Episode 05 — “Feedback”

It’s time to address some listener feedback. And we certainly go beyond the call of duty on that one. Meanwhile, Scott builds a pie, Brian plays a game, and we both discuss an overload of Star Wars.

Brian: https://twitter.com/Fiddleback
Scott: https://twitter.com/TheAngryGM

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The voice and producer of GM Word of the Week, he is also a Freelance Tabletop Game Editor and Writer as well as a long time podcaster. He has written and edited for Fantasy Flight Games' Star Wars RPGs, Modiphius Entertainment's Mutant Chronicles and Infinity RPGs and several others. He is currently working on his own Transit RPG.

13 thoughts on “Episode 05 — “Feedback”

  1. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the Upright Citizens Brigade spoof of the Matrix, but I have to plug it every time I hear some one mention the Matrix.

  2. Another great discussion, gents. The horror discussion was better covered in the Angry GM posting, but I still got plenty from the discussion before I read the article. I’ve never played a game with a horror theme (Call of Cthulhu has never really appealed), but I can see where it would be problematic in a RPG.

    Pi-tendo – making one for my 9 year old for Christmas, yes, as an excuse to play through the old faves again, but also to introduce my daughter to those simpler games I grew up with.

    Matt Colville started up an online database to track published adventures, mostly what’s in them (monsters, treasure, handouts) – https://www.adventurelookup.com/. It just opened up and still working on perfecting the database, but I think something I’m going to suggest be added now is a review section for the adventures uploaded.

    1. I’m tempted with the TinyTendo (As you will eventually learn it is being called) myself. And I was a Sega kid who never had a Nintendo.
      I’d heard about Colville’s project, but also that it had hit some road bumps. Hopefully, now that it is up and running it will be useful. Of course, there is always RPGGeek from the fine folks behind BoardGameGeek. I believe Episode 6 will circle back around to this topic in a way.

      It’s always useful to check the sites of one or the other of us to see if some follow up or expansion has been snuck in.

      thanks for commenting, Ambassador Bill!

  3. I enjoyed your discussion on character arcs. It reminded me of an essay Stephen R Donaldson wrote in the Afterward to his book “The Real Story” where he discussed the difference between melodrama and drama.

    His thesis was that the characters in each represent the three archetypes: the villain, the victim and the hero. In a melodrama the characters play to type: the villain does something wicked to the victim who is then saved by the hero – The Perils of Pauline being the archetype (of the archetype) in film, most fairy tales adhere to the convention too. The audience to melodrama has a simple task: boo the villain, fear for the victim and cheer the hero.

    In a drama, the story explores the transition of the characters from one archetype to another – the villain becomes the victim, the victim becomes the hero and the hero becomes the villain. Or they go around the circle the other way. Or, if the story is long enough, they go through all of the archetypes. Jamie Lanister’s character in Game of Thrones springs to mind, a man who threw a child from a window (villain) who was then imprisoned and mutilated (victim) may now be on a heroic path … or maybe not. As an audience we have to work for our entertainment: the hero is flawed, the villain is human and the victim is not blameless – how we feel about the characters is complicated.

    With respect to Star Wars, this is the reason Empire Strikes Back is the best film in the franchise. Our hero Luke becomes a maimed and bloodied victim (as does Han), our victim Leia becomes our hero by taking charge of the Falcon and rescuing Luke and our villains (Darth Vader and Lando) are on the path to heroism. It also explains why Rogue One was a much better movie than The Force Awakens; the latter is an action-adventure movie with minimal character development the former is a war movie with the character’s making difficult ethical choices.

    1. You raise some good points and even better examples.

      Melodrama, of course, has its place depending on the sorts of stories you want to tell. As does drama. The problem comes in when you go in expecting one and get the other. Generally speaking, I’ve not got what I wanted or expected out of many of the Star Wars movies to come out since Return of the Jedi.

      Which is probably why my favorite character in the whole of Star Wars, and the one I consider to have the best character arc out of any of them, is Ahsoka Tano. Which makes the Clone Wars animated series and the Rebels animated series probably my favorite Star Wars of them all.

  4. I’m glad that Hellblade was mentioned, as I had glanced over it on Steam and never stopped to find out what it was about. Fiddleback’s summary sold me on the game and I just played it this weekend, and I thought it was fantastic!

    Also, as a Star Wars fan, I completely understand your fatigue with the franchise, though for different reasons. I have enjoyed the new movies and expect to continue seeing them as they are released, but I have finally come to a point where I’m getting annoyed seeing its presence everywhere (I was able to resist this for years). It’s difficult to just like the bits of Star Wars stuff that I want to without being accosted by it. But such is the way of things. Just the other day my wife and I were at the grocery store and saw a display of Star Wars bananas. I mean, come on.

    The show is entertaining, guys, please keep it up!

    1. Glad you enjoyed Hellblade. It’s really quite an amazing piece of work and the best thing I’ve played in ages.

      Part of my Star Wars fatigue is, like you, that it is effectively everywhere and omnipresent. But Star Wars bananas?? Come on indeed.

  5. The zombie movie in the mall is not Peter Jackson’s “Dead Alive” but rather George Romero’s 1978 “Dawn of the Dead.”

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