Our fantasy LARP would like to expand combat magic to include breath/flame/area-of-effect attacks/spells.
How can we phys-repp such effects?
- Must be reasonably1 safe for all participants (e.g. CO2 Fire extinguishers are a Bad Idea (TM))
- Should telegraph hits clearly, in the sense that it is clear if a combatant was hit by some effect, or if they were not (at least clear to the person hit).
- Should be as flashy and visible as possible. For example I have seen (manually) pressurised water sprayers being used at other LARPS - these basically tick all the boxes, but are really not very flashy or visible.
- The LARP I am a part of has a hit-based and rather competitive combat system. For combat magic to work in our setting it also needs to be somewhat competitive, e.g. not take 10 minutes to prepare a 1 second attack.
In the past we tried smoke effects, but these were difficult to handle:
- Outdoors weather/wind situation has a huge impact on their usefulness
- Most importantly it was quite impossible for all involved (caster and his allies as well as potential victims) to judge when they were affected/hit by a smoke effect --> this led to very varying results when used and was the reason for some frustration of players.
1 After all there is some inherent risk in running about in the woods and hitting each other over the head with various weapons. I think 100% safety is neither achievable nor desirable, hence the 'reasonably'.