The Darkest Hour
The Darkest Hour is an intense, collaborative storytelling larp that employs a rules-light system with minimal calls or mechanics. Over the course of several successive events, staff and players alike work to tell a tale of dramatic horror that is largely unscripted and focuses on the struggle of surviving in the strange, untamed forests of the Colonies.
Creating a Character
First, write a character concept and a history to help ground your character within the world and to establish how you wish to roleplay them. Every character starts with 1 rank in a profession and 2 levels to spend in whichever classes you choose.
Classes enable you to gain skills or perform feats that might not be otherwise feasible to perform safely, including things like sharpshooting, knocking an opponent out, or spell-casting.
The 3 available classes are:
After 6 full days of playing your character, you may take 1 additional level in a class your character already has, or 1 level in another class entirely. Whenever you gain a class level, you may select a new skill from within that class. You also gain one point of resolve, which can be spent working at stations or performing class abilities. You may only gain 4 extra levels per character.
You resolve is fully restored through resting which is classified by thirty minutes of continuous stress free activity that your character would find relaxing.
Professions [insert short description here.]
Additionally, during the between-game period, you gain 1 rank in the profession to which you dedicated the most action points. You may have up to 10 ranks split among no more than 3 different professions.
Your character suffers a wound whenever they are struck on a limb or torso by a fellow performer; wounds must be roleplayed appropriately. For example, If you are blinded by someone, grit your teeth and squeeze your eyes shut until they are little more than slits and hindering your vision. Likewise, if someone strikes your knee, start limping. Get creative, and really reward a fellow performer for landing a solid blow. There are several types of wounds, including:
- Piercing—arrows, spears, thrusts from pointed weapons
- Lacerating—cutting attacks
- Contusions—blunt attacks
To the best of your ability, try to track where and what kind of wounds you have sustained during combat so that a healer can apply the correct treatment.
Wounded characters actively bleed out and die within 10 minutes unless they are able to get help, no matter what kind of wound they have sustained.
If your character suffers a second torso wound, you are rendered incapacitated. While in this state, you must roleplay being unconscious. At this time you are at the mercy of your fellow cast members. If they deal a lethal strike or wound you again, your character will die.
The Darkest Hour is a rules-light system, but safety is a primary concern. When in combat, never strike someone else’s face, neck, or groin.
In combat, attacks are felt-blow, not lightest-touch. This means that if your target did not feel the blow or it was not a clear strike; such as a glancing blow powered by the wrist alone- they may simply shrug it off. An audible 'slap' from a latex weapon will often make it clear when the strike would be effective. On the other hand, this is where combat roleplay really shines. Reward your fellow cast members for a powerful and well-acted strike; start gasping for breath, howl in pain, or begin limping. The purpose of this is to create a dramatic and interesting scene for every party to enjoy. Keep in mind that defensive wounds don't often result in the arm or leg becoming useless but rather, a diminished capacity.
Generally speaking, any character may be physically grabbed, but only by staff members, and only on the shoulders, arms, or wrists.
If you want a more intense experience, you may apply to wear a white armband. This signals to the cast members around you that you are eligible for various forms of heightened (nonsexual) physical roleplay, such as being grappled, slapped, dragged, or bound. This applies both in and out of combat situations. All persons who want to wear a white armband must first be vetted by approved staff members.
Weapons & Armor
[insert stuff about weapons here]
You can ignore wounds to regions of your body that are covered with armor*. Different types of armor include:
- Light coverage—padded, leather, chain, and scale armor. This allows you to soak blunt and cutting attacks from light weapons.
- Heavy coverage—plate and some scale. This allows you to soak blunt and cutting attacks from any weapon, as well as thrusting attacks from light weapons.
An individual piece of armor breaks and is considered useless once it soaks wounds, however this only takes effect once the scene ends. It must be repaired in order to be useful again.
* an exception to the rule: If a fellow cast member strikes a weak spot in your armor, reward them! Have your arm go dead or take the wound. Be realistic and logical, with each wound you receive contributing to the story.
Shields allow you to block attacks from melee weapons and arrows. They do not count as armor.