Want to give back to the hub even more? Specifically, think you’ve made a (non-player) character so cool he deserves to be used and appreciate by others? Then this is the guide for you.
Although podcasts for Shadowrun are quite varied, they can be reduced to any voice production of one or more people, talking about Shadowrun, distributed through a central channel for others to enjoy. Others have focused on Book Reviews, Live Play, Interviews with noteworthy people, and more. At the hub, we view this as a unique avenue to allows players and GM’s to offer some community-building back to the hub as a whole. With that in mind, this guide will first tell you the technical details of how to put together a podcast, and then offer some ideas for what the hub could use most.
Runner’s First Podcast Edit
You’ll need a microphone (USB is fine), and a computer capable of recording that input. If you’ve ever used skype during a session, you’re very likely set up
Although most computers come with a basic audio recording setup that is passable, one can always use free software to good effect. Options include audacity, and acoustica, but whatever you can use effectively is fine.
You can’t just go off recording a stream-of-consciousness podcast and expect people to tune in. Beyond the ‘ah’s and ‘um’s, there’s your target length to consider, and making sure all the topics are well covered. To that end, a script is recommended before you ever begin recording – it’s a hell of a lot easier to edit text than sounds. Every script should have a few components: an introduction with your name, your podcast name (if any), and a basic introduction of what you’re going to be talking about today. This helps orient the listener, and it’s okay to refer back to the outline of events when moving on if you have a lengthy discussion. Finally, have some sort of outro to let the listener know the podcast is ending, and perhaps invite them back for next time.
Now, finally, you can begin recording. Have any references handy (this includes the script!) so you minimize pausing during the recording. Stick to the main components of what you want to talk about, but if inspiration strikes and it is relevant to the discussion at hand, go for it. Finally, as when doing any public speaking, try to minimize your vocal interjections that don’t add anything for the listener. Worst case scenario, you can edit out breaks later.
Use those programs from earlier to edit your program. Although each program has its own guides, basic tips include minimizing dead space, equalizing sound between speakers, decreasing background noise while still maintaining audibility.
While there are a variety of platforms out there for a private podcaster, podcasting on the hub is a simpler matter. Simply upload your sound file to a filehosting site of your choosing (Drive, Dropbox, or Soundcloud are good starting places). Next, post the link to the hub. Upkeep Division will take it from there and host it on the wiki in a central repository.
Community Building via Podcast Edit
The initial use for these community podcasts is to share NPC's, especially contacts, amongst Runners. Been on a run and admired that cool technomancer contact your party Face used to get good surveillance footage? Ask him to describe her in a short audio 'cast, and now everyone can benefit from her knowledge. For those who are recording about a specific NPC, there are some details that every NPC needs to be fully fleshed out:
- Name and Alias(es)
- Minimum contact Connection and Loyalty
- Location and Availability
- Talents and skills: Need not be specific as a contact's willingness to help is limited by their C/L
- Limits and Phobias: Are they afraid of gangs? Won't work to hurt innocents?
- Brief Backstory: Embellish as desired to flesh out your character for yourself and others.