This is the Afterparty, where we sit down after every episode to break down our game and answer your questions about how to play at home. We talk about alchemy, initiative and what thieves can and can’t do. And we answer our first listener questions!
The party continues on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Tumblr @JointhePartyPod! On our Patreon page (patreon.com/jointhepartypod), you can unlock exclusive bonus content like cut scenes, bloopers, character backstories, player blog posts, Dungeons & Dragons game tips, and so much more. Transcripts are available for every episode at jointhepartypod.com. Have stories or questions for the next Afterparty? Email email@example.com or visit http://jointhepartypod.com/contact.
Join the Party is produced by Eric Silver, Brandon Grugle, Amanda McLoughlin, and Michael Fische. Special thanks to our creative consultants Connor McLoughlin, Julia Schifini and Heddy Hunt and @_KaileighRose_ and @irrel for your questions.
[00:00:25] Amanda: Welcome the Afterparty where we talk about what just happened, what could have happened, what might happen next time, and why the things that happen actually happen: the mechanics behind the game that we are all playing. Boys, how do you feel?
[00:00:35] Brandon: Tracey feels great.
[00:00:37] Amanda: We don't have to be in character this time.
Michael: I can’t believe that--
Brandon: [00:00:38] Oh thank God.
Michael: [00:00:40] I can't believe that Tracey feels that great, actually.
[00:00:42] B: No, Trace… Brandon.. Brandon’s tired.
A: Tracey is so pissed that he's not going to participate in our grand Chopped Bake-Off here. But let's go roughly chronologically so before we get to our great, our potion Cook-Off, we started mid-fall and we all lived, which was great!
[00:00:59] E: Yeah you did.
A: Yeah we did!
E: Good job not dying everybody.
B: Hey thanks.
[00:01:02] M: There's an alternate version of how the episode went down where it starts with the (rewind noise) freeze frame--
A: F-f-f-freeze frame!
M: --and Johnny B going, “You may be wondering how I got here.”
[00:01:16] M: But it was promptly shut down.
A: I love it. But we all, we all survive pretty well, and we ended up united in the Rookery. I was really proud of my nat 20 there on the animal handling because I just got to mind meld with some… what are they called? Bumblebirds?
[00:01:30] E: Bumbleates.
B: (Laughing) Bumblebirds.
A: They’re just not… I was going to say Bumble something else profane but I want to keep things a little bit, a little bit appropriate.
E: She was gonna say bumblefucks.
A: (Whispers) That’s for the hotel lobby, Eric, not the afterparty.
E: That’s the fancast about the Afterparty.
M: (Sighs) Jeez. Hosted by me.
[00:01:51] M: One of the things I really like that happened early on in the episode was a moment in Inara had in Stoneface’s room by inscribing Thieves Cant there. Just a movie that really surprised me in the moment because I've only ever heard of rogues attempting to read Thieves Cant and never write it.
A: Thanks, man.
M: It's very rare that a thief actually cares about the other thieves enough to write that sort of thing. That's, that's a big deal. It's also like, I mean, I think shows how earnest Inara is at becoming a thief, a rogue, an assassin, and trying to become a member of this illustrious crew of vagabonds and vagrants. And I was fawning a bit about it as, as like a vet to a newbie. It was pretty cool.
[00:02:38] A: Thank you, I mean, your approval means a lot, and--
A: No! And, really, and I appreciate it because…. I think, yeah, one, it’s just a super cool thing. Like, the mechanic of Thieves Cant I just love. I remember reading Boxcar Children novels when I was a kid and really loving the idea of, like, hobo symbols, you know, that you would carve on like stumps or whatever in and out of town. So that's just always been a thing that I find really fascinating. And I think you're totally right that it really is a character choice for Inara where she's giving up a family and, you know, walking away from a tradition and a village and a clan that like loves her and that she knows really well, in search of something that she can really call her own. And so being a part of this like tradition of Rogues and Thieves with a language of their own, being able to like contribute to this body of knowledge that she is hoping to learn a lot from, and getting, and getting a lot from, just being part of that identity and having her thieves tools and knowing how to pick locks... I appreciate that you kind of caught that character choice.
