HJRP1218 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 18



Your hosts: Stu, Stork, Kimi, Tyler

Show Notes! Joel in Sweden didn’t like a comment we made about GM fun vs Player fun. We discuss this in-depth.

Andrew asks for some ways to freshen up the Tolkien races. Goodmush asks about building scenes. ET writes in about games that use dual hit point systems. Useless Trivial Man gives us a report from Xenocon about his Grindhouse gladiatorial game.

Andrew from Yorkshire sets us straight on English caravaning. Dan writes in with some GURPS love. James from Michigan treats us to a nightmare.

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HJRP1217 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 17



Your hosts: Stu, Stork, CADave and Kimi

Email us at happyjacksrpg at gmail dot com.

Show Notes!  We get a brief recap of Gateway 2014. Anthony writes in about a conundrum where his players are going through a location of great interest, but he doesn’t want them to get distracted from their current goals.  Clockwork Monk asks for some advice about running an online game (via Google Hangout). Jeff in Appleton asks for some GURPS specific questions, and here are two links Stu mentioned:

The Natural Encyclopedia (a free monster manual like document for GURPS 4th).

The GURPS 4th Edition Sorter (this tool allows you to determine which advantages, disadvantages and skills are either required, allowed or forbidden in your game, after you’ve gone through the list, it produces a document you can hand your players so they know what’s legal).

Nate in Oklahoma asks us about handling space ship battles in a hard science fiction setting, and especially, how to keep the whole party involved. Moonday asks us how to handle a DnD Encounters player who sulks when his character dies. Goodmush ask how to make player backgrounds meaningful in a military game.

DJ presents us with a video entitled the Shandification of Fallout, which explores the linear and nonlinear storytelling. Willow asks us what game to run at her work’s “funtivity” for non-gamer co-workers. And Grant from Saving the Game asks us how to make a gaming story interesting.

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HJRPPE01 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Penalty Episode 01



Your host: Stu

This is a solo episode I recorded about six weeks ago. I’m putting it up now, as a few listeners have suggested people who only listen to the show (and do not engage us on the forum or social media) might think we podfaded. This is not the case.

The show will restart when I am able to make it happen.

– Stu

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HJRP1216 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 16 Live from Gateway 2014


This episode of Happy Jacks was recorded live at Gateway 2014. Our normal show schedule will resume on Friday, September 19th.

NOTE: At about 85 minutes, the audio recorder filled up, and Bill recorded the last 11 minutes or so on his iPhone.

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HJRP1215 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 15


happy_jacks_all_ages300x300-150x150Your hosts: Stu, Stork, JiB, Gina

Show Notes! We discuss preparing for the unprepared — for those moments when the preparation for the game you thought you were going to run suddenly becomes irrelevant.

Len from Miami makes the statement: players who intentionally throw wrenches in the GM’s plans are douchebags. We discuss. Michael writes us about his take on distracted players. Rob writes in about finding it difficult to get enthused about an ongoing Pathfinder game.

Charles writes in about GM Burnout. The Reverend Doctor Minnesota Gooch writes in with his mathematical analysis of the advantage/disadvantage dice mechanic in DnD 5E. His analysis can be found on a PDF linked on our forum.

George writes in about playing with a group that doesn’t really want to role-play and also asks for some advice about running a campy pulp SciFi Ocean’s 11 type game.

Aaron writes in with a gaming success story and Robbie writes in with a gaming nightmare.


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HJRP1214 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 14



Your Hosts: Stu, Twin, Mowi and Aya

Links Mentioned:

True Neutral Comic

Sportive Tricks (featured song at the end).

Order of the Stick


Show Notes! Dan asks about going from small idea to whole scenario, which we discuss at length. He also ask about running GURPS for the first time. Larsson writes in about Order of the Stick (link above). Ross is running a class called “How to be a Game Master” for his FLGS and wants some advice.

Jakub in Poland gives some suggestions to get players to use bennies (this is in response to an email from Seth a few weeks ago). Carl hits on a couple topics: how do I get back stories from my players; how to handle the min/maxer; and an offer for Rogue Trader.

Andrew asks about running a game for all women. Rob writes in about his RPG group and their run-in with the Law. N. Eric writes in about GM ennui.


