Episode 110: Gaming as Socialising

Hosts: Timo, Tom, Megan, Todd, Reek

What did we play:
Dogs in the Vineyard: Timo, Todd, Megan
Shapocalypse World: Shadowrun ApoWo hack: Todd, Tom
Escape from the Aliens in Outer Space: Todd, Timo
Mouseguard: Todd, Tom
Fiasco, Zombie Cinema: Megan
Ravenloft: Reek

Main topic: Gaming as Socialising (23:14)
Part of the fun of gaming is not actually the game itself, but the hanging out with friends that it causes. Whether you are friends outside of the game, or get together just to do this

particular thing, or barely know each other, there is a whole realm of interactions that the game is part of, but is not necessarily all about the game. As part of our “Why we game” series we talk about the socializing that goes on around and about the game.

Rants (01:09:00)
Todd: Plugging Hammers of Misfortune (The Grain)
Reek: To the beat up guy on the red line: You didn’t get anything in, just go home.
Timo: I am a hideous leper.
Tom: Stark Trek is way too fucking blase about revolutionary technology.
Megan: When I watch bad reality TV, I’ll do the exact opposite.

Other Links:
Polaris
Game of Thrones
Murderous Ghosts
D&D Encounters
The Colony
Misspent Youth
Sorcerer
Unhallowed Metropolis
Bachannal
Babylon 5
Deep Space 9>
Shock
Human Contact

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 encourage you to get in touch with us via our Facebook page, Spooky Outhouse Forum (it’s a little quiet, but we’d love to get it going again), or on Twitter or Google+. Now go out and roll some dice!

Episode 96: Gamers in Transition

Hosts: Megan, Charles, Timo, Reek

Banter: We do Todd’s shtick without Todd, Pinot!, Lexx was a little Chewie, It’s Megan’s birthday, nihilists aren’t dark enough (in another world the escargot is eating you), $10 will still get you a magic pack, that damnable song, is it a life-drain jackal?.

Charles is leaving (7:40). This is where we sing the praise of Charles. He’s pretty awesome, and we really will miss him.

What did we play: (9:15)
Megan: Star Wars West End, Remember Tomorrow, Crazy MTG decks.
Reek: There is a huge void where gaming was. If no Scott, then China. That said, West End Star Wars
Timo: Remember tomorrow, House on Haunted Hill

Main topic:

Gamers in Transition (17:03)
Looking for a group in Kentucky (17:50)
Networking (19:20)
The fluidity of our group (19:50)
Trad process: Find a group, that’s your group thick and thin. (21.25)
It’s like going on a date (22:50)
When new to a group: jump right in (24:10)
Being welcoming of new people (25.40)
Story games can be a little personal (27:00)
The language thing (27:55)
When you have to play with these people (29:00)
Non-gaming relationships between gamers (30:05)
What happens with the breakup (31:50)
Being able to cherry pick people (32:30)
Social interaction that isn’t just RPG (33:50)
Group looking for people (34:45)
Mike’s first ed game (36:30)
Other organizational structures (38:30)
Jovian Chronicles: when you can’t find interest in your game (41:35)
Transitioning who you’re willing to play with (43:30)
The Audition (44:20)
Passive aggressiveness sucks (46:20)
The Indie Pimping: Dread is great to warm up to people (47:50)

Rants (50:05)
Charles: It sucks to leave Chicago gaming
Megan: It’s kinda odd that a lot of fantasy writers are old men writing preteen fantasy romance things
Timo: Why don’t people in the suburbs realise they live in middle of goddamned nowhere.
Reek went off to pride.

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 82: We're Not Here For the Party

Hosts: Reek, Rob, Timo, Todd

We start out talking about when you’re playing a game where the “party” isn’t a “party,” so to speak. This shifts to a discussion about how system fits into this along with how a balance of character goals vs. group goals shape this. Also: Canada.

Shhhhhhhhnotes:

Bumper: OH CANADA!

Banter: Todd resealed his Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. This makes sense because of, you know, filth. Toilet propaganda: know your system, know yourself. Somehow we get talking about something being broken and RPG karaoke. I have no idea what this is all about. The Jank Cast hasn’t jumped the shark, but we’re definitely Chasin’ Steve. Finnish people have issues with women. Black Metal. Scandinavians hate each other. The Z-axis of comedy.

What we played:
Ticket to Ride
Dixit
Jewish Apples to Apples
Dragon Age II
Serenity

Tangent: Peepsville.

