Mean Machine Talks

#25 - Aidan Half-Troll | Archaeologist and Content Creator

October 01, 2021 Mean Machine Dean with Aidan Half-Troll Episode 25
Mean Machine Talks
#25 - Aidan Half-Troll | Archaeologist and Content Creator
Show Notes Transcript

My guest was Aidan Half-Troll, he is a professional archaeologist for 14 years, lifelong gamer, metalhead, occasionally funny on twitch



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Hi, everyone. Welcome to mean machine talks. I'm Dean. And, uh, yeah, it's been a while. Uh, since I've done one of these, I had to take a bit of a hiatus, um, for reasons. Uh COVID and, uh, I just lost a bit of creativity, I guess, and I kind of needed to go away and, uh, rethink, uh, I was also waiting for this brand new camera that you can see.

Uh, so we're not looking at the three quarter angle now. It means I can actually look at my guests in the eyes, which is a good thing. Uh, anyway, with that being said, uh, I'm joined today by a wonderful guest, uh, good friend of mine. Um, and also, uh, I only discovered recently what he actually does is a day job, thus being the reason why we're actually having this talk today, which, um, you'll understand why in a moment.

And, uh, yeah, he's, he's got an incredible background, but. Aiden half troll is with us. Probably one of the best using names. I've heard.  and, uh, yeah, Aiden is, uh, is also an archeologist, um, in his daytime, uh, and by evening is, uh, he's half a troll. So you can, we'll go into that in a bit. But anyway, welcome to, uh, leave machine.

Talk to Aiden. How are you today? I'm very well, Dean. Thank you for having me. It's an absolute pleasure to be here finally, cause uh, we've been yes. I half planning this for a while now. Haven't we. Yeah, I know it has been a while. I can only apologize for, oh, that's all right, man. But I thought, I thought, I thought I needed to put you back at the Peck in order that there was a growing list of, uh, candidates, but, uh, we needed to, we needed to do this.

I'm, I'm fascinated by your, uh, your career. And, uh, I guess the thing is, is, oh, I guess with most people you kind of see the, the streaming persona and then obviously, you know, what you doing your day job and the two just don't really cross over, but they kind of do, which we we'll talk about in, in, uh, in a bit, but, um, yeah, fascinating to, uh, to talk about and, uh, and welcome.

Um, it's, it's great to have you, how, how have you been dealing with things like, and stuff like that? I mean, you've been sort of just, I mean, there's a fine collection of books there, so I'm assuming you may have done a little bit of reading. Yeah, there's been, there's been a bit of reading, um, there, here and there.

I think to be honest, like I've read miles, there's a few projects on there. A few comics, uh, Yeah. Couple of common books, but yeah. Um, well, you know, why, what can you say? I led best. I've been dealing with it the best you can do. Um, I worked through it all, so I was, I was well fortunate I guess, but then at the same time, going out and working every day and not being able to do anything else is, you know, can be just as much of a strain as, as you know, being stuck at home and locked down.

So, you know, you kind of just get through it the best you can, but yeah, I mean, I was definitely fortunate enough to be able to stay working. Didn't have any of the, you know, financial and things that some others might have suffered. Um, So out and about and visit and, well, I was one of the only people actually in the company that wasn't fared.

So for a time I was doing, I think, four or five different projects consecutively. Um, so yeah, very busy. I didn't really have time to think about what was, what was going on. Um, cuz I was, you know, up and down like a Brad's Nat as male Graham used to say. So  yeah. Busy, busy. Well, I, I have learned that comment for years brought back some memories.

Um, yeah, I mean it must have been really difficult cuz um, I mean for myself I've been home based since, oh let me think. Um, I think it was February, 2020 when I was sent home. Uh, and I've been based in MMD HQ since, um, and yeah, like yourself, you know, I, I wasn't fair. Like I was lucky enough to have a role where I'm, you know, working from here mm-hmm  so, um, But yeah, I mean, my, my brother works in it and he was, uh, having to go into the office and it was hilarious because he was the only one.

So it was like he was having to open up this entire office and kind of like stroll through and, you know, do what he wants, but he's got his whole office and he's the only one there, but, you know, things like it get massively overlooked because, you know, essentially without his, his infrastructure being there, no one would be able to work at home.

Exactly. It shows you how important some of those roles are. So yeah, it's, it's fascinating how some people have dealt with, um, working at home better than others. I, I think I'm getting to my end of my tether. Um, I've just to come up with some creative ways of working now, which involve like using VR and like trying to escape my flat into somewhere else.

Probably it's like, oh, it's lunchtime. Oh, I'm back in my flat  nevermind.  but no. Well, the good thing is, is that you've kept busy and I think that's, um, an important theme with some of the other guests that I've spoken to. A lot of what they've said is keeping busy. Yeah. Um, During COVID and, and obviously keeping working and, and having the benefit of having cash coming in is, is a brilliant privilege.

Mm-hmm  um, so, so yeah. So going into your job of being a  an archeologist. I mean, when I, I can't remember when I discovered, I think it may have been one of your streams and you dropped it. I just went what that again? Yeah.  what . So, so yeah, archeology, like how, how did you get into that? It's um, it's not that exciting of a story I've got to admit, but it's funny.

Cause I just obviously, oh, where we guys downplay it, it's really not, it's really not. Um, but it's funny just how many people still don't know, because obviously I it's my job and has been for like the last 14 years. So I just kind of assumed that everybody knows, you know what I mean? And somebody, the other day, literally two days ago on Twitter was like, I thought you worked in a car park and.

No,  not that there's anything wrong with working in the car park. I can't come. It's a world apart from what I actually do. Um, but yeah, no, it's, it's honestly, it's really not that exciting of a story. I did, you know, I did my air levels. Um, looking at, going to university had absolutely no idea what I wanted to do and, uh, looked at various courses and I was looking at all sorts of stuff, film production, and you know, a little bit of, I mean, I'm, I'm, I'm not that tech savvy at all, but I was looking at bits of it and things like that.

Um, and I sent basically Papa half troll turned around to me and said, well, I'm paying for this degree. So you do something sensible. I am paying for you to piss him out for three years. I was like,  okay, dad. Yeah. Fair enough. Um, so I decided, um, I was gonna be a teacher. I was looking into taking a, taking on, um, a teaching qualification or going into teaching and, um, Looked to doing a PCG.

And my kind of, sort of loophole was that basically any undergrad degree will qualify you to do a then on, to do a PCG qualification. So I thought, right, sure. Well, I can do something that's maybe a bit out there because I've got the plan that I'm going to be a teacher. Dad can't argue with that. Um, so, and I've always been interested in history, particularly sort of ancient history, you know, ancient, Greece, ancient Rome, um, things like that.

So I, I bought, I also quite like being outside and getting mucky and messing about, so I thought, well, archeology, that seems like it's the best of both worlds. I'll give it a go. And that's what I did. So I went to, uh, university of Sheffield, studied archeology. Well, it was archeology and ancient history when I started my degree and they ended up changing the course and it's just archeology by the time I finished, um, with a brief period studying in Australia as well.

Um, Yeah, I came to the end of it and wasn't, wasn't in a rush to go straight into further study. So I thought, well, I'll see if I can get some work. I'll see if I can work as, um, as an archeologist. So, you know, packed up my shiny new travel and went to work in a printers for two months because I couldn't find any archeology jobs  right.

Day. And then just happened to get chat into a, a chap in my local pub on night. And he happened to be the foreman of a site in Liverpool that had a big archeological excavation going on. And he was like, oh wow. You know, give these guys a call. So I, I gave those guys a call and, um, yeah, I've been with him ever since.

