Squideye and The Bitter Guy (podcasts)
The Gamut of Geekery in a Canadian Vein

Updates, crowdfunding, freemium games, and fear.

The State of our Lives

Ilan and Justin update you -- the listener -- on the latest and greatest in what we’ve been up to. FanExpo! Live theatre! Mawwiage!

How to Fund your Passion

What hath Crowdfunding wrought? Kickstarted games, comics, movies and games, like Catthulhu, Hillfolk, and Code Monkey Saved World. Expectations, reality, and YOU!

Debt of a Thousand Clicks

Freemium, micropayment-driven gaming models. What’s the difference between so-called “pay-to-win” and the old days of buying physical boosters, expansions and additional minis?

Muppets vs. Cancer

Make Justin face his fear. Fund his dreaded Farscape binge and help blast cancer out of the sky.

Direct download: SATBG-2014-09-15-episode-28.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:30am EDT

We have our Rush t-shirts and a new year has started. It's time to reconnect with you, our treasured listeners, and just barely fail to talk in-depth about the amazing comic "Saga". We will, however, cover some games, a visit from a dear friend, and a movie or two.

1. (1:00) Star Wars Edge of Empire RPG

- It's Firefly and Futurama, with Funny Dice (dice app)

- Ilan's specious comparisons to FATE and Cortex

- Compared to Star Wars Saga Edition?

- Fantasy Flight will be releasing the game in a manner similar to their 40k system

- Notes on the "Edge of the Empire" setting

2. (11:20) Jerome Comeau, King of Tokyo

- Welcome to Toronto, Jerome Comeau!

- Sauced: since we last podcasted, they began and ended, and put out as many episodes as we ever did. Ever!

- Poutineries in Toronto: Smoke's and Poutini's. Ilan's Daiya Cheesemongering.

- How King of Tokyo works - rules, and dice.

3. (17:00) Other two-player games

- Spot It

- Kahuna ("A Full Web")

- Burger Joint

4. (20:00) Sentinels of the Multiverse

- That's what those crackling noises were, Ilan unpacking it.

- All about Sentinels of the Multiverse, how it works.

- That it's the Kickstartered second edition.

- As a single-player game.

5. (23:50) HALO 4

- Co-op gameplay, playing online.

- Thinking back on ODST, Reach.

6. (26:00) Brief return to Sentinels of the Multiverse

- Character design

- Comparison to Fantasy Flight's "Death Angel"

7. (27:25) Movies: Argo, Kirby

- Argo. "Made in Canada", but "you have to change history". Alan Arkin and John Goodman.

- Jack Kirby's storyboards. And Devil Dinosaur.

- "Cashing in on the Sci-fi craze."

- Did it succeed in nuance and balance? Are any historical movies "true"?

8. (35:00) Skyfall, and Ken and Robin

- Skyfall. What's the authoritative James Bond?

- Plug for "Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff"

- Did Skyfall have the things you need to have a James Bond movie?

- Character of "Eve" - a female character in a James Bond movie

9. (39:00) Quick Saga Chat, with a promise of more

- We'll do Saga next episode in depth.

- Worth a reread and good for sharing, at Image Starter Pricing ($10)

- Pricing on trades!

- Incal and Lost riding a dinosaur through rocket-ship forest; Esperanto-speaking Jedi druids versus winged laser-imperialists, with robot mercenaries and lying cats. All the things are in the book.

- If you don't like it "I will not actually punch you."

- We got a new microphone (Blue Yeti)

- Canadian law on Wendigos

10. (44:00) Signoff, and things to look forward in the future:

- AT SOME POINT FanExpo "lost episode", perhaps edit back together at some point.




- Disney purchase of Lucasfilm in more depth

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2013-01-01.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00am EDT

With Dark Knight about to open (at the time) we contemplate the comic book movie explosion. So many explosions. Then we talk about Ready Player One, and Lords of Waterdeep. And other stuff. An explosion of other stuff! Thankfully, nobody was hurt in the explosions.

1. Mighty Marvel Movies Precap and Recap

2. The Avengers Recap

  • it took 2 days for people to get Justin's 2am shawarma joke
  • How would you Plan an Avengers Marathon?!

