Episode 1: Michael Curtis and The Chained Coffin

For this premiere episode, I’ve imposed upon my good friend and well-known podcast pilot episode test subject, Mr. Michael Curtis, to show up and help me broadcast strange voices across the Internet. Among his many fine RPG works is an adventure called The Chained Coffin, and that’s what we’re going to discuss tonight. What were the challenges and rewards of taking mid-20th century Appalachian folklore and adapting it to a medieval fantasy RPG setting? What works of literature, art, and music inspired him? What were his design goals in doing this? I’ll ask Manly Mike Curtis all these questions and more.

Welcome to this new experiment in podcasting, Designers & Discourses.

Works and influences discussed on this show:

The Chained Coffin – DCC RPG

Who Fears the Devil? – The Complete Silver John

Lead Belly “In the Pines”

The Descent (2005)

The Legend of Hillbilly John (1974)

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3 Responses to “Episode 1: Michael Curtis and The Chained Coffin”

  1. David Powers says:

    Michael Curtis is dead on when after mentioning William Faulkner, he wonders if we should also be including non-pulp literary works as influences. I know Vornheim, in the “Further Reading” section, lists magical realist Julio Cortazar as an influence, which blew my mind because he’s amazing but somewhat obscure at least to English speakers.

    I don’t want to say too much and give away my plans, but I can definitely think of some other 20th century literature that could be used to develop unique and fantastic settings!

    One recent example would be the city New Crubozon from “Perdido Street Station” by China Miéville, along with other fiction related to the New Weird.

  2. Great podcast and a very interesting interview! Thanks :-]

  3. Just discovered the podcast.

    You have a new fan.


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