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 88: Lexx and Todd's Excellent Adventure!

Hosts: Lexx and Todd

For this episode, we were SUPPOSED to talk about character death with a full cast, but some people cancelled (coughMajdicough) and other people didn’t show up (coughJohnKellycough). At first, Lexx and Todd said “maybe we should just call it.” Then they looked deep into each others eyes in the most manly of ways and realized that true heroes, real heroes, carry on no matter what. Like a couple of Vikings they went into battle, recording a full cast with just the two of them. Bards will sing of this heroic tale for generations, calling it “the greatest accomplishment ever by two humans.”

Too much? Yeah. Okay. Mostly it’s just Lexx and me shooting the shit about the current games we’re playing. If that sounds interesting to you, listen and enjoy, if it doesn’t, we’ll be back next week with a full cast episode.

One show note: The Same Page Tool which we were recommended to by our friends and compadres over at The Walking Eye.

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 87: Designering

Hosts: Majdi, Timo, Lexx, Joe, Jordan

Capitalizing on the relentless earth-shattering fame of game designer Majdi we talk with him and Joe and Jordan of Level Zero about the games they are working on, as well as some of the processes of developer.

Banter: Rainforest Cafe, designing for suicide, the bottom of the foon change, the myr (amir)? Advertising on magic cards. Timo is very appropriately professional

Main topic: Design (5:20)
Lexx and Timo are just critics: These guys actually make things (bullshit) (5:40)
Joe and Jordan and Level zero games: Node, netgain (6:20)
Transmedia incorporation (10:10)
Octodad: interfacing with the game is the game (14:40)
The future of Octodad: more levels, a steam game, kinecto-dad (18:15)
What surprised you about developing a game (21:12)
Joe: All the communication you won’t be doing (21:35)
Large teams and a bug report system (22:30)
Jordan: You can’t make all of your ideas (Kill your babies) (24:15)
Communicating to the players (25:30)
The game manual (29:20)
What is the fun of the game? (30:30)
the language of games (31:00)
Cheese moves and exploits (34:30)
Octo-Mac (37:15)
Playtesting across different types of games (39:10)
released unfinished (43:30)
Game as entertainment, game as income (45:45)

Rants (52:00)
Joe: A Story is not a game
Jordan: Fuck games of “kill the leader,” especially munchkin
Majdi: I love playtesters. Really I do. Seriously.
Timo: You watch your step, Weiser.

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 84: Anthropomorphic Gaming (aka The Janksters Get Furry!)

We talk about anthropomorphic gaming, i.e. playing non-humans. Lexx and Scott say I’m going to link a bunch of stuff in the show notes, but there’s no way I’m doing a google search for “squid chair” to link it. My gmail adds would be CRAZY after that.

Hosts: Ben, Lexx, Megan, Rob, Scott

Show notes:

Bumper: Canadians.

Banter: Putting unpleasantness behind us. SuckerPunch is dumb, but pretty. Feed your head! I should sue SuckerPunch. Sounds good to me. Squids. Autotuning. Happy birthday Nathan Fillion.

Topic: Anthropomorphic gaming. Like, serious non-humans.

Question one: Sex. Obviously.
Sentient free willed beings that want GOOOOOOOOLD!!!!!
Archetypes or arbitrary types? Are non-human characters just a focus on one aspect of humanity?
We’re still dealing with things that are mostly human.
Human/animal hybrids.
Isn’t this just what roleplaying is?
What’s interesting about this: we can explore the dualism of humanity. Rational/animal.
Was Whitewolf was going for this conflict in Werewolf?
Rob likes to play characters that have an animalistic side because he likes to role-play something that isn’t him.
Dawg the RPG: Canine Compulsion rules.
Lexx is rigid. Ben is open to the secrets of the universe.
Watership Down, the cartoon.
“A strange desire for carrots and sex, not necessarily in that order.”
Rob puts his book learnin’ to good use: KAFKA!
JANK CAST: MAKIN’ IT UP!
Sorcerer = What Kafka could be.
The danger of playing an alienated character.
Act out because you have an interesting character, not because you want to be transgressive for the sake of transgression.
The sociology of animals.
Inevitably, dolphins come up.
Ratten!

Rants:
Ben: Manly commercials think men are stupid and women are harpies. This seems incorrect.
Scott: The circle of death.
Rob: Sykpe group video blew it.
Lexx: Furries.
Megan: Everyone at the fest got the flu.

Also: Megan will perform nerd themed burlesque at GenCon. Woot.

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 83: Comics and Gaming, in honor of C2E2

Hosts: Charles, JOHNKELLY, Scott, Todd

Notes:

(I’m super busy getting ready for a conference, so I don’t have time to add links to all the fun stuff in the show notes. If something sounds cool, you’re going to have to google it!)

Bumper: Fuck Timo, and Fuck That Game Too.