[00:03:40] A: But also, I decided to do that as, I don't know, maybe coming from a writer background. I wanted to leave little footholds into the plot, footholds into callbacks, for our DM to do with what he will. And I thought it was just a good moment to like do something that could be just frivolous or could be just a character choice, but also perhaps could really mean something to the plot later on.
M: I mean something, you may not know this, but Thieves Cant can also be very dangerous. You're leading people straight to you. And it could lead to you danger as well.
[00:04:08] B: One of my favorite things this episode as well was the fact that... there are snacks in the alchemy room?! Why are there so many snacks in the alchemy room?
M: And why did--
A: It’s his man cave! He has a mini fridge! He has, like, a mini fridge in his little den.
B: But actually though, like, the alchemy thing was super interesting. I think you [Eric] said last time and the Afterparty that you didn't like the way that D&D handles alchemy, or they don't handle it at all. So like what was the decision? What did you make up and what did you have to build and etc. etc. etc., Eric?
[00:04:39] E: So I actually had to build a lot of this from scratch. What is in, even in 5e which is so storytelling heavy, alchemy is not something that people understand how to do or it takes a lot of time. But like even if you are just messin’ around you'd be able to mix a bunch of things together and swirl it around, and it might be something.
[00:05:00] A: Is it a discipline like stealing or magic is a discipline?
[00:05:04] E: It is, but like there's no potion person, there's no alchemy class.
A: There's no maester
E: Right, there's no maistre where there should be.
E: Which I always found to be silly. Like even in Unearthed Arcana like you have someone who is an engineer and can use a gun, but there's no potion master, which is so like a thing that should go around with a rogue. But you have herbalism kits and like potion kits, but you're not that good at it.
A: Yeah, it's like tactical alchemy.
M: It’s interesting…
A: It’s like field magic.
[00:05:33] M: You have to spend a lot of time studying. Some characters come pre-built with, Johnny has an herbalism kid and herbalism knowledge; you can have an alchemy kit and alchemy knowledge, but it also requires, you know, when you start a new character you just have kind of base level knowledge unless you invest points into that. You can spend literally in-game time learning. It's takes years, which can happen in games.
[00:06:03] E: I had to make--so to answer Brandon’s other question, I spent a lot of time poking around online trying to figure out how to build a lot of this stuff out. So I cobbled together like a lot of different components of alchemy together, and I'm going to share with all of our Patrons, but I'll have a literal table of 20 like ingredients and then I have 10 modifiers and I wanted to see if you guys might pull two modifiers, what you wanted to do. I mean the ingredients were right there and it's like, Do you want to beat another person? Do you want to actually figure out what you're doing? Both of you try to figure out what you are making which was really fun, but I just like what I was trying to give you as much to play with and the chance in there.
[00:06:44] A: So you had a table where no matter what the dice rolls that we got [are], there will be an answer for it. So like 20 options and then 10 options because we rolled a d20 and a d10. And so you had you had things written down for whatever the dice roll may be.
[00:06:57] E: Yeah that's a really easy thing for DMs to do if you feel like putting in the work. It's like you don't necessarily want to force something on players, but you can use chance to like pick what you want. So I have 20 here and, I mean, there are a bunch that y’all didn’t pick, which are pretty fun things, and the modifiers all kind of messed with the potion a little bit.
[00:07:15] A: So that's like a year delay or other things.
[00:07:17] E: Like, so, Emeric wax is actually a delay by 12 hours.
E: So it kicks in 12 hours later, which is like kind of cool! I mean that might happen, and it might be a little weird.
A: If you're poisoning someone else that's pretty convenient, ‘cause they go home and don't know what happened to them.
