I’ve really been enjoying the podcast scene lately, and gaming podcasts in particular. For those who don’t know what a podcast is, think of it as talk radio on-demand. Pick a topic, pick a program that will aggregate all the files (I use iTunes) and have a listen. They’re like blogs with a human voice. Gaming podcasts are plentiful and there’s one for just about every aspect of gaming. There are podcasts for specific games, specific consoles, and just about everything else under the sun.
Read on for my Podcast Playlist.
I try to limit my playlist to ten podcasts, but I just added EQ2 Daily so for the time being I decided to keep the rest along with this new one.
On to the list:
11 – Gpinions Radio (iTunes Link) – Even though I try to have ten podcasts, I’m keeping Gpinions Radio around because Nick and Tom are obviously well versed in the video game canon and are always intersting to listen to. I love reading their blog and their podcast is just an extension of it.
10 – Dean and Nooch (iTunes Link) – These popular video game journalists and bloggers at San Jose Mercury News have an interesting podcast. Usually short, sweet and to the point. Very easy listen and very informative.
8 – Penny Arcade’s Downloadable Content (iTunes Link) – This really isn’t a podcast in the purest sense (whatever that means) and is updated very infrequently, but it is a hoot to listen to. It’s basically the Penny Arcade guys recording their brainstorming sessions while they come up with their comic ideas. Sound quality sucks but it’s hilarious otherwise.
6 – Evil Avatar (iTunes Link) – Another podcast that took awhile for me to get used to but has really grown on me. They have a lot of Evil Avatar “inside jokes” that I never really got, but once you get past that, it’s another good source of gaming news.
Justin Phil (Kefkataran from the site) has a good presence and his interviews are top-notch.
The Top Five
5 – Major Nelson (iTunes Link) – Major Nelson (Larry Hryb)’s podcast is a must-listen for any 360 owner. Chocked full of 360 information, excellent interviews with people involved with making 360 games and a general love for gaming. Major Nelson is clearly a gamer and evidently has the best job on the planet — he gets to play games and talk about them all the time. He’s also a very ardent supporter of Xbox Live (he’s on the team, after all) and Xbox Live Arcade and his podcasts are full of XBLA information.
4 – VirginWorlds (iTunes Link) – I don’t have time to follow all the MMOG news that comes out each day, but Brent at VirginWorlds does, and his podcast is an excellent recap of the week of MMO happenings. He also has great features, like the “Newb Experiment” where he recruited his wife to try out a bunch of MMOGs as a newbie experiencing games for the first time. It’s fun to listen to, hearing someone experience the worlds we love for the first time can be surreal. Brent’s pacing can be a bit slow for me at times, but overall his podcast shines in everyway.
3 – 1UP Yours (iTunes Link) – 1UP Yours is another podcast that I’ve been listening to for a long time, and it’s been fun to watch (listen?) it grow and evolve into an excellent show to listen to. While the language can get out of hand and sometimes borders on the unacceptable, most of the banter between the hosts is great. 1UP Yours is made up of passionate fan boys who love their gaming and love to defend their allegiances, but it never gets in the way of the discussion.
Being part of the 1UP network also gives them access to a lot of industry people and exclusives that other podcasts wouldn’t have access to, so they always have relevant content. They also do a good job of including their listeners through their forums. Building a community is always a good thing.
2 – Dual Screen Radio (iTunes Link) – Dual Screen Radio is one of my favorite podcasts, period. At first I thought they were taking things a little too serious but as time went on, I realized it was just their personalities coming out. Dual Screen Radio is extremely well produced. It does break one of my personal rules, though. I’d prefer podcasts that clock in around an hour or so but DSR usually clocks in at over two hours (their latest was almost 4 hours, but it was after a long hiatus) but it’s not a big deal. It’s always worth to listen to the whole thing.
For a podcast that is as topically focused as DSR is, they have enough content to keep it exciting. Their reviews are usually spot on and the games they give their “Stylus Up” (Thumbs up, stylus up, get it?) are always excellent titles. They also do a good job of bringing extra content to increase the utility of your DS. From add-ons to accesorries like the “Super Card,” DS Radio brings the goodness. They haven’t posted a show lately, but my fingers are crossed it will come out soon.
1 – CAGCast (iTunes Link) – The CAGCast is the first podcast I listened back when I first started doing the podcast-thing, and they’ve remained my favorite. I’m a big fan of CheapyD’s site (www.cheapassgamer.com) because his video game deals have kept my shelf stocked with cheap games. The quality of this podcast has consistently increased as they’ve gone on. I started listening around CAGCast #10 but I’ve listened to them all. They cover the whole gamut of gaming, from video game deals, to news, to reporting from shows (like E3 or the Tokyo Game Show). They also do “Your man in Japan,” which is a cool segment where Cheapy talks about his life in Japan. Hearing about a tall, bald New Yorker in Japan is always a good time.
The CAGCast is a “regular-guy” show. Cheapy and Wombat (his co-host) are always entertaining to listen to. It feels personal, like you could strike up a conversation with either of these guys and have a lot in common and a lot to talk about. They’re both opinionated, strong willed and don’t agree on everything. And that’s what makes their banter great.
They also have a lot of community interaction, which is great and they’ve even had their wives on the show. Listening to them answer their listener mail makes me chuckle. They’ve built up an excellent site and are providing solid content on top of it. All in all, one of my favorite podcasts.
So that’s my playlist. It keeps me entertained at work, during my commute and during sessions of Everquest 2. I listen to podcasts just as much as I read blogs now-a-days. I can’t get enough of it.