The Basics


Once the game has started you are to stay in character at all times unless otherwise instructed by a referee or non-playing character (NPC).

The average game lasts approximately 36-48 hours so beginners would be well advised to create a character that will not become too exhausting. Playing a Viking with a hump, a foreign accent and an attitude problem might be fun at first but come 2.00am you’ll be knackered. Try choosing something quite close to you to begin with, nothing too extravagant. Remember, there should be very few things that your character can do that you yourself can’t do.

Don’t play a vicar if you don’t know the first thing about the Bible, or a magician if you can’t do a single trick. For some of the game your conversation will be about your life and occupation so create an alter-ego that enables you to hold your own in the banter of the dinner table. Basically select something you can bluff for a couple of days. If you want to play something outside your own expertise then make certain you do a little research!

Possible characters include: Actor/actress, antiquarian, anthropologist, archaeologist, butler, author, detective, dilettante, doctor, entrepreneur, government official, journalist, lord/lady, lawyer, medium, photographer, politician, priest, private investigator, psychiatrist, scientist, soldier, sportsman, spy, society lady/gent, or anything else you choose to create.

Create a name, date and place of birth, occupation and life history – it need be no more than one side of A4. It should have information about your family and origins, education, occupation, major events in your life (be they mundane or sordid and scandalous) and focus particularly on the past year. It’s worth doing a little research to really get your facts sorted. It is also useful to know a little about the period in which the game is set. (Usually between 1930-1949). Who’s on the throne? Who is the PM? What’s going on in the War at present?

Your character profile should be sent to the game organiser at least one week in advance of the adventure.

Game Mechanics

During the course of the game the referees may require a momentary pause in the game or they may decide that a longer recess is required. To this end they may give one of the following commands.

'Time freeze!' All players are to freeze in their current position, close their eyes, put their fingers in their ears and hum loudly. (Don't worry. You'll hardly ever be asked to 'time freeze' in a public place.)
'Time out!' All the players may come out of character and relax. This is used at the end of the game and occasionally during a game
'Time in!' The game has started / restarted and the players must assume their characters.

Failure to comply with these commands can result in severe HP and SAN loss. So do as you’re told, okay?