Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The Wild, Wild West

The town of Blackrock is typical of the old wild west.  There are feuding families, lawmen trying to keep a lid on crime, and an influx of ne'er do wells and blackhearts drawn by the promise of gold.  What makes it unusual is that it's located in France.

Christian Lehmann was one of the inhabitants of the town and was kind enough to send over a link to the website (in the original French and translated to English).  The gallery for the Deadwood-inspired LARP features some great photographs from Sandrine Schwoerer of the complete town (!) that served as a set.


CoastConFan said...

Europe has some very interesting and committed LARP/historical reenacting groups, a few of which we have seen featured on Propnomicon. These groups run the gamut of bronze age villages, Roman encampments, Viking villages as well as the more common medieval and later groups. Of course the American Wild West folks has always been of interest to Europe, as was the case when lived there some 30 years ago.

Back in the US, SASS and other cowboy action shooters have brought higher levels of interest in the (often mythically portrayed) period. I’m glad Propnomicon showcases some of these groups from time to time as it really excites interest in props, costumes, and role playing. Oh yes, I almost forgot the Fantasy and Steampunk crowds, which are still going strong.

Wikipedia has a partial list of historical reenactment groups although I don’t see such obvious (and large groups) like the North South Skirmish Association

For fantasy LAPRs in the US try and

bea said...

I was stationed in Europe for allot of years and they DO have a wild west fascination over there. The same way we have a "Knights and castles" fascination over HERE. Particularly American Indians. Weird to see Dream catchers and indian art in a street market in Germany.

CoastConFan said...

Additionally, often overlooked are interesting Old West period analogues in the British Victorian empire such as Australia and South Africa. We tend to think of the Wild West as being solely the purview of the American Southwest, but that’s not really the case. Consider the film The Jackals (1967) starring Vincent Price (of all people) where bank robbers besiege a gold mining town in South Africa. Also think of Australia’s own Ned Kelly, the outlaw with the suit of armor, which is owned now by the Victoria Police Museum and is sometimes on display.

For that matter South America (not just Mexico) had its own wild west period – for example the shootout in 1908 in Bolivia with Robert Parker aka Butch Cassidy and Harry Longabaugh aka The Sundance Kid with soldiers. I’d really love to see somebody make Ned Kelly armor out of foam for a convention costume. These are all genre benders that are a lot of fun to explore.

Propnomicon said...

@ CoastConFan

One of my pet theories is that historical reenactment is LARPing for straights. Expose some of those folks to a live action fantasy game with high production values and I bet you could get them on board.

@ bea

My ex-wife served in Germany during the 80s. One of her most surreal experiences was discovering a massive American Indian encampment one weekend in the countryside. We're talking full costumes, tents and tipis, hand-made bows...the whole deal.

Julien Flamant said...


i'm one of the organiser of this larp. It feels strange to be featured in an article in english ^^
We do have some fantastic photos thanks to very dedicated players and their fantastic costume and this little western town.
Maybe we'll get some of you to play with us one day ;)


Julien Flamant said...


i'm one of the organiser of this LARP. It feels strange to read an article about us in English.
We do have so fantastic pictures thank to our little town and very dedicated players.
Maybe we'll get the pleasure to have english-speaking players among us ;)


bea said...

Let's not forget that the Big Cowboy shows toured Europe back in the day. Annie Oakley supposedly shot the ashes off a cigarette held by the newly crowned German Kaiser Wilhelm II at his request as a gun show trick at a party. He later opened WWI.
Woulda, coulda, shoulda,

bea said...

And let's be HONEST, Who doesn't want to dress up like "The man with no name"?