The Adventure Zone: The The Adventure Zone Zone: Balance Finale Edition
August 24, 2017 9:59 AM - Subscribe

Everyone's favorite talk show about a podcast hosted by the participants in said podcast is back! This time, we're talking about the end of the Balance campaign, answering a bunch of listener questions and talking about what's next for the show!
posted by Tevin (15 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I totally forgot this was happening today!

The more I've sat with the finale the more I've decided I liked it. Interested to hear what the boys think and to hear what's next!
posted by Tevin at 10:02 AM on August 24, 2017

Oh my God you guys, fifteen minutes and ... making me a little weepy.
posted by Tevin at 10:16 AM on August 24, 2017 [1 favorite]

I really like those meta episodes, less because I desire answers to things left unanswered, but because I like hearing the McElroys reflect on their character actions, favorite moments, missed opportunities and such.

... I just wish they would listen back to previous TTAZZ episodes because for me it feel like half of these questions have been answered before, at least once. :)

(Then again, those questions got asked again, and it's probably fair to revisit them, now that the campaign is over.)
posted by bigendian at 12:27 PM on August 24, 2017 [2 favorites]

I got choked up when Clint started talking about his wife.
posted by meese at 10:50 PM on August 24, 2017 [7 favorites]

aaaaaaaaa Travis doing an old west campaign and Clint doing superheroes I am IN!
posted by jason_steakums at 6:35 PM on August 25, 2017

FUCK YES Justin agreed to DM! He's said before that he's not interested in sitting behind the screen and historically he has to be goaded into creativity but especially near the end he's been putting a ton of thought into worldbuilding and characterization. He spends so much time playing the humble idiot (early taako, the not-doctor on sawbones, everything on MBMBAM) that I just really want to see him stretch out and be the wacky mastermind. He seems pretty smart when he lets himself be, and he might have the best instinct for dramatic timing out of any of the mcelroys.

Other than that not much to say. I wish there were a clearer explanation for the joaquin thing*, I like that Griffin made the angus=dragon theory semi-canon, the real life background was sweet, and I for one am pretty stoked to hear them experiment without any weight of long-term plot holding them down for a while.

He mentioned listening to Friends at the Table at one point and I've seen him and Austin Walker talking in a couple of different videos. I'd really love to see one guest on the other's podcast or both co-DM a short campaign or something. I've been listening to back episodes of that and Austin is really good at coming up with choices that are obvious traps with brilliant roleplaying hooks (e.g. 'you can get out safely but your character's best friend is going to lose something important') and drawing the players into creating the world with him. Honestly I'd just love to have more guest players in general. The HR guy and Lin Manuel Miranda were both really fun.

*I like the explanation that there are normally thousands of bonds between planes, but because of the hunger there was literally one working bond carrying the weight of thousands of relationships all crammed into two people.
posted by fomhar at 10:03 PM on August 25, 2017

They didn't address the question which has been driving me bonkers, which is who gave them the damn IPRE patches??
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:11 AM on August 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

I assumed it was Pringles, being controlled by Barry. They got the patches the same time they learned Pringles was in jail.
posted by meese at 8:48 AM on August 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'm most excited about Clint GMing and glad it's the first of the upcoming new episodes (in 1.5 months, I guess... *sigh*). I feel like this constellation might utilize their talents the best (aside from the "old" one, obviously. Griffin is a master storyteller.)

Aside from that, Clint really seems to embrace The Adventure Zone as his "profession" lately, having quit his radio work and being really engaging with fans on twitter.

Most of all, I hope we're getting some of the imbecility of the first three Balance arcs back. (Although some of it arose, I'm afraid, out of the boys inexperience and inability in all things D&D and their podcast not being this huge franchise (yet).)
posted by bigendian at 12:47 PM on August 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

Something that makes me a little bummed listen to this was them talking about people complaining about things or not understanding them or doubting them. Or like when Justin was saying he hoped people understood how much of Taako's selfish-ness was a put on, because like yeah that was very clear to me and what I thought was so great and entertaining about the show. For whatever reason the idea of them being stressed about their fans misunderstanding them makes me feel stressed on their behalf. Because all of this stuff just seemed really obvious to me.
posted by bleep at 2:20 PM on August 26, 2017 [3 favorites]

On having finished the ep one of my favorite things about them as a creative team family I guess? Is that they have healthy enough boundaries to be explicit like hey this is what we're doing, we hope you come along for the ride; if you're not into it that's fine, but you don't get a vote. I felt like that was so enjoyable to hear it's like entertainment in and of itself.
posted by bleep at 3:59 PM on August 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

I wonder if they'll have more TTAZZ episodes in between their shorter arcs as post-mortem discussions. Their meta discussions are always super fascinating.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 8:36 AM on August 27, 2017

Also super cool to hear some more details about Griffin's story-building process. He had always described it as establishing big story points and then letting THB fill in details, but it was nice to hear an example - that the Umbra Staff was always meant to be Taako's (and that Griffin just avoided a BS DM move by the rolls cooperating) and was always going to contain a Red Robe but the details of who that trapped wizard would be resulted from Justin's role-playing. That's a level and type of influence I hadn't even considered when Griffin described his process earlier - that, essentially, Griffin created the staff but Justin created Lup with his character choices.
posted by range at 8:54 AM on August 27, 2017

Between wrapping up THB and stopping Bachelor coverage on Rose Buddies, Griffin is making some bold choices that could lose listeners, but keep him sane.
posted by drezdn at 10:14 AM on August 28, 2017

When Clint mentioned "five students" coming up to him at work, I legitimately thought for a second that he meant at his job as a high school janitor.
posted by rollick at 1:37 PM on August 28, 2017

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