Children and young people are welcome at Orion Sphere LRP. We feel that it is important to involve young people in the hobby to keep it vibrant and alive, and also that it is unfair to exclude parents from doing something they enjoy. At events, children are encouraged to engage with the game alongside their parents, rather than in designated “kids plot” or certain areas. We do acknowledge that certain aspects of the game may be difficult for younger children to understand, so we have a staged approach, allowing young people more access to the full game as they get older.
The presence of children can be seen to change the nature of a LRP game by some adults, and can be seen as potentially immersion breaking. Our intent is to integrate children into the game and give them opportunities to roleplay while retaining immersion for all participants as best as possible. Children at events must roleplay characters who are children, and their parents or carers must roleplay characters who are their parents or carers. As they age, children gain access to more game skills and can participate in the game to a greater degree.
Although children and young people are welcome, Orion Sphere LRP is not an explicitly family-friendly system. Some more mature themes may appear in the game from time to time, and other players are not expected to moderate their language in the presence of others any more than their characters would do. Additionally, children playing the game are playing characters in the game world, and as characters can be killed (although young children are non-combatants). Adults are expected to treat young characters as if they were children of their own or another Faction – children attacking another character may suffer retaliation.
In the universe of Orion Sphere LRP, the life of a spacefaring crew is generally all-encompassing. FTL journeys across known space can take months, or even years for slower spacecraft. The time taken for these journeys means that most spacecraft are fairly self-sufficient homes and workplaces as well as vehicles. Characters have lives outside of events – they can have relationships, children and families as they go about their lives traversing the galaxy. The amount of time involved means they cannot commute back to see their families regularly, so many elect to have their families with them, often all performing different jobs aboard ship or as part of a company or group. Although the exact nature of the family bond can be different across different species, practically all sophont species have societal structures that are in place to care for their young in one way or another.
Although having children on board ship is not universal, it is not uncommon. Starships endure a long time, and many generations of the same family might have grown up aboard the same ship, possibly being trained to take over their parent’s roles. The Orion Sphere is a dangerous place, but many spacers consider it a point of pride that they do not hide their children away from these dangers, and teach them the reality and skills necessary to survive from a young age. Some characters might decide to leave their children on board their orbiting ship at events, while others might bring them to the Megacorp’s gatherings to teach them or make use of their help.
Children under 7 are subject to the following rules:
These rules reflect that very young children may have difficulty engaging with other people roleplaying, and distinguishing between in-character contexts and out-of-character contexts.
Children aged 7-11 are subject to the following rules:
We expect children of this age to be able to roleplay and participate in the game, although with some restrictions to reduce the complexity that they will have to deal with. Children in this age range may not be able to roleplay for long periods of time, and may require breaks back in their Faction camp or in the OOC area.
Young People aged 12-15 are subject to the following rules:
Children of this age are becoming adults, and are generally are just as able to remaining in-character as any adult. We assume that roleplayers at this age are able to participate and roleplay fully in the game setting with very few restrictions.
Over the age of 16, we consider young players to be full participants at the event. At this age, players do not need to be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult and can automatically play a full character with skills and participate in combat. Players aged 16 years or older are charged full price for event tickets.
Young people under the age of 18 must be aware of the legal restrictions upon them. They should not bring any alcohol to events, accept alcohol from other players or attempt to order alcohol from the bar or caterers – doing so puts them at risk and could potentially damage the entire event. Anyone caught breaching this restriction will be refused further entry to our events until they turn eighteen.