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  1. #1
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    Gaming Podcasts (as in podcasts for gaming)

    Now I love 4x games and grand strategy games but after an hour the music is either grating or becomes complete white noise. So I normally listen to music or chat on skype or what have you but I'm in the mood to listen to something that would make my time spent feel a bit more... constructive.

    So can anyone recommend some good documentary or educational podcasts? I don't mind the topic so long as they're well told but a few of my preferred topics would be


    • Ancient history particularly Chinese or Japanese
    • Modern history (not WW1 or WW2 though as I've just rewatched the World at War boxset and I'm all Nazied out)
    • Current medical research/journal discussion (just a layman but still fascinated)
    • Anything that isn't sport


    So any recommendations?

  2. #2
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    Do you listen to Dan Carlin's Hardcore History? It's the only history podcast I subscribe to, and it's pretty good.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Fumarole's Avatar
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    The Medallion of the Imperial Psychopath, a Napoleon: Total War AAR
    For the Emperor!, a Total War: Shogun 2: Fall of the Samurai AAR

  4. #4
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    @Random_Guy
    I have heard of them but never tried them. But I'll definitely give them a go especially now I see they have a ten hour documentary on the fall of Rome, get in.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus vinraith's Avatar
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    The gold standard:

    The History of Rome

  6. #6
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    I really enjoy some of the In Our Time podcasts available from the Beeb on iTunes. Topics vary massively but some I've enjoyed or ones I'm looking forward to include:

    Game Theory
    The Trojan War
    Shinto

    I let them stack up and then I have something to choose from.

    Another BBC podcast I've been meaning to listen to is Things We Forget To Remember, which has some promising titles if nothing else (only 4 exist though).

  7. #7
    Lesser Hivemind Node eRa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinraith View Post
    The gold standard:

    The History of Rome
    Just started listening to this, seems amazing.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus vinraith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eRa View Post
    Just started listening to this, seems amazing.
    It's pretty great, yeah. I had a long commute all last semester and it was an absolute joy to spend it listening to THoR.

    When you're done with that one, I'd also recommend the podcast that inspired it: 12 Byzantine Rulers: The History of the Byzantine Empire. The same guy also has an in-progress podcast on Norman history which seems well done, too: Norman Centuries.

    I just started listening to these two, which also seem promising:

    The Ancient World

    The History of England

    But yeah, anyone that hasn't listened to The History of Rome should start there.

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Tritagonist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinraith View Post
    I'd also recommend the podcast that inspired it: 12 Byzantine Rulers: The History of the Byzantine Empire.
    Lars Brownworth's podcast on a selection of Roman Emperors is great, if only because they ruled over a thousand-year long Empire that is barely given a moment's notice in most History classes. Definitely recommended!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bhazor View Post
    my preferred topics would be

    • Ancient history particularly Chinese or Japanese
    • Modern history (not WW1 or WW2 though as I've just rewatched the World at War boxset and I'm all Nazied out)
    • Anything that isn't sport
    Some of my favourites that match these descriptions:

    The China History Podcast by Laszlo Montgomery (iTunes / Website). This is a non-chronological show. The host picks random subjects from all of Chinese History and spends one, sometimes two or even more, episodes talking about said subject. The host's interest in China and its history is very obvious (he does a lot of business there), and his light-hearted style is good fun and I've found it to be a great way to get up to speed with the basics of a subject I previously knew embarrassingly little about.

    A Short History of Japan by Cameron Foster (iTunes / Website). The host traces the history of Japan from its earliest mythological roots. The pace is a little slow, but the host knows his history, and has a lot of modern day fun facts mixed in to the narrative.

    The Thomas Jefferson Hour
    by Clay Jenkinson & David Swenson (iTunes / Website). Weekly discussion between history scholar Jenkinson and host Swenson, a Grammy nominated documentary videographer in his own right. Jenkinson often takes up the persona of Jefferson for the first half of the show, in a style familiar to those who've seen, or been to, Colonial Williamsburg. The discussed topics are often related to Thomas Jefferson's politics, life and other relevant subjects from the 1760s to 1820s.

    The History Chicks
    by 'The History Chicks' (iTunes / Website). The two hosts usually discuss the life of a notable woman during each of their shows. It's very biographical, but it's regularly quite interesting nonetheless. Think of it as a good balance to the heavily male dominated history you find elsewhere.

    History Extra Podcast by BBC History Magazine (iTunes / Website). These podcasts usually consist of two medium-length interviews with people who've written a piece for the current BBC History Magazine. Quite interesting, though subjects are often very British.

    Europe from its Origins by Joseph Hogarty (iTunes / Website). Probably the podcast (it's actually video, though mostly paintings and maps - so you can listen to it without missing too much) with the most surprising new information. It deals with European history between 400 and 1400 or so. The host isn't the most exciting person in podcastland, but he seems to really know his history, which is what it's all about. Episodes are about an hour long, and no new episodes are scheduled.

