Valley of Shadow

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Valley of Shadow is a Czech experimental larp, combining scenes where players ‘larp as usual’ with ones where they communicate using only dance – specifically blues dancing.


Valley of Shadow is set in a noir-style prison. It explores topics such as hopelessness, the cycle of violence, powerlessness – but also love, forgiveness and mercy. All the characters are members of a mobster “family” who got into a hopeless situation – partly through a fault of their own; partly because of an outside influence. At night, the prison falls silent and the characters return to their cells; to dream of a better life, in which they avoided their greatest mistake and did not choose hatred. The dream scenes will use blues dancing as a platform of communication, and they will tell a much lighter story of the golden youth of the jazz era and their one true love.


The game is for 36 players in one run and it takes cca 3 hours. Before the game, there are two days of workshops of Blues dancing and creation of characters and their stories. Participation fee is 110 - 140 EUR per run, food and hostel style accommodation included. The game has minimalistic and symbolic scenography, but lights and music play important part in creating the mood of it.


  • Pre-larp Workshop - workshops of dancing, character creation and non-verbal playing.
  • Played through dancing - the only way of communication in significant part of the game is through non-verbal playing and dancing Blues Vernacular Dance.
  • Slow take-off - dancing through one song.
  • Slow Landing- dancing through one song.
  • NPC - few of them to create mood and feeling of the game.
  • Soundtrack - for significant part of the game, considering it is played through dancing.
  • Tap Out - non-verbal and Safewords.
  • Debriefing - in small groups.
  • Third Person Principle - especially during debriefing, starting by naming the character (they did not need to do it before the game).
  • Fateplay - stories of characters are fully set before the game (partially by organisers, partially in workshop co-creation)
  • Alter-egos - two players play one character.
  • Dream Scene - cca half of the game is focused on dreams of their characters and is expressed only through dance.
  • Time Jump - the game focuses only on important moments in lives of characters, so time is inconsistent and there are time jumps incorporated as well as Flashback.


In Knutepunkt book 2019.


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