Backstory

Hosted by Alex Roberts, Backstory is an ongoing series of interviews with game designers, organizers, scholars, and other members of the role-playing community. This show is all about the person behind the work. What draws them to gaming? In what context do they work and play? What are they most excited about for the future? Alex loves getting to know people, and you’ll love coming along for the ride.

Alex Roberts is a giggling cutie who wants role-playing to be safe, healthy, and fun. She play tests, runs, and promotes live-action and tabletop games from her impenetrable ice spire in the frozen wastelands of Canada.

In a previous life she made and wrote about video games. At the moment, she is probably reading a very cute comic book.

39. Todd Nicholas

  Sociologist and podcast co-host Todd Nicholas joins us to talk making stuff, putting it out there, and encouraging other folks to do the same.

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38. Misha Bushyager

Writer, designer, and #Feminism co-editor Misha Bushyager joins us to talk worldbuilding, YouTube, and blending the personal and historical in game design. Also: Alex learns what a Steak-umm is.

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37. Graham Walmsley

In this episode: exciting announcements, horror and disco, tango and cooking, and award-winning game designer and author Graham Walmsley’s realizations about Lovecraftian gaming had while watching Iron Fist!

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36. Kimberley Lam

Stealth designer and prolific hacker Kim Lam joins Alex to talk playing by post, making games that aren’t products, and origami. We also discuss Kim’s upcoming larp about the legacy of the Cambodian genocide, so please listen with care.

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35. Brodie Atwater

Researcher and larpwright Brodie Atwater brings a lively perspective on larp accessibility, marginalization in gaming communities, and the importance of staying hydrated.

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34. Robert Bohl

Stick it to the man! Game designer Robert Bohl talks Misspent Youth, Demi-Humans, and Bitch Goddesses. A little SALT with your usual Backstory sweetness.

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33. Caitlynn Belle

Designer Caitlynn Belle joins Alex to talk about creating, refining, mentoring and problem solving. But more importantly: dying in space and bug sex.

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32. Emily Care Boss

Designer and theorist Emily Care Boss joins us this episode to talk Living Games, loving games, and being vulnerable in play. Can role-playing be therapeutic? How do we unite disparate gaming communities? What larp-adjacent practices can we learn from? What’s physi-ing??? You’ll have to tune in to find out! WISCON Site​ EMILY CARE BOSS The...

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31. Josh Jordan

Gather ’round as designer and educator Josh Jordan tells us about about the unstoppable force of creativity, candy as cultural exchange, and collaboration as the cure for impostor syndrome. Should larpwrights be keeping an eye on reality TV? Well, probably not, I guess…

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30. Maury Brown

Researcher, educator, writer, and President of LearnLarp LLC, Maury Brown joins Alex to talk safety, empowerment, and empathy in live-action play. If you’ve been curious about New World Magischola, come hear Maury describe the larp that’s not about being a wizard, but “becoming the kind of wizard you want to be.”

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