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The One Shot Podcast is a Tabletop RPG actual play Podcast created by James D'Amato and Kat Kuhl in 2013, focused on exploring the story-telling possibilities of RPGs with a new system and group of players every month (or sometimes every week).
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James hosts and GMs most games, with players drawn mostly from the Chicago Improv scene. James also hosts Critical Sucess, a less-regular podcast with advice and discussion on RPGs aimed mostly at Game Masters.

In 2014, the two launched the Campaign Podcast, a sister production GMed by Kat which delves into the long-form style of roleplaying. The current campaign uses the Star Wars: Edge of the Empire system and stars the crew of the Mynock: Trystan Valentine (John Patrick Coan), Leenik Geelo (Johnny O'Mara) and Bacta (James D'Amato). These characters were first introduced in the six Star Wars episodes of One Shot, so it's best to listen to those before starting Campaign.

In 2015, James and Kat licensed the name Paracosm Press for their publishing company, and as of February 2015 are entering beta testing for their own roleplaying system, Epiphany, inspired by Groundhog Day and similar works.

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In May 2015, James and Kat started a Patreon to support their continued production and expansion of the network.

Both podcasts are joint productions of Paracosm Press and Peaches and Hot Sauce. One Shot updates every Monday, and Campaign every other Wednesday. Episodes can be found here or on iTunes.

For Campaign, see the individual series pages:


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These podcasts contains examples of:

  • Affably Evil: Many, many villains, especially in James' games.
    • The ghost of Howard Hughes in "Inspectres", especially after being hit with a Seducto-Bladder.
    • The dragon and Aaron Orkin the Orc Captain from the first "Dungeon World" episodes.
  • Affectionate Parody: Of various genres and works.
  • Camp Gay:
    • Dontrice (JPC) the shopping clerk NPC in Episode Seventeen of Campaign.
    • Another JPC character, Leon Chamelski's non-denominational Pastor Michael disguise in "One Last Job".
  • Corpsing: Inevitable at any good RPG table. Particularly prominent in the "Inspectres" episodes and most episodes of Campaign.
  • Ensemble Cast: Except for a few notable episodes ("Everyone is John", ), the focus is on the party rather than any one protagonist.
  • Family of Choice:
    • Bacta, Tryst, Leenik, Tamlin and Tony in Campaign.
    • The master magicians by the end of the "One Last Job" episodes.
  • Handsome Lech:
    • Tryst in the "Star Wars" episodes and Campaign.
  • Never Split The Party: Almost always averted when the opportunity presents itself. James and Kat even seem excited by the prospect at times.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
  • Paranormal Investigation: In the "Inspectres" episodes of One Shot.
    • Parodied by Leenik and Bacta in Episode Nineteen of Campaign.
  • Punny Name:
    • Leon Chamelski (John Patrick Coan) the disguise expert in the "One Last Job" episodes.
    • Aaron Orkin, an orc captain in the first "Dungeon World" episodes that is a master of the Walk and Talk.
    • Neimodian Sparks, Leenik's favorite romance novelist in Campaign.
    • Randy Vous, Tryst's fake name in the Myrkr arc of Campaign.
  • Science Hero:
    • Ecologist Joy Worth (Phoebe Stonebraker) and Engineer Logan Murphy (Tyler Davis) from "Our Last Best Hope".
    • Lyntel from Campaign.
    • Dr. Emile Candy from "Eight Nights of Murder!", who is also somewhat of a Mad Scientist.
  • Scooby-Dooby Doors:
    • In "Scooby Doo: Porch on the Doorstep" and Campaign "Episode Thirty".
  • Space "X": The standard way to refer to mundane objects in Campaign and the "Lasers and Feelings" episodes of One Shot.
    • Highlights include Space Gin and Space Sprite, the Space 70s and "Ok, Space Idiot!"
  • Signing Off Catchphrase: James saying "See ya next time, Heroes!" for One Shot.
    • For Campaign, Kat says "Until next time: peace is a lie, there is only passion" from the Sith Code.
  • Take That!:
    • The group, and James in particular, goes off on The Force Unleashed in the "Star Wars" episodes.
    • Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark is mocked and parodied in the "One Last Job" episodes.
    • Men's Rights Activists in Campaign Episode Three.
  • Theme Tune: For One Shot, it's Adventure by Be Your Own Pet, while Campaign uses a cover of the Star Wars theme by the Snowdens of Yesteryear.
    • Specific episodes have also had their own theme music, such as Kung Fu Fighting for the first episode of "Feng Shui 2".
  • Reference Overdosed: Nerd and pop culture is referenced almost every episode.
  • World of Pun: It's roleplayers and Improv performers, what do you expect?
  • You Fight Like a Cow: Another roleplaying standard.