E: Exactly, but like if you mix it with the wrong thing, like you're mixing it with your lycanthropy, you're going to be like, oh--
A: I'm not! I’m not!
[00:07:37] E: No, that isn't what happened. But if that had happen, they would drink it--
A: Twelve hours later…
E: It’s like, “Oh, I’m a wolf!”
A: Wolf time.
E: Oh no, my bad.
[00:07:45] A: So where did the Chopped aspect come from? You know that I watch Chopped almost every day after work when I go home. So what, what is the idea behind the Chopped here?
[00:07:54] E: I mean, everyone loves these cooking shows, these cooking battle shows. I also just got like full-on cable at my apartment.
E: So I've been watching so much food network lately.
A: It was Say Yes to the Dress or Chopped, one or the other.
[00:08:07] E: Exactly. Like no one's going to come out and be like, “Do these robes match?” and be like, “I don't think so…”
E: “This is way out of my price range but I love it, these robes are my favorite!”
[00:08:15] A: But I'm sure all of us with our siblings have like invented dumb shows, right? Or like ripped off game shows to do, to do some kind of like contests with our siblings.
E: Oh yeah.
A: So I got those inspired choice. I loved it.
[00:08:27] E: I mean, I'm a twin, so I know exactly how that stuff goes down. And the fact that like make it rope you guys in and y'all were just down to complete it, to compete!
A: I committed.
[00:08:36] B: We never, we never said yes or no to the challenge. We just, we just did it.
[00:08:42] M: I'm not sure that it was like a full Johnny move, but the concept was just so cool I was, I wasn't going to say no.
A: I love it. And like, I have twin siblings. I have a brother who is like 13 months younger than me, so we're like Irish twins, etc etc... But like, we have made up these game shows for ourselves as well and I just totally loved it. But, what is the race of Dragonborn? What--I just haven't heard them before. All I know is, like, Sycorax from Doctor Who.
A: And that's my only kind of like like template for Dragonborn.
[00:09:10] B: You just made me very happy.
A: You got it, Brando.
A: We just touch hands slowly across the table.
[00:09:15] Eric: I mean there are common races which are like human, elf, dwarf, even halfling and gnome are kind of like more common in regular cities. But beastly races, such as a Dragonborn, might be a little bit different, so they kind of only pop up every once in awhile. So a Dragonborn is really what it sounds like on its face. Like, Skyrim has its own Dragonborn. There are like lizard people that are all over the place, like dragons, as in Dungeons & Dragons, who would have thought, are a big deal.
E: It's like a half-human half-dragon hybrid with like a humanoid shape but dragon everything else.
[00:09:50] A: And so when you read the Dungeons & Dragons like Player Handbook, they talk about how rare various races are. So when you're creating as a DM your own universe are there given constants like, like how relatively common various races or terrains or what, or languages are, or can you really like make your own universe where like everyone is Dragonborn and, you know, elves are like the minority?
[00:10:15] E: Oh yeah you can absolutely do that. A lot of people just stick to fantasy convention, which D&D does really good job of kind of like laying down what they want and what they believe.
[00:10:24] A: Meaning like a general kind of like, “Oh, there are elves, there are dwarves, and like dragons are rare,” and just kind of stuff you glean from like most fantasy books?
A: I have two more things I want to ask about. One: at some point we talked about rolling perception, so when we got that second ingredient I got the root and y'all got the wax. I didn't even think to roll perception on what that root was, I was so excited by lycanthropy. So my more general question is like, what is the the level of general observation like a regular person walking into a room or meeting a new person and noticing stuff, like, details you give us, versus rolling perception. What is that line and how does it differ?
[00:11:02] B: There's also the concepts of like passive wisdom which I've never truly understood.
[00:11:07] E: All right. That's like, yeah, there are like three things happening at the same time. Okay.
A: (Laughs) Okay.
E: I am never going to make you go into a room... it's not like someone blindfolded you as you walk into a room and then, like, you take it off and are like, “All right, roll perception! Now you're in a room!” You can look around...
