If you’ve seen the movie Role Models, congrats. You’re living life correctly. If you haven’t seen it, then reevaluate because you have not yet perfected yourself.

Okay, that’s a bit dramatic, but Role Models is an awesome movie and everyone should see it. Quick overview: two lazy salesmen with really sad lives and terrible driving skills are assigned to work with kids to avoid jail (note to self: totally can commit a crime now, kids are awesome). One of these youths loves fantasy worlds and chat rooms. He wears capes in public and all that good stuff.

Artie (the kid) introduces the rest of the main cast to LARP as a member of the kingdom of Xanthia. A lot of the film’s pivotal scenes and action sequences – Artie stabbing the king, Artie’s caretaker Danny calling Artie’s parents out for making fun of his love of fantasy, the epic battle at the end – have to do with LARP.

So what is LARP, anyway? L.A.R.P., or live-action roleplaying, is an umbrella term for people who act as characters in a world that is not their own. This can include anything from playing “house” as kids (lamest game ever) to first-person videogames. So, basically, every male who has ever existed since the 80s has played LARP.

While of course, fantasy worlds can be sheltered within basements and teen bedrooms, sometimes you can get out there and get a little sweaty instead of burning your eyes out of your head staring at a screen. Real-world LARPing differs based on what region you’re in, but nearly everywhere in the world has some kind of LARP.

In fact, if you’re bored, want to LARP, and have some money to burn, visit Denmark. It’s pretty popular there.

So, how does the Role Models version of LARP work? The theme of the worlds is set based on the foundation that creates the world in which LARP occurs. For example, the Society for Interactive Literature was founded in 1982 as theater-style LARP. The style of LARP used in Role Models (called LAIRE in the film), based on the group Dagorhir’s style of play, is fantasy. Fantasy is reminiscent of Medieval or Renaissance-style. Characters are meant to originate in the 5th with villains from true fantasy world.

What all that means: knights fighting ogres. And each other. That is LARP.

This summer I was granted the unique opportunity to play fantasy-style larp with about 200 campers, boys between ages 8 and 15. They are vicious little mongrels with foam swords who don’t know mercy. I posed as the monster Medusa, and another camp counselor was my defender. Members of head staff were called the Dark Horde and had massive clubs.

I have never participated in anything more awesome.

Obviously, when playing LARP, one needs to consider all the little details – including music. Which is why I’m adding a short guidelines list for choosing a mix for LARPing, and some recommendations for music. Now listen, then get out there and try LARP. You won’t regret it.

LARP Background Music Rules and Regulations:

1. Try to find music with as few words as possible. Lyrics are a distraction and also break up the flow of gameplay.

2. Scores from superhero movies are almost always the best.

3. If music is really needed, go for the extremely weird first. I mean like steampunk. Or Dream Theater.

4. Don’t touch country, top 40 or reggae with a 10-foot pole while larping. It will get you killed immediately.

5. If you’re still stuck, go for classical. Violins are the most dramatic instrument of them all. Everyone loves a good violin track to run around and stab people to.

Try these out:

1. “Sons of Odin” and “The Destroyer” from Thor: Music from the Motion Picture (or just the whole album)

2. “Sleep Isabella” and “Building Steam” by Abney Park

3. “Odyssey” by Dream Theater

4. “On the Rooftop with Quasimodo” and “Rage of Poseidon” by Apocalyptica

5. “Take Flight” and “Heist” by Lindsey Stirling

At presstime, this author has been decapitated 12 separate times by 12 different attackers.

Photo via Flickr/Kam Abbott