Bonus Episode 10 – Fear the Con X Review

It’s a special bonus episode this week, as Jenny and Peter recap their Fear the Con experiences! Peter also recently wrote about his very emotional slot 6 game, and if you haven’t read that yet, you really should. Special thanks to everyone involved in planning and producing Fear the Con; everyone we gamed with; and everyone who helped with the charity drive for Pat this year!

Also, our apologies for any audio issues in this episode; this was recorded on a single microphone designed for one person, so there was a lot of handing the mic back and forth. (On the other hand, this was recorded on Jenny’s new audio equipment, so look forward to a better sound from her on future episodes!)

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Episode 112 – Playing Above and Below Your Ability

Grant, Peter, and Jenny discuss playing characters who are much better—or much worse—at things than you yourself are! This topic was selected by our Patreon backers, whom we’re very grateful for and who bring you this show every other week. First, though, we spend some time discussing Fear the Con X (which was last weekend, and which Peter and Jenny will run down next episode.) We also briefly discuss Overwatch and Dead Cells. We answer a question about wargaming from Patreon backer Kevin, and then get down to business—which includes a lengthy rant from Grant, and a surprising amount of bickering!

Mentioned in this episode:

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Episode 111 – LARP and the Psychology of Play (with Dr. Sarah Lynne Bowman)

Psychology researcher, professor, and LARPer Dr. Sarah Lynne Bowman joins us for a fascinating discussion of LARP and the psychology of play and roleplaying! Sarah had an enormous amount of information to pass along to us about different styles of live-action roleplay, terminology and concepts in LARP and in the psychology of play, the seeming dichotomy between tabletop and live-action play, and so much more. It’s a bit less organized than many of our episodes, simply because we let Sarah take charge of much of the conversation, but we definitely think it turned out better for that! (And check below for a long list of links Sarah provided for us.)

We also answer a question from Patreon supporter Paige, who wanted to know how much time we spend each week on tabletop gaming; briefly discuss Overwatch; and mention

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Episode 110 – Spiritual Warfare (with Rev. Derek White)

The Rev. Derek White, longtime friend of the show and known to the Internet as “The Geekpreacher”, joins us once again to discuss spiritual warfare! After introducing Derek (and letting him plug GaryCon), we turn our attention to some important information about fake beards and Fear the Con. Peter and Jenny will be wearing fake beards (ridiculous, nonsensical fake beards, to be clear) to Fear the Con in support of Pat Roper (one of Fear the Boot’s hosts) and his ongoing treatment for Stage 3 pancreatic cancer. We also pass on the news of a listener’s new game,

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Episode 109 – Visual Character Descriptions, Part 2 (with Krissi Woodward)

We continue our discussion with Krissi Woodward about clothing and visual character descriptions! We pick back up with discussions of cultural and vocational costume, and move on to the effects of technology on what people wear and look like. We then spend a fair bit of time on modesty (and fair warning: While we don’t get obscene, this section does get fairly frank about the human body, so if you’re particularly sensitive keep that in mind.) Then after a few more notes (and mention of the Aghori, who are absolutely fascinating; Poche Posh and

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Episode 109 – Visual Character Descriptions, Part 1 (with Krissi Woodward)

Krissi Woodward—Grant’s wife and costume designer—joins us once again to discuss visual character descriptions in our game, and especially clothing! We have a couple of announcements related to our Weekend Reading series and our Patreon question rewards. Then we tackle a question from Patreon backer gfactor, who asks about electronic apps or devices which might enhance the tabletop play experience.

With that handled, we begin breaking down the importance of describing character appearances in our games. Grant leads off with a potentially controversial statement about character portraits and minis, which leads us into why players are often hesitant to delve into this at all. Then we go deep into the rabbit hole […]

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Episode 108 – The Third Commandment (Ten Commandments, Part 3)

Grant, Peter, and Jenny return to discuss the Third Commandment! There’s quite a lot of banter and catching up to do first, of course, and we banter about illness, the forthcoming Amonkhet set in Magic: The Gathering, Snafu Brewing and TRAPPIST-1, and more. We also have a doozy of a question from Patreon backer Richard, who asks us for our favorite stories from the table. Thankfully, we get to respond in kind! (This also gives us an excuse to mention Tooning Japanese in passing, by the way. […]

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Episode 107 – Relics and Holy Items

This episode, we tackle a surprisingly complicated topic: Relics and holy items! Grant’s out sick, what with his entire house having been struck by plagues of all sorts, so Jenny and Peter have the mics to themselves. For our Patreon question, they get handed a very tough question from Jared—”What was the most rewarding campaign you ever ran or played in?”—which takes a bit to answer. Then after our Scripture, it’s on to our main topic. We discuss Catholic and Orthodox traditions around relics to lay some groundwork before moving on to talking about the use of relics in our own games: How they might work in certain sorts of settings; what to do with them; and what to do about fakes. Also, a helpful warning: Never go full Blackleaf.

Mentioned in this episode: Two Atlas Obscura articles,

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Episode 106 – Limiting Evil

After over two years as a two-person show, Saving the Game is proud to announce our new permanent host Jenny Dickson! This is her first episode, and she’ll be joining us going forward.

The episode starts off with an introduction of Jenny and then moves into our Patreon question about hacks and drifts, and then the three of us dig into our main topic: limiting the evil of villains in games. We cover why to do it, how to do it, and what effects it has on the story you’re telling.

Scripture: Exodus 5:6-8, Judges 3:13-14, Revelation 3:14-19

Links: High-Heel-Face Turn on tvtropes […]

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Episode 105 – Exploration

Grant and Peter are back to talk about exploration as a major feature in RPGs! First, a bit of sad news from Peter; then, we spend a bit of time talking about Grant’s Fellowship game, and how strange the system feels to him. We also answer a fun question from Patreon backer Jim, who asks what little, almost insignificant feature factors into our decision-making when we buy cars.

After our Scripture readings, we delve deep into our main topic, discussing why exploration is fun and why it matters; what sorts of characters might be motivated to explore unknown territory; how to set up random or incidental encounters so that they don’t feel artificial; a brief discussion of hex crawls; and sources of inspiration for wilderness and exploration encounters.

This episode topic was selected by our Patreon supporters, who bring you this show every two weeks and help us make the show better. If you’d like to help support us on Patreon,

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