Archive for the ‘2013’ Category

June, July, & August Brewed! Coffees Consumed & Games Played

September 2, 2013

Coffee Beans
As I mentioned last week, I took July off from posting and worked a bit behind-the-scenes on a few things, as well as had some fun finishing up the Beans’ Star Wars May the 4th video from this year. If this is the first post you are seeing in a while, here are two posts from June and one from the end of August I want to highlight:
1) It’s Official – Wii’s U.S. Nintendo Channel, Forecast Channel, News Channel & more taken offline.
2) Dear Nintendo of America…
3) Ripstone “thrilled” about the Wii U price drop, and 2DS

While I didn’t post anything in July and just a little at the end of August, I did find some time to play games during those months and of course, I was consuming lots of coffee, as usual. Brew yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look at what games I have been playing and coffees I have been drinking during June, July, and August!

Coffees Consumed
In June and July, there was basically only one coffee we brewed up, and it was the Beaumont Coffee Classic Roast. I had mentioned in the “May Brewed!” post that this is the lowest priced coffee blend we have purchased, and we still find it enjoyable.

I did also consume a good number of the Keurig K-Cups in July, when I visited family and friends on a quick trip out of town. My mom has a Keurig Coffee maker, and lots of Keurig K-Cups that she keeps stored in a Keurig K-Cup Storage Drawer. I probably went through a 10-20 K-Cups on my trip, as well as having some regular coffee brewed as well.

In August, we brewed up two different coffee blends. The first blend was Maxwell House Gourmet Roast, followed by the Beaumont Coffee Classic Roast.

Games Played
Here’s the “Instant Coffee” list of games I played in June, July, and August: Call of Duty: Black Ops II, Mutant Mudds (PC), Trine 2: Director’s Cut, Kirby Mass Attack, Kung Fu Rabbit, Super Metroid, Mutant Mudds Deluxe, F-Zero, Kirby’s Adventure, Toki Tori 2, Donkey Kong, LEGO City Undercover, Super Mario World, and Pure Chess.

Instead of breaking down each individual game that was played over the last several months, I’ll highlight and talk about a few of the ones I spent the most time with.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II is my most played game on our Wii U, and will probably have the “most played” title for a long, long, long time to come. Why is it my most played Wii U game? Because of Black Ops II’s online multiplayer, coupled with the fact it has Off-TV Play. Being able to have a show playing on Netflix, while playing matches in online multiplayer on the Wii U GamePad is how I have played the majority of my matches in the game.

Mutant Mudds Deluxe released for the Wii U eShop on June 13th and I was planning on buying it the day it released, but was fortunate enough to win a copy of the game! If you’re wondering how I won a copy of the game, you can read about it and some of my thoughts on the game, HERE. If you have never seen any gameplay footage from Mutant Mudds Deluxe, the following video is of Bean 1 beating the first level using the GamePad’s Off-TV Play feature.

Kung Fu Rabbit was our first Wii U eShop game to actually purchase, and not one we either won in a contest or received directly from the developer. A few things were pretty ironic in the month after it released in early May. One of our family members actually had just gotten two rabbits as pets, and we didn’t know about it until late May. Then one day in late May/early June, my phone buzzed and it was one of our neighbors letting us know that there was a rabbit outside our house, and had been pretty much all day. I had known about Kung Fu Rabbit releasing, but didn’t really look at it until the two rabbit incidents. When I saw it was only $5, I decided to purchase it and give it a try, thinking that Bean 1 might enjoy it as well. While we haven’t beaten it yet, we have completed a good number of levels (I think two complete worlds), and Bean 1 is able to finish some of the levels on his own. If you haven’t seen any footage or gameplay of how Kung Fu Rabbit plays (it’s a platforming game), here’s the eShop trailer for the game:

LEGO City Undercover was one of the gifts to me from Mrs. Coffee and the Beans this year for Father’s Day. The opening cinematic I think is very well done, in typical LEGO game humor, and I have enjoyed riding and running around the city so far. While LEGO City Undercover doesn’t have any local (or, online) multiplayer that Bean 1 and I can try, Bean 1 does enjoy driving (and crashing) vehicles around the city, and he is learning to follow the pathway points to the next mission objectives in the game. From my early impressions of the game, I think this is a great choice for parents with younger children that might be looking for a more kid friendly/family friendly open world game. It also has at least one coffee reference in i

Pure Chess is scheduled to be releasing later this year for the Wii U and 3DS, but you can currently get it on the PlayStaton 3 and PlayStation Vita, and as of last week you can now download the game for “FREE” on iPhone, iPad, and Android type devices. Mrs. Coffee has an eReader tablet device and I downloaded Pure Chess to it last week, and have really been enjoying it. If you enjoy chess, or have ever been interested in it, I would highly suggest downloading Pure Chess.

