Living Embers

Family – Normalisation of Dysfunction – Surreal

A dysfunctional family and a choice: keep the family together at all costs, or choose yourself and your freedom? Exploring how toxic systems become normalised and the normal can become toxic, Living Embers uses temporal distortions and surreal occurrences to emphasise each character’s choice as they are drawn towards the inevitable conclusion. The house will burn. Who will burn with it?

There will be a surreal aspect to the game, which will allow us to use metatechniques in a less immersion breaking way to gain insight into the characters’ inner lives, trigger flashbacks etc. Symbolic characters will enter the house at predefined moments to aggravate family members’ concerns and push their buttons – for example an insurance agent questioning the family about how much they value the house and what they are going to miss the most when, not if, the house burns. We will blur the lines between the real and the surreal, which will emphasise how difficult it is to reconcile the different ways the characters perceive the family dynamics.

As the different worlds collide more of the house’s present, past and future is revealed.

By: Laura Wood, Karolina Soltys, Patrik Balint & David Owen (swe & uk)
Duration: 4 hour
Number of players: 5

Premiere at Stockholm Scenario Festival 2016.

Download the scenario here.

Laura Wood has written Here Comes a Candle, a larp about a dystopian society. She also has organised events involving diversity in gaming. Karolina Soltys has written Arsenic and Lies, a freeform murder mystery, and co-written several other games. Both have run a number of larps and freeforms at various indie gaming groups in London. Patrik Balint has written and run the game Changing Friends at Stockholm Scenario Festival and has co-organized Knutpunkt 2006 and the larp “A nice evening with the family” as well as a range of smaller freeform games and larps. David Owen has co-written The Baby Club, a larp about the families of imaginary children. He regularly plays and runs games in various indie gaming groups in London.