Within a week we, will send out the short descriptions. Most likely we’ll not send them in one large batch, as it’s an enormous task to send out that many individual emails. Thus we ask for your patience: we know that you are very anxious to get more information, and we promise to work as fast as we can. The amount of information in the short descriptions is also not entirely even (due to different character processes), so some might get a bit more information than others.
What everyone will receive:
*Of course, every character who is a parent has the risk of facing the theme “loss of a child”, and every character in the larp has a risk of facing the theme of “loss of a loved one” as we have no control over the actions of players. However, these themes are specifically marked for characters who are involved in something we have planned, and thus are much more likely to encounter the themes during the larp. The same goes for other triggers as well: we can take these into account based on our plans, but things may change based on players’ actions during the larp.
What happens next?
First, we ask you to read carefully through your short description and check your assigned costume, shift, and the genders of your romantic contacts. Similarly, please check that there are no people you don’t want to play with among your closest contacts. You can find the genders of the characters in the player list. We have done our best to avoid any errors, but it is always possible some have slipped through our fingers.
The preferred shift as well as costume wishes were something we were not able to put much emphasis on. The same applies to players you asked to play with. However, if these are key factors for a successful larp, please let us know!
If you have any concerns regarding your short description, please contact us by email as soon as possible! We cannot reply to individual concerns or issues in the Facebook group, so please use email. In the email, please tell us how serious your concerns are. Is it a minor concern (but you are happy with the character even if we can’t fix the issue) or do you feel that your character is not at all what you can play? Or anything in-between. Please be as specific as possible. Let us also know how you would wish us to proceed. Would you prefer to keep the same character but fix the issues, and if that is not possible, change the character, or would you prefer to just switch the character to another? Let us also know if the issue is big enough that you will cancel the larp if we are not able to fix it.
Note that it is only possible to switch characters through organizers! We do not allow direct switching as there are lot of contacts, wishes, trigger themes, and secrets involved.
If you wish to switch your character, please let tell us what you would like to play and what would you want to avoid. Be as specific as possible, and let us know what is the primary thing you want for your character (eg. character group, theme, play with someone etc.). Please also consider that after receiving your short description, you might already know some rather big secrets that your new character wouldn’t know and you as a player need to ignore.
Some important secrets are already revealed in the short descriptions. Please help us keep them a secret until the larp (though hopefully not until the end of it). This means that it is not allowed to share your short descriptions with the other players (or anyone else for that matter). When you introduce your character to your co-players, consider what would be public information and what wouldn’t. If in doubt, you can always ask the organizers. We will remove posts than contain secrets from the facebook groups.
Names and shifts
We’ve received a few questions concerning the feminine or masculine names of certain characters. All the character names (excluding the few with set gender) are picked from gender neutral name generators. They are all names that can be used for any gender, but of course in some countries or cultures they probably have either masculine or feminine ring to them. In the world of Odysseus, all names are considered gender neutral, so it is not possible to determine the gender of the character based on their name. We will provide other means to identify genders to help determine which pronouns (he/she/they) should be used for the characters. We ended up choosing this approach so that we are better able to cast people of different genders to the characters on the different runs without the need to change all the markings that we will do in various databases.
There are three different work shifts (as well as no shift (n/a) ). These shifts are Solar (on duty 04-12, off-duty 12-16, on duty 16-20, sleep 20-04), Lunar (sleep 04-12, on duty 12-16, off-duty 16-20, on-duty 20-04) and Ghost (on-call (08/)10-22(/24), off-duty 22-10 - exact time might vary). Ghost shift will share the on-duty responsibilities with lunar/solar shifts during the day and be off-duty/sleeping during the night.
Characters who start the larp in a different location (Velian/Atlantis/Solaris) also have marked shifts indicating the shift they are most likely drafted to (instructed to players in commanding positions by the organizers). Some characters are also in a position where they have not yet agreed to work on a shift, and it is up to the players to make the decision.
We know that you are eager to start planning things and maybe getting some background or extra contacts for your character, but we need to ask you to not to do that. We will soon provide the descriptions for the world, culture, religion and politics for everyone, and your full character will include history, agenda, plots, contacts, and recent events. Thus, as is typical in a Finnish larp, you do not have to do any extra planning or contacting. Everything will be provided by us.
However, it is possible and even encouraged to get to know your character and your contacts, and to add some flesh around the bones on at least culture and religion. Even so, please don’t do that until you have received all the information from us. The short descriptions are just that: short descriptions, and they do not contain all the information. Thus, do not start creating background or extra contacts for your character based on the short description.
The full character sheets will be sent out sometime in May along with all the briefings. After that, it will be possible to create a few light contacts, but these should not overshadow the prewritten ones!
As the organizers, we are excited and determined to provide a memorable experience for all our players, so feel free to contact us if you have any concerns! Still, bear in mind that there will be some (hopefully light) issues that cannot be helped. For example, shifts are created to enable shared play time with your contacts, so it might not be possible to change them without it having a severe negative effect on the experience. Even so, we do our very best to accommodate your wishes!
Laura, Producer of Odysseus
Casting a larp is an enormous task, especially when you need to match 104 characters with 104 players ...for three subsequent runs. Well, let’s just say that we’ve had quite a busy week behind us. Our casting team spent 35+ hours going through the players’ answers to the casting questionnaire, and matching them to our available characters. Before that, our hero Ville had already spent countless hours processing the data for the script and running your answers through it.
We’ve done our very best to make sure everyone gets the experience they are aiming for. However, as always, some compromises were required, and it was of course impossible to fulfill every single wish.
We used this priority list in trying to find an enjoyable character for each of our players:
What ended up not influencing the casting (except in some rare cases):
All in all, we are very happy with the results and on how many wishes we were able to accommodate. However, no matter how many hours we put into this, we are bound to have made some errors. We’ve been going through Excel sheets for the past week and a half, so even though we’ve checked and double-checked and triple-checked, there might still be errors. So, how to proceed from here?
First, we will publish the casting document for each run. You get to know the name, job title, and starting group of your character right away. Within a week or two, we will send everyone further information. You will receive a short description of your character, your preliminary shift (if any), costume information, the character groups your character belongs to (some characters have up to five character groups and some just one), the age of your character, and the list of your character’s closest contacts. The list is not your final contact list, but these are the most important ones. There is also information in case your character has a predetermined fate, or if there are other very important aspects involved (though sleeper agents are not revealed at this point).
We would kindly ask you to wait until you receive this latter personal information email before contacting us in case you have concerns, as not every character is what they seem they are. It saves us a lot of time and effort, as then we don’t need to answer questions for which the information is already soon on its way. If you have concerns or questions after receiving this email, whether about themes, close contacts, character groups, shifts, or other aspects of the game, do not hesitate to contact us!
In case you have major concerns regarding your character, it might be possible to swap characters or make some minor adjustments. If there is nothing we can do instantly, there are bound to be cancellations during spring, and we might be able to switch characters later on.
That said, we encourage you to embrace the themes, aspects, and unknown players, and to dive head first into your character. If your closest friends haven’t been cast as your contacts, you can take that as an opportunity to get to know awesome new people you just haven’t larped with before!
We would like to remind you that the short description is just that: a short description. Even though it tries to capture some of the meaningful themes for your character, there are loads of things it does not touch on. There are lot of stuff in store for every character!
So, all in all, this casting was an enormous task, and it sure felt like an impossible one for a few times along the way. But we did it! We hope you are as giddy and excited when you receive your characters as we were when we cast them.
Laura, Producer of Odysseus
Blog is written by several members of the production team.