In order to participate in Madrigal there are some mundane steps and pieces of information a player needs to know to play.
Madrigal maintains the following resources to disperse information to the players:
Our mailing list:
We have a mailing list for players. It is a yahoo group with the address:
You can search yahoo groups to find the group. Request membership with a short note of who you are and that you want to play. When the group was open we had way too much email spam so now it is a closed group.
Our Facebook group:
From Facebook you can search for the Madrigal LARP group and join up!
Our Pinterest page:
We sometime share images with players to help players visualize costumes or races from our world. You can find it here:
The first thing you will want to do is determine the dates for the events. We have the dates and locations for upcoming events on our web site. The link for the events page is here:
Participating as a player in Madrigal costs $80.
Participating as an NPC in Madrigal is free!
Our events that are located at Camp Woodstock also have a cafeteria. The cafeteria provides meals Saturday morning at 10:00 am, Saturday evening at 6:00 pm, and Sunday morning at 10:00 am. Players are not required to use the cafeteria.
For players, each morning meal costs $6 and the evening meal costs $8 for a total of $20.
For NPCs, each morning meal cost $6 for a total of $12. Madrigal pays for your evening meal so that meal is free.
Registering to Play
Registering for Madrigal is fairly simple. We do our registration through a web service called LARP Portal. Our web site has information about using LARP Portal. You can find it here:
You can also go to LARP Portal directly with this link:
For NPCs, you also register with LARP Portal.
We accept payment before the event through Paypal. You can either pay through LARP Portal, or you can use our payment page.
Arriving at Game
Arrival at the game generally begins at 7 pm. You can arrive as early as Friday at 2:00 pm on site, and players that travel a long way to play sometimes do arrive earlier, but before 7 pm the staff is doing set up, unloading props and bins, and might not have listings of where all the players are staying yet. If you don’t know which cabin you have been assigned to before arriving on site and arrive earlier that 7 pm we’d appreciate be aware that our player housing list might not be readily available.
Check in for players generally starts around 8 pm. Sometimes we will start earlier to try to mitigate the lines, but the people who help out with check in are sometimes delayed. Check in takes place in the tavern. At check in we will be looking to accomplish the following.
- Check to see that your registration and payment are complete. If not, we would accept payment at that time. We do not have the capability to accept credit cards at the door.
- Get you your character card.
- Check your weapons for safety. This is often a spot check, though we do want to look at the weapons of new players.
- Accept your character’s maintenance payment. See below for more information.
- Allow you to use Runeforging or Alchemy to make tagged items. We will check you card for the appropriate skills and accept true element or alchemical component tags to create tagged Runes and Alchemy substances.
“What if my weapons fail safety check?”
If we have a problem with your weapons we will do our best to help you play the game; either by lending you weapons if we have extras, or helping you have a temporary character card so you can participate.
Check in for NPCs is done as you arrive in monster camp.
Maintenance represents your character’s efforts to keep themselves clothed and fed. At the beginning of each event you pay 5 coppers for Maintenance. If you cannot pay you gain the Starving trait and lose, for the weekend, a point off your maximum Void attribute. This reduces both the number of Void points you would be able to spend and reduce the number of times you can refresh your Earth, Fire, and Water attributes.
Starvation accumulates from event to event. Each additional event you go without paying maintenance you lose an additional point of Void. If you begin an event with no points of Void left you have that event to find sustenance or your character will die from starvation.
If you are starving, you can rectify that situation during game by receiving a “Cure Starvation” effect from some game character or source. In this case you will immediate gain lost Void points and your maximum Void will return to normal.
There are game skills that pay maintenance for you each event automatically. Some let you survive off the land, and some let you receive food from a patron. These skills allow you to ignore maintenance costs, although there might be plots that tax these sources and prevent them from reducing some or all of your maintenance costs.
Characters can pay extra for maintenance to gain extra nourishment and maintain a higher and healthier lifestyle. A character who pays for extra maintenance increases their maximum Void for the weekend. This allows you to not only refresh your Earth, Fire, and Water an additional time but you may also use an additional point of Void to pay for skills.
You must pay a total of 2 silvers (20 coppers) to be Well Fed for the weekend. If you have a skill that allows you to ignore maintenance, then this cost is reduced to 15 coppers as a result.
Out of Game Opening
On Friday night all PCs meet in the tavern for Out of Game opening. This meeting gives the staff a chance to make announcements for the weekend and tell the players about any special effects or rules that might be going on during the event. This meeting is mandatory for players. We also gather new players at this meeting for an introductory new player module.
“What if I miss Out of Game Opening?”
If real life events cause you to be late or otherwise prevent you from making this meeting, we ask that you catch the details the best you can from a player who was there. If you are a new player and miss this meeting you might miss the new player module. That might leave a new player somewhat in the dark about where certain places are so you will have to find a friendly player to help you out and answer questions. If you are truly lost about what you are doing feel free to come by Monster Camp and we will help you out!
