Episode 95: Three men and a baby

Hosts: Todd, Lexx, Scott, JohnKelly

Banter: Tom Selleck was in my stable, Reek was birthed, gilgamesh is an early story about the human condition

What did we play: (7:15)
Todd: Descent, Star Trek Expeditions, Lord of the Rings Card Game, Dresden RPG
Scott: Yggdrasil, Battletech
JohnKelly: Call of Cthulhu Masks of Nyarlethotep,

Main topic: The Human Condition (18:05)
Wikipedia definition (18:30)
An intense and overbearing fear of death (19:55)
Todd’s first explorative experience (23:30)
Stolen inspiration: Scott’s buddhist character (26:10)
Rob and Megan: players who explore via characters (27:30)
Lexx: Playing up realism or the other (28:15)
Diatribe against 300 (29:20)
Dragon Age racism (30:20)
Do you set out to explore the human condition? (33:20)
Layer and sublayer (35:00)
Story and meaning (36:10)
Genre games provide more direction toward meaning (Battlestar Galactica, Usagi Yojimbo) (39:05)
A dearth of positive things in gaming (love, hope, friendship) (40:20)
Massaging the topic: back to good and bad game (44:00)
Reality TV is the fascination with cruelty (46:00)
When it’s not: overcoming the challenges (48:00)
Refusal to submit (49:30)
Positive relationships, metagaming, and life (50:25)
When fantasies come out (53:15)
Learning things about others by accident (54:10)

Rants (57:35)
Lexx: We put up with much worse things in gaming than anywhere else. Why?
JohnKelly: My show is about post-rapture survival
Scott: If your game store offers open gaming, buy

from that store.
Todd: Didn’t have one, so we rant about him instead.

New Fiasco Playset, made by Megan and JohnKelly

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2011 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 91: Using your learnin'

Hosts: JohnKelly, Scott, Rob, Todd, Megan

The problem with playing people who you aren’t is that you still keep being who you are. Slapbadger the thief likely doesn’t know much about carpentry, but you probably took that class in high school as an excuse to get out of real work, and here you are

having to make a table to put all your filthy loot on. In this episode we talk about how outside knowledge plays out in games, how it is brought in to game well as well as poorly.

Banter: Megan’s special moment at Target, kids with big age range, heroin addiction, It’s ok if it’s one of the Oakland Raiders,

What did we play: (7:50)
Megan: Sorcerer, Magic, playing old school D&D, Hansa Teutonica, Priests of Ra
Todd: Sorcerer, Hansa Teutonica, Priests of Ra, Vampire, Dresden Files
Rob: Sorceror
JohnKelly: Doesn’t game
Scott: Troyes, Hansa Teutonica, Priests of Ra

Ode to Joy and the trouble with music in game, Charles gets thrown under the bus, our Sorcerer game is very meth heavy.

Main topic: Using your learning’ (17:30)
Rob running Unhallowed Metropolis: Influences and homework (19:00)
Basing historical characters on historical people (21:40)
Pictures and flickr Hivemind (23:00)
Mashing characters together to make your own (25:35)
Being smart despite your character (27:45)
Outside knowledge grinds the game to a halt (32:00)
Maintaining internal consistency, and how it makes us mad in popular culture (38:45)
When you know you’re going to screw it up (48:30)
Playing to what excites you: Todd and his sociology (49:30)

Rants (54:05)
JohnKelly: SushiKebab Joe is the best Jank Cast listener ever.
Rob: Bring back Leisure Suit Larry.
Scott: Calling yourself “The Face of” means you should edit yourself.
Megan: Belmont Burlesque is killing it’s own child. Kinda weird.
Todd: Dungeon Raid has stolen my girl. And then me.

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2011 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 90: Replayability

Hosts: JohnKelly, Timo, Megan, Scott

Replayability is a thing that affects games of many different genres: boardgames, cardgames, rpg’s. We talk about what makes a game, module, or scenario fun to replay.

Banter: Timos hands are clean, Lady Blackbird actual play and the problems with smokers, Watto, the Plinkett reviews and the Podge Cast dudes, our names, Doom comes from the rest room, Cinco de Megan, Mother’s day, broadway musicals, egg roll cookies, we should have podfaded, Clyde and Theory from the Closet.

What did we play: (9:50)
JohnKelly: Didn’t play jack
Megan: 1st Ad&D, lots of Magic,, Sorcerer
Timo: Sorcerer, Mansions of Madness, Inspectres, Lady Blackbird, Settlers of Catan
Scott: Wanted to play CthulhuTech, but didn’t get to. Otherwise, boardgames.

