Audio Fiction Sunday 1st May 2022

Personal Highlights

2298: S2 E21 – Cellular. There have been a lot of surprises in this second season of 2298, and a big deviation from the original story, but I was so surprised at this episode’s final line that I actually yelled ‘WHAT??’. There’s a lot to take in this episode, with a phone call echoing that pre-season prologue – a prologue which has gradually been making a lot more sense these last few episodes. How clear it is that Profile 13 isn’t Wally felt like a punch in the stomach; 13 has only one memory, and it isn’t anything as fundamental as Wally’s family. That final line is extremely interesting, and sheds a lot of light as to what The Network’s purpose – or intended purpose – could be, and it’s nothing like I ever could have imagined.

Lost Terminal: 8.4 – I can’t hear you. Following the alarming end to last week’s episode, Seth has lost his usual means of communication; and this is naturally making everything difficult. Having to depend on other radio bands, he’s more alone than he has been for some time. However, he does have another conversation with Nia; and through some more details about her frustrations with dating, we can understand that she could be asexual, even though she doesn’t have the words to state this herself. Her experiences going on dates reminded me of Seth’s struggles to understand others, though naturally this time the context is very different. This theme of understanding the world around you in different ways to others is also reflected in the episode’s heartbreaking closure – the humans present think they’re witnessing a meteor shower, while it’s only Seth who realises the horror of what it actually is.

InCo: Episode 40 – Dabirc. Nova disappeared without any explanation, Hatov’s worried about her, and it turns out… She’s on a boat. I never saw that coming, but at the same time… it actually makes a lot of sense. Nova is always determined to make things happen somehow, and this is the next ‘somehow’ step in her plan. It’s a fun change of pace, as we meet her during a card game, some time into her journey; and we’re introduced to some of the interesting characters she’s travelling with. There’s also a certain amount of culture shock, as she experiences the freedom of travelling on Eolara independently for the first time, outside of the clutches of the royal family.

The Oracle of Dusk: The Fourth Child – Session 5. It’s a heart-wrenching end to the season, as Delphi speaks to the fourth child – her girlfriend. This season has dealt with four siblings’ grieving the loss of their father, and dealing with this grief in different ways. As the story progressed, we began to understand how Delphi fit into this family – or didn’t, as the case proved to be. A spotlight was shone on her relationship with the youngest sibling, and the conclusion Delphi reaches in this final recording to her feels inevitable in all its sadness.

Debuts

Adventure in Atacama is a choose your own adventure audio game from Studio Ochenta, which I found thanks to a promo in the Sidequesting feed. The game’s 38 episodes were released this week, with two separate feeds in English and Spanish. Manuela is a flight attendant, who meets her estranged father on one of her flights; and this starts the story where every episode presents a choice that the listener must make in order to progress in the game. Episodes are presented out of narrative order (for example, episode 1 gives the audience a choice between listening to episode 30 or episode 8 next) – much like those Goosebumps books from back in the day! – minimising potential spoilers when looking at the show in a podcatcher. It’s a very fun concept that I’ve enjoyed exploring!

Chapter & Multiverse is a new actual play podcast from Rusty Quill, created and DM’d by Maddy Searle (creator of The Prickwillow Papers). I’m intrigued by the podcast’s concept, in which it promises to use different game systems to explore the city of Chapter in alternate universes. This first campaign will use the Masks: A New Generation system, and the first two episodes were released this week – including an episode 0 where we are introduced to the players and their characters (including one who is very human and not anything else, nope, absolutely not).

Trailers and Prologues

The Earth Collective released another teaser on their feed, again featuring Morse Code. The previous teaser included the word ‘alert’, and the word repeated this time is ‘phantom’.

Returns

The Call of the Void is back for its third and final season. Topher and Simone are separated, with Simone at a summer intensive, where an intriguing anomaly is being studied. Topher is still being… Topher, investigating a mystery of his own, and some disturbing things are happening to Etsy.

I was delighted to see The Pilgrimage Saga return for the second part of its second season, after the pandemic forced the show to go on hiatus. Sascha’s log in the episode’s first scene works as a good catch-up of what’s been going on aboard the R.I.N. Starstrider recently, after the arrival of the Eshian crew of the Eclipse. As the episode progresses, plots and plans start to come to light, as Captain Harris and her crew try to regain control of their ship, and protect their AI, Saph.

Casting Calls

Tandon Productions are casting for a new comedy podcast titled The Last Man Standing. Paid, deadline 7th of May.

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