So yeah, it's not that exciting of a story. Really. I kind of fell into it by accident. Cause after doing it for a year or two, I was. I just, I just didn't fancy going back to study. I changed my mind about the idea of teaching. I was quite happy doing what I was doing out and about, you know, every, every couple of weeks you're on a different site, you're in a different town.

You're a different place. I was still living my parents at the time as well. So it was a bit of freedom to be aware during the week and off doing my own thing. Um, so yeah, I just, and the next thing I knew, you know, five, six years had gone by, I climbed the ladder a little bit and I was like, right, well, I guess this is what I'm doing now.

So yeah, here, I still am, but it's been good. That's cool. I, I really like that. Yeah. Cuz I guess, you know, when you think of normal, I say normal, uh, uh, I kind of education to job path. I mean, if you look at kind of like, I dunno, maybe the medical industry, you know, you would kind of go there, study an overall profession and then naturally you would work either work in a hospital or private hospital, however your, your career path goes.

But yeah, I guess with archeology there isn't. I mean in my mind. I mean, I can't , you know, most, most people would be in a real, a company that's in a certain industry for archeological archeological stuff. Wouldn't have a clue. Yeah, no, so yeah, it, that must have been quite, I guess, quite scary, cuz I mean, you know, there's a few different, um, sectors, I guess you could study.

I mean, history's another one. I know someone who studied, um, I think it was like French history or something mm-hmm  and they were like, oh, you know, I can come out and go and work in a, you know, in a lab or something, looking at, you know, um, artifacts or something like that. And you know, I think now they're actually working in like a supermarket and they've actually got quite, quite high in that role, but obviously the, the disparity of what they've studied versus what they've actually into is quite profound.

So yeah. I dunno how, how, I mean, that must have been a real shock, cuz I dunno if you had that mentality, you were just gonna come out of universities for. Um, but that must have been a hell of a shot. I mean, yeah. Uh, I mean, obviously we got the, you know, the university helped and these pointed out companies we could apply for jobs for, and those various websites that deal specifically with archeology jobs.

And, um, but you, you, you know, you, you hack your ring. I got rid, uh, and, and see what comes about a lot of, sort of starting positions in archeology. Um, the it's it's that old thing of, they want you to have X amount of experience, but how would you get the experience if they don't let you get the job, the job?

Yeah. So, you know, us most, most contracts starting contracts they'll want six months experience. And, uh, I, um, Well, I lied, basically. I, um, I embellished quite a lot about some of the field schools I'd done. And, um, some of the, some of the voluntary work I'd done and just about kind of said, yeah, there's six months there.

Um, the other thing about archeology is quite a lot of projects end up being really pushed for time and deadlines and will get to that point where they just need people. Um, and I was fortunate enough that the first project I went on was really struggling to get finished and they were just taking people on my Fran center.

So I got on a project and, um, I was working in Chester and I didn't, I didn't drive. So I was getting up at four o'clock in the morning, um, getting the first bus of the day to Manchester, getting running around the corner to the train station, getting on the train, getting to Chester, running across the city center to get to the site working all day and then doing it in reverse.

I was up at four in the morning. I was getting in at 10 o'clock at night, I think. And I was like, I've just gotta stick it out for three months. So I've like legit got that experience that I've been claiming that I've got. It was a great sat though. There was a lot going on and I learned more in my first week there than I did in three years, you know, university like actually physically doing the job and learning the theory of it, or, you know, sure.

You can appreciate two different things. Uh, and it was, it was busy sat with the, the center of Chester. There was a lot of Roman stuff, but there was a medieval cemetery as part of it. We ended up finding some early medieval, Anglo Saxon buildings that had robbed out the Roman stone for use in their construction.

Um, there was a mosaic, a section of Roman road. Um, it was quite interesting actually, the first time I saw mosaic and the first time I saw mosaic excavated, they basically spray it with this like glue solution and that which seals it. And then they roll it all like a carpet and pack it up and check it off is the weirdest thing ever.

Wow.  wow. That's weird. Wow. That's fascinating. I mean, I mean that, that comes into what I was gonna ask you next, cuz. I mean part of my ignorance to, towards archeology. I mean, I, I understand an amount of it. Mm-hmm  but how does, how does a, I dunno someone like yourself or a business get a job? Is it a case of a building starts, they discover something and then they have to call someone in and then they begin looking into it.

Or is there something a bit more, a more of an intelligent way that, I mean, that's not far off, that's not far off it it's part of the planning. I mean, basically, right. Okay. A little bit of sort of further background. There's essentially two types of archeology or two types of archeologists. You work in the academic side of it where, you know, you're attached to a university, you, you teaching, you know, you've got your own research project.

You writing books, papers, articles, et cetera, or there's the other side of it, which is what I do, which is commercial archeology, which we are essentially part of the we're part of the building trade we're part of we're part of the construction industry. And when people put in, when you put in planning a planning application for whatever it might be, um, from building a conservatory on your house, up to, you know, a massive major new road scheme, um, that's when, uh, when it goes into the planning office, they will look and most planning departments will have an archeologist, um, in residence as it were, and they'll check work that's been done in the area.

Is there anything that they know about, of historical interest that's in that area? What's the likelihood that your construction project impacts on anything. Um, and then they will highlight it. It'll be a condition of the planning that you have to get some kind of archeological survey done. Um, and it might just be.

Somebody like myself, you know, just I'll rock up and watch you dig a few foundations and have a look in the hall, take a few pictures and go, nah, there's nothing there crack on. Or we might be there for a year moving thousands of skeletons so you can build your road. Um, I think I'm allowed to say that cause it's been published in the press, but that's basically what I've been doing for last.

Um, wow. So, yeah. Uh, so yeah, it's, it is it's, it's part of the planning. So that's effectively how we get how we get our work. Um, and you know, we, we're an established company, um, So we've got returning clients and things like that. We do. And we do, we do jobs for sort of either end of those scales. I have been in people's gardens and watching them, digging foundations for new garages and watching them learn new soil packs for downstairs toilets that they're installing.

And I've also been yeah. You know, in on major road schemes and gas pipelines and, uh, housing estate and sort of everything in between. So, right. Yeah. It's, that must be so fascinating cuz I guess, I guess the excitement from your point of view and again, correct me if I'm wrong, must be the, the not knowing of what you're gonna get.

Right. Cause I mean, you know, you could stumble in someone's back gardens and discover. Something completely random where as you said, you could go to this huge site and end up with, well, nothing. So, oh yeah. Yeah. It must be really exciting. You know, I prefer than nothing. There's less paperwork involved.

the reports are a lot easier to write if you found nothing. Uh, is that a skull there? No, no, move it away. But you know, as you know, I'm joking aside sort of finding nothing sometimes is as good as finding something. Particularly if you've got an area where people are convinced, there is something that, you know, you can dis disproving.

It is as good as proving it effectively because it's, well, it greases the wheels for further planning. They know that there's nothing in that area, things like that. Um, from a, you know, sort of the, the industry side of it, um, from sort of the, I mean, all archeologists are passionate about what passionate about what they do.

We want to find stuff. Sure. We like to find stuff. Um, but at the same time, The process of recording and escalating features and things is destructive. And what you end up you are, we effectively destroys by recording them. Um, and then the re the report we produce is preservation is preservation by record and report.