    Campaign Podcast 
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: The opening narration is fond of this.
    Narrator: But is this furtive femme friend—or fatale?
  • Adorably Precocious Child: The group tends to forget Tamlin is only 5.
  • Advice Backfire: Tryst's advice to Tamlin that leads to him making "Brave and heroic decisions".
  • All Animals Are Dogs: Tony acts more like a normal dog rather than the horrifying space wolf he is. Tamlin uses the Force to keep him calm.
  • Badass and Child Duo: Bacta and Tamlin, particularly in Episode Five.
  • Bloodless Carnage: Lampshaded and then partially subverted in Episode Three.
    JPC: There's blood everywhere... There's no blood, this is a Star Wars movie. All the blood is miraculously cleaned up.
    Johnny: Well, it's A New Hope so there's...
    Kat: There's a little bit of blood.
  • Bottle Episode: Enthusiastically discussed in Episode Fifteen, which is spent entirely on the ship in hyperspace.
    • Episode Sixteen also ended up being a Bottle Episode as the players required more time to derail Kat's adventure plans.
  • Casual Kink: Tryst's various sex collars and "established fetish" for dressing in the clothing of women whose dwellings he is breaking into.
  • Characterization Marches On: The Romance Novel-reading, Tony-loving, ham-cooking Leenik in Campaign is a far cry from the more conventional bounty hunter that appears in the Star Wars One Shot episodes.
    • Cerebus Retcon: As time goes on, it becomes clear it's actual Sanity Slippage caused by years of stress and dealing with the loss of his brother. He gets better after having some time to cope.
  • Character Name Alias: In Episode Seventeen, Tryst goes with "Mark Hamill", and the rest of the gang follows suit.
    • Also Lampshaded as Bacta remarks "What are we referencing? I thought we were just making up names on the spot."
  • Clones Are People, Too: Played straight with Bacta in Episode Four.
  • Fake Band: Several are mentioned in the music festival arc, including "Sugar Death Ray", "The Kaiburr Crystals", and "The Free Radicals".
  • Fantastic Racism: The gang accuses NPCs of racism against both Rodians and clones in separate incidents in Episode Seventeen.
    • A Mandalorian calls Leenik a "bugface" in Episode Nineteen, which ends up getting the group removed from the ghost tour.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Formed with the addition of Lyntel to the crew. Tryst is Sanguine, Bacta is Choleric, Lyn is Melancholic, and Leenik is Phlegmatic.
  • Friendly Enemy: Most of their enemies actually. A lot of them are Punch Clock Villains who are just trying to make a buck.
  • I Call It "Vera": Bacta names a Blaster rifle he finds "Delilah" in Episode Seven, much to the disgust of Tryst and Leenik.
  • In-Character Commentaries: The April Fools' Day episode "Twenty Two" (actually the 21st episode), features a commentary on the first episode of Campaign by Bacta, Leenik, Tryst, Lyn, and guest-starring Tamlin.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: The Life Day Special is full of these. Bacta's podcast is apparently called "Bacta Basics"
  • Never Learned to Read: Based on a one-off joke by JPC from Episode Seventeen, possibly Tryst.
  • Nightmare Sequence: Tamlin and Bacta's fever dreams after being poisoned by the Vornskrs in Episode Three.
  • Mood Whiplash: Bacta and Tryst's touching heart-to-heart in Episode Four amidst the usual zaniness.