[00:11:20] A: Right, where it's like starting from a baseline of nothing. Like, there is a baseline of something.
[00:11:24] E: Yeah. So you know, you can always look around and figure out where you are. It's like, “I'm in a dungeon. It is, it's kind of gross down here and there's only one exit and there's like some stuff on the ground. It's muddy.”
A: It's like a first glance type thing.
E: But perception would be like finding general details out and then you can go focus in a little bit more if you want to investigate something, and then you run an investigation check. Passive perception would be like if someone is sneaking up on you or something is happening like near you. So if someone is trying to shoot an arrow at you do you have the passive perception to get out of the way. Or if somebody is sneaking up on you, what do they have to roll for a stealth check to beat your perception?
M: And then Tracey specifically has an ability that actually rolls into--
B: Danger sense!
M: Yeah, talk about that for a moment because I don't think we've talked about it before.
[00:12:14] B: We haven't, ‘cause I haven't used it before!
B: So as a second-level barbarian I get a skill called Danger Sense, where I have an uncanny sense of when things nearby aren't as they should be. And I, it allows me to have an edge when dodging away from danger. I have an advantage on dex saving roles against effects that I can see such as traps and spells.
[00:12:37] A: So it's not like you're looking out for something that's happening, you just have that like, you know, awareness around you and if someone's trying to sneak up on you, you understand.
[00:12:46] B: Yes.
M: It's a spidey sense. That's that's what it is. It's not actually very helpful.
M: You just know that something's about to happen. Is it that that plate is going to fall and you have to save it because you’re in the cafeteria? Or is there a nuclear bomb about to explode? You don't know because that's a super helpful power.
A: For sure.
E: Your friendly neighborhood robot man.
B: That is what I aspire to be.
A: (Singing to the tune of “Spiderman”) Robot man, robot man, he can do whatever a robot can!
E: (Singing along) Can he run through a wall? Probably since he has rage.
B: (Singing a beat late) ‘Cause he's a rage.
E: Look out! Here comes Tracey who’s a robot.
B: That's our song for this episode.
[00:13:23] A: And finally we are closing again on a tableau, but this time we're rolling initiative. So, ya'll, what does that mean?
[00:13:30] E: Initiative is the order in which people fight. It's kind of like the structure that D&D imposes on battles. This is actually your first formal battle that you're going to do against the gun and the shadows.
[00:13:43] A: So previous to now we just kind of been acting. Like you'll say, “Oh, and what are you doing?” You know, “Johnny, what are you doing?” Or I will kind of like leap up to do something if an idea comes to me. But in a battle situation it's a little more formulaic, right? Like you have to kind of figure out whose turn is when.
[00:13:59] B: Yes, so strictly speaking like on the first episode, we made the conscious decision to not roll initiative because we wanted, we favored the storyline over the kind of slowed-down aspect of fights sometimes in D&D for that specific--
A: When, with Nessie?
B: Yes, well, against the grungs, the little frog things.
[00:14:19] E: Oh yeah, yeah.
A: That's right, in episode two.
E: Yeah, in the kitchen. But I think that makes sense. I mean you'll see the difference here in episode two. They had a goal, which was to throw grungs at Greg and Alanzo, while your goal was to stop them. And that's not necessarily a battle or a fight, that's like more like a contest or like two things happening at the same time. While this is literally going to be like these things want to hurt you or hurt all of you. And I think you guys need to like defend yourselves and really tussle.
[00:14:52] B: Yeah every time I imagine an initiative taking place I imagine the cut scene in Pokemon when it’s like, “You, a wild Weevil appears!”
E: Exactly. It’s like, (sings Pokemon battle theme song)
[00:15:02] M: Yeah. I mean we had so many options of how to deal with the wedding, that scene in the wedding. And with this it's just going to be one real option: it's going to be incapacitating these guys and stopping their nefarious deeds.
B: Not necessarily...