So, from June until now, I have had four new games added to our Wii U library: Kung Fu Rabbit, Mutant Mudds Deluxe, LEGO City Undercover, and Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate which isn’t even opened yet. Mutant Mudds Deluxe was the most played over the last few months out of all of those, though I have enjoyed my time with the other two new Wii U games. As always, if you own a Wii U feel free to add me to your Wii U’s friend list. My NNID is Coffees.

Questions
Have any of you purchased or had new games added to your video game library over the last several months, and if so, are you playing any of them on a regular basis?

Also, did any of you find yourself brewing up new coffee blends during the last few months, like I did with the Keurig K-Cups on my trip out of town?

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May Brewed! Coffees Consumed & Games Played

June 3, 2013

Coffee Beans
It’s already June, and that means E3 is right around the corner and I’m sure this will be a busy month with video game news. If you perhaps skimmed here occasionally during May, here is a recap of some of the posts from the month you may have missed, but possibly find interesting:
1) Do you enjoy FPS games and ever wonder how much FPS games on the Wii are/were played? If so, you may find the Conduit 2 official Nintendo Channel data report interesting, HERE.
2) Are you a Star Wars fan? Then you may find it interesting what the Wii’s “least played” Star Wars game is, according to the average hours reported “Per person” in the United States, HERE.
3) What is the best Metroid game of all time? I don’t know because I haven’t played all of them, but Super Metroid is regarded pretty highly by many, and you can now buy it on Wii U’s Virtual Console until June 13th for just 30 cents. If you wonder how many hours you might expect from the game, check out Super Metroid’s official U.S. Nintendo Channel data, HERE.
4) The Wii U now has two Batman games that you can buy. One is Batman: Arkham City Armored Edition, a Wii U launch title, which my neighbor has played and really enjoyed on the system. The other is LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes which released last month for the Wii U. If you’re wondering about how many hours you can get from the game, you can read the LEGO Batman 2 Nintendo Channel data report for the Wii version, HERE.
5) Did you skip Donkey Kong Country Returns on the Wii, but are perhaps interested in it for the Nintendo 3DS? Are you curious as to how many hours you might expect from the game? You can see the average hours reported for the game, “Per person”, in its official Wii U.S. Nintendo Channel data report from last month, HERE.
6) Did you not own a Wii, but do own a Wii U? I think one big benefit of the Wii U is its backwards compatibility with Wii titles. If you own a Wii U and have a Wii Remote and Nunchuk, you might be interested in the Super Mario Galaxy games. While I only played the original, you can see how many hours you might be able to expect from Super Mario Galaxy 2, HERE, in last month’s Nintendo Channel data report.

Now, what were two new coffee blends I consumed in May, and what was our most played Wii U game during the month? Brew yourself some coffee, let’s take a look at what games I played, and coffees I consumed during May.

Coffees Consumed
May was back to being more “normal”, than April was. In April, we only brewed up one coffee blend during the month, but in May we brewed four blends, plus I had an iced coffee drink as well.

Here’s the short list of the coffees I consumed in May:
1) Maxwell House Gourmet Roast
2) Puroast Dark French Roast
3) Maxwell House Dark Roast
4) Beaumont Coffee Classic Roast
5) Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Coffee

The lowest priced coffee we have purchased…

The Beaumont Coffee Classic Roast was the first completely new coffee blend for us, and Mrs. Coffee purchased it for us from ALDI. It was their store brand coffee blend, which made me wary of it before we even opened it. While I have purchased store brands of other items, we had never tried it with our coffee blends before. The container she purchased was 33.9 OZ (over 2 pounds!), and like the Maxwell House blends she normally buys, it said it can make “…UP TO 270” cups of coffee. So, if I (we) didn’t like it, we would have a backup supply of coffee for a while.

The container even had a coffee roast guide that put this blend as a “MEDIUM” roast coffee, while letting us know the range for the coffee blends is: MILD, MEDIUM, MED-DARK, or DARK. The real question though, is how did it taste?

I was very surprised by it, in a good way, because it had a good solid flavor for a medium roast coffee. If you like your coffees more dark roasted, this might not be for you; but, if you are cheap (I think Merriam-Webster wants my picture for the word’s definition update next year) and enjoy a wide range of coffee blends, I would highly suggest giving this one a try. Not only was this the lowest priced coffee blend Mrs. Coffee has found for us yet (only $5.49 for it!), but it surprised both of us by not being a weak blend. We enjoyed it so much, that after we finished the first container in May, Mrs. Coffee bought us another one that has now started June off for us as well.

This cup image was altered to make it look like my drink,
without cream and/or sugar. Yes, it’s sad, I know.

