This is live role-playing: mystery, fascinating characters, intense adventure, intrigue, tangible magic, and heart-pounding action. It's a field day for the imagination, but at the same time it's very, very real.
The central idea is role-playing, where you get to take on the role of someone else. It's not just anyone, but someone you create. It's been said that live role-playing is a cross between tabletop role-playing games and improvisational acting.
This means you act as your character would. If you create a character that loves to fight, you'll probably take every opportunity to fight. If you create a character that loves to play practical jokes, you'll probably be looking for suckers! But beware of what sort of character you create: you live as they would for the length of the event.
In some ways, it's like being in a play where most of the actors don't have scripts, and the few that do have scripts know only a few lines. Because of this, people have free will. The characters that have 'no script' are the players, people who pay to come to the game (a.k.a. player characters, or PCs). The people who know 'only a few lines' are the non-player characters (NPCs) played by the games staff. The NPCs are under the guidance of the people who run the events.
If this is all new to you, you may still be wondering how it all works. While players don't have a script, they do have a defined character to guide them in their actions. They also have certain skills and abilities, which are governed by the rules. For instance, it doesn't matter that Sue Smith, the player, is not talented with swords. As long as she can swing a foam weapon, her character can become as skilled as Conan. All the skills are quantified into rules that represent the character's improving abilities.
Who will I be? What can I do?
One of the most interesting parts of live role-playing is creating your character. Many possibilities lay before you: what will your character be like? What do you want to be doing? Who will you be?
There are many different approaches to creating a character. Some people like to start with an exemplary character from fiction or film, some guiding sense of personality. Some use characters from fantasy, while others take inspiration from a modern character and adapt it into the medieval renaissance fantasy world of Legends. If you start this way, you can choose how you want your character to be similar to and different than the inspirational character.
Legends discourages players from taking character names directly from outside sources. For example, it would be jarring to meet a wizard named Gandalf or Elminster, or a barbarian named Conan or Kull at Legends. It should be realized that many who come to play and staff at Legends will be as well read and as knowledgeable regarding cult television and movies as you yourself may be.
On the other hand, some people prefer to start with a broad image of what they want to be; will you be a warrior, thief or wizard? Would you like to try being a healer, a trader, a sage or a treasure hunter? From these broad images, players can then paint in the details that make their characters unique.
Keep in mind that you will be spending your weekend in the skin of this new person, acting, reacting, walking, running, fighting, eating, etc., etc. all as this person.
Some players prefer to create just the general picture of their character, and add some details after they have played the game once or twice; learning how to integrate themselves more fully into the game world as they go. For this reason, Legends permits players to do as complete a rebuild as they like with the character they are playing at any time up until but not including their fourth event of playing the character. This can include the character's race, history, name, and the skills and spells you've chosen.
Building your character
Once you've got a picture of what your characters personality is going to be like, you can move on to choosing skills and/or spells.
Start by downloading and reading the Player's Guide and Create your account for the character database.
Players "buy" their skills and spells with character points (CPs) and work points (WP). Each skill and spell has a CP and WP cost associated with it. Welcome to the game! A base of 100 CP's also are provided within every new character created. The Aknorian race starts with 250 CP's. You can also start with 10 additional CP's by submitting a character history: a description of your character's past life and their interests, goals, passions, etc. Legends strongly encourages every player to write a history, whether it's turned in before you start playing or sometime after that (you still earn the point). These histories can help us write plots that are exciting and engaging for you.
Once your character is created, you can register in the character database system to attend events. More CP's are rewarded by attending events and WP's are rewarded by doing work for the game. It takes a lot of work to run events, but they are worth it. To attend full weekend events as a player cost $60 and one day/feast events vary, but generally cost $20. New players receive a $20 discount at their first full weekend event.
Quick link to the Player's Guide: Player's Guide
Quick link to request character database accounts: Create your account
Lastly, but of high importance, is what you will your character look like. What will he or she wear? This is an area that enhances both your own experience and the experience of others. With a little effort, anyone can make a decent costume. Take a few minutes to think of what you would like your character to be wearing. Then think of what you can use to create this look without spending hundreds of dollars. Note: some clothing is just not acceptable at Legends. Obvious examples include clothes with modem names or writing on them (especially bands or sports teams), baseball caps, blue jeans, etc. -And sneakers in any color but all black look really silly.
Here is an article discussing costuming options.