This is Audio EXP for the 27th of July 2019, and the title of this episode is Orientation.
Last week’s episode, The Pivot, was the first in this series. I talked about what had happened before with the name “Audio EXP” before and how it had been about audiobooks and RPG soundtracks.
In this podcast, I want to spend a tiny amount of time on orientation. I want to talk about what is happening now with Audio EXP and the goals of the series.
Audio EXP is a highlights show. I’ve shifted through a week of stories on Geek Native and have time to talk about some of them here. Some podcasts last for an hour or more. This one won’t.
Audio EXP will remain a relatively brief summary of the geeky week. My hope is that voice is a medium for this that you will enjoy.
If you’re listening to me via Soundcloud, then you can find links to all the stories I’m about to mention in the episode description. If you are listening via the embedded radio player on Geek Native, then you can just scroll down for the transcript.
Alright, let’s take a look at the week. We had San Diego Comic-Con.
That meant trailers for the new Star Trek: Picard, and that had some surprise appearances.
We had a longer trailer for Watchmen, which Alan Moore hates, despite the fact it looks like it will get all political and tackle some heavy issues.
I know you can’t view any of those videos through your ears, but they’re all worth looping back to and watching on the site if you can.
We had expert freelancer Jill Harness on the ground at SDCC, and she has put together two cosplay galleries for the blog. The first is a collection of genderbent cosplays and the second cosplay mash-ups. That one starts with a Native Captain America, and so I was half expecting a snipe or two. I don’t want to jinx it, but that’s not happened yet. Phew.
Did you go to the Con? Did you see anything cool? Let us know.
The last big bit of SDCC news I’m going to talk about is Marvel phase 4. No Deadpool, but plenty of other titles, such as Thor: Love and Thunder, a new Doctor Strange movie and lots of Disney+ shows.
Are you looking forward to a female Thor? I think I am, but I really disappointed if it ruins the series after the success of Thor 3.
Geek Native put all those Marvel phase 4 releases onto a timeline. I had to crack open my wallet and buy a plugin just for that story. If you’re a publisher and you happen to be listening to this podcast, please feel free to send in timeline-able stories, as I’ve a brand new plugin to use.
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Speaking of publishing, this is the last week in which Geek Native patrons can vote for a publisher to be included in August’s Spotlight. This month we’re featuring Rite Publishing and giving away $10 in DriveThruRPG vouchers. That’s to encourage you to check out Rite’s product line.
At the time of recording, there are only a handful of entries in that competition, which means your chance of winning spending money at DriveThruRPG is pretty high. I think it’s also a reflection on how hard it is for indie publishers to market themselves. People care about the big names the most.
Sometimes the marketing is easy, though. At the start of the week I shared an animated version of Tales from The Loop – actually of the book The Electric State – but its pretty much the same thing. It’s gorgeous and been shared a lot on Facebook as a result. That’s another video to watch when you get your eyeballs free.
Another popular story was about Eberron. This is a fantasy steampunk mashup and an official setting for Dungeons & Dragons. Eberron’s creator, Keith Barker, clearly wants to do more with it but it seems Wizards of the Coast do not.
Barker has a good solution. He’ll use the DM’s Guild to do it himself. A as result we can now look forward to Project Ratpor and unofficial, but creator approved Eberron extras.
Are you an Eberron player or DM? What do you hope Barker’s sourcebook brings to the setting?
We’re more than halfway through this Audio EXP podcast and I’m now only getting around to a news story that might have been headline news other week.
Roll20’s says a smaller percentage of RPGs played are D&D games. There’s been a decline in interest in D&D.
Why isn’t that headline news? I think it is because people don’t believe it. They might be right.
For a start, we don’t have absolute numbers. It could be that more people are playing D&D but, in percentage terms, the slice of the market has gone down. People are playing other games too.
It might also be a counting quirk. For this report, Roll20 introduced ‘uncategorised’ as a category. It’s supposed to be where homebrew games go, but the lack of title appears to be annoying, perhaps confusing, some people and maybe it’s undermining the data.
What do you think? Is interest in D&D beginning to wane?
The Great Old Ones will be pleased with the Roll20 report, though. It also shows that Call of Cthulhu is the now second most popular game on the platform.
This week, Geek Native shared a preview of the Call of Cthulhu community content adventure called Fever: Death Toll. This preview is as spoiler-free as possible, but it’s still a preview of an adventure. So do your Keeper a favour and skip it if you think you might end up playing in it.
However, if you’re looking for some western horror stories about survival on the migration trail, then the Death Toll preview is worth checking out.
In other news, Cubicle 7 had a busy week. They shared more Warhammer and Soulbound content. They also announced they had not revealed the full cover image for the new Lord of the Rings RPG. That was a sneaky move. I approve.
If you want to see the whole cover, then pop over to Routinely Itemised #6 on Geek Native and check it out there.
Routinely Itemised is where Geek Native recaps all the RPG stories published in the week. I even add in other interesting discoveries and news from external sites. It differs from Audio EXP because Routinely Itemised lists everything RPG story from the week. Audio EXP discusses some stories, and they don’t have to be gaming ones.
Routinely Itemised mascot is Mr Root the news minotaur. Audio EXP’s mascot is Dot Rar the dragon. Mind you, you can buy t-shirts of both through the Geek Native store and so perhaps they are not all that different.
I’m going to stick with Cubicle 7 for the last story too. They were handed the license to the Warhammer 40K RPG by Games Workshop this year. That was a bit of a surprise. The game was brand new, and it looked like it was going to be a success, so why change publisher?
Imagine buying a big hardback only to discover it was out of print and moved to a new publisher in just a few months. That’s what happened to Wrath & Glory players.
Now Cubicle 7 has been careful to manage expectations. They don’t want to put people off the game. They don’t want anger. They’ve been carefully talking about compatibility.
This week, though, they used two words for the first time. They used the phrase ‘Revised Edition‘. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see how big the changes are.
Thank you for listening.
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