Prior to the official launch of the show, we're releasing five mini-episodes that allow you the chance to meet the cast and characters. This is part four of the series, and introduces you to Player Steve and his character, Amos.
Click "Read More" for credits and transcripts of the episode.
Scott: [00:00:19] Hello and welcome to Shocking Gasp, a D&D podcast. I'm your host and Dungeon Master, Scott Heckler. We're building up to the launch of the podcast and we thought it would be cool to give you all a few mini episodes to let you meet our cast and characters. This is part 4 of a 5-part series. And today we're meeting my brother Steve. Hello Steve.
Steve: [00:00:38] Hello Scott.
Scott: [00:00:39] I'm sorry I didn't say that right. We're brothers, so I should have said: Hello Steven.
Steve: [00:00:44] Hello Scottward.
Scott: [00:00:46] Yeah that sounds more typical. So what character are you going to be playing?
Steve: [00:00:53] I am playing Amos Vonal.
Scott: [00:00:55] Okay and what race and class is Amos?
Steve: [00:00:58] So Amos is a half-elf and he is a rogue.
Scott: [00:01:03] K. What can you tell us about his story so far?
Steve: [00:01:05] So Amos, he's had kind of uh, his life was interesting, but I don't know how to say it. He doesn't have like a history or a drive. So, basically he's born on the docks. He knew his mother. Her name is Magdela Vonal. His father was an elf. He knows that because, obviously he's a half-elf and his mother is a human. But basically she, she lived a life just kind of hustling on the docks and making money whatever way she could. And he, he was around for that. He did not realize that it was a life that was looked down upon. He actually really enjoyed it, being around the sailors, being around the ships. He liked just being around the actions they have. One of the things that impressed him most and probably is what drives him to sort of be loyal to a group that he's in, is a you know anytime sailors, pirates, whatever in a bar would be going crazy and like a captain would walk in... You know everyone would just goes silent, wait to see what the captain said. It was time to go, calm down. He enjoyed seeing that power and how all these people who were seemingly, just had no direction would all of a sudden stop and see with this one man had to say, so very cool to him. Now he just travels around and tries to make friends. He doesn't really look for a fight, even though he gets into fights quite a bit. He does like wagering, he likes thieving. He thinks if it can be stolen then it was already yours anyway. And he's aspiring to captain his own ship, although because of his life he never seems to have enough money to ever be able to get a ship.
Scott: [00:02:34] So growing up the way he did with his mom and then your general description of his attitude so far, he is not afraid to break the rules. I'm thinking this guy is drifting probably, if he had to be on the good evil spectrum where- where is he? Is he the more of a bad guy or neutral party or what?
Steve: [00:02:51] He's definitely neutral. I mean, if someone's in trouble he would say at his core he's more good because he's apt to help. Like he wouldn't go out of his way to destroy someone or hurt them in any way. You know the thieving that he's doing is small time. You know he's not, he's not looking for revenge. He's actually looking to get along with people and generally have a good time. And just have enough money in his pocket to buy some rum and talk about how he wants to buy a ship. So yeah that's- that's pretty much it. However, when he is in a group because of you know just what he witnessed. He does get the crew mentality and he becomes loyal to the group, which is pretty typical for sailors.
Scott: [00:03:33] So him wanting to become a captain is that because that's the next rung in the sailor profession. Or is he hungering after that power and authority.
Steve: [00:03:42] A bit, I would say a bit of both. He definitely is enthralled with that power. However, it would kind of seem in speaking to him that he would rather talk about how great it would be to be a captain, rather than to ever actually be a captain.
Scott: [00:04:01] Ok. So it's like when you meet a guy who like starts a project, like "I'm going to build this garden in my backyard" and then it never really gets done. He's just always talking about that guy.
Steve: [00:04:10] Yeah. Amos has never finished anything.
Scott: [00:04:12] It's gonna be really cool one day and it's going to be sweet.
Steve: [00:04:16] He can he can finish a bottle pretty good. That's about it.
Scott: [00:04:19] I think we all know a guy likes to tell tales like that. What does Amos look like? Can you give us a description of his appearance?