  • Multiple Headcase: Both the Death Stick dealer and owner(s) of Guns, Guns, Guns 2 in Episode Seventeen are two headed aliens.
  • Noble Bigot: Bacta is usually a good and accepting guy, but he hates droids with a passion due to serving in the Clone Wars. A more comical example is Tryst's various racist tendencies for a wide variety of reasons.
  • Only Sane Woman: Lyntel, who's constantly baffled at the boys insane antics. Bacta is also usually more reasonable than Tryst or Leenik, but he can be just as wacky from time to time.
  • Parental Substitute: Bacta for Tamlin, Leenik for Tony.
  • Person as Verb: "Pulling a Leenik" is getting captured intentionally. "Sending them a Valentine" is Tryst's patented seduction method.
  • Running Gag: Tryst using advantages to make himself more handsome. Also, Kat asking for dice and being sarcastically refused.
  • Shopping Montage: Explicitly discussed in Episode Seventeen, when Leenik and Lyn buy outfits for the music festival for the whole crew. Kat also sings the Makeover song from Clone High.
  • Sidetracked by the Analogy: JPC's extended explanation of a box in Episode Six.
    JPC: Y'know, the box that you carry out when you get fired from your job, with the picture of your pregnant wife and a little house plant.
    Johnny: And a baguette.
    JPC: And a baguette. 'Cause you bought a baguette for lunch. You're not gonna leave it there. You're gonna give it to a duck.
    James: You can't afford to give that baguette to a duck! You've gotta feed your family with it.
    JPC: Your wife is a duck in this scenario.
  • Tagalong Kid: Tamlin, the precocious and traumatized five year old Zabrak the crew rescued from the Death Star.
  • Take That Me: During the Life Day special, they make a lot of jokes about improv artists (apparently, if you feed them, they move in and sleep on your couch forever). All of them are improv artists.
  • Team Chef: Way back in Episode One it was mentioned that Bacta is the crew's go to cook. In later episodes Leenik, who cooks multiple hams during the Holiday Special, seems to have stepped into this role.
  • Team Dad: Bacta acts as one of these, both to actual child Tamlin and Man Children Tryst and Leenik.
  • Team Pet: Tony Vornskr, a giant, Force-sensitive Space Wolf who was tamed by Leenik in Episode Two, who now considers him a son. There's also a rabbit-kangaroo thing on the ship too. Somewhere.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Shockingly enough, Leenik. He proved to be completely brutal when he was in charge, and was the only character who didn't care that the Kyber Crystals publicly executed someone. He's typically the one to suggest a cruel but efficient plan (when he's not suggesting getting captured) and feel no remorse for it. He also heavily implies that he enjoys killing people, though with some sadness, and in the (admittedly non-kanan) second Life Day special, in the Bad Future where Tamlin became a Hand of the Emperor under Aava and killed the rest of the Mynock crew, Leenik had become an ISB agent working alongside Zero — and unlike Tamlin, there's no evidence that he was brainwashed into it.
  • Trojan Prisoner: Leenik's MO.
  • You Mean "Xmas": The glorious "Life Day Holiday Special".
  • Your Answer to Everything: Leenik will always suggest getting captured, even if it makes absolutely no sense.

