Fear the Boot, RPG Podcast
Summary: Fear the Boot is an irreverent, round table discussion of tabletop role playing games. In this weekly show we debate game-related issues, offer advice for improving your game, and poke fun at the hobby. Our cast changes a little from show to show, but we always assemble a group of dynamic individuals with divergent views, guaranteeing you will hear several perspectives on everything we discuss.
* (1:08) This year we'll be attending San Diego Comic Con instead of Gen Con. However, there may still be some FtB community-sponsored events at Gen Con. Expect details on the activities at both conventions soon! * (1:46) John is a bad, bad man. Adding romance to a game while also dealing with its consequences. * (16:18) Stepping back when you're too busy to GM. Our temporary switch from Battletech to Dresden. Non-consensual changes to character -- crossing the "golden box". * (30:40) Questions to contemplate prior to the game. Making sure there's a common understanding about certain elements such as lethality, plot direction, and the usefulness of various archetypes. Hosts: Beth, Dan, John, Julia
* (0:30) Fear the Boot sans Dan. Pat makes me proud by his treatment of Chris. * (5:17) Some love for the Darker Days (http://darkerdays2.podbean.com/) podcast. * (6:13) Free RPG Day coming up on this Saturday, June 16th. * (8:53) The lessons learned from a nearly-dead online game. Setup time, scheduling, and social awkwardness. * (24:30) Some shout-outs from Fear the Con V. * (27:55) Allowing your PCs -- or the enemies -- to quit the field during a roleplaying game, whether through retreat, surrender, capture, or truce. Why it so rarely happens. How to make it feel like an option, and the depth it can add to a game when handled properly. Hosts: Chris, Johann, Karla, Pat, Wayne
FAIR WARNING: The first part of this episode is a bit crass. If you're offended by that sort of thing, just skip forward to the 18 minute mark and begin listening there. * (0:30) Welcoming guest hosts, Chris Mais and Julia. Julia's struggles as a gaming girl. Chris Mais proves he can out...whatever...Chris Hussey. A discussion about cosplay, including the costumes Julia has done and the one Dan wants to do. * (17:53) Gaming with a very large group of players. The largest group we've each been in and how they were formed. * (22:28) The problems large groups can create for the Game Master, including a large audience to entertain, numerous interactions to work out, and the amount of data to track. * (28:01) The problems players have to contend with. Too many leaders, cliques, character overlap, and simple boredom. The diminishing role of NPCs. * (43:40) Possible solutions to make an unwieldy gaming group work. Hosts: Chris M., Dan, John, Julia, Pat
Just to make up for how late we released episode 200!
* (0:40) Welcoming Monte Cook (http://www.montecook.com). His first RPG book and the story of how he broke into the industry 24 years ago. How he made it to D&D and what happened to the Marvel stuff he wrote along the way. * (8:36) The culture of TSR during its "bloat" and decline. How the focus of management affected what was being written. * (11:40) Dan suddenly understands where Ptolus came from. * (13:27) Monte's transition from TSR to Wizards of the Coast to Malhavoc Press (http://www.montecook.com/cgi-bin/page.cgi?malhavoc). Along the way he also published a non-fiction book, The Skeptic's Guide to Conspiracies (http://www.amazon.com/Skeptics-Guide-Conspiracies-Assassination-Controversial/dp/B0058M7TWC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1338419163&sr=8-1). The Bilderberg Group (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bilderberg_group) becomes the Harbor Group, and how to work conspiracies into your own game! * (16:51) Monte's take on the OGL and the sorts of books it's produced. * (20:26) His own gaming group and what they run. House-ruling his own material. Starting games inside the companies that made those very titles. * (29:06) How to reference D&D without violating copyright or trademark law. * (31:17) Monte's thoughts on the development of Pathfinder and how its rules were shaped. * (34:16) The projects he's working on now, the future of Malhavoc, and the brand power of his own name. * (39:09) DriveThruRPG, DRM, and Fear the Boot versus Wikipedia. Oofty Goofty (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oofty_Goofty) climbing the Dark Tower (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Dark_Tower_(series)), and Monte Cook inventing the clementine orange (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clementine). * (44:50) What's the best class in 3e? (Editor's Note: I can't believe we went there, even tongue in cheek.) The viability of bards. The lost d12 and how it led to the barbarian. * (51:32) Monte settles a bet for one of our Twitter followers. Hosts: Chad, Dan, Johann, John Guests: Monte Cook
