Today, Held Action becomes a true media complex with the launch of Held Action Theatre, a podcast about role-playing games produced by yours truly. Because not everything game-related that I might want to record really fits Carnagecast‘s raison d’etre, this seemed like a good avenue for actual play recordings, and whatever else I might want to cover outside Carnagecast. Subscribe in your favorite podcatcher to http://feeds.feedburner.com/HeldActionTheatre as we kick off with the Dungeon Bastard’s World’s Worst Dungeon Crawl!
Launching a new podcast is also an opportunity for me to experiment in a couple ways that I wouldn’t feel comfortable doing with someone else’s property, as Carnagecast is. I wanted to try an alternate method of publishing a podcast. Since Held Action is hosted on WordPress.com, much of what could be accomplished a free plugin installed on an independent WordPress instance is a premium service here, like uploading audio and video. Third parties like LibSyn offer the same service. An alternative to that is hosting the audio files on archive.org, a repository of — mostly? — open media.
FeedBurner provides podcast enclosure data that iTunes wants to see. My next task, now the first episode of Held Action Theatre has published and there’s something in the feed for iTunes to see, is to submit the FeedBurner URL to iTunes and see what happens. I’m a little concerned, as there’s a lot of speculation about FeedBurner going away, as it’s a Google service without ongoing support, but that speculation dates back years and FeedBurner appears to continue to function properly. In that respect, Held Action Theatre is a real-time experiment: will FeedBurner keep working? Can I get it listed in iTunes properly? What will a podcast episode look like in the main blog feed?
The second way this is an experiment is I am again taking up the “Fuck it, let’s do it” philosophy, as in An Invocation to Beginnings. I want to do more and create more. I can make whatever pathways I need to do that. So why not start with this? I’m also taking a page from Role Playing Public Radio‘s voluminous actual play library as well: roll the recorder, give a brief intro and otherwise let the players and GM shine — although that guideline didn’t stop me from doing intros and outros; it just kept me from over-producing them.
For the technically-minded, most of the play sessions will be recorded on a Zoom H4n, as 16 bit, 48 kHz WAV files. Currently, they will be edited in good old Audacity, though I am considering exploring Adobe Audition, because the number of times Audacity crashed while processing the audio for World’s Worst Dungeon Crawl was excessive by even my low, Final Cut Pro-loving standards. I’ve stuck with Audacity to date because I want my project files accessible regardless of what OS I’m working in, or whether it’s got pro software installed. I ought to look into whether XML exports are an option here, as in video editing suites.