Ludology podcast


Gil Hova, Erica Hayes-Bouyouris, Sen-Foong Lim, Scott Rogers

Welcome to Ludology, an analytical discussion of the how’s and why’s of the world of board games. Rather than news and reviews, Ludology explores a variety of topics about games from a wider lens, and discusses game history, game design and game players. Ludology is part of The Dice Tower Network, the premier board game media network.

506 avsnitt

  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 161 - Tinner's Tips and Tricks


    Gil and Scott are delighted to welcome Martin Wallace back to the show. Martin was first on the show on Ludology 46 - Getting Down to Brass Tacks back in 2012 with Geoff Engelstein and a very enthusiastic Ryan Sturm. In this episode, we catch up with Martin to see what he's been up to in the last 9 years. Martin is the designer of many well-loved strategy games, like Brass, Age of Steam (and all its related games, like Railways of the World), London, A Study in Emerald, AuZtralia, and A Study in Emerald. Technical note: Martin's recording has some dropouts in it; unfortunately, those seemed to come straight from his microphone, so there wasn't much we could do about them. We hope you enjoy the episode anyway! SHOW NOTES 1m25s: Lords of Creation 4m31s: Gloomhaven, the North Sea Trilogy from Garphill Games, Jamey Stegmaier. 8m06s: The Exit games, and the Unlock! games 11m53s: Games Workshop, Ian Livingstone, the British Steve Jackson, the American Steve Jackson, and the Fighting Fantasy books. 16m18s: Anno 1800 20m08s: Catan, Dune Imperium 23m55s: Age of Industry 25m18s: "Canal holidays" 27m28s: The World Transplant Games 32m46s: A Study in Emerald 34m18s: Gil regrets not pushing back on this point a bit harder; he doesn’t think turning indigenous people into monsters is as effective a technique as Martin does. For a good perspective, check out Dan Thurot’s post about this on his excellent blog Space-Biff. 35m53s: Terry Pratchett and Discworld 38m41s: Martin is referring to the events of May 68 in France.  43m53s: Imperium Legends, De Vulgari Eloquentia 45m28s: Ankh: Gods of Egypt, Medina, and “zugzwang”  48m40s: Our favorite Star Wars clones: Starcrash, Battle Beyond the Stars, and a special shout-out to Fugitive Alien. 49m10s: Carcassonne 53m03s: Discworld: Ankh-Morpork, Doctor Who: The Card Game 55m13s: Disclaimer: Many of us on Ludology are pretty down on the HP series these days, due to the bigoted views of its author.  56m59s: The video game Stellaris, the fantasy series His Dark Materials, and the fantasy collection The Silmarillion. 1h00m05s: Rocketmen 1h00m57s: The humble pasty 1h03m32s: Hobo code
  • Ludology podcast

    Biography of a Board Game Classic 260.5 - Risk


    For this week, we're replaying the very first Biography of a Board Game that aired on Ludology. In it, Scott talks about the classic game that got so many fans and designers into the hobby: Risk.
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  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 260 - An App-titude for Game Design


    Scott and Gil welcome Nikki Valens, designer of Mansions of Madness: Second Edition, Eldritch Horror, Legacy of Dragonholt, Quirky Circuits, and the upcoming Artisans of Splendent Vale. We talk about making programming games like Quirky Circuits, app-driven games like Mansions of Madness, and campaign games like Legacy of Dragonholt. SHOW NOTES 1m27s: Brown College 3m22s: Robo Rally 3m50s: Colt Express 5m53s: Magic Maze 8m18s: The Mind 12m26s: Ra, Medici 35m49s: Betrayal Legacy 42m00s: "FFG" refers to Fantasy Flight Games, where Nikki worked for several years. 43m07s: XCOM: The Board Game 52m24s: Here's a compilation video of cats riding Roombas...
  • Ludology podcast

    GameTek Classic 259.5 - P-Hacking


    Geoff continues his dive into the probability of Pop-O-Matic dice, this time discussing how experiment results can be misrepresented through P-Hacking. 
  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 259 - Wheels Down


    Gil and Sen are delighted to welcome Sara Thompson to discuss depictions of disability in tabletop games. Sara is the creator of the Combat Wheelchair for D&D, and of the Medicine on the Path supplement for The Witcher Pen & Paper RPG. SHOW NOTES 0m49s: Critical Role, with GM Matt Mercer.  3m35s: The D&D campaign Storm King's Thunder. 15m075s: The Greek god Hephaestus. 17m23s: Jennifer Kretchmer's Twitter. 21m35s: The thread in question, in which Sara describes Geralt as disabled and how that significantly affects his story. 25m08s: The Witcher: Baptism of Fire. 32m44s: Lauren Hissrich, showrunner of The Witcher TV show. 33m45s: A sample clip of the very silly Steve Martin film Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid. 46m46s: Amanda Leduk's book Disfigured: On Fairy Tales, Disability, and Making Space. 52m19s: The Witcher: A Tome of Chaos supplement for The Witcher RPG. 53m22s: The Combat Wheelchair was featured on Critical Role episode C2E113 A Heart Grown Cold (at least, we're pretty sure it was!). It was used by NPC Dagen Underthorn. Also, Critter Hug is a show with Critical Role participants Matthew Mercer and Mica Burton interviewing people in the tabletop community. Here's the episode with Sara; you might recognize a couple other friendly faces in the same episode!
  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 258.5 - Quirkle