3. New Marvel Movie Announcements

  • Iron Man 3: Iron Manner (Ben Kingsley the Mandarin)
  • Captain America Winter Soldier (Sharon Carter can allow a positive Bechdel)
  • Thor: The Dark World (We dunno?)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (LOL) (Moondragon and Quasar - you can never have too many lesbians in superhero movies; but they only show Gamora)
  • Ant Man. Yes, we said Ant-Man.
  • WHY NOT NEXTWAVE?! It has three female superheroes, and two idiots. Well they're all idiots. A complete and total (UNPRINTABLE) is what everyone called Aaron Stack.

4. Boards of Waterdeep!

  • Lords of Waterdeep, which Justin sez is so good.

5. The Book Zone!

  • Ernest Cline's READY PLAYER ONE, Olaf Stapledon's Last and First Men, Brandon Sanderson's Infinity Blade book (which is the most profitable game, percentagewise, ever made by EPIC), and sure why not talk about The Hunger Games
  • Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey's "Comic Book History of Comics"
  • Ed Brubaker's Criminal: Last of the Innocent; Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson's The Boys, and Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely's Flex Mentallo

We talk about The Kirby Krackle's Super Powered Love and Adam Warrock in our long-anticipated episode on NERD ROCK!

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2012-08-25.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:03am EDT

SYNOPSIS: 1812-The Invasion of Canada, John Carter of Mars, S4UC3D, and "Spring Preview".

We got our rewrites in from J. Michael Straczynski and George R.R. Martin, and Adi Granov finished the art, so we're ready to go!

And in true news, Ilan and Justin have just spent the last few months demonstrating that "work-life balance" is something that happens to other people. In March, we recorded a shockingly timely segment about a new light wargame, 1812 - the Invasion of Canada, and oh gee right about now are the War of 1812 celebrations/commemorations. Good job, guys!

About 7 minutes in, we also have... oh dear. A timely review of John Carter of Mars, which more or less came and went and - though commercially successful - didn't make much of a cultural impact. But it was better than Attack of the Clones.

Around twelve minutes in, we talk about how we hadn't had a chance to play Mass Effect 3. Or other video games. Update: Ilan had a chance to play Mass Effect 3. But Justin still hasn't.

It's thirteen minutes when we welcome the (now 19-episode-old!) S4UC3D podcast, starring SATBG superfriend Jerome Comeau, and their mockery of us is well-earned. Haw haw, you guys.

Then it's fourteen minutes, and we talk comics. Ilan talks about Remender, and Justin talks about Swamp Thing, and Alan Moore, and then Ilan gets all high and mighty about how The Ultimates have higher stakes than "mainstream Marvel" ever can. 


Around twenty-one minutes in, we pontificate about the comic-book-buyer's dilemma. Wait for reviews? Preorder, rain-or-shine?

Twenty-four minutes in we *ANTICIPATE* the new (spring!) TV season, including the new (third!) season of Community. Yep. And wave our hands about Fringe, and Breaking Bad, and stuff.

Twenty-eight minutes: Wrestling, movies, G.I. Joe. And then we worry about whether the Avengers was gonna be good and stuff. And we cap it off by talking about Zahn and Thrawn.

You can figure this out. Just careful that nobody gets hurt!

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2012-07-10.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:32pm EDT

We're just a little wintry! We're still good! We're still good. Sad Trombone.

We're back after a frenzied summer and a busy school semester.

News, movies and trailers:

New TV!

  • Community!
    • Seneca's group of self-loathing misfits.
  • Modern Urban Fairytales!
    • Grimm and Once Upon a Time - the de Lint collector?
    • Why don't they ever get more inclusive about fairytales?

The Summer!

  • Justin and FanExpo Canada!
    • Admission policy for gaming. But it's worth it - Aaron Douglas, stand-up guy.
    • Feedback on FanExpo gaming?


  • Etan Muskat in Sorry, Rabbi!
    • Marc Slutsky, Jessica Paré, Jacob Tierney
    • Other Canadian shorts: Paris Quintet
  • The Day - cannibal hilbillies instead of zombies
    • Good guest stars: Shawn Ashmore, Shannyn Sossamon, Dominic Monaghan
  • Letter to Momo
    • My Neighbour Totoro, Summer Days with Coo
  • Monster in Paris
  • Extra Terrestrial

Non-TIFF movies over the Summer!

  • Attack the Block!
    • Utter genius: Bromwell High vs. Predator!
  • Another Earth
  • Drive
  • In Time

Digression: Biff, Bam, Pop! The Illuminatus Trilogy!

