Carie Varner is an artist, a mother, a drinker of much Pepsi and on occasion, funny.
She graduated from the American Academy of Art in Chicago with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree (who needs to eat?). Her artwork is available to view and purchase on her Facebook page.
Carie was known as AMC Mike when she helped co-host the film-centered radio show and podcast Lights Camera Cleveland.
Her first gaming book was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Other Strangeness, and she's played everything from World of Darkness to Earthdawn, and even some game with THACO. She's LARPed in three different networked organizations, holding organizational positions in two. She's also helped playtest LARPs, including Shadow Run (the costumes were so cool!). Carie is currently the head storyteller for River Valley Rage, a Vampire LARP in Tennessee.
MUD/MUCK/MUSHes have been a big part of her life, too. She's played in many, and the constant typing has improved her grammar, her typing speed and to a lesser degree, her speling. She's role-played in Hogsmeade, on a 5th World in a different universe, in classic books and in completely newly-crafted universes. She's ran several as well, including a high school for super heroes and a small Appalachian town during World War II set in the Supernatural universe.
Episode | July 17th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 7 mins
downtimes, feedback, geeks, idaho, larp, mush, requests, roleplaying games
What happens to characters in between games? The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite take a look at the between games antics of characters, players and storytellers as they examine downtime actions, online or email scenes and player requests. Ryan, Carie and Jason work through the challenges and expectations of what happens between games.
Episode | July 10th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 13 mins
community, dungeon master, geeks, hints, roleplaying games, running a game, scenes, storytelling, vampire, white wolf
The very first time anyone runs a game can be nerve-wracking. The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite navigate through advice and suggestions to help make running your first game less stressful and more successful. Breaking it down into what a new DM/Storyteller should do before, during and after their first game, Ryan, Carie and Jason do their best to help any novice game runner have a successful experience. They also take a few minutes to address the current controversy surrounding White Wolf's release of Vampire 5th Edition.
Episode | July 4th, 2018 | Season 1 | 59 mins 54 secs
beginning, end, geeks, middle, roleplaying games, scenes, storytelling
A great story in a roleplaying game is made up of many different scenes The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite get into the nuts and bolts of what makes a scene work. Examining all of the pieces, Ryan, Carie and Jason do a deep dive into the art of constructing a scene that is compelling, exciting, clear and most of all, in service to the overall story.
Episode | June 25th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 1 min
conventions, geeks, hlg con, roleplaying games, storytellers vault, vampire, werewolf
The On A Roll hosts are joined by game designer Josh Heath to talk about his companies, as well as learning all about how to create content for the White Wolf Storyteller's Vault.
Episode | June 16th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 14 mins
dicehead, dungeons and dragons, free rpg day, geeks, kids on bikes, roleplaying games
This special episode celebrates the fun had at Free RPG Day! The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite spent the day at Dicehead Comics and Games in Cleveland, Tennessee, where they played a ton of Dungeons & Dragons, got some great free shwag from some wonderful games and got to know a gaggle of local gamers in our community! Join Ryan, Carie and Jason as they get down in the trenches with Chad, Painter, Benito, Ian, Stacy, Marty, Scott and Dakota!
Episode | June 12th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 5 mins
antagonists, bad guys, evil, geeks, npcs, roleplaying games, villains
This week's episode is tuned to the key of E vil as the Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite explore the differences between villains and bad guys. Ryan, Carie and Jason debate the finer points of constructing great antagonists and how these NPCs interact with the story being told.
Episode | June 5th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 2 mins
geeks, mistakes, roleplaying games, storytelling, trust
Nobody's perfect, not even the Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite. Delving deep into their gaming history, Ryan, Carie and Jason tell the stories of the greatest mistakes they ever made while storytelling for roleplaying games. When it's all over, they're a bit surprised to discover a common theme in their ways...
Episode | May 29th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 2 mins
community, externals, geeks, internals, no, patience, players, roleplaying games, trust
We are all players. Some of us are better players than others, but what qualities make a player "good?" The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite take some time this week to delve into the traits that make a great player. Dividing the conversation into the Internals and Externals, they get into the meat of things we all can do to play better and have more fun.
Episode | May 22nd, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 8 mins
community, geeks, roleplaying games, safety, toxic
Role-playing game communities, like most communities, have become increasingly aware of issues like safety, inclusion and behavioral problems. This week, The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite tackle the difficult and often uncomfortable topic of toxic players, toxic game runners and toxic environments in the world of tabletop RPGs, LARP and MUSH, and they explore ways we can all help to make our gaming spaces healthier.
Episode | May 17th, 2018 | Season 1 | 55 mins 24 secs
characters, creativity, geeks, plot, roleplaying games, setting
Where do ideas come from? The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite explore the process of creativity and how great ideas are born. Join Ryan, Carie and Jason as they talk about coming up with ideas for plots, characters and settings.
Episode | April 29th, 2018 | Season 1 | 54 mins 50 secs
conventions, geeks, lexicon, magpie games, masks, roleplaying games, the region
The Favorite had to work, so The Curmudgeon and the Legend went to Lexicon, an amazing gaming convention in Lexington, Kentucky. After playing in some tabletop games there, they bring in the show's first guest, The Pollack, to talk about convention games. Covering everything from planning, promoting and actually running a con game, Ryan, Carie and Chris do their best to figure out the formula to make running and playing con games be as much fun as possible.
Episode | April 18th, 2018 | Season 1 | 58 mins
abuse, assault, geeks, roleplaying games, safety, sex, triggers
The Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite tackle the difficult subject of The Unpermissibles – the triggering topics that should really never be used as plots in your games. Join Ryan, Carie and Jason as they discuss maintaining player safety, understanding why the Unpermissibles are so damaging and how to navigate them within games you play or run.
Episode | April 10th, 2018 | Season 1 | 55 mins 55 secs
geeks, genre, roleplaying games
This week, the Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite talk about the importance of clearly understanding and communicating what the game you are running is to your players to help balance expectation and manage the feel. It's about Communication, interpretation and expectation.
Episode | April 4th, 2018 | Season 1 | 1 hr 6 mins
accessibility, bleed, buzzwords, geeks, immersion, nordic larp
In their second episode, the Curmudgeon, the Legend and the Favorite discuss the current epidemic of buzzwords used to market tabletop gaming, LARPing and MUSHing. Accessible, blockbuster, bleed, immersion and transformative are just a few of the words Ryan, Carie and Jason explore.
Episode | April 2nd, 2018 | Season 1 | 56 mins 46 secs
demon master, dungeons & dragons, geeks, marvel superheroes, rpgs, shattered isles
In the very first episode of On A Roll, the Curmudgeon shares the tale of his first tabletop rpg and the demon who ran the game, The Legend recalls her first D&D game and The Favorite talks about his first boffer LARP. It's a trip through time that ends with exploring the idea of first games and how new players navigate their first exposure to the role-playing game hobby.