In this episode of the Nerd Louisville Podcast, we talk with Dirk Stanley, owner of Simian Circle Games and creator of the Far Away Land role-playing game. Dirk lives and works in Louisville, and just recently raised over $13,000 from Kickstarter to produce five brand new Far Away Land books.
- Louisville weather is weird (1:15)
- Dirk Stanley is a writer and artist (2:00)
- Dirk Stanley is not Altruistic (4:00)
- Far Away Land vs. Adventure Time (6:40)
- Training Montages (9:00)
- Dirk Stanley is a Muder Hobo (14:00)
- How do they die? (17:50)
- Revised Tome of Awesome (19:00)
- Failure can be fun! (22:30)
- Jonathan and Dirk love killing players (26:00)
- Life in Eastern Kentucky (30:00)
- Naval Combat Rules (36:30)
- Dirk and Jonathan talk about Game of Thrones (41:30)
You can learn more about Dirk Stanley and Far Away Land on the Far Away Land Website
- Jonathan Meadows
In this episode, we talk with James L. Sutter, one of the original creators of Pathfinder and the Creative Director in charge of launching Starfinder. He was also the Executive Editor in charge of the Pathfinder novels and has written two fantasy novels—Death’s Heretic and The Redemption Engine. He will be the Gaming Guest of Honor at Conglomeration 2018 which begins on March 30th.
- James’ New Novel
- James L. Sutter’s Work (Starfinder, Pathfinder, Comics, Video Games, Novels)
- Iconic Pathfinder Characters
- Being a GM
- Numenera/Planescape/Monte Cook Games
- The Creation of Starfinder
- Mysteries in Starfinder
- Working in the Game Industry
- Writing for a Living
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi
- Conglomeration 2018
- Jonathan Meadows
- Brandon K Aten
Kenneth Hite & Next-Gen Nerds Play Trail of Cthulhu
It’s been a while since our last podcast! In the meantime, we’ve done something big and recorded a 3-hour actual play session. The awesome thing about it? It features Kenneth Hite running his game, Trail of Cthulhu, for Louisville next-gen nerds from Iroquois High School. He spent the afternoon leading the kids through a mythical haunted house long abandoned but filled with mystery and murder. The kids took on the roles of investigators, cops, archaeologists, and mad doctors intent on exploring the house and uncovering its most horrible secrets. The game starts off slow as the players orient themselves and figure out the system, but before long the pace ramps up and the party descends into madness and macabre; a quintessential game of Trail of Cthulhu if there ever was one.
Kenneth Hite is a professional game designer. In addition to Trail of Cthulhu, Hite has written numerous other fantastic games, supplements, and resources. If you’d like to purchase Trail of Cthulhu for yourself, we highly encourage you to check out our sponsors and buy locally. You can listen to more of Hite on his podcast, Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff. We are incredibly grateful for him taking time to join us in Louisville to run a memorable session for our young nerds and enjoying our bourbon trail.
We’d like to thank our sponsors and local donors like you who help us provide special experiences for the future generations of nerds in our city. Thank you! If you are reading this or listening to the podcast and want to be a part of making our initiatives even better, please consider a donation.
Music and effects graciously provided for use by Chad Fifer, co-host of the amazing H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast. If you’re at all interested in the weird, supernatural horror that inspired the Trail of Cthulhu game, we highly recommend this podcast.
Episode 25 – Louisville Arcade Expo
Nerd Louisville hits up the 2017 Louisville Arcade Expo over the weekend and explore the vast halls filled with arcades, pinball machines, and classic consoles. We had a chance to sit down with a few attendees and ask them about their experiences at the Louisville Arcade Expo this year.
- Lauren Votruba & Gordon Smith
- Kim Way (aka Malicious Cosplay) @ 13:30
- Mark & Eric of Cuddle Dragons @ 19:40
- Dave Buschermohle of Pintagrams @ 28:00
- What else is here besides just games?
- Mike’s lack of Hello Kitty knowledge
- Classical arcade training
- Lauren helps describe Gordon’s nerd ensemble
- Gordon’s super power
- Gordon’s plan to find and play Gorf
- Lauren’s favorite pinball machines
- Creepy. Sexy. Cool.
- Anthony is the worst
- Hx of Dot Matrix Printers
- Buying games at the Arcade Expo
- Lauren’s GoFundMe
- Kim Way – Malicious Cosplay goes to Cons
- Kids’ cosplay contest
- Cosplay at gaming-focused conventions
- Adult contests and prizes
- Cosplay seminars for beginners and veteran cosplayers
- Kim answers Ariel’s concerns about cosplaying as a drow
- Where to find Malicious Cosplay on the web?
- Cuddle Dragons
- The Sony-Nintendo Playstation prototype at Louisville Arcade Expo
- Street Fighter thoughts
- Sweat and heat in the grand hall
- Losing your wife
- Other rare consoles at Louisville Arcade Expo
- The flow and presentation of the convention
- Kids at the convention
- Where to find Cuddle Dragons?