For NPCs, on Friday night all NPCs meet in monster camp for Out of Game opening. This meeting gives the staff a chance to make announcements for the weekend and tell the NPCs about any special effects that might be going on, so this meeting is mandatory for NPCs. If you miss this meeting, we ask that you catch the details the best you can from a staff person or an NPC who was there.
“What if I only NPC a partial event?”
Some players can only participate for a limited time during an event. These players can still participate and have fun while they are there. If you miss the Out of Game Opening, however, we ask that you make sure a staff person knows you have arrived so they can explain any special announcements we might have made Friday night.
Start of Game
The game starts on Friday night after Out of Game Opening, usually at 10:45 pm. Sometimes, if the staff has heavy set up, we might be delayed and game will start closer to 11:00 pm.
End of Game
The game usually ends early Sunday afternoon when there is an appropriate break in the action. This is usually between 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm, though sometimes we run slightly over.
Players are in game from Friday night until Sunday afternoon when game ends. There are no breaks where players go out of game for all that time. We ask players to stay in game as much as possible during game hours.
Madrigal has official meal times on Saturday at 10:00 am and 6:00 pm, and on Sunday at 10:00 am. These meal times last an hour, and the game action is usually limited to role play. This allows players to visit the cafeteria, or to prepare food or grill safely without, for the most part, creatures attacking them. Meal times are completely in game, and this time is often a good time to role play.
If we are at Camp Woodstock and using the cafeteria meal service then we do warn players that although the players at the cafeteria are completely in game, the area and the camp’s food staff do not maintain atmosphere as well as we’d like and for that we apologize and ask for your understanding.
Because breakfast starts at 10:00 am and ends at 11:00 am, Madrigal tends to start at 11:00 am and run late. There are occasional earlier encounters and modules, but the game has tended, in the past, to have encounters at night that can go late. Some players find that taking a nap during the day helps them participate in the later encounters.
Although Madrigal runs continuously from Friday night through Sunday, there are spells that can protect your Hearth, which is essentially the cabin or tent where you sleep, from 2:00 am until 10:00 so you can sleep safely. Characters who are still out and about after 2:00 am will sometimes still find encounters or characters late into the night, and sometimes Madrigal encounters run later into the evening.
The Madrigal game area often has farmers roaming around wearing wide straw hats. Farmer hats are reserved for staff members and NPCs that are moving from place to place to prepare encounters. Farmers are purposely uninteresting characters and other than perhaps an in game greeting in passing we ask that you ignore them so they can get to where they need to be to keep the game flowing.
Although we ask players to stay in game for the entire weekend, we recognize that sometimes situations pop up that either the staff should know about, or that can be mitigated by the staff so that the event will run more smoothly for a player. If you have some pressing question that really needs to be answered and you recognize that the farmer nearby is also a staff person then that is a good time to, off to the side, deliver an inquiry or some out of game information that the staff might need to know.
Madrigal is a heroic game populated by heroic characters, and players often go to extreme lengths in the game to accomplish a wide variety of heroic deeds. Sometimes, however, the realities of the real world intrude on the event and players cannot or should not participate in the game for out of game reasons. A player might not feel well, or might have pulled or twisted something, or might have succumbed to extreme hot or cold temperatures, or they might have to actually get sleep so they can drive a long distance home at the end of the event.
In Madrigal, characters can contract a special Plague at any time. This plague is a sickness that disables the character. It cannot be cured through any in game means. It is entirely up to you, the player, to determine when your character is suffering from this plague. In game this is a magical curse from some demented demon. Out of game this denotes that you cannot, for out of game reasons, participate in the game at that moment.
If you are sick, or cannot or should not participate in the game you should get some rest and tell people who are trying to interact with you in game that you are Plagued. This phrase indicates that although your character may be eager or even obligated to participate in some game event, they are physically and mentally incapable of doing so. This allows you to get the out of game rest or recovery time you need.
If you try to get someone to help with some task, and they tell you that they are Plagued, then this means that there is some out of game reason they cannot participate at the current time in the game, and that in game you know they are debilitated and unable to adventure, fight, or even interact until the Plague has passed. We request that if you encounter a character who is Plagued that you respect that and don’t try to talk them or guilt them into participating in the game so they can recover.
Character Point Awards
Character points are the currency you use to buy game skills and attributes. As you participate in the game and find ways to help to make Madrigal a better game you will accumulate character points that you can use to improve your character. Over time your character can spend character points to gain more skills and to improve attributes.
Each character starts with 50 character points. You can gain additional character points in the following ways:
- You earn a one-time bonus of 5 character points for submitting a character history. You can earn this bonus even if you submit a history after your first event. Players are always welcome to submit updates to their history, though you can only earn the bonus once.
