Sunday, 6 July 2014

Ruin Raiders July - Cancelled

Hi Folks,

Unfortunately, we've not managed to get the numbers for this event to make it practical to run under the model we'd envisaged. We wouldn't be able to provide the experience we think our players deserve so we've decided to cancel this event.

Billetto will be arranging a full refund of your ticket price back to the card you paid on. If you have any issues with the refund, please contact them in the first instance. But please get in touch if there are any sissies they can't resolve.

We really appreciate your support and commitment for the ideas behind Ruin Raiders and we'll be taking feedback on board and organising another event in the near future that will provide a taste of the game without being so dependent on confirmed numbers.

Please follow our page so we can keep you updated on new developments:

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Character Concept: The Pure

These focussed and zen like individuals are well aware of their nanite infestation and through a program of meditation and focus hope to gain conscious influence over their infestation.

They resist the easy path of allowing their body to adapt to it’s environment and keep their body “Pure” through sheer force of will. Some members of the pure develop enough of a rapport with their nanites that they allow influence or control over some of the long lost energy emission technologies of W’aste.

Although The Pure strive for control of their own bodies, they are not above working with other Raiders. They may value mental and emotional strength. But, they also accept that sometimes brute force can be the best solutions.  

The pure normally embrace a slightly ascetic clothing style and keep their arms bare to show they do not sport the alterations of other raiders.  

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Character Concept: Zoomorph

Original image by
Humans have always appreciated the grace and resourcefulness of the animal kingdom and even on a shattered colony light years from Earth, old earth fauna still holds its mystique.

Zoomorphs become so caught up with the shortcomings of the human form to cope with life in the ruins that their Nanite Infestation starts to incorporate transgenic traits into their physiology. Often starting as enhanced balance or improved senses, some Zoomorphs start to take on distinct animal features and personality traits over time.

Although they may take on a great many bestial affectations, the majority are capable of thinking just as clearly and cunningly as any Raider. Those few that have surrendered their higher faculties to bestial instincts are commonly reffered to as ferals.

Zoomorphs tend to wear loose fitting cotton clothing that doesn’t hinder their movement. They generally avoid being overloaded with armour or loot.  

Monday, 30 June 2014

Character Concept: Dreampunks

 Coping by hiding from the realities of life has been a long (if not proud) human tradition. So it’s not surprising that the subconscious desire for escape was detected by the Nanite Infestations of some Raiders and neural shunts to overwrite sensory data with a more acceptable reality began to form within their nervous system.

Dreampunks now live perpetually in a fantasy version of reality, viewing everything they do through the filter of their false perceptions. Oddly, the perception filters usually mitigate most fears and phobias while emphasising true dangers to life and limb, causing most Dreampunks to act as the heroic lead in their own fantasy.

Dreampunks know their fantasy version of reality is a fake. But, they have such a hard time dealing with the reality of their existence that they will often deny or avoid a confrontation regarding the true nature of reality unless really necessary.

The majority view the world as some sort of fictionalised version of ancient earth, with 1920’s sci-fi serials and Steampunk being common.

Clothing usually reflects the fantasy of the individual Dreampunk and frequently used gear will often gradually assume the form the Raider perceives while maintaining its original function.   

Sunday, 29 June 2014

New Character Concept

I’ve published some info on the first of our character concepts. These are designed to be a nice simple entry into the game and require minimal costuming or props.  

Sheltered will often evolve into one of the other concepts after a few sessions of play.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Guns & Parts

I was looking to get another of the Dissector disc guns for Combat Creatures Attacknids we use in Ruin Raiders as we've been having a lot of reliability issues with the nerf dart style gun and need matched weapons for duels.

It's now cheaper to get a whole new robot than to buy just the weapon and my wife may kill me if I buy another robot :-/

Decisions, decisions....

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Ruin Raiders LARP Playtest July

We've had three successful runs of Ruin Raiders as a stand alone adventure game and each time we've moved a little closer to turning the concept into something that would work for an ongoing monthly LARP.

The setting is a far future post apocalyptic world where small groups of Raiders must work together to scavenge for the materials to maintain their equipment and build up secret sites where they can acquire raw materials as a regular income.

The next event is designed to test the format we envisage for the game and whether it can support the numbers of players we need to make an indoor combat LARP financially viable.

The system is designed around hard skills, so your ability to squeeze through gaps, decipher codes and haggle are all just as important as your ability to shoot straight. Teamwork and strategy are key to maximising your manpower and ensuring you have the right tools to hand when you need them.

For this event we’ll be using the Equipment based class system we used for the stand alone games. But, we have plans to develop this at future play tests. Combat will also be limited to Nerf combat within the ruins for this event. Don’t bring your own weapon, we’ll be providing them.

We’d welcome people coming in what costume you can muster and we have a few accessories that we can lone out. Try for combats and a t-shirt as a minimum and if you’ve got more, then awesome! More info on concepts coming soon.