Um, so there are, there's, there's been plenty of guess over the years where we've sort of said, well, you could change your plans, so you don't impact on that and do it another way. And that does occasionally happen. Um, so, you know, if, if we can leave it alone, we will leave it alone. We know it's there, but do we necessarily want to destroy it when we don't have to?

You know what I mean? Um, but yeah, it's varied. Very, very varied sites are always different. Like you say, you don't know what you're gonna find. If you're gonna find something, I mean, it can make for long, I've done a lot of reading at work on, on job experiments, sitting, watching nothing happening for days on end.

And then suddenly something will, uh, something will go, something will crop up. In fact, yeah, one of my final moments.  and I'm gonna, I'm gonna use this. I'm gonna say now I'd not been in the field for a while. I'd had some time out. I'd been doing office stuff, it with me, first job. And I went and I'd been on this wind farm watching Dean hall, rods and turban platforms on the side of a Penan in horizontal sleep for like a month found nothing at all.

Right. And then all of a sudden it was like a Thursday afternoon. They strip off a little bit of peak and it was the side. So where they were digging was beneath like three meters of peak. And I see what I'm convinced is a ditch. It's a linear feature or the terminal end of a ditch. It was like, oh, okay.

Now it's under three meters of peak. And a general rule of thumb is a meter thickness of Pete is a thousand years. So I was like, okay, we're looking at. Something, something historic here. So I found the office, we've got this ditch and excavating it at the minute. Rah RA it's like, all right, I'll get some people out.

It's under three meters of peak. We'll have to get the environmental site with the coring equipment. We'll take some, cause there's this big who Harbor office is mobilizing. I get to the bottom of the ditch and see the indentation of Digger bucket, tooth marks. And it was a geotechnical pit that they previously dug  yeah, it's a little bit sheepish had to farm back on said cancel all that.

It's nothing I got ahead of myself. Put it, put it, put it back, put it back.  we don't, we don't know. So, you know, no, we make mistakes. The, either some was in my eyes. I couldn't  couldn't see, we we've all done it, mate. I've I've done things similar to that in, in the field. I'm in where you blow up a massive thing, like we've got, we've got a problem.

And then all of a sudden you go, no, no, no. Don't worry what? No. Yeah, no, it's fine. Some was in my eyes. I couldn't, I couldn't see it properly. That's fine. Yeah. I got a bit of stick for that. When I went back to the office. It's fine. Have they, have they named it Aiden? They, this is like a big bullet. No, no, no.

Don't give any ideas. Somebody might, somebody might listen to us. Anyone's watching. Don't do that. Um, so you said you went to Australia. Was that with regards to work or your study? Um, no, it was, we, it was a family thing. We, we tried to immigrate basically, um, it right long story short, it wasn't for us. It didn't really work out.

So we, uh, we came back and I picked up my studies. Um, I was still at the, so still at university. So I'd finished my first year and we went out right during what would've been my second year. And I studied for a semester in a, in an Australian university, carried on my archeology degree. Um, So, yeah, it was ended up being a four year degree rather than three year because of this like years hiccup where we, we tried to relocate through the side of the world and decided that actually we didn't like it and came back to east SL well, it's, it's, it's, it's a bit, bit, bit, bit of a change from the climate point of view, but, um, and the accident, of course mm-hmm , but you know, it, it must have been, I mean, that must have been a real upheaval.

Cause I mean, especially if you've started studying something and then you've gotta like uptick and then move and then you've gotta think, well, am I now gonna stay here to practice and do what I need to do? Or yeah. But, well, obviously that, that wasn't the case. So yeah. Um, I, I D I'm just trying to think what archeology would be like in Australia must be fascinating to look like.

I think to be honest, I re I can remember thinking at the time, while I was, while I was studying, I thought if I do end up doing this as a career, I probably won't stay in Australia to do it. Um, right. Because I mean, you've, it, it, obviously, it's not particularly old country as far as. You know, Western civilization, if you wanna call it is concerned.

Um, so they've got the, the prehistory of the Aboriginal people, which involves a lot of sacred SACS and they don't get looked at. And, um, sure. You know, you can't disturb them for, for ethical reasons and things like that. Sure. Um, and then the other side is colonial, uh, European settlers, which is a couple of hundred years old.

And I'm not that interested in it, quite frankly. It's a little bit too modern for me. Um, and the thing about Australia is they have so much space that it's really not an issue for them to. Move projects and things. Um, so they don't impact on any archeology at all. So I think, I think there's a lot more, I think archeologists in Australia tend to be more on the academic side of things than they are actually practically working out there.

Although there is some, there is some scope for it. Um, but you hear stories of roads running for, you know, a couple of thousand kilometers. And then all of a sudden there's a little kink, cuz it just goes round a, a sacred Aboriginal set, things like that. Interesting. Is there much crossover internationally with your role where like you have to go out to countries to give expertise or that you have to bring someone in if you've discovered something of interest?

Um, I mean, not, I haven't personally, um, but we do have, I do have colleagues that have, um, interests overseas. Um, he's uh, one of our project managers has recently been involved in a lot of work in Saudi. Um, wow. Looking at, uh, I think they're. I think they're doing building surveys on mosques out there.

Right. Um, he's also done a lot of work in Israel on some of the big tell tax and things. Um, so the work is done through the company, but it's kind of his own contacts and his own interests that have brought it in. Right. I see. Um, and there was another, another lady that worked for us she's she left a few years ago, but she had a similar involvement with the project in Turkey that she'd, she'd go out to sort of every year.

Um, so I mean, we did have an office in France for a while. I don't remember a few people, but I never, I never went to work there myself. Although I said, I'd be up for it. Uh, but no, we, I say we, we are very much tied to cuz we are very much adds construction with, you know, we we're working pretty much exclusively in, in the UK and primarily cause of where we are based.

It's the north north of England really? Um, yeah, we've got. Couple of offices in the south of the country that deal with, you know, they've got their patch where you've got our patch as it were. And then obviously you're always competing with other units and things. So there are like, York's under one unit's control and nobody else gets a looking in York really.

Um, right. Cause they're just established there and they tend to do all the work there. So you do find these little spots where other companies don't really get a look in because it's just the domain of one particular unit. Um sure. But in theory, and you know, I can be, or could be called to go and work anywhere in the, in the country.

And potentially we could, we could get some work overseas. There's nothing necessarily stopping it, but it's unlikely to happen. I I'd say. I guess that's the thing, cuz in my mind, when you think of archeology, when you think of like how Hollywood drama, dramatizes, everything, right. You're gonna say in down the drums aren't we found something we've got, we've got a cool subway in it's like, you know, this crack team goes out off, off often it ends with most of them being killed.

But anyway, um, yeah, the dramatization of archeology is, uh, is, is quite hilarious because obviously, I mean, I'm assuming your day job, as you said from day to day could be as boring as going into someone's garden or you know, a whole huge site where something's been discovered. But you know, it's, it's hilarious to see that that difference between reality and what's obviously D dramatized and that does obviously happen.

You know, there are examples where, you know, I mean there was a couple of huge discoveries. I think it was, was it shield last year in Egypt, but they discovered like a whole like undiscovered, like town or something. It was like, can you imagine that poor guy like chipping away going, uh, we keep finding stuff, we're gonna need a bigger team.

Yeah. I mean, it does, it does happen. It that if you're working within a certain area, I mean, I've, I've done various several projects where you are, you're working, stripping a stripping, an area it's a fan at size. You, you think, right. There's nothing there. There's nothing there. And you come down to the last day and all of a sudden on cover a whole bunch of stuff and you've gotta phone it in.