Banter: Todd’s neighbors bring the funk. Scott’s back from China and he brought show and tell! IHOP has fried chicken and waffles. Sweet. Halal KFC leads to CHICKENGEDDON! Sweet Chinese mugs. We’re not sexist here on the Jank Cast. We get our Pocky on. TROLLJERGEN!!! The Windy City Burlesque Fest: Megan brings the boobs to Chicagoland. Coming attractions on the Jank: THE CAST OF THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE BOOBS! Kids these days. Majdi is a celebrity and is, hence, too good for us now.

What did we play?
JK: D&D and Stratego
Scott: Wrath of Ashardalon
Todd: Lady Blackbird, Serenity, Zombie Cinema
Charles: Lady Blackbird, Zombie Cinema, Dresden Files

Main Topic: As part of our Media and Gaming series: COMIC BOOKS!
Scott talks about C2E2
Scott claims that Corey Glover from Living Colour is Danny Glover’s son. He isn’t. But it’s a sweet rumor, so just keep telling everyone he is. Either way, click here for awesomeness.
Scott’s definition of a perfect woman.
What can comic book storytelling teach us about

gaming?
It’s a discrete story.
We’re going to talk about Batman. A lot.
Comic books can give visuals but also text description.
What’s so Civil about War anyway?
They have a very complicated world with lots of characters.
Our Valued Customers
We can use them as inspiration for how to plot a game.
Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud: Aspect to Aspect Storytelling.
The arrangement of panels on a page is a part of storytelling.
Locke and Key
Usagi Yojimbo: Telling a story just with visuals.
Blah Blah Blah: our new game.
Don’t attack Superman’s strengths, attack his weaknesses.
Who is the Villain?
Favorite superhero systems to play. Suggestions:
Godlike/Wild Talents
BASH
Mutants and Masterminds
Capes
Mutant City Blues
Marvel Superheroes
Aberrant
Heroes Unlimited
How do you balance a superhero system? Should you even bother? JohnKelly says maybe. Todd says no, just skip the realism and balance and go right to outcomes.
Todd says “Captain Marvel” but means “Wonderman.”
We complain about some of the superhero posters on the wall of Chicagoland Games.

Rants:
JohnKelly: Have you seen this Majdi?
Scott: Future trains!
Charles: Most positive rant ever.
Todd: Wonder Woman is having a rough time

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 76: Gamers vs Sports Nerds with Scott and Lexx

Hosts: Scott, Lexx

Scott and Lexx take a few minutes of time to talk about sports fans and gamers. They have fiery opinions that are loudly vocalized. LOUDLY. The Cast as a whole is sorting out some scheduling things, so this is a short bit to keep you occupied until we get back to your regularly scheduled.

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 75: Religion and gaming

Hosts: Timo, Scott, Lexx, Todd, Reek

Religion is a serious part of peoples lives. A system of belief and faith is one of the pillars of strength that we rely on to be at peace with our world. So what better than to have some atheists, non-believers, and non-practicers talk about it for an hour as if they have any fucking idea what they’re talking about? Am I right?

We indulge in a discussion of the unknown. Between Lexx and Timo, some offensive things might get said if you are a person of faith. You have been warned.

Banter: Disclaimer, How Timo taught himself not to laugh (and is a giant weepy ball of emo), Community plays D&D, D&D isn’t as nerdy as we think it is, Lexx is worried about the age of the Nerd will end badly, beard beard beard.

Main topic: Religion and Gaming (4:40)
Disclaimer part 2 (5:17)
Atheism as an excuse (Lexx hates intellectual laziness) (7:40)
Do gamers tend to be secular? (8:50)
Gaming when those around you are concerned/upset about it (9:40)
Why gaming gets seen as religiously acceptable (15:00)
Timo gets real offensive despite trying REALLY HARD not to be (he’s just that good) (17:00)
Gaming with a religious/cultural agenda (18:40)
Religion in gaming: Testament, Second Sight (Timo actually meant (Seventh Seal), Dogs in the Vineyard (20:50)
Religion in games as fear (25:05)
Reek says: Fanaticism (26:05)
Clerics without religion: making religion important in a game (27:05)
The absence of complex motivation (Morally Therapeutic Deism) (34:00)
The structure of belief (36:00)
Individuals and the structures (40:00)
PCs and mutual reinforcement (44:25)
This conversation makes for good game (45:11)
Gray games vs Black and White. See also character drama vs adventure (46:30)
Problems with players beliefs in game (50:20)
Belief in imagined space (Timo offensiveness part 2) (51:20)
Culture more than religion: passing all experience through a religious filter (53:15)
Dragons without magic from the Podge Cast vs Star Wars (56:45)
Final points (57:30)

Rants (58:38)
Todd: Fortune Cookie
Timo: Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.
Scott: City folk amaze me
Lexx: Gamer diets
Reek: Bicycles, sobering up, the clothes rack, I want my broom back, Allure magazine, you’ll go deaf like you did. WWJD?

