Greetings Eldritch Community,
Now that Event 1 is wrapped and everyone has had some time to recover from an exciting weekend in Arnesse, we wanted to take some time to talk about a few items related to Eldritch going forward, including event sites, our yearly schedule, accessibility, and more.
Our Site & DAtes
Tickets for Eldritch Event 2, the Wrath, will go on sale to existing players at 10 AM, tomorrow morning, and then open up to new players the following week. As some of you may know, our staff has been discussing what site we plan to use for the next few events. Middleground has been struggling with getting the required permits to run public events and cannot take payments for us using the site. Several options have been proposed for us to use the site for free, private events, but after evaluating those options our staff does not feel they are a good fit for our business model. Before I discuss our future plans, I want to be clear that Eldritch supports the Middleground project. Our staff have made very significant financial, time, and other contributions to that site over the years and in fact, have recently just hosted a donation drive that has generated almost $2,000 for the project. I would encourage anyone who has not donated, do so here. You can also join their Patreon for as little as $1 a month here. Please help with whatever is in your means! Lastly, let me say that once Middleground has sorted out their permits and can run events, it is our plan to return there.
All the above being said, we have decided to run our next event at the Millersylvania Retreat Center, which has hosted several previous Eldritch events. This is a very nice site overall with very good facilities and will be a good, interim event hosting space until Middleground is able to host us once again. We have been given feedback that there are some issues with the Millersylvania site concerning accessibility for players and we will address those in the section that talks more about accessibility. We take this feedback seriously and want to work to maintain our commitment to having Eldritch be an accessible game for as many players as possible.
Lastly, we have decided to cancel our planned October event but will be running a December game on the weekend of December 9-11, 2022, followed by an event in April. The reasoning for this has to do with some of the price changes that we are making. This weekend is well-positioned in advance of Christmas (unlike our previous date).
We have, as a staff, debated the pricing model of Eldritch for some time. We feel confident, based on our financial investment, time, and the results we’ve seen, that we are delivering a high-quality LARP experience. LARP-running is expensive, and it is even more expensive when you try to set a high bar for quality. This, combined with the increasing costs of things in the world in 2021-2022 have led us to make a decision to change the costs of a ticket for Eldritch. We simply feel the type of LARP experience we are delivering at Eldritch is worth the higher price point. Our staff works incredibly hard to create and deliver the best props, stories, and experiences each and every game. We want to continue to be able to keep that bar very high and still feel like we are also getting a reasonable return on the time and funding that we put into the LARP.
The new ticket price for all Eldritch events will be $110 per player. The optional food plan will be $40 per player. Purchasing both the food plan and the ticket for Eldritch will be a total of $150. We knew that increasing the price would have to go hand-in-hand with us still being mindful of people’s budgets. So, we have done several things to mitigate this cost and provide cost reducing alternatives for players.
1. We are reducing the total number of games run per year by one, from four per year, to three. This means that under our old pricing model, if you bought a ticket + meal plan, you would pay $95 per event, or $380 per year. Under the new model you would be paying $150 per event, or $450 per year. This is only a $70 total cost increase for the year under our new pricing model versus the older one.
2. We have instituted several options for players to reduce the cost of their tickets, or get free tickets by volunteering to help us! These ticket slots are limited but do provide some cost reduction:
Thursday Unload and Build Crew
There will be 3 tickets available for players to come down on Thursday and help us unload the truck as well as set-up the site (mods, check-in, etc). These slots are worth a free ticket ($110) to Eldritch. This does not include the meal plan. These players will need to show up with us on Thursday (day) and work through until Friday. We tend to finish all this around the afternoon on Friday. These will be available on the website and first-come, first-served.
Sunday Tear-Down and Load Crew
There will be 3 tickets available for players to stay after the event on Sunday. These folks will be responsible for cleaning up the mod, deco, and other equipment around site, as well as loading the truck. These slots will be worth a ½ price ticket to Eldritch ($55) and these players will need to remain with the Eldritch staff until the site and our gear is all packed up. These will be available on the website and first-come, first-served.