And then the consultant will come and the manager come and the county archeologist will come and they all decide that it's something quite significant. And all of a sudden you dig in three times the area and you need to get 20 more people into out. And it's wow. It does. It does happen. I mean, we did. Um, no, I'm sure.

One of the big, one of a big project we did on the Aman, um, it was one of the first big projects I worked on. So was back in 2007, 2008. I pretty much just started. Right. Um, and we were working on Ronalds way airport. Um, there. Expansion, basically there was some new, um, I think it was some new EU legislation that said that taxiways and runways had to be a certain length.

So they ended up doing all this expansion. Um, and we found a bronze edge village, um, under one of the new proposed taxiways. Well, we found half of bronze edge village because the other half of it was in the adjacent field outside of the airport. Um, and wasn't being developed so we know it's there, but we literally were just excavating.

We had halves of houses to dig and then the rest of it was offsite as it were. Um, wow. And then again, we were due to finish and a friend of mine was watching this last little bit of stripping and it was literally right on the, it was the end of the existing run runway, right on the edge of the island and couple of machine scrapes.

And there was this big dark circle, um, like a big. Burnt patch effectively or patch of burnt material. And it turned out to be a 10,000 year old Mesolithic house that has that. We got a quarter of, uh, what was it? 35,000 bits of work Flint in, um, it's partially rewritten the model of migration from Europe into the British aisles from because the, the, the, all the houses were elsewhere and we found this other one.

So, yeah, it's, it's rewritten the migration model. Um, it's wow. Pretty significant stuff. Um, I'm assuming that's probably the most interesting find you've had so far then. Uh, it's it was certainly a big one. Um, I mean, I once found a tenor in an old jacket. That was, that was quite good as. That's my favorite question is what did you buy?

What did you buy with it though? I was on the way to the pub. So I like , um, money, well spent sub would say. Yeah. Yeah. Um, I have to show on that jocking every time. Cause I always get asked that question. What's your best fan, but no, that, that was a massive project. Um, I mean, I've been quite fortunate. I've worked at Stonehenge.

I've worked at HED Adrian's wall. Um, oh wow. I I've worked so two world heritage sites. I think I peaked really early. Quite honestly. I can see it just being field drains and post medieval boundary ditches from me on out. Cuz all the good stuff happened early on in the career been done. Yeah  um, but yeah.

Yeah. Ronalds way airport was, was a huge, huge project, both in terms of man and man hours. Um, Yeah. Ultimately the findings sort of, you know, real say rewriting the history books, which, you know, doesn't happen all that often. Um, and that was the aisle of man, you said, right? Yeah. Yeah. Right. I'm just taking notes.

Cause I'm interested to ever look at that. Oh yeah. I mean, there's uh, there is an episode of cost that came and filmed us for that one. Oh, oh yeah, here we, here we go. Cheap plug  I'm on where you in it. I am. I'm in the background. I don't say anything. I'm just in the background. Hi mum. Right? You dig that mate.

Um, I was also in a, I was also in a background of a time team episode as well when the came are film at stone. Oh, here we go. And funnily enough, talking about hi mum, my mum recorded it and I was round at house when she was watching it and she paused it and went, look, there you are. And I was like, mum, that's not me.

And she was convinced and it wasn't, it wasn't me. It, no that's you was like, no mum, it's not, I promise you. That's not me. And I fast forwarded it to where I actually was. And I was like, that's me, its like I'm on the first born son. It's fine. But yeah, that, that chap. Telling everybody is definitely not me.

bless the question is how many other people did she tell that particular person was you? That's the question? Yeah. God knows. Probably looking at all, actually simply thinking that's not your end. Not about that's fantastic. I mean, again, like, I, it is funny cuz when I, when I, well, how can I say it? When, when I first kind of, I dunno, maybe got into history properly and first got exposed to archeology was actually at the, um, oh, the Commonwealth Institute, which I think is in London.

If I remember rightly um, we went there as a school trip many, many means ago and there was a section that was all about archeology. And I remember looking at the war and there was all this like really cool stuff. And obviously you've got the commonwealths, obviously items from all different countries in the Commonwealth, um, union.

And then I remember there was a pit and this is quite a funny story. There was like a, it was like a sand pit. And they gave you like all like tools to use, to kind of SI through and stuff like that. And it was funny because there was one particular thing. And like, I remember all the teachers were like, oh right.

You know, start looking for this. And like my mates, like, well, I found this and everyone's like, yeah, I found out and I'm going over. This is me. Pretty crap then. And apparently there was one last thing that apparently to find it, you would have to be of like really skilled or something like that. And I literally just put the thing in and shook it and I was like, what's that?

And the person came over and went, how did you find that? And I went, I dunno, I put it in there mate. And pulled it out. That's what I did. And he went, do you know? No, one's done that in like three years. I was like, I guess I'm like really cool. I'm really good. Like that's how, and like, the teachers were like, oh my God, he's a genius.

I'm like, I literal, I literally got the thing and put it in the sand and went like that. And it appeared like that, that isn't a sign of genius. Right? I mean, you can say. That's really cool, but yeah, but never since then, like it kind of triggered this thing of just learning more, more and more about history.

And as I said, you know, I dunno why I feel like modern TV, doesn't it over dramatizes, maybe some of it, I guess that's through film to try and get people hooked and stuff. But, um, I still think it's a fascinating area to look at because, you know, as you said, you know, you could literally be digging some it in your garden and all of a sudden be like, Hey, there's a skull here.

Like what the hell's this? Yeah. I mean, it's just discoveries. Yeah, definitely. It's a cool, it's a cool feeling. Getting an object. I mean, I'll be honest, you know, the, the, it's not like we're pulling swords out the ground left right. And center, you know? Sure. That's what people think. Right. , you know, by and large it's pieces.

Pottery broken it's it's rubbish effectively. A lot of when we're excavating features and pits and things, they're rubbish pits. So it's domestic refuge sites, bits of animal born bits of broken pottery. You might get the occasional coin and stuff, but you know, it's not just treasure after treasure after treasure, but that for me is more interesting because this is why I preferred sort of why I leaned more towards archeology than just straight history, because archeology is the study of the everyday person, um, history.

You've got your big adventure Kingsy Queens and, and, you know, whatever. Whereas archeology focuses a lot more on the everyday lives of the common focus, which I found a lot more interesting how people live their day to day lives, regardless of what battles were being for, or, um, you know, what political upheaval was going on in the background.

It's sure. Yeah. How you know, job logs got on and did his. Day to day routine and, and fed himself and his family and things like that. Um, so that that's always been the, the bigger appeal. Um, but I mean, yeah, sure. It's cool to find. So then it's, you do find some interesting objects that are not necessarily precious, but a step above, just say a broken piece of pottery.

Um, I found a Roman, a Roman ear spoon once, which is basically the, the precursor to the cotton. Bud was a tiny little spoon for cleaning. Wow. For cleaning the wax out of your ears. Wow. So you found little interesting objects like that we had on this set that we're working on at the minute we had, um, a pipe tamper and it's, uh, I'll, I'll send you the link to it later, cuz it's, it's a little man in a state of excitement.

Um, that's how it's, that's how it's fashioned. So, or in fact, actually, in fact, my best, right. My best found my best found was Roman porn. I found a pornographic Roman bowl on that, on my first set really in Chester. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. It's great. Um, I think there's pictures like on the internet as well. Um, I, I say I found I didn't, but I was there when it was found, it was found on the side I was working.