M: (Sighs) Okay. And Tracey’s going to try to befriend a gun.
[00:15:16] E: (In Tracey voice) I am also a mechanical thing, hello!
E: (In Tracey voice) “I’m Tracey, I’m great!” (Makes gun sound effect)
[00:15:25] A: Most of the time that's how a battle ends, is like, one of you is not walking away, either because you're incapacitated or because you're dead. There is rarely other, there’s rarely recourse, apart from just fighting each other.
M: I mean not not to spoil anything, but charming people also works…
A: Oh no, is that a spell you have?
[00:15:42] M: That is a spell I have, but I'm not sure it will work depending on how humanoid these things are. That will be a question.
[00:15:46] B: It's a gun and two shadows, so I'm thinking not that humanoid.
E: (Laughs knowingly) Listen, there are a bunch of ways to resolve initiative. It's just like, that's kind of like D&D shorthand for that Pokemon cut screen. It's like a battle going down, but it can end, just like in Pokemon: either everyone is knocked out, or you can run, or something else happens. It's not a, it's really... Good and interesting and complex D&D games can resolve fights in various different ways.
[00:16:18] B: So just real quickly let's just say initiative is when everyone rolls and you go in order of the highest roll, including the monsters. So monsters roll 20 and roll a 5, monsters go before me and I go second. And we take turns and we take an action.
E: Time kind of changes a little bit to accommodate everyone acting at the same time. It is a little bit of a “bullet time,” but every single person's turn, like their action and their movement, is six seconds in total. It’s not really happening simultaneously, but it's like, some people are faster than others so they get their punch or they get their stab or they get their movement faster than other people. So each person like, has six seconds to themselves to like hurt some stuff.
[00:16:56] A: And that was kind of my perception of D&D as an outsider is that, oh, you roll for every little thing. So you roll to like walk down the path, or you roll to like, you know, to see if you catch that fish in the stream for dinner. Like that was kind of my idea, is that every single thing is determined by the dice or is math. But rolling initiative to me is the purest idea of what D&D actually is which is, like, I have an intention Amanda, as a player, but what Inara can actually accomplish is determined by whatever my dice say.
[00:17:24] B: Yeah, I think the idea behind initiative is that it kind of balances everything out. So like, if you have a super powerful wizard he doesn't just on the first turn blast his level 6 spell and destroy, and the battle is over.
B: Like kind of thing. So I think it's, it gives everyone an even playing field.
A: And you have to be creative too, because if your role really stinks and you have to find out, you know, something else to do. Or me, who's not a fighter whatsoever, so if Inara like gets some incredible hit and is able to use her like crappy short sword to, you know, decapitate some big monster, like that to me is the fun and the interest of the game.
[00:17:56] B: Yeah exactly.
A: We are very excited to start answering your questions during the Afterparty. There are now people actually listening to the shows that we are putting out there and it is very exciting.
A: So our very first listener question comes from at @_KaileighRose_, I will credit you in the description. Girl, we love you.
E: Hey, you are one of our first listeners! Thank you so much for joining.
A: And our first Patreons, so thank you so much Kaileigh.
B: She is… hey. Did you guys know she is the coolest?
A: She is the coolest.
E: Word on the street, I talked to these kids who are just hanging out on the street--
A: In Fidapolis?
E: Yeah. Yeah yeah.
[00:18:28] B: She's like that person that comes in the party like 40 minutes late but like everyone stops what they're doing.
A: They’re like, damn! Party’s started.
B: Like oh, she’s here!
M: (In Johnny B. Goodlight voice) It has been an age since I’ve seen her, but she is the best.
A: Kaileigh, it has been an age! It has been AN AGE.
[00:18:33] E: I think she brought ice?
M: Ooh, callback.
A: She did, which is like the most under appreciated and beautiful part of the party. So Kaileigh asks, “Do any of you do anything special to get in character?” And then in parentheses (theatre nerd question). Well, Kaileigh, good news. Most of us are theater nerds, so we are here for you.
