Archive for March, 2011

>A Year’s Worth of Data – Red Steel 2

March 31, 2011

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Coffee Beans:
     Red Steel 2 released on March 23, 2010 as a Wii exclusive, that was also a WM+ exclusive title…meaning Red Steel 2 isn’t/wasn’t playable without a WM+ unit.  Red Steel 2 released with a software only version of the game for $49.99, and a Wii MotionPlus bundled version for $59.99.
     Red Steel 2 saw its first price drop just 4 months after it released, in July 2010.  The MSRP for the software only version dropped from $49.99, down to $39.99; and the WM+ bundle dropped from $59.99, down to $49.99.
     Red Steel 2 has since seen another price drop, now with the regular version selling for $19.99, or less; and the WM+ bundle selling for $29.99, or less.

     How many hours have Wii owners reported playing Red Steel 2 in the last year, with 371 days reported?  Let’s take a look!

Hours shown are for United States of America Wii owners, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     Red Steel 2 now has 44,589 Wii owners reporting game-play hours, through the Wii’s Nintendo Channel.

Reporting Player Increase:
     How many players has Red Steel 2 seen increased in reporting data since it first debuted in May 2010, and since the last report in December?
     Red Steel 2 has seen an increase of 37,782 players reporting data, since it first debuted in May; and Red Steel 2 has seen an increase of about 10,080 players reporting data, just since December 27.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours Reported:
     Red Steel 2 now has 429,025 Total Hours of game-play reported, an increase of 89,154 Total Hours since December 27; and it’s an increase of 371,287 Total Hours since the game first debuted in May 2010.
     Red Steel 2’s average play-time is now 9 Hours 37 Minutes “Per person” reporting data, which is a decrease of 14 minutes from the average recorded on December 27, but it’s an increase of 1 Hour 7 Minutes more than the average “Per person” was when it first debuted.
     Red Steel 2’s average play-time per session is now just over 1 Hour 49 Minutes.

Sales Ranks & Advertised Prices:
     Red Steel 2’s Amazon.com sale rank is #1,503, and it’s currently listed for $16.47.
     Red Steel 2’s Wii MotionPlus bundle Amazon.com sale rank is #3,172, and it is currently listed for $24.75 + 3.99 shipping from a third party vendor.
     (Sales ranks and advertised prices recorded around 12:30AM, on 3-31-11)

Review Score Averages:
     Red Steel 2’s “professional” review score average is 80.62%, based on 47 reviews on GameRankings.com.

     Red Steel 2 has a 4 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 41 customer reviews for just the software version of the game; while the WM+ bundle for the game has a 4.5 out of 5 Stars rating based on 18 customer reviews.
     Red Steel 2’s customer review score averages are 85.76%, when the reviews are converted to a 100% review scale.

Click to enlarge

     (Review score averages recorded around 12:30AM, on 3-31-11)

Filtered Thoughts:
     I still wonder why Red Steel 2 didn’t include any sort of multi-player, though I know Jason Vandenberghe(creative director) stated the development team was concentrating on the game’s single-player campaign, making sure it was solid.  While concentrating on the game’s single-player campaign perhaps helped initially with some decent reviews for the game early on, I think it was the fact the game only had a single-player campaign that kept it from selling better than it did.
     I know there have been several regular readers here that have commented things like Red Steel 2 was “lacking in content”, and it had “an extremely short campaign, no replay value whatsoever”.  I think this word-of-mouth probably spread quickly about the game, and from the game-play data reported over the last year, it does appear that Wii owners are completing Red Steel 2 just once, and then moving on.
     Hopefully Ubisoft learned a lot while developing Red Steel 2 though, and perhaps the WM+ controls will be used in another Wii FPS, perhaps even another Red Steel game.  If any of you haven’t seen any trailers/videos of Red Steel 2, here’s one for you to watch:

     While I still haven’t played Red Steel 2, I am now in possession of a Wii MotionPlus unit of sorts…as I now own a Nyko Wand+ controller…so, perhaps one day soon, I will play Red Steel 2!

Questions:
     Has this game crossed any of your radars recently?  Also, have any of you tried Nyko’s Wand+ controller with Red Steel 2, as well as the regular Wii MotionPlus unit?  If so, could you tell the difference with input from the Wand+ controller compared to the regular WM+ unit; perhaps one being better than the other?

If anybody is interested in Red Steel 2, you can see prices for both versions of the game on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B001TOMR0C&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B002MBQA18&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

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>Did You Board the Nintendo 3DS Hype Train?

March 30, 2011

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Our son, since he can’t use a 3DS, volunteered to drive the hype train.

