Listen to This: A Life Well Wasted

If you’re looking for an extremely well done but different type of podcast on video games, look no further than A Life Well Wasted. Unfortunately, the podcast has been on hiatus for over a year as the creator, Robert Astley pursues a music career. All six of the episodes, however, are worth the listen.  In fact, I’d go so far to say that these are some of the only shows I’d ever pay to listen to. Here’s a quick recap of the episodes. I highly suggest you listen to them immediately. If you’re not that into games, I still think you’d love Episodes Two and Three. They’re that well done.

Episode One: The Death of EGM– If you’re like me you had a subscription to EGM and read it religiously every month. When I was a kid I said I wanted to grow up and play for the Bulls but even then I knew that wasn’t possible. What I really wanted to do was write for EGM. The episode catches up with some of the old editors and talks about the final days at the company. More than the death of EGM, however, the episode deals with the death of an era. While having the Internet certainly gives us more access and information and we wouldn’t go back if we had the option, there’s a certain nostalgia associated with the magazine era. Never again will we be able to receive that much new information at one time.

Episode Two: Gotta Catch ‘Em All– Robert Astley goes to a vintage pinball museum and once again analyzes the ending of an era, this time that of the pinball machines. He also looks at a program in place at Stanford looking to catalog the history of gaming. The most interesting segment looks at the death of an online MMORPG. The final moments are captured on tape and while incredibly nerdy, they’re also very touching.

Episode Three: Why Game– Astley asks the question of why people play games. You’ll hear a variety of answers, some of which I agreed with and some of which enraged me. At the very least it will make you consider the question for yourself. In addition, he talks with Jason Rohrer the creator of Passage. After listening to the episode I ran out and purchased the game, which some refer to as one of the most artistic games ever created.

Episode Four: Artists, Fans & Engineers– Not my favorite of the episodes, but still very listenable. Astley talks with a cosplayer and some fan fiction radio guys.

Episode Five: Help!– The highlight of this episode is talking with the guys who first started playing Desert Bus for Hope as a way to support charity.

Episode Six: Big Ideas– Probably my least favorite, the episode is a bunch of listening calling in talking about their game ideas. Again, it’s well done, however, it didn’t resonate with me the same way most of the other episodes did.

468 ad