Topic: Games where the characters aren’t a “party.”

Does a game’s mechanics drive your towards party play or non-party play? We say some games do. For example: Fiasco, Shock, and The Mist-Robed Gate drive you away from party play with their conflict/audience mechanics.

Story-telling vs. Task oriented gaming?

Social norms around the table: are you the audience if your not “in scene?”

Human Contact– Coming out soon!

Remember Tomorrow: a task oriented game where you’re probably not a party.

Timo has a threeway with Pluto and Pluto (the dog and the planet, respectively).

Timo doesn’t like Gwenyth Paltrow. Reek doesn’t either, apparently. Why are we mad about Gwenyth Paltrow? Who knows.

The Wire is character driven storygaming.

Does the game need you to have a “balanced party” and shared goals or not? D&D often does. Zombie Cinema? In a Wicked Age? Not so much.

Apocalypse World and creating PC-NPC-PC triangles. Dogs in the Vineyard, too. Vincent Baker is good at this. Reek loves Vincent Baker but doesn’t want to admit it, so he decides he has a new enemy. BAKER!

We discuss definitions of sexuality and Reek attempts to be a gentleman in front of a lady, for a change.

Todd says “rim planet” and all hell breaks loose. It takes Reek two minutes to contain himself.

What do people expect from the game? How do you give it to them?

Canada: The RPG. Rob, painted in blood, chasing people with a machete. NOW THE HUNT BEGINS!

Rules again: what do they let you do as far as attacking someone, talking to someone, etc.

Does a system give you the freedom to do exactly what you want with your character narratively, or are you shackled to realism? Fiasco lets you do whatever you want. Godlike didn’t.

How do you GM a character driven game? In the same way you play a character as a PC.

Lady Blackbird as a great example of a game that lets you decide the fate of your character.

Static relationships vs. dynamic relationships. Is this a result of having an external goal?

Sorcerer: goals that don’t intersect at all. This allows you to create dramatic irony at the table.

We become more convinced this is all about how much the group has a goal which unites them vs. how much the individual characters have conflicting goals.

Party games are fun, rewarding, and you can do awesome character stuff in them. That’s not the issue.

Rants:
Timo: Try a new game, people!
Rob: Interviews suck.
Reek: Carrie.
Todd: Fuck plate tectonics. Also: wait a few minutes before you start making the bad

jokes about tragedy. Assholes.

Donate to the Red Cross by texting REDCROSS to 90999.

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 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 80: Theme

Hosts: Megan, Todd, Reek, Rob, Charles, Timo

Gaming and theme are an interesting thing: It may or may not be a thing that is strongly expressed, desired or even present. But what role it takes in game play and how it affects the game and the players is an interesting topic, and one that we try to address with some breadth and depth. We may or may not succeed: We might just end up punning. It will be upon you to find out.

Word of warning, the quality is a little poorer with this one simply because we did not have our microphones and were using a laptop microphone. Also we eat some delicious delicious food as we cast. Behold, our majesty!

Banter: Themeless writing, we realise we’re bantering, We then turn what we played in to big discussion of creative agenda kind of stuff.

What we played this week (3:50)
Megan: Godlike, Magic:The Gathering, Mansions of Madness
Todd: Arkham Horror, Serenity

Main topic: Theme (21:59)
Vincent Baker’s post on Anyway (22:10)
Misspent Youth has theme, issues, situation (24:10)
Choice leads to theme: preconceived theme a la Darths and Droids (25:50)
Gaming to affirm a theme (28:50)
Character theme or leitmotifs (30:40)
interplay between personal and overarching theme (33:00)
Is it worthwhile to force a common theme? (35:45)
The Wire as an example of changing theme(37:00)
Different medias express theme differently (38:40)
Do players (not characters) have themes? (40:30)
Theme of our Apocalypse World game (43:30)
Looking for theme in gaming is rough (45:40)
So what’s the point of theme in gaming? (48:00)
System working with and against theme (49:30)
Gaming is not a genre (aka Todd throws down some big words) (52:15)
George Polti, gaming as communal storytelling (54:15)
Rob lays down the etymological knowledge (55:35)

Rants (57:00)
Reek: No homo? what the fuck?
Todd: Being asked for autographs is an aweful experience.
Megan: Come up with a signature (Behold the Ravening Maw!), Megan is coming down to Kansas
Rob: I don’t rant, I’m Canadian
Charles and Akure don’t like to rant, but they make awesome hosts
Timo: What’s wrong with my hair? interposed stories about the neighbours sexlife, why isn’t there more bird-of-prey sex?

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 79: Jank Who, or Doctor Jank

Hosts: Scott, Megan, Reek, Todd

In which we discuss Doctor Who and how it may relate to gaming. We’ll do this sort of thing from now on. Spoiler alert: there are spoilers! You’ve been warned.

1:06- Oh yeah? Why don’t you go blog about it?
2:30- Facebook v. Boobs.
4:23- Welcome to the Jank Cast! It’s the Doctor Who cast and JohnKelly didn’t show up, even though it was his idea. We make-a-the-jokes.
5:00- Show might be a little loud because of a store event.
We’ll post the 12 hours of actual play.
5:30- What’d we play? UMLAUT: THE GAME OF METAL!!! How do you play a whole band?
6:55- Min-maxing your band: Raw Black Metal bands are hosed!
10:45- Megan played Magic: the Slouching.
11:10- Serenity. We need to talk. Everyone’s character is too damn libertarian.
12:24- HOORAY FOR PLAYING GAMEZ!!!!!!
12:30- Talking about Doctor Who. Todd whistles the Doctor Who theme. Why does no one stop him? Insert Tardis Noise here. Todd doesn’t.
13:00- Kicking off a new series: nerdy media and what we can learn about gaming from it.
13:40- John Kelly is the voice of a new generation. At least according to his superfan. Shout out to JK’s superfan: what’s up, dude?
14:20- The Doctor Who Roleplaying Game– good gateway game.
15:00- Primeval game? Neat.
15:10- Megan is watching every Doctor Who episode she can from the beginning. Hey, look at all the retconing!
17:25- Consistent World vs. Character Dramady?
18:30- Megan likes the episodes where The Doctor goes to random historical locations.
19:00- Joe doesn’t like Doctor Who because shit ain’t real.
20:40- The Doctor teaches us how to do good character moments.
21:20- Megan don’t like time-travel. In Doctor Who it’s a MacGuffin, though.
23:08- “I’m sorry. I’m so, so sorry.”
24:30- Relationships between aliens and humans: similar, or different? Scott thinks humans are pets. Porno for Pyros agrees. NINETIES FTW!
25:40- Alien morality < human morality. 27:05- How do you use power? 27:20- Humans shouldn't be able to make decisions. 28:28- When you don't get your props it can be romantic. Huh? 29:00- Choices have consequences. 30:05- The Whoniverse is atheist, and thus takes life experiences very seriously. 31:45- Pregnancy in L5R
33:10- Favorite companion? Martha Jones. Obviously.
34:45- Doctor Who villains.

Single minded, non-human logic. Delicious.
41:45- Permanence and consequences. Heavy, man.
43:25- Doctor Who isn’t atheistic, it’s agnostic. Because he’s space Jesus.
46:15- Kids don’t get Doctor Who (because they’re dumb).
47:35- WHERE DOES THE STUFF BLOW UP????!!!?!!?!
48:15- The glory of MAGGOT TWAT!!!

Rants:
Scott is taking Chicago’s bad weather to China.
Megan: in the internet, everyone can hear you scream. And, while we’re at it, what’s up with video games with no light? And water.
Reek: Role playing a non-human (the old people make Noid jokes). Also- Furry Metal Jacket.
Todd: This rant goes out to my grandma. Much love.

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 66: Sexuality in Gaming

Hosts: Todd, Reek, Megan, Majdi, Timo

We finally, FINALLY manage to get this episode out. Sheesh. We go long, but it’s a good conversation. Note: Reek’s mic is a bit wonky at the beginning, but we fix it after a few minutes.

Banter: Break a leg playset, Remember the Wheaton, Recording from the Bowels, House-sitting Scott and the magic slingbox, the Colony (don’t fuck with science), Lexx’s beard must go, Todd is Alan Tudyk and the obsession with facial hair, it doesn’t stink of death down here no more, Todd’s fantasy world and Reeks homosexual power (01:20)

Main Topic: sexuality in gaming (Strong and warm and wild and free) (11:20)
Gender in gaming vs sexuality in gaming (13:00)
Apocalypse world’s character splats (13:45)
S/lay w/me mechanics (14:30)
twosie games (15:55)
asexual or your own sexuality: Ricky the Munchkin (17:30)
Hiding our sexuality (20:00)
Majdi games Twilight (20:50)
relationships in games (22:25)
Sex in Fiasco (25:15)
Playing non-cartoony sex (26:15)
Our sexuality is dangerous/vulnerable part of us (27:20)
Burlesque and being on board for sexuality (28.45)
role-playing out sex, lines and veils (31:05)
Libidinal Economy (32:00)
Sex and intimacy (33:50)
Non-sexual intimacy in Unhallowed Metropolis (36:30)
the sexy chinese android assassin and the sex that Enzo didn’t have (38:00)
Sexual defense mechanisms are OK (41:00)
Getting to know your groups (42:00)
Sexuality in LARP, the Majdi experience(42:35)
Sexuality of villains (Randall Flag in The Stand (45:30)
Reek leaves (53:00)
Knowing Rob: even when you trust someone it doesn’t mean intimacy is easy (53:30)
It’s dumb to not RP sexuality (Kalevala as an example) (55:15)
Gaming as fun escape (57:15)
Meisner: fight or fuck (58:30)
Party play works against sexuality (1:00:00)
People against AW sex moves (1:01:20)
Sex mechanics good and bad (1:03:30)
twosie games allow exploring one relationship (1:07:45)
Kagematsu (1:10:00)

Rants (1:17:35)
Todd: The world is laughing at us all.
Majdi: Chicago likes to trick us
Timo: Taking it in the ass with a Chevy Trailblazer.
Megan: I get hit on as a gamer, but not as a burlesque performer. Wtf?

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 65: RPG Slumber Party

Episode 65: RPG slumber party
Hosts: JOHNKELLY, Timo, Reek, Megan, an occasional JP

In one of our best(sic) episodes ever, we all turn up exhausted and hung over and decide to answer slumber party-esque questions about RP. Truly, it is a magical event that will leave you all agape at our wonderous and entertaining dialogue. Thrill at “What RP would you bring to a desert planet!” Gasp in horror as we answer “Which celebrity would you game with!”

Show notes to follow when time permits.

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.

Review Episode 4: Shocked Bashful

Review Episode 4: Shocked Bashful
Hosts: Megan, Scott, Timo, Todd, Reek

Banter: What we did last night, Happy Undeath Day Gary Gygax, Reek’s delicious delicious energy, GMless Game day: Fiasco, Zombie Cinema, Shab-Al-Hiri Roach (0:56)

Review: Shock by Joshua AC Newman (5:00)
What is a Shock: Immortality through cloning (6:00)
Source material/Similarities for our game: Battlestar Galactica, Free Market, Borderlands, Iain M Banks, David Brin‘s Kiln People (7:00)
The issues: Ageing, Reproduction, Meaning & Technology of Cloning (8:45)
Minutiae (10:20)
Ownership and Story Elements (12:00)
Protagonist & Antagonist (13:45)
Fiasco, Shab-al-Hiri and Shock rules spectrum (16:30)
party/player dynamic: short stories or vignettes (Sliding Doors, Run Lola Run) (17:52)
Audience helps balance/curb behaviour (20:00)
Timo’s Character: ladies of the world, cringe (21:15)
Conflict mechanics overview (22:40)
Reeks Character: the many deaths of Granthor Debourd (conflict resolution example; Oldboy) (26:20)
Game length: Antagonist credits, dice pools, new shocks (30:00)
Winning & losing: Story goals (31:25)
Metagaming and scene framing (32:55)
Winning and losing revisited (34:25)
Shock is about the issues, not the characters (Blade Runner, Kiln People, Glory Season) (35:25)
Timo’s character revisited: why what happened, happened (38:45)

Review: BASH by Chris Rutkowsky (39:45)
Storytell, GM, DM? (40:00)
Choosing the system for a super hero games (Ex Machina, new run of Batwoman) (41:00)
Super hero games are super crunchy (Wild Talents) (41:28)
Character stats and powers (42:50)
Dice mechanics and super-scaling (43:50)
Window dressing the rules; emulating a comic book (47:10)
Flaws and power advancement (48:50)
Hero die (49:45)
Meeting the needs of super hero story gamers: the rules just disappeared (51:15)
Villain points, villain dice and uber heroes (54:40)
Fun things from the game (56:50)

Announcements:
Jank cast party at Gencon (59:55)
Congratulations Ben and Sylvana (1:00:40)
Jankcast pimping (1:01:20)