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Posts Tagged ‘Tradecraft Hut’

Episode 229: Your Perspective on Trees and Badgers

February 17th, 2017 | Robin

The Gaming Hut stands at the service of Patreon backer Vince Arebalo’s son Dax, who asks for tips on getting comfortable around unfamiliar fellow players.

The CIA has finally put its trove of declassified historical documents in a readily accessible online database. In the Tradecraft Hut we find out what Ken searched for first.

Backer Jeremiah Genest commands the opening of the Narrative Hut to talk about political horror, and what distinguishes itself from its better known cousin, the political thriller.

Finally at the behest of backer Doc Cross we take a trip in Ken’s Time Machine to meet the most august Emperor Norton I of San Francisco.

Want to pose questions of your own? Support the KARTAS Patreon!

Snag Ken and Robin merchandise at TeePublic.


Sleepers awake, and travel through the secret pathways of the occulted world to preorder the new edition of Unknown Armies from Atlas Games. From the deluxe printed edition to ebooks in a variety of formats, the weird wonders of UA beckon!

Want to plunge headlong into Lovecraftian mystery, but lack a gaming group? Want to introduce a friend or loved one to the roleplaying hobby? GUMSHOE One-2-One has come to your rescue! Find this new system by some guy named Robin D. Laws, in the line’s flagship title, Cthulhu Confidential. Now pre-ordering at the Pelgrane Press store. Do intervals between episodes plunge you into Hite withdrawal? Never fear! his brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish. John Scott Tynes’ Puppetland is ready to knock the stuffing out of a game store near you in its gorgeous new full-color hardcover edition. Join the good folks at Arc Dream in battling the horrific forces of Punch the Maker-Killer!

Episode 226: Yig is More of a Moundsville Ohio Guy

January 27th, 2017 | Robin

A surrealist sandbox and a structured mystery make a date in the Gaming Hut, as Josh Rose asks how to run Dreamhounds of Paris as a GUMSHOE One-2-One setting.

Given that the world has turned into a spy novel, and not a particularly believable one at that, maybe it’s time to duck into the Tradecraft Hut for an update on espionage in the news.

Ask Ken and Robin features a demand for parity from Drew Clowery, who wants a “how Robin runs games” segment to go with its Ken equivalent from Episode 220.

Finally Eben Lindsey asks us to rev up Ken’s Time Machine to reveal the fate of Cahokia, the North American city that suffered mass abandonment circa 1400.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!

Snag Ken and Robin merchandise at TeePublic.

Get yourself some flat plastic Ken and Robin miniatures by supporting Arcknight’s Flat Plastic Miniatures 2 Kickstarter.


Sleepers awake, and travel through the secret pathways of the occulted world to preorder the new edition of Unknown Armies from Atlas Games. From the deluxe printed edition to ebooks in a variety of formats, the weird wonders of UA beckon!

Want to plunge headlong into Lovecraftian mystery, but lack a gaming group? Want to introduce a friend or loved one to the roleplaying hobby? GUMSHOE One-2-One has come to your rescue! Find this new system by some guy named Robin D. Laws, in the line’s flagship title, Cthulhu Confidential. Now pre-ordering at the Pelgrane Press store. Do intervals between episodes plunge you into Hite withdrawal? Never fear! his brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish. John Scott Tynes’ Puppetland is ready to knock the stuffing out of a game store near you in its gorgeous new full-color hardcover edition. Join the good folks at Arc Dream in battling the horrific forces of Punch the Maker-Killer!

Episode 212: I Was Scheduled For One Anyway

October 14th, 2016 | Robin

We kick off another episode inspired entirely by Patreon backer requests with John Corey, who asks Ken to expand on real history as the best setting for gaming and the challenges of reskinning it, thus inviting another round of That Thing I Always Say.

The enigmatic asker known only as Bryan ushers into the Horror Hut to consider Lovecraftian spam.

In the Tradecraft Hut, Simon Hedge requests a 101 on Kremlinology.

And Neil Dalton poses a probing question in the Eliptony Hut, about horror writer, UFO contactee and podcaster Whitley Strieber.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Get trapped in Lovecraft’s story “The Call of Cthulhu” in Atlas Games’ addictive new card game Lost in R’lyeh. Take a selfie with your purchased copy of the game at your brick and mortar game retailer and send it to Atlas to claim your special Ken and Robin promo card. Do intervals between Ken’s Time Machine segments leave you listless, bored, and itchy? Then you’re in luck, because TimeWatch, the wild and woolly GUMSHOE game of chrono-hopping adventure has now blasted its way into our reality. Brought to you by master of over-the-top fast-paced fun Kevin Kulp and our reality-maintaining overlords at Pelgrane Press. For those seeking yet more Ken content, his brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish. Attention, operatives of Delta Green, the ultra-covert agency charged with battling the contemporary forces of the Cthulhu Mythos! Now everything you need to know to play Delta Green: The Roleplaying Game, perhaps extending your valiantly short field life, can be found in the Delta Green Agent’s Handbook.   

