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Jumping the Shark Podcast: 2015 Collection (#223-#246)

Herein you will find links to every Jumping the Shark video gaming podcast posted in 2015. I’ve been terrible about posting them the past few months, but then, if you’re listening you’re probably subscribed already, right? RIGHT?!?!

This year, JtS featured the vocal stylings of Todd Brakke (

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Episode 223
Released: 1/11/2015
Synopsis: The first JTS of 2015 features a lot of looking back at 2014. Find out how Brandon, Todd, and Holly marked the passage of time with their most memorable gaming experiences of the year. Plus, much ballyhoo about Fry Scores, Holly’s much-awaited cookbook, which is a real live product now. The phrase “food porn” was invented for association with this stunning piece of work!

Episode 224
Released: 1/25/2015
Synopsis: This week Holly brings us through her 100+ hour Far Cry 4 journey, Todd and Brandon continue to dissect Dragon Age: Inquisition, including why Todd thinks it ultimately failed. Brandon talks cheating in Gems of War of all places. Plus, football, football, football! And somebody, we don’t want to say who, has a girl scout cookie mishap.

Episode 225
Released: 2/8/2015
Synopsis: The gang isn’t messing around this week. We’ve got Holly’s delightful adventures in The Room and her distaste for Betrayer. Bradon’s straight up Gat Out of Hell, the latest entry in Saints Row. Todd’s hiding in a ball in a dimly lit corner of the Darkest Dungeon. Plus, the glorious return of Birthday Uke and a big-time spoiler section at the very end for Dragon Age: Inquisition.

Episode 226
Released: 2/22/2015
Synopsis: This week Todd takes on the economic realities of managing a Martian colony in Offworld Trading Company, Brandon relives the same three days over and over to glorious effect in The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, and Holly jumps on zombie faces in Dying Light.

Episode 227
Released: 3/8/2015
Synopsis: While Holly recuperates from moving, Brandon and Todd keep the torch alive with much discussion of GDC happenings – new Valve hardware, VR headsets, Rock Band 4, and Tim Schafer’s sock. Brandon goes pup-hunting in The Order: 1886 and Todd breaks out his best end zone dances for Frozen Cortex.

Episode 228
Released: 2/22/2015
Synopsis: This week Todd gallivants across the galaxy in a Mass Effect 1 replay. That is, when he’s not unclogging his city’s streets in Cities: Skylines. Holly and Brandon discuss the unrelenting violence of Hotline Miami 2.

Episode 229
Released: 4/5/2015
Synopsis: This week brings a big, deep, crunchy look at the results of Obsidian Entertainment’s highly successful Kickstarter project, Pillars of Eternity. Does this kind of Infinity Engine-inspired RPG work in 2015? (Yeah, you already know the answer to that.) We also kick off with a look back at Wrath of Khan and a wrap-up that features Assassin’s Creed: Rogue, kicking zombies for levels in Dying Light, and much marveling at AMC’s The Walking Dead.

Episode 230
Released: 4/19/2015
Synopsis: For episode #230 it’s the Todd and Brandon show one more time as Todd continues to gush over Pillars of Eternity, Brandon explains why he stopped playing it to start playing Xenoblade Chronicles 3D and then they take a little detour into the town of Salem for Murdered: Soul Suspect. Wrapping up there’s a bit of an argument over going home with Chewie in the the new Star Wars trailer. Good times.

Episode 231
Released: 5/3/2015
Synopsis: This week Holly is back and the gang is all geared up to talk about Steam’s abbreviated attempt to implement a compensation system for mod creators. Also, Holly’s E3 prep, Brandon goes for a jaunt down Sunset Overdrive, and Todd’s sitting around waiting for The Witcher 3.

Episode 232
Released: 5/18/2015
Synopsis: This week Todd, Holly and Brandon talk about the Witcher 3 pre-release coverage, how useful (or not) preview coverage is, and how it tends to be an indicator of the review for the final product. Sadness. Then Brandon gets into Wolfenstein: The Old Blood a bit before Holly departs and the menfolk talk Avengers: Age of Ultron in full spoilery detail.

Episode 233
Released: 5/31/2015
Synopsis: This week the gang gets obsessive as Holly, Brandon, and Todd talk about addiction in game design and how vulnerable sufferers of OCD are to their compulsions. We’ve also got a wagon load of Witcher 3 impressions and you won’t want to miss Todd’s top 3 Napa Valley wineries. (You know, because visiting roughly a dozen wineries out of several hundred absolutely makes you an expert.) Also, also — Todd has fun with outtakes.

