One of the many things I lost after my bad weekend LARP experience was my willingness to slip into character. For as long as I’ve been gaming, I’ve been able to just kind of relax while thinking about my character for a game, and then I’m thinking -as- that character. No joke I could have dreams -as- my character, not just about them. I used to love doing that. Getting into character was never a problem before.
The ability theoretically persists even now, but I can’t relax. I’m too scared to because when I do fall into character like that, I lose my you ability to steer a story. I can only conceive of acting the way my character would. Getting into character is easy. Getting out is hard/borderline impossible for me. This is particularly unfortunate when I’m offering a version of the character that other people don’t pick up and engage with. I don’t have the ability to course correct and reinvent part or all of how the character presents or what they care about most in order to meet people where they are actually at.
A separate, but related problem is bleed. Some of you may have heard me say in the past year that I can’t play angry characters. This is why. I get in their head, and they get in mine, and then I bleed. And let’s just say that angry me never ends well.
I feel that to continue to indulge in either, now that I’ve recognized them as problematic behaviors, but before I find and establish appropriate safeguards, would make me an irresponsible gamer.