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Podcast / Fandible

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Fandible is an Actual Play roleplaying podcast.

The franchise has also branched out into other media formats than audio, such as a JRPG-style computer game called Horatio's Story, about a man who's forced to fight an infestation in his own basement, and a YouTube channel called the Fanditube, currently featuring a video with an orky bedtime story: Goodnight Barsher.

You can find the episodes here, or download them from iTunes.

(This podcast should not be confused with the entry of the same name, found in the chapter on lexicraftology in the book "How to Raise Your I.Q. by Eating Gifted Children", by Lewis B. Frumkes.)

This Series Provides Examples Of:

David: You just did, in under 45 minutes, what I have endured for the last two years.
Billy: My god, it's awful! Why are you still playing?
Angela: Why are you here?!
David: I don't know! It's like Stockholm Syndrome for Warhammer 40k.
  • Bond Creatures: Slyvix, the Gyrinx who adopts Angela's character as a suitable owner in Rogue Trader.
  • Butt-Monkey: David usually ends up playing this role, mostly due to his legendary dice rolling.
    • Arianna Ackerman (Angela's character from the Atomic Robo RPG beta playtest, The Deadliest Topping). Intern and meteorology student. Her contractual obligations include:
      • Fetching coffee.
      • Making fresh coffee when the pot's empty.
      • Being used as triceratops-fungus-monster bait.
  • Byronic Hero: Lord Byron Clayton, Billy's character from Unhallowed Metropolis. (He's gotten the name right, but tends to struggle with the "hero" part.)
  • Cannibalism Superpower: Telka Prant (Angela's Kroot Mercenary character from the Rogue Trader campaign) is able to om-nom-nom her fallen enemies to recover health, and occasionaly steal their neato powers.
  • Classy Cat-Burglar: Goldshot, Angela's character in Rotted Capes. Former supervillain cat burglar, before the zombie apocalypse rendered ostrich-egg-sized jewels and antique objets d'art worthless. Now, she fights for survival and ersatz cocktail parties. Master archer and equestrienne. Her costume was designed by Vera Wang.
  • Continuity Nod: In most of Billy's NWOD specials, there are subtle callbacks to his older stories. For example, the Christmas special took place next to Founders' Falls (Which was, in an earlier story, a small town) and the Honeybranch song from camp Honeybranch is referenced in the beginning of the special. It's also not that odd to hear very similar names in-universe. Out of universe, Billy also often stumbles when making new characters, and has almost named someone Allison and Susanna, the former a prominent NPC in his first special, and the later the name of his wife's character in the Founder's Day campaign.
    • Stored Gods is FULL of this trope. Characters from previous stories show up, and the entire auction covers goods from Founder's Heights. It may as well be called Congealed Happiness 2: Not only does the Ink Monster show up again to kill people, his minion of choice is April Bwire from Pure Wax, who met her at the end after the wax monster fiasco, and they even run into Frances, one of the main three characters from Congealed Happiness. The story makes a point to mention previous stories at least once; Peggy mentions His Holy Light University by name, the story takes place in the same state camp Honeybranch was, etc.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Tiffany against the Gashadokuro, having rolled an exceptional success.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion: Though, to be fair, the Gashadokuro DID hurt David's character quite a bit.
  • Crusading Widow: Moira Clayton née Hepburn, Angela's undead-butt-kickin' undertaker from Unhallowed Metropolis.
  • Deadly Doctor: Partially invoked by Nadia Braga, the Goddess of Medicine (Angela's character in Part-Time Gods), when she uses her divine powers of totally-not-quack-medicine to attack one of her opponents - by summoning a swarm of leeches.
  • Deal with the Devil: Trevor Söze (played by David in the Dresden Files RPG Christmas Special) has made deals with so many different demonic entities, they're forced to queue up and take a number to get a chance to torment him.
  • Dem Bones: During the final boss battle at the end of the 1980s Supernatural game session, Paint The Town Dead, the team of hunters fight a Gashadokuro, a giant-sized stealthy cannibalistic skeleton from Japanese mythology.
