INSIDERS

A CONVERSATION WITH 3 IN-GAME DJs

FROM SECRET WORLD LEGENDS

DJ shows are one of the most popular events for role-players in many games. Secret World Legends is no exception. We asked three players whose characters host in-game shows to answer a few questions about themselves and what they do. 

the interview

What are 3 favorite games you play?

Drina: Secret World Legends, the Division sometimes, and Farmville. Tropic Escape on my phone! I’m not a huge gamer, and I’m a role-player first.
Malak: SWL, Modded Minecraft, Torchlight 2
Asha: Secret World Legends, Elder Scrolls Online, Stellaris

What games do you DJ in?

Drina: Secret World Legends
Malak: Secret World Legends
Asha: Secret World Legends and Star Wars: The Old Republic

Tell us about your shows. What are they called? When are they?

Drina: #PlayAnything is Drina’s eclectic show that used to be on Thursday nights at 10 PM ET, but it’s on hiatus while I deal with IRL stuff. The music ranges from pop, 80s new wave, R&B, hip hop, to modern electronic, and more. I did a lot of one-off theme shows as well, and even had a country music night. The shows were done in Ealdwic Park. They often featured lots of silliness, including doing Mad Libs with the audience and reading badly written porn on air. Drina is also involved in the World Battle Federation as an announcer for their once-a-month events, and is a personality on the once-in-a-blue-moon Happy Tentacle Radio talk show called “REDACTED.”
 
Malak: The Rift, Fridays @ 1830 Eastern, Too Damn Early, Occasional Sundays 0600 EST.  The Rift is my main show and it’s whatever I feel like that week.  Sometimes themed shows, most times a mixture of rock, funk, metal, and hip hop.
Asha: The Rise is a show in SWL and is mostly EDM. That's on Sundays 8pm EST.  I also have another show called DJ Asha Freaks the Work Week, which is in SWTOR on Thursdays at 9pm Eastern.

What sort of equipment or setup do you use for your shows?

Drina: I use my laptop and don’t actually use the fancy programs & DJ gear my fellow DJs do. I actually use an old version of Winamp. Most DJs use Traktor or a similar program to be able to live mix, but I found for me it ended up taking away from the show antics, so I am mostly a “jukebox DJ.”
Malak: My current rig is pretty simple.  A decent Kraken Chroma headset and SAM Broadcaster.  I used to have a mixer board but I haven’t had a need for it since I came back.
Asha: I use a virtual DJ8, a Gemini Slate controller, and a LESHP PBR microphone.

When did you decide to become a DJ and why?

Drina: Several years ago, I was friends with DJs and others affiliated with a group called Gridstream. One of their main DJs talked me into it because he thought I’d be fun on air.
Malak: I started DJ'ing back in 2010.  Doc Quantum ran a station over in Champions Online. I started DJ’ing for him because he asked me to. There wasn’t really any big reason behind why I started other than I wanted to give it a shot.
Asha: I began after hearing another DJ that did shows in SWTOR.  I wanted to learn and pursue it as a hobby.

What are the best and worst things about DJ'ing?

Drina: The best thing about DJ'ing is the connection to the audience and being able to share something with them. My shows have a lot of inside jokes and antics that have been cultivated over time. What is the worst thing about it? No listeners! Every now and again, you go to do a show and everybody else’s life stuff has gotten in the way. You have no audience or a very tiny audience and it definitely takes away from the show for me. It’s easy to feel inferior or inadequate on nights like that, because I have a lot of anxiety, and I’d have to remind myself over and over that people have lives and things come up. Other than that, for me, trimming playlists. I’d start adding music for a show and then realize I had six hours of songs and have to trim them back to three. 
 
Malak: Having a great time with the listeners and turning people on to new music, or being turned on to new music from requests or just conversations at the shows. Not so much anymore, but the trolls were the worst back in the old days.  The technical issues are sometimes bad. SAM is a fickle overlord.
Asha: Getting to share music and make people happy is the best part. The worst thing about it? When people request the same song every show. 

How has being an in-game DJ affected your OOC life?

Drina: Not much, aside from having to plan around ingame events. It’s also led to me listening to other music I’ve been directed to by other RPers and other DJs.
Malak: Probably not in the way that you’d think! I was actually stalked out of another game by a listener.  We were in a RP relationship and she ended up calling my cell phone. I’d never given her any personal information. She confessed her love for me and it actually ran me out of the game. 
Asha: I have been able to take it out-of-game, and now DJ for live events. I've done bachelorette parties, a couple of openers for bands, and one local festival. I've only been doing this for a year so I'm just feeling my way as I learn.

Any advice for someone thinking about becoming a DJ in a game?

Drina: Be prepared to commit a lot of time to sets each week, use the best quality files available, and know that there will be off shows and off weeks. Also, be prepared to sound dumb on air sometimes!
Malak: Always be looking for new music.  It’s really easy to get locked into your own collection; but listen to the radio, talk about music with people, go down to your local music stores and find something new.  Also, be flexible. Some of the most fun that I have at shows is where I end up tossing out three quarters of my set list because some conversation with listeners led down a path and I wanted to follow it as far as I could.  
Asha: Don’t steal music from YouTube.  Audio quality is important. Learn your craft.  Don’t be afraid to make mistakes! The audience will not notice most of them!

Any in-game DJs out there that you think people ought to check out?

Drina: I only know SWL DJs. Damian Atavez. DJ Chemic. DJ Malek. Radio Free Gaia and Club Phoenix have some great DJs. And obviously I have a lot of love for all of HTR’s DJs as well.
Malak: I would highly recommend Lucid and Jarred from RFG.  But I’m partial to industrial and punk so I might be a bit biased!
Asha: I could probably name a dozen and leave someone out. It’s a great community, unlike in other games that I will not mention.  It would depend on what you enjoy. Do you like hearing familiar songs? Do you want to be introduced to new music? Do you want to dance and socialize?  Pop in whenever you see a show being advertised and find your own path!