The second new coffee blend I had in May, at least “new” in a while, was the Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Coffee. This actually was a mistaken coffee order, but I decided to give it a try anyway. We had gone out for ice cream at a Baskin-Robbins location, which just so happened to be a Baskin-Robbins/Dunkin’ Donuts joint location. We asked the employee to add a medium coffee to our order, but with the hustle and bustle of juggling multiple customers, he heard “Medium iced coffee”. He asked if I wanted room for cream and sugar, and after I picked myself up off the floor from laughing, I kindly said no, and told him he could be a stand-up comic. (Only part of that previous sentence is the actual account of what happened.)

So, how was the iced coffee drink? Surprisingly, very strong. I don’t drink iced coffee beverages very often, and actually I can’t remember the last time before this Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Coffee that I had one. If you don’t like strong coffee though, you should definitely leave room for cream and sugar in this one. If you do like your coffee blends strong though, this might be something you can enjoy during the hot days of summer that are probably right around the corner.

Games Played
The following “Instant Coffee” list doesn’t contain all of the games I “played” in May, as I was volunteered to play some by Bean 1, or I would hop on some to play for just a few minutes to help him out if he was having trouble. One of those games for example, was Fluidity, which he plays from time-to-time. While I would help him get through certain sections, I wouldn’t play the entire level/levels.

The “Instant Coffee” list of games I played in May is: Kirby’s Adventure, Kirby Mass Attack, New Super Mario Bros. U, Rayman Legends Challenges App, Tank! Tank! Tank!, Toki Tori 2, Nintendo Land, Trine 2, Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed, Mario Kart Wii, Mario Kart DSNew Super Mario Bros. Wii, and Super Mario 64. Instead of breaking down each individual game like I did last month, I’m going to talk about just a few them in a little more detail.

First, what was our most played Wii U game out those listed? It’s kind of interesting, but between myself and Bean 1, Kirby’s Adventure was the most played game on our Wii U in May. If you missed the video in last month’s post, the following video is footage of Bean 1 playing Kirby’s Adventure on our Wii U:

Bean 1 has really been enjoying Kirby’s Adventure, and Kirby Mass Attack on his DS even more. If you have never played a Kirby game, just from my time with both Kirby’s Adventure and Kirby Mass Attack, I would easily recommend both of them. If you own a DS and/or 3DS, I would highly suggest finding a copy of Kirby Mass Attack, because of the amount of content the game has and the fact you should be able to find it for under $15 now.

Nintendo Land received some decent play-time in May, not only from Bean 1 and me, but also from a cousin of Bean 1 who visited us for a few days. She had never played it before, and she really enjoyed playing Animal Crossing: Sweet Day the most. It was interesting, because she’s a few years older than Bean 1 and she described the mini-game as, “It’s like Easter, and hunting for eggs.” When she said it, I thought it was an interesting description, and thought that Nintendo could have even released some free DLC Easter Bunny costumes for it, and changed the candies to Easter eggs to help promote the game and Wii U during Easter week.

I unlocked Trine 2’s exclusive Wii U level back near the end of April, but I didn’t play it in April. I finally played and beat the Wii U’s exclusive level, the Dwarven Caverns, in the middle of May though. There was one spot where I encountered an audio glitch, and I haven’t played back through the level to see if it happens every time, but it was a bit odd hearing it happen and makes me wonder if perhaps it was missed in QA testing, because it was a new level? The last level is challenging in certain spots though, with trying to figure out the mechanics of certain switches and equipment to progress through it, and I did enjoy my time playing through it despite the weird audio glitch.

While Super Metroid was my only “new” game purchase in May, I still haven’t played it yet, but I didn’t want to pass up its awesome sale price. As for the other games I listed above, if you have any specific questions (even thoughts) about any of them I played in May, feel free to ask me in the comments section below, or by emailing me at Scott(@)CoffeeWithGames.com.

Questions
Did any of you buy any new games in May, or perhaps any new systems like the Wii U Basic Set that I highlighted in a post?

Also, what games did you find yourself playing in May, and did you enjoy any new coffee blends in the month?

May the 4th, was it with you? What is the Wii’s least played Star Wars game? Official Nintendo Channel data report.

May 6, 2013
That’s no moon, but that might be Bean 1.

Coffee Beans
May the 4th, was it with you? If you didn’t sleep all day, I hope that your Saturday, May the 4th of 2013, was an eventful day! While there were no Star Wars video games played in the Coffeehouse on May the 4th, there was at least one Star Wars movie watched (Episode III), and Bean 1 and Bean 2 ran around in the backyard for a little while with some Star Wars gear. (Which, one of them may, or may not, be in the picture above. It probably depends if you ask me, or Mrs. Coffee.)

Speaking of Star Wars video games, there were at least six retail Star Wars games released for the Wii and at least three Star Wars games released on the Wii’s Virtual Console service, from my count. We own three of the Wii retail Star Wars titles, but only two of them have been played.