Team Bookings
The event has space for up to four teams, so if you have 4-6 members we can book you a team slot of your very own. Solo raiders will be sorted into teams on the day.

We want our games to be open to anyone, regardless of financial means so we operate on a Pay What You Can basis. We feel a donation between £5 and £20 is a fair price for the event that we run. Unfortunately, because of the number of no-shows at the last event we will be moving to an Advance Tickets basis.

Unfortunately, it looks unlikely that our venue will have a suitable child licence in time for this event. But we do aim to make these events available to under 18’s in the future.

Facebook event available here:

Friday, 13 June 2014

Injuries In Ruin Raider

There are a lot ways to get hurt in the Ruins. But, we’re of the opinion that stopping you from playing by claiming you are “Dead” just spoils people’s fun. So instead we ask you to pretend that you have been hurt until you manage to get a Panacea to make the injury go away.

Head Wound
You feel dizzy and have to concentrate to think straight.

Chest Wound
Your chest hurts and you are in constant pain. You can't move at faster than a slow walk.

Injured Leg
It hurts to put weight on your injured leg and you walk with a limp.

Injured Arm
You can't carry anything with your injured arm and it hurts to use the hand for anything.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Starting Gear in Ruin Raiders

Every member of a team can choose one piece of equipment that gives them an advantage in the Ruins. Each team can only have one of each starting item. Although, it's possible to trade for items that are almost as good as the starting gear during the game.

The starting Gear you can choose from is:

This heavyweight protective gauntlet protects your hand from damage from dangerous fluids and energy.
A large riot shield to provide portable cover from ranged attacks.
These handy tools make it easier to work out the combination on a lock.
A bow and arrows to allow you to hurt your enemies. You can retrieve arrows..

Shoulder Bag
A large shoulder bag that lets you get more of that useful stuff out of the ruin.
Bring light to the dark and dingy ruins with this battery powered lantern.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Intercon O

I'm starting to lay the groundwork for the next runs of Ruin Raiders as the moment. Nothing firm enough to announce yet. But, know that it's in the works.

Then I come accross this advert on Google+.

Intercon is a really big deal. It's a bit like the larp equivilent of getting published in Nature. Ruin Raiders would be a great fit for it if they were able to give me enough space and enough time.  

Of course, it would mean transporting all my props and crew over there (or getting more props made in boston, which might actually be cheaper) so we are talking thousands of pounds for me to run there. It's stuipid and it's impractical and I should just dismiss it.

But, I really, really want to show of Ruin Raiders there.

I'm going to put this idea away now and calmly say "Not this year Intercon.". But, maybe. Just maybe. I'll see you in 2016.

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

The end of the world is... past?

I was looking for pretty pictures for my Storium game I'm running for a few friends and stumbled across a post featuring 51 great post apocalyptic pictures. I've cherry picked the ones that felt most appropriate to the game for this post. But, you should go take a look at the rest!

Monday, 5 May 2014

Ruin Raiders @ Conpulsion - Call For Feedback

Hi Folks,

I'm looking for some feedback on the Ruin Raiders game at Conpulsion. If you played, helped crew or even if you thought about playing, but didn't. Then, I want to hear from you!

Please post your comments on the blog, or page most convenient to you and I'll get them collated later.

In particular, I'd like to hear your thoughts on any or all the following:
  • Did you have fun and would you play again? Was one run enough? Would you come along if we ran it outside of a convention? Would you be willing to put money towards playing again?
  •  Did you know about the game before you played? Did the info you had on the game match what you actually played? How can I sell the concept better?
  • Did the props and the location add or detract from your enjoyment of the game? Was the space too big or to too small?
  • What did you think of the post game trading and the scoring? Did it add to the fun? Did you feel a need to know what the other teams scores were at during the day?
  • What was the coolest thing that happened on your raid?
Thanks very much in advance for taking the time to help make Ruin Raiders second run even better than the first!

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Conpulsion Day 2 Final Scores

There were some big changes to the final scores in the trading phase yesterday. But, the bigger teams on day two made it a bit harder to get the bonus combo's.

Team Pikachu were the only day two team, so their score is tracked separately from the others. After an encounter outside the ruin that resulted in the unarmed Red Alert team loosing all their cards (I'm not saying what happened. But, I think we can all picture how this scenario played out in a post apocalyptic setting), they traded very wisely. First off, they had the smarts to buy a Panacea to heal their injured team member, making it easier to become Well Fed. Now I'll see if I can remember this correctly, as I didn't note it down and they got a lot of bonus combo's. At the end they were: Well Fed, Armed, Dangerous, Purloiners. Giving them a total score of 74 points up from 29 points worth of loot.

Team Pikachu take the award as the best Two Day Team and have left a pretty awesome record to beat.

