2019-08-14 The kind of RPG podcast I miss

You probably know that I have a podcast, the Halberds and Helmets Podcast. Recently on Reddit somebody said they loved it and asked for recommendations. If only I knew!

My favourite RPG podcast is Judd Karlman’s podcast, Daydreaming about Dragons. I like how he just picks up the phone and starts talking.

I think what I like about Judd’s podcast is that he talks about technique and inspiration – not about the actual things. It’s hard to put into words. I once said the following about Judd’s podcast on Mastodon:

What is it about the exact things he talks about that keeps me listening? I think it’s because I can imagine myself in the conversation I can’t have in my face-to-face games: referees talking to each other about their games, about what works and what inspired them and what didn’t work. I even listen to the call-ins because they’re not about praising each other or the products made. Just GM-to-GM talk.

And that’s it, I think. I feel like I’m having a Referee-to-Referee talk when I listen to the podcast, which is something I don’t get at my table with my players. We play on weekdays, people come late because they come from work and they leave early because they have to work the next day. We talk about parents, injuries, jobs, relationships, life. Somehow we don’t talk about running games.

I think other podcasts often fall into author-to-reader talk. It’s still hard to put into words. Judd talks about why and how he does things and doesn’t talk about the things themselves. He talks about why random tables are great and maybe what effect it had that one time he used a random table, but he doesn’t provide listeners with actual random tables, nor does he pontificate about random tables. It’s conversational. I love it.

If you know other podcasts like that, I’d love to know about them! Perhaps Fear of a Black Dragon comes close because the two hosts talk about how they run games, how they use the material, and that’s great, except I’m usually not too interested in the actual material they use to anchor the conversation.

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