No. Sure. Um, so it's a type of pottery. That's stereotypically Roman, it's called, um, Samian wear and it's it's red. Um, it's red glazed smooth stuff. Um, it came from north, north Africa. That's where it came from and was distributed around the empire. Right. And it's, I mean, there are other Roman Potter taps, but Sam and where he is Roman definitive, um, And so it would've been, it was a large bowl, probably, you know, like a fruit bowl, mixing bowl kind size, mostly in intact.

We must have had about 80, 90% of it. It was broken of course, but you know, big pieces. Right. And all around the outside, there was a, a little relief of human Tetris, effectively, just various people doing various things in various positions. So yeah, some, some, uh, human athletics going on. I mean, yeah. I mean the Romans bit gymnastics, the Romans were shy when it came to stuff like that.

They're quite happy to. No, that is true. That is one thing it's true. In fact, it reminds me of a hilarious story. I was in, oh, blow me. Let me think. Um, might have been Luxor in Egypt and, um, we were headed towards the airport. I just done an old cruise from Lux, uh, from a Swan. Was it Luxor? No, it was Awan down to Lux and, um, they were like, oh, do you wanna stop off at the gift shop?

Fine. Why not? Bring back a few bits walked in, walking around this, that, and the other. And they've got some items that glow in the dark. So I was like, all right, fine. So he was like, have a look at this. So he killed the lights and you see all this stuff glowing. I thought, oh, this is cool. And I looked and I went and my mum went, oh my God.

And then she started like cursing in Arabic and I'm going, what the Hells way are you in? She went look up there and there's like a, I think there's a God of fertility. Who's basically got the massive penis, right? Yeah. This's as big as his entire body. Right. If it, if he got excited, it it'd be dead. As simple as that,  all of those, there must have been about a hundred of them on this wall.

Glowing. Imagine how intimidating that's like, what's that. And the bloke on account is dying and laughing. He was like, what? We're really basing it off. What was found. And I went, can you imagine the bloke who found that it's. I got it all. Oh, oh no, no,  wash it, but yeah, that was, that was a hilarious, they call bell statues, a bell fertility statue.

I think I've seen them. I think so. Yeah. I think they're quite common in Turkey. I've never been too Egypt myself, but I've been to Turkey a few times. I think they're quite common there as well. Oh, I need to take you out there, mate. Oh, I'd love to, I'd love to go. I'll get you out there. A friend of mine was asking last night actually about whether I'd I'd ever been.

And um, and I haven't, but my family have, and the first year that they went, right. When I decided that I was like, I'm not going on holiday with my parents. I'm gonna stay at home and have some parties. And what have you, um, they went, they didn't actually go to Egypt. I think they went to Cyprus, but they called me up while they were out there and going, oh, we're going on a trip to Egypt for a couple of days.

I was like, oh, great. If I'd known you were doing that, then I'd come with, but I thought it was just gonna be two weeks by the pool and I weren't that bothered. So yeah, sure. I missed that opportunity, but no, there's, there's the new museum they've just built is. Staggeringly huge. I think it's like, I think someone said it's either twice or three times the size of the natural history museum.

Like, it's just insane how big this thing is. And I remember they were moving. Um, I think they were moving the Kings and Queens along from the existing museum into the new one and like the amount of security and like these particular cars that they had made. So they put like the, um, you know, the cartoons inside mm-hmm  and they were all like pressurized and stuff.

And they had these like specific cars built that had like the best suspension, like ever that they weren't bouncing around. So it was like the biggest thing. And then like televised the entire thing, which was, it was both brilliant and incredibly boring because there was just, there was just these cars.

Right. You're seeing it. It's all been dressed as so, but it's nothing else going on. You going, I'm just, it was like watching me playing Euro track. It's like, there's not much going on. Just, I'm just delivering stuff. But obviously the car game they've got is a lot more impressive than what I would've been.

So, uh, but yeah, it's, again, history's just such a, a fascinating aspect, which, which comes onto something else. So obviously you being a, a huge games player yourself, uh, watch you play many of a game. Here's an interesting one for you, cuz I've seen you play a lot of the assessing creed games. Mm-hmm  and obviously you've got a wealth of knowledge of, of history.

Well, is there a lot of, a lot of aspects to what they portray in the games actually true or are they dramatizing a lot of it? Oh, I mean, this is difficult one because this is the, you're an archeologist. So you must know everything there is to know about history.  no. Sure. Um, I mean, I guess they've done their research.

Um, And, you know, my grasp of various things. I mean, Victorian London looks quite accurate in the, uh, whichever one that is syndicate. Um, yeah, so they've done a reasonable, I mean, the, the, the most reason, one that, that, you know, came out that I've been playing Val Halla is like, backings didn't look like that.

That's, that's the, you know, the TV series, backings that look, everybody likes and I dig as well, to be honest. Yeah. But the actual reality of backings sort of culture and weapons and armor and stuff, they, there was, there wasn't as much Wolf skin and, you know, braids and head tattoos, I think, as in reality as people, um, people think, um, that's not say there wasn't any.

We've we've certainly sort of pushed that image more into culture than is perhaps actually the case in pre in actual history. Um, mm. I mean, I, you know, I think they've done and that, to be honest, I think that's okay if it, if it encourages people to look into it a little bit more by presenting them with the glamorous stuff and it encourages people to go and learn.

That's cool. I think that's fine. Um, it's when people start spouting that, that's how it actually was and not, yeah. You know, being ignorant of the reality, then it's well, a problem. Um, but yeah, you know, it's, I think they've done a reasonable job. What I was, what I was impressed with. Um, cuz I've never really done it in any of the other games, but with Valhalla because there's a portion, good portion of it set in England.

I went to try and find historical sites in, right. Um, In the game and there are quite a lot of them and they are actual, some of them have got, you know, are collectable to go and get and stuff. So there's a reason to visit 'em in most cases. Right. But I went to, I went to the in-game Stonehenge, which is a little bit on the small side in terms of the height of the stones, but the layout of, of it and everything is pretty accurate.

Um, what I was more excited about, um, is they replicated the King's barrels that are across the road. There's a bunch of bronze age, burial mans across the road from stone that I, you know, maybe people don't know about as much because Stonehenge is obviously the focus. Right. Um, but those barrels have been recreated in the game and they, they are there.

So I was, I was really excited about that. Um, that, I mean, I look, cuz I know, I do know that landscape quite well, having worked there and, and things, um, And it, and the landscape being the focus of the project I was working on. Um, so I went and had a look and there's not everything there, but I was quite impressed to see that they had, they had recreated certain, at least certain parts of the landscape as, as accurately as they could.

And it, cause I didn't have to say it's not like certainly not a well known site, like stone hinges, even though it's literally across the road. But, um, yeah, it was cool to say that they they'd put that in. Um, it's I always, uh, archeology and gaming. I always have a bit of a full ramp about it because it seems to pop up more, quite a lot.

I don't know why, but some MPCL mention that they're an archeologist than I just go off on. We got, we can't have a game and generally it just means go on, find a shiny thing, give it to the archeologist. It's true. Actually, I think, um, is it the uncharted games? I think have a lot of like, oh, I'm an archeologist and I can't remember.

I mean, the whole of the charge games for the most part are kind of obviously all fiction. But I remember there was one particular section and I remember like Reddit went absolutely ballistic about like the inconsistencies in what was stated versus the truth. And I was like, but if the entire thing's fiction, can they bend the rules, they probably can, but should they probably not.