The game-play “Force” (if you will!) was very strong behind the Wii Star Wars retail titles, with each of them now having more than one million “Total Hours” of game-play reported. But, which Wii Star Wars retail game does the “Force” appear to be the weakest with, resulting in the lowest amount of replay value? Brew yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look at the least played Star Wars Wii retail game based on the average hours reported “Per person”.

The Brew
Star Wars The Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels is the Wii’s least played Star Wars game “Per person”, according to the data reported through the Nintendo Channel. The game was released on November 11, 2008, and it was developed by Krome Studios and published by LucasArts. It received an ESRB rating of “TEEN” with “Fantasy Violence” listed as the only content for parents and gamers to be aware of.

Not a day’s worth of lightsaber training at the Jedi Academy?

As the image above shows, the reported average is 6 Hours 42 Minutes “Per person”, and when compared to the other Wii Star Wars games this makes Star Wars The Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels the least played Star Wars game on the system “Per person”.

Just because the game has the lowest reported average “Per person” out of all the Wii Star Wars retail games, doesn’t mean Lightsaber Duels hasn’t been played by a lot of Wii owners though. The game now has approximately 275,065 U.S. Wii owners with game-play data reported via the Nintendo Channel, which is over 65,000 more U.S. Wii owners with data reported than 2 years ago.

For comparison to other Wii games, Lightsaber Duels currently has more U.S. Wii owners with data reported than Endless Ocean does, which released before it; but it has less Wii owners with data reported than Animal Crossing: City Folk, which released just a few days after it in 2008.

Did critics and customers enjoy swinging their Wii Remotes like lightsabers in the game though, considering it has the lowest average play time “Per person” of all the Star Wars games on the system? Well, the game has a “professional” critic review score average of 54.89%, based on 18 reviews on GameRankings.com. The game’s customer review score average is 72.53%, based on 83 customer reviews from Amazon.com. The difference between the critic and customer review averages is probably a reflection of the game being enjoyed by a much younger audience, probably its target audience, which might not care if everything is pixel perfect in a game.

Caffeinated Thoughts
I haven’t played Star Wars The Clone Wars: Lightsaber Duels, though I have watched some of The Clone Wars cartoons and the movie. If you haven’t seen any footage from Lightsaber Duels, the video below is the trailer for the game:

I have enjoyed several Star Wars games over the years, including The Force Unleashed on the Wii, but one disappointment in recent years was there not being an exclusive Wii Star Wars game that used the Wii MotionPlus accessory. Knowing that Lightsaber Duels released a few years before the Wii MotionPlus accessory was and it attempted to translate Wii Remote swings to lightsaber swings, I’m surprised there wasn’t a sequel to the game using the Wii MotionPlus accessory.

I kept thinking there would be a Wii Star Wars game released with extremely accurate lightsaber game-play, like what Ubisoft did with Red Steel 2, but there was never one that used the Wii MotionPlus accessory. Considering Microsoft was able to get Kinect Star Wars, and used that game to heavily promote/sell Kinect units, I’m surprised (or, maybe I’m not at this point?) that Nintendo didn’t pay to get a Wii Star Wars game released that used the Wii MotionPlus accessory.

If Nintendo is wanting to sell a few more Wii MotionPlus controllers to Wii U owners, I think one great way would be to announce an exclusive Wii U Star Wars game that uses Wii MotionPlus controls for the lightsaber actions in it; I would probably buy it day one. While I really do enjoy the Wii U and think being able to play games on the GamePad is great, I think it’s unfortunate that we will probably not see a Star Wars game released with Wii MotionPlus controls now, because of Nintendo’s move away from “motion controls” as they were on the Wii.

Questions
Have any of you played Lightsaber Duels, and if so, what did you think about the game? Does it do a good job of translating Wii Remote swings to lightsaber swings?

Do you think it’s unfortunate that Nintendo never had a Wii Star Wars game released that used Wii MotionPlus controls for the lightsaber controls? Also, did any of you play any Star Wars video game(s) or watch any of the Star Wars movies for May the 4th this year?

You can see some Star Wars related games and items on Amazon.com below!

March Brewed – Coffees Consumed & Games Played!

April 3, 2013

Coffee Beans
March saw several new Wii U releases, the most in quite a while actually. I mentioned some of the new Wii U games that released in March, HERE. While I ended up not buying any of those, yet, all of them have landed in my current “Wish List”.

