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Johanna Koljonen is an experience designer and media analyst, with a continuing career as a writer, broadcaster, author and critic. She is a popular lecturer on larp and topics related to narrative participation. She was lead editor of and a significant contributor to the 2019 volume Larp Design. Her groundbreaking larp criticism, in essays like “Eye-Witness to the Illusion: The Impossibility of 360° Role-Playing” and “The Dragon Was the Least of it: Larp As Ephemera and Ruin” are widely quoted in the field. She is he co-author of the book-length larp autopsy Dragonbane – The Legacy. She also won the innovator category of the The Swedish Grand Journalism Prize of 2011.

Johanna Koljonen
Born (1978-06-17) June 17, 1978 (age 46)
Years active1995-present

Johanna co-founded the Nordic Larp Talks together with Andie Nordgren and Petter Karlsson and has hosted them since 2010.


Larpwright (designer/co-designer)

  • Fenriskampanjen, ca 1996-1999

Additional Design

Executive producer

Character Writing


  • Safety and Calibration in Larp, Larpwriter Summerschool, July 2016

Short Talks


  • Assistant editor, What Do We Do When We Play?, 2020.
  • Larp Design: Creating Role-Play Experiences, Bifrost 2019, with Jaakko Stenros, Anne Serup Grove, Aina Skjønsfjell, and Elin Nielsen.
  • Founder, with Jaakko Stenros, and editor in chief of the panclou role-playing game fanzine (1997-), which had a formative effect on the early developments of the live role-playing theory movement in the Nordic Countries.


  • 'Carolus Rex. The Flagship of Enclosed Space Opera.' in Markus Montola and Jaakko Stenros, eds: Nordic Larp, Fëa Livia 2010.
  • 'En Stilla Middag Med Familjen. First Person Bourgeois Drama.' in Markus Montola and Jaakko Stenros, eds: Nordic Larp, Fëa Livia 2010.
  • 'Dragonbane. Tangible Fantasy, Plausible Magic.' (with Tiinaliisa Multamäki) in Markus Montola and Jaakko Stenros, eds: Nordic Larp, Fëa Livia 2010.
  • Introduction to the catalogue for Game Continent at the Aros Modern Museum in Aarhus. Game Continent was a 2010 work by Anders Bojen and Kristoffer Ørum.
  • ’The Dragon Was the Least of It: Dragonbane and LARP as Ephemera and Ruin’, Montola & Stenros (eds): Playground Worlds. Creating and Evaluating Experiences of Role-Playing Games. Ropecon ry, 2008.
  • ‘Eye-Witness to the Illusion. On the Impossibility of 360° Role-Playing’, Donnis, Gade, & Thorup (eds): Lifelike. Knudepunkt 2007, 2007.
  • ‘I could a tale unfold whose lightest word would harrow up thy soul. Lessons from Hamlet’, Montola & Stenros (eds): Beyond Role and Play. Tools, Toys and Theory for Harnessing the Imagination. Ropecon ry 2004.
  • ‘Why do bad LARPS happen to good people?’, Gade, Thorup & Sander (eds): As Larp Grows Up. Theory and Methods in Larp, Projektgruppen KP03, 2003.

Contributor to panclou, Roolipelaaja and Playground Magazine.