A: All right, so first of all, whenever any of us had to do character voices then we haven't done them yet for the night we do say one line in particular to get in character. Brandon, what is your line?
B: My line is 100 percent, (in Tracey voice), “Tracey feels great!”
A: And then you get character flawlessly.
B: And then I get it, yeah.
A: Michael, what is your line?
[00:19:11] M: I mumble off to the side towards where Brandon sitting and go, (in Johnny B. Goodlight voice) “Oh, I'm Johnny B. Goodlight.”
A: You do.
B: (In car salesman voice) “I'm here to sell you a car!”
M: And the best part is before each episode I just like say that like a thousand times and still can't do it every. single. time. And it's all about that, like, (in car salesman voice) “I'm ready to sell you the best damn pre-owned vehicle that you've ever heard of. Seen. Or whatever.”
[00:19:32] B: Hey, Inara. Hey. Hey, Amanda. Hey, what's Inara’s?
[00:19:36] A: (In whining version of Inara’s voice) “What do you want?”
A: I just like, I ask a petulant question and that puts me into Inara voice. Uh, which is great. But I mean I think going forward I can just pretend to talk to Stoneface and that will get me super into character.
A: So, uh, Eric. How? What? Where do these accents come from? How do you do…
M: Oh, it’s so specific.
A: It’s so specific and so good!
E: So, I…
A: Like, where did Danny Zuko come from?
[00:19:57] E: So my character voices I try to pull from just like whatever impressions I already know. Some of them are actually just my voice. Greg and Alonzo are pretty much my voice. Greg is a little pitched up, Alonzo's pretty much straightforward because I know that he has a lot to say. Really important older people, such as Sylvanus, they usually speak a little bit lower and a little bit more solemn, just like, (lower, slower voice) “Hello.” Gravelly voice like James is kind of like a back of the throat, is like, (gravelly voice) “Hey, don't mess with me, I'm going to beat you up! Also here’s a flower.”
[00:20:32] E: Tammy and Taylor obviously just like kind of really high, like, pitched up. And Stoneface is Danny Zuko. It's my terrible Grease impression.
A: A crowd favorite!
E: And I just do everything that I think Danny Zuko would do. I had a, my friend Joe, would always say this thing from Grease. Sandy, Sandy says to Danny in like the hallway, “You’re just jealous!” Then he says (Danny Zuko voice), “Jealous, Sandy? Don't make me laugh. A-ha, a-ha, a-ha.”
[00:21:01] E: So I just think about that. So. Or I'm doing like the, a combination between Danny Zuko and the Fonz. So, Stoneface, I go, “Ey! I’m Stoneface! Ey!” And then I just go from there.
M: (Exasparated) EVERY TIME Stoneface talks he does that.
A: He does, he does.
M: EVERY SINGLE TIME, which is so good.
A: In my notes from the episode I have “Eyy Stoneface eyy” written down. I don't know why, I just wrote it down because it was happening so much during the episode.
[00:21:24] E: There are just characters that I feel like they are fully formed in my head. It's a little bit harder that I've written them and then I need to put voices to them and I don't want to repeat the same--like having Alonzo and Greg have the same voice is a little frustrating to me. But like I can't, their voices don't stand out in my head so I can't differentiate it.
A: And there are characters that come back, you know, into the campaign and actually need to have a role in the plot. So at a certain point having a distracting voice would be distracting to the stories that make sense that the characters that come back again and again would be a little bit closer to natural for you.
[00:21:56] M: (In Johnny B. Goodlight voice) Yeah it would be weird if an annoying voice is constantly around.
[00:22:01]A: Michael, that's just in your soul, is the authoritative dad that is Johnny B. Goodlight. Related question is from Irrel, @irrel, the dopiest designer of Dungeons and Dragons merch that is out there.
E: Oh my god!
B: So good!
A: We own your pins, we own your T-shirt.
