RPGs

Join the Party: An Endearing Invitation To Play

Join the Party is one of my favourite actual play podcasts and from the very beginning invites listeners to join in not just on their adventure, but to try playing at all. Join the Party is probably one of the best examples of how to invite folks unfamiliar with the actual mechanics of Dungeons and Dragons into the community. The first two episodes of the first arc beautifully has two versions: one for experienced players, and one for folks new to the game. It’s worth listening to both versions! Join the Party does an excellent job in their “Beginners Start Here” episodes of pausing to give explanations while still keeping the story moving while keeping the listener immersed in the world.

Join the Party is one of the best fully scored and soundscaped actual play podcasts I’ve ever heard. The quality of the foley artistry in this show pulls you into this world in the best posible way.

The stories told are exactly what I’m looking for in an actual play: a superb combination of queer, pop-culture inspired, and comedic story-telling with a good dose of drama piled on top. This team doesn’t pull any punches; once you’re sucked in you’re in for the long run, and it is a GOOD run.

The players (Amanda, Brandon, and Michael) play together seamlessly and genuinely, and their camaraderie is clear of a deep level of friendship both in and out of character. I joke that they are the best disaster children: intent on good story telling, comedy, and a healthy combination of love and teasing. The relationships they foster between both their characters and the NPCs of the world feels genuine and natural.

The DM, Eric, weaves a perfectly balanced story of fun, nonsense, and drama. Play and combat don’t drag, the story moves at an excellent pace, and he gives the players room to breathe and grow their characters the way they want to. He launches himself full-force into all of the NPCs that feel so fully developed with backstories that the listeners and players get hints at, and he keeps them all so delightfully unique and separate, both in story and in the change of vocal inflections to give them life.

Ultimately, Join the Party invites you to try playing yourself, or to interact with the creators and fans of the show in the most endearing ways. They want you to ask questions and get involved, and they actually follow through with listener involvement: they create brilliant “After Party” episodes for each story episode where they break down the game, the events of the story, and answer questions from their fan-base.

By telling stories about characters that have elements you can relate to while keeping it upbeat and fun, Join the Party is a splendid break for your ears, heart, and soul from real-world disappointments, frustrations, and injustices. They’ve built a world that aims to be better than we are, and gives me hope for the future.

I adore this show, and I hope you do too.

TESS KC, RPG CASTS AND I AM HEAR

Find Tess: https://twitter.com/rpg_casts

Find the I Am Hear podcast: https://iamhearpodcast.com/

Find RPG Casts: http://rpgcasts.com/

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The Art of Changing Lives

The Art of Changing Lives

If you were to have talked to me a bit over a year ago and asked me about podcasts, I would have just shrugged and said that one of my friends was really into them and that would have been the extent of my knowledge. I really only thought of podcasts as information streams, since that is what my friend listened to. They were simply an audio medium to learn stuff from.

Fate and the Fablemaidens: A Favorite

Fate and the Fablemaidens: A Favorite

For those that have been following me for a while on Twitter, you'll know that I've been trying to chronicle my entire podcast listening with #MicroRyView posts for every episode I've listened to. And since I'm thoroughly addicted to podcasts, I have listened to quite a few within the last year!

Having said that, I have one recommendation today based upon a variety of factors. For my very first recommendation, I will have to give it to one of my absolute favorite podcasts right now. Fate and the Fablemaidens.

DMing For a Better World

DMing For a Better World

“YOU KNOW WHAT, LET’S MAKE A DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS PODCAST,” I announced, tipsy at a corporate happy hour at the rundown Irish pub, Jack Doyle’s. The job I was working, which gave me two whiskey gingers for my trouble, was a drag, but at least I worked with two guys who loved D&D just as much as I did. And I had a friend who I had roped into another game, so why not? Sure, I had never run a full-fledged campaign before, or never ran my own podcast, or even really knew what I was doing. But it sounded fun and I really wanted to put a Danny-Zuko-style talking gargoyle on a microphone.

How I Recruited My Podcast Editor

How I Recruited My Podcast Editor

When I look back on the last few years, it's difficult to imagine where I would be without actual play podcasts. In a very real sense, I owe a great deal of who and what I am to the medium. And I think it's safe to say, that thanks to a wonderful community and mode of expression that has unlocked so much of the person I want to be, I am happier and better thanks to a decision to try something entirely different.

Why Podcast

Why Podcast

It started with listening. Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History, CritJuice, Finding Richard Simmons.  It morphed into this massive array of shows I would dabble in and try out, always looking for something more. I caught on to Dragon Talk from Wizards of the Coast and they were interviewing all of these fledgling Actual Play podcasts that in 2016 no one had heard about, but suddenly had massive demographics after an interview on Dragon Talk.