  • A Dog Named "Dog": Genie, a genie who lives in a magic lamp (played by Angela in the Dresden Files RPG Christmas Special). She was named by her current owner, Clarence Dobbs (played by Billy).
  • Drugs Are Good: Lucas Charam, Daniel's character in the Supernatural game session, Paint The Town Dead, enjoys chain smoking doobies. His addiction is not quite so bad that he's unable to function normally, but his self-prescribed medicinal ganja lands the team in hot water occasionally - for example, when he starts hotboxing in the Haverford city morgue, with the locals cops waiting outside. He hates the Reagan era's D.A.R.E program, because he thinks the acronym stands for "Drugs Are Really Expensive".
  • Dual Boss: Moira vs. Nelland's Mourner, in Moira's favor.
  • The Eeyore: The characters from Bulldogs: Machinations of Murderbot travelled in a space ship called "The Cheating Bastard", whose A.I. was broody and borderline suicidally depressed. (Mostly due to being sentient enough to realize how awful the people it was travelling with, were.)
  • Everybody Did It: Zig-zagged; most people were connected with two murders. In Billy's story of Buried Memories, the plot revolves around four unconnected people seeing incredibly weird things in a retreat and being unable to sleep. Turns out, they aren't as unconnected as it seems. It ends up being a murder plot where two lesbian lovers had their entire lives ruined by these four people; Miranda, the NPC sister of Daniel's character did a delivery he was supposed to do but didn't while drunk. When Miranda was coming back, David's character, a drunkard actor, ran her over, and was too wasted to do anything. When she finally got help, Jesus' character, a doctor, froze up during the surgery due to PTSD, costing Miranda valuable time and causing her to die when the replacement doctor was too late. The other lesbian lover, an NPC named Cynthia, was broken by Miranda's death, and tried to find a way to help herself survive. She ended up working under Angela's character, a business woman with medical anger problems who was aspiring to become CEO, a promotion not too far off. However, Angela's character overworked Cynthia and ended up exploding and throwing a coffee mug at her, which, combined with the recent passing of Miranda, drove her over the edge and caused her to commit suicide.
  • Evil Chancellor: Jarren the Enchanter, a Planeswalker who favors blue/white spells, played by Daniel in Magic: The GatheringThe Savage Green. Referring to himself as the "Merlin of his age", he's the king's confidant, nay: vizier, on his native plane of existence. His motto is: "If the people aren't happy, we will make them happy."
  • Evil Weapon: Captain Renaldo "Awesome-Pants" Macharius, Daniel's character from Rogue Trader, wields a sentient Dark Eldar blade. They take turns attempting to corrupt and torment each other.
  • The Face: Literally the job description for Roslyn Foisie, Angela's charming dwarf pacifist in Shadowrun.
  • Fantastic Arousal: Quantus the Tech Priest, David's character from Rogue Trader, is equipped with a very... versatile set of mecha-dendrites.
  • Fantastic Drug: Applies in every sense of the term, when referring to "hizzy", an imaginary (and wonderful) drug, introduced in David's Shadowrun game. It's main effect? It affects the user's mind, making them believe that they're a violent vigilante hero, driving around town really fast in souped-up armored vehicles, fighting crime and shouting at random people. And who wouldn't want to be that? (But seriously, kids: drugs are bad.)
  • Fartillery: Leo, one of the P.H.I.S.H.E.S (Parareality Harmonic Independent Surface Hydrodynamic Entity Systems) from the "oceans" of zero-point energy. Dr. Thomas Elwood caught him and keeps him in contraption that looks suspiciously like a toy balloon. Leo likes radishes, and his primary attack is wind-based.
  • Five-Man Band: The Fandible lineup usually consists of five people, with an occasional session where one or more players are indisposed, or sessions featuring guest stars. The players all take turns GMing, in different games. The five core members of the group are (in alphabetical order):
    • Angela: The literature nerd. Married to Billy.
