James and Kat discuss Splatoon, bicycles, magical fermentation, preserves, and Kobolds. That’s right. Someone was foolish enough to let James talk about Kobolds.

About the Author
James D’Amato, the world’s foremost Kobold advocate, moved to Chicago in 2010 to train at Second City and iO in the art of improvisational comedy. He now uses that education to introduce new people to role-playing, and teach die-hard Grognards new tricks.

16 comments on First Watch 2

  1. Alex Wilson says:

    I have to say, James, it was cute how you pronounced it Morris Code.

    1. I am fucking too precious for words.

      1. Alex Wilson says:

        This is definitely true.

  2. Shawn Wilson says:

    Kat- since you mentioned reading all the Star Wars books, I thought you might be interested in and might not already know about (it’s possible, if not really all that probable) some other classic science fiction I happen to be a fan of that might scratch that same itch-

    Little Fuzzy, by H. Beam Piper.

    This is flatly where Lucas stole his Ewoks from. Only ‘fuzzies’ aren’t childish and annoying. Despite the cuteness, not a children’s novel, as the main action derives from a human murdering one. Available on Gutenberg.

    Hoka, Hoka, Hoka! Poul Anderson and Gordon R. Dickson.

    More teddy bears. Short stories. They get exposed to terran media (westerns, mysteries, etc) and try to live it in real life. The hero is a human who tries to rein in the madness and gets caught up in it instead. Very funny.

    Lensman (Galactic Patrol, Gray Lensman, Second Stage Lensman, Children of the Lens (Triplanetary, First Lensman)) E. E. ‘Doc’ Smith. And this is where Lucas got his ideas for Jedi from. Classic space opera, by the man who invented the genre in these very books. Seriously, what Tolkien was to fantasy ‘Doc’ Smith was to Space Opera. Differences being that Lensmen abilities are artificial (aforementioned lens). Lensmen are telepathic rather than telekinetic. And Lensmen don’t go bad. Ever. The recommended reading order is as I have listed them here, though published series start the numbering with Triplanetary and First Lensman, which are later written prequels. Skip over those and concentrate on the Kim Kinnison books (you can actually skip Triplanetary altogether, as it’s earlier stories reworked to wedge them into the Lensman universe). And don’t read the recaps at the beginning. They give the plot away.

    Other books-

    Really ANYTHING by H. Beam Piper, one of my favorite authors. Especially The Cosmic Computer, Space Viking, Uller Uprising and Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen. All but the last available on Gutenberg.

    Robert Heinlein- Mostly his ‘juveniles’ (long story, wiki it) particularly Have Space Suit, Will Travel, Citizen of the Galaxy, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Tunnel in the Sky, and the ultra-classic Starship Troopers.

    Larry Niven (and Jerry Pournelle)- The Mote in God’s Eye, Protector, Footfall

    Erik Flint- 1632 (et al, series)

    David Weber- On Basilisk Station (et al, series), Mutineers Moon (et al, series).

    Harry Harrison- The Stainless Steel Rat (et al, series)

    Connie Willis- …To Say Nothing of the Dog, Doomsday Book

    Lois McMaster Bujold- The Warriors Apprentice (et al, series)

  3. Dan says:

    I think the MMO you were thinking of was Ragnarok Online. I played way too much of that.

    1. Thank you! I played a ton of it. They had dog shaped Kobolds. I think they also had dog kobold in Ever Quest.

  4. Bluebogle says:

    My introduction to Kobolds was in the first Quest for Glory game, which wasn’t too much like the D&D version. It was smallish, lived in a cave, and wore rags. It was also a powerful spell caster who had turned the Baron’s son into a bear to guard its cave (along with an ogre I think). Basically, it was crazy powerful, could one hit kill the hero, and had no tolerance for BS. Also, it ate cave fungus.

    Not too much like the D&D Kobold, which I probably couldn’t tell apart from a goblin if I were to actually meet one, anyway.

    Also, it’s really weird to imagine a Kobold laying an egg.

  5. Sparky says:

    Where can I find out more about this game that the Old Dragons play? I haven’t heard of it before and it sounds like something super interesting to put into one of my games.

    1. Donald Haase says:

      I’m wondering the same. Tried searching via phonetic transcription ‘Zorgenthal’? no dice though.

      1. Kat Kuhl says:

        Ah! Sorry I didn’t see this request earlier. The Great Game is called Xorvintaal.

  6. Max says:

    Hi, I’m really enjoying this podcast! In particular, the discussion about what a “real” high fantasy world would be like was super interesting.

    Would you mind providing links or citations for where the concepts you discuss came from? I’d love to be able to read through those sources when I have a minute…

    1. Let me try to dig them up. This was an essay collection I read years ago when one of my old Shadowrun buddies sent it to me.

  7. Dave says:

    Been a while but I must say I 100% agree with Kat on bicycles in fantasy.

    In a game I’m guest DM-ing (to give the real DM a break) I had the players visit a rich artificer uncle to one of the PCs. He has the money and the skills to engineer most anything I could think of, and for the most part no objections were raised:

    Invisible force fence with gate requiring palm-print recognition? Sure! An entire home lit, heated, and powered by tapping into the leyline it sits atop via finely worked brass tubing and sapphire gems? No problem! An autonomous robot bartender that looks like Robot B-9 and Tick Tock had a warforged baby? Love it! A self-rotating rotisserie large enough to hold an owlbear and that constantly spouts flames? Works for me! An arm cannon made by the uncle NPC that shoots fireballs and grease spells? Yup OK!

    Two wagon wheels attached to a triangular frame that one can perch atop and tool around the garden? Woah, slow down! The regular DM actually said “I think I will have to scale back the level of technology available in the setting. This is getting a bit out of hand.”

    So naturally, I smiled when Sprige showed up with a bike, and cheered when Kat addressed it here. Kudos!

  8. JustPlainJim says:

    I always love seeing these snippets into your guys’ lives. If nothing else it gives me another geeky influence in my life.

    If you haven’t heard of them, look up the Extra Credits team on Yourube. One of them is a character modeler/animator, and he did a nice discussion on the infamous Tracer pose, the new pose, and characterization in general.

    I feel James’ pain on Star Wars Battlefront. They lured me in with awesome training missions but then gave me an experience that boils down to walking for three seconds and then being killed by an aimbot. Repeat until my team loses.
    I have been incredibly iffy on Overwatch because I was never that good at Team Fortress or PvP-only games like Battlefront. But the style is pulling me in, about like Heroes of the Storm did. I may not like playing a class, but I’m starting to think I’d enjoy playing a Character. Especially one so packed with life.

    I’ve heard that things are getting better for women in games (regarding voice chat), but given my experiences playing Halo 3 with women, saying something is “better” doesn’t mean much. I’m curious to see if the situation is approaching “good”, though I’m sure it varies by game.

    Stay classy, guys! Looking forward to seeing your panel at GenCon!

    1. JustPlainJim says:

      Why did this not go to June/July? -_-;
      Stupid internet…

  9. Sean Cunningham says:

    I just wanted to give James some appreciation for the Heralds of Galactus reference at around 6 minutes in. Kat left you hanging there, but I caught it and I loved it.

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