If you only skimmed posts or stopped by only occasionally in March, here’s what you might have missed:
1) One reason I find Call of Duty: Black Ops 2’s multiplayer addictive, HERE.
2) What is the most played Mega Man game on the Wii, based on Total Hours reported? You can read that report, HERE.
3) Why you should never give up in a Black Ops 2 online multiplayer match, HERE.
4) What is the Wii’s most played Need for Speed game, based on Total Hours reported? Find out HERE.
5) What are current Wii U trade-in values, for both the Basic Set and Deluxe Set? Find out HERE.
6) A new feature, done twice in the month, Movie Magic Monday! If you like dragons, you might like this one. If you’re a fan of Alice in Wonderland, you might find this one interesting.
7) ZombiU has been patched! You can see the full patch notes and details I gathered on the ZombiU patch, HERE.

Now, what games did I get around to playing in March, and what coffees helped me make it through the month? Start brewing yourself some coffee, and let’s take a look!

Coffees Consumed
We brewed and consumed four different coffee blends in March: Maxwell House Dark Roast, Maxwell House Gourmet Roast, Puroast Dark French Roast, and Medaglia D’Oro Caffé.

The Maxwell House blends were our go to coffee blends for the majority of the month, like February, with us finishing off the Maxwell House Dark Roast early in the month, and the Maxwell House Gourmet Roast helping us make it through the end of the month.

The Puroast Dark French Roast and Medaglia D’oro Caffé were coffees we started brewing and consuming in February, as I wrote about last month, and they helped us get through the middle of March when the Maxwell House Dark Roast started running low.

With the amount of coffee we consume in a month, the Maxwell House coffees are the best bargain and the best tasting coffees at their prices that we have found. While I enjoy the smaller batches of coffee like the Medaglia D’ora Caffé, being that we still brew so much coffee in a month, we are still sticking with the larger containers of coffee (usually the 240 cup containers).

Games Played
The quick Instant Coffee list of games I played in March is: Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, Super Mario Bros., Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed, Assassin’s Creed III, Nintendo Land, Rabbids Land, Trine 2: Director’s Cut, World of Goo, Super Mario 64, Punch-Out!!, and Super Mario World.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 – It was all multiplayer for me in March, as it pretty much was in February as well. This was my most played game in March, and I enjoyed recording and putting together a few videos of multiplayer battles. If you didn’t see either of the multiplayer videos I put together of some of my Black Ops 2 matches, here’s one you might enjoy if you like FPS matches that are close:



Assassin’s Creed III – I have had this Wii U game sitting around since December, thanks to GameFly, and had made very little progress in it until last month. I decided to try and get more accomplished in March, and was decently successful. While I haven’t beat the game, and I don’t think I’m even close to it yet, I was able to put a few more hours into it in March. I’m enjoying the story and setting of the game so far, even if I have only found one coffee reference so far…

CoffeeInGames.com, my next site!?

Nintendo Land – Bean 1 and I played this together in March. He enjoyed the Mario Chase and Luigi’s Ghost Mansion games a lot, and I played a few rounds of Donkey Kong’s Crash Course and Battle Quest while he watched as well.
Punch-Out!! – I have written that I enjoyed Punch-Out!! on the NES. When Nintendo put this one on sale for 30 cents on the Wii U’s eShop, I purchased it the first day it became available in March. Yes, we did own it on our Wii’s Virtual Console already, but that didn’t stop me. I have enjoyed playing a few rounds on the Wii U’s GamePad already, while having shows streaming on Netflix in the background. I’m not sure if I’ll beat this one, as the last two boxers seem to really destroy me, but it’s already been worth the 30 cents I bought it for (again).
Rabbids Land – How many hours does it take to unlock all the mini-games in Rabbids Land? Well, from my experience with the game so far, more than 10 hours. I have played the game 10 hours 25 minutes so far, and I still haven’t unlocked all of the mini-games yet. I’m not sure if perhaps I need to play the game with an additional human player, before unlocking the last two mini-games, or if I just haven’t been fortunate enough to experience them when playing the board game rounds by myself. Once I unlock the rest of the mini-games, I plan on doing some additional coverage for the game though.

My current Rabbids Land play time.

Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed – I played this early in March, and later in the middle of the month as well. I was over on Destructoid checking out their community blogs section early in March, when I saw a post that was advertising a Friday Night Fights community event, and this was the Wii U game they were playing. I decided to hop on and give it a try, and played a few races on just the GamePad while the Beans were running around. After I played (and lost) in the Friday Night Fights event, I decided to play the game a bit more later in the month, and started working my way through the single player campaign. I was able to unlock more tracks and power-up certain drivers (mainly Sonic), in just a few short hours. I really, really like the way the races are setup with the driving, flying, and boating incorporated into each one. While I haven’t unlocked all the levels yet, or leveled-up one character all the way, I am looking forward to putting some more time into this one eventually.
Trine 2: Director’s Cut – While I beat Trine 2 back in January, I still haven’t unlocked everything in the game. So, in March I played through a few more of the levels attempting to find items I had previously missed. While I did complete one level with items I had not collected before in March, I still haven’t unlocked the extra level, but I am still enjoying the game when I play it.
World of Goo – Bean 1 and I have been playing this on the PC, and we have made it to Chapter 4, several times, but he still enjoys deleting files and creating names on new ones and starting from the beginning. Bean 1 is pretty good at understanding the idea behind the game, and can complete many of the levels in the game.

