Podcasts I Listen To (Part 1)

I have a long commute, usually 3 hours a day. I listen to podcasts on my drive. Podcasts are a huge source of inspiration for my game designs. To the point where if I’m on vacation and not listening to podcasts, I sometimes stop thinking about game design. 

I got into playing hobby games, designing games, and listening to podcasts at the same time. I had played magic for a long time and played a few hobby board games. But it was playing Eclipse that got me hooked and got me interested in designing. And it was right around that time that I searched for board game podcasts to listen to. The first one I found was Board Games to Go. From there I gradually found more and more. Now I have to listen at 2.5x speed just to keep up with them. So here is the list of podcasts I listen to and why I listen to them. 

Board Game Blitz

It’s short and has interesting game discussions. The musical bits, etymology, and alliteration puzzles are all fun unique aspects. 

Board Game Business Podcast

Lots of interesting publisher discussions. It’s very aggressively edited, so the episodes pack a lot of content into a short time. 

Board Game Design Lab

Interviews with a lot of interesting designers, Gabe is also great at building a wider community around the podcast. 

The Board Game Workshop

This is my podcast so I’m probably a bit biased. But I have a lot of interesting guests and contributors. So even after recording and editing it, I still listen to the finished episode in my normal podcast rotation. 

Board Games in Bed

I first started listening to this because they mentioned my game. I kept listening because of the fun banter and discussion of games. 

Board Games Insider 

Great insider information to the business side of the industry. Also the discussion between Ignacy and Steven is fun. 

Boardgames To Go

This was the first podcast I listened to. I had a lot more time to listen, so I listened to every episode from the beginning. Coincidentally it was one of the early board game podcast in 2005. This was a big part of my introduction to the hobby. Learning about the history of it from Mark’s experience is really interesting. 

Breaking Into Board Games

Another one I’ve listened to from the beginning. It’s an interesting setup, having a designer, developer, and publisher would be a good setup for discussions between themselves. But they usually have a guest on who they interview. Lots of insights on all sorts of topics and the two truths and a lie at the end is always fun and interesting. 

Building the Game

Interesting to follow along with Jason and Rob’s attempts and successes at design and publishing. The pitches are great for getting ideas flowing. The off topic banter is enjoyable. 

The Cardboard Herald

Another interview show with a great mix of guests. Jack’s unique style of interview gets into a lot about the person beyond just their part in the board game industry. And I learn some things about Alaska.

Cognitive Gamer

I love to learn about the psychology behind games. This is one of my favorite podcasts for that reason. Each episode explains a specific thing in an understandable way. I just wish it was released more frequently. 

Design Diary

Jason takes a word of the day and goes over some design ideas inspired by it in under 10 minutes. Great for getting ideas flowing. He was doing it daily for a while, so there are a lot of episodes. Bonus, I was on a few episodes.

Design Doc

This one is a bit different since it’s about designing an RPG. The creative process and storytelling ideas are great and the audio quality is fantastic.

The Dice Tower

Possibly the most popular board game podcast. Tom and Eric give a lot of great reviews and special segments and the addition of Mandi and Suz has only increased the variety. I miss some of the contributor segments, but the show is more focused now.

The Family Gamers

Anitra and Andrew are local to me, so I met them in person before listening to the show. I started listening once I was a guest. The show focuses on playing board games and video games with your kids. I don’t have any kids, but it’s a different look at the hobby than the standard strategy game shows. And they talk about a lot of local cons, so I’m more interested.

The 5 By

Great concept for a review show. 5 people each give a 5 minute review of a game. I appreciate the great mix of personalities and games and also the ease of creating a show that doesn’t need to rely on multiple people scheduling time together. Partially the inspiration for my contributor episodes.

Five Games for Doomsday

I only recently started listening to this show. It has an interesting twist on the interview format. Each guest chooses the 5 games they would take with them to live out the post-apocalypse in a cabin. And the discussion of these games is broken up by broader interview questions. So you get background stories, stories about why certain games are important to them, and game reviews by people that absolutely love the game for some reason.

Flatout at the Table

General design discussion with several show formats and guests. Great for getting ideas flowing.

Flip Florey’s Super Saturday Serial

The spiritual successor to Flip the Table. I started listening expecting a great entertainment show like FTT. Which it is. But the rethemeification segments are very good design discussion. Also, it has a lot of other fun segments and a great list of guests.

Turns out I listen to a lot of podcasts, so this will end part one. I’ll post the rest of the list next week when I’m at Metatopia. 

Speaking of, I’ll be at Metatopia. If you’re going, find me and say hi. I’ll be demoing Comic Auction and Plutocracy and recording podcasts.

4 thoughts on “Podcasts I Listen To (Part 1)

  1. Just a quick plug for the Shut Up & Sit Down podcast. Great discussions about what works in games, aimed specifically at getting people into the hobby.

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