A Live Action Role Play game by Seedling Productions
@Root 'n' Branch Acres, Solihull, UK
1. The Past and Present
2. Playing the Game
4. Game Call and Hand Signs
5. Character Races
1) The Past and Present
Whatever you hold dear, let the songs of Carum guide you. Follow the chorus or sing alone; the time to choose is near and each must grasp their destiny...
THE 1st AGE
As the first age of Carum draws to a close the world has changed much. First the SILENT WALKERS were born into the World, many within the eastern land of THE DRUMBLE followed by, at least a thousand years later, the children of Carum, the METONYMY. Both Humanoid Races have had to learn to survive and interact with the world around them. Their meetings with the SLUMBERVOLK and other strange beings, alongside the animals, have taught them a lot in the ways of crafting, fighting and magic's as well as much more.
Of course they have had to lend their ears to The FACILIES on more than one occasion as these elusive figures make their appearance in times of celebration or need. Both revered and feared they purpose and power is unknown.
One thing that is still unlearnt is that which drives the strange creatures The INCARNU and The AVATARS, who choose to appear not only in dreams but also occasionally in the very world of Carum. Is their power drawn from actions or worship? What are their motives?
THE 2nd AGE
Now three thousand years on the world of Carum has developed exponentially. The landscape has changed and with it the people. The presence of the Silent Walkers has dwindled; the Metonymy have spread to all corners. The Slumbervolk, now locked out of their home must either find a way back to the Underworld or enter a new life above ground. The once animalistic race of the Cats have entered the world of Men, but will they integrate with the other races or will they use their natural skills to hinder others? What of the Rats, their presence brings with it the question of what other races will come to light in this New Age of uncertainty?
The land itself has changed much during this time. Mountains now appear where there were once hills, deserts in spaces previously inhabited by forests. Large trees and rivers have populated the land and with it many new creatures and vegetation yet to be discovered by the Races.
Society has grown with it more structures greater religions and the practices of alchemy and sciences. With all this comes further politics and the need to preserve the world from corruption.
Can the Silent Walkers, the Metonymy and Slumbervolk find their place in this new world or is it now the time of the Cats, Rats and other races of the 2nd Age?
2) Playing the Game
Carum Live Roleplay began as a primitive fantasy LARP and now, after progressing to it‘s 2nd Age, it has become a multi-cultural high fantasy game with new science and technologies being developed. As products of the first born races, the characters shape the future of the world, and the cultures within it. For all towns and citadels that have now been built, rich culture can still be found in the mountains and forests within groups of all races. Regardless of how advanced the world is becoming Carum is still enlivened by strange magics, powerful dreams and the unpredictable ways of the Incarnu and Avatars.
The game is run on woodland site complete with follies, buildings and amazing town and village settings. The world of Carum contains animals to be hunted, and forgeable items to be found which can all be physically found on site. Most found items will have a ribbon Token attached to them. Anything which has a Token is “special” in some way, and many living things have Tokens that are associated with them. One example is that a tree might have 1000 leaves, but only one of them will have a Token, or none at all.
The best way to play the game is with strong actions, and strong opinions. The players are the most important characters of all – your plans and needs generate interaction for others, and the more that characters work with or against each other, the better the game will be. Your choices at each event will shape the format of the next. There are also characters played by the crew, each with a written brief and the same freedoms as the players. These NPC's are often recurring characters, so anyone you meet is worth interacting with.
Your character can acquire a range of different skills whilst playing. Of particular note are the two magics, Elemental and Ethereal. The first deals with the physical world, while the latter is used to heal the body and manipulate the mind. There are skills which can assist you in hunting and foraging, and/or allow you to combine these components into potions and crafted goods. Alternately you can find skills which will increase your aptitude in combat, or help you to enter places which others cannot.
Finding skills and items is not the only way to get them. You can create skills and items from scratch. A structured framework is used to develop new skills and items; these are implemented into the game as a reflection of the ongoing efforts of the characters who inhabit the world.
One aspect of the game that should be explored is the capacity for players to create culture, and transmit it to other players. This is why a strong opinion can be so powerful in Carum – it can be the foundation of a way of life. Work together to help create and build culture or, alternatively, you could develop your own. As you develop skills and items, it is likely that you will specialize in particular areas. Embrace this process – the nature of learning in Carum means that you will build up a body of knowledge within your culture, and as it evolves, the absence of some skills and technologies can be as pertinent and distinctive as the ones you have.
Religion should not be underestimated as a tool for influencing the characters around you. Religious beliefs and lively ceremonies will draw people to your cause. The more effort you make, and the more people you involve, the greater the rewards will be.
Our aim is to provide a framework that will validate your efforts, while allowing your role-play to be as free as possible. We weave the story which binds you together, but it is the combined interactions of every character that create the emergent story of Carum.
3) The Rules of the Game
Your Constitution statistic gives you your Constitution points (CP). CP is used as BOTH your health and magic points. Carum uses a GLOBAL health system, regardless of where you are hit you loose CP equal to the damage received. You may receive damage from weapons, spells or potions. All damage is ONE unless otherwise specified.
Health and Healing
When you reach ZERO CP, you fall unconscious and will dies within 2 MINUTES unless healed. You can choose to yield or fall unconscious before you reach zero. You CP cannot be healed above your Constitution Statistic, although magical and skill improvements are possible. You do not recover CP over night.
Armour and Shields
Armour is TOPICAL - each piece provides ONE point of protection from weapons IF the phys-rep is hit. Pieces of armour can be any size (whether it‘s a glove or a chest plate) and must be repaired individually. Better armour can be found in game.
All weapon damage is deflected by shields, including any weapon calls. Arrows ignore armour. Spells ignore BOTH armour and shields.
When you CAST an Elemental or Ethereal spell the spell will specify the amount of CP you loose. Elemental spells are RANGED and require Spell Symbols; you must note these down when they are learnt. Ethereal spells are TOUCH spells and the caster is able to ‘power up‘ these spells up to one minute before use.
Gaining either the Elemental or Ethereal Apprentice skill gives you access to the MANA POOL. Your Mana Pool starts at 5 and at the end of each event, after gaining one of these skills, you will gain ONE MP (Mana Point). Mana acts as a buffer to your CP when casting spells and is used up before you begin to loose CP. Your MP is recharged over night.
Important items (like potions, components and improved armour) will have a token, which will give some details about the item. Token items can be traded, given or stolen. Tokens only count if it‘s attached to a phys-rep. If you steal an item let a member of the ref team know.
Skills, Spells and Recipes
Players require a notebook, in which their characters details are written and they must records all learnt skills, spells and recipes. Characters can learn ANY skills, spells and recipes, but cannot USE that knowledge unless the corresponding statistic is equal to or higher than required. Once learnt Skills, spells and recipes must be copied exactly into the students book. Therefore all words, symbols and layout must be the same. Sometimes referees will issue stickers to use instead.
To teach a skill, spell or recipe the character must have already learnt it and must demonstrate this knowledge to their student and see their student demonstrate it. This MUST be represented by 10 minutes of IC (in-character) roleplay.
You can take part in any number of religious ceremonies each day, but can receive a BLESSING from only one.
You start each day with a Blood Token for every 5 CONSTITUTION you have. This represents some of the blood inside your body, blood can be used for various things within Carum. You may cut yourself for 1 CP damage for each blood token you wish to use. Blood can be looted from dead bodies.
4) In Game Calls and Hand Signs
This is an overview of the most common calls and hand signs used in the Carum, calls are specific words which may be shouted and hand signs are symbols which may be used in game. If in doubt, you should fall over or ask the person who shouted it what the effects are. Some effects like the ‘Stumble‘ spell are instantaneous, while others, like ‘Sleep‘ will last as long as the caster specifies.
Time In/Time Out:
These calls dictate the beginning and end of the Game. During Time In you must stay in character as this is the time you will get to interact with the plot. After Time Out the game has finished.
This is a safety call. It immediately stops play to ensure that no-one is badly injured.
This is an official pause within the game, and states that play has temporarily been suspended. Stay still, close your eyes, pretend it isn't happening.
This call temporarily stops those nearyby, you must stop what your doing, but are aware of what is happening. You may keep your eyes open, but you can do nothing.
Reduce your CP by 1, or the by the number called afterwards (eg. "Damage 3").
If this is called against you, after apprpiate roleplay, you are winded for 10 seconds but do not fall over or take CP damage from this blow.
All nearby characters, within earshot, are affected by the call that follows (eg. "Mass Damage 2"). Everyone will receive the effect, including the caster's allies and enemies, but the caster will not be affected.
Out of Character/ Referee
Someone with their fist closed and in the air is OC (out of character) or Refereeing. This means they are not part of the game and should be ignored.
For example: A crew member standing up after their character is killed or they are a Referee, who are OC but are available to answer IC (in character)
questions or rules queries.
This is an IC hand sign. There are skills within the game that allow someone to go invisible. If you see someone with a flat palm in the air they cannot be
seen by your character. So imagine you can‘t see them. For example a stealthy character who has used the Merge skill and is therefore invisible until they
6) Character Races
One of the first things you will choose when creating a character is their race. Carum currently features three playable races. These races each have their own histories and cultures which have been embellished and cultivated by both players and crew throughout the years. This process isn‘t finished, as there is still room for the history of the People of Carum to flourish, each character brings with them their own perspectives and in turn enrich the lore helping the world of Carum continue to grow.
The Silent Walker’s consider themselves to be the first sentient and intelligent beings born into the world of Carum. During the beginning of the 1st Age, the majority of Silent Walkers arose within the East of the world in a land now named THE DRUMBLE. As there was nothing before them they had no basis to lead their lives. Upon awakening, each saw something new, leading them to new discussion which turned into new belief’s and customs.
During this time they met the elusive FACILIES. Who are a small group of people, different in aim and appearance yet somehow connected, who have perhaps been in the world longer than the Silent walkers. The Facilies guided them as they learnt and grew, helping as they explored the world of Carum.
Over time their members grew until, after 200 hundred years, the awakenings stopped. The Silent Walkers soon realised that they lacked the ability to reproduce, something they had observed other animals do. This lead to the formation of the ideology of the Silent walkers, which states that all nature must be in balance. They believed that due to their long lives they were made onto the world not to reproduce and populate, but instead to observe and make sure what is done must never be forgotten.
Their first encounter with another race was 400 years after the initial Awakening. When the underground dwelling SLUMBERVOLK accidentally, broke through the crust of the world and into The Drumble. These industrious people represented every custom opposed to the ideals of the Silent Walkers. Their attempt to teach Slumbervolk of the importance of preserving nature fell on deaf ears. This lead to conflict and then to war. Ending only when both races were locked out of the Drumble.
War and the loss of their homeland changed the Silent Walker who were once so sure of their path in the World. In this time of need they, once again, encountered the FACILIES. Wise and powerful the Facilies guided the Silent Walkers back to their path as the preservers of nature and the watchers of time.
As the 2nd Age comes into place the numbers of Silent Walkers have declined, most still live a nomadic life following the path of nature, yet a few have settled in Townships with other races. Silent Walkers tend to dress very primal, with practical clothing of wool, leather and furs. Their abodes are generally tented allowing them to roam and explore the world, only approaching other races to impart wisdom and stories of days gone by. Silent walkers tend to reject the use of metal, preferring instead to use naturally occurring materials for their weapons and armour such as bone, leather and stone. Since leaving the Drumble the Silent Walkers have lead very individualistic lives, as they have generally have no purpose for families, only coming together in times of need.
Born into the world halfway through the 1st Age, the Metonymy were once a race very similar to the Silent Walker’s. From the beginning their population grew rapidly, with them quickly spreading across The Drumble and forming large tribal family groups such as THE AMATU and THE SAMMOUT. Alas due to their naivety, their lives were often short. The Metonymy soon encountered the Silent Walkers, starting with just a small group sighting, within a few years the majority had noticed their presence in the world. Idolising them as pillars of knowledge and wisdom many Metonymy took their advice and sought their leadership. They learnt a lot about the world and its inhabitants during this time, including knowledge of the Underground dwelling Slumbervolk.
Swayed by the negative views of the Silent Walkers, the two races banded together, along with Facilie SINCT’ (Sinct-AH), against the Slumbervolk. War soon broke out between the two groups. Consequently, the War coupled with the their increasingly large population, took a terrible toll on the Metonymy. As famine spread they desperately attempted to pull themselves out of this conflict.
