It's been quite some time since I and my family have played an Imagination Game just with our family members. Usually we play them with either Dana's family or Siani's, but I wanted to make sure that I and my siblings still had it in us to LARP on our own.
We got dressed up, and lugged our weapons to a park not far from where we live. Percy wore the Robin Hood costume I'd made him a while ago, Seph wore his King Arthur coat-vest, and Rosie, Pippin, and I all wore our gowns. Initially, we hadn't planned on playing a game so heavy on combat as it turned out to be.
One of the things I figured out when it comes to playing less complex Imagination Games is that it helps to structure it around another type of game. For example, tag, hide and seek, capture the flag, or king of the hill. This helps provide the initial style of conflict, then the basic storyline is centered around that conflict. It helps to do this when time is limited to a smaller ammount. More complex storylines that aren't based on another game take time to develope, and it may take a while for the interesting part of the story to really get under way and make the game worthwhile.
We chose a cross of hide and seek and capture the flag for the basis of our quick IG. Seph and I, along with one of our younger brothers, played the part of bandits. Percy, Rosie, Pippin, and another of our younger brothers played nobles travelling to the castle (which was the fenced in playground nearby). We laid an ambush, and waited for them to pass by, then attacked!
Unfortunately, we were uncoordinated, and they made it into the castle, closing the portucllis so we could not enter. A siege ensued, until finally Seph called to charge the castle and leap over the walls to take it. Through a prolonged, confusing chain of events, in which arrows were flying back and forth and swords clashing, Percy and his team vacated the castle, and I managed to get the portcullis closed.
At that point, it turned into more of a game of king of the hill and capture the flag. We bandits didn't need the castle, but it helped to have a defensible position. We plotted, trying several times to nab our prize -- which went from Pippin, to the keys Pippin had on her belt -- without losing the high ground. The fight drew out, the archers taking pot shots at each other, and Percy making many attempts to jump the walls. Rosie was quite an adequate bodyguard for Pippin, and I could not get through her to nab Pippin.
That is, not until Pippin made a grave mistake. Instead of staying with her guard, she took off running completely unprotected in the face of an attack in which Percy and Rosie very nearly gained control of the castle. I siezed the oppurtunity, and bolted after her. She noticed only too late. Threatening to kill her staved off her guards as I put my back to the castle wall, and ordered Pippin to remove the keys. All was done, Seph and our other consort providing adequate cover to keep me from being killed for my somewhat reckless action. I tossed the keys over the wall, shoved Pippin towards her teammates, and hopped back over into the castle.
I'll note that all of this I did in my long green dress. Those of you who think one can't do anything in a dress, I have proven you wrong. I not only swordfought, but ran and also climbed in that dress, and it no more impeded me than a tunic.
Seph called to abandon the castle with our prize. At that time, we decided we should probably head home, as we'd been away for some time. Sticky and winded, we fell into two by two formation, and marched home to six or seven celtic war songs that Percy sang out at the head of our little band.
And that was our Sunday afternoon.