- You earn 1 character point for each event you attend as a player or an NPC.
- You earn .5 character points for helping us out with a set up and/or clean up task.
- You earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter.
If you NPC a sister game that has a character point exchange with Madrigal then you can also earn character points by attending that game as an NPC.
- You earn 1 character point for when you attend an event at a sister game as an NPC.
- You earn .5 character points for helping out with a set up and/or clean up task when you NPC.
- You earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter after you NPC.
You cannot apply other types of character point rewards you earn at other games to Madrigal; you can only gain characters points at other games for playing as an NPC, helping them with set up or clean up, and submitting a summary letter about your NPC experience to that game.
Madrigal often has the need for players to create or donate props and supplies. The staff maintains a list of props and costuming that we need. This is a great way to earn extra character points. We also make requests for packet donations each event.
Character Point Cap
Madrigal has a character point cap. This is the maximum number of character points a single character can have. The cap allows you to add 15 character points per year to your character from any source, and an additional 5 character points that must be earned through set up and/or clean up at Madrigal events, summary letters for Madrigal events, and Madrigal specific prop and costuming donations.
- History and Paragon awards do not count against this cap, making it possible for a character to reach 80 character points in the first year.
- The cap goes up by 20 each year, with the end of each year being December 31.
- The cap is campaign wide; once it goes up it is increased for all players, old and new.
Players that start the game after the first year are not limited in the amount of character points they can earn each year, so long as their total points to not exceed our total character point cap. Players must still earn at least 5 of those points for each year of the campaign from Madrigal specific tasks involving set up and/or clean up, summary letters, and donations.
Set Up and Clean Up
Madrigal always has lots of set up and clean up to do. We ask for the players to help with this; not only is it a great relief to the staff to have help but it will also get you an extra .5 character points for the event!
The Madrigal staff will also look for players who are willing to take on a permanent set up and clean up task. This usually involves being responsible to set up and clean up some in game area You might be responsible for setting up and cleaning up the Temple of the Woven Faith, or the Gate of Death, or some other recurring area. The advantage to this is that you are really helping us out and we will love you for it, but you have a consistent task every event that you know about and can plan around.
“What if I have an assigned task and I will be late or can’t make the event?”
We ask that you either inform staff ahead of time so we can plan appropriately. If you can also find another PC willing to take you task for the event that would be wonderful.
At the end of each event you are encouraged to submit a summary letter. The preferred method to submit your summary letter is through LARP Portal. We want to hear about your experiences at the game. While LARP Portal is set up with some suggested questions for you to answer, it is ultimately up to you to decide the contents of your summary letter.
Each event you can earn .5 character points for submitting a summary letter within two weeks of the event. We have the time requirement to encourage players to submit a letter while the event is fresh in their mind and so staff has a chance to read them before we discuss the previous event at our meetings. If real life makes it difficult or impossible to get in your summary letter in that time frame you may drop us a line and request an extension.
Because Madrigal has no player cap, it is possible for us to run into the situation where we have far more people interested in participating as players rather than NPCs. While we make every effort to provide entertainment in ways that use NPCs efficiently, there are times when we might appreciate extra NPCs to make a particular encounter memorable or somehow more awesome. We would rather avoid forcing players to NPC some number of events, and we also don’t want a player cap as to avoid stress around registering.
To help with this we use voluntary NPC Shifts. An NPC Shift is a time when a player or group of players swaps sides (so to speak) and for a time participate as NPCs so a fight or encounter can properly entertain more PCs. We try to minimize how often we use NPC Shifts because we know it can break immersion, but we feel this technique is the lesser of several evils when we have a situation where the player to NPC ratio is too low to provide adequate entertainment or too low to realize some encounter or battle.
We have two ways that we get volunteers for an NPC Shift. Both are completely voluntary.
First, if we know some encounter is coming up during event planning that will be heavy on NPCs we will contact players or send out a requests to players and schedule an NPC Shift for players willing to do so. The players know what time to report to monster camp, and any change to the time would be communicated to them by staff, probably approaching them as a “farmer” to tell them about the change in schedule.
Second, there is a special group of characters called the Scarlet Scouts that serve the entirely out of game purpose of gathering PCs and taking them off so they can NPC for us. While this group of mercenary scouts are, in game, hired to gather intel or bring back information for people about specific areas, the group will never bring players to actual adventure. The sole purpose of this group is that players who agree to go on the scouting missions for the Scouts will leave game and take an NPC Shift. This allows staff to come into game and find players who are willing to help us out for a time.
The Scarlet Scouts often wear a red sash, scarf, or tabard. Staff won’t send Scarlet Scouts out to participate in actual plot; it is a mechanism for finding players will to do an NPC shift without breaking game.