LARP club at Sonoma State bridges fantasy and reality

If you are looking to be part of a complex fantasy game, that blends a 1990s murder mystery ambiance with the styles and intensity of “Game of Thrones,” it would be wise to enter into a world of improv drama known as “Sanguine Dreams.” Many on campus may know of this group as “The Vampire Club,” it is formally called Vampire: The Masquerade troupe LARP (live action role playing). Though there used to be similar LARP groups that met at Sonoma State, “Sanguine Dreams” is the final game that remains on campus today. Supported by the CAG-SSU club (Collaborative Association of Gamers and Storytellers), students, alumni, and local theater enthusiasts meet once a week on Sunday nights year-round in the bottom floor of Ives, from 7 p.m. until 11 p.m, to escape the real world and enter an entirely different society, as an entirely different character (from themselves).

“The game is one of politics, intrigue and personal horror,” Collin said.

Personal horror refers to the scene of this world: a dark one, with menacing vampires and ruthless competition for power, all set in 1996. In the game there are both internal and external antagonists. Though it is all pretend, the members cherish their time in this created fantasy realm because it allows them to express themselves, socialize, and be a part of a unique experience each week.

“The feeling one gets from playing the game is very similar to the feeling you get when you watch a good movie and it is like you have experienced the story,” Sonoma State alumnus Christopher said.

The current story being played, Sanguine Dreams, has been going on for the last two years. A new story is usually begun about every three. The organization itself has been  at Sonoma State since 2000 and some members today have been a part of the group since its  beginning. Community members  are aware of the game because it is being played worldwide, with a little research anyone can find out where they can join in locally. The website offers a plethora of information.

It does not matter where you come from or what your experience is with acting or LARP, everyone is welcome; and after, the group often heads over to Sheri’s diner for some real world fun.

“Really, the 30 to 40 people here each week are here to tell a story,” Christopher said.