Today we are featuring Bill Corey Jr., host of The Cubist Podcast and part time contributor to the What Did You Play This Week podcast. The Cubist is a weekly, live YouTube chat on Monday evenings at 10 p.m. EST co-hosted by G2S organizer Kimberly. Every week there is a different guest, and an entirely new board game related topic. Tonight's show is all about indie game design and featuring Grant Rodiek of Hyperbole Games and G2S alumni designer Bobby Fowler of Almost A Game. Next week we are featuring Ilan Mitchell-Smith and discussing miniature games, and painting techniques. Bill will be joining us in April for #G2S17 which he has lovingly renamed Bill's Birthday Bash. He will be joining us all the way from Wisconsin. Let's make sure to show him some birthday love, and play some games with him. Don't worry Bill, there can definitely be cake.
THREE RANDOM FACTS ABOUT BILL:
Bill's mother did two pieces of artwork for the three original D&D rule-books (some refer to that set at "the white box").
His right foot somewhat resembles a cloven hoof due to a car accident in 2011.
Bill attended every Gen Con between 1985 and 2010, 25 years in a row.
Questions by Kimberly Bullock (KB), answers by Bill Corey Jr. (BC).
THREE BOARD GAME MEDIA RELATED QUESTIONS:
KB: What inspired you to initially get into the world of board game media creation?
BC: I think there are a LOT of smart people in our hobby that have some interesting viewpoints to share on their particular niches, and I enjoy having conversations with them to let them share those viewpoints with others. It's also a way for me to introduce myself to them and get to know some fantastic folks in a hobby I love.
Speaking of which: I've been a tabletop gamer for over 35 years now, and as such I've seen and experienced a lot of the different sides and aspects of the modern gaming industry. I've worked as a convention organizer, worked with publishers assembling games in a warehouse, worked in the dealer hall at big conventions selling product and demoing games, and I grew up around the RPG side of tabletop gaming as a child. I feel as if my history in gaming gives me a unique perspective on the hobby, and I enjoy sharing that perspective with others.
KB: What made you decide to switch The Cubist Podcast from standard podcast format to a live YouTube chat?
BC: Time. Or, I guess I mean a lack of time. When I was doing The Cubist as a standard audio podcast, I would spend a couple hours preparing for the show, then about 2 hours recording with the guest creating the content itself, then usually something to the tune of 5-6 hours editing the content down to a finished product I found acceptable, then perhaps an hour publishing it to the website. Then there was the time spent reaching out to people to find guests every week to keep the content fresh. All told, I was spending about 15 hours a week on the show, and that time commitment became too much for me to sustain. I enjoyed (most of) the process, but it was just too much.
Now that I do the show on YouTube, I've managed to get that time commitment down to about 5-6 hours a week, which is much more manageable. I also really enjoy the live, less forced nature of the YouTube format. Being able to see the faces of the people you're talking to allows for a much more natural, organic style of conversation that I think translates well for the viewers. I still prepare questions to start the conversation off and for the Rapid Fire segment, but other than that I try to let the conversation flow how and where it wants.
There's also the incredible perk of interacting with our viewers. Because we stream the show live, people that are watching live can ask questions of our guests and get a realtime response. Sometimes the viewer questions get us to consider an aspect of the topic that perhaps we hadn't considered (or at least hadn't thought about discussing). I really enjoy knowing that some of our viewers have embraced this aspect of the show and get involved as well. It's a lot of fun.
KB: (This is totally a cheaty two part question) What are the perks of creating BG media? What have been the challenges?
BC: I really enjoy doing The Cubist. For me, that enjoyment is the biggest reason to do it. If you aren't having a good time creating content, you shouldn't bother doing it; no one gets rich as a board gaming media creator (well, except maybe for Tom Vasel, I guess, but that's a whole different world we're talking about there, heh!). You pretty much have to love what you do, or you'll burn out on it very quickly and end up dreading it.
As far as challenges go, mostly I struggle with trying to come up with fresh new ideas for show topics, and then finding people that have interesting viewpoints on those topics. I am not the world's best planner when left to my own devices, so sometimes I have a hard time getting all my ducks in a row to get a show plotted out in advance. Luckily I have an excellent co-host that is great at that sort of thing and is willing to help me stay on target. :)
THREE QUESTIONS JUST FOR FUN:
KB: As a man from the state known for cheese, what is your favorite kind of cheese?
BC: Ha! I'm not gonna fall for your trick question! Everyone knows different cheeses are ideal for different tasks: Swiss is best on burgers, a good sharp cheddar is excellent on a ham or turkey sandwich, American makes the best grilled cheese sandwiches and colby is great to just snack on.
KB: If you could re-theme any board game which would you re-theme and what theme would you go with?
BC: I really love The Colonists, but I think it could have a much more interesting theme. Maybe each player is building their own amusement park, and the workers are the different types of staff manning the different attractions.
KB: What are you most looking forward to at #G2S17 ?
BC: FINALLY, an easy question: CAKE. I have been promised birthday cake for #BillsBirthdayBash, and I'm excited to admire its beauty and then eat it. I also expect a four part harmony rendition of "Happy Birthday" sang to me by the staff and attendees. I respect the amount of work I know each and every one of you will be putting in so you can make this happen for me... right? RIGHT?!
I'm kidding, of course. I've never been to New England, and so I'm very excited to see a new part of the country, hang out with all the amazing people that will be there, and play all the games! (There's also a small chance I might drive up to Maine and stalk Stephen King at some point, but don't mention that part, okay?)