Sinct’ became their saviour helping them leave the war and, for those who left, start a new life outside of The Drumble. Under her guidance, for a few hundred years, there was thriving peace. The lives of the Metonymy became extended, their population stabilised. They formed diverse tribes who lived primitive and wild lives.
However if left to stagnate, society will crumble. The Metonymy inevitably became unsettled. Their views split, half believed life surviving with nature was pure, whilst others saw it as limiting their true potential. As angst travelled through them Sinct’ sat contented with her newly found power, losing the strong connection with her people. The two opposing groups joined forces, realising that their separate paths could only be walked without Sinct’s influence. They left. Sinct’ so blinded by power did not notice their disappearance until it was too late. Giving them enough time to begin populating all corners of the world.
In the 2nd Age this divide is still prominent in Metonymy culture. Some still follow the ways of Sinct’ living simple lives of tribal solidarity, rarely interacting with the outside world. Those who denounced Sinct’s ways have built towns developing a high society with strong roots in the arts. Freely mingling with all races believing inter-connectivity is the key to them continuing to flourish. Within both sides there is a close link to the aesthetics of the world.
Rituals and ceremonies, whether religious or not, are a integral part of Metonymy life. They rejoice in teaching others of their culture especially during special occasions. Even those who follow ways of Sinct’, view these special gatherings as a time to welcome outsiders with open arms. The Metonymy can easily lend their hand to all paths, gaining any skills they believe are necessary. Tending to dress different depending on their view on Sinct’s teachings.
During the 1st Age Cats acted in a very primal way. Their only focus was on hunting, sleeping and survival. At the beginning of the 2nd Age MEN began to populate, after coming across from the Southern most Island, the Cats looked on in awe as they watched the society of Men grow under the guidance of THE FAWNS. As Men created stone structures and learnt how to cook with fire and honed their more advanced skills, the Cat’s admiration soon turned to jealousy. The Cats, not yet evolved enough to learn, took it upon themselves to steal and plunder. They stole food and items of beauty, snook into the homes of Men at night and slept by their fires.
Surprisingly the world of Men took pity on them. At this time a new community developed, one of collaboration and guidance. Deciding they posed no threat, Men allowed Cat’s to come around their fires and rest in their shelters. The Cat’s realised those who stayed quiet and were loyal to Men began to live more comfortable lives. Those who stayed within the townships and cities started to form families and social groups. Some of these groups began to form basic religion to the Moon God 'Anda'.
The Cats have recently decided it is time to start being treated equally to Men and do not like the idea of becoming subjugated by The Fawns. They developed their own groups and have cultivated their own skills and strengths. Cats excel at combat, have higher dexterity and have become adept at magics and herbalism. Only a limited number of Cats now live within The Fawn citadels.
The Mutual respect between Men and Cat’s did not prevail as Cat’s are often selfish. Now at night many Cats plague the World of Men. Using their new found skills to thrive. Most make a living though thievery and mercenary work, their proficiency owing to them rarely getting caught. This has led to them often being feared and disliked by others. Some cats have retained the old ways and are sociable with the Silent Walkers, Metonymy and
Players playing cats should have some sort of mask, make-up or prosthetic. Their clothing should be more early European in feel and colourful with fur showing a places. Cats have preference for smaller weapons and shields such as claws, knives, short swords and bucklers etc.
The Slumbervolk (Volk) originate, from The UNDERWORLD. They lived underground and are skilled miners, crafters and warriors. Due to this they are often photosensitive as they adapted to live by the luminescent glow of fungus. According to Volk legends one day a Malagait Volk opened the Lock on the crucible leading from the Underworld and left this passage to The DRUMBLE open. As the Volk arose into the OVERWORLD a conflict with the Silent Walkers was always destined.
Their natures very different, the Volk tried to teach the Silent walkers of the ways of furnaces and metal in vain. Believing their way was the right way to live, this conflict of interest soon turned to all out war. By the time the barrier went up around the Drumble most Volk had left to explore new CRUCIBLES and deep mines looking for a way back home. Those who were expelled were forced to make new lives on the surface.
