it's hooked up to a car battery. This explains why the goth chicks' hair is standing on end, but on them it looks good.)


Damnit, now it turns out I'm the BLOODY KING OF GUATEMALA.

I was on my way to chat up the three goth lovelies when I was informed of the fact by the sudden appearance of a Sublight Messenger Llama. (Yes, I KNOW that it's traditionally a Sublight Messenger YAK, but in South America, whaddaya got? Llamas is what. You make do.) So the Messenger Llama gives me the message from the Guatemalans, and a crown, and says that I'm now their king. Damn Guatemalans! Ya liberate them from Giant Space Bear Tyranny and they go and make ya their god-damned King.

So anyway, the llama says that the People of Guatemala want me to come celebrate, right? Well, I had to call them up and tell them I was busy and stuff. And they said, "Oh, man, you know, it'd be cool to celebrate," and I thought for a second and then told them they could come to MY place and LARP with us. They said "OK", so I had Erik Estrada do his chanty-thing and we yanked in the Guatemalans through the portal. They thought it was cool, the whole LARP thing, and they said, "What do we do?" Well, I wanted to back to cruising for chicks so I said, "I dunno, pretend you're Garou or something."

So now, I've got about three million Guatemalans stuffing up my house, right, and they've got their arms over their heads and they're saying things like, "Grrr! I Like The Grateful Dead!" and "Grrrrr! Recycle that! Greenpeace! Grrrr!" It's especially funny 'cause they're doing it all in Spanish, and no one understands them. Hee heee heee! Now, where are all the chicks?


Oh, I found all the chicks all right.

They were in the backyard, under the Atlantean statues.

Huddled uparound a guy in a chicken suit.


Instead of dropping dead like he was SUPPOSED to, being that it was 7:50 pm. I waded into the mass of people and said, "What the hell are you doing?!"
He replied, "Dude, I am the Latino Love Machine!"
And I said, "You jackass! You blew it with the Volcano princess, what makes you think THESE girls will like you?"
And he's all, like, "Well, I used to be Ponch!"
So I'm like, all, "You GOT a paunch, you aging washed-up has-been!"

So he drew his broadsword and came at me.

What was I supposed to do? I whipped out my +4 rapier and parried his wild swings. And that's when I heard, "No real weapons! No real weapons!" and "HEY! This isn't a Camarilla-sanctioned event!" and "Screw this! Let's go play 'Hunter'!"

For a while, I just stood there and stared at him. Then I muttered, "You were supposed to drop dead to advance the plot. Good work. Now everyone's gone, and it's all your fault." Then I hit him on the head with one of the statues and told him to clean things up.

So GULARP is ruined, all because Erik Estrada has a head full of poo-gas. I hate him. Let him get ground beef somewhere else.


Greatest news -- not EVERYONE left.

I was headed toward the Rotwang Mansion Transdimensional Whatchamacallit-thingie, when who did I run into?



Oh-my-god. I couldn't've dreamed her better -- she was a paragon of grace, demure style given form and allowed to walk upon the world of mere mortal men. Jewels, stars, sylvan glades and other nice things flooded my mind. "That was some LARP," she said. "Kinda different, the way you didn't have an NPC drop dead."

*whew*! Close call!

So we talked for a while, and she said she'd had fun, and that it was too bad it was over 'cause then she'd have to leave. "No," I said, "You can stay if you want." She smiled.

She stayed.

We went to the rooftop garden and stayed there all night. Oh, no, we didn't, like, you know, know....IT. We sat and looked at the sky and talked about how nice it was that Duran Duran used to not suck, and we compared our favorite Thomas Dolby songs and basically discovered how well we get along.

Erik Estrada, meanwhile, had to clean up after the llama.


  • Stephanie has become quite the fixture at Rotwang Mansion. She comes over a lot, and can often be seen either reading in the library or skidding through the halls pretending to be Billy Idol or Cyndi Lauper or both. She is SOOOO CUTE when she sneers. I like Stephanie. She's not made of old TV vacuum tubes like so many other girls.
  • The whole Being-King-Of-Guatemala-Thing has been pretty easy, so far. Mostly I just go to mall openings, talk on TV, and help raise the money for a 1984 VW Van to replace the old one. Guatemalans being catholic, however, I often have to entertain The Pope. He comes over and sits down and talks a lot and I just kinda nod, but when he falls asleep I take his big goofy hat and hide it somewhere in the house. Then he has to go looking for it. I think I'm going to hell.
  • Plans for GULARP II are afoot! Steph and I (I call her 'Steph') were talking about what it should be, and she said, "Ditch the vamps and go with "Groupies & Synhesizers", the role-playing game of New Wave Crime Fighters!" and I said, "I haven't written it yet", so she said "Oh, OK". But really we can do whatever we want, even if it'd cost a million dollars, because I figured out Estrada's Dimensional Portal trick -- I found it in that book which, it turns out, is "The Necronomic--"....uh, I have TWO million dollars.
  • Erik Estrada finally figured out how to leave the house (no big feat -- it DOES have a front door), so he's gone now. I don't miss him, but it was kinda nice to have a has-been hanging around, doing stuff for you.

Maybe....maybe I should go ahead and let Anthony Michael-Hall out of the basement.

Dr. Rotwang would like to apologise for any offence to the proud people of Guatemala, or the estate of Erik Estrada, caused by - Oh, heck they're not going to read this! You all suck!

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