Episode 234
Released: 6/14/2015
Synopsis: It’s the week before E3 so Brandon, Holly and Todd are talking about what they want to see from the big show as well as their reaction to Oculus Rift and Fallout 4. Plus, more Witcher 3 lovin’!

Episode 235
Released: 6/28/2015
Synopsis: This week on Jumping the Shark it’s all E3 2015 all the time as the gang chews over a bunch of new Fallout 4 morsels, Brandon laments that backwards compatibility on the One will in no way improve his life, Holly finds great stories on the show floor, and Todd finds himself feeling joyful about games again (PC Gaming Show excluded).

Episode 236
Released: 7/12/2015
Synopsis: Holly couldn’t make it this week but Brandon and Todd are here to talk about SDCC, Witcher 3, Batman: Arkham Knight and the joy of Apple’s new music streaming serrvice. Come for the game talk, stay for Sad Batman.

Episode 237
Released: 8/9/2015
Synopsis: After a brief summertime respit, the crafty trio are back at this week as we talk about the TIME magazine VR cover and what it says about the future for VR tech. Also Fallout 4 Gamescom developments and how games tackle leveling. Finally, Brandon and Todd light the spoiler bonfire to talk in-depth about Witcher 3, complete with clips from the game. It’s a double-length episode to prove our love to you!

Episode 238
Released: 8/23/2015
Synopsis: This week Holly, Todd and Brandon all take the Gamer Motivation Profile Test at to get a sense of what drives them:

Holly’s Gamer Profile
Brandon’s Gamer Profile
Todd’s Gamer Profile

Surprises abound!

Wrapping up, Brandon is excited for The Taken King as well as Mike Bithell’s new game Volume, Holly is not impressed with Sunless Sea and Todd takes Invisible, Inc out for another spin.

Episode 239
Released: 9/7/2015
Synopsis: For this week’s Jumping the Shark, we’re coming at you with Holly’s on the ground reports from this year’s PAX Prime. There was drama. There were new announcements! Except, no. No, there was none of that. But she was there and she’s here to rap with us about it. Also, chicken pot pie! Later in the episode Todd ducks for cover under heavy threat of Satellite Reign and Brandon gets his horror show on with the PS4 exclusive, Until Dawn.

Episode 240
Released: 9/20/2015
Synopsis: This week it’s just Todd and Brandon but they have much to talk about. Brandon gets down and dirty with Destiny 2.0 and the Taken King before describing the joy and pain of the apocalyptic wasteland in Mad Max. Then Todd talks about getting in the right head space for MGSV and AC 4: Black Flag. It’s an open world extravaganza!

Episode 241
Released: 10/4/2015
Synopsis: The gang is all in for episode 241 as Holly delights with talk of her terrifying and emotional journey in the underwater vastness of SOMA. Brandon has his Destiny taken by a King and furthers his love of Nolan North in the process. And Todd says angry things –many, many angry things– about Spike Lee’s influence in NBA 2k16, not to mention the continued insult that is the game’s Virtual Currency system.

Episode 242
Released: 10/25/2015
Synopsis: This week Todd and Brandon return to the world of the Witcher with the Hearts of Stone expansion, Todd heads back to Ferelden with the Trespasser DLC for Dragon Age: Inquisition and finally gets around to finishing Pillars of Eternity. There’s also some Destiny talk because when isn’t there?

Episode 243
Released: 11/8/2015
Synopsis: It’s another Todd and Brandon hour of power. This week’s topics include prep for Fallout 4, Brandon’s foray into Halo 5, Todd’s Jedi vision quest in the all-new, all-different Star Wars: The Old Republic v4.0, and a very touching story of Destiny players coming together in peace and harmony.

Episode 244
Released: 11/22/2015
Synopsis: War, war never changes. Apparently neither does Fallout. HEYO! This week Holly, Todd and Brandon share their experiences exploring an irradiated Boston, killing ghouls and synths and scavenging for screws and other exciting pieces of garbage. It’s Fallout 4 week on Jumping the Shark and you’re invited!

