Larp census 2014 – How many larpers in the world ?

We want to count every larper, including you!

It only takes 1 minute to answer the main questions.

How many larpers in the world ?

That is the question of Aaron Vanek and Ryan Paddy and they decided to answer it with your help.

larp census

Why a global larp census?

Although some countries have rough estimates of their larp population, there has not been a comprehensive global census taken of self-identifying larpers on this scale. We really want to count everyone who larps, has larped, and wants to larp.

The information we acquire will be publicly shared so scholars can analyze the data and make conclusions that will, hopefully, increase both the quantity and quality of larps around the globe.


We will never share your email address.

If you choose to provide your email address, it will only be used very sparingly to notify you about the census.

If you provide email addresses for others who might be interested in the census, we will send emails to them immediately. We will not store their email addresses. To prevent them being spammed with repeated invitations to complete the census, we store a cryptographically hashed copy of their email address. It is not possible for us or anyone else to retrieve the original email addresses once they have been hashed.

Is this an academic or commercial enterprise?

Although we are consulting with noted larp scholars around the world on our methodology, this census is not sponsored by any academic institution or publication. The census is not a commercial enterprise, and all results will be shared free of charge.

What will you do with the results of the census?

After the census closes, we will release the data under a Creative Commons non-commercial license. Anyone will be able to access, review and use the data, provided it is not sold commercially. This data will be stripped of identifying information. If possible, an analysis of the data will be published in an academic journal. We may also be asking for help analyzing the data from interested parties.

Are you going to do this again and if so, when?

Yes, we hope to repeat this in a few years, to track changes in larp across the planet.

Who are you?

Aaron Vanek lives in Los Angeles and has been larping for nearly 30 years. He wrote and published an essay on the art of larp entitled “Cooler Than You Think: Understanding Live Action Role Playing” that is available as a free PDF download here. He is a founding member of Live Game Labs and Executive Director of Seekers Unlimited, a non-profit company that uses larp for education. He edited the 2012 and 2013 Wyrd Con Companion Books with Sarah Lynne Bowman, Ph.D.

Ryan Paddy lives in New Zealand and has been larping for 25 years. His editing of the Live action role-playing game article on Wikipedia has led to its recognition with Good Article status. He is a founder and committee member of the New Zealand Live Action Role Playing Society.

You can reach us at or by emailing or

We would like to offer our special thanks to everyone who generously helped to review and translate the Larp Census prior to its launch: Whitney “Strix” Beltrán, Rafael Bienia, Sarah Lynne Bowman, Nat Budin, Krzysztof M. Chmielewski, Elin Dalstål, Amber Eagar, Kryštof Šámal and the LARP Academia list, Ajit George, Malcolm Harbrow, J. Tuomas Harviainen, Nathan Hook, Taisia Kann, Marissa Minna Lee, Stephanie Pegg, Christopher Sandberg, Jaakko Stenros, Evan Torner, Steve Vig, Mike Young, Gilles Cruyplants, Tatiana Shutova, Luiz Falcão, Baptiste Cazes, Karijn van der Heij, Suus Mutsaers, Alexander Miroforides


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