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The 2014 RPG Podcasters Awards

Announcing the 2014 RPG Podcasters Peer Awards

The RPG Podcasters Community would like to recognize the following RPG podcasts for excellence in entertainment, content and production quality for the year 2014.

For Best New Podcast for 2014: Numenera: The Signal –  http://numenerathesignal.blogspot.com/

For Best Actual Play Podcast for 2014: RPPR Actual Play -http://actualplay.roleplayingpublicradio.com/

For Best Industry News Podcast for 2014: All Games Considered -http://www.agcpodcast.info/

For Best Podcast of 2014: Fear the Boot – http://www.feartheboot.com/ftb/

The RPG Podcasters Community on Google+ is open to all producers and hosts of podcasts covering the tabletop RPG hobby. This community established the RPG Podcasters Peer Awards this year to recognize the best shows, whether members of the community or not, based on the opinions of people who are familiar with the production process of such podcasts.

All nominations and awards were determined by vote among the members of this community. If you produce or host a tabletop RPG podcast, you may join this community by going to tinyurl.com/rpgpodcasters.

We would like to congratulate all of the winners for a job well-done. All award winners will not be eligible for awards in the same categories for the 2015 awards.


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HJRP1213 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 13


happy_jacks_all_ages300x300-150x150Your hosts: Stu, Stork and JiB

Links mentioned:

Gateway 2014 August 29 – September 1.

Bristol Renaissance Faire – the Merry Wives of Windsor are playing there this weekend only (August 9th and 10th). If you’re in Wisconsin, go up and say ‘hi.’

Happy Jacks T-Shirts are no available at the Angryfolk.com webstore.

Mook has published a book for Steve Jackson Games – How to Be a GURPS GM.

Show Notes! We spend about 15 minutes discussing way to come up with meaningful NPCs on the fly — that is, what information we need to determine characterization and where to get it.

Mathew writes in about running his first SW adventure for some folks new to the system. Matthew (that’s with two Ts) ask about a situation that came up where one of his long-time players reacted very badly to the actions of a character in the game.

Dave from Michigan sends in a gaming horror story where the players had to roll up classes and races randomly to build characters for a game that resulted in a near TPK when the plot took a turn off the rails.

Robert in Texas writes in with some praise for the show (and thank you for the monitor controller, Robert!). Andreas asks about games that quantify characterizations elements of a PC and if they might be good “training” to make players betters “actors” at the table. He also suggests Alderac’s Toolbox and Ultimate Toolbox, which are books chock full o’ random tables, to develop ideas for game stories.

JimTo writes in about a not fun game of Toon at a convention. Bakomusha tells us about his Shadowrun 5E game, where he awarded XP to players who broke with their routine and did crazy stuff during combat.

Ben writes about a very large gaming group that shrank and then grew again, asking for advice on how to handle this situation. And Eric asks for some advice on a Star Wars/horror game and also shares how the show has helped him.

Finally, we discuss (at length!) the results thus far from the Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Listener Survey.



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HJRP1212 Happy Jacks RPG Podcast Season 12 Episode 12


Your hosts: Stu, Stork, Bill

Listen to Stu and Stork on this week’s episode of the Misdirected Mark Podcast. Join us at Strategicon’s Gateway 2014 August 29th through Sept 1.

Link mentioned: a Quite Year by Buried Without Ceremony.

Show Notes! We discuss raising the stakes in combat and other ways to keep combat dramatic and interesting. Bill from Arizona ask us about how much a player should respect the GM’s prearranged story (ie rails) in a convention game.

Josh D Nobody asks about some pedantry. K shares an epic PC death story. Mycroft apologizes for the length of his email.

Simon ask for advice about an amazingly dysfunctional gaming group. And Stefan from Germany tells a story about a player bullying a GM, killing the game.


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CONSPIR03 Happy Jacks RPG Actual Play Game 06 Session 03 – Moment of Truth: Conspiratorium



GM: Stu Venable

System: Moment of Truth (pre-release playtest 1.9)

Players: Stork, CADave, JiB and Gina.

This is the third session of the Moment of Truth: Conspiratorium playtest.

Props presented to the players can be found at angryfolk.com/rpg/approps.

Notice: Our actual play session are UNEDITED. While we try to minimize them, sometimes these recordings will contain interruptions and tangental conversations. You have been duly warn’d.


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