Coffee Beans:
     When Game Stop started taking pre-orders for the 3DS back in December, I made a quick trip down to the store closest to my house on December 27, and put $50 down to reserve it.
     Just today, I went back by that store and canceled my Nintendo 3DS pre-order.

Reserve receipt on left, 12/27/10; cancel receipt on right, 3/29/11…same associate both times.

     Now, why did I cancel my 3DS pre-order?  Well, there are few reasons, and here they are:

     1)  Not super interested in any of the release titles.
     2)  School is now registering for Summer/Fall classes…which means MORE money for school.
     3)  The reports of the annoying 3DS black screen of death that are going around.
     4)  No Netflix or online shop channel, or web browser…yet.

Filtered Thoughts:
     While I have stated before I wasn’t really interested in any of the release titles, the AR cards/games are still what I want to check out the most.
     Saturday night, technically Sunday morning, I was chatting with Keith from RespawnAction.com, and he had just picked up a 3DS from a midnight release at GameStop.  It was between the time that he picked it up, and later when he was talking about it, that I saw the first reports about the 3DS’ black screen of “death”.  While I know the issue isn’t “killing” the systems, I do think it’s really odd for it to be happening, and it appears to be annoying for some new 3DS owners.
     On Monday(yesterday), my college started doing early registration for Summer/Fall classes, and it looks like I’m going to be piling on the hours during at least the Fall semester.  More hours = more money.
     The lack of Netflix isn’t a big issue, but more of a feature that I’m looking forward to the system getting.  The lack of an online shop channel and web browser though, is really kind of a bummer right now, because once a browser is functional, hopefully I won’t need to carry around my iPod Touch anymore…though I think it’s going to be interesting to see how functional the 3DS browser really is.

     I’m hoping in the next few weeks, that Nintendo figures out what exactly is causing the “black screen of death”, and they can fix it with a firmware update quickly.  I’ll be watching for any news on it, as that may be a determining factor for me moving forward.
     Anyway, here are a few links to 3DS impressions, from people that purchased the system, and didn’t have it “gifted” to them by Nintendo…at least that I know of:
     Keith – Nintendo 3DS Unboxing, First Impressions, SSFIV 3D Quick Look
     Tony – My First Day With the 3DS
     Gaz – Day One in the Life of a 3DS Owner
     The Dread Pirate Guy – 3DS Impressions – Day 1

Questions:
     If you didn’t get to demo the 3DS before it released, and you purchased it, what are your impressions of it?  Is it worth the $250 ticket price to get on board?

Did you board the 3DS hype train?customer surveys

If you’re interested in the Nintendo 3DS, but haven’t purchased it yet, you can see prices for it on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B002I096AA&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B002I090AG&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

>The Wii’s First Online Multiplayer Game – Pokemon Battle Revolution Data Report

March 27, 2011

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Coffee Beans:
     Pokemon Battle Revolution(PBR) was released on June 25, 2007 in North America, with a MSRP of $49.99.  Pokemon Battle Revolution was the very first Wii game to have online multi-player, as well as connectivity with some of the Pokemon Nintendo DS games.

     Pokemon Battle Revolution was rated “E” for Everyone by the ESRB, with “Mild Fantasy Violence” as the only content listed for parents to be aware of.

     How many hours have Wii owners spent battling in Pokemon Battle Revolution?  Let’s take a look!

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     Pokemon Battle Revolution has 441,681 Wii owners reporting their play-time data through the Wii’s Nintendo Channel, with 1,366 days reported.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours Reported:
     Pokemon Battle Revolution has 10,115,086 Total Hours of game-play reported, with an average play-time of 22 Hours 54 Minutes “Per person” reporting data.

     Pokemon Battle Revolution’s average play-time per session is just over 1 Hour 35 Minutes.

Sale Rank & Advertised Price:
     Pokemon Battle Revolution’s Amazon.com sale rank is #2,162, and it’s currently selling for $59.34.
     (Sale rank and advertised price recorded around 5:20PM, on 3-27-11)

Review Score Averages:
     Pokemon Battle Revolution’s “professional” review score average is 53.19%, based on 34 reviews on GameRankings.com.

     PBR has a 3.5 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 43 customer reviews.
     Pokemon Battle Revolution’s customer review score average is 65.11%, when converted to a 100% review scale.

     (Review score averages recorded around 5:20PM, on 3-27-11)

Filtered Thoughts:
     I haven’t played Pokemon Battle Revolution, but I haven’t played any Pokemon game really.  The Pokemon series of games is one that I just have never really tried, due to a very shallow hatred for the series I created, dating back to the 90s and the N64 era.