    • Billy: The nerd who loves doing accents. Married to Angela.
    • Daniel: The tech/computer nerd.
    • David: The Oirish nerd who aren't allowed to touch other people's dice.
    • Jesus: (No, not that guy. It's pronounced "Hay-Soos".) The nerd who loves t-shirts with hilarious pop cultural references.
    • Besides the five official Fandimembers, Fandible also features an officially unofficial sixth member: the Fanditoaster. No, it's not a person, it's a toaster. Donated by one of their fans, actually. They love it like a child. A shiny metal child that cooks lunch, and hardly ever keeps you up at night with its loud screaming.
    • Oh, and then there's Penny, who sometimes joins the games, and has made several drawings and character portraits for the group, which can be seen on the site's Tumblr. She's still outranked by the Fanditoaster, though, because the toaster's got more fans. Every time they do a popularity poll, the Fanditoaster keeps popping up.
  • Fighting Irish: Marcas O'Carrol the Irish dhampir, David's character in Unhallowed Metropolis.
  • Flat "What": From Janus of all people when Loppy outright tells him she needs to kill him during the Supernatural game.
  • Flying Car: Dr. Thomas Elwood (Daniel's character from the Atomic Robo RPG beta playtest, The Deadliest Topping) harnessed the powers of zero-point energy. He used it to build a flying golf cart.
  • Food as Bribe: Barsha D. Barsha convinced Telka the Kroot mercenary to bring a squad of her fellow man-eating space bird-people on a mission, by promising them tasty comatose Space Marine snacks for gobby-gobby time.
  • Freaky Is Cool: David tends to gravitate toward a certain type of characters, e.g. emo goth man-children who smile a lot, or heavily body-modded Satanists wearing naught but spiked leather adult diapers under their billowing trenchcoats. Examples include:
  • Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Marcas O'Carrol the Irish dhampir, from Unhallowed Metropolis.
  • Groin Attack: When they were fighting griffons in the Salish-Shidhe territories surrounding Seattle in the 5th Shadowrun episode, Laying Low and Aiming High, Daniel's character, John Kim Lee, delivered a solid stomp to one of the monsters' groins, along with a pop culture reference that tickled the GM's ditto, announcing his discovery that "Griffon's got nards!"
  • Gun Nut: John Kim Lee, orc gun adept, played by Daniel in Shadowrun. He's got big guns, small guns, books about guns, books shaped like guns, posters about guns, posters about guns shaped like books about guns, guns that shoot knives, guns that shoot bombs, guns that shoot smaller guns... Sorry, what was the question?
  • The Hedonist: Lord Byron Clayton, Billy's character from Unhallowed Metropolis, although he seems to be developing a sense of morality, recently.
  • Hilariousin Hindsight: In his first appearance on the podcast, Angela tells David that "we don't expect you to have an accent and weird vocal ticks, but it helps." Five years later and David is probably the most likely to have a character with an accent or weird vocal tick.
  • Human Resources: The players always make such interesting noises when their characters have "Corpse Crackers" for dinner, in the Rogue Trader campaign.
  • Humans Are Morons: Graven, Billy's Arsurban character from Bulldogs: Machinations of Murderbot. Ship pilot and programmer, addicted to a drug called Turbo. Even when compared to the other two crew members, Sploosh and Phalec, he's still the biggest dork on the ship.
  • Hunter of His Own Kind: Marcas O'Carrol the Irish dhampir, from Unhallowed Metropolis, is really not a fan of any kind of bloodsuckers.
  • Implacable Man: Glory Hog, the alien motorbike driving zombie rocker from Rotted Capes. In the first episode alone, he survived an explosion, chased the PCs through the sewers, survived a water tank falling on him from a ten story building, and just wouldn't stop chasing them.
  • Joisey: Tiffany Capelli (played by guest star Emily in the Supernatural game session, Paint The Town Dead), an overly tanned dark-haired vampire hunter who loves hair spray, Madonna, aerobics and jazzercise, hails from a certain region of New York.
