Battleship - a Vietnam era larp on board the USS New Jersey
On November 2-5, 2017, join us as the USS New Jersey comes alive once more, in a grand live action role play adventure.
“No event in American history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam War. It was misreported then, and it is misremembered now.” – Richard M. Nixon
Join us November 2-5, 2017 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
On September 2nd 1967 the battleship USS New Jersey stopped at Pearl Harbor before setting sail for her first tour in Vietnam. The ship began its journey through a tempestuous storm to the 17th parallel, where it would engage in the conflict. On the ship, both drafted and willingly enlisted sailors served dutifully. Around those people, a war waged that divided a nation along cultural and philosophical lines. It is 1967.
We are the people.
As a nation, America was born with the dream of independence and an ingrained idealism that still exists to this day. But without context, we do not truly understand what came before us. The defining moments of America’s history are confined by books and documentaries instead of being experienced in our living memories.
Time and time again, we hear about wars and politics—hearing without really listening or understanding. Living reenactments can offer glimpses into the past. But in order to really understand history—to live in it—we need to create a more in-depth narrative.
We need to create a space where we can embrace the emotional tension, the dividing politics, and the moral conflict of a culture that embraces both passion and change. And that is exactly what we do. We create entire worlds for you to live in for short periods of time. We write stories that intertwine your experiences with those of an alternate persona from another place and time.
We design worlds that allow you to experience and understand history through expertly crafted dramatizations. We are the people.
Welcome to the USS New Jersey.
Welcome to Battleship.
November 2-5, 2017
Battleship is a four-day historically inspired larp event, where you join the crew of the USS New Jersey, as she sets sail back into 1967. Surrounded by 275 like-minded people, you will:
- Live, eat and sleep on-board the USS New Jersey, an Iowa class battleship.
- Wear the uniform of a sailor in 1967, and play the part as well.
- Experience drama, excitement and conflict - not as a spectator, but as part of the action yourself.
- Make new friends and create long-lasting bonds.
- Have a transformational experience and gain memories for a lifetime.
- Witness first-hand the cooperation of Imagine Nation Collective and Dziobak Larp Studios, the teams that brought you Dystopia Rising and College of Wizardry.
What is larp?
If you're not familiar with it already, the term "larp" is a shortened form of live action role play. In a larp, the participants dress up in costume and pretend to be their characters. A larp can last for hours or for days, and can have from a couple of players to many thousands. Some larps are about elves and orcs in the forest, while others are about advertising agencies, wizard universities or ... battleships!
If you want to know more about larp, you can check out these short documentaries from two of our other projects (Fairweather Manor and College of Wizardry).
A trip back in time - almost
During Battleship, you will be sent on a journey 50 years into the past; back to 1967, when the USS New Jersey embarked on a trip to join the fighting in Vietnam. However, this is not a historical reenactment, but an interactive drama; we use history as a canvas, but never a straitjacket.
Thus, we have deviated from the historical representations of gender roles (since we want non-men to be able to join the experience as well!) and racial issues (which are not the focus of the larp). We also welcome participants from all walks of life and orientations, and have no wish to recreate conditions for the historically disenfranchised.
A transformational experience
To some, larp is a recreational activity that gives participants a chance to enjoy a fun weekend with their friends. While we respect that motivation for larping, we also know that an immersive larp experience can be a truly transformational experience, and we will do our very best to have you exit the ship with not just fantastic memories, but also with new insights.
As larp designers, we try to stage experiences as well as guide transformations; by pretending to be someone else, you learn a lot about yourself. There is no script to follow and no director to please. This is a truly co-creative event, where you are both actor and audience, and that can be both compelling and challenging. Play is powerful.
Life onboard the USS New Jersey
Your days will start in the morning with squaring away your bunk, transitioning into your uniform and your character role. As you determine your own ability, you will choose to participate in morning PT or not. After eating in the Mess Hall and transitioning into your event persona, the crew of the USS New Jersey will gather for quarters where the Division Chiefs and Division officers will pass along the required tasks of the day and share any announcements from the chain of command.
As your day goes on you will not only engage in day to day activities vital to the upkeep of an active battleship, but you will also engage in multiple tiers of player-driven story as well as the over-arching narrative of a battleship heading to Vietnam. By twisting together interests and focuses developed between you and our writing team, using hidden modern movie technology to simulate 1960s military engagement, creating a massive historically-inspired narrative of events, and using such an incredible location, this dramatization will result in a multiple day living vacation experience unlike anything you have ever seen before.
The person you will be portraying will tie to story points in line with the history of the world at the time, will connect on a personal level, and will help drive an amazing narrative that will launch you into a fully immersive experience.
All Inclusive Adventure
From the moment you arrive on location, we take care of your needs. You will be clothed, fed and given a place to sleep, and our team of veteran larp organizers will guide your journey from participant to character and back again. You will be provided with a character to play, story hooks to draw you into the drama, and guidance along the way. The larp will be documented by a team of highly skilled professionals, and experienced professional photographers will take pictures of you in uniform so that you'll have visual memento to take home with you.
In short, this is an All Inclusive Adventure.
This is an incredibly ambitious larp project, but the team behind it is up to the task. Battleship is a joint effort between Imagine Nation Collective (Dystopia Rising, Utopia Descending) and Dziobak Larp Studios (College of Wizardry, Fairweather Manor, Convention of Thorns).
This is by far the most enthusiastic and grand scale project the teams have planned. An experience this scale comes with significant cost. To help our backers and supporters understand this side of the project we've included the rough budget below. We're working on saving costs where we can, so we can include extras that aren't already listed. We also have some stretch goals prepared.
Battleship Rental: $40,000
Meals: $10,000 (estimate based on per person)
Uniforms: $7,500 (estimate based on per person)
“Office” tech & supplies: $5,000
US & EU Team transport: $6,000
Unexpected costs, last minute things: $5,000
Kickstarter Costs: 9%
Our previous projects have received a wide variety of media attention. Below is a selection of American and international outlets that have done stories about larps we have done in the past.
We want your help. Share the campaign. Support us. Join us.
Nothing like this has ever been done before.
Help us make it a reality, and be a part of larp history.
Risks and challenges
Between our two teams, we have immense amounts of experience in larp design and event management. Both teams run 150+ person larps on a regular basis. Still, there are things that can go wrong, and we approach this task with great humility and dedication.
There's always a chance that something goes wrong, but since it is hard to expect the unexpected, it is impossible to put a finger on what may happen. Whatever it may be, we feel competent to handle it, though.
We hope you will place your trust in us, and join us on this epic adventure!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (29 days)