Chooch released the first episode of CoHPodcast in October of 2007. He was doing this as a solo podcast, essentially because I was being a big chicken. After a few episodes, I joined the podcast and around that same time we also started the Into the Blender podcast.
At the time, we were playing several times a week and were very much addicted to the game. We have always considered ourselves casual players, since we enjoyed playing through the content rather than the min/maxing and hardcore studying of stats in order to squeeze out every bit of effectiveness from our toon possible. I have great respect for those players that find enjoyment in this aspect, I’m just not one of them. My preference is to grab a toon and jump into the fray with my healing, tanking or damage dealing.
Since then, our lives have become more complex through several different changes. I would credit podcasting itself with the greatest change, expanding our circle of friends and therefore the number of social engagements that we attend. We continued the podcast with our regular schedule until some other issues came into play.
Last year, we considered ending the podcast due to time constraints and guilt at our irregular podcast release schedule. We discussed it at length, sometimes quite passionately. We decided to continue for only one reason: the community. We were literally unable to walk away from the amazing people that we had found through the podcast. We decided to eliminate one aspect that we adored, the feedback segment, in an effort to continue the podcast by lessening the time investment necessary as we found that approximately half of the episode length was relaying the various forms of feedback we had received. Also, this started to feel like a ‘pat ourselves on the back’ segment and although we had it at the end to allow folks to skip it without penalty, it still seemed self-congratulatory since they were overwhelmingly flattering.
We were still unable to keep the schedule, and even our City of Heroes playtime dwindled. I really believe that the lack of time in game led to our reluctance to put out podcasts on a game we were no longer playing on any regular schedule. We started to feel like frauds, but decided to continue because we could at least relay the news items for our listeners.
We finally decided to end the podcast in the fall of last year. We felt we could not end it until we released the long-promised Transcendence Trial vidcast, so we went to work putting that together. We didn’t realize the time investment, so that took longer to release than planned but we finally got it out thanks to the help of friends. The only thing left was to record the last episode. To be honest, we dragged our feet on this, again because we so love the community. While sitting in front of the mic, I suggested we finally do the blooper episode we had been talking about for ages. And maybe give the listeners one last opportunity to give feedback, if they are so inclined.
So it’s done. Episode 50 (Ding!) is recorded and in the wild. We really like that our 50th episode is our last, as it’s currently the highest level attainable in the game. Our end-game content will be at least one more episode, and also anything we find in the future that would be of interest to our gaming-minded listeners will be dropped into the feed. This will include coverage of any gaming panels we attend at upcoming cons.
Feel free to comment at the website, in iTunes, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by voicemail at the Into the Blender number – (413) 669-4720. We have no idea how long it will take to cull through the fifty-plus episodes (including special episodes) to pull out bloopers, and post it to the feed. I think I’ll steal from the CoH devs for this estimate. Soon™.
Good hunting, Heroes!