So, you know, there's, there's, there's a, there's a, a pro and a con to doing that, but, um, yeah, it's, it's fascinating to see that more games are starting to be a bit more wise to, you know, portraying real life. I mean, I think the I've forgotten the name of it now, the assessing creed one that's based in Egypt.

Um, origins, I think there was, I don't, I dunno if it's, if it's got an entire DLC or whether it comes with the game, but there's an entire section where apparently there. So much history that's been placed into it, and it's all based on real facts. And you can literally just sit there for hours, just flicking through all of this media and looking at artifacts.

And I was like, that's, that's really cool that they've gone to that extent. Yeah. That's, that's something that they've done with the last few assassin screen games. Um, they've added, it's usually one of the last updates that they've done with them, where they've added, um, like a historical tour mode. So you can go around and actually it will give you little popups and things.

Um, and I know I've looked at the one for Odyssey, the ancient Greek one. I think the one for Val Halla drops quite soon. Um, but yeah, you're right. I think they, they did a. Um, they did go that sort of extra mile with, um, it goes back to what you were saying is how accurate it is. Well, I think they've gone to the trouble to say, well, actually look here here is how accurate it is or not accurate as the case may be.

They've actually gone to the trouble themselves to sort of say, well, you know, we've done this for the game, but actually this is more the reality of it. Um, and I think that's, that's cool that you can navigate it and, and see it. Um, and I'm talking about sort of archeology and gaming and archeology and games.

I'm waiting for a simulator. I want to see an actual, proper archeology simulator, which I was thinking would be the most boring thing ever, but considering the popularity of power wash simulator and grass cutting simulator at the minute, maybe there's space for these more mundane things. And I would actually like to see people.

Or let people get the opportunity to see the reality of an archeological excavation. Yeah. Because I've never once had a gun or blown anything up or  punched a Nat say, although most, you know, quite a few Digger drivers tend to lean a little bit more towards the right wing. Um,  no offense to anybody out there that works in construction, but I've met some characters, shall we say I'm sure.

I'm sure. But, um, yeah. I mean, funny enough, you just said that. And the first thing that came to mind was like that in VR, I think would be a really cool experience. Um, I mean, with things like Oculus quest, you've got like really good finger tracking, like incredible finger tracking. I think. What did I see the other day?

Um, it was something that was requiring finger tracking. I mean, there was a couple of games that I've seen where. I think there's one game called cubism where it's essentially like, imagine Teris, but in the air, okay. You kind of pick up your pieces and build up like a square. So it's all gotta fit in correctly.

And it's incredible how amazing that tech has worked. I mean, I guess the, the holy GRA, as it were, would be maybe haptic gloves that you would then use to kind of feel, you know, you get that feeling that touch in your hands, but yeah, that type of game, like a historical game, you know, maybe someone's gonna copyright this, but maybe the way it works is you pick like an area like Stonehenge, you are at Stonehenge, you're exploring it, you are learning about it.

And then the idea is to do a dig, to discover something mm-hmm . So, I mean that in VR, I think would work really well. Cause you'd get totally immersed in seeing, you know, the site yeah. Of where you are, the historical site and then doing the job. That's a good idea. Go, go and talk to someone about that. Cuz that that would work really well.

I think as a VR game, there was, there was somebody that was not necessarily a VR, but there was somebody that was working on, um, I was talking to 'em on Twitter for, it was a while ago now, but I was talking to 'em on Twitter briefly. They were working on, um, an archeology simulation game. It was the same people behind, but the barrel hill game, um, there's a couple of other little, little tats that they did that have kind of have an archeology stroke, horror link to them.

Um, and they were, yeah, they were talking about, in fact, they ended up sending me a couple of screenshots of things that they were working on and it kind of fell off the radar. So I don't know, you know, if maybe COVID got in the way and, and things had to be put on hold, but, um, I've always got my eye out for something because I would, uh, I would like to, I bet I'd like to stream it.

You know, I think there's a good hook there. Archeologists players, archeology simulator, and I can shout about it and get angry and pretend that I'm at work. But, um, well, that's, that's a brilliant segue. Um, cuz I mean obviously you do Twitch streaming matters myself. How did you fall into Twitch streaming?

Is there a particular reason why you do it? Is it escapism? Um, the, the, the, the primary reason was to make some gaming friends, quite honestly. Um, I've got, I had a couple, I've got a couple of friends that we, we started. I mean, I've always say I've always been into gaming. Um, but I, I just kind one day and I've tried various hobbies as well over, over the years and never really got into anything.

We all have  but it kind of just, I've always played games. Right. And I sort of thought, well, hang on a minute, you know, I've tried learning instruments and fishing and God knows what else and never really stuck with it, but I've always gained. So why don't I put more effort into that? And just accept that that's actually my hobby and what I do.

Um, and there's a couple of my mates that we play stuff with, but with busy schedules, they just are never really, we never really managed to play as often as I'd like to. So, and I was sitting on this stack of multiplayer games that I really wanted to get into, but just didn't really have anybody to play with.

So I thought, right, we'll do it. We'll, we'll have a look and I heard a Twitch, um, but I never really looked into it. So I thought, well, I'll, I'll watch a few streams, see what it's all about and then maybe give it a go. So it kind of just went from there really. Um, I thought, well, you know, it'd be a good, it'd be a good way set.

I had a Twitter account previously and I'd shut it down. I set up a new Twitter account with the sole focus of it being linked to. Doings on Twitch. And I thought this might be a good way to meet some fellow gamers that will have time and will want to play games and, you know, make a few gaming buddies.

So that was kind of the, uh, sure. The reason for, for starting it and, and still is to be honest, I'm not, I'm not gonna lie. It's, it's good. Fun, but it is, it is a hobby. I, I'm not, I don't have any aspirations to be, you know, the number one streamer or making it, my living or anything like that. I mean, I'm not gonna turn it down if it did happen to go that way, but I'm quite happy to just do it for the laugh of it.

And just to sure, hang out with people and chat to people. Yeah. It's it's, it's good. Fun. So that's, yeah, that's kind of the, the reason behind it and the reason why I still do it. And, uh, yeah. I mean, things have taken a little bit of a backseat cause of the work situation at the minute, I'm looking forward to this project ending and being able to get back doing things a little bit more regularly, but, uh, yeah, it's, it's good.

Funs, just, you know, say it, we want to, otherwise there's a bunch of people that won't have, uh, absolutely. You know, some, you know, met some really good friends to it. Um, and yeah, it's, you know, I think it's, it's been a great, it's been a great thing really, and I'm happy to have made that decision to start doing it and, and kept up with it.

Yeah. It's, it's always fascinating how people will fall into switch. Um, I think from when I started, which was streaming for nine months to no one, which was a fun experience, I think it's become, it's become a stable now and it's almost become, as you said, like a little community in itself. Mm-hmm  so. It's very difficult to not find either friends or someone of a, a mutual mindset or something.

That's got an interest in a particular game or genre or something like that. So I, I think now, you know, I think there was a period maybe where having this particular interest in something was either outcasted or, um, very difficult to find, um, anywhere of a similar interest. Sure. But I think now the world's become a lot closer and you know, there there's so much availability, uh, to find communities now.

And I think Twitch is kind of that thing that kind of, I dunno, brings everyone together. Um, and you know, I mean, I've, I've been in your streams many, many a time and, uh, you know, it's, it's always a pleasure to, to watch you play the games cuz as you said, especially if you're playing something like Val Halle, you know, you'll be like, oh, I know what that's about.