     I do think the “Total Hours” reported for Pokemon Battle Revolution are low compared to some other Wii games(Call of Duty: World at War, Metroid Prime 3), especially considering it was the very first Wii game to have an online multi-player aspect.
     I’ve read that the handheld Pokemon games, such as Pokemon Black/White, are more popular than the console Pokemon games, and perhaps this data reflects that with the average hours “Per person” reported being just over 20 hours?

     As for the game’s Amazon.com sale rank, I think the Amazon data probably means that Nintendo has stopped publishing Pokemon Battle Revolution, because the game isn’t listed from Amazon.com directly, but only from third parties.

Questions:
     Have any of you played Pokemon Battle Revolution, and if so, what do you think about the game?  Was the online multi-player done pretty well for a Pokemon game?  Also, are any of you perhaps still playing Pokemon Battle Revolution on a regular basis?

If anybody is interested in Pokemon Battle Revolution, you can see prices for it on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B000OAJKI4&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr 

>Spring Break & Video Game Treasures!

March 27, 2011

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The beach…where we didn’t spend Spring Break!

     Three weeks ago my wife and I, along with our son, flew to Louisiana to visit family over my Spring Break from college.  Our original flight was canceled due to mechanical issues, so we left a day late, on March 3.
     While we were down, we visited both my family and Mrs. Coffee’s family, over a period of 5 days.  The weekend we were there, we stayed with my wife’s family.  Her older brother owns a PS3 and had been enjoying Call of Duty: Black Ops, and he ended up going to his house Friday night, and bringing the PS3 and Black Ops over.
     While my wife fell asleep on the couch early(11-ish probably) Friday night, I stayed up until about 3AM with her two brothers, playing Black Ops online.  We would take turns, and play one round each, then pass the controller off.
     We played Black Ops Saturday during the day some, and then late Saturday night as well, until about 3AM again.  Earlier Saturday evening, Mrs. Coffee’s older brother went and purchased another PS3 controller, so we could play splitscreen online multi-player, and we had a lot of fun doing it.
     The reason this post has been delayed for 2 weeks is because I was trying to get a video from one of the multi-player matches that was played in Black Ops over that weekend, but I haven’t had any luck getting it with Call of Duty’s Theater Mode.

     So, after spending time with Mrs. Coffee’s family, and playing Black Ops on Friday, Saturday, and little Sunday afternoon, we headed back to my parents’ house.
     I think it was Monday night, the night before we were leaving, that my brother came into the living room holding a shoe box.  The shoe box was treasure chest of video games that had been sitting in my closest for probably the last 10 years!
     “What video game treasures were in the shoe box?”  I’m glad you asked!  Take a look:

     If you can’t read the games, and don’t know them by the game cases, they are:
  • Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)
  • Donkey Kong Country (SNES)
  • Madden NFL ’94 (SNES)
  • Star Fox (SNES)
  • Super Mario World (SNES)
  • Street Fighter II Turbo (SNES)

     “What’d you do with those video game treasures?”  Glad you asked, again!  Like any good pirate(or bad pirate?), I stuffed them in my carry-on, and they made the return trip with us.  The only problem now, is finding a NES and SNES to play them with, as our systems are AWOL for the moment.

     Now, not only did I acquire the treasure chest of games while we were down, but a good friend came to visit us while we were at my parents’ house, and he brought two PS3 games for me to have…they are:

     Madden NFL 09 and Far Cry 2, both for the PS3.

     We enjoyed the trip visiting family and friends, minus the canceled flight cutting a day out of it, and I really didn’t think I would be returning with eight video games, but I guess they’ll help me with more stories on the site perhaps!

     Have any of you ever re-discovered video games, that had just been sitting in a box, perhaps for years, like I did over my Spring Break?

>GoldenEye 007 vs Call of Duty: Black Ops – Data Report

March 26, 2011

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     We last looked at a direct comparison of GoldenEye 007’s and Call of Duty: Black Ops’ reported game-play hours back in December, on Christmas day!
     In that report, Call of Duty: Black Ops had more hours reported than GoldenEye 007, but Black Ops had fewer players reporting the data, than GoldenEye.

     In the 92 days since the last report, have GoldenEye 007 players kept pace with Call of Duty: Black Ops players on the Wii?  Let’s take a look!

Hours shown are for United States of America Wii owners, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     GoldenEye 007 now has 49,117 Wii owners reporting their game-play hours, through the Wii’s Nintendo Channel.
     Call of Duty: Black Ops now has 64,631 Wii owners reporting their play-time data.

