Sunday, February 19, 2012

How to do a a good rpg podcast

I have now listened to a few podcasts, and I think I have some ideas of things to do, and not to do, just from a lot of exposure. I don't claim the list is exhaustive, or that you can't make a good 'cast without, but it will be better if you think of a few of these points. That's my belief.

  • If you have a guest on - make sure you ask that person questions relevant to their expertise. Try asking about what makes their game special, if they are a game designer. Make sure they talk more than you do. Bring on Luke Crane, that will teach you. :)
  • If you have an "open table" discussion on a topic, figure out how someone could argue from certain points of view and then try to address those. Don't just think out loud and then go "I don't know". If you don't know, or feel like taking a stance in order to further the discussion, keep shut.
  • If you have a hard time pronouncing stuff, take a moment before the show to talk it over with your co-hosts. If you have nobody, ask a colleague or your wife! Figure something out, and stick with it.
  • Don't think you know what it means that something is free on the web. Copyright is a word you should not even mention unless you have read up on how things work! If you don't know how the OGL works, ask someone who have published a retro clone. They are often knowledgeable and willing to share their knowledge.
  • Have sections or "columns" with some kind of audio separator. Fix up a quick bumper, and have someone be "editor" for that section. Just a couple a friends rambling back and forth for two hours gets tiring. 
  • Don't state anything about a game being in print, using a specific system or any other fact about games unless you have checked it. If you are unsure, look it up on wikipedia/google/whatever while your co-hosts keeps talking. Otherwise mention that you don't know and check it afterwards and put it in the show notes.
Those are some hints. Most are not hard, but there are reasons why I mention it!

Many podcasts out there are great. I recommend you look around and sample some. My two biggest favourites, right now, are Roll For Initiative and Happy Jacks RPG Podcast. They are very different from each other!
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