Safety, mechanics and calls

…as you went into the loo, there was a sign that said “Mind Your Head” – nice… and underneath someone had written “Don’t get your Hampton Court.” It’s not there any more. But not a day goes by that I don’t think about it.

-Martin Freeman, The Office

If you have any safety issues, questions or concerns during the event, we have a safety team to help. The safety team will do their best to deal with any question, complaint or concern in accordance with our Acceptable Behaviour policy.

Normally, the safety team will discuss any issues between themselves, but if you want an issue to be kept private or anonymous from particular members, let them know when you raise the issue.

The Safety Team will be identified during the workshops and each of them will wear a black ribbon.

Members of the Safety Team

Amy Mason
David Proctor
TBC (but we will have at least one person who is not Amy or David who is on the Safety Team)

Safety Calls

Calls and mechanics anybody can use

  • Stop The Game
    Everybody should stop what they’re doing and quietly await further instructions. This is for when something has gone seriously wrong and the Game/Safety Team’s full attention is needed on the situation, eg a serious medical incident. Please use your best judgement about how what to do if this is called. For example it may be useful for you to move out of the way or essential for you to stay still, etc.
  • Cut
    Stop roleplaying around the person who called it and check in for what they need. Allow them to get them out of situation and to the OC area. If you hear it, please make sure a member of the Safety Team is aware of the situation, especially if the person who called it isn’t in a position to attract their attention.
    This is for if you’re feeling very uncomfortable and want to get out of a situation. You don’t have to explain why you used it.
  • Lay off
    Dial down the intensity of what you’re doing, but continue roleplaying. The caller may include some useful information eg ‘Lay off, you’re too loud/too close’, etc. in an argument.
    Used when you’d like the intensity of something dialled back, but you’re ok to continue with your game.
    Lay off can also be used to indicate somebody is trying to roleplay about something that’s doesn’t have an interesting IC explanation.
    A: “Where were you just now – sneaking off with the Vatican Ambassador I bet? Heretic!! Guards! Arrest her!”
    B: “Lay off my lord, I was just using the ablutions”
    A: “…erm, yes, as I was saying, you’ve always been a good Protestant. What on earth are these guards doing here?”
    – In this example, Lay Off is used to indicate to the suspicious priest that the character was just answering an OC call of nature rather than doing something worth roleplaying the downfall of her character about, and the characters try quickly smooth it over in play. The heresy can be dealt with later when it’s actually had time to happen.
    It should go without saying but don’t use this to dodge something your character actually did!
  • ‘Look down’ (action, not a call) to do this: shade your eyes with one hand and look down:
    Ignore anybody who is doing this.
    This is used to get out of a situation or move through an area without people reacting to you for your OC comfort. You don’t have to return to where you’ve left from.
    If somebody uses this to leave a conversation with you, do your best to continue without remarking on it.
    Example – you realise you left your handbag/wallet in the toilet, but you are part of a small group conversation with a very high status character. IC, it would be unthinkably rude to leave, so you shade your eyes and nip off to recover it. When you return, you see the conversation is continuing so you rejoin and unshade your eyes. Nobody comments on why you’d left or returned and they do their best to bring you up to date on the conversation when they ask your opinion on the topic of discussion. It would also have been fine to walk back into the room IC and join another group of people.
  • Please give me more space (action, not a call) to do this: push your hands away from your at waist height.
    Step backward, but continue roleplaying.
    Used when you would like more personal space, but you’re ok to continue with your game. Drop your hands once you are comfortable. 
    Example: You are enjoying a conversation with someone, but you would prefer a bit more space for any reason. You use this gesture to let people know you would feel happier with more room.
  • It’s not what it looks like!
    The characters who shout this have been discovered in inappropriate intimacy, see below.

Intimacy mechanic

In this game the purpose of intimacy between characters is to promote story and add potential for scandal and blackmail rather than to physically simulate intimacy.
If your characters want to engage in obvious physical intimacy, stand near each other and optionally make light contact. If anybody walks near enough that it would be obvious to them what’s going on, do the following:
1) Break contact and look surprised
2) Clearly say “It’s not what it looks like!”
Roleplay should continue from there around the idea that a character has discovered something unexpected. It only has to be loud enough for your discoverers to hear, not the entire building!

Calls only the organisers will use

​Time In/Out/Freeze
Start/Stop/Freeze roleplaying.