Slate editor Julia Turner: What I Play

Julia Turner, the editor-in-chief of Slate and a host of Slate’s Culture Gabfest podcast, talks about why she plays games on her iPhone, why she aspires to be called a gamer, and why she can’t stop playing Two Dots. LANGUAGE WARNING: Chris forgot to tell Julia that this podcast is supposed to be PG rated.

‘Witcher 3’ & ‘Hearthstone’

Happy New Year! It’s time to clear out your 2015 backlog before Jonathan Blow’s “The Witness” arrives near the end of the month. We’re tackling “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.” Then, Chris talks to New York magazine editor and former Gawker editor-in-chief Max Read about “Hearthstone.”

The end of ‘Fallout 4’ & ‘Shadow of the Colossus’

The “Fallout 4” saga concludes. Or JJ’s saga concludes, on a spoiler-y note. Then, Chris talks to Nick Suttner about his new book on Team Ico’s “Shadow of the Colossus,” which is titled, appropriately, “Shadow of the Colossus.” It’s the latest from Boss Fight Books. We spoil “Shadow of the Colossus,” too, but c’mon, it came out more than 10 years ago. There’s an expiration date on these things.

Even More ‘Fallout 4’ & ‘Cibele’

Peter Suderman–a senior editor for Reason magazine, a cultural critic for Vox, and a Bethesda superfan–talks about his first 40 hours in the Commonwealth. Are the crafting menus and inventory systems in “Fallout 4” obtuse, or a subtle nudge to promote player creativity? JJ divulges why he has built a bureau to house weapons in the middle of a Sanctuary street.

Then, Chris and JJ review “Cibele,” Nina Freeman’s autobiographical vignette about sex and virtual worlds. They (politely?) disagree.

More ‘Fallout 4’ & ‘How to Talk About Videogames’

“Fallout 4”: Our favorite sidequests and companions after two weeks in the Commonwealth. Plus, Ian Bogost on his new book, “How to Talk About Videogames.”

It’s a double album. Forgive us? It’s still much shorter than “Fallout 4.”

‘Fallout 4’ & ‘Rise of the Tomb Raider’

“Fallout 4” is almost out, and we’ve played it. Or some of it. JJ and Chris have each put about 20 hours into “Fallout 4,” which will be released on Tuesday. We have some impressions. We try not to spoil the game, because it’s virtually impossible that you’ve played any of it. Then, Chris talks to Kotaku’s Evan Narcisse about “Rise of the Tomb Raider,” to find out if he should have spent last week playing Lara Croft’s newest adventure instead.

‘Don’t Starve,’ ‘This War of Mine’ & Listener Mail

JJ and Chris are prepping an episode about “Fallout 4” and “Rise of the Tomb Raider,” so here is a remix of two of our favorite segments, plus some new listener mail: Slate books and culture columnist Laura Miller talks about her “Don’t Starve” obsession; JJ plays “This War of Mine” and compares it to his experiences as a war correspondent; and (and this is new) a listener with suggestions for games that Jesus would love.

‘Halo 5’ & Fact Checking ‘Assassin’s Creed Syndicate’

Tina Amini, the recently departed deputy editor of Kotaku, joins the show to talk about her playthrough of the newly released “Halo 5: Guardians,” the second “Halo” game from 343 Industries. Then, Bob Whitaker, a historian of Britain at Louisiana Tech and the host of the YouTube series “History Respawned,” talks to Chris about the historical accuracy of “Assassin’s Creed Syndicate.” Spoiler: Victorian London needs more prostitutes.

‘Assassin’s Creed Syndicate’ & That Old-Time Video Game Religion

In an unprecedented feat for Shall We Play a Game?, we have a release-day review of “Assassin’s Creed Syndicate,” the newest entry in Ubisoft’s long-running game of historical tourism, if tourists spent most of their time murdering. Kotaku editor-in-chief Stephen Totilo shows up, too, to talk about why he can’t stop playing these games. Plus, listener mail–about whether a video game could found a major world religion.

‘Prison Architect’ & (Really!) Listener Mail

Chris Delay and Mark Morris of Introversion Software drop by to talk about their acclaimed simulator “Prison Architect,” which finally exited Steam’s Early Access program this month. With the growing discussion of mass incarceration in the United States, do Americans experience the game in a different context than players in other countries? And why are prisons so fascinating?