    One Shot Podcast 
  • As Himself: In the Dread episodes, "Horror on Mt. Holycross" and "S-N-HELL", and the "All Outta Bubblegum" episodes, the Player Characters are the players playing them.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname:
    • President Steel Johnson (James D'Amato) in "Our Last Best Hope".
    • Felix "Flex" Cockhammer (JPC) in "Inspectres".
    • Cass Meridian (Nick Wagner) in "Lasers and Feelings with Improvised Star Trek".
  • Becoming the Mask: In "One Last Job", Brandon Lightning (Patrick Winegar) expresses concern that after Leon (JPC) disguises himself as a tapestry, he won't be able to stop.
  • Celebrity Cameo:
    • Lucy and Ricky Ricardo and President Franklin Roosevelt appear in "Pulp Cthulhu Part 2".
    • Dennis Rodman, Triple H, Bill Laimbeer, John Rocker, Bono, David Blaine and Lance Armstrong party with dictators, perform magic and juggle Koreans in the "One Last Job" episodes. Also Harry Houdini.
    • Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in "Our Last Best Hope".
  • Christmas Episode: Actually a Hanukkah special with the "Eight Nights of Murder! Deadlands Noir" episodes.
  • "Die Hard" on an X: Inspector Jackie can't catch a break 2: Die Harder in China.
  • Eyepatch After Time Skip: Played with in the first of the Star Wars: Edge of the Empire episodes. Following the 5 year gap since the first Star Wars episodes, Leenik now has an eyepatch that he wears purely for fashion reasons.
  • Flashback Cut: A staple of "One Last Job", in order to explain the characters various strengths and weaknesses.
    • Also part of the mechanics in The Watch, where flashbacks to a character's eulogy at a funeral can give them bonuses in the present.
  • Good Angel, Bad Angel: In the Dungeon World "Gencon Special", this is invoked by Balderdash the Wizard (Kat Kuhl) and Blaine the Paladin (Sam Kaye) giving opposite advice to young Rutger the Fighter (David Ewalt).
  • Gretzky Has the Ball: In "One Last Job", John Patrick Coan refers to the basketball "field". This extends to his character Leon not knowing what a 3 pointer is and trying to beat the Utah Jazz by "fouling out" the opposing players as Dennis Rodman.
  • Halloween Episode: Every year. For 2013, it was the Cthulhu themed "Everyone Is John". 2014 had an entire Halloween month, with "S-N-HELL" and the "Dracula Dossier" episodes.
  • I Need to Go Iron My Dog: Parodied in the "Pulp Cthulhu" episodes by Brian Holden as Batman.
    Bruce Wayne: Listen, I was trying to help you out, but I'm glad that I'm off the hook. 'Cause I love having all my money. So, I'm gonna go back to my mansion and look at all my moneeeey. See ya.
  • Interspecies Romance: Cobb (Zach Mast) the Halfling's forbidden and Squicky love for Buttercup the Pony in the "Crazy Partiers" D&D episodes.
  • Lounge Lizard: Willem Baby Blues (Alex Manich) the Lounge Bard in the first "Dungeon World" episodes.
  • Love Triangle: More of a Love Square in "Our Last Best Hope, with all three male PCs having a thing for Joy Worth (Phoebe Stonbraker).
  • Luke Nounverber: Exaggerated as a Running Gag in the "Inspectres" episodes. Party members Felix Cockhammer (JPC) and Dillon Crackbacker (James Dugan) refuse to believe a last name that does not consist of two words is real.
  • Magical Girl: Angela (Kat Kuhl) from the "Feng Shui" episodes. There's also two episodes using the Sailor Moon RPG.
  • Master of Disguise: Leon Chamelski (John Patrick Coan) in the "One Last Job" episodes, whose actual race and nationality is unknown. At various points disguises himself as Dennis Rodman and a tapestry.
  • Noodle Incident: Parodied with "The Event" in the "One Last Job" episodes. This trope is actually a requisite part of the game.
  • Present-Day Past: Parodied in the "Inspectres" episodes, which supposedly take place in 1999 but features Bitcoins.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: Invoked by name in "One Last Job". As per the game, this is how the party is formed.
  • Socially Awkward Hero:
    • Trinket (Maggie Dempsey), the awkward teenaged rogue from the first "Dungeon World" episodes.
  • Sunglasses at Night: In "Lasers and Feelings with Improvised Stark Trek, Donna Punch (Hannah Parsons) wears Cool Shades 24/7 (and on a spaceship).
  • Thanksgiving Episode: The pioneers-in-space "Colonials" in 2013.
  • The Chick: Parodied in "Our Last Best Hope" with the adorable ecologist Joy Worth (Phoebe Stonebraker).
    President Steel Johnson: Look, we're all wild about Joy, I think everybody's made that clear. Joy is a pillar of stability.
    Logan Murphy: Of sanity, even.
  • The Needless: Blaine the Paladin (Sam Kaye) in the "Gencon Special". He misguidedly tries to teach Rutger (David Ewalt) and a bunch of orphans his ways.
    Blaine: You don't need to sleep. You don't need to eat. You don't need to drink.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Tom Riddle (Johnny O'Mara) in the "Pulp Cthulhu" episodes.
    • In "Our Last Best Hope", the murderous, cannibalistic janitor Greasy Fry (Brad Pike).
  • Unfortunate Names:
    • Crispin Nugget (Brad Pike) and Greasy Fry in "Our Last Best Hope".
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: In "One Last Job Part 3", Kim Jong-dos reconciles with the ghost of his father, Kim Jong-deuce (actually Leon in disguise).
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Taken to the extreme at the end of the "One Last Job" episodes.
  • You Can Leave Your Hat On: In "Edge of the Empire Part 2", Tryst strips, puts on the Big Bad's kimono and waits on her bed, leaving his Stormtrooper helmet on.
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