Reporting Player Increase:
     GoldenEye 007 has seen an increase of about 34,066 gamers reporting play-time data, since December 20.
     Call of Duty: Black Ops has seen an increase of about 52,321 gamers reporting their game-play hours, since December 20.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours Reported:
     GoldenEye 007 now has 1,056,214 Total Hours of game-play reported, an increase of 819,216 Total Hours since December 20.
     GoldenEye 007’s average play-time is now 21 Hours 31 Minutes “Per person” reporting data, which is 5 Hours 46 Minutes higher than its average on December 20 was.
     GoldenEye 007’s average play-time per session is just over 2 Hours 10 Minutes.

     Call of Duty: Black Ops now has 3,248,239 Total Hours of game-play reported, an increase of 2,907,890 Total Hours since December 20.
     Black Ops’ average play-time is now 50 Hours 16 Minutes “Per person” reporting data, which is 22 Hours 37 Minutes higher than its average from December 20.
     Call of Duty: Black Ops’ average play-time per session is just over 2 Hours 54 Minutes.

Sales Ranks & Advertised Prices:
     GoldenEye 007’s Amazon.com sale rank is #594, and is currently selling for $43.99.

     Call of Duty: Black Ops’ Amazon.com sale rank is #272, and is currently selling for $44.59.
     (Sale ranks and advertised prices recorded around 12:45AM, on 3-26-11)

Review Score Averages:
     GoldenEye 007’s “professional” review score average is 83.77%, now based on 62 reviews on GameRankings.com.
     GoldenEye 007 has a 4 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 97 customer reviews.
     GoldenEye 007’s customer review score average is 77.52%, when converted to a 100% review scale.

     Call of Duty: Black Ops’ “professional” review score average is 81.47%, now based on 17 reviews on GameRankings.com.
     Call of Duty: Black Ops has a 4 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 91 customer reviews.
     Call of Duty: Black Ops’ customer review score average is 78.68%, when converted to a 100% review scale.

     (Review score averages recorded around 12:45AM, on 3-26-11)

Filtered Thoughts:
     This week, GoldenEye 007 crossed one million reported game-play hours, while Call of Duty: Black Ops crossed three million reported game-play hours.
     I think it’s pretty incredible that Black Ops players have more than three times the reported number of hours played, that GoldenEye players have.
     I really expected GoldenEye to stay within half the number of hours reported as Black Ops, but the data is pretty clear that Black Ops is being played a lot more than GoldenEye.

     While GoldenEye isn’t winning in the hours reported, or players reporting data, its “professional” review score is slightly higher than Black Ops’, so it has at least one bragging right!
     While both games seem to be providing Wii owners with many hours of fun, I think the real winner here is Activision, as it published both games.

     While I haven’t played Black Ops on the Wii, I do own it on my PS3 and I finished the single-player campaign about 5 weeks ago.  I own GoldenEye 007 for the Wii, but I haven’t played it in a while, because I’m still working on my New Year’s resolution.
     If any of you are still playing GoldenEye’s online multi-player regularly, feel free to add my friend code for the game, 2043-7355-3797.  If you’re hopping online to play, feel free to send me an email to Scott(@)CoffeewithGames.com, and if I’m available I’ll hop online as well.

     Also, feel free to share your friend codes with each other in the comments below.

Questions:
     Have any of you been playing GoldenEye 007 and/or Call of Duty: Black Ops on the Wii regularly?  If so, what rank are you in the games’ online multi-player?
     I’m right around level 20 in GoldenEye 007’s online.

If anybody is interested in either GoldenEye 007 or Call of Duty: Black Ops for the Wii, you can see sale prices for both games on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B003O6H7X0&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B003N3HEU0&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

>Caffeinated Thoughts: My Nintendo 3DS Demo Unit Impressions

March 24, 2011

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Coming soon, coffee in 3D. Imagine that caffeine boost!

Coffee Beans:
     When news started spreading around the internet last week that 3DS demo units were popping up in Best Buy stores, I decided to start checking one of the stores I drive by almost daily.
     Last Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, I stopped by the Best Buy store, but there was no 3DS demo unit.  I didn’t check over the weekend, as I didn’t go by the store Friday or Saturday, and I took a different route home from church on Sunday.

