Remember those comic strips that were so popular not so long ago? The ones like Order of the Stick, Nodwick and Dork Tower that take their humor from not only the experience of playing a role-playing game, but also the clichés of the games themselves? Imagine if one of those comic series was a podcast. That podcast would be the Trapcast and the hosts would be the wacky characters within that comic.
With this context in mind, Brant is the long-suffering leader of the group. He’s the man who does the technical work and is the poor guy who has tasked himself with herding this particular pack of cats. Of course, he’s also generally the one who is enabling the madness that surrounds him. Brant generally either feeds the insanity that surrounds him or he starts it and then sits back and lets it build to a head before stepping in to bring things back on track. He’s also the one who points out just how crazy some of the things everyone says are.
George, on the other hand, is the mad wizard that the party picks up somewhere along the way. Or perhaps he just follows along and no one has bothered to run him off. He’s seen some cyclopean horror that the human mind is meant to see and it has clearly shattered his sanity. Generally, his ramblings are both pointless and completely hilarious, but every now and then, like any lunatic’s ramblings, something brilliant comes through. He’s also got a bizarre and disturbing fascination with Sting’s song Desert Rose.
Jenn is the princess who has decided to tag along with the group whether they like it or not. She’s decided that she wants an adventure (and potentially, a cute pet) and she is evanescently dedicated to doing so. She is also almost unbearably cute and seems to be able to get away with murder by playing the “I’m cute, don’t be mean to me” card. But she’s also come a long way even from the beginning of the show. Jenn was almost a complete novice when the show started but in the short span that the show’s been on, she’s been to a ton of conventions and tried a ton of games. In fact, she’s been to more cons in the last year than I’ve been to in my whole life.
Finally, there is Sara. Sara is the bawdy tavern wench with a dirty mouth, a mean right hook and just maybe a heart of gold. She is brassy and clearly doesn’t have any problem speaking her mind. She is not mean spirited, however. Though she can, occasionally be a bit abrasive, it doesn’t feel as though she’s just being abrasive to be mean. That’s simply her personality and her way of expressing herself. By the same token, if someone doesn’t like it, she doesn’t really care.
All of the members of the Trapcast are relatively new to gaming and occasionally, they are a bit uninformed about the industry, particular games and mechanics. My inner fat beard alternatively wants to yell facts at them, or to teach them about what they don’t know and I wonder why I bother listening at all.
It never takes me long to remember, though. The Trapcast is both ridiculously entertaining and they have still have that new gamer smell. Listening to how excited they get about things that I take for granted as they discover them reminds me of how exciting role-playing games can be and helps keeps me from becoming jaded.
The members of the Trapcast are also on the edge of the push to role play online. The assorted members have not only found in-person groups to play with online, they’ve also played a great deal entirely online.
There is has an interesting format on the Trapcast. Each show, they tackle two topics. George and Brant bring one topic for the show while Jenn and Sara bring another. For approximately half the show, they discuss the Standers’ topic while they discuss the Sitters’ topic for the other half. Hopefully, I do not have to explain why one group is called the Standers and the other group is called the Sitters.
When I was considering writing this article, I was afraid that I was going to have to report that the Trapcast had podfaded. However, I’m glad to say that as of last week, they’ve returned from what surprisingly turned out to actually be a hiatus.
First and foremost, the Trapcast is preeminently entertaining. It is usually a wild trip down the rabbit hole, but a trip that will leave you laughing out loud.