A: We just lowkey buy everything you create. So thank you for that.
B: And keep making it because we'll keep buying it!
A: Please keep making it! But [she] asks how we came up with our characters. So real quick I'd love to hear from all of you, I guess Brandon and Fish, and we’ll just hear from Eric on an ongoing basis where these wonderful NPCs come from.
E: And Amanda as well, you're going to talk about your character.
A: Oh, don’t worry, I will. But boys, where did your characters come from?
[00:22:41] B: When we were like piloting this podcast, wasn't I like a changeling?
[00:22:48] E: Oh my gosh.
M: You were, my god, yes.
E: That fucking changeling.
E: It was so difficult to keep track of these two in our pilot which you will never ever ever ever--
B: Oh no.
E: --ever ever ever see.
B: It wasn’t even a pilot, it was trash.
A: A train wreck.
E: Just a trash fire.
A: A flaming trash can.
E: I had a changeling from Brandon and I had a Moon Druid from Fish.
M: But could change form?
E: Yeah. So like you would always polymorph, so like both of you were just like switching between characters and no one could keep track of you and you're just like, “Now I'm an ant and no one knows who I am!”
M: We were confused...
M: ...about it several times too, which was just nuts.
[00:23:20] E: It’s like, “Now I’m a rat and it’s Ratatouille!” Literally a plot point! Literally a plot point of the pilot!
A: We’ve moved on. We’ve moved on.
E: I think what happened was that Amanda and Fish picked their classes first. I wanted Fish to be magical because he has the most experience. I thought he was going to go straight wizard and we can talk about that later, but I know Amanda wanted to be a little flip teen and Fish was going to be magic so you [Brandon] had to be punchy. And I think we were talking about how like fighter was a little hard to deal with...
[00:23:48] B: I didn't want to be so like boxed in, and, or like, not that fighters are boring, but like fighters are pretty straight ahead.
A: But it is, and that's why I wanted to be one, because I wanted to be different to my actual personality. And so, doing something that had a clear list of things that she could do, things she couldn't, and ways she would react to a situation, is why I chose to be a rogue. And so I think you just went a different direction.
[00:24:13] E: You were almost a paladin there for a hot second, but then it was just like too hard to learn on the fly.
M: But how did, how did the warforged part happen?
[00:24:20] B: Uh, I do think I did go class first. I was looking at Paladin and I got to like, I think we almost started at level three at one point, and level three Paladin is just... it’s literally too much checks for me to like comprehend in my brain what's going on.
A: So much going on.
B: So I think I just need to simplify, and barbarian for all of its minuses has a lot of pluses in simplicity. And I think Warforged actually compliments that very well and I... it was in Unearthed Arcana.
E: That was when UA came out and we were just like, okay, you were going to be a barbarian. But you weren't that happy with it, and then we were just like, oh, well what if you were a robot.
[00:24:59] M: Also, and I think I may have talked about this before, but the fact that our classes aren't really determining exactly what we can do, we're being really open about it. And I think being a warforged really complements that because even in previous editions, like, it's so versatile, and it means more than just the class it is. As for Johnny, I think my first ever World of Warcraft character was a warlock and I've, I think, maybe only ever once played as a warlock in D&D and it wasn't for that long, and I really liked it. We played with a Warlock whose patron was the... Raven Queen?
M: Which was in Unearthed Arcana that was really cool. It was really dark and it was like complicated, and I am someone who's nowadays like more into, like, more positive things anyway? And the whole idea of the Undying Light being just a positive plain and positivity, and since Warlocks are all about charisma and it's all about like, you know, (in Stoneface voice) “Eyy!”, it felt like it would work perfectly with the Warlock and also be a nice twist to a Warlock. Which, most are like brooding and unhappy and sad, and just being a, you know, not completely happy-go-lucky but somewhat more positive, you know, feels good as a character. And it’s like more how I'm feeling these days.
[00:26:16] B: So, Amanda.
B: How did you get to Inara?
A: Uh, I just thought that a Rogue would be the most opposite to what I actually am, which is a creature of law and order.
A: And routine and predictability and loving the rules. So I just basically wanted to push myself to be as different to my real life choices as I could get. And I think the experience of leaving home really abruptly and reinventing oneself is one that I didn't really have? I sort of like slid out of home slowly, and just sort of grew into the person that I already knew I wanted to be in real life. So having a character who is really just having the first opportunity to live out the life that she wants to live, and to learn new skills and to be rebellious and really commit to that and honor that urge. Something I didn't get to do as a person. And it's really fun to make those choices as a character.
[00:27:15] M: Are you saying role playing lets you imagine a different life than you have.
[00:27:20] A: You know, it sure does. And I even though I did theater in high school I never acted, and I never got it, but now I sort of get that impulse. Because it is really fun and therapeutic and cathartic, almost, to just inhabit the head of someone different.
[00:27:37] M: Gosh, roleplaying sounds like a thing everyone should do and is not just something for like nerds.
[00:27:41] A: No, it's not! And listen, like, I'm a queer lady, I play a gay character, you can be whatever you want to be in your games. And you can find DMs that are great and you can find players who are super accepting and affirming, and like, you can live lives that you want to live in fantasy.
[00:27:57] B: That's actually really interesting about the theater thing because I was not in theater. I've never been in theater. I think I was in there for one year in sixth grade, but the act of role playing that I've come to do in these episodes, like maybe like three, four and onwards, has been like you said weirdly like satisfying and cathartic at the same time? Like, it does cause me stress which is like weird that, you know...
A: Yeah, like why would my character's distress cause me actual distress in real life?
B: Yeah, a group of fictional characters...
A: I know!
B: ...in an imaginary world is causing me actual physical stress? I don't know, it's really, it's a really interesting concept for me.
[00:28:36] M: I was telling someone today that really the days that we play D&D are the days I sleep the best because I feel so exhausted and so mentally and emotionally like I did everything today. And it’s just...
A: Yeah! It's just listening to our Episode 0s, our Meet the Character episodes, like listening to just my own excitement in my voice talking about Inara leaving home for the first time... Like, I am I'm almost nostalgically transported back to leaving home at 18 in a way that I didn't do! Like, I moved 30 minutes away from home and went to school in the city that I lived in. And, you know? And like, I don't know, it just it just unlocks emotional nostalgic imaginatory parts of me that I haven't activated before.
E: Now if you think it's tiring controlling one player...
A: Oh no!
E: Let me tell you, having a conversation with three of yourself is very complicated.
A: You're married to yourself, and trying to assassinate yourself. And folks, even though this is the Afterparty, the party continues in the hotel lobby....
A: ...which is social media. So if you follow us @JointhePartyPod on Twitter, on Facebook, on Instagram. We’re at jointhepartypod.com, and if you want to be, our, I don't know, favorite person. If you want to throw us a couple bucks...
B: If you want to be one of Johnny’s best friends.
A: If you want to be a Johny B. Goodfriend.
M: An infinite friend.
E: If you want to earn our love by giving us money...
A: Our love can be bought!
A: And you can do that at patreon.com/jointhepartypod. You can get maps, you can get character sketches, you can get bloopers, you can get early access to our episodes! It’s really a lot of great stuff. A livestream with us! So just check us out at patreon.com/jointhepartypod
E: Yeah, if you want my really really cool Google Docs table of all the possible ingredients that could have gone down on Chopped, I’ll share it with you! Just throw me a couple bucks.
A: Yeah, for sure. So join us over on Patreon. And thank you so much for listening! As always if you have questions, if you have suggestions, if you have stories about ways that your campaigns have gone, please let us know. We really want to hear about it. We’re jointhepartypod at gmail. But until then, we’ll see you in two weeks.
E: See ya later!
B: Bye guys!
M: (Cat noise)