Steve: [00:04:27] Yeah sure. So he's young for at least for the elf. I'm actually both sides you know he's 28. He's only 5'11".
Scott: [00:04:35] Only?! I'm only five eleven.
Steve: [00:04:38] I'm only five eleven, five ten and a half. So the. Yeah. So he's got the blonde- His hair's blonde. It's sun bleached. It does have some of those, like, I could see a ratty dreadlock, but not on purpose. Y'know?
Scott: [00:04:52] Oh yeah, yeah.
Steve: [00:04:56] It's a little past shoulder length. He does look he looks a little older than he actually is, so he's got some creases on his face, just a little scar on his right cheek, and it's nothing real- He doesn't look like he's actually been in like a lot of battles or anything but, he does look worn down, which probably is mostly from the drinking. He's thin, but he has- Like when you're looking at him, you know, his muscles are defined in a way that you can tell he's still strong. Basically he's wearing a like a loose cotton shirt, baggy brown pants, little like one of those tricorne hats, kind of like that one pirate, Captain Jack Sparrow. But I want to make it clear that-.
Scott: [00:05:39] The worst pirate I've ever heard of.
Steve: [00:05:41] The worst pirate ever. But he's not actually, he's not a pirate. He's truly just a, you know, a sailor aspiring to be a little bit better he is, I suppose. Oh and his eyes, his eyes that was important. Forgot about this. His eyes are gray. I wanted to focus on that because, you know, gray skies, to a sailor, is kind of, you don't know what's going to happen next. You know, so when they see a gray sky, it's either going to clear up or it's about the storm. And that's Amos.
Scott: [00:06:09] Okay. All right. So, so you're handing me a character that we have no idea where he's going to go, and that's exciting, because it sounds like he's going to be shaped by the story rather than him shaping the story.
Steve: [00:06:22] Oh yeah definitely.
Scott: [00:06:24] Cool. Well so let's move on, and meet the man behind the screen. So how about yourself? How long have you been playing Dungeons and Dragons?
Steve: [00:06:34] Well, we do say in the one that I've been playing for one year which is the skill level I'm at. I've played off and on, boy, I don't even want to say- 20 years? I think the first time I played was 20 years ago, but I've never played consistently enough, like I still have to say, "How do I do an acrobatics check?" and stuff like that. So.
Scott: [00:06:53] Yeah.
Steve: [00:06:54] You know, I like, I like the story and the improv and the- I guess some would say the acting part of the game, probably more than the mechanics. So I'm very appreciative that the latest version of D&D has easier mechanics because, you know, I like to roll the dice and I like to get in to confrontations and things. But…
Scott: [00:07:11] Yeah.
Steve: [00:07:12] I like the roleplaying part of the game. So that's what, that's what I've always liked about it. Yep. 20 year- 20 year rookie. 20-year first year.
Scott: [00:07:22] 20-year rookie. So this proof, you see a lot of people online, they'll talk about, they talked to a guy who says "I've been playing for 20 years," and then you'd start talking to him and it's like he has no idea what's going on. So like you're walking proof that amount of time being familiar with the game does not equate to actual skill, I think.
Steve: [00:07:42] No, you have to practice this game.
Scott: [00:07:44] So you've been playing for 20 years, I've been playing- Alex and I keep saying 15, but I actually sat down and thought about it- I've been playing for 17 years and so I think a lot of time I've been playing on and off with you and I remember for a good long bit you played in one of my campaigns. And so, you already admitted you don't know the rules very well but one of the reasons I asked you to be on the show is because you put the role play on, and I think you're really good at that and I think for a show, that's important. I think for us in this podcast the rules aren't really going to matter, and if you're if you're not confused, I'll make a ruling or if you are confused, I'll make a ruling and move on. But, you know, I'm here for story and I got to say, I'm pretty confident that our listeners are gonna be here for story as well. So I think you're gonna be a real asset for that.
Steve: [00:08:28] Cool.
Scott: [00:08:29] What- 20 years ago, what got you into D&D in the first place? Was this, some friend pulled you into it? Or were you into other nerd stuff that kind of slipped into here?
