September 25, 2018

6.2: Ninefox Gambit post-read w/ Ellie Bartels: Military Games in Science Fiction

At long last, our follow-up episode to Yoon Ha Lee's wonderful Ninefox Gambit has arrived! And Ellie is back to talk about her job & the book with us.

Unlike most post-read episodes, we start off with a longer, non-spoiler discussion with Ellie about what she does & how the US Government uses startegy war games in both education & decision-making. It's a fascinating half hour conversation, and worth listening to even if you haven't read the book. 

Then of course we get into the meat of it! This episode, we talk about the details & themes of the book, and how they apply to the real world. Want to know more? You'll have to listen.

Our list of resources this time around (if the links don't show up, find them on or our twitter, @spectologypod):

Raven Strategem and Revenant Gun, the next two books in the series
- Yoon Ha Lee's own cheat sheet for the factions in the Hexarchate
- Five genre books about games recommended by Yoon Ha Lee
- The twitter thread about writing SF from different bodies
- Harpoon, a military strategy game available to the public
- WaPo profile of Volko Runhke, a CIA game designer
- Brian Train's Board Game Geek profile
The Art of Wargaming (link to the Kindle edition, other editions availalbe on amazon with a search)
- A discussion of useful SF to read for military commanders 
- Bombshell, a great national security podcast (they sometimes talk about books!)


We'd love to hear from you, either by chatting with us on twitter at @spectologypod, sending us an email at, or submitting the episode to r/printSF on reddit. We'll reply, and shout you out in the next podcast when we talk about your comment.

And if you like the episode, subscribe at or whever you listen to podcasts, and share it with your friends!

Many thanks to Dubby J and Noah Bradley for doing our music and art.

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