     I stopped by the Best Buy again on Monday after class and I walked straight to the video game department; neatly on an end-cap on the backside of the video game department was an Aqua Blue Nintendo 3DS.  Now, why this Best Buy store had the 3DS demo unit on the back of the video game department didn’t make much sense to me, as I thought a new device like the 3DS would have an end-cap at the front of the department, but that didn’t stop me from finding it.
     I broke out my Zi8 and was recording the 3DS demo setup and the system itself, when a sales guy walked up.  I didn’t want to be rude and ignore him, so I said, “Hey, have you seen the 3DS?”  He hadn’t seen it, but had heard about it.
     The sales guy wasn’t a Best Buy employee, but one of those sales guys from either the cable or satellite company trying to get Best Buy customers to sign up for service, and somehow I passed his radar when walking through the store…and his homing beacon activated and he followed me all the way to the back.
     Once I told him I was just there checking out the 3DS system, he never mentioned the cable or satellite service, but did hang around to watch me fiddle with the system.

Pilotwings Resort, the only demo that was available.

The Roast – Day 1:
     I started the Pilotwings Resort demo with the 3D slider in the off position, and once I selected an airplane mission, I then started to adjust the 3D slider.  I wasn’t holding the system up in front of my face(as the instructions show!), but I could see the screen changing…though the screen wasn’t changing the images for me with any noticeable 3D effect.
     Now, you may be thinking, “Well, why weren’t you holding the 3DS up in front of your face?”  Well, when I play my DS Lite I’m used to playing with it held down, usually resting my hands on my legs, so I started playing the 3DS demo with it at a downward angle from my eyes.
     I thought I remembered hearing that it can take a few minutes/seconds for your eyes to properly adjust, so I was thinking that was the issue.  I would give it about 10-20 seconds, and when I didn’t notice a 3D effect, I would adjust the 3D slider.  I actually noticed my left eye feeling a bit strained, because of adjusting the 3D slider so many times.
     While I wasn’t noticing any real 3D effect, the sales guy was still standing behind my left shoulder, watching.  A few times I adjusted the 3D slider up, he said, “Is it clear for you?”, because as many have noted, the “3D window” is very small on the 3DS, and for anybody not directly centered on it, the top 3D screen will be blurry.
     I played around with it a little while longer, before heading home.

     So, what was my first day/experience impressions of the 3DS?  Well, I couldn’t say I was impressed, and I honestly thought Pilotwings Resort was not the correct choice to show off the capabilities of the system…though perhaps it is?
     I commented Monday on RespawnAction’s impressions of the 3DS, “If Pilotwings is the extent of 3D effects, I really don’t see how the 3DS is going to take off.  I hope they have some more games in-store, that really show off the 3D effects.”

The Roast – Day 2:
     I decided to stop back by Best Buy on Tuesday after class, and give the 3DS demo another try.  I headed straight to the 3DS demo unit, and nobody was around looking at it, and I wasn’t followed this time.
     As I was picking up the 3DS unit from the demo station, a Best Buy employee that was helping another customer looked over and said, “Make sure to hold that thing up in front of your face, directly in front of your eyes.  The closer, probably the better; though each person is a little different.”
     I will say, his advice is the best advice there is for getting the 3D effect to work with the demo station.  If you go out to find a 3DS demo station and test it, make sure to pick up the unit and actually hold it up in front of your face, like the pictures and videos show of people using it.

The way to view 3D

     So, I was holding it up, and started to adjust the 3D slider.  As I adjusted it this time, the images on the screen were changing, and I could tell there was a difference.  I had finally found a “sweet” spot with the 3D, and noticed the slight depth that had been added to the display.
     Now, I’ll be very honest, my initial reaction wasn’t, “Wow!  This is awesome!”, it was more, “Wow…this is it?”
     I spent a good amount of time with the 3DS demo unit on Tuesday, as I had the “Time expired…” message pop up twice on me.  Being that nobody else was around though, I just kept playing it.  I tried out all the missions in the demo, and tried the 3D slider from 100%, to just barely being on…and everywhere else.

Filtered Thoughts:
     As for the system itself, I didn’t really examine it a lot, just because of the way they have it secured, but I do think the circle pad worked well in the game.
     I did turn the system off and back on, hoping I could access the main menu, but it immediately loaded the Pilotwings Resort demo.

Don’t expect to see the menu if you find a 3DS demo station.

     I had read how the 3D effect for the 3DS was more like looking into a window, than actual images flying off the screen, so I wasn’t expecting movie theater 3D effects.
     One issue I think the 3DS will have, is how small the 3D effect window is.  I don’t exactly like the idea of holding the system up in my face the entire time to get the 3D effect.  While Nintendo is touting, “3D without glasses!”, it’s a very limited “3D without glasses”, as the viewing angles are extremely narrow.
     Yesterday I was chatting with Brad, from WhoBurnedMyToast, and said semi-jokingly about the 3D effect, “3D without glasses…just don’t move the screen and please hold it really steady while playing, and make sure that you aren’t wanting anybody else to see the 3D effect while you’re playing.”

