Podcast Recs: Total Party Kill

It’s Podcast Tuesday! Which is not actually a thing as far as I’m aware but if I pretend it is then I might feel obligated to rec a podcast EVERY Tuesday and then I will have a series of lovely podcast recs, which I intended to make starting a bit ago, ahem. ANYWAY, onwards to today’s rec for your listening joy:

What is the name of today’s fine podcast goodness? Total Party Kill.

That doesn’t sound like it has much to do with Doctor Who. That’s because it doesn’t.


Hmm. All right, so what is it about? I’m glad you asked. It’s a group of friends playing Dungeons and Dragons, divided up into handy hour long episodes, with exciting cliffhangers.

I see. So, why would I want to listen to then instead of playing D&D myself, or going for some fine proper gaming of the variety with pretty colours and lights and stuff? Because it is ridiculously fun, and funny. AND you can listen to it and do something else at the same time. Personally, Total Party Kill allowed me to redecorate my dining room into my study/gaming room. I wouldn’t have got past the bloody ceiling (oh my God, if I never have to paint a ceiling again…) if I didn’t actually look forward to the awful ceiling painting because the rule was no TPK unless decorating.

Yes, yes, but apart from it assisting you with your home decor…?  It’s both immense fun as an adventure and incredibly funny thanks to the people involved. The rules of the game are played dead straight and serious, but the gameplay is not. And seeing the DMs deal with the often outlandish and wonderful choices of the players is quite brilliant. It also helps that everyone can be terribly funny, though I have a particular soft spot for Katchka (sp?) the bard who strikes down virtually any foe with the fury of their cutting words.

Right, so where I can I listen to this? Over here. There are three campaigns so far, and a couple of one-off episodes. I rec starting with the first episode of the second campaign, as everyone knows what they’re doing, and it contains all of the best kobolds ever devised by anyone. OH THE KOBOLDS.

What’s a kobold? It’s a Germanic spirit that haunts underground places, and or a low-level mob that really likes candles…I don’t know what the D&D one actually looks like; they are underground, but not spirit-y.

You’ve never played D&D have you? No, I haven’t. SHUSHT. It’s on my Geek Bucket List.

And is this secretly your very favourite of all podcasts? It’s not a secret since I might have mentioned it once or twice, but yes, yes it is. It makes me laugh such a lot, and the combo of fantasy adventure plus many lols is very winning.




Doctor Who – Sleep No More

It’s Doctor Who day! By which I mean there is new Verity! out today, so getting back to my Doctor Who reviews seemed thematically relevant. On V!, we’re discussing the very first episode of the New Series and it’s quite a spiffy ep, of the podcast I mean (the telly ep is quite good too). I imagine we all have different prefs over what makes a good recording, but I love it best when there is enthusiastic disagreement, and discussion. Which there is.

Less controversially, or at least that’s been my impression, is Sleep No More. But just in case you’re a big fan, I give FAIR WARNING: for me this is the nadir of the season, maybe even of Capaldi’s run so far. So while I shall point out all the things I loved – and even though this is a definite lowpoint for me, I do recall there being quite a lot of bits that made me yay – there will also probably be a smidgen of argh about the stuff I did not like.

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10 Awesome Things About Dragon Age Inquisiton

Last week I finished my first runthrough of Dragon Age Inquisition, and I loved it. Ridiculously. First, it’s Bioware, and I’ve yet to meet a Bioware game I haven’t liked, and secondly, it’s Dragon Age, which has my RPG heart. (Yes, I love Mass Effect, and think it is brilliant and fem!Shep is one of the top sci-fi characters of all time, AND generally speaking I want rockets more than wizards, but somehow Dragon Age was still the one I fell in love with.) *And* this was the very first PC game I’d played for over a year. Reason being, I was concerned about the amount of time I was gaming, and decided to quit for a year to check I wasn’t horribly addicted or something, and I was just making GREAT life choices with all the imaginary adventuring nonsense. Anyway, turns out it’s QUITE EASY to choose not to game, and while I had more time to waste in other immensely creative ways, I did miss the gaming. For gaming is awesome. And DAI was the last game I’d bought before I quit and I never had a chance to play it, so it had QUITE a build up in my head to live up to, and it did. So here are my ten most favourite things from my first complete runthrough. (On a first runthrough, I’m always a wizard (or whatever the glass cannon class is)…unless I find out part way through I can be queen if I’m a warrior/rogue noble human. Ahem.) And here was no different. Also female human. Also generally nice. I don’t like it when the pretend people judge me poorly. Anyway, the things!

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Happy New Year and all that…

Some might argue the New Year arrived about a week ago; these people are, of course, wrong. It was yesterday. That bit before doesn’t count because there were floods and I had fake flu, and I wish to start the New Year both well and not feeling faintly panicky every time it starts to rain. (Flood-wise I am smack in the middle of rising water, but not terribly affected since I live on the side of a hill, though travel has not been the best.)

So Happy New Year! Much delightful gubbins to one and all!

I’m sure I had resolutions, but I’ve forgotten what they were. What I do have is a shiny new episode of Down and Safe (we’re back to a regular fortnightly schedule after being quite rubbish in December, because holidays make scheduling intercontinental Skype calls quite tricksy). And with the new year, it’s a new series of Blake’s 7 for us, as we reach the opening episode of series two, Redemption!

On Verity! we’ve announced our Exciting New Theme for the year, which is Firsts, encompassing an array of First-y things related to Doctor Who. I – in a misguided, foolish moment of idiocy – suggested we should all read the first New Adventure and have a lovely chat about it. (The NAs were the first series of Doctor Who novels published after the show’s original cancellation. Many fans enjoy them; I do not. A lot) so we are quite possibly having some sort of horrid NA related episode at some point.

And here is my first published thingie of the year: Quest for an SF/F Grandmother, an essay what I wrote for those smashing people at Uncanny Magazine. If you buy the issue (and support the magazine, yay!) or are a subscriber, you can read it now, otherwise it is available for all to read from February 2nd.

I think one of my resolutions was about being better organised. And writing more. And proper sleeping hours. Those are generally my life goals. Also I have to drink all of the rest of the mulled wine because it is well past Twelfth Night and probably I am in violation of some serious Christmas Laws by having any of the stuff still around.

(And, yes, for anyone wondering where the rest of the Doctor Who review things are, those will still happen. Untimeliness for the win!)

Farewell, delicious readers!