Episode 245
Released: 12/6/2015
Synopsis: This week’s episode brings you –gasp– more Fallout 4! Holly drops cooking knowledge bombs gleaned from the wasteland, Todd dons a Silver Shroud (and buys a PS4), and Brandon gives it all up and instead goes raiding tombs in Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Episode 246
Released: 12/20/2015
Synopsis: This week Brandon, Holly and Todd get down with the residents of Arcadia Bay and talk about Dontnod’s excellent five part adventure game, Life is Strange. Laughter! Tears! Hella wowzers! Also, Todd has his final thoughts on Fallout 4 and Brandon has more tales from raiding in Destiny. Happy Holidays everyone!

Jumping the Shark Update

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Just a quick update on the JTS status for the week. Unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances made it so that Bill could not attend this week’s show. Todd was sailing the high seas, like the slacker man of leisure that he is, so that left just me to do the show. I think it’s safe to say that I am barely competent when on the show with two other people, so doing a show solo would lead to nothing good. Yes, I have done it in the past but that was with time and preparation on my side, two things I didn’t have this time around.

So, in short, I’m very sorry that there’s no new episode this week. If you missed last week’s episode, on account of no one posting about it because Todd was gone and we’re all lazy sots, here it is. I’ll do a better job in the future covering for Mr. Brakke and making sure that JTS gets served up hot and fresh. I’m grateful that people care when we miss an episode and I don’t feel particularly good about taking that for granted. For that, I apologize.

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Past Episodes
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(The embedded feed is after the break.)

Jumping the Shark Podcast #156

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I’ve been negligent in posting this as I’ve been out of town more often than not since it went live back on December 24th, but if you missed it, Jumping the Shark #156 brings you a technology-repressed cameo from Bill, who promptly lost his Internet service 20 minutes in, followed by a special Brakke/Cackowski-Schnell half-hour of power. Our topic for this one was a look back at 2012, our most notable moments, favorite games, trends, etc. There’s no new show this week as we all took the time to be with family and whatnot, but we’ll be back on the podcasting wagon in time to post our next episode next Sunday night.

We hope you all had a great holiday season and here’s to 2013 hopefully not sucking!

iTunes Link
Past Episodes
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(The embedded feed is after the break.)

Jumping the Shark Podcast #154

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The gang is all here for Jumping the Shark #154, which makes two episodes in a row with a full house. Don’t look now, but it could be a trend. This week Mr. Abner brings you more details on Tomorrow, including the launch of its already successful Kickstarter campaign. The group takes a stroll with The Walking Dead, what with Mr. Binky having completed the final chapter of TellTale’s incredible episodic adventure. Brandon also spends some time with the new Borderlands 2 DLC, Torgue’s Badass Crater of Badassitude. Seriously, that’s the title. I decide to put my time with Baldur’s Gate Enhanced Edition on hold in order to wait for the iOS version (unbeknownst to me, it would arrive the very next night), but in the meantime I’m very excited about my new Windows Phone 8 and forthcoming Pathfinder campaign (it’s a D&D like pen-and-paper RPG). Finally, our apologies for the quality of Bill’s audio this week. His mic has been spotty for awhile, we know, but a quick plug and unplug has always done the trick… until this week that is. Be sure to send him some hate mail for it as encouragement to pick up a new headset for this week’s show! (No, really, you should absolutely do that. Be as vulgar as you want to be. He likes that!)

After the break, an Honest Trailer for Dark Knight Rises, just because it’s awesome…

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Past Episodes
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(The embedded feed is after the break.)


I love this. I really, really love this:

YouTube video

Jumping the Shark Podcast #153

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Having emerged from our respective turkey comas, the mad trio are all back together for Jumping the Shark #153. Bill gives us the lowdown on The New Science’s success at BGG Con, the latest developments in Tomorrow, and a few other cardboard bits and pieces that have been on his carving plate, including Spartacus, and the first deck-building game in a long while to grab his attention, Legendary. I spend a few hours with Baldur’s Gate Enhanced Edition (PC version) and find that, yep, it’s pretty much Baldur’s Gate, only it runs better on modern hardware. I’m also reminded just what it was like to play a so-called hardcore RPG in the 90s era of game design. Things really have changed and, it turns out, some of those changes were for the better. Finally, Brandon wraps up his time with Dishonored and finds a few more shiny spots behind the blemishes of Halo 4.

iTunes Link
Past Episodes
Edit Type: Skype
(The embedded feed is after the break.)