     From my two brief days at the 3DS demo station, I really think Nintendo could have picked a better game that showed off the 3DS’ 3D capabilities, or just had the system running a 3D demo video(as they did at E3).
     Perhaps if I spend more time with the 3DS, and try out the AR games included with it, I will enjoy it more, as the 3DS demo didn’t make me feel thrilled about having the system reserved…it actually made me think about canceling my reservation.
     While I haven’t canceled my reservation, I think I’ll make a decision over the weekend as to whether or not I’ll be picking up the 3DS day one.  I’m more interested in the AR games that are included with the system, than any retail game, so at this point it looks like purchasing the system is the only way, for now, that I’ll get to try the AR games.
     Overall, the 3DS demo unit for me was like drinking a cup of decaf coffee, while thinking it was caffeinated coffee, but not knowing it until later when waking up from the nap it was supposed to prevent you from taking.  I was expecting the 3DS demo unit to provide a positive “Wow” factor for me, but I didn’t get that from my time with the system.

Questions:
     Have any of you found a 3DS demo station, and given it a try?  If so, what do you think about it?  Was the 3D effect what you were expecting, and was it a “Wow, this is awesome!”, or more like mine, a “Wow…this is it?” for you?

You can read some other 3DS impressions from sites I follow, at the following links below:
Nintendo 3DS Demo Tour…with video reactions from “Real” people
The ‘3DS First Impressions’ from Joe Average
3DS and Pilotwings Resort Hands-On Impressions!

If any of you haven’t reserved the 3DS yet, you can still reserve or pre-order the Nintendo 3DS system on Amazon.com, with the links below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B002I096AA&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B002I090AG&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

>Duck the Puck, Again! NHL 2K11’s Hours Debut

March 23, 2011

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Coffee Beans:
     NHL 2K11 was released on August 24, 2010 as a Wii console exclusive, with a MSRP of $49.99.
     NHL 2K11 was developed by Visual Concepts and published by 2K Sports.  The game features online multi-player with Wii Speak support, as well as Wii MotionPlus support.

     The ESRB rating for NHL 2K11 is E10+, or Everyone 10+, with “Mild Violence” being the only content listed for parents to be aware of.  The “Mild Violence” refers mainly to fights that players may occasionally get into during the hockey matches.

     How many hours have Wii owners spent on the ice in NHL 2K11, since it released?  Let’s take a look!

Hours shown are for United States of America Wii owners, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     NHL 2K11 has 3,067 Wii owners reporting their data through the Wii’s Nintendo Channel on its debut, with 210 days reported.

Average & Total Hours Reported:
     NHL 2K11 has 50,509 Total Hours of game-play reported on its debut, with an average play-time of 16 Hours 28 Minutes “Per person” reporting data.

     NHL 2K11’s average play-time per session is just over 1 Hour 42 Minutes.

Sale Rank & Advertised Price:
     NHL 2K11’s Amazon.com sale rank is #1,040, and it is currently selling for $26.27.
     (Sale rank and advertised price were recorded around 7:30PM on 3-22-11)

Review Score Averages:
     NHL 2K11’s “professional” review score average is 62.73%, based on 11 reviews on GameRankings.com.

     NHL 2K11 has a 3.5 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 11 customer reviews.
     NHL 2K11’s customer review score average is 69.09%, when converted to a 100% review scale.  You can see the customers’ review scores in the image below.

     (Review score averages recorded around 7:30PM on 3-22-11)

Odd Bean:
     The cover athlete for NHL 2K11 is Ryan Kesler, who plays for the Vancouver Canucks.  He first joined the Canucks in the 2003-2004 NHL season, and still plays for the team.  He was involved with the NHL 2K series before 2K11 released, when he participated in a motion capture session for 2K10.

Filtered Thoughts:
     While I haven’t played NHL 2K11, I remember reading about NHL 2K11 last year, and I was impressed that the developers included Wii MotionPlus support, as well as online multi-player with Wii Speak support.
     2K Sports announced last year that NHL 2K11 was going to be a Wii console exclusive, while they took a break from developing the game on the PS3 and Xbox 360 consoles, so they could think and come up with ways to redesign the game on those consoles.
     While I was researching information for this post, NHL 2K11’s Wikipedia page said this, “Due to poor sales of 2K11 compared to EA Sports NHL Slapshot, this will be the last hockey game made by 2K Sports.
     There wasn’t a source for that information, it was just provided under the “Reception” section for the game.  I don’t know if NHL 2K11 is the last hockey game specifically for the Wii for 2K Sports, or for all consoles including the PS3 and Xbox 360; I’m going to see if I can get some clarification, and update this post if I do.