Episode 207: It’s Pronounced “Executive”

September 9th, 2016 | Robin

Our 207th installment starts on a tripartite note as Patreon backer Andrew Young pops his head into the Gaming Hut to ask about the pertinence of three-act structure in roleplaying scenarios.

Speaking of Andrews, the Tradecraft Hut opens the case file on East German spymaster Markus Wolf, at the behest of backer Andrew Collins.

In Ken and/or Robin Talk To Someone Else, we invite Jeff Tidball to reveal all about Atlas Games’ upcoming GUMSHOE game set in Ars Magica’s Mythic Europe.

Having left a suitable interval for you all to finish your binge-watching, we then turn on the Television Hut for a much-requested chat about “Stranger Things.”

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Get trapped in Lovecraft’s story “The Call of Cthulhu” in Atlas Games’ addictive new card game Lost in R’lyeh. Take a selfie with your purchased copy of the game at your brick and mortar game retailer and send it to Atlas to claim your special Ken and Robin promo card.

Do intervals between Ken’s Time Machine segments leave you listless, bored, and itchy? Then you’re in luck, because TimeWatch, the wild and woolly GUMSHOE game of chrono-hopping adventure has now blasted its way into our reality. Brought to you by master of over-the-top fast-paced fun Kevin Kulp and our reality-maintaining overlords at Pelgrane Press.

For those seeking yet more Ken content, his brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish.

Attention, operatives of Delta Green, the ultra-covert agency charged with battling the contemporary forces of the Cthulhu Mythos! Now everything you need to know to play Delta Green: The Roleplaying Game, perhaps extending your valiantly short field life, can be found in the Delta Green Agent’s Handbook.

  

Episode 203: Pull the Damn Trigger You Coward!

August 12th, 2016 | Robin

In a special live from our hotel room episode, we inflate a portable Gaming Hut to field a question from Frent about catastrophe pile-ups in popular continuities.

The Tradecraft Hut looks at the implications of Russian intelligence’s hack of the Democratic National Committee emails. (See The Crusader, by Paul Kengor, pp. 317-320 for the full text of KGB head Viktor Chebrikov’s letter to Andropov about Ted Kennedy’s approaches to the Soviets about the 1984 election.)

Ken demanded it, so we did it—a Food Hut on that most exalted of fruits, the blueberry.

Thanks to Patreon backer Morgan Ellis, we have a Consulting Occultist topic Ken can field in his sleep and/or the day before a big show: ley lines.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Get trapped in Lovecraft’s story “The Call of Cthulhu” in Atlas Games’ addictive new card game Lost in R’lyeh. Take a selfie with your purchased copy of the game at your brick and mortar game retailer and send it to Atlas to claim your special Ken and Robin promo card.    Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted. You say that’s still not enough Ken for you? Very well, my friend. His brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish. Attention, operatives of Delta Green, the ultra-covert agency charged with battling the contemporary forces of the Cthulhu Mythos! Now everything you need to know to play Delta Green: The Roleplaying Game, perhaps extending your valiantly short field life, can be found in the Delta Green Agent’s Handbook.   

Episode 196: Conspicuously Non-Assassinated

June 24th, 2016 | Robin

In Ask Ken and Robin, Patreon backer Philip asks for ways to incorporate the beat cycle from Robin’s book Hamlet’s Hit Points into game systems that don’t already support it.

The Tradecraft Hut peers into the dossier of Yakov Blumkin, the so-called Soviet James Bond.

We gather in the Gaming Hut to wonder why breaking the fourth wall was ever considered poor form.

Then we lurk our way to the Conspiracy Corner, where Patreon backer Darren Hennessy wants to know what we know about the Business Plot.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Ken and Robin have oft been accused of being cards. Well, we can deny it no longer. We have become super-limited promo cards for Murder of Crows, Atlas Games’ fast-paced card game of murder and the macabre, for two to five players in the mood for something a little morbid. It’s Edward Gorey meets Caligari, by way of Edgar Allan Poe. Wait a minute, what does that graphic say? I’m not so sure about this… Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted.

This episode also brought to you by Joe Dever’s Freeway Warrior, Kickstarting from now until July 7th. Survive the apocalypse with the blazing return of Joe Dever’s classic game books, now from Askfageln.

Attention, operatives of Delta Green, the ultra-covert agency charged with battling the contemporary forces of the Cthulhu Mythos! Now everything you need to know to play Delta Green: The Roleplaying Game, perhaps extending your valiantly short field life, can be found in the Delta Green Agent’s Handbook.   

Episode 191: In Case I Trip Over a Sand Dune

May 20th, 2016 | Robin

Patreon supporter Tim Brandis kicks us off with an Ask Ken and Robin question about which of our core design beliefs might have evolved over time.

In the Tradecraft Hut we reach way back to that most classic of espionage scandals, the Dreyfus Affair.

The Cinema Hut finds us in Stetsons and spurs for an introductory course on the Western.