On to the single day teams. These are competing against each other and I was hopeful for some big moves.

Red Alert did not make a return, so are out of the running.

The Larpioligist decided not to trade as they had so few cards and such a big team it was unlikely they could do much to increase their score. Their score stood at 9 points.

This made You're a Quizard, Harry! the clear winners with a fine score of 31 from a raid total of 29.

Congratulations to all my players, you were all awesome! I hope you were grinning as much as I was as you went through the ruins. Don't forget to follow us on Facebook or Google+ for more info and pictures.

Enjoy your scran and don't let the grimels bite! 

Conpulsion Day 2 Raid Scores

Day two was incredibly busy for Ruin Raiders and my lofty plans for letting the day one teams make a second run didn't go quite to plan. The later slots were booked tight with new teams and by the time The Skywaymen and Team Rocket tried to get a second run I was fully booked.

The addition of a second drone on this run proved a serious obstacle for most teams, and there was an awful lot of very tactical play from all the teams as they dealt with two threats with only a single weapon. The scores were lower on day two due to the increased difficulty.

Team Pikachu booked early for their return slot and brought along an extra member to help out on Day 2. They took advantage of the Glove that they made on day one to go in with an extra piece of Gear. Although they were struggling with one injured player, they bravely combated the drones and walked out the room with a very respectable 29 points.

The first single day team  was Red Alert. One of the few teams that went into the ruins unarmed, they started off a little tentative. But, managed a stronger second half of the run, to come out with a respectable 11 points.

Winning the prize for longest team name, You're a Quizard, Harry! was made up of various Conpulsion staff that were able to sneak away from their assigned jobs. They made an expert run and came out with a massive 29 points. This was the highest scoring raid of the day.
The final team of the day were the ill fated Larpiologists, This massive team of six made great inroads early on and were on the way to an excellent score. Unfortunately, after sneaking past the drones on the second level, they found themselves cut off from the exit as the counter ran down. Only one team member made it back to the transit tube, leaving them with only 9 points worth of loot. Certainly the most tragic end to any of the runs for the day.

Post trading results coming soon.

Don't forget to follow us on Facebook or Google+ for more info and pictures.

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Post Trading Conpulsion Day One Results

The trading phase resulted in some big shake ups to the scores, although the results were interspersed over the day.

Team Pikachu were leaving early, so some quick and canny trading on their part allowed them to gain Gauntleted bonus, giving them a final score of 17 points. Well done guys, I can’t wait to have you play again and I hope you enjoyed your day.

The Skywaymen came back second and had made some risky trades that relied on getting a Metal Tube to become both Armed and Dangerous. Unfortunately, no-one actually managed to loot a metal pipe on the Saturday runs, so they were out of luck. They managed to get Gauntleted, but the loot converted to ammo cost them 4 points and left them at a lofty 39 points.

Team Rocket handed over cards last, at almost 6pm. They had traded very carefully and managed to get both the Protected and Gauntleted bonuses as well as making some Scran. This allowed them to squeak into the lead with a massive 40 points.

Well done everyone and it just goes to show that the game is far from over when you leave the ruin. A lot can change in the trading phase!

I know at least two teams are hoping to make it back tomorrow, so we’ll see how they manage to leverage their day one successes on the second run.

Conpulsion Saturday Raiding Scores

We had a successful first run of Ruin Raiders in the Saturday morning slot at Conpulsion.

First team, The Skywaymen had a real advantage as they were two of the players that did the playtest. The team came out of the ruin with a massive 30 points worth of loot.

The second team, Team Rocket were much more careful and methodical and had one member not been injured by a drone, they could have ended as strong as they started. They left the room with 19 points.

The final team of the day was a father and son duo called Team Pikachu. Although they only left with seven points worth of loot, they gained some very rare items.

I had an awesome time and can't wait for our second run tomorrow.

Final Scores (after item trading coming soon).

Friday, 25 April 2014

T -11 Hours And Counting...

It's the night before Ruin Raiders gets its first proper outing to the public. I'm surprisingly calm and feeling very well prepared. All the props are either already at the venue or arriving in the Skian Mhor van tomorrow.

There's a strange sort of serenity that comes with not being able to fiddle with your packed gear. I kind of like it.

I've got a couple of admin jobs that I can do tonight to save myself some time in the morning. So I'm going to push on with them. Oh, that and test that I can post to social media.

Night, night. Don't let the Grimels bite.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Under 18's Welcome!

I'm please to announce that Ruin Raiders will be open to children as well as adults. Under 14's must be escorted by a responsible adult and be capable of following the safety briefing (no running, don't destroy my robots).

There will not be a separate rankings table for teams with younger members as small size will be a big advantage on some challenges.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Image from Brosa on DeviantArt:

Sunday, 9 March 2014

3D Printed Tokens

In a surprise "Postage international is actually really quick" shocker, my 3d printed tokens have arrived, and already been sent to Skian Mhor for the silicon molds to be made.

