Episode 130 – Arkady & Boris Strugatsky’s “Hard to Be a God” with special guest Aaron King

Aaron King joins us to discuss Arkady & Boris Strugatsky’s “Hard to Be a God”, West Marches-style gaming, fantasy bestiaries, impecunious dons, astronauts in the middle ages, the character arcs of doomed nobles, the inherent tension that exists from generation to generation, keeping each other safe in the dirt, playing with Barbies, Warhammer 40K, characters using their imagination to see their future, our patron book clubs, and much more!

Hard to Be a God

Episode 129 – Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Farthest Shore” with special guest Joshua Phillip Johnson

Joshua Phillip Johnson joins us to discuss Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Farthest Shore”, elves named Josh, media being smarter than us, Audible audiobooks, hanging in Hort Town, magic being leached from the world, ideas of power and kingship, the importance of mentorship, journeying from the quiet places to the places where stuff happens, adult themes in YA lit, warriors’ powers being looked at as magic, the reason for the season, and much more!

The Farthest Shore

Episode 128 – Neil Gaiman’s “Neverwhere” with special guest Jim Hall

Jim Hall joins us to discuss Neil Gaiman’s “Neverwhere”, art school, crunchy combat, time loops, manic pixie dream girls, the Tony Blair-era of the UK, addressing audience needs, ideas for the sequel, using the Floating Market in an Underdark campaign, journeying into the underworld, D&D as a combat game, his monthly zine, and much more!

Neverwhere

Patron Book Club 127 – Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror” with our Patron Book Club (Part 2)

Our Patron Book Club joins us to discuss Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror”, art pull-outs in paperbacks, the de Camp vs the Karl Edward Wagner introductions, sword and sorcery tropes, Conan’s Greatest Hits, Shakespearean battles, Conan in disguise as a headsman, wanting to spend more time in Stygia, the dangers on the left path, mummy tour guides, smaller villains, August Derleth’s landscapes, Savage Worlds RPG, The Tower of the Elephant, and much more!

Conan the Conquerer Sphere

Patron Book Club 127 – Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror” with our Patron Book Club (Part 1)

Our Patron Book Club joins us to discuss Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror”, the terrible glue on Lancer paperbacks, Howard’s attempts to reach the English audience, the reach of Weird Tales Magazine, Conan’s anti-colonialist stance, Howard’s horror writing, de Camp’s editing, vampires, evil priests, killer illusions, the Hyborian Age as a living and breathing world, Call of Cthulhu RPG for sword and sorcery, and much more!

Hour of the Dragon

Episode 127 – Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror” with special guest Eric Johnson

Eric Johnson joins us to discuss Robert E. Howard’s “Conan the Conqueror”, artists to draw visual inspiration from, de Camp’s editorial choices, the rabbit hole of research involved in writing historical fiction, The People of the Black Circle, 10,000 year old hotties, Howard’s attitudes toward civilization, The Whole Wide World, Mystara, A Song of Ice and Fire, evil temples packed with unspeakable horrors, Raymond Chandler, and much more!

Conan the Conquerer

Episode 126 – William Hope Hodgson’s “Carnacki the Ghost-Finder” with special guest James Mendez Hodes

James Mendez Hodes joins us to discuss William Hope Hodgson’s “Carnacki the Ghost-Finder”, Sonic the Hedgehog fandom, changing conversations around cultural appropriation, Harlem detectives, Greek translations, disembodied limbs, the journey down the magical hog hole, Arthur Conan Doyle stories, the Trail of Cthulhu RPG, avoiding stereotypes when playing races other than your own, GMs falling asleep at the table, offers to help with high school projects, and much more!

Carnacki

Episode 125 – Michael Shea’s “A Quest for Simbilis” with special guest Jason Cordova

Jason Cordova joins us to discuss Michael Shea’s “A Quest for Simbilis”, Powered by the Apocalypse games, the correct pronunciation of Cugel, gothic horror, the publishing world in the 1970s, Lovecraftian horror fiction, high stakes games of strip poker, moving from absurdity to horror in an instant, crunchier traditional game systems, comedic hijinks, high fantasy vs sword and sorcery, fantasy fiction in the 80s and 90s, and much more!

A Quest for Simbilis

Episode 124 – Michael Moorcock’s “The Knight of the Swords” with special guest Stefan Surratt

Stefan Surratt joins us to discuss Michael Moorcock’s “The Knight of the Swords”, other aspects of worldbuilding, uncaring beings of great power, loss of innocence, fantasy genocides, the Dresden bombings, the Vadaugh as elves, Daniel J. Bishop magic items, gods with cool and specific spheres of influence, the Lords of Law, our Patreon, and much more!

The Knight of the Swords

Episode 123 – Fritz Leiber’s “The Knight and Knave of Swords” with special guest Ahimsa Kerp

Ahimsa Kerp joins us to discuss Fritz Leiber’s “The Knight and Knave of Swords”, Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser in Riverside, ooh naughty sexy times, sex-obsessed adventurers, the city of Lankhmar, transgressive swords and sorcery, aging characters in fantasy RPGs, moon priestesses, pushing luck mechanics, having identifiably unique cultures, mythic Greece, and much more!

The Knight and Knave of Swords