Abraham Lincoln

Episode 309: Snort the Pringles

September 7th, 2018 | Robin

On the alert for treacherous banana peels, we gather in the Gaming Hut to wonder if GUMSHOE can handle incompetent PCs.

In Ask Ken and Robin, Patreon backer Frank Rafaelson wants Ken to pitch a new edition of Nephilim.

How to Write Good posits that idiot plotting is not just an issue in procedure-heavy narratives. We look at ways to avoid it in dramatic scenes.

Finally, Patreon backer Adam Grotjohn wonders what fell reality Ken’s Time Machine was preventing at the cemetery now known as Lincoln Park in Chicago.

Want to pose a question to the show? Get your priority question asking access with your support for the KARTAS Patreon!

Snag Ken and Robin merchandise at TeePublic.

The White Box is a game design workshop in a box, bursting with inspiring theory and the basic components to turn that theory into playable reality. Brought to you in tandem by Atlas Games and Gameplaywright, it’s the perfect gift for the aspiring game master in your life—who might well be yourself.

Ken’s latest roleplaying game, The Fall of Delta Green, is now available for preorder from Pelgrane Press. Journey to the head-spinning chaos of the late 1960s, back when everyone’s favorite anti-Cthulhu special ops agency hadn’t gone rogue yet, for this pulse-pounding GUMSHOE game of war, covert action, and Mythos horror.

Grab the translated riches of FENIX magazine in a special bundle deal from our friends at Askfageln, over at Indie Press Revolution. Score metric oodles of Ken Hite gaming goodness, a cornucopia of articles, complete games, plus the cartoon antics of Bernard the Barbarian. Warning: in English, not in Swedish. In English, not Swedish.

Just in time to save the world, though perhaps not your team of hardened covert agents, from the Mythos, the Delta Green Handlers Guide from Arc Dream Publishing is now in print and either at or headed to a game store near you. The slipcase print edition includes both the Handlers’ Guide and Agents’ Handbook, fitting snugly into your go bag along with your extra passports and list of weapons caches.

4 Responses to “Episode 309: Snort the Pringles”

  1. Lee Williams says:

    During the Nephilim segment I found myself very much in agreement with Ken’s assessment of the way that conspiracy theories as a whole have gone all horrible, and become the territory of shouty mouthbreathers like Alex Jones. We need to make them fun again!

    • Phil Masters says:

      But they were never designed to be fun. It was just that, from an outsider’s point of view, they were funny. But who’s laughing now?

      (And even back in the day, Ken was always warning people that if you bought your nutcase books new and indiscriminately, you could all too easily end up giving your money to Nazis and other antisemites.)

      Anyhow… I remember that, back in the 90s, somebody theorised that the original French Nephilim was some kind of big sloppy Gallic parody/joke, not taking the subject especially setiously — but then it fell into the hands of Chaosium, who for all their brilliance as a games company, were perhaps the sort of people who were a bit too inclined to take that modern occultism bunkum seriously, and who therefore assumed that this was meant to be a serious game, and edited it accordingly.

      I also recall being told that the line was meant to have some big reveals as it went along, the biggie being that the Nephilim weren’t really possessing dybukks; that was just the human mind’s way of adapting to a suddenly attained state of spiritual enlightenment. The trouble was, of course, that a lot of details in the core book made that total gibberish, which migh5 explain why the idea was scrapped.

  2. Ian Young says:

    Late to the show here, but I see that a quarter-century on and Phil’s still banging the drum about a game that he never wanted to play. This time with a back-handed compliment timed to coincide with the publisher’s resurgence. This, however, is clearly not the place to entertain conspiracies about professional rivalries. Bang on, Phil.

    Ken’s pointed remarks about Nephilim and the absurdity of Mrs. Ruiz, the laundromat owner from Miami who becomes a mahatma and inheritor of the soul of Genghis Khan, stand in sharp contrast to the fact that, almost in the same breath, he mentions that Genghis started out as a lowly herder from the sticks before conquering a quarter of the globe. What the game failed to do was really explore Mrs. Ruiz’s potential to change the world again, for good or bad. Instead, she and her mates squirmed under the heel of a top-heavy array of human secret societies. That was a wrong left-turn for Nephilim to take, editorially.

    That said, I can’t agree more that the conspiracy-for-fun culture of the ’90s has born strange fruit, indeed. Time to move on to a new Aeon, from Pisces to Aquarius.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Film Cannister
Cartoon Rocket
Flying Clock
Film Cannister