It walked into my browser, its eyes dark and legs that went on forever. It sauntered over to my audio streaming software and asked: “Can I talk to you about film noir?”
This week Jackson, Daniel, and special guest Shelby are all about hardboiled detectives, dames, gams, and guns. With Shelby’s expert assistance, your hosts take a look at what makes film noir tick and how it has gone on to influence a whole host of genres in the modern age – from Chinatown to True Detective.
Welcome back to Player’s Guide faithful listeners!
This week Jackson and Daniel slide their new story-focused direction in to the hilt. They tackle the concept of story structure in games – what works and what doesn’t when telling a story through an interactive visual medium.
Many, many people make the misstep of trying to directly translate what works in movies and TV into games. Frequently, this leads to games that feel flat. Your hosts talk about what sets games apart and how their unique properties can be used to pull an audience even deeper into a fictional world.
And as always, some cool shit you should check out:
This week you should play Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn
Daniel and Jackson are back with a super topical podcast about a miniseries from 2014. For those of you unfamiliar, Over the Garden Wall was a ten-episode story released by Cartoon Network. Since its release it has received something of a cult following in the same circles that appreciate the likes of Adventure Time, Steven Universe, and Bravest Warriors.
Since each of those properties has been praised on this podcast before, you can probably guess where this episode is going. Anyways, even if you aren’t familiar with Over the Garden Wall, there is a lot of good discussion about character arcs, the nature of fear, and how adult-oriented media tackles cynical reality versus how child-oriented media does.
Of course – spoilers abound; both for Over the Garden Wall and for Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency.
As always, here are some things you should check out this week:
This week you should watch Garfunkel and Oates (here is the sample we promised)
This week you should play Mystic Vale
And some more bookkeeping, here is the article on the nature of the Beast that Daniel mentions in this episode.
This week Jackson and Daniel throw a curve ball and take their thematic inspiration from sports. With the recent World Series victory by the Chicago Cubs, it seemed like the right moment to talk about underdog stories.
Alongside the hero’s journey and the redemption arc, the underdog tale is one of the most common storytelling tropes to encounter in speculative fiction. It also creates an interesting divergence of storyline and game mechanics when it is presented in video games.
Your hosts do their best to slice off the juiciest cuts of discussion from this meaty topic. We hope you enjoy!
This week you should watch The Get Down
This week you should listen to the Myths and Legends Podcast (which can be found here: https://www.mythpodcast.com)
Jackson and Daniel are joined by Paul this week to discuss music in television and movies. Spurred specifically by the use of music in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the guys delve into some of their favourite musical moments, as well as a few more lacklustre soundtracks.
Trying to be on-theme this week, all the recommendations are things to which you listen:
This week you should listen to Pacific Myth by Protest the Hero
We are late this week because Jackson has been working a ludicrous number of hours and has not been able to post this week’s episode. Our apologies.
But, don’t worry, everything is okay and we’re here now. This week’s episode is focused on Netflix’s latest smash-hit, Stranger Things. Daniel and Jackson dig into the show’s high and low points, while trying to identify why it seems to resonate so strongly with its audience.
They also (well, mostly Jackson) get a lot of the character names wrong. Oops.
And, of course, there are recommendations:
This week you should read The Obelisk Gate by NK Jemisin
This week you should play Mysterium
This week you should watch Kubo and the Two-Strings
OH! And spoilers, lots of spoilers in this episode.
We apologize for the delay in this week’s posting. The harsh realities of adult life prevented the podcast from going up this weekend. We hope you can forgive us.
This week, Jackson and Daniel are joined by Shelby to discuss redemption arcs in fiction. The idea of a troubled character overcoming their flaws to become a better person is common in fictitious works. While the story is so ubiquitous, it can be difficult to tell well – and any difficult-to-tell story is ripe soil for discussion.
There are also recommendations:
This week you should watch High-Rise
This week you should listen to Last Podcast on the Left