When a delightful fantasy realm falls under the control of a tyrannical despot, it’s very important for them to assemble a spin team – people who can twist bad news stories, to make them seem more favourable to the new regime. This is where you and your colleagues come in… your job is to put a positive shine on whatever happens next.
Working as a team, you will construct news headlines in response to the events that arise. But how far can you trust each other? And when it seems as though the current of history is flowing against the despot, where will you end up?
The play experience of Fake News is about teamwork undercut by mistrust; about delivering creativity under pressure; about personal moral compromises and how they can be justified to oneself; and about how to carry on with life in the face of rising horror. It’s a light-hearted game and fun to play, but it takes a look at some serious real-world issues.
Putting players into the roles of spin-doctors, and using fun and silliness to interrogate serious issues, can be surprisingly revealing and liberating of thought: and it may encourage some feelings and insights that can be brought back into outside life.
Download: Fake News
Mo Holkar is a UK larper who is an organizer of The Smoke: London’s International Larp Festival, and an editor at nordiclarp.org. Mo has designed and organized a stack of larps down the years, including On Location (2017, 2019) and a collection of Nordic-influenced chamber larps which can be found at holkar.net. When not larping, Mo is a game designer.