Universal Game System

Learn to run interactive roleplaying STEM and SEL adventures

Run educational role-playing adventures where the only limit is your imagination.

Live Action Role-Playing, or LARP for short, is a type of role-playing game where the players and staff physically act out their characters’ actions and interactions in a live setting.

Why use LARP adventures in your summer camp or educational program?  Because educational LARPs, called eduLARP, are powerful vehicles for improving the following:

  • Immersion:  Exciting stories capture the student’s/player’s and the staff’s imagination
  • Interactivity: A game system that provides a sense of autonomy and belonging to increase engagement with the story and learning content
  • STEM retention & transfer: When the lesson pertains directly to the student’s or player’s interests and motivation, the learning doesn’t just “stick”, it also gets applied outside of the learning environment. Transfer is considered the pinnacle of deep learning.
  • Social Emotional Learning (SEL): Allowing players to explore different situations in a safe space – especially when they are playing a character – provides an opportunity for experimentation and openness to new perspectives
  • Camper/Client retention: With the ability to run virtual off-season events for campers and cumulative adventures that allow the player to a constant sense of progress, it’s much easier to retain your player base
  • Staff retention: Where else can staff play a character and maybe even dress in a costume while teaching?  When your work feels like play, you keep coming back for more… especially when you are learning as much as your players
  • Revenue growth:  Along with retention, there are many ways to add more programs outside of your typical schedule or location that can continue to generate more revenue

Learn how to run a LARP with the Universal Game System and watch your programs grow.

Guardian Adventures creates online and in person courses for summer camps, school & afterschool programs, and recreation departments which teaches them how to run exciting roleplaying adventures. 

The Universal Game System (UGS) is a full live action role playing (LARP) game system that allows you or your staff to create your own programs based on our interactive rules and various themes. Established themes include: Fantasy Heroes, Zombie Defenders, Wilderness Protectors, Espionage Spy, Space Adventurers, and Superheroes. 

Adventures can be designed for ages 7 and up (although instructors can also run a simplified version for ages 4 and up). Roleplaying is an outstanding modality for children and teens to learn and practice both academic and life skills in a safe and fun environment. As a result, out of school programs running the UGS with the educational add-ons can apply for government grants, contracts, and other funding for offsetting learning loss.

We recommend a minimum ratio of 1:5 for ages 4-5, 1:6 for ages 6-7, 1:8 for ages 7-10, 1:10 for ages 11 -15, 1:15 for ages 16+  However, we also suggest that there is either an older teen or another adult present to be the Antagonist for each group. If you are running a summer camp, your state may mandate lower ratios.

Previous Experience: If the person running your LARP has no previous experience in running a roleplaying game (RPG) or live action roleplaying game, then we suggest you get started with our UGS Lite.  This is a much simpler version of our standard UGS and is a good starting point to see how LARP is received by participants in your camp or program.

If you have experience with an RPG (tabletop or computer) then you should have an easy time learning how to create a LARP using the standard UGS.  However, a game like Dungeons & Dragons is actually more complex than our program which means it can be run by anyone who enjoys creative games. 

The Universal Game System (UGS) includes:

  • All of the instructions needed for creating and performing an interactive and educational role-playing program run by your staff
  • Online training course for your staff in how to run our Universal Game System and adventures
  • Instruction in how to run virtual zoom-based UGS adventures for your campers during the off-season (a great retention tool!)
  • Step-by-step training videos for even deeper comprehension
  • Certificate of Completion for each staff person
  • One hour of zoom consulting to address questions your staff may have
  • Online community for trading ideas and requesting support (Coming Soon)
  • Optional additional online or in-person training for your staff by one of our instructors
  • Materials for marketing and promotion


If you want to make your LARP adventures into educational (EduLARP) adventures, then the STEM Guild Hall is an excellent add-on where your heroes “power up” with special skills in the role-play adventure by learning and demonstrating their knowledge of STEM.  This course has all of the same course elements as the UGS for training your staff how to run an exciting STEM based adventure. Topics of study for the participants include:  Physics, biology, health science, chemistry, scientific method, and forensic science. Watch your participants of all ages see STEM as an exciting adventure when they learn special skills they need for defeating the villains and solving the mystery.


And finally, if your organization prefers a nonviolent conflict role-play style that doesn’t involve foam weapons or NERF blasters, then our Nonviolent Conflict System (NCS) is the perfect add-on to the UGS. This course takes your staff through how to integrate social emotional learning (SEL) skills such as the science of psychology, negotiation, brokering, moderating, and conflict resolution instead of (or in addition to) the combat skills listed in the UGS system.  As a bonus, the NCS also includes a full STEM Guild Hall (NCS Version) add-on that allows your participants to learn these specific skills as a way to “power up” and improve their chances of success in the adventure.  There is no better way to teach SEL than in an exciting adventure where the participants are the heroes trying to save the day.



