Jargon Buster

This is basically just a dictionary of terms you may be unfamiliar with which are commonly used in and around our games. If you’re looking for a general overview then that’s what the About page is, if you want specific questions answered then check our FAQ.

Brief – Before each event a set of system instructions, safety instructions and information about the time and place in which the game is set is given to the group of players. This is ‘The Brief’.

Crew – The group of people who help put together an event. This is sometimes used to describe people who are helping to put together the event but not in charge, the people in charge are the refs.

Debrief – After each event the refs explain what was actually going on (as this may not be obvious to all of the players depending on what happened) and give players a chance to ask questions about the game they just played and talk about their characters.

Decompression – Time spent talking about the event and getting the last vestiges of the character and their desires out of your brain. This usually includes a formal debrief led by the refs. There’s a handy guide to reasons why we reccomend decompression time here.

DPC – Stands for Directed-Player Character. These are people playing characters that the refs have specifically asked to do something in order to further the plot of the game but other than this direction they act as they believe their characters would.

Event – A planned game including system, setting and safety brief, game-play, debrief and decompression time afterwards.

Game World – The fictional universe in which a game takes place. This is a self-consistent fictional setting with elements that differ from the real world. (eg. demons, shrinking reality bubbles etc.)

Get-In – The Get-In is the time which the refs and crew use to set-up the event, planting props and putting together phys-reps or anything else the game might require.

In-Character – Actions and speech that are consistent with the character you are playing whilst you are playing them.

NPC – Stands for Non-Player Character. These are characters played by members of the crew who are there to further the plot of the game.

Out-of-Character – Actions and speech that are the player’s own rather than the character they are playing.

Phys-Rep – Short for ‘physical representation’ this is something physically present which represents something else. Often they are purple pieces of paper with text on them descrbing something which the players should imagine is actually there. For example on a door is a purple piece of paper reading; ‘Yawning maw filled with teeth. Inform a ref if you walk through.’

Plot – The main events of the game, devised and presented by the refs and crew as an interrelated sequence within which the players act.

Prop – Short for ‘property’ this is something that has been created or brought for the game so that the players can interact with something physically. This usually looks as is.

PC – Stands for Player Character. These are characters played by the players who act in accordance with their character and discover the plot.

Players – People taking part in the game by playing characters. They are also called PCs.

Refs – The people who have planned and carry out the game.

Setting – This is also called the Game World. The fictional universe in which the game takes place. This is a self-consistent fictional setting with elements that differ from the real world. (eg. demons, shrinking reality bubbles etc.)

System – The rules of the game.

Time-In – The beginning of the game, and also what the refs call to start the game after the brief has finished.

Time-Out – The end of the game, and also what the refs call to finish the game before the debrief.

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