Leveling up your kit

Level up your Larp: Kit Level Examples

Introduction to CP & Kit

So the internet ate my first super-long version of this Note; I'm going to recap: 1) The official rules for CP & Kit are found here. The most important section regarding this note specifically is the second paragraph under the "Kit Levels & CP Awards" heading. 2) One of the founding principles for Brittanis is maximum immersion in-character and in-game. Just about everything we try to do has this as a consideration. If we were awarding Character Points to Brittanis as if the game was a player, we'd be getting 0 across the board-- we're trying to increase the costumes, weapons, and prosthetics of the game every single event. We're trying to reach the same goals for the game as a whole that are set out in the rules for players. 3) Being awarded less than "max" CP in a category is NOT a judgement on a player, nor is it Staff saying you're not good enough-- quite the opposite. Getting the the BONUS CP from a category is us saying thank you for working with us to make the game better. 4) It's SUPPOSED to be hard to get the max bonus. The CP awards are intended to be a goal to strive towards-- just like we're striving towards making the NPC kit adhere to the same standards. The vast majority 5) In regards to costuming specifically, the rules state: Level 3: +.25 CP; highly-immersive, Brittanis-appropriate garb (see nation/race descriptions and Brittanis Pinterest page for appropriate suggestions); lots of trim, texture, detail and accessories; renfaire CAST or re-enactor quality clothing; weathering or antiquing of garb. Again-- this is meant to be a GOAL for players, not as a negative judgement if they don't meet it. Right now, I (Jason, the Director) don't have any Level 3 costume in my own collection either-- it's a goal. Imagine a hypothetical event-- The heroes come back to camp after a long and hard-fought battle. They do what all sane heroes do when it's time to rest-- they peel off their armor and work on repairing it, talk amongst themselves, eat and drink and refresh themselves. The armor comes off and underneath are plain shirts, pants, tunics, tabards with no adornment or decoration. No accessories, jewelry, or accoutrements that tie a player's brain into to the game. These are also the times when players breaking character are also the most common-- I don't see this as a co-incidence. One of the primary reasons that "in camp" is where the most breaking of Decorum happens is that while many players have spectacular armor, once that armor comes off the costumes beneath are far less immersive and subconsciously players feel less in-game and less immersed in the game world. Players drift from character because they don't have anything tying their brains back to the game world. DETAIL is the key word for Level 3 costumes: detail in accessories-- especially multiple pieces of jewelry in a theme that fits your character detail in fabric-- a woven pattern like linen is ALWAYS more visually interesting (and comfortable in hot weather!!) than plain broadcloth detail in construction-- pleats, gathers, yoked shirts/chemises, etc detail in decoration--embroidery, trim etc go a LONG way to making a costume look more "real" and less "Museum Replicas"
The end-goal of Level 3 costume should be this: Your character aids the immersion of the game and is as visually interesting when they take their armor OFF as when they have it on. And if your character doesn't wear armor, your costume should be helping keep other players immersed in Brittanis all the time.
Take a look through the Brittanis Pinterest boards for examples of what I'm talking about-- you'll see hundreds of examples of the kinds of details, accessories, and decorations that make a Level 3 costume. http://pinterest.com/brittanislarp/boards/ The example I hold up as what Brittanis could be is Dumnonii Chronicles in the UK-- their costumes use a concept called "coolthentic," which means period accuracy is not necessarily adhered to in favor of what looks best for players to help keep each other 100% in the game mindset. Their warriors who wear armor look just as awesome after they take their armor off as when they are fighting int he shield-wall. http://www.dumnonni.com/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=4024 It's a goal for all of us to strive for-- working together and literally "leveling up" our game. We believe that everyone does better when EVERYONE does better.

Kit Level Examples

Brittanis is a game that focuses on immersion in the game world. We do our best to encourage players and NPCs alike to remain in character, acting as their characters would, as long as possible. It's a thing many of us are still getting used to, but the overwhelming reaction from our players has been that when people are wearing good costume and kit, it is easier to stay in character. IT is for this reason and many others that Brittanis offers rewards to players who invest in good kit for their characters. As such, I'm going to post some pictures here of different levels of costume from our Pinterest boards. These are all taken from the Briton racial Pinterest board, to be used as examples. If there is interest, I might do the same for other races as well. Level 1: + 0 CP; Obvious street/mundane clothes of any kind; t-shirts, ANY Blue DENIM, obvious tennis shoes, printed fabrics Street clothes abound in both of these pictures, as do out of place things like sunglasses. The cowboy hat int he background is also a no-go. Tennis shoes, white socks, street clothes and sunglasses.   Level 2, +.10 CP: no modern/mundane clothing or footgear obviously visible (spats/boot covers are level 2), “playtron” level Brittanis-appropriate garb and gear. Most mass-produced garb or costuming you buy online is going to fall into this category. Details, trims, accents, etc are required for Level 3. This outfit is a solid costume-- no modern clots to be seen. It needs trim, detail, weathering and accessories to get it to Level 3. A little bit of trim on the cuffs is headed in the right direction. Adding to that trim and adding layers, accessories and weathering will level up the costume here. A solid costume, ready for more detail-- trim, weathering, jewelry, and accessories. This surcoat, worn over armor, is Level 2 for sure. All the additions mentioned above would take it to Level 3. Solidly Level 2 dress. The belt and dagger are in the right direction; additional accessories, weathering, and trim would get her up to Level 3. This is a specific case-- an arming doublet/gambeson/jack. If the wearer takes this off WITH his armor, it's considered part of the armor for Kit purposes. If the player wears the gambeson without armor as a costume, then it will need all the above requirements to get it up to Level 3. Another solid Level 2 costume. This one has layers, and the beginning of accessories on the belt and with the gloves. Some trim and/or detail and weathering would get this up to Level 3.   Level 3: .25 CP; highly-immersive, Brittanis-appropriate garb (see nation/race descriptions and Brittanis Pinterest page for appropriate suggestions); lots of trim, texture, detail and accessories; renfaire CAST or re-enactor quality clothing; weathering or antiquing of garb.
Henry here may seem to be a Level 2 costume until you take a closer look at the details-- the add-ons to the belt, jewelry, and most especially the weathering-- this costume has been weathered and distressed to look as if it's been worn by the King for months on end. It doesn't look like a costume at all. The faux dirt around the hem, underarm and neckline as well as on the sleeves make this into Level 3 kit. Tons of things to like in this Level 3 kit: multiple types of trim, contrasting colors in the lining, excellent props and accessories. While Brittanis players are not re-enactors, coolthentic ideas for kit can be found in abundance among the SCA and other re-enactment groups. This costume has multiple layers--both with their own separate trims-- as well as eye-catching details on the hem and the collar. This dress has everything: interesting fabrics, layers, trim, and weathering at the bottom hem. Wonderfully detailed under-sleeves, multiple layers of different fabric types, trim on all pieces, and fantastic accessories. And best of all, check out all the weathering on the costume around the bottom and the edges-- it looks like Boromir has been traveling all over the place for weeks on end. If you want to do the "all black" look, this is the only way to pull it off at Level 3: multiple fabric types, textures, and looks combined with effective weathering techniques. All black is one of the hardest looks to pull off and hit Level 3, but it's certainly possible. So as you can see, there are plenty of ideas and suggestions for how to level up your kit. Google searches for "weathering costumes" and "adding trim to garments" will get you to tutorials that can walk you through it step by step. It's not too difficult, and the game will reward you for leveling up your kit as well!