$395/yr for UGS main rules includes 1 hour of zoom consulting

Each instructor access: $19/person after first one 

SPECIAL:  $595/yr for package deal of all 3 UGS systems: UGS 2.0 main rules, UGS STEM Guild Hall, UGS Nonviolent Conflict System, and your choice of one Online Birthday Party. Includes 3 hours of zoom consulting and up to 10 client leads a year if no higher license in your area.  ALSO: Sport Sword foam sword training module for free with this package!  

Each instructor has access to all of the above programs: $29/person after the first one.  


Premium License
  1. Includes the following:
    1. Up to 100 client leads a year if no higher license in your area
    2. Access to ALL UGS online training programs and modules for up to 10 staff 
    3. Use of USPTO Wizards & Warriors® and Sport Sword® trademarks 
    4. Marketing assets:
      • Listing on our website
      • Premium YouTube videos 
      • Premium photos 
      • Premium digital brochures
      • Premium digital flyers 
      • Premium digital banners 
      • Premium digital mailers 
      • Premium social media assets, etc 
    5. Monthly online mentoring meetings
    6. Optional In-Person staff training
    7. Additional staff training materials
    8. Additional curriculum
    9. Additional plots/storylines
    10. Event templates
    11. Recommended resources
    12. Press interviews
    13. Partnership opportunities on grants
    14. Partnership opportunities on corporate contracts
    15. Mentions in press releases
    16. Paid playtesting  

Fee: Contact us for pricing.

Preferred Partner

All of the above as well as:

    1. Up to 350 leads a year for the following:
      • Students for classes
      • Campers for summer camp
      • Birthday Parties
      • Events held at your location or clients location
      • Recreation department course requests
      • Demonstration requests
      • Reporter inquiries and co-authoring articles
      • Research inquiries
    2. Employment listings for your program staffing (up to 10 leads a year)
      • Year round
      • Seasonal
    3. Protected radius – no other UGS programs will receive leads or a Preferred status in your area
    4. Weekly online mentoring meetings and optional in-person training
    5. Partnership opportunities on federal contracts as subcontractor
    6. Shared byline in trade publications
    7. Online training for up to 15 staff plus 10 more for seasonal May-August
    8. Assistance in contract negotiations, government certifications, and other business related processes
    9. Shared revenue for co-created online courses
    10. Monthly partner referral income for referred licensees

Fee: Contact us for pricing.

Universal Game System - what is it and how do you run it? Learn to run exciting roleplaying games for in-person and online events.

STEM Guild Hall that teaches STEM for the Universal Game Roleplaying System

Nonviolent Conflict System - add-on that teaches negotiation skills for the Universal Game Roleplaying System

Examples of themed Universal Game System camps:

Why should you be interested in these programs?

  • The planning and development is done for you
  • You don’t have to teach your staff – the course does that for you
  • Lean on our expertise – tested and refined by dozens of experts since 1999
  • Make education exciting with engaging stories and memorable interactions
  • Increase retention of your clients with online events in between seasons or sessions – no matter their location
  • Roleplaying can be adapted and integrated into just about any activity or lesson 

Find out more about our 2 other types of programs:

The Complete STEM Adventures are self contained courses that are quick to implement and designate which age range the program is designed for. These courses are geared towards teachers and counselors who want to spend minimal time learning.

The Online Birthday Parties are self contained courses that teach you how to run a fun and collaborative online adventure geared towards ages 8-11. Almost everything you need is provided including marketing materials, training, and digital assets.  You just need a laptop with internet access, camera and microphone, zoom, and of course, your heroes!

What’s being said about us…

“Simply put, Guard Up changed my life. From the first moment I stepped into the ‘tavern,’ to my last glimpse of the camp before I left, I was totally engulfed in the story, characters, and experience.” – Saul Rosenthal

“What some might dismiss as a geeky alternative to more traditional camps, where sports and art classes rule, is actually a precious, even irreplaceable resource to the population it serves… these kids get to engage in more physically challenging and socially interactive versions of the [computer] games they already love. For many, the excitement comes from playing characters of their own creation in a multilayered adventure story their actions help shape. For others, it’s about sword fighting. But everyone seems to agree on the value – and fun – of turning video-game materials into real-life play,” – The Boston Globe

“The affordance to play in a responsive environment is key to engaging players in video games, but [Guardian Adventures] exports the method off the screen and into the real world. Immersive narratives and embodied actions combine to engage players in a range of learning. This illustrates how an informal, story-driven environment can motivate students to take ownership of their learning. Research supports the approach,” – NPR

“What (Guardian Adventures has) accomplished, seems to me, is to have done what Campbell would want us to with his work: synthesize it into our own work which puts us in service to our passion to the fulfillment of not only ourselves, but to the larger community,” – Joseph Campbell Foundation

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