Game #13 John Woolman is Coming
A LARP for 3 or more players.
The game is set in 18th century America, pre Revolution, in a slave-owning Quaker household.
There must be at least one slave, as well as the head of household, and John Woolman. The head of household is White, Male, Quaker, and rich enough to own at least one slave.
Additional players should be additional household members (wife, children, relatives, hired servants) or additional slaves.
In a finalized version there will be character creation questions and background on John Woolman and what he did (for now check wikipedia.)
Prelude: Introduce the time, place, and John Woolman as a character. Talk about 18th century American Quakerism. If everyone is onboard, this step is optional
Act One: Daily Life
Play through an ordinary day in the household, for each character. Figure out what the reality of daily life is like for everyone. John Woolman’s player should frame the scenes, and everyone should cooperate on scenery, etc.
This is a regular day. If you find yourself verging into crazed territory: murder, slave uprising, sales of slaves, etc. rewind the scene and try it again. Part and parcel of this is that, if something happens, it is part of daily life in the household (so if there’s a rape, say, that means that this is part of what daily life is like.)
Act Two: John Woolman is coming
Play through a day in the household after they learn that John Woolman is coming. How, if at all, does this affect daily routine? What do people think is going to happen?
Act Three: Emancipation
Play through the day, during John Woolman’s visit, that the head of household decides to free the slaves and pay them back wages. Play it through the end of the day. How do people react? What are the emotions like? Will the former slaves continue to be part of the household.
Afterword: Decompression. Talk about the game, what it meant to you, what the problems were, how it affected you, whether or not it was bullshit. This step is mandatory.