In addition to the above, we will have 5 tickets available to people who want to cook one of the meals. This slot will be worth a free ticket and meal plan ($150). A cook will be assigned one meal during the weekend, and they must shop for and provide ingredients for that entire meal (Eldritch will provide the money for players to shop for supplies). These cooks will do any prep necessary for the meal, serve it, as well as help clean up after (with additional volunteer helpers of course). Those interested in this position may reach out to us at email@example.com for more information.
We are keeping many opportunities to volunteer at Eldritch and earn Influence. We will have a number of shifts that players can sign up for in order to earn 1 Influence for the game. A player can sign up for as many of these shifts as they want, but they can only earn a maximum of 2 Influence per game with them. We will be arranging a volunteer sign up before the event and while we have a fixed number of slots for each of these opportunities, there are a lot of them for players to utilize.
Friday Set-Up Volunteers (1 Influence)
Players should arrive on Friday afternoon in the 12-3 PM range and can work a 2-hour shift helping the Eldritch staff finish setting up the site for game.
Check-In Volunteers (1 Influence)
When check-in opens, you assist the Eldritch staff in checking new and returning players into the game, getting them their items, and possibly answering some logistics or game questions. This shift is 2-3 hours and can run a bit longer than the average 2-hour shift, depending on players in attendance.
Cooking Assistants (1 Influence)
This is a 2-hour shift that involves helping the cooks set-up, prepare, serve, and then clean-up after their meals. This shift will be focused in and around the tavern and kitchen area of game.
NPC Shift (1 Influence)
Players volunteer to help us by running one of our NPCs. This shift is 2-hours in length.
Volunteer Marshal (1 Influence)
Players help by serving in the role of Marshal, organizing and running one of our player encounters. This is more specialized than an NPC shift as you may be asked to play an NPC in the encounter, as well as make sure that the mod is executed as it is written, and that the players stay safe. You will have to have read documents in advance and be familiar with the flow of the experience. Marshals are the final arbiters on staff run experiences and as such, are responsible for being knowledgeable of the rules, and making sure all players have an excellent time. Our encounters are generally scheduled to run for 2-hours but this may run a bit over.
Sunday Tear-Down Volunteer (1 Influence)
Players will stay after game for a 2-hour shift to help us clean-up the site. This can be taking down mod spaces, helping clean the kitchen, load the truck, or other general tidying up tasks.
We have heard some of your feedback about the inaccessibility of the Millersylvania site. Our hope is to mitigate it as much as possible with the following:
Site Safety - We have spoken with Millersylvania staff about the mole holes and hills in their fields that make them dangerous to walk through. They told us that they take such requests for safety very seriously and will attempt to fill in holes before our event. Either way, Eldritch staff has determined that we will make a conscious effort to not run modules that require players to run back and forth across the fields. Walking across a field may still happen, but we are going to do our best to run modules in other places that have safer footing.
Lighting - Eldritch staff will place lighting along the main pathway between the cabin rings and the tavern at Millersylvania. We still encourage players to bring their own source of light, and even use a flashlight for their safety if they need to.
Site Entertainment Logistics - We recognize that Middleground has the great benefit of having cabins and the tavern in one central location, whilst Millersylvania does not. We know it can be frustrating to miss out on something happening in one location, while you are unaware of it in another. While we run at Millersylvania, we will make a conscious effort to run plot through both the tavern and the cabin rings as much as possible. In the past, everything was sure to hit the tavern, but rarely the cabin rings. We think it makes sense to pass more NPCs through the cabin rings as well as the tavern. If it's as simple as directing an NPC to do a loop so that more players can interact with them, we'll make an effort to do that.
Combat - Many curated combat experiences will tend towards an opt-in format, similar to how they were run at event 1.
In addition to what Eldritch can do, Millersylvania offers an ADA compliant cabin right next door to the tavern. It has contains a ramp and indoor bathroom. That will be Eldritch's "OOG" cabin for those who need accessible lodgings. As usual, an additional, separate cabin will be set aside as a Safety cabin, which will be available 24/7 for players to use as an out of game space to decompress in.