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Granland (Swedish: Granland or literally "Land of Pines") is a Swedish soldier larp campaign that's been ongoing since 2008. The games take place in a fictional medieval world with the same attributes as the real world - placing the Granland-fiction in the "Alternate Earth" category. Granland is one of Swedens most active larp-campaigns at the moment, with about 3-4 games per year in average. The campaign has been described as highly ambitious and well organized with focus on realistic immersion, social realism, high-quality equipment, role-playing and character creation. The campaign also involves elements of war, which are used as a catalyst for creating and improving the mutual immersion. The main focus of the campaign is the cultural conflict between the progressive nationalist nation of Granland, and the traditional and deeply religious organisation known has Heliga Armén (Swedish: The Holy Army).

Cultural expressions

Auxilia in the Holy Army, Photo: GeddaFors Film

Granland does not limit itself to only making larps, but also involves many types of cultural expressions with a base in the fictional world known as Ordavesvärlden (Swedish: The world of Ordaves). Participants and organizers regularly create works of music, art and literature inspired by or taking place in the fictional world portrayed in the games. Several types of media have also been professionally produced for the Granlands-campaign, including but not limited to;

* A book containing the campaigns fiction, published by Ersatz 
* A strategy board game known as "Granlandsspelet" (Swedish: The Granland game) by Olof Blomqvist
* A short film produced by GeddaFors Film *
* Several songs by Patriarkus *
* A small LARP-convention known as GranCon, being hosted in June each year since 2010. 

Participatory culture

Depending on the game, participants may create their own characters and plots within the fictional shell provided by the organizers of the game - or be given a pre-written character from the organizers. Almost all of the fiction is provided by the organizers for each game, the participants are instead free to choose between a finite amount of character-concepts. Most players will portray a squad of soldiers who are part of one of the two armies, often making their personal expression in regards to equipment and character background somewhat limited. However, the games often allows for many types of characters within the provided fiction and Granland has become known for having a good balance between a common fictional ground and personal expression through character creation.

Granland has become famous for hosting games that places a lot of focus on getting players involved in the making of the games - and thus generally having players with much better understanding of the concept and feeling of the game then other Swedish larps. This is accomplished by having a very large amount of pregame activities, often involving weekly social meet-ups, parties, workshops for character-creation, practical workshops for creating equipment and a large convention being hosted each year since 2010 known as GranCon.

The fiction

The Granland fiction is based on Medieval Europe and the Middle-East, but using large amounts of inspiration from different historical eras; primarily the 17th and 18th century and Ancient Rome. The world has the same attributes as the real world, thus excluding classical fantasy themes such as for example non-human races and magic.

The main plot in the campaign is the ongoing war between the Holy Army and Granland. A in many ways pointless war which began with a land-dispute over a border-territory between the two nations of Ala Rike (controlled by the Holy Army) and Granland. The war this far has resulted in the creation of the Holy Army and the rise of the Penitent belief (a fundamentalist sub-category of the religion Ordaves) as well as a Coup d'état in Granland by the liberal and capitalistic elite. These two extremist organisations are so devoted to hatred and fear of one another that peace will only come by the complete annihilation of one of them.


Civilians from Måsland, Photo: Björn Kallander
  • Granland: An authoritarian, militaristic and patriotic nation inspired by the early liberal ideas of 18th and 19th century Europe.
  • Heliga Armén: A fundamentalist and theocratic army inspired by the medieval crusades and the Catholic Revival of the 16th century.
  • Måslänningarna: An oppressed people who are waging a guerrilla war with the hope of creating their own country.
  • Vita Vingarna: A deeply religious and land-less order inspired by the Crusader Knights and the Free-masons.

External links