    Three Moves Ahead Podcast by Troy Goodfellow and Flash of Steel (iTunes / Website). Panel discussion about strategy games, both new and old. They usually have an interesting guest on from the gaming media, or developers of the games they are discussing.
    Last edited by Tritagonist; 01-06-2012 at 06:17 PM.
    "He has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to
    the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free". ~
    Luke 4:18

  10. #10
    Lesser Hivemind Node TillEulenspiegel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinraith View Post
    The gold standard:

    The History of Rome
    Hearing English-style Latin pronunciation makes me cringe (vowel sounds in English are an ugly mess), but otherwise it's quite good.

  11. #11
    Network Hub grasskit's Avatar
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    ive been enjoying H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast. where they discuss author's various stories, influences etc. its actually pretty fun and not as boring as it may sound

  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus vinraith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TillEulenspiegel View Post
    Hearing English-style Latin pronunciation makes me cringe (vowel sounds in English are an ugly mess), but otherwise it's quite good.
    Mike readily admits that his pronunciation is a mess, especially early on in the podcast. It's unfortunate, but well worth tolerating for the content.

  13. #13
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    Well I'm half way through Hardcore History's Death Throes of Rome series. Its really rather excellent.
    Though Carlins habit of SUDDENLY SHOUTING in the middle of a sentence is really distracting when you're trying to balance fiscal policy across your empire. Likewise the bursts of background music seemingly played at random.

  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Tritagonist's Avatar
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    Hehe, yes Dan does have his moments of sudden excitement. It's not a style I like listening to for hours on end, but I do appreciate his perspective on most things.
    "He has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to
    the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free". ~
    Luke 4:18

  15. #15
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    Amusingly he seems to mostly yell whilst quoting contemporary Roman scholars. So I get the impression of every Roman biographer at the time ending every sentence with a "!?!?!". Like the equivalent of "I tell you, that shit was crazy. I mean, FUCK!".

    Oh and good call on Three Steps Ahead.
    Definitely the only gaming podcast I look forward to (sorry RPS and PCGamer) but like I said in the OP it's not quite what I'm looking for.

    Well that is literally about 300 hours of history podcasts there. So moving on, are there any good science/medicine focused podcasts out there?
    I'm probably a couple notches above a layman (second year biomedical student) but am by no means an expert. Any good news or further education level podcasts you could recommend?
    Last edited by Bhazor; 02-06-2012 at 09:00 PM.

  16. #16
    Network Hub Namdrol's Avatar
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    any reason you're keen on podcasts? Personally, I prefer things with editors, factcheckers, and good production values.

    There are some pretty good audibooks out there (eg.Mao: the unknown story), and the economist publishes an mp3 version of their magazine every week.

  17. #17
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    Im still on Written, but Podcast is great with great casters

  18. #18
    Lesser Hivemind Node Bhazor's Avatar
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    Just found a good un for anyone interested in Genetics or Medicine.
    Naked Genetics

    Made by the Naked Scientist team and co-authored by the Genetics Society (the longest running genetics organisation in the world) it seems like the good shit.
    “People will kill you over time, and how they’ll kill you is with tiny, harmless phrases, like “be realistic”
    Dylan Moran

  19. #19
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    Apologies in advance, I think most of this isn't strictly educational enough for your purposes, but they're all things that have struck me as stand-out brilliant. (Also sorry for my sometimes broken English)

    History:
    The Hackney Podcast tells some good local lore and gives you that sort of satisfied feeling small history does, like you've just heard something special. (Night and Coffee are my favorites)

    The Memory Palace There's a different focus each episode, and it's possibly more whimsical than what you're after, but each short describes some strange, interesting past happening you're unlikely to hear about elsewhere, and there's a lot of value in that. (Nee Weinberg, The Messrs. Craft)

    Possibly check out Lapham's Quarterly too; more miss than hit, but I'd recommend giving the archives a look over. The British Library Podcast gets some good speakers on occasion as well, and there's always The Reith Lectures.

    Not Sports

    Miette's Bedtime Story Podcast Stories that tend towards the nonchalantly weird. (The Dark Lantern, The Bound Man)

    New Yorker Fiction Podcast Writers for the New Yorker pick their favorite shorts from the backlog to read and discuss. If you're going to listen to anything I'm posting, I'm holding out for this one - hearing authors talk about stories they love, often first read when they were kids or just starting out, gives a pleasant perspective to fall into, and the stories themselves are just proper stunning. (A Village After Dark, Symbols and Signs, Paper Lantern, The Reverse Bug, The Swimmer)

  20. #20
    Lesser Hivemind Node eRa's Avatar
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    The History of Byzantium picks up where The History of Rome ends, it's similiar in style and length, worth listening to.

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