Steve: [00:08:38] Well, I have always been in the nerd stuff and that's just the, uh, the crowd you're hanging out with. So, I think there was this really stupid horror movie way back then called The Gate or something like that. The kids accidentally opened a gate by doing some demon stuff kind of kind of loose on D&D and a lot of my friends liked it and so I was real young and then a few years after that somebody just wanted to play D&D once. I think it was before or right after school, and so we did. Really enjoyed it, and just played off and on like that. But, nerd stuff. I mean, that's it. Comic books. Still watch cartoons. I still play with Transformers. I still play Legos. I got a Voltron. It just fits right in. I will say, that I do like- I played a lot of Magic: The Gathering, I'm probably way more into that than I am D&D, which I think you consider that a sub-nerd.
Scott: [00:09:32] Yeah. I've never played Magic and I'm not, I don't think I'm a part of it. I mean. I don't feel like the role play. It's just, it's like D&D without the best part of D&D to me. So. Hey I just googled The Gate. Not a good Rotten Tomatoes score it's got a 56% but it came out in 1987. So.
Steve: [00:09:50] Yeah.
Scott: [00:09:52] You might be a little off on my 20 year experience. You know.
Steve: [00:09:55] Maybe, maybe 30 years.
Scott: [00:09:57] That was 31 years ago.
Steve: [00:10:01] Oh man.
Scott: [00:10:01] In case you're too old-
Steve: [00:10:01] What have I done with my life?
Scott: [00:10:02] In case you're too old to do math anymore.
Steve: [00:10:05] Man. Me & Amos, wandering through it together.
Scott: [00:10:08] Apparently. So what else do you do outside game? I mean, you shared that you like to play with- play with your Transformers and Legos and Magic. But, what other hobbies is Stephen into?
Steve: [00:10:19] Well, I mean, I'm kind of workaholic. So, honestly most of my time, I spend doing my job, but I like to- I've always wanted to- Boy this is gonna sound real familiar. You could almost say I've always wanted to be a captain of a ship. I've always wanted to write...I've started a couple things. You know, when I really work on it, it can be OK. But other than this and working and playing with my toys, playing a little bit of Xbox here and there, I- I basically read and write, play outside with my dog. And that's pretty much it. A lot of people, I guess, I spent a lot of time going on vacation, so you can almost- you could consider that a hobby. I. I do like to go to a lot of places where there's water and just try to get out and see as much as I can.
Scott: [00:11:10] Okay well thanks for sharing with us today, Steve. I appreciate the sneak peek at Amos and you taking the time to set up this interview. Before we log out. Do you have any social media that you would like to share with our listeners? Or are you going to go- So Alex and Jake both passed on it, so it's up to you if you want to share.
Steve: [00:11:29] I mean the only one- I am on Twitter, what am I at FirebirdSC. You can see I'm- I'm really really into it. But I use it mostly to interact with this group and just try to talk about Shocking Gasp D&D!
Scott: [00:11:45] Sweet! Well that's a wrap for this week folks. Please check out the other prelude episodes. Like I said there are four other ones in addition to this. And if you like what you hear, please feel free to leave a review for us wherever you found your download. iTunes is always a really good one. And if you want to be privy to more content, check out the podcast on Twitter @ShockingGaspDnD. And you can also follow me on Twitter @HecklerusPrime. Thank you for the listen and have a great day.
Scott: [00:12:33] Does "thank you for the listen" make sense?
Steve: [00:12:36] Sure.
Scott: [00:12:37] All right.
Steve: [00:12:37] If nothing- If nothing else it's cute?
Scott: [00:12:40] I guess.
Shocking Gasp is a serialized actual play D&D 5e podcast. When an enigmatic being falls from the sky, four strangers investigate and find themselves on the run from a superhuman force. Now they must fight for their survival while attempting to unravel the mystery of who the being was and why they’re being hunted. New episodes released every other week on Tuesday at 6am EST. First time listeners advised to start at Episode 1 - Livin’ On a Prayer