  • Killer Teddy Bear: Phalec (presumably short for Phalexander), Daniel's cute, fluffy Ursamite character from Bulldogs: Machinations of Murderbot. Carries a ginormous chain axe that grants him bonuses to both intimidation and seduction skill checks.
  • Loving Bully: Billy dreams of having Angela's character be nice to his, and begged her to at least pretend to like him in the game. There has yet to be a game where Angela's character has shown a passing interest in Billy's character.
  • Mad Scientist: Jesus is a big fan of science, especially the kind that goes Boom!, or Zap!, or Skree-ow! Thus, plenty of his games feature NPCs with such proclivities. Several of the PCs fit this role, as well.
  • Musical Episode: Although Fandible has never had a real musical episode, many (if not most) episodes feature situations where one of the players spontaneously burst into song:
    • Barsha D. Barsha (Billy's character) was turned into a human in one of the Rogue Trader episodes, and when one of the players commented that Barsha's human voice sounded like Disney's Aladdin, Billy promptly started singing Aladdin's songs, but with lyrics appropriate to the scene.
    • The fourth Unhallowed Metropolis episode, Life's Masquerade, featured a scene where the character Penny Black (played by the guest star, Penny) was turned into a proper lady, My Fair Lady-style. This prompted everyone to burst into song, crooning: "She's a lady! Whoa, whoa, whoa!" (Although they could only sing a few bars - not because they'd forgotten the rest of the lyrics, but uh... copyright reasons. Yeah.)
    • Unhallowed Metropolis: The Strange Dead featured a scene where Lord Byron (played by Billy) displayed his usual routine for getting into an argument with his mother: after she'd berated him thoroughly, he staggered off into his room to smoke opium and bawl "Pooouuur sooome suuugaaar oooon meeeee!", loudly.
    • When the party tried to con another group of soldiers into relinquishing their helicopter in the Only War game, the players emphasized their ability to bluff and swindle people by operatically singing all their deceitful, deceitful lies.
  • Nay-Theist: Ree the Samsaran Summoner, played by Daniel in Planescape: Welcome to Sigil. Works as a tour guide in his native city, Sigil. Morally flexible atheist. Technically, he doesn't deny the existence of the gods (after all, the evidence is quite overwhelming, what with all the actual gods walking around). It's more a case of believing that the gods are super-powerful jerkwads who aren't worth believing in.
  • Nerd in Evil's Helmet: Big Louie, a mob boss in Fiasco (portrayed by Billy). Technically, he's not a nerd, he just... happens to be very knowledgeable about certain things. Actually, it's his accountant, Stanley (played by Jesus), who's the real champion at Magic: The Gathering and Settlers of Catan. When Big Louie needs to put the thumbscrews on people who owe him favors, he lets Stanley do the dirty work. Not because Stanley is intimidating, but none of the other goombahs had time. So yeah, if you upset Big Louie, prepare to be trampled. And if Big Louie accidentally mistakes "plains" for "planes", and ends up inadvertently making a joke about 9/11? Well, that just proves that Big Louie ain't no book-luvin' four-eyes, see? Ahem.
  • New Job as the Plot Demands: Stevens and Rubia, a very dependable pair of NPCs who inexplicably keep appearing, whenever the GM is stumped for a name or two.
  • Nonchalant Dodge: When Angela's character fired her heavy flamethrower at a copse of trees in Warhammer 40k: Only War - and missed - the players struggled to deduce a rational in-game explanation. The best they could come up with was: "The trees are dodgey".
  • Not the Fall That Kills You…: Grannek, dwarf shaman of the Honey Badger (played by Jesus), invented a new form of parachute when he tried to escape a skyscraper by leaping out of a window on the hundred-and-umpteenth floor. Well, maybe not a parachute, per se; it was more like an improvised cushion - made out of a Cactus Elemental he'd conjured out of some potted plants, earlier. (He might not have learned to fly, but at least his insurance premiums went up, up and away.)
  • Off with His Head!: Whipping Tom, after Moira Clayton slashes his head off.
