Friday, August 7, 2015

A Selection of Malifaux Podcasts

Just a brief post this time, but I thought I’d go through some of the podcasts regarding Malifaux that I listen to regularly. I’ve been a podcast listener more or less since the media form was released to the public. For the uninitiated, podcasts are recordings people can do from their computers that are then distributed over the internet for people to download and listen to at their leisure. Imagine being able to dial up your favorite radio show, have the newest episodes delivered to your phone or other audio device, and listen to them at leisure. The most common distributor is probably itunes, but aggregators like Podbean or various other podfeeds available from the Google Marketplace or Apple Store can be used to acquire whatever podcasts might interest you. I have a job where I can listen to a large number of them during the course of a day as well as when I work out, and its one of the ways I stay abreast of what’s going on in top-level Malifaux play (since I have limited opportunities to actually play the game anymore.)

Cheated Fates Radio and Through the Breach are the old men of the Malifaux podcasting world, referring to their longevity rather than calling them old codgers, of course. Both are on a less than weekly schedule, with TTB casting roughly every other week and CFR being more sparse. Joe from CFR was actually the TO for the Gencon tournaments this year, so its fair to say that he has a finger on the pulse of competitive Malifaux in the US. TTB alternates between discussion of the roleplaying game of the same name and the miniature game. If you’re looking for someone to be a schill for Wyrd, this is the wrong show, as TTB doesn’t shy away from pointing out when they don’t agree with something Wyrd is doing or don’t like some of the models or rules. Also, as an added bonus, TTB occasionally features two people from my old play area in Lincoln, NE, Victoria and Nick Hrenda. So that’s fun for me, I guess.

Anyways.

There’s been a new renaissance of Malifaux Pods coming from the Western US. The start came from Dan’s Before We Begin podcast, which is probably my favorite show right now. BWB focuses on looking at the set-up phases of a Malifaux Game, walking through individual masters and crews and looking at how experienced players would go about hiring a crew and selecting schemes. Once you get past the obvious bias for Rezzers and the unhealthy obsession with Crooligans (I kid, I kid,) it provides some of the best strategy analysis made widely available today. They’re approaching the end of Season 1 now where they meet the goal of having one episode per master (with one for each faction with dual-faction masters) and will look to move on to an as yet slightly changed format in Season 2. As a note: Dan appears to be having technical problems at the moment, and his very regular weekly schedule has been disrupted. Look for this to change in the near future.
Growing out of the success of Before We Begin, Mistakes Were Made and Schemes and Stones have also been successfully added to the Malifaux “Podcast-o-sphere” (Copyright Adam Rogers 2015). MWM tends to be a bit more of a free-flowing discussion of how some tournament and fun games the hosts have played recently have gone, with a focus on strategy and turn-by-turn break down. Their particular unique gimmick stems from a goal that some of the hosts are attempting to complete wherein they play X number of games with each master they own as a way of really learning how they play. Schemes and Stones has rapidly risen to one of my favorites since its debut, as the show focuses on a smaller scale break-down (most shows clock in somewhere between an hour and a half to two hours) of an individual master, flowing through a very specific set of questions to give you a top level view of how they play and what their strengths and weaknesses are. The show has been very regular thus-far and provides good strategy from knowledgeable players about individual masters throughout the whole game rather than the detailed breakdown of the set-up from BWB.
Others receiving votes are the WydPlace podcast, hosted by Crissy Dubois of Califaux fame. It’s the official podcast of the massive Facebook group of the same name and features content from all parts of the hobby from gaming to painting to fluff. They seem to be on a bit of a pod-fade at the moment, but hopefully they’ll come back soon. Schoolof Faux has similarly not been released in quite some time, having grown from the ashes of the old Malifools show that was considered by most to be the gold standard in Malifaux podcasts prior to Mike Marshall’s decision to shut it down. Hosted by “Mr. Formerly 300” Joel Henry and Matt Spooner, you can get Malifaux information from one of the top Malifaux players in the world…and Matt Spooner. Their format is focused around bite-sized segments themed around various classes from the school. Hopefully it Joel and Matt will start publishing again as well. Similarly outgrown from the Malifools is Fools Daily, which sometimes covers Malifaux and other times covers other minis games. Those who were fans of the Malifools but don't necessarily care about other games may want to keep a subscription, just to hear Mike and Conrad prattle on about whatever comes to mind like the good old days. 

I’m sure there are other casts I’ve skipped as well, but these are the ones I’m most familiar with. If I skipped you, my apologies.