A Mario inspired castle? It passed the Bean 1 sight test!

Super Mario 64 – Bean 1 randomly one night near the end of March said, “I’m going to play Mario 64.” It was random, because he hadn’t mentioned the game in a while, but sure enough he sat on the couch and played it for nearly an hour straight that night after mentioning it. This has been a game we have made slow progress in over the last year, and I hope that we can eventually beat it, as it was one Nintendo 64 title I enjoyed when I played it originally on the console, but I never beat it.
Super Mario Bros. – This was played on our Wii, as we still haven’t done the Wii to Wii U transfer for Virtual Console and WiiWare titles yet. I did beat this one in March, which I still find extremely challenging to do, but rewarding as well. Bean 1 really enjoys watching me play through the latter levels in the game, and was a big encourager in the final level when I was getting killed by the hammer brother right before Bowser. He would say, “Daddy, if you think you can, you will!”
Super Mario World – This is another one started by Bean 1, and then ends up with me being volunteered to play and beat certain levels. Bean 1 is pretty good though, and can be Yoshi’s Island 1 and Yoshi’s Island 2 in it, as well as some of the other levels. It’s usually the Castle levels that give him a bit of a challenge, but he is improving and I enjoy watching him play it and also listening to him direct me to make sure that I take the “secret exit” in the appropriate levels.

Questions
Did any of you pick up some of the new Wii U games that released in March (maybe all of them?!), and if so what do you think about what you have played? If you didn’t purchase any of the new Wii U releases in March, did you find yourself playing any other game(s) in the month?

And as always, were there any coffee blends that helped you make it through the month?

February Brewed – Coffees Consumed & Games Played

March 4, 2013


Coffee Beans
February was a busy month, but I found my time dominated by one game in particular. I mentioned in last month’s “January Brewed” post, that I like the idea, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”, and with March starting up, CoffeeWithGames should get back to a regular posting schedule of a couple of posts each week.

While I didn’t post much in February, I did put an unhealthy amount of time into playing a game. If you read the few posts I did in February you probably know that game was Call of Duty: Black Ops II on the Wii U. I even created probably the oddest Black Ops II video yet, at least not just game related, and shared that in my “Drones! What are they good for? Fox News’ Charles Krauthammer & Black Ops II?” piece. If you missed the piece and the video, you can see the video embedded below:

March is upon us, and with it new games (and maybe coffees) are waiting in the wings, but what coffees did I consume and games did I play in February? Brew yourself a nice pot of coffee, and let’s take a look!

Coffees Consumed
Maxwell House returned in February as our default coffees of choice, but there were a few more that were brewed up during the month.

The default Maxwell House coffees we brewed up were the Maxwell House French Roast and the Maxwell House Dark Roast. We still have some of the Maxwell House Dark Roast, and it has gotten March started off well for us, but the French Roast was finished earlier in February. Both the French Roast and Dark Roast are very similar in flavor, neither has a strong bitter flavor, but each provides a nice bold flavor.

Between brewing the Maxwell House coffees, we enjoyed several other coffee blends in February. One of those blends was the Kona Blend Coffee, which was/is sealed up in the cabinet and used occasionally. It’s a a whole bean coffee, that I actually received it last year for my birthday, and I’ll grind up some of the beans when we’re running low on the Maxwell House, or if we run out. It’s more of a mild roast coffee, but is a good backup coffee to have hidden away.

How much caffeine is too much caffeine?

Another coffee blend brewed up in February was a new one that we had never tried before. It was the Puroast Low Acid Coffee, Dark French Roast blend. The idea behind this coffee is that it provides a great tasting coffee, but has a 50% lower acidity than other coffees. The verdict? To me, and Mrs. Coffee, this coffee seems to be missing the “bite” that makes coffee, well, coffee. While our blend was the “Dark French Roast”, which is supposed to be one of the strongest coffee roasts, it had a very light flavor. It actually reminded me of the Starbucks Blonde Veranda Blend we have brewed in the past, which I called “an extremely light blend”.

If you like lighter tasting coffees, then I would recommend giving the Puroast Dark French Roast blend a try, but you should know that it probably won’t taste like your typical French Roast coffee you have had before.

The last, new, coffee blend we brewed in February was Medaglia D’Oro Caffé Espresso roast. It’s definitely a stronger blend, as you would probably expect with “Espresso” in its name. I enjoy it, and Mrs. Coffee makes sure to sweeten her’s up, but it is definitely has the “bite” that I expect from darker roast coffees.