* (0:00) Don't worry. We'll stick with podcasting. * (2:07) May 5th? Wow, I'm behind on getting these episodes out. But for those of you that didn't make it, welcome to Fear the Con V! We start by introducing the podcasts represented on this episode. * (2:55) The winner of the Power 16 III! * (4:39) The art of storytelling in an RPG, as inspired by an article about running games for a blind gamer (which can be found here (http://dungeonsmaster.com/2012/03/blind/)). Adding vivid appeal in a small number of words. The importance of all five senses in the description of setting, dialog, and action. Holding the other people at your table accountable for contributing to the scene. * (41:33) Stopping just shy of entrapment, Chris Ings gives Johann something a Juggalo would surely love. We also get a gift from Japan, which went entirely to Chad. Hosts: Action Nerds: GO! (http://actionnerdsgopodcast.blogspot.com/), Dice + Food + Lodging (http://www.dicefoodlodging.com/), The Established Facts (http://theestablishedfacts.blogspot.com/), Fear the Boot (http://www.feartheboot.com), Kicked in the Dicebags (http://kickedinthedicebags.libsyn.com/), Monster Chest (http://monsterchest.com/), Postcards from the Dungeon (http://pftdcast.com/)
* (0:30) Who Stuart is and what he's been up to lately. His blog, Strange Magic (http://strangemagic.robertsongames.com/), and his micro-RPG, Weird West (http://rpg.drivethrustuff.com/product_info.php?products_id=91122&affiliate_id=163285). His Deviant Art profile can be found here (http://designmeme.deviantart.com/). * (2:00) Stuart's participation in the one-page dungeon design competition. The mental exercise of paring content down to just what's really needed. The virtue of succinctness in the face of bloated games. * (7:36) A case study on micro-RPGs, using Weird West as our example. Knights of Cydonia (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_sBOsh-vyI). * (10:18) Craft time on Fear the Boot! You can follow along by looking at the online folding guide (http://www.pocketmod.com/howto/) or viewing a video of Dan making one (http://youtu.be/0l80LPUTyCQ). * (15:45) Capturing a character in just ten traits, taking up an area smaller than a standard playing card. * (19:38) The choice to exclude a detailed setting and an explanation of what an RPG is. The increasing exposure people have to the concepts of RPGs. The use of implied setting to make the game bigger than the text itself. * (29:33) The business aspects of selling a small book for a low price. The advantages of being your own artist. The IndieGoGo campaign for Stuart's Weird West minis (http://www.indiegogo.com/Weird-West-Miniatures). * (35:13) What Stuart's playing apart from the games he's written. * (41:41) A micro-RPG in the hands of a brand new player or GM. * (43:31) What the phrase "old school" means to Stuart and why he feels it applies to his game. The G.I. Joe old school PSA parody (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNwxv6TgsuU) (fair warning: there's some strong language). Discussion about the usefulness of vernacular labels. Hosts: Chad, Chris, Dan, John, Wayne Guests: Stuart Robertson
Fear the Boot is joining up with Kicked in the Dicebags to promote some great charities Derek is running at Fear the Con this year. All the links you need are below! Information on the forums: http://www.feartheboot.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=55&t=15442 Gamers Outreach: http://gamersoutreach.org/ (http://gamersoutreach.org/) If people want to write their own letter, please address it to “Dear Soldier” and place it in an unsealed blank envelope. I have to request an address at the time of sending the letters, so I have no idea who it will go to right now. People can also use the website to send packages as well. (From much hunt and peck) - simplified instructions: 1. Read the information here: http://anysoldier.com/HowToSend.cfm 2. Read the information here: http://anysoldier.com/faq.cfm (http://anysoldier.com/faq.cfm) 3. Go to this page and select someone from the left (The capital letters designate branch) and read their requests: http://anysoldier.com/WhereToSend/ 4. Once you find someone who you wish to donate to, click the link on the main side of the page to request the address. 5. Use the info from steps 1 and 2 to put together a package of requested items or send a letter. They have suggestions about where to find things the soldiers want on this page (http://anysoldier.com/WhatToSend.cfm), however the person putting together the package really needs to read the requests first. One request I read said basically - no more jerky please!
* (0:40) If you're coming to Fear the Con V (http://www.fearthecon.com), please note the wandering nature of the street the con center is on (http://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=Drury+Inn+%26+Suites+Westport+St.+Louis,+Dorsett+Road,+St.+Louis,+MO&daddr=Maryland+Heights+Community+Center,+McKelvey+Road,+Maryland+Heights,+MO&hl=en&ll=38.720123,-90.446341&spn=0.013979,0.01929&sll=38.719353,-90.447264&sspn=0.013979,0.01929&geocode=FWC5TgIdIu2b-iFg2-5jN6b09yld73tqczLfhzHOgDYp2Suq4w%3BFXziTgIdjeWb-iH4_KOnfIFsDykhA1u_CDLfhzGswE0PGWZbdQ&oq=Maryland+Heights+&t=h&mra=ls&z=16). * (1:54) Much love for Anime Eggroll (http://animeggroll.com/)! If you're in the St. Louis area and looking for a good anime shop, we give them our highest recommendation. * (2:29) An upcoming crossover show and what it doesn't mean. * (3:16) The frightening disease known as Chris' Revenge. * (5:51) The results of the Power 16 III semi-finals. The last round has now commenced. Results will be read during our Fear the Con recording, so get your votes in now (https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/37T9MPB)! * (11:42) Offering a new player the right amount of help to get them into a roleplaying game without overwhelming, intimidating, or annoying them. Allowing changes along the way. How long to hold back before you let them suffer the same consequences as an experienced character. Hosts: Dan, Karla, Pat, Wayne
* (0:28) Fear the Con V (http://www.fearthecon.com)'s tourism events will begin the evening of Sunday, April 29th. If you'd like to join the communication hub, please send your name, cell phone number, and arrival time (if applicable) to TOFtBCH@feartheboot.com. * (2:49) An update from John on the status of Bloodmoon Goblins (http://www.bloodmoongoblins.com). * (3:43) The more obscure movies we're interested in seeing during 2012. We mentioned several things during the episode which you can find here: Dark Shadows (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wpWvkFlyl4M), G.I. Joe: Retaliation (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6te-pnrTm4), Snow White and the Huntsman (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=55Dq2psogSw), and finally Vanilla and Shovel Face (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gugBiEkLwU). The other movie Chad mentioned was Django Unchained (http://www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=77037), which only has fan-made trailers at this point. * (18:48) Movie ratings. Why so many movies end up PG-13 and our wish it wasn't so. * (27:33) A call to get your gas on at Chris' expense! * (34:05) Adapting an existing intellectual property (video game, TV show, movie, novel, etc) into a roleplaying game. Discerning what the game would be about, without trying to act out the story the IP already told. When the players don't know the IP. Building or adapting a rules system. The episode of Dr. Who Dan refers to is Snakedance (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snakedance). Hosts: Chad, Dan, John, Pat
* (0:43) Three charities at Fear the Con V (http://www.fearthecon.com) for Gamers Outreach (http://gamersoutreach.org/). There will be a raffle for an iPad, letters to the troops, and a Pathfinder Society (http://paizo.com/pathfinderSociety) tournament. You can find more details or ask questions in this thread (http://www.feartheboot.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=55&t=15442). * (4:30) Second round results from the Power 16 III. You can vote on the third round here (https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/QYCLVQ5). Third round voting ends at 6:00pm Central time on Tuesday, April 17th. * (7:37) The People of Fear the Boot vs Johann. Let the record show the defendant stands accused of the class A felony of being a Juggalo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juggalo). Defendant appeared in person to enter a plea of "not guilty". A pre-trial hearing was conducted by the court, after which the defendant was assigned legal counsel and held over for trial at a later date. * (12:38) Impressions among the hosts from the character creation session for the Stone Keep campaign (http://www.feartheboot.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=62). The differences between our approaches to starting a campaign and how we each make them work. * (23:14) How dead-end games can jade players on character creation. Whether character creation itself is an enjoyable task. * (29:48) Why we no longer trust casinos that operate outside of state oversight. * (31:46) Setting bloat. Elements that are useless to building your own story. When too much detail is provided, leaving no room for creativity. Organizing setting material. Facing down an intimidating stack of setting and history books that have piled up over the long life of an RPG. Hosts: Chris, Dan, Johann, Pat
* (0:05) Caribbean or Caribbean? Dan's dream of killing a legally (http://www.livescience.com/4463-endangered-species-protection-sought-bigfoot.html) protected (http://discovermagazine.com/1998/apr/monsterofthetub1428) cryptid. * (3:45) We try to start talking about video games that horribly disappointed us, but somehow end up talking about Juggalos. How do they work? * (12:25) Video games that went horribly off the ranch via plot, character development, or setting. While it gets cut-off in this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOiuAe4WY2s), the "urine rocket" begins around 8:45. The speed run of Morrowind can be seen here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_fFApDyki4). * (30:04) TV shows with crappy endings. Our hatred of the "cycle of apocalypse and rebirth" theme, particularly in sci-fi. * (33:13) Games we didn't or couldn't finish. * (38:59) The ending that disappointed Wayne the most. The beauty of emulators and save states. As a slight correction, it was not the final fight against Sephiroth Dan couldn't beat but rather one of Sephiroth's previous end-game boss forms ("safer", I believe). * (44:52) What truly worries Dan about traveling. Hosts: Chad, Dan, John, Wayne
* (0:29) First round results from the Power 16 III. You can vote on the second round here (https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/TY2Y7BP). Second round voting ends at 6:00pm Central time on Tuesday, April 3rd. * (6:32) A (hopefully unnecessary) disclaimer. * (7:06) Dan's impeccable moral clarity regarding urban fantasy. I'll let you guess who writes these show notes! * (20:51) Faith in a roleplaying game. The importance of creating expectations about what it can do, how it works, and how it will be measured. The advantages of using mechanics or pure RP. The role of the GM in interpreting a character's faith. Separating faith from sacrament. Dealing with religious views that exclude competing truth-claims, particularly when held by a player at the table. * (1:04:17) Faith in games that don't overtly deal with the supernatural. Hosts: Chad, Chris, Dan, Pat, Wayne
* (0:33) Fear the Con V (http://www.fearthecon.com/)! * (1:25) The Power 16 III is still up and running! You can vote here. (http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Z2HJDSM) Round one will end at 6:00pm Central time on March 20th. * (2:02) We're delaying the discussion on faith until Wayne and Chris are both on the mics. This obviously requires a test to make sure Wayne and Chris are not the same person. * (3:01) Our Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/feartheboot) and topic ideas. Plus a tangent on voice acting. * (6:03) NPCs the players are uniquely attached to. Steps for creating or finding those characters. Some ideas for leveraging such NPCs in the game. * (28:49) Should RPG books include advice on handling problem players or other table-side issues that are likely to arise in the life of a gaming group? * (36:55) Improving or speeding up character creation. Hosts: Chad, Dan, Pat, Wayne
* (0:30) Dan got his copy of Impotent Nerd Rage (http://kunaki.com/Sales.asp?PID=PX00ZV77OA) by Mikey Mason (http://comedyrockstar.blogspot.com/). * (1:40) The Power 16 III is now up and running! You can vote here. (http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Z2HJDSM) Round one will end at 6:00pm Central time on March 20th. * (3:54) We're proud to announce the release of the Narratavius app (http://narratavius.com/dotnetnuke/) -- written by Michael Ham and horribly mispronounced by Dan -- featuring a Skies of Glass story by Chris. * (7:02) Documentaries, comedies, and other entertainment that focuses on RPGs. The distinction between those that look at the hobby versus using RPG intellectual properties. What effect (if any) they have on non-gamers. What we'd like to see from such efforts. * (30:39) Recovering a game after a long hiatus. The importance of desire, energy, and initiative. Getting people back into the flow. Why the players likely need to contribute more than the GM. Hosts: Chad, Chris, Dan, Pat, Wayne