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Welcome to Ludology, an analytical discussion of the hows and whys of the world of board games. Rather than news and reviews, Ludology explores a variety of topics about games from a wider lens, as well as discuss game history, game design and game players.

We post a new Ludology episode every other week. In these episodes, hosts Erica Bouyouris, Gil Hova, Scott Rogers, and Sen-Foong Lim deep-dive into a single topic within game design, often with a well-regarded guest from the game industry. We generally focus on tabletop game design (mainly board games and RPGs), but we often pull in experts from all forms of games, from video games to escape rooms to slot machines.

On weeks where there is no flagship Ludology episode, we will alternate between two smaller mini-sodes.

GameTek is a long-running feature from the Dice Tower podcast by Ludology co-founder Geoff Engelstein that explores the math and science behind games.  GameTek Classic episodes were once broadcast on The Dice Tower podcast, while other GameTek episodes were recorded specially for Ludology.

Biography of a Board Game is a series hosted by Scott Rogers that explores the history behind classic and modern board games. It was once on The Dice Tower, but has since moved full-time to Ludology.

We aim for most Ludology episodes to be timeless, so you are welcome to explore our entire catalog. Most of it should age quite well. The podcast was started in 2011 by Geoff Engelstein and Ryan Sturm, with Mike Fitzgerald taking over for Ryan in 2015. Gil joined the show in 2017 when Mike stepped aside, and Emma joined in 2019 when Geoff ended his tenure as host. Emma left in 2021, and Erica and Sen joined us.

Have your own thoughts about our topics? We encourage you to visit us at our guild on Boardgamegeek to get involved in a continuing discussion.

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Ludology is made possible through the support and donations of listeners like you.

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Make a one-time donation here. The donation will take you to "Bedbug Comics" - that's Scott's account.

Ludology is part of The Dice Tower Network, the premier board game media network.

Sep 19, 2021

Gil and Sen are delighted to welcome Sara Thompson to discuss depictions of disability in tabletop games. Sara is the creator of the Combat Wheelchair for D&D, and of the Medicine on the Path supplement for The Witcher Pen & Paper RPG.


0m49s: Critical Role, with GM Matt Mercer

3m35s: The D&D campaign Storm King's Thunder.

15m075s: The Greek god Hephaestus.

17m23s: Jennifer Kretchmer's Twitter.

21m35s: The thread in question, in which Sara describes Geralt as disabled and how that significantly affects his story.

25m08s: The Witcher: Baptism of Fire.

32m44s: Lauren Hissrich, showrunner of The Witcher TV show.

33m45s: A sample clip of the very silly Steve Martin film Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid.

46m46s: Amanda Leduk's book Disfigured: On Fairy Tales, Disability, and Making Space.

52m19s: The Witcher: A Tome of Chaos supplement for The Witcher RPG.

53m22s: The Combat Wheelchair was featured on Critical Role episode C2E113 A Heart Grown Cold (at least, we're pretty sure it was!). It was used by NPC Dagen Underthorn. Also, Critter Hug is a show with Critical Role participants Matthew Mercer and Mica Burton interviewing people in the tabletop community. Here's the episode with Sara; you might recognize a couple other friendly faces in the same episode!