Megan hates Settlers, Family Business (Scott agrees with that one). The dead air section (“Todd… Todd!”). Forge Midwest was pretty damned awesome, Mansions of madness has some lame scenarios. The

bullet train to St Louis. Madison is pretty awesome. Next up: Origins! The Gencon countdown and Megan’s shows. Let the Right One In is AMAZING.

Main topic: Replay value in games (24:00)
What makes great replay value (24:10)
Most modules for traditional games have no replay value. Example: Keep on the Borderlands (24:55)
Tomb of horrors is a fun “Fuck you” (27:00)
Lexx lays down some Gygaxian knowledge (28:20)
John Kelly: do gamiest games/modules have less replay value (misconstrues Burning Wheel)?(29:00)
Secrets kill replayability: are some genres more repayable than others? (30:00)
Challenge as replay: World of Warcraft, war-games, Co-operative games (31:15)
Scenario based and cooperative board games, RP’ing your character increases replay (32:15)
boardgames add variation in the gameplay for replay (33:45)
injecting replaybility to a module/game. Zombie Cinema (36:30)
Scenarios have breadth and depth (level of detail vs how much is plotted out) (38:05)
That’s not one JohnKelly asked. He wants to know how you make a module interesting for someone who’s played it before (41:20)
What if you enlist the player who’s played before to help you? Are you breaking social contract? (42:40)
Timo has friendship bracelets with his characters (46:50)
So what we’re saying is it’s about secrets. How many secrets do the players know the answer to? (47:15)
Also: know your audience. And give them drugs (49:55)

Rants (50:52)
Scott: Scot hasn’t role played in a long time. His opinion is suspect.
Megan: Bathe, kids.
Timo: Iron Man 2.
JohnKelly: What’s up with Doctor Who in ‘Merica?

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2011 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 86: The Loooooooooooooooooooove Cast

The Love Cast is a little old place where we can get together.

Love Cast, baby.

Hosts: Cass, Courtney, Famous Game Designer Majdi Badri, JOHNKELLY, Todd


Bumper: Chair in your pocket/giant bird

Banter: Chair in your pocket, cont.  JohnKelly doesn’t get a free donut.  Todd is a liar and JohnKelly is a drunk.  Majdi bought Clue.  Star Wars Guess Who.  Star Wars 3D.  Captain EO/Courtney Likes Disney/Disney Hall in 3D/Closet Adventures (we’re on a roll!).   Courtney doesn’t want to be here and thinks Majdi and JohnKelly are assholes (Todd is making this up).   Majdi’s ladyfriend may or may not exist.  Majdi is THE INFEKTOR!  Famous Game Designer Majdi Badri’s next game will be “Dr. Touchem.”  Max Cadwell.  Peter is confused.  Courtney wonders why Courtney has a microphone.  Toddworth.

What did we play this week?
JohnKelly: Nothing, because Matt is stupid.
Famous Game Designer Majdi Badri: Pathfinder
Todd: Sorcerer and Vampire
Courtney: Battleheart
Cass: Nothing (but D&D is coming up)

Topic: Gaming with significant others.

How has Famous Game Designer Majdi Badri tricked his ladyfriends into gaming?
Courtney likes to levelgrind so JohnKelly suggests 316.
Make your significant other comfortable if you want them to game with you.
A spoonful of booze makes the game go down.
Magic + Logic = A whole different game.
Collaborative boardgames.
Nerdy media = nerdy gamers.
Forbidden Island, the game to sucker your significant other into gaming with.
Problems with gaming with a significant other: myth or reality?
Rants:
Courtney and Todd: Your friends suddenly turn conservative when you get old/No grades = no grammar.
JOHNKELLY: Columbia College, Under the Bus.
Cass: Dunkin Donuts doesn’t have turkey sausage, but says it does.  Jerks.
Majdi: No Angry Birds in the dark.

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2011 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com. Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 85: The Fast and the Furious: Rules Drift!

Hosts: JohnKelly, Megan, Scott, Timo, Todd

Today, in response to the Walking Eye’s recent episode on rules drifting, we tackle the subject. I won’t say we did it better, but our cast definitely had 100% more of Scott’s mustache.

Bumper: Timo. What a maroon.

Banter: Timo is late. Megan’s show. Todd gets internet yelled at. Super Sweet 16 sucks. Bobcat Godthwait will kill those girls in a movie. Birthdays. We make fun of Timo more. JohnKelly does a surprisingly good impression of him. Can we edit Timo into the cast from older casts? Scott’s mustache of power (aka, the SLEAZSTACHE).

