Matt Chat 85: Bard's Tale & Dragon Wars with Becky Burger

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Becky's back this week to talk about Michael Cranford and The Bard's Tale, or, more correctly, Tales of the Unknown: Volume I (yeah, glad they didn't stick with that title). She also talks about Dragon Wars, one of the most unfairly obscure CRPGs in history. Note: Although I say this is the final segment, I was incorrect--I had misplaced 26 minutes of additional footage! Download the audio here (also available on iTunes).

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Keith Burgun
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Great interview

Great interview, Matt. I especially like how you're kinda startin' shit with these oldschool game devs, heheh. Really good stuff, keep it up.

Nathaniel Tolbert
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Joined: 11/06/2010
Excellent Show as always

That was as is par for your shows, excellent. I very much enjoy these shows. I did not know that Miss Heineman was transgendered and that wouldn't change my opinion of her skills. She helped or singlehandedly wrote the code for some of the greatest classics of all times. What surprises me is that I have never heard of this Dragon Wars. Now I'm going to have to find a copy and try it on my Dos machine.

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Matt Barton
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Thanks, Keith and Nathan. I

Thanks, Keith and Nathan. I appreciate the comments!

Becky is definitely one of those unsung heroes of the gaming industry. Considering that she's certainly not the only famous transgendered person doing great games, I have to wonder if there is any connection at all to transgenderism and coding prowess.

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clok1966
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creativity
Matt Barton wrote:

Considering that she's certainly not the only famous transgendered person doing great games, I have to wonder if there is any connection at all to transgenderism and coding prowess.

You almost hate to bring that part of it up, I'm sure she has dealt with it long enough it should just be something forgotten. I had read about it years ago, but didnt put 2 and 2 togther untill I did some googling (after the first interview). You do have to wonder, speculate, or whatever.. I'm for sure noteven remotly qualified in any way to talk about it, but alot of gay people are quite talented also (maybe should not group the two, and no offence is meant. Product of my white bread end of the eath upbringing).... But to be honest I dont think it has anything to do with it.. millions of talanted people, a few will be gay, transgender, etc.. They just stick out more to us people who where, how do you put it so its not offensive? Poeple who where shletered, I grew up in a place where an african american was not to be found, TV was it.... How far we come. I know I say alot of offensive things.. but in my mind they are not offensive, just words.... But I can sure see how they can bother other people (which I guess should be reason enouhg to not use those words). I always felt a word had no power unless i gave it power.

But.. all that.. She is simply a person i wish I could get to know better. I know i woulkd bore her, as I have no where near the knowledge she has, but to talk games, I think I could talk hours/days with her if i had the chance. Thats the sad part of the interviews you do.. some (this one) I just wish there was more and more and more.. And I think that in itself says volumes about Matt and becky.

Loved every minute of this set.

Amasius (not verified)
Great stuff but..

Hey Matt,

when I read the transcript of this interview at Gamasutra I had to watch the whole thing. It was a bit difficult to find all parts of the interiew though because the tags of the vids aren't very coherent. The fourth part for example has the tag "burger", the first two "burger becky" and the final part hasn't her name in it at all, it doesn't make much sense to me.

But anyway, fascinating stuff. Keep up the great work!

Greg Johnson
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Joined: 12/01/2010
Great Interview

This Burger series was fantastic. I hope you decide to continue your Matt Chats in one form or another. It's always one of the highlights of my week.

As far as "transgenderism and coding prowess" is concerned:
I think that constantly feeling you're the wrong sex would make you withdraw from others. During Burger's time, many of the socially awkward/inept were drawn to computers as their escape. If you consider the stereotypical "nerd", you'll usually find that he/she has a mental or physical reason that keeps him/her withdrawn from socializing. In the eighties and early nineties the limited graphics and sound capabilities made it possible to write complete programs by yourself. Today, however, I think people have replaced programming as an escape with anonymous online activities such as MMOs.

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