Their encounters with the Silent Walkers still repeatedly ends in conflict. Evidently a long standing grudge remains between the Silent Walkers and Volk, with many Volk blaming them for the loss of their Ancestral home.
Volk society is split into THREE aspects:
I. TIRIGUSU (tir-ee-goo-su) "what has to be avoided". The priests and wise men. They worship the elements seeing Elemental magic as reincarnations of their spirituality. They do not believe in the power of Ethereal magic. Only after passing a harrowing test may a Volk become Tirigusu.
II. The MALAGAIT (mal-a-gate) "what has to be followed": The Nobility and warriors. These Volk earn the highest respect of their people.
III. The PIKAGAIT (pik-a-gate) "what has to be done" The workers and providers. The highest amongst this aspect are the artisans and crafters, below them the miners and foragers and finally the cooks and labourers.
As the years have passed Volk Society has adapted with many families now being made of a mixture of aspects. As suggested above the Malagait should be somewhat clean and well dressed, while the Pikagait are dirty and poorly dressed.
Volk costume consist of earthen colours, often with metal weaponry and armour, with a more militant or group orientated style. They have a slightly grubby appearance and have a tendency to have hair braided or in a top knot. Despite their slightly ragged look they are a proud people who are direct in their approach. They are business like and respond well to those they trade with, if characters earn their trust, they will be welcoming and generous too.
In the first age, the Rats were little more than animals living and surviving on pure instinct. Yet they were timid by nature preferring to live wild and free, avoiding the other inhabitants of Deka. Rats are also scavengers by heart and were known to steal scraps from the kills of others or take any interesting items left out at night by Silent Walkers or Metonymy.
As their populations grew, so too did the number of encounters rats had with other natives. Their encounters with the Silent Walkers and Metonymy usually ended in bloodshed, as by the Walkers of Carum, the Rats were seen as monsters. Very territorial they would viciously protect themselves with tooth and nail against intruders. The Rat’s fought many skirmishes with the Silent Walkers and Metonymy, until they decided to fall back into the shadows on the edge of the society, from here they observed.
From the caves and runways, they now called their homes they became inquisitive of the ways of the Walkers and began to mimic them. By the end of the 1st age, the Rats were not only walking on two feet, but they had also learnt to speak and were just starting to create a primitive culture of their own. They wielded weapons and hunted with spears, their path forever altered.
In their new form, they once again approached the world of Walkers and were greeted with caution. They began to trade with the items they had scavenged and accepted the teachings of Men, Silent Walkers and Metonymy as payment. For many hundreds of years, they continued in this manner, until they had gathered enough knowledge that they were ready to join the other races of Deka in the turnings of the 2nd age.
Now, in the Second Age, Rats thrive throughout the lands having forged a place for themselves tending to the needs of others, for a price. Whether that be foraging for that lucrative crafting component, managing food and drink establishments or running errands around town. It has also become apparent that Rats are innately proficient in the sciences of Herbalism and Physical Healing, allowing them to concoct the most intricate of elixirs and heal complex ailments.
Rats tend to be wary of the other races, they are happy to do business with them but tend to be more comfortable in the company of other Rats. This caution is in part due to the large extended families, with whom they spend the majority of their social time. Rats tend to find it easier to call all members of their extended family brother or sister (as keeping track of your 57 uncles and all their children’s children is an impossible task). The fast-growing Rat population has led to many rat exclusive organisations springing up around Deka, including the Rat guild of Beon and those who operate in the high seas in the South and East.
They have also established their own religion, rumours of which sweep through the sewers, caves and backstreets of many towns and cities all over Deka.
Anyone wishing to play a Rat must represent it by wear some form of a mask, prosthetic or face paint. Ears and fur; such as around the body or covering exposed skin at the edge of clothing, are also necessary when playing a rat. However, tails are optional.
Rats from the North of Deka more commonly belong to Rat exclusive organisations their dress often smart with an oriental feel. Whereas those from the South tend to like to get their hand dirty so are often are equipped with aprons, tool belts and other clothing that highlight this part of their nature.
Rats generally prefer small throwing weapons, daggers, sticks and short swords, especially those that are decorative and shiny or oriental in style.