- Local indie video game developers
- Bullshitting with Buschermohle
- Official Pin for Louisville Arcade Expo 2017
- Bands at the Expo – Bit Brigade
- Children at the Louisville Arcade Expo
- Getting destroyed by young kids in Rogue Society tournament
- Where to find Pintagrams?
Many thanks to the folks at Louisville Arcade Expo for providing us with some guest passes.
Episode 24 – Gamescience
Mike & Ariel travel down to historic Bardstown, Ky. to banter with James Means, the operations manager for Gamescience, about the iconic dice company moving to Kentucky to become a part of local nerd culture here. Contrary to rumors, the company known for its funky polyhedrals are not out of business! We discuss the transition, upcoming projects, and the various ways Gamescience is having an impact on the local nerd scene, including a few scoops about never before revealed information about new products coming down the pipeline for 2017!
- What is Gamescience?
- Lou Zocchi and origins
- The Lou Zocchi precision dice presentation
- What makes Gamescience dice the best dice?
- The precision, clip mark, etc.
- Mike, the Killer DM
- Tumbling dice, casino dice
- The science of precision dice
- How James fell into running Gamescience?
- Big bags o’ dice
- Magical vacuum bubbles and dark karma
- Meeting Lou Zocchi at conventions
- Gamescience coming to Kentucky
- Opening a storefront with a variety of game stuff
- Bardstown is now for bourbon AND dice!
- James learning Yu-Gi-Oh and Pokemon
- Teaching children games and the benefits of recreational gaming
- Next Gen Nerds
- The future plans for Gamescience
- Scoops for 2017 products – new d100 “Zocchi-hedron” and d30 in limited quantities
- Funky dice – d3, d5, etc.
- Joseph Goodman and Dungeon Crawl Classics
- American made and Kentucky proud
- How to order dice and follows news for Gamescience
- Upcoming conventions
- Come to Bardstown
- Always tip your bartender!
You can see the gorgeous Gamescience dice selection and order on their website and follow them on Facebook. You can also visit their new storefront in Bardstown, Ky. Have some bourbon while you’re there!
Episode 23 – Louisville Tech Ladies
If you’re a smart lady in Louisville and interested in all manner of technology, you should check out Louisville Tech Ladies. The Nerd Louisville Podcast sat down with Sue Freas, the founder of the group, to discuss just what this group is all about, women in tech fields, how one can get involved, and the future of the organization.
Note: we recorded at a coffee shop, so sometimes you’ll hear some grinding and steaming in the background.
- Who are the Louisville Tech Ladies?
- Timing is everything
- Women in the technology field
- Not being the minority in the room, STEM, representation
- Going somewhere where you don’t feel alone
- False starts, She Geeks Out inspiration, and finally getting the group off the ground
- Defining “tech curious” and smart women
- NASCAR geekery
- Who is welcome to the Lou Tech Ladies?
- 6th grade dances
- Activities and networking, getting something out of the meetup beyond networking
- Presentations and speakers, varieties of topics
- How many people are showing up to these events?
- The need for a group like this
- Matchmaking for tech engagement
- The conversation around becoming a non-profit
- How to get involved
- First Thursday of every month
- The next meetup is 6-8 PM on Feb. 2nd event at Occam Design
- Sue’s nerdy side
- Arcade Expo
- Dr. Who for 10 minutes
- The end
Episode 22 – All the Whos in Whoville
If you’re looking for a nerdy way to kick off your holiday season, there’s not a better one than hitting up the Iroquois Amphitheater tonight (11/19) at 7:30 and tomorrow (11/20) at 7:30 as well. Todd Zeigler wrote and stars in a local theater production that marries Doctor Who and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The show is a perfect outing for adults and families alike.
Over the course of the two-hour performance, the audience experiences an incredibly written yarn that pits the Doctor – and his many iterations – against the classic Christmas foe, The Grinch. Both the Doctor Who devotee and your average nerd who’s only experienced The Grinch in yuletide history will enjoy this humorous, riveting, and charming play.
Mike & Jonathan had a chance to sit down with Todd after seeing an earlier performance today and we discussed how awesome it was and how Doctor Who and Dr. Seuss make for an amazing mashup.
- What is All the Whos in Whoville?
- When are the next showings?
- Mike admits he is not a Doctor Who fan
- David Thurmond, one of the co-stars, talks about his character
- The rivalry among the Doctors
- Learning about Doctor Who as an actor about to play the Doctor
- David’s resemblance to the current Doctor, Peter Capaldi
- Reading the script without knowledge of the Doctor Who series
- Riffing off the show and incorporating stuff into the play
- Working with the BBC and their support
- Seeing the play without knowledge of Doctor Who
- David has to leave but plugs a couple shows he is choreographing elsewhere: Fiddler on the Roof & Annie
- The plot of the play being a great story, even without getting the references
- Todd does a terrible southern accent
- This story being one of “What Happens Next? after the redemption of The Grinch and the themes of both meshing very well
- The production capturing the attention of both adults and children
- What the hell is “wibbly wobbly”?
