Board Game Podcasts. If you haven’t checked these out, you should totally download them and listen to them on your commute!
I am a Podcast Addict.
I listen to podcasts… daily. I’m currently subscribed to 32 podcasts and have subscribed to as many as 61. (I culled when I realized there was no way I could keep up with all the new content).
I play podcasts while washing the dishes. Making a meal. I even wear dorky earmuffs over my earbuds when I mow my yard, so I can listen to a podcast without blasting myself into an early need of hearing aids.
Most of all, podcasts have been my lifesaver (figuratively) on loooong road trips. For example: once or twice a year my lovely wife and I drive from Southwest Florida to visit family and friends in Central New York. It’s just over a 1,400 mile drive and my wife and I split it up 50/50. And by 50/50 I mean she drives for 2-4 hours and I drive the other 18-20. That’s a lot of podcasts.
We’ll be gearing up for that trip again soon, so as I was brainstorming content for Art of Boardgaming I thought I’d let you know what board game podcasts I’ll be listening to as the mile markers fly by.
My 10 Favorite Board Game Podcasts (In No Particular Order)
This is my road trip/chore day podcast. New episodes come out once a week and most of them last 2-3 hours… Yes… hours.
DON’T STOP READING!
Here’s the thing. The Secret Cabal is made up of a group of guys who love games, love pod-casting, and have an obvious camaraderie that makes you want to be part of their circle of friends… and somehow, you also feel that way after you’ve listened to a few of their episodes. Beyond that, the show is SUPER entertaining!
So yes, the show can last 3 hours, but I tell ya, as the passing stripes roll hypnotically beneath my wheels, the 3 hours of the Secret Cabal somehow speed up time.
You know how they say somethings get better with age? Well, some friendships can fall into that category too.
Let me introduce you to Marty and Tony of Rolling Dice and Taking Names. These guys have been friends since college and much like a fine wine, gourmet cheese, or a moonpie, their rapport has gained an exceptional quality through the years, and years, and years. Ok… They’re not THAT old.
Seriously though, Marty and Tony have a fantastic, family friendly, sense of humor that makes their show, and their twitter account, an absolute pleasure to follow. I’ve never met them in person, but I would jump at the chance to sit around a table and play games with them. They’re great podcasters and from what I can tell, even better people. I’ll be subscribed to this show as long as it exists – and you should be too.
“Come for the games, stay for the game night grub.” That’s something you’re apt to hear on this podcast. (Along with “Dip it. Dip it. Chip. Chip. Taco. Taco.”).
Spencer and Lara Williams of Married with Board Games are the total #RelationshipGoals package. At some point, Spencer sucked Lara into gaming, and as if that weren’t enough, he also convinced her to start a Podcast, do videos, and even go to board game conventions about the hobby.
Basically, she’s become a full blown convert to Board Game Geekery – and the hobby is better because both of them are in it. Their podcast usually get’s listened to it THE DAY it comes out (which is usually every once every two weeks).
Hail Hydra! Ok – to be honest, I had to look that up to see what it meant after hearing Sean end the show with it every single episode. Do I have to hand in my Geek Card?
Anyway, The Dukes of Dice, hosted by Sean, and currently AWOL Alex comes to your ears straight from Albuquerque, New Mexico. I love this podcast for the way they discuss board games, and for their amazingly simple, yet effective rating system for their game reviews.
They are always super up-beat, interesting, and entertaining. If you subscribe to this one, within 2 or 3 episodes you’ll feel like you’re one of their friends who’s in on all the inside jokes, including every first mention of Baseball Highlights 2045.
These guys are pretty new to the podcasting scene, and by new – I mean they’ve only done 8 episodes at the time of this writing. But, and I may have buried the lead here, go check them out… and start on episode… 8: Scythe.
Because I’M ON IT!
Ok, got that little bit of excitement out. Yes, they asked me to be a guest on the Playing Rough Podcast, and it was an absolute blast.