What did we play?
Megan: Magic, Lady Blackbird, Nightfall
JohnKelly: Fiasco (but wrong)
Scott: Battletech
Todd: Lady Blackbird, Serenity
Timo: Lady Blackbird

Topic: Topic, topic, topic, topic, topic. Where were we? Oh yeah. Rules and house rules. We are in dialogue with the Walking Eye who did a convo on drifting the rules with Ryan Macklin, John Wick, the awesomely named Eddy Webb,

and our arch-nemesis WEIIIIIIIIISEEEEEEERRRR!

What is a rule? Mechanics? Advice? Social contract? All three? Anything in the book, including “the” and “and” is a rule. Also- don’t be a dick.
You have drifted the rules, which is 100% okay, if you change the setting.
We get a little glimpse into JohnKelly’s psyche.
The Golden Rule- Change what you want.
Todd didn’t know that West Side Story is based on Romeo and Juliet. But he did. He’s lying.
No one seems to care if people drift rules. Does everyone do it?
Does it make a difference if you’re playing a “trad game” or an “indie game”? Why drift the rules in Lady Blackbird, for example?
Shouldn’t you give them game a try the way it is?
Todd wants to know if a game is broken.
JohnKelly thinks you can’t mess up Call of Cthulhu.
What can you mess up?
Does anyone run D&D with the rules totally straight?
It’s always combat that gets drifted, isn’t it?
Slowing the game down. Is it momentum or time we’re worried about?
Narrative and mechanics coming together, for example, Dogs in the Vineyard. If you can drift the rules and not affect the narrative at all, what does this mean?
Role-playing is, in effect, a drift.
Transparency.
Why wouldn’t anyone change the grapple rules?
To demonstrate this, Scott grapples JohnKelly.
Run it as right as you can, first, then change it.
Rules are there for a reason.
If you’re drifting the rules of a game, there’s probably a different game you can play that would do what you want it to do. Go buy it.
Two comes after one.

Rants:
Megan: Magic! Know your audience.
Timo got rid of his TV for free. What’s wrong with America?
JohnKelly: Gary Gygax tells you what to do from the afterlife.
Todd: Fuck Terry Jones. Seriously.
Scott: Condolences to Jolly Blackburn’s family. See below.

Auction for Jolly’s Family
Cosplay for a Cause at Pressure!

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2011 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com. Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 81: The Work-Game Balance

Hosts: Megan, Todd, Reek, JohnKelly

In this episode, we discuss how to manage your work/gaming balance. And Megan is tired. Very, very tired.

Show Notes:
Banter: The worst show ever. LOOK AT MY TEXT!!! OH MY GOD!!!! We’re tired. Todd’s ladyfriend’s parents are in town and he’s too embarrassed to introduce them to the people on the cast. The other “Megan Pedersen” gets thrown under the bus.

What Games Did We Play? (10:10): We finished up Godlike. The less we used the mechanic, the better it was. Greg Stolze agrees, interestingly enough.

12:30- THE SNEEZE!

The other Spider Man Musical.

Kickstarter.com is a thing.

The Robocop Statue.

In the future… there will be Huck Finn.

Main Topic: Work/Game balance (19:00)
Todd Doesn’t have time to do high prep GMing anymore. Neither does JohnKelly (so he just doesn’t GM).
Work never ends for most of us so we have to schedule fun around work.
We almost never miss the weekly game, even when we’re busy.
Reek’s life. Beefquest.
Tangent: Steven Tyler sucks hard.
JohnKelly wants to do one game a week, at least.
Gaming to escape? Gaming as a creative outlet? Do you want to get something out of gaming that you don’t get out of work?
Megan is highbrow.
What does “escapist” mean? Are we really trying to “escape” from work?
“Gaming with Strangers.”

Rants! (51:30)
Todd: A Public Service Announcement
Megan: Bad student interview
Reek: All work and

no play makes Reek a something something
JohnKelly- Drive Angry (what Todd’s friend Marnie calls “NIXSPLOITATION!”). Nicolas Cage flips his shit!

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2010 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com. Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 78: World building

Hosts: JOHNKELLY, Lexx, Scott, Majdi, Timo

We sit down to mock each other over the topic of world creation, pregenerated versus emergent worlds, and a host of topics.

Banter: Starro‘s eye. Lexx cheats at Foursquare and made his brothers southern, Majdi is flakeish (and quiet), Oscar the Grouch and Winger, Gwar created 40K, Scenes from the Multiverse.