Games Played
The quick, “Instant Coffee”, list of games I played in February is: World of Goo, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Mutant Mudds, Balloon Fight, Call of Duty: Black Ops II, and Trine 2.

Bean 1’s stats from a World of Goo level.

World of Goo – I made it through the first four worlds and when I get to the last level I’m not sure what exactly I’m doing in it. Bean 1, in typical fashion, deletes the save files quit often, so I have played through several of the levels many times. Bean 1 beats levels on his own, quit often, and even just completed a level from the World of Goo WiiWare demo we have.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past – We are continuing to make slow progress in the game, if the save file can last more than a few days before getting erased! Bean 1 still plays this, and runs around pretty well in the game and even knows how to switch between inventory items now, and I’m always amazed when he beats random enemies running around. Perhaps once Bean 1 is out of his erasing save files mood, we can beat the game. Until then, we’ll probably just keep playing randomly and having fun.

Mutant Mudds – Has Mutant Mudds Deluxe released for the Wii U yet? I didn’t think so! Bean 1 still opens this up randomly on the PC, and will play through different levels. I, of course, will end up playing through (or attempting to) a few of the levels, with him watching what to do.

My first effort in Balloon Fight.

Balloon Fight – My first eShop purchase, and it cost me a whopping 30 cents. This game is part of Nintendo’s Wii U Virtual Console Trial Campaign, where they are offering certain NES games for just 30 cents, for 30 days (one game, every 30 days). Balloon Fight is definitely simple enough and plays well, but I find the sound effects are a bit on the tinny side. I haven’t made it very far in the game, but I did post my first “high score” to the Miiverse community. Was it worth the 30 cents though? Absolutely.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II – Unhealthy. Unhealthy. Unhealthy. What was the cause of lack of sleep for me during February? Was it two little Beans running around, blogging late into the nights, or creating my next multi-million dollar invention (not sure where I misplaced the first)? No, the lack of sleep in February was because of Black Ops II on the Wii U. After getting the Beans in bed, I would fire up the Wii U and play Black Ops II on the GamePad late into the night, usually with some random Netflix series playing in the background. If any of you own a Wii U and are playing Black Ops II often, please add my Nintendo Network ID, Coffees, to your Wii U Friend List. I’ll add you back and perhaps we can play some matches of Black Ops II together. 99% of my matches are in Team Deathmatch, though this last weekend I was playing a lot of Headquarters because of the Double XP being offered in it.

Trine 2 – I’m still playing back through Trine 2’s levels, trying to collect all of the items and hidden objects in each level, so that I can access the last level. Trine 2 was on sale (still is in Europe) during February, down to just $14.99, and now there is a demo for the game on the Wii U’s eShop as well. If you have been wondering how Trine 2 plays (and looks), definitely download the demo to give it a try. If you own Trine 2 on the Wii U, have you beaten it and unlocked the last level?

Caffeinated Thoughts & Questions
With a new month upon us, I’m actually looking forward to a few games releasing later this month, though I will probably only pick up one initially. While I’m interested in LEGO City: Undercover, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, and Need for Speed: Most Wanted, I’ll probably only be grabbing Pandora’s Tower when it releases.

Had Nintendo of America actually done their job during Wii’s main life-time, and brought already developed games to the U.S., I probably wouldn’t be diverting potential Wii U funds, to purchase a Wii game. U.S. Wii owners (and Wii U owners) can purchase Pandora’s Tower later this month for just $39.99, thanks to XSEED Games.

Were there any coffees you consumed in February that were new blends, or just stick with your regular blend(s)? Did you play any games in February that you found particularly addicting, like I did Black Ops II, and are there any games you are looking forward to that are releasing in March?

January Brewed – Coffees Consumed & Games Played

February 7, 2013

Coffee Beans
January. Another month, but the one that starts off a new year. With January rolling around, I decided to take the month slower, and do some planning. I like the idea of, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” a lot, but more on that later.

With January now history, what coffees did I consume and games did I play during the month? Can you guess (without looking!) what my most played game was during the month? Brew yourself a nice cup (or two) of coffee, and let’s take a look!

Coffees Consumed
The Folgers Black Silk coffee started us off for the New Year, but didn’t last us very long since it was a smaller container of coffee that we used most of when we went out of town in December. The Folgers Black Silk is a “Dark” roast coffee from Folgers, and if you enjoy bolder coffees, you would probably enjoy it.

After the Folgers Black Silk ran out, we went to our typical 200+ coffee cup container, that being the Maxwell House Daily Brew. It’s more of a medium roast coffee, on the lighter side, but not as light as the Starbucks Blonde Veranda Blend we have brewed in the past.

