Episode 213 – rethinking player interviews

* (1:09) Chris puts out a request for short audio and video clips for use in episode 200.  Please send submissions to feartheboot@gmail.com by December 10th.

* (3:48) RPG Toolkit for the iPhone has just received a significant series of improvements and upgrades.  If you’re interested in checking that out, visit the app’s site for more information on the trial and paid versions.

* (6:05) Keeping movies, etc, accurate to their source material.  A discussion on when it’s appropriate and whether it’s necessary to telling the story right.

* (42:01) Rethinking our approach to interviewing new players.  Some new ideas on how to find out if someone is a good fit for your gaming group.

Hosts: Chad, Chris, Dan, Pat, Wayne

Comments (12)

GumbyNovember 25th, 2010 at 8:34 pm

Hey wait. I’ve been counting. This is episode 212.

tirsdenNovember 25th, 2010 at 10:24 pm

I have Asperger’s Syndrome. Wayne’s idea of creating and/or filling out a questionnaire previous to dating… is brilliance to me. XD And I’m a girl. But then I like filling out memes anyways, and this one would be a lot more crucial than “seven random things about me” posted to devianTart on some random day.

I can see how it’d turn some people off, but then some people aren’t wanting to be so immediately open. The dating world would be a *lot* easier for me if this survey thing were integrated, though… if the other person filling it out was honest, anyways.

SandpunkNovember 26th, 2010 at 1:05 am

… Knew I was a failure.

ChristophNovember 26th, 2010 at 7:12 am

In general, Lynch’s Dune was pretty good, but WEIRDING MODULES! What the hell? Why do that? Crouching tiger-esque martial arts would have been better and far more fitting.

MarshallNovember 26th, 2010 at 8:11 pm

I don’t think there’s anything dehumanizing about hanging out with people to see if they gel with the pre-existing gaming group. You chat, you talk about gaming styles, and then you decide whether it’ll work. If you don’t think it’ll work, you *can* actually say, “I don’t think we’re looking for the same stuff out of this game,” if you have any sack at all.

People just need to grow a pair.

TetsuboNovember 28th, 2010 at 10:08 am

You don’t get the nerd rage? Emotional connections. People are highly connected emotionally to fiction that they love. Especially if that connection is part of their youth. They are invested in these things.

Look at role-playing games. Look at how people reacted to the 3.5/4E edition change to D&D. Are there legitimate criticisms of both rules systems? Sure. Do most people fall onto one side or the other of that divide based on those logical criticisms? Not often. They are emotionally involved in which edition they love. There is no faster method to trigger my nerd rage than tell me that 4E is a better rules system than 3.5 core. Does it make sense? Nope. But there it is nonetheless.

Michael PhillipsNovember 29th, 2010 at 10:09 pm

I think your meet up to do something else idea is great for people no one in the group knows. For someone who is known to someone in the group, invite them for a fill in game or something if you want it. I would suggest if you are getting a player off a message board or some such

Patrick F.November 30th, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Don’t really comment on the FTB episodes that often, but after listening to this episode I wanted to share a couple of thoughts.

I have to mostly agree with the premise that a reinterpretation of an original franchise or IP can never be as “good” as the original.

That being said, you can mark me in the column of people that really enjoyed David Lynch’s interpretation of Frank Herbert’s Dune novel. I found the narrative structure of the novel burdensome and overly complex (which in itself is an amazing feet considering Herbert was drugged up out of his mind while writing it), while I found the film (both cuts) refreshingly original and creative. I think the film did a good job of merging Lynch’s peculiar film aesthetic AND capturing the spirit of Herbert’s novel. Ironically enough, David Lynch hated the film. It is rumored that he hated the film to the point of not wanting to associate his name with it. I’ve even read an article that reported Lynch refused to talk about the film for many, many years.

While I respect Pat’s opinion on the subject, I strongly disagree with his feelings. If artists and writers threw their proverbial hands in the air dismay and lamented the death of originality, we would be a culturally dead species. Everything is borrowed and recycled, to quote Ecclesiastes 1:9

“What has been will be again,
what has been done will be done again;
there is nothing new under the sun.”

Isn’t that why people play RPGs based on major intellectual properties in the first place? Because, in some way, be it misguided or not, gamers want to tell THEIR unique interpretation of a popular story. I challenge you to name a roleplaying game that ISN’T somehow based on major IP, film or novel. Seems to me Pat’s opinion on the strict adherence to “canon” is somewhat ironic and a bit hypocritical.

Just my two cents, otherwise another great episode from the FTB crew!

Patrick F.November 30th, 2010 at 12:56 pm

By “feet” I meant “feat” (:

DragonhelmDecember 3rd, 2010 at 3:39 pm

A player interview, in which I was the player, saved me from a bad gaming situation once. I’ve known several gamers who prefer to meet someone before allowing them into their home. You don’t know them, don’t know what their habits are, what they’re capable of, etc. Maybe you have small children and the gamer cusses. Maybe he smokes and you live in a smoke-free home. Maybe there’s just something unsettling about the person. Nothing wrong with a meet-and-greet before the game.

And I see we got the guys into a bit of nerd rage. Not going in on that one, because it lands up being a series of if/else statements. You can have movie remakes that are good, some bad, some faithful, some not so much. As card-carrying geeks, we oftentimes get into a tizzy about such things. In the end, who cares as long as you’re having fun?

Doug HDecember 13th, 2010 at 10:46 pm

I’ve had the questionnaire work and not work. I joined a Pathfinder game where we had a lot of interaction over email working out expectations and so on for the game, getting to know me a bit (as much as text would allow). At the end of that, I met with the DM at a Panera and had lunch. It went fine, and I didn’t feel like it was too awkward. I was joining a long-standing group, and they’d just had to ask players to leave, and didn’t want to repeat the problem.

On the other hand, I recently put together a new gaming group made up of my wife and two friends and another player who I hadn’t met before. He and I emailed back and forth a little (we met via a posting somewhere that I’d put up looking for players) and I just had him come to the character-creation session. Not a lot of questions, no ‘interview’, and it’s turned out fine so far.

NickApril 26th, 2011 at 6:14 am

This made me podcast made me really hungry. I really want a pork chop now!

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