Proposal: GM roundtable/seminar podcasts

edited April 2011 in Story Games
If this already exists, then never mind. I know a few things like this exist and lots of podcasts have done the odd episode or two about GMing, but I'd like to see a series dedicated explicitly to this. There would be thematic episodes with various guests from different backgrounds, talking about different approaches and techniques. All practical stuff. Kinda like the Gnome Stew but a lot more focused and a lot more relaxed and open at the same time.

I'd love to hear a bunch of people chat about how they do certain things when they GM. Unless someone with more expertise and a better tech setup steps in I'd be willing to organize this myself. I already have questions I'd like to ask.

And while we're at it, why just GMs. Let's have a series for/with players, too. How to be a good player - we don't get much talk about that.

(I don't mean it in an universal sense, good/bad value judgments, obviously. There is no such thing as an objectively good player or GM for every game.)

What do you say?


  • I think that would be awesome!
  • What about the southwest GM conference thing? Did they record those sessions?
  • I've always wanted a podcast where listeners submit questions via email, twitter, or voicemail and GMs of different styles take turns giving contradictory but equally valid answers.

    "What do I do if I feel railroaded?"

    Then have an Old School D&D GM, a Story Games GM, a LARP GM, a D&D 4E GM all take turns answering separately. And then let them debate their answers.
  • We did not record the conferences - it was outside our budget of $0, and beyond the scope of our free library meeting room. Paul Tevis did a youtube version of what he presented at the conference at RinCon, I'll see if I can find the link.

    I love John's Q&A format idea. I would love to take part in such a project.
  • edited April 2011
    Very cool. I like John's proposed format, too.

    I don't think I could personally do a podcast anytime soon, but a by-email Q&A is totally doable for a start...I'll start bugging people around the net (if you feel super awesome like you should be one of the guest GMs speak up!).

    In the meantime y'all can start asking interesting questions. Or just brainstorm.
  • John's suggestion is awesome
  • I really enjoyed the Newbie DM Minicast.

    It's not the same format but has similarities. Listeners leave questions on their voice mail line and each episode the Newbie DM gathers different DMs to answer the question. Very quick, short, and to the point.

    Individual episodes lack the diversity I would love to see but from episode to episode you get different perspectives due to rotating DMs. But I enjoy the show!
  • EndGame in Oakland did a GM seminar recently, and I heard it was a big hit. Don't know if anyone recorded it, though.
  • Let me flip this around. Assuming this was a podcast, assuming this was a once a month thing, assuming we already had a group of interested people ready to aswer questions...

    What would you ask?
  • Posted By: HarlequinLet me flip this around. Assuming this was a podcast, assuming this was a once a month thing, assuming we already had a group of interested people ready to aswer questions...

    What would you ask?
    Well I asked that question, but if you're asking me specifically, here's a few things I had in mind. First of, some thematic "open discussions", people just running their mouths.
    -game-specific episodes with several different GMs (like "What kind of GMing styles work for VtM?")
    -the opposite: GM-style-specific episodes with several GMs (like "What kind of games does the MC approach work for?")
    -topical discussions about techniques, atmosphere, language, tools, props...
    -guest GM episodes. Get someone like James Mal to talk about how he runs Dwimmermount.
    -genres: ways to do horror, ways to do weird, ways to do fantasy...

    And then maybe half of each episode would be something like John suggested, "readers' questions" with different answers.

    Do you actually have something going?
  • It's one of the things I'ld like to do with the Canon Puncture show. I know we'd rather have an interactive show instead of just "here's what we did since the last time we talked."

    The hurdle for me has been getting actualy questions out of listeners, you know? What do people actually want to hear?

    Those are some good, loaded questions there. Rich has tenatively offere to be the moderator for such a show.
  • So I've started asking people if they'd like to participate and if I get enough positive feedback I'll start taking this project seriously. In the meantime you guys can tell me what you'd like to hear about or who you'd like to hear speak.

    Try to limit yourself:
    -It should be about GMing or GMs.
    -It doesn't have to be practical, but I'd prefer that to any sort of theory.
    -It should be either an one guest "interview" kind of thing ("I'd like to hear X talk about Y.") or a roundtable discussion with people who can bring diverse views to the same subject ("I'd like to hear X, Y and Z compare their experiences with Q.")
    -Just simple questions/advice relating to mastering/facilitating.
  • Crossposted. Harlequin: I don't want to steal you show, so I dunno, maybe we can do something together.
  • I wouldn't accuse you of stealing. I'm just enthusiastic. Let me know if you want me in. I'll put up some questions later.
  • -How do you maintain a difference between protected, in game talking, and meta-talk? Like how do you know the difference between "I want to stab this guy!" and the character saying aloud to his party members "I want to stab this guy!" ? Do you find this seperation necessary?

    -When players don't have a character in the scene, what do you do? Do you think it's important to keep them engaged? Who's responsibility is it, if anyone's?

    -What's up with d12s? Why don't they get any love?

    -Do you have any "guilty pleasure" games? Something you like, even if you catch flak from your friends for it?

    -Have you ever made a player narrate their own character's failure? Do you think it adds anything to their buy-in?

    -What tricks do you (personally) use to maintain tension in a horror game? Are there any you have seen or heard, but haven't used, and if so, why not?

    This kind of stuff? Or is this uninteresting? I can never tell.
  • And personally, I wouldn't mind hearing more from Jason Morningstar and Rob Bohl. I'm only singling them out because I've talked to them both very briefly and felt more would be awesome.
  • Arnold, I like most of your questions, but I don't really feel inspired to listen to random DMs wax on about love for d12s or their guilty pleasures. Maybe its just me, though.
  • Teatine, you should go and make this happen. Ignore what Arnold and I are doing, we're just hangers-on. ;)
  • I'll be happy to explain why the d12 is the best die, but here's a few things to think about. You know who else loved the d12?

    Abraham Lincoln.

    And...and Florence Nightingale.
  • The Happy Jacks RPG podcast covers a lot of GMing topics and advice. It's a great podcast.
    You can find them on iTunes. (FYI - there is explicit language and beer talk and good closing music.)
  • Posted By: Teataine
    What do you say?
    This sounds neat!

    I know lots of GM/play-advice podcasts. But they're mostly done by people who also game together, which to some extent means that they have the same style of gaming.

    A podcast that brings together different styles of GMs to discuss how they handle or think of various topics would be cool.

    Perhaps an Indie-gamer, an Old School D&D-DM, a trad GM and a freeform/jeep gamer?
  • Happy Jacks is interesting (listening to a few now)

    But I think Teatine's idea is different. It would work better with a moderator and a little more focus. And yes to Wilhelm, GMs who don't know each other and traditionally enjoy different games/styles.
  • My sword and shield stand ready to serve under the old-school banner, should this awesome project come to pass.
  • Posted By: WilhelmPerhaps an Indie-gamer, an Old School D&D-DM, a trad GM and a freeform/jeep gamer?
    Yeah, what about freeform and indy guys who don't usually GM except in the sense they play GM-full games?
  • Let it be known that I've contacted a number of people both here and on other forums and I think I've got enough questions, ideas and interested parties to record at least three or four episodes.

    I'll start scheduling the first talk right about now. I'll keep y'all updated.

    All comments, ideas and suggestions still very welcome.
  • Awesome!
  • Hey, we recorded this last night, it was super fun.

    At least, we hope we recorded it. Technical issues, yep.
  • Looking forward to a link when/if it becomes presentable. :-)
Sign In or Register to comment.