  • Oireland: Ancestral homeland of David, and most of his characters.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: Yup.
    • Man-Eagles. (Insert obligatory eagle noise.) Sometimes, though not always, used as a racial slur.
    • Mermaids. Specifically the ones in Shadowrun, whose alluring singing is best avoided. (Although they technically aren't unique to Fandible, since they're part of the official published game setting. The game designers probably didn't expect any of the players to weaponize the mermaids' mating call, though...)
    • Pedophile kobolds. Those scumbags deserve to die, so it's perfectly okay to go on a murder spree, so long as you can convince yourself afterwards that the victims were all pedo-'bolds.
    • The end-of-session boss fight in the Atomic Robo game, The Deadliest Topping, featured a triceratops fungus monster that had been spawned by a scientifically enhanced mushroom pizza.
    • An Ink Monster that is the Billyverses answer to the Fae, a tall, lanky, memory eating ink beast that has fun toying with prey, enjoys watching carnage caused by the equally weird wax monsters, and, despite having a god complex, has a nasty allergy to iron. Oh, and it goes between acting like an adult and a small child.
    • Reflections, also from the Billyverse; copies of the real world that don't make sense and feel the best way to explain things to people is by using Star Wars analogies in deadpan, and one has such a hard time fitting in with the real world she dresses like a a Christian University, where she sticks out like a sour thumb.
    • A plant creature that, like the ink monster, feeds off humans, but does abducting drivers, putting them on Pseudo life support, and having them relive a single day over and over again. The weird part? The day it chooses to relive is incredibly stereotypically eighties, and its methods of killing people who go off its script include: Having copies of the people kill each other, having the camp counselors quarantine campers faking sickness by blowing them up with propane, dumping oysters in peoples heads, and having people run at bears playing music at the highest volume.
  • Pet Monstrosity: Leo, one of the P.H.I.S.H.E.S (Parareality Harmonic Independent Surface Hydrodynamic Entity Systems) from the "oceans" of zero-point energy. Dr. Thomas Elwood caught him and keeps him in contraption that looks suspiciously like a toy balloon. Leo likes radishes, and his primary attack is wind-based.
  • Potty Failure: Cottar "Teeny" Gamwich (Ratling sniper, chef, and resident butt-of-all-jokes, played by Daniel) cooked (and served) a batch of poisonous space tubers in Only War. Almost the entire group of hardened guerilla soldiers ended up needing a change of pants. In his defense, Teeny didn't intend for them to get explosive diarrhea, and he'd even warned them that he'd only managed to get most of the poison out of the tubers.
  • Power Perversion Potential: Quantus the Tech Priest, David's character from Rogue Trader, is a cyborg who's mostly composed of robot parts, and can communicate with most forms of technology. His fascination with Xenos technology, and the methods he employs when examining alien archeotech, are... disturbing.
  • Power of the Void: Dr. Thomas Elwood (Daniel's character from the Atomic Robo RPG beta playtest, The Deadliest Topping) harnessed the powers of zero-point energy. He used it to build a flying golf cart.
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: From Angela's character Sienna in The Shambling: Bang bang motherfucker.
  • Rag Tag Bunch Of Misfits: In most Billyverse games, but due to the episodic nature and well defined characters in The Shambling, the PCs end up being a lot like this. A stunt double, a rich kid, a petty God loving thief, a construction worker, and a Romanian circus animal tamer and his monkey have never looked so close.
  • Red Ones Go Faster: Barsha D. Barsha believes ("loik all roit-finkin' Orks") that a red paint job will, in fact, make your ship go faster. Thanks to the power of the Waaagh!, this is sometimes the case.
  • Robot Buddy: Dr. Strauss' mechanical scarab beetle pet, Tenure (named after his not-so-secret greatest desire), from the Hollow Earth Expedition campaign.
  • Rule 63: Has been invoked occasionally.
    • Angela's character in Agents of Indigo was a gender-bent guy, who'd basically suffered an unusual work hazard and been transformed into a woman. He/she was very impressed with his/her new attributes.
