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Feb 21 2012

Podcast Addict: The D6 Generation

Question: Is the D6 Generation an RPG podcast, a board game podcast, a miniatures game podcast, or a video game podcast.

Answer: All of the above

Response from Questioner: You’d think after listening to over fifty of the D6G’s episodes that’d be right. Well due to not listening to the other 40ish episodes you have gaps in your knowledge and are WRONGGGGG!!!!!! The D6 Generation isn’t just a gaming podcast but Craig Gallant’s and Russ Wakelin’s bid for global domination. If you’ve paid attention at all these two have conscripted, cajoled, and coerced numerous people in the gaming industry to talk with them and send  products their way. They take these promo copy’s and give’em away in insane contests asking listeners to build diorama’s (to be fair that one was Raef’s “Hollywood” Granger’s idea but Russ and Craig didn’t stop him) or produce mini audio drama’s for there amusement. That doesn’t count the sponsor’s from all over the gaming world giving them stuff, some which produce Kevlar bags (I’m telling you they’re getting ready to out fit an army or maybe store an army) and they have a base where they meet to plan their world dominating machinations in the form of Myriad Games. I’m sure Dan from Myriad opened up his second store so they could store more gear for the global take over. It’s coming folks. They’re lone wolves, working like (or for) Spartan’s as they prepare for the day when they can show everyone their Warmachine’s and take over the world.

That’s a short taste of how a D6 Generation episode starts. They call the segment Rapid Fire with Geekly McNerdigan. Craig Gallant takes a few shots of adrenalin, dons his McNerdigan persona, and blasts Russ Wakelin and whoever’s in the rotating third host chair with questions relating to the topics covered in the show. Next comes the “Hello” intro where Russ and Craig say “hello” in interesting and poorly musical ways with the third chair chiming in or being taken off guard as Cody and John from Game On with Cody and John were in episode 97. After introductions they roll into

ACHIEVEMENTS IN GAMING

GAMING

gaming

gaming

gaming

There’s always an echo effect. They like the echo effect. In any case, Achievements in Gaming gives the hosts a chance to talk about the games they’ve been playing since the last show without getting into a deeper review. They save the deeper review for a later segment. They cover games played, what they’ve been up to in Modeling, such as putting together or painting models, and any terrain they might be building. Craig is really skilled at this stuff, he’s built a ton of terrain and tables for wargaming, but my favorite is the wild west town he put together for a game called Gut Shot. I wouldn’t care how much the game sucks if I’m playing on a table like that. After Modeling comes the Other section where they hit any video games, books, and other interesting geek culture stuff they’ve been up to.

The rest of the show is split up into six segments, four mini segments and two main segments, the first main segment is something to do with gaming or the industry, for example they do interviews with a gaming personality or designer. Another segment they’ve done more than once is called Mulling Mechanics where they break down the mechanics of war games, board games, or RPG’s and take a look at how they work and how they might be improved. One of my favorites is Inside the Podcaster’s Studio, a fun parody of Inside the Actors Studio where former host Raef “Hollywood” Granger takes the persona of the fictional Peter Lipton, yes folks, that’s a play on James Lipton, and asks Russ and Craig a bunch of “interesting” and “diverse” questions. Pretty much anything is up for grabs in this segment. The second main segment is a review of a game where they really get into whatever game they’re talking about beginning with how it sounds when they open the box, book, or tin. They examine the components and their quality along with the rule book, this is very important to the D6G. A good rule book can shift a rating a whole point in these reviews. They cover game play, pretty much explaining how to play the game so you don’t have to read the rule book and finish with some strategies they’ve seen before giving their ratings using the patent pending D6G rating system. It’s mathematically flawed and immensely interesting when Russ starts adding in his derivations on his d6 roll rating. What’s the rating system? I’ll tell you at the end when I rate the D6 Generation using their own system.

In between and acting as bookends to the two main segments are four others; The News, The Hollywood Minute, Total Fan Girl, and Do You Ever Noticed. The News has News guy, I don’t think he’s ever been named but it isn’t Russ since a hyperactive Russ will always pipe in his two cents about a story or two. It’s an informative segment with humor that’s not too shabby and a nice presses rolling sound effect in the background. The Hollywood Minute is by Raef Granger so he’s still a regular part of the podcast if not a regular host. This is random Raef’s chance to talk about whatever he feels like. Sometime’s it’s comics, other times the games he’s playing, online and off. I especially like any time he talks about practicing law since he’s a lawyer and last time I checked was working privately as an IP lawyer for hire for game companies and publishers. Total Fan Girl is by Nicole Wakelin and deals with nifty little things going on in the gaming world generally, but not always, concerning women in gaming, you can check more of her stuff out on the Geek Girls Network or at her blog at totalfangirl.com. And last but not least is Craig Gallant’s segment Do You Ever Notice. It’s Craig’s chance to make some introspective commentary on the things he notices in the world around him. It’s the shows last segment, and a nice way to to wrap things up since he starts it off with Geekly McNerdigan’s Rapid Fire. It gives the show a cyclical feeling, almost like a hero’s journey. You’ve traveled the great expanse known as the D6Generation, arrived at the place you began, but are not the same, having grown in knowledge and gameitude.

The Rating

So now I need to explain the rating system of the D6 Generation. I’ll be giving the show a rating from 2+ to 6+. What that means is if I gave a podcast like The Bear Swarm a +3 any average listener would like the Bear Swarm on a d6 roll of 3 or higher. For some reason, that makes no mathematical sense, I can assign a re-roll which equates to a half, don’t ask me why, it’s not my rating system. Onward to my rating.

I think the D6 Generation is one of the best produced gaming podcast’s out there. The sound quality and production are top notch. The ad’s, and yes there are ad’s in there for the sponsors, are entertaining and great bumpers between the segments. The content is also exceptional. The reviews are honest; they won’t review games they think are bad, they walk you through the rules, they give you their opinion, then try to look at the game from the average gamer’s view point, and rate it from both perspectives. The segments are entertaining and the humor is “Not to shabby” as Russ always says at the end of the podcast after thanking the listeners for making it to the end of another episode of the D6 generation. I really appreciate the focus and format. It’s consistent and there’s something nice about hosts who don’t wander off point to much. Finally there’s the chemistry Russ and Craig have. They’re good friends, which comes through in their conversations, and well spoken. They also have a knack for making the third host or any interviewee feel comfortable and part of what’s going on. I can’t think of a single interview I didn’t enjoy even if I wasn’t interested in the subject matter because I love stories about people and Craig and Russ manage to get people to tell them. It is a long podcast but with today’s technology you can listen to it in chunks. If you think about it each segment is a mini podcast so in a single episode you’re actually getting eight of them. In the end I’m giving the D6 Generation a 2+ but no re-roll. In breaking with tradition I’m thinking the re-roll means give it a second listen if you didn’t like it the first time. In the D6G’s case I feel if you don’t like it the first time I don’t think you will with a second listen. I’m also guessing you don’t like podcast’s or games if you don’t like what these guys are doing so go check them out. You won’t be sorry.

Later

Chris “The Light” Sniezak

1 comment

  1. Ken Romero

    So I have been looking for the means to send them review copies. I cannot for the life of me find where or how to do that on their site or anywhere else. I do not suppose you know the “send to” address?

    Kenneth Romero
    Active Minds Games, Inc.

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