Questions:
     Have any of you played NHL 2K11, and if so, what do you think about the game…good and/or bad?  Is it a sports series that you hope 2K Sports perhaps brings back in the future?

If anybody is interested in NHL 2K11, you can see prices for it on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B003FVMQWQ&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  

>Site Note: Coffee with Games’ Reader Points Updated

March 22, 2011

>     I mentioned a few weeks back in my “February Brewed, March Brewing” post that I had updated the way I calculate the monthly reader points, and the reader points for January and February, “should be posted in the next 2 weeks.”
     Well, nearly 3 weeks later, the reader points for January and February have been posted!

     The monthly reader points are a way that I’m hoping to be able to “reward” readers in some way , but it’s something I’ve been working out, and as of now, I’ve settled on a solution…I think!

     So, if the following readers can send me an email to Scott(@)CoffeewithGames.com, with your username in the title line, I’ll reply to it:
     Chuckpebble
     gLitterbug
     WesFX
     Jonath
     Chalgyr

>Time To Unwind! Kirby’s Epic Yarn Data Report

March 18, 2011

>

Coffee Beans:
     We last looked at a full data report for Kirby’s Epic Yarn from data that was recorded on December 6, you can read that full report HERE.
     Since my last report, Kirby’s Epic Yarn was released in Australia, and also in Europe.
     Also since the last report, Nintendo released a financial statement that showed Kirby’s Epic Yarn had sold 1.38 million copies by the end of December 2010.  Of the 1.38 million reported sold, approximately 900,000 of those units were sold “overseas”, being North America.

     How many hours have Wii owners spent in Dream Land playing Kirby’s Epic Yarn, with 149 days reported?  Let’s take a look!

Hours shown are for United States of America Wii owners, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reporting Data:
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn now has 83,036 Wii owners reporting their game-play data, through the Nintendo Channel.

Reporting Player Increase:
     How many more players are reporting their play-time data for Kirby’s Epic Yarn since the December 2010 report?
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn has seen an increase of about 60,415 more players reporting game-play data, since December 6.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours Reported:
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn now has 1,205,283 Total Hours of game-play reported, an increase of 921,945 Total Hours in the last 99 days reported.
     The average play-time for K.E.Y. is now 14 Hours 31 Minutes “Per person” reporting data, which is 1 Hour 59 Minutes higher than its average in the December report.

     Kirby’s Epic Yarn’s average play-time per session is just over 2 Hours 4 Minutes.

Sale Rank & Advertised Price:
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn’s Amazon.com sale rank is #255, and is currently selling for $39.54.
     (Sale rank and advertised price recorded around 1:15AM on 3-18-11)

Review Score Averages:
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn now has a “professional” review score average of 89.53%, based on 40 reviews on GameRankings.com.  This is a slight increase of .08%, over what the “professional” review score average was for the game in early December.

     Kirby’s Epic Yarn still has a 4.5 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, now based on 123 customer reviews.
     K.E.Y.’s customer review score average is 88.78%, when the reviews are converted to a 100% review scale.  You can see the breakdown of the customer reviews in the image below:

     (Review score averages recorded around 1:15AM on 3-18-11)

Filtered Thoughts:
     I still haven’t played Kirby’s Epic Yarn, but our neighbors purchased it and as of 2 weeks ago they were playing through it.  I think we may do a trade, and exchange Donkey Kong Country Returns for Kirby’s Epic Yarn, just for a little while(neighbors, if you read this, let me know if/when you want to trade!).
     I didn’t recall hearing/seeing a commercial for Kirby’s Epic Yarn, and when I searched for one when putting this post together, I found the video below as the only commercial for Kirby’s Epic Yarn.

     If you didn’t see the commercial, I think it’s actually pretty good.  After I watched it, I thought I remembered seeing it, but that would have been back in October probably when it was first uploaded.
     I’m not sure how long Nintendo ran that on television for the game, but I can definitely see that commercial catching a child’s attention, and/or couples with children.

     As for the reported game-play hours, I think seeing Kirby’s Epic Yarn already with more than a million “Total Hours” reported is really great for the game, especially when considering it released with so many other games during the holidays, and considering it doesn’t even have online multi-player or leaderboards of any sort.
     Kirby’s Epic Yarn was Kirby’s first console outing since the N64, and with the game selling more than a million copies relatively quickly, I hope it encourages Nintendo to revisit past games, and explore new ideas with them like they did with Kirby’s Epic Yarn.