    • Commissar Zane Harper (David's character in Only War) was one of the pre-generated characters that was supplied with the introductory scenario, Eleventh Hour. However, the Commissar was originally (i.e. in the scenario description) a woman called Zara Harper, but was gender-bent because: reasons.
  • Running Gag: The End of the World episodes are rife with these, played to great effect. Since Angela never tells the group which apocalypse they will be playing, they also serve to help reveal the scenario.
    • The session always begins with the group meeting for a drunken poker game, where the same characters are always introduced with the same quirks, but with different low-end jobs or deadbeat lifestyles.
    • The group always travels to Sammy's Bodega to get more beer, during which they notice some hint of what sort of apocalypse they will be encountering. Sammy is always "played" by a B-list actor/actress.
    • The apocalypse always happens while the group is getting drunk out of their minds, smoking powerful weed, and destroying the apartment they are in.
    • The group often (but not always) travels to White Castle during the apocalypse to nurse their hangovers. The White Castle often has something nefarious inside... not counting the food.
    • Stealing different terrible, uncool vehicles to escape New York and nearly getting killed in the process.
    • All the while, there is a competition for survival between the shabby bachelors they play and the much more successful, stable, and morally upstanding bachelorettes next door.
  • Signature Roar: RARRR!, God of Bears (from Part-Time Gods), always refers to himself in the third person, pronouncing his name with gusto (and a backing chorus of ordinary bears).
  • Snake Oil Salesman: Alexander McIntyre, a 200 year old alchemist, played by Jesus in the Dresden Files RPG Christmas Special.
  • Stalking is Love: Shortly after the Fandible Tropes page (i.e. what you're reading, right now) was created, someone (or possibly many someones) from Fandible posted a blog post, expressing the Fandiblers' appreciation for their fans, and the efforts that said aforementioned fans put into fandomming. Fandifanning. Whatever: that they put into being fans. Later on, they've also discussed the TV Tropes page (i.e. this) in Geeky Topics, Round Table episode 13, and mentioned how it totally wasn't creepy, nope. Nooot creepy at all.
  • Super-Senses: Sentry. (His name is not Kid Sentinel. He's not a sidekick, he's an assistant, thank you very much.) Played by Daniel in Rotted Capes. His superpowers grant him enhanced senses, including the eyesight of an eagle, and the taste of an Italian. Often wears a blindfold, so he doesn't have to bear witness to the zombie apocalypse around him.
  • Time Travel: During the Rogue Trader episode Ascended Evil, the crew of the Shadow Labyrinth accidentally travelled through time due to a mishap in the Warp. This led to several sharp remarks, such as Quantos pondering (upon their return to their own timeline) that, since they were back in their own present day, and that time was the grim darkness of the far future, this must mean that they had, in fact, gone Back to the Future. When people mentioned their reluctance to risk further temporal peccadilloes, Billy asked if they were chicken. Oh, and during their time warp, they picked up an Eldar Farseer, and since Jésus needed to come up with a name on the spot is amazingly clever, he named the Eldar Tanniyen. (Presumably, his full name must have been Biff Tanniyen.)
  • Unusual Euphemism: All hail Chao- ...err, Chris. Yes, all hail Chris!
  • Violent Glaswegian: Dr. William Gerald Clementine, David's chaotician character from the Atomic Robo RPG beta playtest, The Deadliest Topping. (A rare exception to David's tendency to play Oirish characters.)
  • Wonder Twin Powers: Torchlight, Billy's character in Rotted Capes. Used to be part of a pair of power twins, until his sister got bitten by zombies. Now, she wants to bite him, so they can both be super zombies, and restore their twin powers. His fire powers are fueled by alcohol. He's got it under control, honestly!
  • You Are Fat: Fandible is known for maintaining a constant level of sophistication in its levity.
  • You See, I'm Dying: During the Hollow Earth Expedition campaign, Jack Mavrickson (played by Billy) stoically reveals to the others that he's suffering from a large brain tumor.