For someone outside of the industry, or even the grizzled veteran, learning about the ins and outs of the game industry can be overwhelming. Whether video games, board games, or mobile apps, there are certain nuances to both the business and the production sides of the biz that are not always readily apparent. Listening to these five podcasts should give anyone a good grasp on how game development works, who the major players are, and even the prominent legal issues that developers will face.
Podcast #1 – Board Game University
Board Game University is an amazing podcast featuring Tom Vassel of The Dice Tower fame. On this show, he interviews various board gaming luminaries who share their stories and advice, all while giving the listener a clear picture of how the board game business works.
Podcast #2 – Funding the Dream on Kickstarter
Richard Bliss’s Funding the Dream on Kickstarter podcast is a series of interviews with many creators who have experience using Kickstarter or other crowdfunding methods to fund development of games, among other things. Richard’s wisdom and advice for those who plan to use crowdfunding can be invaluable, as well.
Podcast #3 – Idle Thumbs
Idle Thumbs is more of a traditional podcast than the others, but I find it very valuable in learning about the independent game development scene from some guys who work in the industry. The show is laugh-out-loud funny at times, as well.
Podcast #4 – Entertainment Law Update
Entertainment Law Update is a show about the latest happenings in the field of entertainment law, which sometimes intersects with the game development space. Often, the stories deal with cutting edge intellectual property issues, so a lot can be learned from other industries (film, television, theater) that encounter similar issues. I may be biased, as well, since I used to be an associate producer on the show. Honorable mention goes to This Week in Law, which covers comparable issues from a more high-tech perspective.
Podcast #5 – Infinite Ammo
Featuring interviews with independent game developers, Infinite Ammo is another very valuable podcast for learning about the industry from the ground up. Learn about the perspective of the small developer; it will give anyone the confidence to publish their game.
Other great ‘casts that I listen to regularly are The Dice Tower, The Giant Bombcast, Ludology, and Startup Film School.
If anyone has ideas for other great game development-related podcasts, post them in the comments. I am building a resource page with links to podcasts and other tools on the internet to educate and entertain the game development community.