Mark JohnsonUnited States
CaliforniaThat's a Palm Pilot on the left, and a pink iPod mini on the right. Yes, I've been doing BGTG that long!http://www.WargamesToGo.com
Mark Johnson's occasional & opinionated podcast about family strategy boardgames
I'm not dead yet!
Yes, I'm still going on a "sabbatical" from this podcast. But no, that hasn't happened yet! In fact, I still have three more episodes to post before I go quiet on you. This one, the 100 Great Games epilogue, and then my "goodbye for now" episode. Two of those are already recorded, and the final one will be soon. Soon!Road trip!
The one you've got before you is a sequel, of sorts. Back in 2013 I went on a boardgaming road trip to Dave Arnott to visit Jeff, Mark, Joe, and John in Fresno. On the way back we recorded an episode (#135)--in the car--where we talked about the games we played, and the weekend in general. Now Dave & I have done that again, but this time we talk about the games and something else: Dave's role as one of the hosts of BGG's video show GameNight!, as well as a couple word game apps he produces with some partners, Noodle Doodle and Tuklu. Since this is recorded in the car, on a smartphone, there's quite a bit of background noise. I did some post-processing on it to remove some of that, while hopefully keeping Dave & I sounding like human beings...not cyborgs having a conversation in a steel pipe.
10x10 challenge for 2015, so it was fun to help him get in some of those plays with games like Basari, Jäger und Sammler, Port Royal, and Industrial Waste. We also played 5ive Straight, XCOM: The Board Game, Res Publica, and Potato Man. Most of those are my kind of game. XCom really isn't, but we all wanted to try. Wouldn't you know, although my boardgames experience was just so-so with this one, it prompted me to re-install XCOM: Enemy Unknown on my computer. I've played it for a few weeks, but am again reaching that point where I may need to delete the thing because it's such a timesuck. Either that or develop more self-control and just quit the game sooner!
GameNight! has been steadily gaining a larger & larger audience, no doubt fueled by Lincoln's amazing production schedule and the obvious on-screen camaraderie of the four main hosts: Lincoln, Nikki, Aaron, and Dave. (Me, I love the intro credit sequence & catchy song. Normally I watch that, some of the intro, then skip the rules & most of the play to get to the post-game discussion. That's my favorite part.) I wanted to see how much Dave could tell us about the behind-the-scenes aspects of this awesome video show. At the time we recorded the third season for GameNight! had not started yet, but now it has.
• GameNight! on boardgamegeektv
• Episode geeklist
• Season 1 YouTube playlist
• Season 2 YouTube playlist
• Season 3 YouTube playlist
Dave's also been working with his puzzle-designing partner, Aaron Weissblum, as well as app developer Eric Snider on a couple of addicting word game apps. These are clever & fun little puzzles that scratch that word game/party game itch. We got to talk a little bit about what goes into creating those, too.
Letterboxing on this road trip. It was fun driving through some little towns in "California's heartland." I've driven the I-5 and CA-99 farmland corridors through the middle of the San Joaquin Valley my whole life, but this was one of the few times I went more than a dozen miles lateral to those arteries to find little places like Ducor in the southeastern valley.