What we played this week (4:30)
Scott: L5R
Timo: Godlike and Civilization Boardgame
Majdi: Dread, Pathfinder
Lexx: AD&D 2
JOHNKELLY: 3.5

Majdi’s Furry Fantasies and Lexx’s chest hair, the horrible methane smell

Main topic: World Building (7:20)
What prompts you to build a world? (7:50)
Idea or character first (9:10)
Game design and how well defined the world is (11:50)
No such thing as a worldless game (13:50)
Themes are not the same as a world (14:50)
Opportunities with pre-created worlds (15:50)
The significance of characters in the world (17:30)
Theme driven world creation (18:45)
Prep: what role does it take, and how does it work? (20:15)
Getting the setting right matters (25:00)
Having an idea and making it work with D&D (28:00)
Starting from inspiration (29:40)
Design a game from a seed (31:52)
Length of the game (33:53)
Characters and change (36:00)
Genre smashing (37:15)
The balance between predefined and character created: getting good group think (39:08)

Rants (44:27)
Lexx: Sports: THIS is what offends you?
Majdi: Damn you, destructive testers, damn you to heck!
JOHNKELLY: Theatre people should read plays
Scott: Spray-on Tans. No wait, flaky gamers.
Timo: Cell phones are a bunch of bullshit because LEXX WON’T LET ME BE MAYOR.

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2010 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 74: Jankest Stories Ever

Hosts: Megan, Timo, Scott, John Kelly, Chris Biddle

With a guest appearance by Chris Biddle of Sickest Fucking Stories Ever we decided to tell nasty stories about gaming, or really about everything and anything that amused us. We tell funny stories for the amusement of all, but mostly for the amusement of ourselves.

Obviously, this is not one of our more serious casts. We’ll be back to the pompousness next episode.

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2010 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at

jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 72: Janksgiving for all.

Hosts: Megan, Timo, Todd, JohnKelly

Hello all you mad listening fools. This weeks podcast is filled with irreverent humour and madness, plus some occasionally begrudging thanks and good cheer. As such, no show notes, just enjoy the chaos.

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2010 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.

Episode 70: International Gaming

Hosts: Megan, JohnKelly, Todd, Rob, Scott

Banter: Playing our fiasco, Remember Tommorrow and GMful play, respecting and welcoming other players, hive mind gaming (01:15)

Main topic: International Gaming (11:15)
Welcome back Scott
John Kelly is no longer a gamer. True story. (11:50)
Todd’s ladyfriend is shocked (shocked!) by the Illinois southerners (14:10)
There’s nothing on cross-cultural gaming on the webs (14:45)
Lingual segregation (17:45)
The Europeans love the Cthulhu (19:50)
The italian translations (Janus and Lucca Games) (20:35)
In which the terrible truth about Rob comes out (21:15)
Gaming in Canada is not so different. Except the Quebecquois (22:45)
le grog (25:50)
International game exhange? (28:40)
Gaming in China (the Chinese do play Go, by the way. They call it Weiqi) (29:30)
How does european style fantasy translate to Chinese culture? (32:00)
What resources are available (34:00)
Couldn’t really find complex chinese games (35:50)
The Americas vs the Brits (37:35)
Leisure games, Simon Washbourne, Umlaut (39:40)
Are we just missing the cultures? Tell us! (44:10)
The chinese experience (48:35)
Die Shwarze Auge, Ratten!, John Sinclair: Geisterjager (50:00)
Joy box games in china (53:30)
Birthdays in restaurants (Hooters in china, Boy/girl, Ed debevics, the wiener circle) (54:00)
Relating the segue back to the topic (1:00:15)
Projeckt Kopfkino (in which Todd goes “squeeee!”) (01:02:00)

Rants (01:04:05)

Todd: I hate Russia for your cool Fallout Larp
Rob: Visa’s are fucking annoying, America. Can’t I just stay?
Scott: Culinary adventures in China: The beauty soup is made from frog genitals and served in a fruit!
Megan: Crossed the line
JohnKelly: Netflix streaming is hot shit, and you should see: Dr Who, Battelstar Galactica, Being Human, IT Crowd, Firefly, Buffy, Angel, Torchwood, BBC Sherlock Holmes.

Board Game Geek is good for finding gaming groups (01:12:25)

Scott’s interview with Vivian and tik (01:13:30)
How were you introduced to european style gaming? (01:14:45)
Strategy and Abstract games for tik, big dice pools for Vivian (01:15:50)
Translating games (01:16:45)
Costs of games, buying from Hong Kong or Online, local stores (01:18:10)
The gaming club, it’s members and the tea house (01:19:00)
Other games: cards, miniatures, RPG’s (01:23:00)
tiks own game design (01:24:23)

You have been listening to The Jank Cast, copyright 2010 under the creative commons license. You can find out more about us at jankcast.com. All the music in the show is from the song, “Jank is a Dork Word” written and recorded by Todd and is used with his permission. You can send comments and feedback to feedback@jankcast.com Again, we are sponsored by Chicagoland Games, and this is JOHNKELLY reminding you to support your local gaming store. Now go out and roll some dice.