I've learned a lot about quick and dirty 3D printing while I've been making these. Enough that I'm considering working on a few more 3D projects for LARPS in the future.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Getting all High Tech

I've been working on some little tags that will be attached to useful items you can find in the ruins. Sean from Skian Mhor and I have some cunning ideas about them. But for now, I thought I'd just point out how useful The Noun Project has been in creating them.

I've used several icons as inspiration, the links to the original images can be found below.

The blanks of the tokens will be 3d printed at Shapeways and Sean will then create silicon moulds of the tokens so we can cast our own in resin.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

The Look & Feel - Before The Fall

The world that Ruin Raiders is set in is not the near future grungy post apocalypse of walking dead or Mad Max. It takes place after humanity has reached for the stars and obtained it's utopia. Inspirations for before the fall would be Star Trek: Next Generation, Ian Banks' Culture Novels and the pre crash parts of After Earth.

This was a post scarcity society where anything you could ever want was available just for the asking. They had something similar to Star Trek replicators where any item could be 3D printed on demand if you had enough raw material. Most items are expected to be used a few times and then broken down into the raw materials again. Because of this, items are hardly ever made from natural materials like wood or leather, advanced plastics, vinyl, sythetic cloth and metals are used instead.

Inspiration From Before The Fall

Monday, 6 January 2014

Updates and Promo Text

I've been doing a little bit of updating of info and items on the  Ruin Raiders Wiki. It's enough to give a little more flavour of the setting. But, still a lot more work to be done.

I've also revised the game pitch on the front page to include the post game trading element. What do people think? Does it make you want to try it?

Pitch Text:

Ruin Raiders is an action adventure game that plunges you into a post apocalyptic future world where teams of friends compete to scavenge for the food and materials your group need to prosper.

Start by gearing up with an essential piece of kit that will give you an edge as you explore our living ruin environment. Then overcome physical and mental challenges to gain access to different areas of the ruin while solving puzzles and tests that will gain access to the most valuable loot items.

Teamwork and strategy are key in maximising your manpower and ensuring you have the right tools to hand when you need them.

Don’t forget… The clock is ticking and only the items you leave with can count towards your score!

Once you make it out of the Ruins you can trade your loot (represented by Stuff and Gear cards) with other Raider Bands at the convention to get Scran and parts to make Gear that give you an edge over other Bands and boost your score.

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

The drones are coming!

One of the things that I'd determined early on about the Ruin Raiders setting was the fact that there were various androids and drones inhabiting the various ruins. These electronic obstacles are a shadow of their former selves, mostly caught in minor subroutines of their original complex artificial personalities.

I'd originally envisaged building a "flying" drone that we could dangle from the end of a pole and target the player with Stryfe Nerf guns triggered from the pole. I still think it's a viable plan, and one I'll work on for future foes I think.

The problem was that it's another R&D project in a game full of R&D projects. Any risk that I could eliminate by using tried and true technology has to be considered.

So when I ran across a review for the Combat Creatures Attacknid I knew that I had to look into it a bit further. My main concern was that they would be too fragile, and looking at a lot of the other attack capable toy reviews, it seems to be a common problem. Not with the Attacknid, though. It seems to be very durable and there were no real specific complaints about them.

The looked good. And they were half price in the January sales.

I bought two. One is the new Stryder with the Snypa barrel fed dart gun and the other is the older Attacknid Drone armed with the Dissector disc blaster. Of the two it's clear that the Stryder is the newer model, it has a clearer system to show how damaged it is in battle mode and has added sound effects, it also has many more channels on the remote. But, I doubt that will be an issue for me. If you can, go for the Stryder or Doom Razor, they are a a little better.

Initial testing in the flat was good. They are damned creepy when they are moving about and if you are not controlling one you very quickly start to ascribe them a malevolent intelligence. They are a little tricky to control, but a little practice will go a long way.

Phase two was some a drunken three way battle between the Attacknids in Battle Mode and who-ever managed to get their hands one the Nerf Gun. You've got to be a pretty good shot to hit the very small target, but it proved do-able if you were careful. The Attacknids really creeped people out and the suggestion was made that we warn people about a potential arachnid style threat as it may be a bit much for arachnophobes. The batteries lasted a good while as well, which I was pretty pleased about.

They are prone to weapon jams if you don't know how to use them. But, they became less frequent as people got used to the controllers.

I think they will be a perfect fit for the Nerf based combat that I'll be using for Ruin Raiders. But, I wouldn't want to risk them getting battered with standard LARP weapons. I think one of the biggest issues might be the weapon and head just getting knocked clean off as there's only friction holding them in their sockets.

I'll let you know how they get on in testing and may reveal a few picks of another little plan involving the Attacknids when it's underway.