- Children following along and enjoying the show
- Jonathan’s impressions and it feeling like an episode of the TV show
- A greater message within the story
- Some Doctor Who discussion
- Go check it out!
You can buy tickets for the show at the Iroquois Amphitheater website or in person!
- Mike Pfaff
- Jonathan Meadows
Episode 21 – Louisville Cartoonist Society
Mike & Joe sat down with Alex O’Keefe and Zach Allen-Kelly of the Louisville Cartoonist Society at the Anthology Release Party for their latest anthology for local comic artists.
- What is the Louisville Cartoonist Society?
- Purpose of the group
- Annual Anthologies with differing themes (this year is “space”)
- Anthology Release Party at Destination Comics (a NL sponsor!)
- Getting into the anthology as a comic artist
- The mix of styles within the Cartoonist Society and the advantages of that
- The Origin Story of LCS and how Zach and Alex got involved
- Drink N’ Draw at Zanzabar
- Appreciation of the variety of styles within the LCS
- Where to buy the Anthology locally?
- Favorite local Comic Cons – and an awesome one in Oldham County
- What sort of work Zach and Alex have been doing lately and how the anthology pushes them to work
- Becoming a better artist by working with others in the LCS and being forced to draw
- The upcoming All Ages Art Jam and making a safe space for more ladies who are artists
- So… How Alex & Zach started drawing, inspirations, and recommendations
- How can someone get involved with the Louisville Cartoonist Society?
- Mike Pfaff
- Joe Dunman
Images courtesy of Joy Moyes
Episode 20 – Louisville Zombie Walk [Explicit]
Disclaimer: this episode has The Devil in it and thus there is some evil and a bit of cursing.
Nerd Louisville chats with the folks behind the 2016 Louisville Zombie Walk. We talk about the upcoming event, this Saturday, August 27th at 8:29 p.m. The Louisville Zombie Walk boasts nearly 40,000 attendees and has become the world’s largest and longest running zombie walk in the world.
- What is the Zombie Walk all about?
- Death & Celebrities in 2016
- Derby City Rollergirls leading the walk
- Attendance expectations for this year
- Itinerary for Saturday
- Pre-parties and Professional Makeup
- 8:29 PM start time
- Participation as an entrance fee
- Where to get professional makeup done?
- Where to buy your own makeup?
- Tips & Tricks for dressing up as a zombie yourself
- Party Zone and after-party entertainment
- Contests for zombies
- A family friendly event
- Dog & Cat zombies
- Favorite memories and moments of prior Zombie Walks
- Oldest and largest Zombie Walk in the world
- Growing from 89 zombies to close to 40,000
- The Devil’s favorite part and unsanctioned events at cemeteries…
- Working with the city of Louisville to put on the Zombie Walk
- The Devil’s Attic haunted attraction and how to keep the horror vibe going through Halloween
- The theme of the Devil’s Attic, makeup, and production
- Custom soundtrack locally produced
- Discounted tickets for the Devil’s Attic at the Louisville Zombie Walk
- Swag at the Louisville Zombie Walk
- DRESS UP AS A ZOMBIE!
Until Saturday, enjoy this Louisville Zombie Walk promo video, starring The Devil himself.
- Mike Pfaff
Episode 19 – Larry Elmore (Part 3)
Nerd Louisville sat down with legendary fantasy artist, Larry Elmore, for the podcast. We visited him at his home and studio in Leitchfield, KY. Larry was born in Louisville and holds a very special place in many nerds’ hearts for his evocative and immersive fantasy paintings. Larry is an incredibly gracious and kind host. He’s also a natural storyteller. Joe and I chatted with him for close to two hours, so we decided it’d be best to break this interview up into three parts.
Part One chronicles Larry’s upbringing and beginnings as a fantasy artist. We end right as Larry is hired to TSR, the company that created the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game.
In Party Two, Larry tells us about his time at TSR and working to become one of the best-known fantasy artists in the industry. He also tells us about freelancing, the physical toll it took on him, and his obsession with art.
In Part Three, Larry explains how he figured out the trick to freelancing, his success with Kickstarter, and new project he has in the pipe.
We hope you enjoy!
Part III Highlights:
- Figuring out how to freelance without killing yourself
- Digital tools for art and continuing to paint
- Collecting original works
- The evolution of Larry’s process for art
- Paiting at 100% instead of 70% and changing up style, experimenting
- SnarfQuest and “bigfoot” comics
- Self-publishing on Kickstarter and surpassing all expectations
- What’s “making it”?
- Nomination for HUGO Award
- Larry’s wife unfriending him on Facebook
- Keith Parkison and working together to get better
- Movies & CGI versus traditional art
- Breaking the traditional rules of cover art
- Earning your way up in D&D and the first Dragon Larry encountered in the game
- Inspiration for Joe’s favorite painting
- Larry’s website redesign and selling art online
- Mortality and painting
- Why Larry draws women more than men?
- A special new project where Larry wants to impact wisdom called Places of Power
- Writing more and publishing a book of stories
You can find some of Larry Elmore art at www.larryelmore.com.
- Mike Pfaff
- Joe Dunman