Mm-hmm  and then you kind of, you know, explain based on your job and that's always nice cuz it's not just listing about the game it's it's obviously you're bringing a little bit of what you do in your day job in as well, which just sounds a whole different. Flavor. And it's nice to, to learn as you, as you're watching as well, which I think is a nice space.

And, uh, obviously you do enjoy a bit of reading and I've tendered a couple of your Christmas reading sessions. Yes. Which are great. I wanna back do set that up again. In fact, I'm, I'm aware I still actually need to finish 20,000 leagues under the sea that I've only got halfway through that and I've not I'm to knock it on the edge, but yeah, no, that was again, I just, just fancy doing something different and, um, a lot of people, cause I do my silly little videos on Twitch and stuff and uh, on Twitter and um, just, you know, messing around whinging about my day or whatever it is I'm up to.

And uh, so many people said to me like, oh, your voice, your voice is great. And I've, I've never really, is it? I mean, I dunno, I've never really thought about it. Um, but I thought, well, maybe that'd be something different as well. Cause you there's, you know, obviously everybody's playing games on there.

There's people doing music stuff and, and what have you. And I'm sure there are people out there reading, but it's not a big thing. Um, And I enjoy it and I got there's, uh, and I thought with, um, copyright and stuff, it's kind of limited on what you can read, but I've not read a lot of the classics. So I thought like I did the Dracula read through, I'd never read Dracula before I thought it's a good excuse to read it.

Um, so yeah, I just thought it was something a little bit different. Um, nice to just tell people a story and yeah, it's been, it's been popular for a lot of people have been very complimentary about it. So yeah. I'm gonna gonna try and get back on and bring that back at some point. Definitely. It's got a very, um, what's the word?

A very innocent aspect to it, cuz it, it actually took me back to when I was at primary school, you know, you'd have the teacher read a book to you to sit there and listening and, and the reason why that aspect is quite nice is, you know, we live in a world at the moment where everything's just so in your face, right?

I mean, Netflix is a click away. YouTube is a click away, but there's something about. Reading. And especially if you are listening to someone reading, you still have to use your creativity in your mind to kind of visualize stuff. And that's why I, I always said it, it was great to, to listen to you reading it.

Cuz a, I agree with everyone, you do have an amazing voice, but, um, it's, it's, it's great cuz it, it, it reignites your brain a little bit, you know, and I think we all become a little bit numb to, to using our brains, to be creative, to, to build a, a picture in our mind and interpretate the story, how our minds want mm-hmm  and I think that's why it's a really nice thing to listen to someone reading.

Cuz as I said, it took me straight back to school. Yeah. Um, and having to use your mind to, to, to build that creative mm-hmm  story and it's, and it's a really nice thing to do as well. And I think the one you did around Christmas was fantastic. Um, you know, Christmas TV is, uh, a bit NAF to say in the UK, especially in the last few years.

So to have. That to listen to, um, especially after the year that we had as well with, with 20, 20 mm-hmm  I dunno why it, it was a very humbling experience to sit there and just listen to a story. And it was, uh, it was, it was a real pleasure. So it'd be great to, uh, to have that back. Yeah, no, I'm definitely, definitely getting, get it back.

Like I say, as soon as the work situation changes and, and I'm home a bit more and I can, uh, I can, I'm not trying to squeeze at the minute. I'm kind of trying to squeeze everything I wanna do into, into weekends rather than I branch things out during the week. Um, but yeah, no, that the Christmas one I did, I did very much enjoy that.

It was nice and cozy. And I think I created the atmosphere exactly what I wanted to create, which was just, yeah, like a got old fashioned story time, sat around the fire. Um, might have to make that a, a regular Christmas Eve. Story time with half troll.  no honest, honestly, for, for anyone who hadn't seen it, who's listening to this or, or watching this, it really is a fantastic thing.

And, um, as I said, it was, it was a very, it was a very humbling experience and, um, there's something just very right about it. You know, there was no, you know, the thing is with Twitch is I think there's a lot of ego. There's a lot of overinflation, you know, there's just a, there's just a lot of stuff going on, but just bringing it back down to just reading a story, it's just, it's just something very human about that.

Yeah, that was nice. I mean, it wasn't, um, I mean, I always, you know, and I'm sure everybody does, but I always just try and be myself, but I guess there's always a little bit more of a performance aspect to it when you're streaming, you want to be, you know, you're conscious of the fact that you're trying to be entertaining.

Um sure. Or you maybe force things a little bit here and there, but yeah, with the reading, it is well, a apart from. Intonation of characters and things like that to try and sort of sell the story. There's not much of a performance element. I am literally just reading the book. So yeah, it was, uh, it was kind of relaxing for me as much as, you know, the, hopefully the viewers, which was, as I said, story time, it was supposed to be a relaxing experience, but yeah, it was nice to just be doing something and be streaming, but not sort of feel that it has to be the hype hype hype.

Yeah. Here we go. Yeah. Sort of, um, mentality. It was, it was cool. There you go. You might have just, uh, opened up yourself a new, uh, a new place on Netflix now be Aiden's little corner, just reads books. That'd be amazing. The stuff, the stars. So many. Have you got? Oh, that's serious. Yeah, exactly. Exactly. I love that.

Um, so you've got any feature plans or projects or anything that you wanna talk about? Um, a couple of things in the pipeline, um, I don't want to give too much away. Not because it's a huge secret, but because I know what I'm like, and I may, may well all go wrong and I decided to ack it off. Um, but I've been playing over this last year.

Um, I've, I've started playing D and D um, with a bunch of people that I've met through Twitter and, and Twitch and, and what have you. Um, and nice. It's something I've always wanted to get. I've always been a big fantasy fan. Um, like calling the barbarians, one of my favorite movies, characters, um, anything with swords and dragons and I'm all over it.

Um, and DND was something that I always wanted to get into. So when this opportunity to came up to play, I grabbed all of it and I've been absolutely loving it. And that's kind of led me down onto this avenue of, um, painting figures, again, painting, miniatures, which I did as a teenager for a while. So I've kind of, I've been trying to get back into doing that and making little bits of scenery and things.

So I'm kind of thinking that maybe we might do some stuff for YouTube, where I make things and paint things nice. Um, I've also. And I also kind of got a couple of ideas where I'm met tight into streaming play some RPGs, but as my D and D character with some interaction from the audience, um, in terms of what we do, what we go, you know, which missions we take.

Yeah, sure. How we react. Um, so yeah, just sort of try and bring the mean, not that we're playing it on a tabletop, cause we do it all online, but playing, bring the tabletop gaming into the, into the video gaming side of things. And uh, so I have a few ideas, few ideas that I'm kicking around at the minute is, as I say, the main thing stopping me at the minute is, has just been a little bit time poor, but, um, yeah, watch this space and remind me if nothing materializes, cuz maybe I'm just being lazy.

I, I will, I will give you a swift kick up the backside. So yeah, but it's funny, you mentioned D and D because, um, it's funny cuz there, there must have been a, well, in my mind, I think there was a period where B and D kind of, I dunno, fell by the wayside. I dunno if it was because. The avenue or the introduction of online gaming and stuff kind of pushed it out the way, but there is this huge resurgence of D oh yeah.

Massive and, and only, oh, when was it? It must have been about either six months or a little bit more than that. There's actually a D and D style VR game that I saw you kind of, you're all kind of looking down at this. Well, it almost looks like you're looking down at a tabletop. It looks, looks very nicer than just someone's tabletop.

