Episode 9 – The Witness


Serenely, you meander through the bright, effervescent world of The Witness. The sky is a brilliant shade of blue dotted with the occasional brush stroked cloud. The problems and struggles of the real world fade away as you solve cereal box puzzles in quick succession until… “wtf? Why isn’t this one working? What did I do wrong? Do I need to rethink this whole segment? I tried it 50 different times and it still doesn’t work! ARRGHHH…”

Other games discussed: The Division, Puzzles and Monsters, Firewatch, The Talos Principle

Further Reading:

Michelle Ehrhardt’s KillScreen article about The Division and 9/11

Beyoncé’s “Formation”

Run the Jewels “Close Your Eyes And Count To Fuck”

Darius Kazemi’s piece on The Witness

ZAM’s “Top 10 Saddest Statues in The Witness”

Episode 8 – Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime


Enemy fire peppers the hull from all directions. “our Love Shields are down to 33%, Captain!” shouts the first mate from below decks. I jump on the rudder and swing wildly to starboard. All of a sudden fisticuffs cloud my vision and the first ma- “wait, who made you the captain?”

“Well, I’m better at steering”

“Arguably guns are more important”

We explode into a thousand starbursts of cosmic love, tinged with the sourness of a married couple’s bickering.

Other games discussed: Fallout 4, Bloodborne, Splatoon

Yussef’s blog post about Fallout 4’s ahistorical framing of racism

The Fallout 3 house inspired by Ray Bradbury’s “There Will Come Soft Rains”

Studs Terkel – “What has happened to the human voice?”

PBS Game/Show – “Will There Always be Violent Video Games?”

Episode 7 – Her Story


You type frantically at the keys, searching for the right keywords. “Damnit, their SEO is garbage,” you mutter frantically to yourself. Cheap office lights hum and then pop intermittently. Finally, you find it: “Tavit and Yussef’s Video Game Hour” On the screen Yussef absentmindedly toys with his hair, wait or is that Tavit? It’s in your notes somewhere…

Other games discussed: Splatoon, Rocket League

Episode 6 – Beyond Good & Evil


Jade draws her green patent leather jacket close around her shoulders as the sun sets over the sleepy Hillys island community. Over from Mammago’s garage she hears the comical bellow of a rhino with a, frankly, questionable Jamaican accent. She lifts up her camera and turns it around, framing herself perfectly with the setting sun just over her shoulder. “This is gonna be a bitchin’ selfie.”

Other games discussed: Destiny, Batman: Arkham Knight

Show Notes:

Paul McCartney doing… something for Destiny

A Fire Upon the Deep, by Verner Vinge

Tevis Thompson on Destiny and Desert Golfing

Paul Tassi writes for Forbes, not the FT

The César Alvarez show I so disastrously mistitled

Episode 5 – Two5Six, Eighty-Sixed


Angela Burnes walks over to the stereo and pulls a vinyl from its sleeve. “Two5Six Conference Discussion,” it reads. She pops it on the platter and lowers the needle: *record scratch sound effect* *record erupts in flames* “Guess we’re not covering Two5Six this episode then,” Angela mutters to herself before heading to the elevator.

Other games discussed: Sunset, Bayonetta, GTAV, Xenoblade Chronicles, Witcher 3

Episode 4 – Life is Strange


Maxine Caulfield slams her locker door shut. Another rough day being a gifted teen at Blackwell Academy. Scrawled across her locker in black Sharpie, someone has written “Go Fuck Your Selfie.” Max sighs. “Who even comes up with this stuff?” she wonders.

Other games discussed: Bloodborne, Dungeons and Dragons

Episode 3 – 80 Days


The wind picks up as Phileas Fogg boards a giant robotic palanquin. You, trusty Passepartout, hand him his luggage. When he beckons, you simply shake your head and turn to face the garrulous Turkish automata. Over your shoulder you call: “You’d regret it if you stayed. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but definitely in 80 Days!”

Other games discussed: Ori and the Blind Forest, Xenoblade Chronicles, Monster Hunter 4, Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker

Episode 2 – The Talos Principle


Waking up to blinding sunlight and phosphorescent glitches you are accosted by a booming paternalistic voice which subsequently commands you to collect every achievement in site. The booming voice then winks somehow, “gotcha, video games!” it intones.

Other games discussed: Grow Home, Monster Hunter 4

Episode 1 – Wolfenstein: The New Order


Creeping despair threatens to overwhelm your burning nihilistic rage. You walk up to an unsuspecting guard and leap at him silently, ready to eliminate another threat. Unfortunately, he turns just as you raise your hand to strike and grapples you into mortal combat – which involves stabbing each other repeatedly in the neck for an absurd amount of time. Welcome to Wolfenstein.

Other games discussed: Red Dead Redemption, Dishonored, Super Smash Brothers, Animal Crossing, Shovel Knight.