Next time: on Tim Rice and Michael Bay!

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-12-10.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:17pm EDT

Justin interviews author and RPG designer Matt Forbeck about his latest work. See below for links mentioned during the podcast.

Matt Forbeck's web site


The Brave New World  Kickstarter




Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-11-22.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:10am EDT

Episode 22: The Library and the Heap

- In which Ilan and Justin develop a pair of regular segments for the show.

Role Playing Games Continued!

  • Ashen Stars hit its other preorder!
  • Other Kickstarter preorders, incliding Do, Pilgrims of the Flying Temple.
  • Vampire 20th Anniversary!
    • Like $100
    • Released at Grand Masquerade
  • Laundry RPG
    • Stross books
    • The Basic Roleplaying system

The Library!

  • Top Secret - The Corporation - 1986
  • Conspiracy X - late '90s
    • three classic aliens - saurians, venusians, greys
    • A game with "default answers"
    • Parapsychology resolution system
    • Not unisystem - but look for the new ConX, Buffy, Angel

The Heap!

  • Chaos in the Old World: Shadow of the horned rat
  • Twilight Imperium: Shards of the Throne
    • "Subgoals" speed up gameplay
  • Cosmic Encounter - Cosmic Conflict
  • Alien Frontiers
  • Heroscape: Marvel Suporheroes
    • Planet Hulk reenactment
  • Here I Stand
    • "A 7 player Twilight Struggle"
    • In practice, "Riskopoly as applied to Diplomacy"


  • Dan Slott Spider Man
    • vs. Sinister Six
  • Jonathan Hickman's continuing output
    • Hickman Fantastic Four - now FF
    • incomplte books - Pax Romana and Annihilation
    • SHIELD
  • Jason Aaron
    • Astonishing Spider Man and Wolverine
    • all stupid hugely fun
    • Wolverine!!!! Scalped
  • Pak/Van Lente
    • Herc and Alpha Flight
    • The Raft, Basilisk, Griffin and Man-Bull
    • Eaglesham and Fascist Governments
  • Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (Zayne)
    • Zayne, schlemazel jedi
  • Flashpoint - variant DC universe
    • BATMAN strapping flash to electric chair; would have been better in the Silver age

Next time: Movies! Geek Rock videos!

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-07-31.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:54pm EDT

Episode 21: On the Galactic Stage

 - in which Ilan has a cold and we talk about live theatre and videogames.

Give us feedback about our Jim Interview - last episode!

Ilan and culture

  • My Fair Lady, community theatre experience
  • Countermeasure A Cappella concert "we sold out"
  • Album cover suggestion: "Twisted"

Justin: Ghost Stories

  • Not played with Wraith: the Oblivion mechanics
  • Managing our expectations

Soulpepper Theatre!

  • Billy Bishop goes to war (Has come and gone, sadly)
  • Midsummer Night's Dream
  • Good episodes of Fame
  • Canned Heat: Center Stage or Napoleon Dynamite?

Video Games!

  • L.A. Noire and the anatomy of a slightly worse deal
  • iPad!
    • Infinity Blade - on the iPad! Recalls "Die By the Sword".
    • Reading books on the iPad! Discworld books: Mort, Small Gods
    • Ascendancy! And how can we get Alpha Centauri?
  • Mass Effect!
    • BioWare is a very open-minded company.
    • I'm Commander Shepherd, and this is my favourite podcast on the Internet.

Ashen Stars RPG (Stellar Nursery pre-release!)

  • GUMSHOE system - detective story engine.

Pixel knocks down so much stuff that we end the episode!

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-07-20.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:21am EDT

Justin talks with his gaming pal Jim "Zub" Zubkavich, mastermind of UDON studios and author of the new fantasy action comedy comic Skullkickers.  "Like Army of Darkness with two Ashes." How is it made? What to expect? Why is the first trade so cheap? Answers within!

A life lesson, kids: beat the drum as much as possible. We are happy to be part of the shilling for this admittedly hugely fun book that we both really like.

And no-one was hurt.

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-04-30.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:09pm EDT

Wow, it's been a long time since our last episode.  Today we focus on comics, particularly the biggest comic event of the last little while: Jonathan Hickman's run on the Fantastic Four!

We touch on other topics related to media as well.

No superheroes were harmed in the podcasting of this episode.

Direct download: squideye-bitterguy-2011-03-11.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:14am EDT