And then you've kind of got one person who's like a dungeon master that controls everything and then everyone else kind of does stuff. And I thought, what a bloody clever idea that is. Um, and apparently it's really good. I've not tried it myself, but, um, yeah, much like yourself D and D's always been that, that thing that sat at the back of my mind tickling away at something.

So at some point I may have to just dive in both feet and see mm-hmm . So, uh, if you need someone. Oh, I will, I will, I will talk to our, uh, our game master our dungeon master, uh, morally corrupt. He's very, uh, keen on getting as many people involved, um, in playing, bringing new plays into the game. So yeah, I'm, I'm sure he'll be, he'll be happy to have you.

Um, and he's doing fantastic work at the minute with his, his game that he's running for is, is gone above and beyond, and essentially created a hugely interlinked world. So, you know, with the idea that our one part's actions on their game might affect our game when we play and something else. Wow. And yeah, he, he's, he's really, really putting a huge amount of effort and very grateful.

Um, cuz yeah, I've been having a lot of fun with it. I said I'm still kind of field feel like I'm still kind of learning it. Um, but it's yeah, it's been great fun to actually finally play something that I've wanted to play for years really. And just not, not really had the opportunity. So. Yeah, sure. If you're interested that I'm sure you're about to get in.

No, no, that'd be great. It's funny cuz like I said, D and D for, I think I first got exposed to it when I was at college and it was funny cuz whenever someone said D and D there would almost be like this stiff upper lip attitude to it. It was like, oh you go and play that thing. It's like, I'm over here playing risk.

And it's like, yeah, if you ever played risk, it goes on for like 10,000 days. Like I'm not interested yet, but it's just, but you know, unless you're gonna like batter everyone and team up and just destroy everyone it's boring. But yeah, it it's, it's been crazy to see this resurgence of D and as you said, there is this, I guess, great area where mixing the online world with, you know, kind of the tabletop gaming is, is, has been attempted a few times and it hasn't, hasn't worked just yet.

And I think as you said, if somebody nails it, I can see that just skyrocket. Yeah, yeah. Really quickly. Um, yeah, I think someone tried to attempt to do, um, well, slightly off tangent, they tried to resurrect, uh, nightmare, the TV show. Mm. They tried to, they tried to do that. I love a digital way and it just, it just didn't work.

I just think there was something about the delivery that just wasn't, wasn't quite right. And I just think if you take some of those iconic, similar games and, and D and D obviously, and you apply them in a way that, I mean, especially with, Twitch's got a lot more interactivity features now than it ever has.

Mm-hmm  I think there's just, there's just a way that you can massively make that work. Um, so yeah, I'm, I'm very excited to see that. And as I said, D and D has always been that thing that's itched in the back of my mind. So it would be nice to actually jump in now and, and see what it's. Yeah, it's good fun.

I say, it's, it's, you know, there's the social side of it. There's the game itself, which, you know, you strip it down to its essentials. It's, it's rolling dice and hoping for a lucky role, but yeah. Then you get to, you play a character sort of role play inside of it and, you know, put on a silly voice maybe, whereas, and like the goal it's, it's good, fun.

And you know, the, the it's very free. The, the, you know, we have, um, it's something that I'm trying to sort of get out or get into my head really when we do play is that I can essentially do what I want or at least attempt to do what I want. Um, so it's, it's very much a, a sandbox game, I suppose, in that, uh, to use a, to use a gaming term in that respect, because yeah, you can decide to, you know, do you open the door?

Do you kick the door in? Do you, you know, Do you fight this gobbling? Do you try and seduce it? Do you try and reason with things? It's, you know, you've got a lot of freedom and a lot of creativity and it's, it's, it's very interesting. We played game last night, actually. And it was a version of, um, a one shot that we'd done a few months back.

And when we played it originally, we went in and we, we basically went down the combat side and just, you know, killed all the enemies and saved the day. That way. Whereas last night, we didn't, we went entirely the opposite route with the full intention of just being diplomatic and basically came to a peaceable solution and sort of won the game that way.

Um, so that was interesting because that's not how I play games. Generally. I like the fighting and the action. Yeah. I was gonna say all guns, blazer. That should, yeah.  if anybody's ever seen me try and attempt to stealth game they'll know that it's not really, I'm the same. I'm not into steal. I just, no, no, exactly.

That's, that's why I tried to stay away from the splint cell games. Cause I was like, what? I got a Dodge around this. Can I just shoot 'em in the head? That's what this is about. Oh no, I've been caught. Did this entire level again. Damn. Yeah. I, yeah, DND DND is definitely something I wanna get into. And I think the important part there is having a very good dungeon master.

I think that makes a massive difference to the. I'd say, so I'd say so. And like I say, I'm talking from a, you know, fairly, um, novice point of view, but yeah. Um, I'd say Jake's been great with us. Um, cuz he, he basically took a bunch of nos that kind of fancy having a game and uh, and has got us, um, you know, sort of all really into it and yeah, they put in a lot of work, you know, be, be, uh, you know, tossa county, a DM cause they, they do, they put in a lot of work to, to put on these games.

Um, and it's uh, yeah, it's been a great experience. It has in some, some regards and in fact, I, I I'm moving, I move my stream last night to play D and D that's how much I'm enjoying it at the minute there we. That's commitment. I like that right before we wrap up. Is there anything you wanna promote, talk about the floor is yours.

Oh, well, you know, if you're that way inclined, it'd be lovely to have you in a stream sometimes. So I twitched up TV for slash eight and half troll and, uh, catch up with me shenanigans and doings and terrible jocks on, uh, Twitter at eight and half troll. There you go. And all the details for Aiden will be in description of whatever you are listening to, or, uh, watching this on.

Uh, but yeah, it's been a pleasure. I think we've just hit the air oven. We have look at that spot on, on an hour, look at that. Lovely, lovely. Um, but Aiden, it's been a pleasure. Um, again, I can only apologize that we haven't done this sooner. Ah, sorry, man. But it has been, but it's been wonderful. Um, haven't you as a guest, I've learned, already learn so much.

It's been great short, very near future. I'm sure. In the very near future, I will be, uh, Picking your brains, a bit more about archeology and uh, some cool stuff you find. And now I'm gonna keep an eye on every, any TV channel. I see. That's got like an archeological dig. I gonna be like, is that aid didn't then  maybe I have to phone your Moe up bit.

Is that Aiden  she will not. Um, they will, I will. I'll yes. Digging for Britain came out and filmed us this year on the project that I'm currently on. So I don't know when it's gonna wear, but I will very likely be on TV, doing my work, doing my job in the near future. I'll I'll I'll post it. I'm too much of a job shot to keep these things quiet.

It'll be all over. It'll be all over Twitter. When I know, look at me, look at me, look at me.  but no, it's been great. Absolutely fantastic. I've really enjoyed it. Thank you for having me, Dean. It's been, uh, good. I'm glad fun. You've had fun. Good days, right? Anyway, stay on the line, Aiden, but uh, for me, me machine Dean, thank you all very, very much.

Uh, make sure you go and live a positive review this podcast, cuz obviously Aiden is awesome. Probably. Probably got a better voice than I have, but anyway,  make sure you subscribe as well. And if you watch your just on YouTube, give it a big thumbs up and comment down below. If you have discovered anything interest in your back garden, maybe Aiden needs to come over and inspect your, uh, I dunno, rabbits foot or something that you've seen.

Um, but anyway, I guess we'll find out, but anyway, for me, maybe she Dean, thank you all very, very much. And, uh, Aiden, I speak to you in a moment. Bye.

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