So what even is this?
Keeg’s Quest was born from a strange and fairly unlikely confluence of events. When the trailer for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was released… well, for lack of a better idiom, the world essentially lost its collective shit. It hit with the impact of a Star Wars trailer, but back when Star Wars was still universally accepted as a good thing. Before the Dark Times. Before the YouTube.
It was incredible. Just… holy crap. The action. The music. The graphics. Max Von Friggin Sydow. And then… they said “Oh yeah, you’re going to have to wait a year for this.” And it felt like starving to death outside your favorite restaurant, and it was closed for a year. It was so close, and so far away (but if you concentrated, it felt like you could smell it), and there were basically two ways to feel better; reinstall Oblivion for like the 5th time and play it through (which almost made it feel worse), or listen to podcasts. Like-minded folk with ideas and theories and speculation, based on the pittance of information we had.
Then came the Game Informer Prophecies, handed down by the prophet Mark Miller. He who stood in the very presence of Todd, within His fabled realm. It was he who warned us of the dragons. It was he who revealed our destinies. And then….
More discussion. More speculation. There were serious discussions and heated debates about the relative usefulness of horse armor in Skyrim vis-à-vis that in Oblivion. But very little in the way of actual information. So we made shit up, and a lot of it was weird. We, as a fandom, were coming apart at the seams. Something had to be done. Hold that thought during the following emotional interlude:
Around this time, my mom had fallen quite ill. She’d had MS for years and had recently gotten aspiration pneumonia. So, she was in various hospitals for the better part of a year. The place where she landed for the longest stretch of this was in a city about a half hour away (interestingly, I work in that city now). I visited her every day, and to pass the time during the commute, I did a couple of things. I listened to Skyrim podcasts and talked to myself. I talked to myself a lot. I talked to myself in a lot of voices. My Nord voice got in an argument with my Bosmer voice. And the rest kind of snowballed from there.
The story takes shape…
The idea was to have a sort of prequel story leading up to the release of Skyrim. I dug deep into lore, pored over maps, and peppered in a LOT of anachronistic pop culture references and maybe a little social commentary through the lens of the Elder Scrolls. I submitted tiny scenes to the Dovahkiin Podcast, which was my favorite of the bunch. My little stories would provide a curious bit of amusement at the end of their show. And maybe, just maybe, it would be entertaining enough to distract folks for the few months it would take for the game to release.
The shorts were more popular than I thought they’d be. Eventually, I figured “why the hell not?” and made my own show. And it went really well. People liked it. But my biggest fan? Mom. She didn’t have a whole heck of a lot to smile about, but each time I made an episode, she’d be the first to hear it, and she smiled and she laughed. Which… much like Aphasia Sibilance, was mostly silent. She had a trach tube in, and unless she had a special valve in there, she couldn’t talk. But she had a great time listening to the episodes and her silent laughter was music to my… eyes. I suppose.
When the game finally did release, I had to do some massive retcons because my “theoretical backstory” I had created did not accurately match the world we found upon the game’s release. We lost a Divine… arguably the coolest one… and the entire Mages’ Guild just disapparated (Potter reference). But, it worked out pretty well. The show became something of a cult favorite. It even won an award (which 11 years later I still can’t shut up about), and mom and I listened to that awards ceremony live. A bit nerve wracking, but wonderful. She was so proud. 🙂
But, eventually, the show kind of dropped off the face of the earth and Nirn, much like Talos and the Mages’ Guild. Mom passed away, I went from full-time caregiver to full-time newspaper pagination guy, and just didn’t have the time anymore. Or, rather, didn’t see fit to make the time anymore. And then….
Fast forward to a couple months ago. My son and I were helping my daughter (Remember Suzie? She’s 19 now.) move out of her freshman dorm, and Bella was off doing logistical crap and Bren and I were talking. He said “I noticed on Reddit you still have a bunch of fans.” And I was like WHAAAAAT??? And sure enough, people were still posting on r/Skyrim about the show! I couldn’t believe it. And that, more than anything else, cemented the decision to get the band back together. Love you guys. And speaking of Reddit, please drop by r/KeegsQuest and say hi!
A lot’s happened in the world. Seems as good a time as any to do some catching up with The Guys and see if maybe, just maybe… we can make it a little better. Or maybe a little worse. Either way, we hope you enjoy the ride.
Best Speculative Fiction
Audio Drama (Short Form)