My favourite videogame podcasts: Radio Free Nintendo

Let’s get ready to rumble! Or let’s not, as I’ve already determined the winner of the gaming podcast crown of all times. It’s the Very Very Gaming Show- er, no. It’s not that.

radio free nintendo logo

Actually, my favourite gaming podcast is Radio Free Nintendo. As well as my favourite, RFN is easily the longest running podcast I listen to – rapidly approaching its 500th episode as of writing!

What is the show about? As the name suggests, Radio Free Nintendo is a podcast primarily about Nintendo. Hosted on the Nintendo fansite Nintendo World Report, RFN started way back in 2006. During those first few years when I discovered the podcast, the show was a fairly unprofessional affair – no regular schedule or regular line-up to be seen. But starting in 2008, the podcast was rebooted with an all-new four man cast and a fixed weekly schedule. Since then, the show has remained incredibly consistent with its schedule, and only two small changes in the cast members over the ensuing eight years. It’s a Skype-based podcast which means a lot of editing and love goes into every episode, which are about two hours in length. Finally, while the show is Nintendo-focused as the name suggests, the show also covers non-Nintendo games and topics, with discussions of new and old games alike, and the gaming industry at large.

Why I recommend it: I have had such a strong relationship with this show over the past nine years (and it is a relationship when you listen to the same few people talking for so many hours, trust me) I don’t even know where to start with summarising my feelings in a few sentences. Yes, the chemistry between the regular crew is stellar and frequently hilarious. Yes, the analysis of individual games as well as the gaming industry is insightful. Yes, the crew is highly knowledgeable about videogames past and present, and not just those on Nintendo systems. Yes, this podcast was the reason I wanted to start my own gaming podcast. And yes, it feels like RFN has always been around. It’s been in my ears through the good times and bad times over the years, and I don’t have a bad word to say about it!

This video below contains one of my favourite ever moments from the show, from an episode in 2008. It’s a one-off skit, a remarkably accurate parody of Disaster: Day of Crisis on the Wii. I say accurate because nothing in this work of satire would be out of place in the game, that’s how absurd it is. “EAT MY BALLISTICS!!!” says hello.

Where a newcomer might start: With nearly 500 episodes there are far too many greats to make any quick or easy recommendations for an entry point, sorry. Anyone interested in learning more about the show would do well to check out the RFN thread over on the NeoGAF forums, which lists a number of “significant” episodes that are well worth a listen. Otherwise, why not try a new episode?


There’s my recommendation, hope you enjoyed it! I shall return soon with follow-ups, recommending further sterling gaming podcasts. If you have any recommendations of your own let me know below – I’m always on the look out for a new ‘cast to love.

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9 comments

  1. Mr. Panda

    Excellent choice and great taste! Radio Free Nintendo has always been my favorite podcast as well, gaming or otherwise. I just love the cast’s chemistry and their depth of knowledge of the gaming industry. It always starts off the week strong! I love NWR, the website, in general too!

    • veryverygaming

      Awesome, was not expecting to come across a fellow fan when writing this post! I read NWR from time to time too but RFN is easily my favourite thing about the site. Out of curiosity, do you have a favourite cast member? And how long have you been listening to the show? Greg would have to be my fave, predictable I know!

      • Mr. Panda

        I’ve been listening since 2008, so not exactly when it started, but early on while the main cast included Jonny. Of course, I enjoy Greg as well, and was sad when he left and ecstatic when he came back. I am a big NWR fan and also listen to their other podcasts including Radio Trivia, another of my favorites. Glad to see a fellow listener!

        • veryverygaming

          That’s awesome, a long-time listener then for sure! I must’ve started listening some time in 2007, maybe even 2006 before the reboot. It wasn’t the best show back then and I almost stopped listening, but not long after Jonny becoming host and the new crew I was extremely glad I’d stuck around!

          Also – I hope you don’t mind me asking so many questions, I’m just curious because I don’t know anyone else who listens to the show! – do you ever send emails to the show? I’ve only sent in questions and things a handful of times over the years but it’s usually a lot of fun when they respond.

          I enjoy Radio Trivia too, and there’s another podcast you might like called Super Marcato Bros that’s also really good on game music (I’ve just spoiled a future post but nevermind!).

          • Mr. Panda

            I have never sent the email to the show, but I am a patron of their Patreon, and have asked questions for their patron-exclusive podcasts. It’s awesome that you send emails to RFN though. One of my favorite parts of each podcast is hearing their intelligent responses to game-industry related questions. Radio Trivia is great, and I do listen to Connectivity as well, though they seem to change the format for that more often. I’ve never heard of Super Marcato Bros. but I might need to check it out. I enjoy video-game music podcasts, and the radio trivia podcast is actually what got me interested in podcasts in general!

  2. Matt

    I don’t have the habit of listening to podcasts (I guess music takes way too much of my “listening time”), but this one sounds excellent.

    • veryverygaming

      I listen to too many podcasts for my own good but like Mr Panda this is my favourite, regardless of gaming or non-gaming, and it has been for many years. I’m sure you won’t regret checking this one out given its main subject matter!

    • veryverygaming

      Nothing beats a good podcast when doing the household chores, in my books! They’re also handy for certain games… an RPG that involves grinding or any kind of relatively mindless gameplay.

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