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The Best Podcasts to Listen to Whilst Playing Video Games

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Podcasts, like any entertainment medium, come in many different forms and genres. With the growth of this medium comes with it a branch of categories that cover almost anything you can think of.

There are traditional story-telling podcasts including professional actors and narrators. Factual podcasts about random interesting subjects can also be found; notwithstanding serial killers and strange mysteries which have occurred in recent history. Conversational podcasts, as well as political, are as complicated as they are substantial. Podcasts about almost anything you can think of will likely be available to listen to at your next opportunity.

But I’m not here to tell you about the variety of podcasts available. I’m here to tell you which podcasts you might like listening to when you’re finishing those last few side quests left over after you’re done with a game’s main story/campaign.

podcast

When you’re playing through fairly forgettable but enjoyable side missions as I am currently in Nier: Automata, and you need just that little extra dose of entertainment as the areas you’re exploring and the music playing has become repetitive after the tens of hours you’ve already had with the game, podcasts are here for you.

Want some background conversation for relaxation as you try to clean up those seemingly impossible time trials in Crash Team Racing: Nitro-Fueled? Podcasts are here for you. Perhaps you’re playing through a part of a game which you’ve done already and want to whizz through, or maybe you’re playing through a water level? Podcasts are here for you.

So, what podcasts should you listen to whilst you play video games? Well, it depends. It depends on what sort of podcasts you listen to at the moment. It depends on whether you listen to podcasts at all. It depends on the things you find interesting. So, like the informative writer I am, I will answer all of these questions and more just for you.

If you have a plethora of podcasts which you already listen to, then you will likely use any dull gameplay periods to try to catch up on your podcast back-catalogue. Similar to how I’m playing through most of Nier: Automata – with a podcast on.

Some suggestions on this: listen to podcasts which are similar to the mood of the game you’re playing. I’m not expecting the cast to enhance my gaming experience in terms of actually making the game better (if anything it only makes the ‘boring’ parts more bearable) or vice versa, but listening to deep conversations about AI’s fits the themes of Nier: Automata. In other words, it might not bring you out of your experience, unlike if you were listening to a comedy podcast like Chris D’elia’s ‘Congratulations’.

kinda funny games

If you don’t currently listen to podcasts, then I would take this opportunity to direct you in a few places which you can branch off from if you so choose to.

First, you want to think about the genre/topic you want to explore. If you want to explore gaming culture and news, then you’ll likely want to check out the following:

Kinda Funny Games Daily Kinda Funny Games break-down the latest news in gaming every weekday. Covering all the platforms including Xbox, this podcast is a must-listen if you want to know all the latest happenings of the game industry.

Podcast Unlocked – The biggest weekly Xbox show hosted by IGN, listening to Unlocked every week means that you’ll not only know of all news tied to Game Pass, Xbox Live, the first-party line-up of studios and more, but you’ll also get some of the most informed opinions ideas and thoughts on topical happenings every weekday. Say no more.

The Game Informer Show Game Informer is similar to IGN in the sense that they are another games media coverage site. But more importantly, their weekly show includes opinions on the latest game releases. Of which I find their insight particularly refreshing, honest and diverse. A definite recommend from me.

ign podcast

In terms of podcasts about and by game developers, the following should provide some insight into that side of the industry:

NoClip This is Danny O’Dwyer’s company producing documentaries about the making of video games. Alongside his main video documentaries include podcasts with players and makers of video games. If you don’t support NoClip’s work, you should at the very least check it out. It’s some of the best developer content available for your listening pleasure.

The AIAS Game Maker’s Notebook A podcast with game developers interviewing game developers on the latest gaming culture triumphs and technical achievements. Ted Price (CEO of Insomniac Games) usually handles the interviews, with a few wonderful step-ins now and then. If you want to hear how the Assassin’s Creed: Origins team designed the huge game that is Origins, or perhaps hear Amy Hennig’s biggest excitements moving forward in the gaming industry, then look no further ladies and gentlemen.

IGN Unfiltered Ryan McCaffrey from IGN (also the host of Podcast Unlocked) hosts a monthly interview show with one of the best and brightest minds in the video game industry. Almost always a developer. This is THE highlight reel of incredible game developers being asked about their best and worse work, what they look back fondly on, what they’re excited about in the future, and all the funny stories in-between.

podcast mic

If you want to check out conversational podcasts about a broad range of topics I would recommend The Joe Rogan Experience to open the can of worms, so to speak. Joe Rogan hosts the biggest variety of guests imaginable. From rockstars to scientists, to comedians to professional athletes, you will find honest and deep conversations about anything and everything. A whole new world to explore and discuss.

There are plenty of other podcasts available to you depending on what you’re into. Podcasts such as Dan Carlin’s Hardcore History are as prominent as My Dad Wrote A Porno. Trying out podcasts can lead to discovering similar podcasts which you may enjoy, so have an open mind, and be cautious of subscribing to a lot of podcasts since they’re most likely weekly. Listening to one once or week, or sometimes even more regularly, can be a big commitment if you’re a busy person.

But if you have plenty of games to get through, then journey away. And let me know of any podcasts which you enjoy while playing. And don’t forget to check in on my other podcast styled piece – the best games you should play whilst you are listening to the latest podcast.


Nick Burton
Nick Burton
Believer in the power of video games and the conversations surrounding them. Writer, creator, and thinker above all else.
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