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 73: Futuristic Gaming

Hosts: Todd, Megan, Mike, Lexx, Scott, Timo

We meander on and about the topic of games and gaming set in the future. It takes us a hell of a long time, but we eventually get to the topic. We then lose that topic in time and space, but we get it back eventually. The conversation get’s a little confused and nebulous at times, but we try to make some sense of the topic let alone our own blather.

Banter: Timo has large ears and had a mullet (which leads to more on hair), Blood on the mic, Megan is emasculating us every time, Timo’s sweater has accessory problems, we have a big board now, different measures of distance, the dice roll, rolling behind the screen (and we draw the lines yet again for no reason), why doesn’t anyone want to kick JohnKelly in the nuts, Pro-champion, John Kelly and Elijah, we get compassionate about the homeless, space-hobo’s, new segment: Where did Mike sleep last night (1:02)

Main topic: Futuristic Gaming (16:54)
Futuristic tropes (The prog rock album) (17:15)
Games that start “x time from right now:” Remember Tomorrow, Bliss Stage (19:10)
We degrade back to blather: this time being mean to kids and how bullying helps make people better. (21:50)
Topic returns: talking about class structure through futuristic settings (30:45)
Being able to deal with our societal discomforts via a fictional medium (33:35)
Talking about now by making a particular point stark (Todd is a fictional racist) (36:04)
Ron Edwards Justifiers game (38:50)
Future games from the 80’s are the ones doing well now (Shadowrun, post-apocalyptic settings, blade runner) (39:50)
Established and nostalgic (41:35)
Characteristics of the future as seen from different decades (Star Trek) (43:20)
The future doesn’t last: Bro’s in space (44:44)
Transhumanism: Eugenics onwards (47:05)
Horror is fear of the unknown, Science fiction can be fear of the known (and hope as the counter) (48:50)
Prevalence of “organic == human” (50:05)
Freemarket as a counter example (45:45)
Futuristic games as the future without commentary (53:15)
Game/setting design: asking the question and not answering it (54:25)
We finally get around to explaining what Freemarket actually is (55:10)
What is meant by unanswered questions (we disagree) (58:00)
How this works with defined settings (Shock, Freemarket, Misspent Youth) (01:03:05)
Recent futuristic games: Dark Heresy, Eclipse Phase, Cthulhu tech (01:06:20)
Advancing epochs in game settings (Fireborn, Wild Talents and Godlike), the Trinity Universe (01:07:45)
Psionics (01:09:45)
Sci-fi versus future fantasy (Lexx’s beard) (01:10:28)
Buckets get kicked (01:13:13)
Star Wars as an example (01:14:48)
Why the fuck do we need a definition? (01:17:02)
We try to make a point. I’m not sure we do (01:21:34)

Rants
Scott: Bringing the nephew in to the RPG fold.
Lexx: Delay mechanics are fucking stupid.
Mike: Our modern military is scarily effective.
Megan: Don’t bullshit me, if you don’t want to see my show then just tell me.
Todd: Seriously, Jank Cast, just shut the hell up.
Timo: Just can’t follow Todd up.

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 69: Gaming Obsession

Hosts: Timo, Megan, Lexx

Ok, an apology is neccessary. We’ve been late a couple weeks in a row now, and it’s totally my (being Timo’s) fault. But we’ll be better from hereon in, we promise! But this does mean that some of our things are time shifted by a week. For now, enjoy our latest endeavour (In which we classify our problems).

Banter: The babysitting list, CTA Incidents the halloween version, Robert Evans on Sportscenter, the stores anniversary

Main topic: Gaming obsession (3:20)
Lexx’s job is basically to be an addict (3:20)
Drug dealers should do their own drugs (4:15)
Being a gamer addict can be hard on the monies (5:00)
Dragon hoarding: It’s not need it’s want (07:45)
Transformers segue (08:05)
Childhood behaviour and the saving and packaging thing (10:10)
Is it about the personality and not actually about gaming (12:00)
We invent things to be obsessed about (13:20)
Lexx, APBA, and Finning out (14:10)
Different styles of addiction (16:10)
Is obsession different for gamers? (17:30)
The signs of addiction (19:30)
The list breaks down: Gaming is a social activity (20:50)
Megan’s gaming is humiliating (shyah right) (21:40)
Why is it ok for cat’s and not for people (the kitten limit) (23:00)
Social isolation of a group (26:25)
The character builder thing (and the alternate) (28:05)
Making characters just to make characters (29:50)
Just being focused on some things is not the same as obsession (31:50)
But gaming obsession is a real thing (people, just bathe) (33:45)
Gamers encourage and praise obsessive behaviour (or Lexx just projects) (35:30)
Escapism: can be good, but can be bad (37:10)

Rants (38:45)
Megan: Burlesque performers should be more understanding with their fake blood.
Timo: I need to stop getting punched in the face.
Lexx: Chicagoland Games 2nd anniversary (October 31st)

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.