Along with having some of the best intro and outro music I have ever heard, these guys take a dive into the strategy in their gaming. Each podcast focuses on a game and they walk through not only the overview of the game, but strategies to consider while playing the game as well.
They have a variety of “Recurring” segments as well, one of which featured a discussion on “How to Host a Small Game Night” which, incidentally, is how I discovered the show.
Nicole, Adrienne, and Erin are also bringing a relatively new podcast to my ears called Greatway Games, and I don’t see myself unsubscribing anytime soon.
As I dissected why I enjoyed each of these various shows, I realized that for me the draw to Greatway (Other than the awesome hosts) is their topic selection and engaging discussion. From Gaming Comfort Zones, to Unpacking the Pile of Shame, and the Pros of Cons (Ha… PUN!), these three women cover exactly what they say in their tagline – Games, Culture, and Everything in-between.
Ambie, Cassadi, and Crystal are just about to hit their 1 year anniversary.
When I first started listening to the Board Game Blitz I just assumed that they were all good friends who lived in the same town and got together to record their cool show. I was shocked when I heard them mention recently that they were going to be meeting up… for the first time!
The chemistry between the hosts is fantastic and I love that their episodes are 25-30 minutes long. Makes it good for a morning run, or to break up those 3 hour Secret Cabal episodes on a loooong drive.
Their reviews are short and sweet, their topics interesting, and their banter engaging!
The Cardboard Architects Podcast is my inspiration podcast. Chris, and Joe (Or Chris and Frank on the pub-cast episodes) talk about board game design. In other words, how to design, playtest, get and give feedback, launch, market, kickstart, and everything else about creating your own board game.
One of my favorite episodes that they will do from time to time is the Designer Hotseat Challenge. In the DHC they take turns giving each other mechanics & themes and then they have to develop a game on the fly.
It’s crazy, fun, and like I said, inspiring. Generally when I listen to the CBA podcast my mind ends up drifting off to a couple game designs that I have on the back burner of my brain. How I could improve them, what mechanics I should try, and maybe whether or not I should re-theme it to something else. Before I know it, I realize the episode is ending but I only remember the 1st half of the show… but I keep coming back again and again because they show is great, and the inspiration is even better.
This one falls into a similar category as Cardboard Architects. While it’s not about design, Tony, Ian, and Gill of Breaking Into Board Games all bring their experience in the board game industry to the table as they bring on guest after guest to discuss various topics.
Now, these guests are not your average Joes. (Sorry Playing Rough… You guys got stuck with an average Joe.) Instead, they interview designers like Rob Daviau, Chip Beauvais, Daniel Solis. They talk to publishers like Riot Games who put out the wildly successful release of Mechs vs Minions.. They also bring on artists, and so many others from the board game industry.
Between the three of them and their innumerable guests, they provide a wealth of information to anyone who is thinking about turning board games into something more than just a hobby. They also close out their show with a game called “2 Truths and a Lie.” I only hope that someday, I can play that game on their show.
They advertise themselves as The All-Stuff, No-Fluff, and the Just Long Enough Board Gaming Podcast.
Truth in advertising.
The Five By is a pure review podcast. It’s 5 hosts: Lindsay, Mason, Mike, Ruth, and Stephanie each review an individual game in 5 minutes or less giving you an overview of 5 games in 25 minutes. You really can’t beat that efficiency.
I listen to this podcast for exactly what it is… the reviews. I love to hear the quick insight of other gamers as I agonize over what games I’ll buy in a year, what ones I’ll hope to play someone else’s copy of, and what ones I’ll pretty much avoid. The Five By helps give me information along those lines! And I can’t think of another podcast that goes through that many games every. single. episode.
So that’s it!
Those are the podcasts that will be helping me as I’m traveling up I75, across I10, up I95, diagonally via I26, through moonpie central on I77, and then taking the long final leg of the journey on Interstate 81. Podcasts are awesome. They let me bring a ton of friends… digitally along for the ride. Saves me from having to trade in the hatchback for a minibus.
How About You? What are some of Your Favorite Podcasts?
Want To Check Out Some Other Board Game Related Lists?
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