Special Episode: Conspiracy Theories and Cults with Bence Szlamka (part 1)

In our recent episodes about cults, we mentioned how social media has blurred the line between cults and conspiracy theories. Phenomena like QAnon display many cult-like attributes but lack formal leadership. We thought it would be interesting to dig into this a little more.

As none of us knows much about modern conspiracy theories, we turned to our good friend Bence Szlamka for help. Those of you on our Discord server will know Bence as TRNSHMN, one of the moderators there. While Bence is clear that he is not a scholar, he has spent a great deal of time studying conspiracy theories. Scott talked to Bence for a couple of hours, delving into the darker corners of QAnon, the anti-vaccination movement, flat-Earthers, and other cult-like conspiracy theories.

While we tried to keep the tone relatively light, some of these conspiracy theories revolve around unpleasant ideas. QAnon, especially, embraces various beliefs about the abuse, trafficking and sacrifice of children. We avoid going into too much detail, but be warned that we at least touch upon these subjects. In the end, however, this is an RPG podcast, and our focus is to find inspiration for our games.

This turned into quite a long discussion, so we have split it into two episodes. Join us in a fortnight for the conclusion, when Bence and Scott talk about some even stranger contemporary conspiracy theories.

Links

Things we mention in this episode include:

QAnon logo

We’re back with the last of our current run of lockdown specials. As COVID restrictions are lifting and people are emerging from their homes, blinking at the light like molemen, we thought we would at least pause production.

This episode is another scan through the dial on our televisions, looking for ideas for games. Not that our televisions have dials. Or, in the case of one of us, that we even own televisions.

These lockdown episodes have been a way of thanking our Patreon backers for sticking with us through these difficult times. We are releasing them on the off-weeks between our normal episodes.

If you would like to gain access to these special episodes, simply back us on Patreon at any level. We will continue to release our standard episodes every fortnight as usual.

If you are already a backer, you will find a post in your Patreon feed with a download link. The episode will also appear in our special Patreon RSS feed.

Things we mention in this episode include:

We’re back with another of our lockdown specials. Once again, we’re devouring books like hungry bookworms, hoping they’ll give us ideas for games.

These lockdown episodes are a way of thanking our Patreon backers for sticking with us through these difficult times. We are releasing them on the off-weeks between our normal episodes.

If you would like to gain access to these special episodes, simply back us on Patreon at any level. We will continue to release our standard episodes every fortnight as usual.

If you are already a backer, you will find a post in your Patreon feed with a download link. The episode will also appear in our special Patreon RSS feed.

Things we mention in this episode include:

We’re back and we’re going on our summer holidays. Of course, all this lockdown stuff means that we’re all somewhat limited in our options. With this in mind, we thought we’d take you on an audio tour of some of our favourite unusual places. Sure, at least one of them isn’t actually there anymore, but given that we’re used to making places up entirely, this is still a step up. It just means that you’ll have to source your own overpriced souvenirs.

Main Topic: Unusual Places

After the last few episodes, we thought we’d leave the cultists alone for a bit. Instead, this episode offers some unusual places from the real world, along with our thoughts about how we might use them in games of Call of Cthulhu. Such locations form the foundations of many of our scenarios, as a quick flick through our back catalogue might indicate.

Once again, the lockdown means we recorded this episode remotely. We hope that we’re getting the hang of making this sound all right. It’s far from the biggest problem current circumstances have presented, but it’s still a challenge.

Links

Things we mention in this episode include:

One of the more picturesque gateways to Hell
That’s a lot of mashed potato
Speaking of entrances to Hell…
Large pyramid. Church for scale.
Large stone circle. Entire bloody village for scale.

News

More Lockdown Specials

We are still releasing fortnightly lockdown specials, discussing films, books and television you might find inspirational to your gaming lives. If you are already backing us on Patreon, check your feed. Otherwise, backing us at any level will grant you instant access to the back catalogue.

We’re back with another of our lockdown specials. Once again, we’re watching some unusual films, hoping they’ll give us ideas for games.

These lockdown episodes are a way of thanking our Patreon backers for sticking with us through these difficult times. We are releasing them on the off-weeks between our normal episodes.

If you would like to gain access to these special episodes, simply back us on Patreon at any level. We will continue to release our standard episodes every fortnight as usual.

If you are already a backer, you will find a post in your Patreon feed with a download link. The episode will also appear in our special Patreon RSS feed.

Things we mention in this episode include: