As a gamer one of the things I enjoy is listening to game related podcasts. I listen to five or six different shows and they are a great way to be entertained and pick up some useful gaming information at the same time. Having produced a podcast myself, I hold great respect for these hosts, knowing the work that is involved and that they do it simply for the joy of podcasting. You guys do a great job!
And that is why I was a little surprised and disappointed at the apparent oversight made by all my favorite podcasts.
One month ago, on September 3, Brian Wood and his pregnant wife Erin were driving in their car when an SUV crossed the center line and threatened to collide with them. According to Erin, Brian swerved so that the SUV hit the driver’s side of the car, protecting Erin and their unborn child. In the process, Brian was killed.
Brian was a lead designer at Runic Entertainment, a video game development company. His current project was Company of Heroes Online, a multi-player World War II action-strategy game. Support swelled among the gaming community for Brain, with post after post offering condolences to Erin and contributions being made to a trust fund set up to help support the survivors. Seeing all this online, I was sure that there would be a mention or two on a least a few of my regular podcasts.
Well, by now all except one have recorded new shows, some two new shows, and not a word of Brian Wood’s tragedy. I am a bit surprised. I wasn’t expecting an entire memorial show or anything like that. But I did think that a quick mention was in order. When a top designer leaves his long-time company, or a developer lays off several programmers, not only does it get mentioned, but sometimes the mood surrounding the discussion is somber. I had hoped for the same level of respect for a member of their community who has left this earth.
As I mentioned before, I have a lot of respect for these podcasters, so I hope I don’t come across as accusatory or overly critical. Each show might have a perfectly legitimate reason why they didn’t mention this story, and that is their prerogative. I’m not about to go on a mad rage posting spree saying that these hosts are inconsiderate and should be boycotted. Of course not. I will continue to listen and enjoy what they have to say. In fact, I can’t say that my opinion of them has altered, at all. My only point is this:
Gaming podcasters, you had an opportunity to honor someone who was a part of your community and whose career was invested in creating the games you love to talk about, and you missed it.
If you wish to donate to the Brian Wood Memorial Trust Fund, you can find information at this website.