Finally, backer Chris McNeil requests that Ken’s Time Machine be put to use making the medieval peasant revolt of Ken’s choice successful.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


It’s yo ho ho and a pocketful of doubloons as Atlas Games surveys the seven seas from the crow’s nest that is our coveted anchor sponsor slot. Parrot on its shoulder, it orders up another special deal for Ken and Robin listeners, this time in the form of their innovative game of piratical nautical warfare, Pieces of Eight. Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted. You say that’s still not enough Ken for you? Very well, my friend. His brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish.

Attention, operatives of Delta Green, the ultra-covert agency charged with battling the contemporary forces of the Cthulhu Mythos! Now everything you need to know to play Delta Green: The Roleplaying Game, perhaps extending your valiantly short field life, can be found in the Delta Green Agent’s Handbook.

Episode 189: It Won’t Fix Me But It Will Fix That

May 6th, 2016 | Robin

Patreon backer Kevin J. Maroney gets us started with an Ask Ken and Robin question about other designers’ mechanics we consider to be under-stolen.

The Tradecraft Hut takes on a recent story claiming that infamous Nazi military officer Otto Skorzeny ended his career as a Mossad assassin.

In the Food Hut we heroically accede to a request from Patreon backer Ethan Cordray to sip some liqueurs. No, wait, talk about liqueurs.

Finally backer Joshua Hillerup climbs the creaky stairs that lead to the Consulting Occultist to learn about the occult symbolism of flowers.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


From the magical land of sponsors comes Atlas Games, who with a twinkle of fairy dust revive their 2nd Edition Once Upon a Time clearance sale.

Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted.

You say that’s still not enough Ken for you? Very well, my friend. His brilliant pieces on parasitic gaming, alternate Newtons, Dacian werewolves and more now lurk among the sparkling bounty of The Best of FENIX Volumes 1-3, from returning sponsors Askfageln. Yes, it’s Sweden’s favorite RPG magazine, now beautifully collected. Warning: not in Swedish.

When you assemble your bug-out kit, make sure it includes a copy of Delta Green: Need to Know, the everything-you-need quickstart kick for the classic game of covert agents against the Cthulhu mythos, from our fine friends at Arc Dream Publishing.

Episode 186: You Need Canapes To Have a Secret Society

April 15th, 2016 | Robin

Ask Ken and Robin gets especially educational as Patreon supporter Brent Brown asks us for tips for using RPGs to teach history, home school style.

Tradecraft Hut peers into the espionage scene in Brussels.

How To Write Good looks at influences and how to incorporate them well.

Finally the Consulting Occultist slakes the hankering of Patreon backer Stewart Robertson for info on the Black Dragon Society.

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Bend reality to your will, but be ready to pay the price, as Atlas Games’ Unknown Armies bubbles up from the supernatural underground for a weird and majestic new Kickstarter campaign.
Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted. If you’re like every roleplayer we know, you strive to outshine others in showing your love of dice. Well, now you can arouse the envy of friends and foes alike with Askfageln’s dazzling coffee table photo art book dedicated to all things pipped and many-sided, Dice: Rendezvous with Randomness. Luxuriate in the photo artistry of Mans Danneman. Grab the book or gorgeous prints through their Kickstarter!

When you assemble your bug-out kit, make sure it includes a copy of Delta Green: Need to Know, the everything-you-need quickstart kick for the classic game of covert agents against the Cthulhu mythos, from our fine friends at Arc Dream Publishing.

Episode 185: I Don’t Think I Prefer That At All

April 8th, 2016 | Robin

Among My Many Hats is an Egyptian headdress with a distinctly feline aspect, as Ken talks about his installment of Ken Writes About Stuff devoted to Bast.

The Gaming Hut looks at ways to write scenarios to present the information about Game Master Characters GMs need to run their games.

Thanks to Patreon Patron Jeff Kahrs, the Tradecraft Hut finally gets around to that segment on Kim Philby it’s had on the to-do list since forever.

And finally, Ask Ken and Robin fulfills the desire of Kolbe and other Patreon patrons in bringing back the stars of our existential mystery, Brian Harker and Eric, the talking lava lamp he has grudgingly sworn to protect. Well, maybe sworn is a strong choice of words…

Support the KARTAS Patreon!


Bend reality to your will, but be ready to pay the price, as Atlas Games’ Unknown Armies bubbles up from the supernatural underground for a weird and majestic new Kickstarter campaign.
Ken fans who did not partake of the Kickstarter can now sink their fangs into the general release of the Dracula Dossier from Pelgrane Press, consisting of the Director’s Handbook and Dracula Unredacted. If you’re like every roleplayer we know, you strive to outshine others in showing your love of dice. Well, now you can arouse the envy of friends and foes alike with Askfageln’s dazzling coffee table photo art book dedicated to all things pipped and many-sided, Dice: Rendezvous with Randomness. Luxuriate in the photo artistry of Mans Danneman. Grab the book or gorgeous prints through their Kickstarter! In a move that surely violates someone’s security clearance, this episode is also brought to you by our friends at Arc Dream Publishing. The Kickstarter for Delta Green: the Roleplaying Game has come to an end, but don’t let that stop you from indulging your fever for this classic game, or that pinnacle of the Cthulhu game zine world, The Unspeakable Oath.

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