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Mechanic: Canopic Jar Opening Phases

The Ancient Egyptians believed that only a perfectly preserved body, prepared with the right rituals, was able to carry its owner into the Fields of Reeds. Protecting the corpse against the decomposition of the wet organ tissues by removing and storing them separately, was thus both ritual and necessity. Stomach, lungs, liver and intestines were stored in canopic jars, each dedicated to a specific deity to watch over the remains. The heart - believed to be the centre of the soul - was removed, ablated and then stored in the mummy's now empty chest cavity to make sure its owner was able to stand the Trial of Maat. 

In the game, we will have props for the four Canopic Jars. At four defined points over the course of the game, all characters will gather to open them one at a time. Each opening marks the beginning of a new phase of the LARP and each of the phases is dedicated to another aspect within your characters’ descriptions. This is the order of phases (and related character aspects): Passion, Ambition, Vice and Crucible.  
The opening of the jars is taking place in character, but the phases are a meta mechanic for you as players. They are intended to help you keep track of time and also to provide you the opportunity to focus on different aspects of your characters. Please use this as inspiration for your game - a prompt, not a directive. 


The order and effect for the Canopic Jar Phases are the following:


Phase 1: 

  • Organ: Stomach

  • Focus: Passion

  • Inspiration: Have your character engage in activities they enjoy or are fascinated by - even if it goes against some social norms or notions of common decency.


Phase 2:

  • Organ: Lungs

  • Focus: Ambition

  • Inspiration: Have your character seize every opportunity to get what they want or achieve their goal - even if it is at the expense of someone else.

Phase 3:

  • Organ: Liver

  • Focus: Vice

  • Inspiration:  Have your character give in to their base desires and even actively seek out ways to excessively indulge in their vice - without regard for their own and others’ well-being. 


Phase 4:

  • Organ: Intestines

  • Focus: Crucible

  • Inspiration: Bring your character to the breaking point: Pursue every passion, escalate every conflict, indulge every desire to tear down their personality’s very foundations. And finally take them to the crossroads: Will they be consumed or get a chance to change their ways?

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