Podcasts about any special interest offer listeners a way to connect more deeply with a community, and that’s especially true for podcasts about video games. Video game podcasts typically take the form of discussions hosted by two or more gaming industry personalities or experts. They often cover gaming news, including updates about new releases, and they may also offer in-depth reviews of new games, well-informed analysis of trends, deep dives into niche topics, and interviews with industry veterans.
There’s never been a better time to start a gaming podcast, and it seems like that’s what everybody’s been doing. Podcast listenership has exploded, and gaming is bigger than ever: the stay-at-home era of the pandemic brought legions of new gamers into the market and increased the amount of time existing gamers engaged with video games by nearly 40%. Gaming influencers with well-established Twitch and YouTube audiences like Brian “FaZe Rug” Awadis and Ludwig Ahgren — both close personal friends of mine — just kidding, my stepson told me about them — have recently started podcasts to expand their fanbases, explore new types of content, and create new opportunities for sponsorships and partnerships.
Whether you’re thinking of starting your own gaming podcast to augment your burgeoning streaming career or you’re just looking to deepen your connection with the gaming community, here are some of the top video game podcasts out there today.
The 9 Best Video Game Podcasts
1. Giant Bombcast
Imagine sitting next to a table of gregarious gaming enthusiasts and getting to listen in as they talk about anything and everything related to video games. That’s what you can expect from Giant Bombcast. The podcast arm of the Giant Bomb gaming website and wiki has been running since 2008. It’s a roundtable-style podcast with regular hosts and recurring guests that offers video games news and reviews from industry experts.
2. Game Scoop!
IGN is one of the biggest games media outlets, and it produces several podcasts. Its primary pod is Game Scoop!, a weekly podcast about the video game industry at large. The podcast is an essentially a one stop shop for all the biggest industry news covering all types of games and platforms, from PlayStation to Xbox, Nintendo, PC, mobile, and more. Game Scoop’s hosts also contribute reviews as well as some fun segments, like a videogame “20 questions.” With funny and informative episodes that are about an hour long, it’s a good starter podcast for video game enthusiasts that also offers plenty for seasoned veterans.
The GamesIndustry.Biz podcast offers a focused look at changes in the global economic, labor, and sometimes socio-political trends that affect gaming. It’s a podcast for industry insiders by industry insiders, but the hosts do an excellent job of presenting these complex topics in an instructive and accessible way. It offers fascinating insights into the sometimes frustrating path of development that games go through and it’s a good listen for anyone who’s interested in the behind-the-scenes logistics of the industry.
4. What’s Good Games
What’s Good Games is a news, reviews, and interviews podcast hosted by industry vets Andrea Rene, Brittney Brombacher, and Kristine Steimer. The hosts are funny and relatable with deep knowledge that comes from years of combined experience working in different sectors of the industry. They mix updates about new releases with discussions about classic games. Most importantly, in a community that can struggle with inclusivity, they don’t shy away from sharing their experiences as women and parents who love to game.
5. Spawn on Me
Spawn on Me tackles the social issues faced by the gaming community through news, reviews, and in-depth interviews. Hosted by Kahlief Adams, the podcast provides perspective and commentary and spotlights underrepresented groups in the industry, giving gamers, developers, and journalists of color a platform to showcase their work.
6. Get Played
Rather than cover current events, Get Played (formerly known as How Did This Get Played?) is a comedy podcast about some of the worst and weirdest games ever produced. Created by Earwolf, it’s a spin-off of the film-focused How Did This Get Made? Hosted by comedians Heather Anne Campbell and Nick Wiger, it’s a positive and often laugh-out-loud funny look at some of the more bizarre titles to ever be released. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to test their obscure gaming knowledge, and it’s great for binging: there’s a large backlog of over 140 episodes.
7. Sacred Symbols
While other shows on this list take a platform-agnostic approach, Sacred Symbols is specifically a PlayStation podcast. Despite the niche, hosts Colin Moriarty and Chris “Ray Gun” Maldonado have more than enough to talk about, what with all the PlayStation platforms — PS4, PS5, PSVR, PS Vita — the many games, and the franchises that have grown around those games. In fact, most episodes clock in at around two hours. Moriarty and Maldonado know their stuff and don’t pander, while keeping things engaging and funny. They also take questions and comments from the listeners. Sacred Symbols is an excellent example of how to do a podcast within a niche topic and make it broadly appealing.
Retronauts carves out its space in the gaming podcast scene by exploring the history of video games and the development of the industry. Hosts Bob Mackey and Jeremy Parish offer listeners a better understanding of how old games, both successful and unsuccessful, have shaped the games that we play today. The weekly podcast typically focuses on a single topic and evokes plenty of nostalgia along the way.
9. Axe of the Blood God
Long-time gaming journalists Kat Bailey and Nadia Oxford host this podcast centered on role-playing games (known as RPGs in the gaming community). Like a few other gaming podcasts, Axe of the Blood God narrowly focuses on a specific aspect of gaming, namely Japanese RPGs, PC RPGs, and retro games. It’s an especially good podcast for anyone who might be interested in getting into RPGs but feels daunted by the admittedly overwhelming genre. Bailey and Oxford cover the gamut while blending expertise and entertainment. In addition to regular episodes, they occasionally compile deep dives, like a whole series that assesses each of the games on their list of the Top 25 RPGs of All Time.
What makes gaming podcasts so entertaining
Good video game podcasts help listeners stay up to date with the latest games and trends. They can help gamers hone their craft by offering insight and tips for popular franchises and can even introduce gamers to their new favorite games. But a great podcast stands out from the crowd by introducing an area of expertise or a fresh take and embracing it wholeheartedly. Gaming is a community-oriented world and video game podcasts are a great way to find and build that community — for listeners and creators alike.
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