Episode 32: Iron Chef Game Design

In this episode Brandon and James reveal today’s special ingredient. It’s Special Ingredients! They chat about the Game Chef 2017 game jam and the games they did or did not submit to it. Starting with Game Chef and move on to talking about what a Stop, Hack, and Roll game jam would look like.   …

Episode 31: Scoping out Microscope

In this episode Brandon and James talk about the game Microscope by Ben Robbins and a few different hacks of the game they’ve considered writing. We low-key hype a new show we’re really seriously working on and make a lot of bad Inception jokes. Notes This episode got a little weird. I’m sorry. It was …

Episode 30: Initializing Initiative

In this episode Brandon and James talk about the action order economy and how games handle the very practical issue of dealing with sequence that events happen. They touch on structures for making sure every player gets the spotlight, but also making sure it makes sense for the character mechanically. Finally they ask the big …

Episode 29: Reflecting on a Fiasco

In this episode Brandon and James talk about the Fiasco, the game they agreed to prep for, as well as Reflections, the game James read by accident. Then in a twist ending, James plans for a topic without telling Brandon anything. This is a good one. Games mentions in this episode: Reflections Fiasco Tweet at …

Episode 28: Encouraging Incentivization

In this episode Brandon and James chat about incentive structures in games. James proposes a taxonomy for mechanical incentives and Brandon, a trained behaviorist, pokes a lot of holes in that theory. They come around to a solid conclusion.   Notes Here is the original Incentives Reddit thread James was reading. Between when we recorded …

Episode 27: The Show: The Game

In this episode Brandon and James follow up the previous episode by talking about James’s new mission: create a tv show creation game – tentatively called “CW The Show The Game”. They walk through the work James did in the last two weeks and develop the game even further.   Notes We can announce now …

Episode 26: Spectator Sport

In this episode Brandon and James talk about if we really need to have random number generators as a resolution mechanic. Could you replace dice with a live studio audience? James accidentally stumbles backwards into a table larp with an audience ratings mechanic. Games mentions in this episode: Apocalypse World Dread Numenera Tweet at us …

Episode 25: A Very Special Module

In this episode Brandon and James talk about how modules and other self contained game content can still be useful in the narrative game scene. They talk about borrowing content from your old D&D modules and to play in Dungeon World. In the later half of the show they make a game module for Masks …

Episode 24: Reading with Hacking in Mind

In this episode Brandon and James talk about reading new and old games in a way that helps to unmask design choices. James has been reading Cypher and taking notes on how he reads games for the first time knowing that he’ll want to come back and hack the system. Brandon has been contemplating what …

Episode 23: Rethinking Fantasy Races

In this episode Brandon and James dig into an old world building conversation they had while trying to extract a moral from it. Reskinning is hacking and thoughtful reskinning can help lead to cool plot hooks, character drama, and maybe even mechanics. Notes Single Biome Planet Trope Resources Original conversation document   Tweet at us …