MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

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Keeper Dan
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MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Keeper Dan » Mon Feb 10, 2014 3:11 am

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In episode 49, the whole MUP crew steps back into the old sandbox again with our special guest, podcaster and comics encyclopedia Aron Head from Ideology of Madness. We chat about Mythos influence in the realm of comics, as well as Aron's interesting approach to building game worlds with players.


Campus Crier
We've got a slew of Kickstarter news:

GenCon planning is already underway -- buy your passes and hope you can find somewhere to sleep!

Check out Murph's review of the fiction anthology Eldritch Chrome on our site.



Oh, and a huge thank you goes out to BoscoBoy and William for their sponsorship! We appreciate the help in keeping the show running. Srsly.


Tangent: Video Games
Aron asks for recommendations of Lovecraftian video games, and it sends us down a digital rabbit hole of game-name dropping.

Don't Starve

Alan Wake

Phantasmagoria


Feedback
Doctor Bob sends in a voice mail, mentioning depictions of The King in Yellow available to check out in Chaosium's The Hastur Cycle. He also mentions Ripples from Carcosa, a Chaosium monograph with scads of Hastur scenarios, and the horror game called Dread that uses a Jenga tower as a resolution mechanic.

While we're at it, might as well mention a couple of forum posts on the topic. Bret Kramer and Eibon suggest checking out a wiki devoted to The King in Yellow.

Bret provides a list of fictional version of the play:
James Blish includes portions of it in his story "More Light"
(Revised by Lin Carter in "Tatters of the King" in The Hastur Cycle
Thomas Ryng produced one
John Tynes wrote a short one, recently made available as a gift to Unspeakable Oath subscribers
and another one by Thomas Tafero called "The Tattered King"
And Eibon corrects the record on some background from last episode:
Bierce invented the names, Carcosa ("An Inhabitant of Carcosa"), Hastur ("Hiati The Shepherd"), Hali (as a person) and a couple of others. Chambers took these names and formed them into a more consistant background for his book. Lovecraft mentions Hastur and the Lake of Hali in "The Whisperer In Darkness". Derleth then took the idea that Hastur was part of the Mythos, making him Cthulhu's "half-brother" and strongly implying that Hastur sides with the Elder Gods against the Cthulhu and Co and has him imprisoned on Aldebaran (from Chambers) and served by the Byakhee ("The Return of Hastur" through to The Trail of Cthulhu). Derleth's version then dominated until the RPG arrived, then Tynes makes his own version and the Chambers influence becomes much stronger.

Special Collections
This week takes us into the unknown back room of the vaults where the secret comics archive are moldering.


DC Mythos stuff:
Marvel Mythos stuff:
Other Publishers:
All Alan Moore:


Cryptocurium Spotlight
*** This week, Dan highlights the Nyarlathotep Idol.






Main Topic
The crew chats about Aron’s method of player-driven sandboxing, as heard on the Knights of Reignsborough actual play.

Aron GMs an annual zombie survival game at Fear the Con each year, called
...And a Little Child Shall Eat Them

Star Trek: Aegean is their Trek game that will get started sometime later this year.

Realms of Cthulhu is the Savage Worlds Cthulhu game. PDF (DriveThru RPG) and Print (Amazon)

Murf mentions Eldritch Skies, another Savage Worlds game that has recently come to market.
Keeper Dan of the Miskatonic University Podcast

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Shannon Mac » Tue Feb 11, 2014 12:29 am

Another wonderful podcast.

Thanks again.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by zombiemaster » Tue Feb 11, 2014 12:32 am

I'm pretty sure the Sci-Fi horror game mentioned, where the ship computer goes crazy is, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock. Shodan, the computer what goes crazy, is one of the best villains ever.

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Dr. Gerard » Tue Feb 11, 2014 11:41 am

zombiemaster wrote:I'm pretty sure the Sci-Fi horror game mentioned, where the ship computer goes crazy is, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/System_Shock. Shodan, the computer what goes crazy, is one of the best villains ever.
Yes! System Shock is it! I think I might have been thinking of the second one, given the release year. I played it in 2001, and it seemed contemporary at the time. Amazing use of sound. I played it exclusively late at night with headphones on, and lost a lot of sleep that month.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Citysliker » Tue Feb 11, 2014 1:14 pm

Very interesting ideas on sand boxing. Really got me thinking. Also great to hear some references to some old school RPGS!

Nice that all 4 of you where on the recording as well :)

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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Graham » Tue Feb 11, 2014 4:46 pm

Good episode, two earlier Lovecraft inspired games. Interactive Fiction (Text Game)

1. Infocom:The Lurking Horror (1987)

2. Anchorhead (1998)
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Dr. Gerard » Tue Feb 11, 2014 9:46 pm

Oh yes! Text games! I have Anchorhead on my phone!
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Cthuhugh » Thu Feb 13, 2014 2:24 am

Another stellar podcast lads.That Strange Aeons game looks like something I'd love to play.When I was a lad the only thing I read was comic books-sadly I got lost very quickly during the discussion,clearly I have a lot of catching up to do.Realm of Kings sounds so cool.

*Edit* and another game that scared me back in the day,Clive Barkers Undying: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clive_Barker's_Undying
Last edited by Cthuhugh on Thu Feb 13, 2014 11:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by Cthuhugh » Thu Feb 13, 2014 6:22 am

Wow, just looking at the Boom website! They have a comic for 28 Days Later?!
Man I'm going to have to sell a kidney. ......
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Re: MU Podcast 049- The Ideology of Sandboxing

Post by R.J. MacReady » Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:37 am

Great episode guys. I really enjoyed hearing Aron's methods and rationale regarding his sandboxing. It's encouraging to hear just how successful it can be when you have both willing and invested players. Personally sandboxing a game, as a keeper, scares the hell out of me. When I heard Chad's use of index cards as an aid for keeping track of critical plot points I was like, "Oooohh, nice." I find comfort and confidence in being very familiar with the scenario material and employing whatever methods I can to make sure that happens. In the past I've made photocopies of scenarios I'm going to run and gone through them using several different colored highlighters to denote keeper only information, crucial plot elements, important transitions, necessary character interactions and so forth. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but perhaps it's time to break out of the comfort zone and try some sandboxing.
Glad to hear the entire MUP faculty on this episode. I also wanted to give Keeper Dan a shout out as he just kicks butt. :cthulhudance:Your hard work behind the scenes on the podcast really shines in the finished product and is appreciated by this loyal listener Dan.
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