    Scott takes us through the history of Quirkle, the smash hit game from Susan McKinley Ross. 
  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 258 - Fun with Facehuggers


    Scott sits down with Erica, Gil, and Sen to discuss the design and making of his newest game, Alien: Fate of the Nostromo. We also discuss designing to an IP, and how to make a horror game. SHOW NOTES 0m58s: The original Alien film 1m31s: The other board game based on the film Alien. Scott is not counting board games influenced by the film without the official license, like Nemesis or The Awful Green Things From Outer Space. He’s also only counting games based specifically on the original film, so board games based on any of the sequels, like Aliens, or Alien vs. Predator, do not count. 1m38s: The “Optimus Prime Conundrum” is a term coined by the legendary and wonderful podcast Flip the Table. It describes a situation where a game breaks the IP it’s based on by allowing multiple copies of one character. This was coined in their very first episode, in which they reviewed the Transformers Adventure Game, where each player gets to play a separate version of Optimus Prime.  2m00s: The publisher Ravensburger. Note that Scott pronounces it “Ray-vensburger”, while the other hosts pronounce it “Rah-vensburger”. 3m34s: The films Elf, Home Alone, and Gremlins, and the animated series Gargoyles. 8h25m: The Topps Alien trading card set. 11m15s: The Betrayal games. 14m11s: Back to the Future: Dice through Time. 16m06s: The film Ten Little Indians, also known as And Then There Were None. There have been several versions of this film, all based on an Agatha Christie novel. 28m59s: Scott is correct in that Alien is the first film to provide a genuine “cat scare” - that is, a jump scare that turns out to just be a harmless cat. The so-called “cat scare,” in which the source of a jump scare turns out to be something ordinary, appeared 35 years before Alien. TV Tropes credits it to producer Val Lewton, in his 1942 film Cat People.  However, despite the film’s name, the source of the scare was a bus, not a cat. Note that one month after Alien’s wide release in the US, The Amityville Horror came out; it also featured a cat-powered “cat scare.” Perhaps between these two films, the cliche was solidified.  34m15s: The Horrified games: Horrified and Horrified: American Monsters. A short checklists of cryptids: Bigfoot, Mothman, Windigo, and the Jersey Devil.  36m39s: Camp Grizzly 37m17s: Clue/Cluedo, 1313 Dead End Drive 39m19s: Dread 39m51s: Kingdom: Death Monster 41m03s: Peter Jackson's "splatstick" film Braindead (released in North America as Dead Alive) 42m49s: Dixit, Weird Stories, Unspeakable Words 44m03s: Final Girl 45m05s: Mansions of Madness 47m47s: Geoff's book Achievement Relocked, Ico, Death Stranding, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, Aerith from Final Fantasy VII 49m15s: Nyctophobia, Ten Candles, Vampire Hunter, Waldschattenspiel/Shadows in the Forest 51m39s: Apocrypha, the World of Darkness series of games (including Vampire: The Masquerade) 53m33s: Erica’s news: Disney Sidekicks, Rat Queens: To the Slaughter 54m29s: Sen’s news: Avatar Legends RPG 55m16s: Gil's news: GameTek on the global shipping snarl, Weird Stories
  • Ludology podcast

    GameTek 275.5 - Pop-O-Matic


    Geoff harnesses all his mathematical techniques to answer a burning question: are Pop-O-Matic dice truly random?
  • Ludology podcast

    Ludology 257 - All About That Ace


    Geoff (making a one-off Ludology return) and Gil chat with Al Leonardi, designer of the legendary picture-book game Ace of Aces, and a legion of spinoffs using the same brilliant first-person system. SHOW NOTES 4m19s: Richthofen’s War  8m18s: If you're interested about Ace of Ace's mathematical underpinnings, and its true nature as a hex-grid game, here's Geoff's article. 9m52s: There were two Star Wars games Al worked on: Star Wars: Starfighter Battle Book, and Star Wars Lightsaber Dueling (which was based on Lost Worlds, which we discuss later in the episode). Also: Dragonriders of Pern: The Book Game, Bounty Hunter: Shootout at the Saloon, and Ace of Aces: Wingleader. 11m11s: The Immelman turn, in World War I, was a difficult maneuver that allowed a skilled pilot to turn their aircraft around quickly. In modern aerobatics, it now refers to a type of half-loop. 16m58s: "Ditto sheets," known in the UK as a "Banda machine," refers to a method of print duplication used for much of the 20th century, and very popular in American schools at the time. People of a certain age will recall paper quizzes with a distinctive blue ink on the paper. 22m16s: Two more aerial maneuvers: the wingover, and the snap roll. 25m32s: Lost Worlds 27m48s: The Society for Creative Anachronism. 39m15s: TransAmerica, Ticket To Ride
  • Ludology podcast

    Biography of a Board Game 256.5 - Afrikan tähti ("Star of Africa")


    Scott takes us through the history of Afrikan tähti ("Star of Africa"), a legendary Finnish game first released in 1949.  Foreigners in Finland article One version of the game Another version of the game An interview with the publisher Related Ludology episodes: Ludology 197 - Empires Up in Arms (discussing colonialism in board games with Mikael Jakobsson and Rick Eberhardt of the MIT Game Lab) Ludology 247 - Orc-Kay Computer (discussing cultural appropriation in games with cultural consultant James Mendez Hodes)

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