Questions:
     Have any of you played Kirby’s Epic Yarn since my last report in early December?  If so, what do you think of the game, good or bad?  If you haven’t played it, are you interested in playing the game?

If anybody is interested in Kirby’s Epic Yarn, you can see prices for it on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B003ZCH7DI&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr  

>Limited Hours, but Not Editions! Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition Data Report

March 17, 2011

>Coffee Beans:
     We last looked at Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition’s data on January 3, when its game-play hours debuted on the Nintendo Channel.
     When Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition was released on December 12, 2010, many perhaps thought(like I did) it was going to be true to its name, and be a one-time “Limited Edition” print, and the game quickly sold-out at retailers after it released.
     A few days after my last report on the game, Wired.com reported that Nintendo was considering a reprint for Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition, and soon news started trickling off different websites and from stores, confirming a reprint release for Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition would hit stores again, this time on March 13(this past Sunday!).

     How many hours have Wii owners spent playing Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition, with 93 days of game-play reported since it released(the first time)?  Let’s take a look!

Hours are for the United States of America Wii owners, not world-wide.

Approx. Number of Players Reported Data:
     Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition now has 38,136 Wii owners reporting their game-play data, through the Wii’s Nintendo Channel.

Reporting Player Increase:
     How many more players are reporting play-time data for Super Mario All-Stars, with 71 more days reported since January 3?
     Super Mario All-Stars has seen an increase of about 21,395 more players reporting game-play data, since the last report.

Average & Total Game-Play Hours Reported:
     Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition now has 246,191 Total Hours of game-play reported, an increase of 185,240 Total Hours since the last report.
     Super Mario All-Stars’ average play-time is now 6 Hours 27 Minutes “Per person” reporting data, which is 2 Hours 49 Minutes higher than its average on January 3.

     Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition’s average play-time per session is now just over 1 Hour 15 Minutes.


Sale Rank & Advertised Price:
     Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition’s Amazon.com sale rank is #35, and it’s currently listed for $38.76 ,new, from a third party vendor.
     (Sale rank and advertised price recorded around 11:45PM, on 3-16-11)

Review Score Averages:
     Super Mario All-Stars’ “professional” review score average is now 71.67%, based on 18 reviews on GameRankings.com.  This is a slight increase of 1.21%, over what the “professional” review score average was for the game back on January 3.

     Super Mario All-Stars now has a 3.5 out of 5 Stars rating on Amazon.com, based on 143 customer reviews.
     Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition’s customer review score average is 74.40%, when the customer reviews are converted to a 100% review scale.

     (Review score averages recorded around 11:45PM on 3-16-11)

Filtered Thoughts:
     When I posted the debut data report for Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition, I ended the post by asking, “Was the collection and disc worth the $29.99, and could you justify purchasing it for a lot more…?”
     The conversation/feedback from two regular readers here, Charlie Chang and The Dread Pirate Guy(click their names to visit their own blogs!), was pretty interesting.
     Charlie started the comments by saying, “I still think that $30 is too high.  I doubt the graphics are improved from the SNES version.  Stuff like this kind of makes me wag my finger at Nintendo.  How many times are they going to hash our the same game on a different system?”
     After I asked The Dread Pirate Guy, “So, you think it was quickly thrown together…for some quick cash during the holidays?”, he replied, “Yeah.  Sadly, I think it was a cheap and ugly cash-in, which is shameful and unnecessary for such a brilliant and industry defining series.”
     If you want to see their full comments, and my questions back-and-forth in the discussion, you can read them HERE.

     As for the game-play data, I think it will be interesting to take a look at the data in another month or two, and see if there is any significant increase in hours reported, and the number of players reporting data, because of the reprint.
     The reprint of Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition was only available for one day during this story’s reported data’s time-frame, so it probably wouldn’t of impacted the data very much.

     While we all have a limited number of hours to game, I guess Nintendo saw how quickly Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition sold-out, and figured “Limited Edition” can always have a new definition, and by reprinting it, I guess they made the first “Limited Edition” not really so “limited”?

Questions:
     If any of you didn’t purchase Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition when it was first released in December, did you find yourself pre-ordering or going out to find it on Sunday when it was released again?
     As I asked in the first report, do you think the “Limited Edition” is worth the $29.99, or should gamers that haven’t picked it up, pass on this until perhaps another Mario “Limited Edition” is released in the future?

If anybody is interested in Super Mario All-Stars: Limited Edition, you can see prices on Amazon.com linked below:
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=coffeew-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B0049DYNNO&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr