WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew watches the documentary about the creation of Dungeons & Dragons that re-establishes the importance of co-founder, Dave Arneson, called Secrets of Blackmoor: The True History of Dungeons & Dragons, while D. Bethel enjoys––but fully understands the criticisms of––Sucker Punch Games’ new open world samurai game, Ghost of Tsushima.
Batman & Bill. Directed by Sheena M. Joyce and Don Argott. Hulu, 2017.
GAMES AT PAXWEST: We sent our man on the scene, Andrew, to PAX West while our Man in California, D. Bethel, watched on the internet. Now, they talk about the games they saw. Andrew muses over gameplay quirks in Stone Story RPG and Aground, while D. reacts to the strong sprites ethic in Get in the Car, Loser! and Star Renegades. Also, Andrew reflects on a series of panels he saw at the event, all of which focus on not just tabletop role-playing games, but specifically––and surprisingly––just Dungeons & Dragons.
Also, D. Bethel will be exhibiting at the 2018 Crocker Con in Sacramento! It is on Thursday, September 13th, from 6-9:30pm at the Crocker Art Museum in Downtown Sacramento. For more info, click here, or check out the Facebook Event page.
ANNOUNCEMENEWSBLASTCAST: Instead of focusing on their respective Weeks in Geek or having an extended conversation, Andrew and D. decide to cover a lot of news that dropped this week including the trailer to season 2 of Marvel/Netflix’s Jessica Jones, 20th Century Fox’s Deadpool 2 trailer, the reveal of the video-game-based-on-a-tabletop-game-based-on-a-tabletop-card-game, Sentinels of Freedom, the upcoming Dungeons & Dragons lorebook, Mordenkainen’s Tome of Foes, and the passing of John Mahoney.
A large talk that basically started the whole GamerGate mess had to do with representation in video games, specifically with how female characters were presented and utilized within gameplay and narrative with the obvious and problematic conclusion being that female playercharacters were either underrepresented or, if present, lacked the variety or depth of the male protagonists.
However, the newest critical focus––and just as important––looks away from the screen and toward both the community and the developers. If the more forward-looking fans of gaming out there want more representation in games, we should also be asking ourselves about representation in the making of games. With regard to the community, there is a harrowing documentary that I discussed on the show awhile ago,GTFO, about female pro gamers and critics that I guarantee will have you wanting to throw a chair against the wall.
The Kotaku article discusses the story behind––and of––a new book, Women in Game Development: Breaking the Glass Level-Cap, that deals specifically with female developers and their road to being professionals in the field and how that road is paved with sacrifices, shame-dodging, and prioritizing aspects of their identity that males in the same positions never had to make. It’s infuriating how human beings are being treated in a field that, at the core of it, everyone loves so very much.
In a bit of selfish rank-pulling, I’m using “Worth a Look” as a “Save for Later” bookmark for myself. This article discusses Dungeons & Dragons as it is used in the recent Netflix hit, Stranger Things (which will be my “Week in Geek” in this week’s episode). Stranger Things has been a Facebook darling, especially for nerds born in, or who lived through, the 1980s and for good reason.
Stranger Things is less a snapshot of life in the 1980s and more of an evocation of 1980s adventure movies: The Goonies, E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Stand By Me, Explorers, and the like. By mentioning those movies, I don’t mean that is nostalgically mining those movies for characters, plot points, or in-joke references; I would argue that’s not the case at all. Instead, it feels like those movies. The Duffer Brothers (and their directors) have seemingly “figured out” how those movies were paced, how they sounded, and how they looked to feel like a long-lost sibling to those earlier movies. It’s meta-eerie on top of the creepiness of the show itself. It’s able to capture what J.J. Abrams tried to capture (and did pretty well) in his excellent Super 8. But Stranger Things just does it right in an ephemeral way.
The show is framed (or so the article tells me, I haven’t finished the series) around Dungeons & Dragons, which Kunzelman decides to parse not only as a narrative bookend, but also as a thrust, arguing that the game “functions as the primary metaphor for how these young nerdy boys are able to communicate and cooperate with one another and how they contextualize the challenges they face.”
I am eager to read the article, but not as eager as I am to finish the show. It’s so good.
Things are out of sorts. People are lost to time. But Andrew and D. Bethel will do their damnedest to get another episode 100 to you on time (in time?). If you have not listened to Part 1 of Episode 100, be sure to do so before diving into part 2. Trust us. It’s important.
NICK SPRINGER AND THE FREMONT HORROR: Witness the first installment of a long-in-development (pre-podcast!) audio drama ripped from the minds of Andrew and Dan.
I AIN’T AFRAID: Andrew and Dan dig into the new Ghostbusters and love every ounce of it.
Nick Springer and the Fremont Horror Credits:
Story: Andrew Asplund
Script: D. Bethel
Directors: D. Bethel & Andrew Asplund
Editor: D. Bethel
Nick Springer: Andrew Asplund
Kasey O’Shea: Kyle Smith
Karen Waite: Elisa Parrett
Hector Vassos: Niall Feeney
-“Running on Gravel” by Benboncan
-“Man screaming” by Archeos
-“Zombie Bite 1” by Slave2theLight
-“Wing Flap (Flag Flapping)” by ani_music
-“FOLEY_Footsteps_Carpet_001” by conleec
-“11 Minutes of City Sounds” by Niedec (recorded in Seattle)
-“Getting in Car and Start” by jrssandoval
-“Starting Car from Inside” by evsecrets
-“VW Golf GTI Pull Away (Zoom H2n M&S)” by Everyday Sounds
-“Short drive, interior” by AugustSandberg
-“CarArriveAndStop” by jmdb
-“City highway busy cars pulling out” by natemarler
-“Walking-gravel” by xserra
-“01019 car door 3” by Robinhood76
-“1BramCamera” by kwahmah_02
Thanks for all those who helped this long-dreamed project get a leg-up into reality!
WEEK IN GEEK: Andrew plays the Neverwinter MMO on the Playstation 4, while Dan watches Terminator: Genisys and definitely does not hate it.
Please leave a review on iTunes to help spread the word to new potential listeners.
For all intents and purposes, that is officially 100 episodes.
-“A Journey Into Darkness” by Steve Henifin (from Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem)
-“Back in Time” by D. Bethel
-“The Worst That I Have Met (Nick Springer Theme)” by D. Bethel.
-“Back in Time” by Huey Lewis & The News
-“Stayin’ In Black” by Wax Audio
-“Fanfare” by Nobuo Uematsu (from Final Fantasy VI)
Week in Geek: Andrew plays through Resident Evil HD Remaster while Dan struggles with the humor and politics of Broforce.
All in a Name: An incredible blowout occurred on the internet after certain fans of Baldur’s Gate found, in the recent expansion Baldur’s Gate: The Siege of Dragonspear, an openly trans character and found it offensive, for a variety of reasons. Dan and Andrew ruminate on this and associated controversy in the realm of video games to varying degrees of civility and calm demeanor.
DC Comics Talk with Andrew and Luke: Andrew has a sit down with Luke Turpeinen from AcrossTheBoardGames.net about all things DC (perhaps touching on the issues around Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice).
Leave a comment on the topics of this episode at forall.libsyn.com. Be sure to join our official Facebook and Google+ pages. Email the show at forallpod [at] gmail.com. If you want to help the show, be sure to leave a review (stars and/or text reviews) at the iTunes store page for this show.
For all intents and purposes, that was an episode recap.