Steam & Sorcery ~ How to Play

Live Action Role Play (LARP) is a game of imagination and improvised theatre. Much like a murder mystery, LARPs are acted out in real time by the players. The Steam & Sorcery LARP is free to play; all you need is a smart phone, a pen, a handful of silver and copper coins, imagination, and your wits.  

In the Steam & Sorcery LARP, you are a Player Character (PC) playing the role of a “Smog Runner,” folks from all walks of life, but all familiar with the streets of smog. Some were born to the smog, others fell from grace, and some run the streets to escape the restraints of high society. Each runner has their own story, and to help you choose yours there are certain ARCHETYPES that have certain skill sets. 

Throughout the game there are referees, known as ARBITERS, who are available to settle rules questions and disputed scenarios. In most cases Non-Player Characters (NPCs) will act as referees for their specific scene. NPCs are actors in the game, but they are part of the supporting plot rather than heroes in the adventure. ARBITER STATIONS are clearly marked locations in the gaming space where an Arbiter can be found during gaming hours. Arbiters can assist with rulings, in game item purchases, in game medical attention, leveling up, and a number of other game related needs. 

FIXERS play a similar role to Arbiters but are also characters in the game. The Fixers are important NPCs (pictured below) who provide missions for players and lead the different factions who compete against each other.

BOARDING SESSIONS are scheduled times when Arbiters and Fixers are available to guide new players and give plot updates to all players.

STATS & COINS – Characters in Steam & Sorcery have three main stats: BODY (quarters), MIND (dimes), and SPIRIT (nickels). These stats will vary from from a minimum of one to a maximum of four, and measured in SILVER COINS. Coins are tossed to determine outcomes of player actions, so if a character’s Body score is Four Coins, they get to toss four silver coins to try and gain the number of successes needed for the challenge; heads are successes, tails are fails. Additional COPPER COINS (pennies) may be added to the toss from appropriate Archetype skills, Ancestry bonuses, and equipment bonuses.

CODES & CLUES – Spread throughout the gaming space there are multiple QR codes that provide clue paths. Many of these clues are locked and require a password from a previous clue or challenge to gain access. 

CHALLENGES – During a gaming session there are many challenges that will require a character to use their stats and skills to toss coins for successes (heads). Challenges may come other PCs, but most challenges will be given by NPCs. The challenge might only require or allow one attempt at tossing coins, or it might require a round of multiple coin toss turns to work to a resolution.

CHARACTER SHEETS – Stats and character information are recorded on a foldable Character Sheet.

ANCESTRIES – Players pick one ancestry for their character. Ancestries can add bonuses and some limitations to a character based on their heritage.

ARCHETYPES – Characters start with one to three Archetype classes. These are occupations or specialities that allow a character to use specific skills that may arise in a challenge situation. archetypes are divided into Body, Mind, and Spirit; some archetype require Stat Coin minimums.

BRASS – In game currency (printed on business cards).


Back to the Steam & Sorcery Index

Chicago Steampunk Exposition