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Legion: Siberian Story

The Czech larp Legion has been around for some time now and quite a few people from both the republics have already played it – but this time it was organized for international guests. Yes, there is the second big larp that got organized for English-speaking larpers.

Legion is inspired by almost century-old events which we actually don’t hear much about in the Czech Republic. It might be because the time when our legionnaires controlled the Trans-Siberian Railway is not very well documented, or possibly because the general public still feels a certain stigma connected with this topic, that was generated first in the time of the Nazi occupation and then continued by the Communist regime.

The weather forecast for the January weekend the game was scheduled for predicted minus fifteen degrees Celsius and snow. One would expect it to be awful, but on the other hand, Siberia was no rose garden. Moreover, many of the participants were from Scandinavia and so it was expected they would be all right if they did not underestimate preparations, warm equipment, and provided that twenty-five kilometres in two days were not too much for them.

It was indeed cold, but I cannot say whether it really got to -15. The whole game took place outside, in the snowy scenery, and there were almost ten centimetres of fresh snow during the in-game night, which definitely added to the atmosphere. More snow and more cold = more Siberia.

During the game I did not only shoot, but I also repaired jammed rifles, and so I marched with our legionnaires even after dark when it was impossible to take any pictures. But it did help me get more of the atmosphere.

There were over fifty international players at the game – I knew some from Knudepunkt or from shooting at Fairweather Manor, so during the first night before the game, I could talk to people I haven’t seen for almost a year, and at the afterparty I had a chance to have an off-game chat with people I met for the first time.

The reviews of the game are very enthusiastic indeed and it seems we will need to start organizing more games for international larpers and that there might be need for another run of international Legion. And what’s more: from what I know, the Legion made such an impact, that people are currently working on articles for the Larp Zeit, Nordiclarp, and Larp World Magazine. So it seems that after Hell on Wheels we have another international hit.

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