After we ran out of the Maxwell House Daily Brew, I opened up one of Mrs. Coffee’s Christmas gifts to me, the Café Bustelo Coffee Espresso. It was finely ground, to a powder, dark roast coffee. I believe it was originally aimed at the Hispanic market, after researching it a bit, but in recent years has started trying to grow its brand. I’m not sure if Mrs. Coffee knew about the coffee before buying it, or if she saw it at the store browsing and decided to get it for me on a whim. The coffee is definitely a stronger blend, and we enjoyed it while it lasted.

The last coffee we brewed in the month was Maxwell House French Roast. We have brewed this multiple times over the last few years, as it is one of the regular Maxwell House coffees purchased by Mrs. Coffee. While the description for it is “Medium Dark”, I still tend to feel this is more of a “Medium” roast. Being a “Medium” roast is not a bad thing, and we really enjoy the coffee, but it’s just that if you like the typical French Roast “Dark” roasted flavor, this isn’t as strong as you would probably expect.

Games Played
Here’s the “Instant Coffee” list for the games I played in January: Trine 2: Director’s Cut, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, New Super Mario Bros. U, Mutant Mudds, Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed, Nintendo LandSuper Mario Bros.Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, Mario Kart Wii, Assassin’s Creed IIIRabbids LAND, Rayman Legend Demo, ZombiU Demo, and World of Goo.

Mushrooms, a staple for platforming success since the 80s?

Trine 2: Director’s Cut – Last month I reported I had finished the main campaign, and since then I have been going back through the game attempting to find all the hidden pieces in the levels, and also attempting to unlock the Wii U’s exclusive level (I think). With more than 40 hours in the game, I still haven’t found everything just yet, but am hoping that I can finish it all up this month. If you have a Wii U and Trine 2, please add my Nintendo Network ID to your friend list, Coffees, and hopefully we can play a few levels online sometime.

Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 – Multiplayer. Multiplayer. Multiplayer. I put many hours into Black Ops 2’s multiplayer in January, mainly Team Deathmatch battles. As I commented on the “Black Ops 2 Wii U patch available.” story, I have not had any issue finding a match to join when I hop on playing Team Deathmatch battles. If you enjoy the basic Team Deathmatch battles in FPS games, and particularly the Call of Duty games, I can easily recommend you adding Black Ops 2 Wii U to your collection. I still greatly enjoy using the GamePad to play off just of it, while using our original Wii to “watch” a show on Netflix.

My Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 combat record, as of January 30th.

New Super Mario Bros. U – I beat the single-player campaign in January, after only about 12 hours of play. Now, I didn’t finish the campaign with all the hidden Star coins, but right now there are a few things about New Super Mario Bros. U that I like, and a few things that I don’t like. I’ll give you one of each for now. I like that the game-play is solid as ever for a Mario platformer, and that is a positive. I don’t like that the GamePad cannot be used in multiplayer, except in Boost Mode. That screams of programming laziness and nickel and diming of consumers to me. I can only imagine Christmas morning in some houses, opening up the Wii U and New Super Mario Bros. U with one Wii Remote, only to find out you actually need two Wii Remotes to play multiplayer. It basically makes New Super Mario Bros. U a $140 game to play local multiplayer, because you can’t use the GamePad for it (see: the controller that came with the console). We have multiple Wii Remotes, but the fact that one of us couldn’t use the GamePad for multiplayer and we had to unsync one from the Wii to the Wii U was a bit odd, and makes me wonder why they didn’t just program the Boost Mode to be activated with a button press from the menu, still allowing the GamePad to be used for regular game-play.

Another version of “CoffeeWithGames”, and why physical is better than digital…sort of.

Mutant Mudds – I wrote last month that I had “completed the main levels of Mutant Mudds on December 31st.” Well, on January 8th I tweeted, “@JoolsWatsham @mutantmudds Just finished a little something. “Brewing” reference for the win! #100% #WorthEveryPenny”. I had completed every single level in Mutant Mudds. The V-LAND levels. The G-LAND levels. The CGA-LAND levels. All of them, finally! Even after completing them, I am still being voluntold by Bean 1 to play the game some. Until Mutant Mudds Deluxe releases for the Wii U later this year, and Mutant Mudds 2 sometime later (maybe for the Wii U?), I’m sure I’ll be playing levels randomly on the PC version, and maybe even some on the iOS version I grabbed for free last week on Mrs. Coffee’s iPhone.

“…something new brewing.”? Coffee? Has to be coffee!

NBA 2K13 Demo – I downloaded this demo from the Wii U’s eShop, and played through 2 or 3 demo periods. I lost all of the demo matches I tried. This is not an arcade NBA Jam type basketball game, but I imagine that once you learn the ins/outs of the game-play elements and setting up passes and shots, that it could make for an interesting and realistic simulation of the sport. I have never really gotten into the NBA video games, other than NBA Jam in the 90s, so I can’t see myself picking this up just yet, but I am glad to see Wii U owners with the option to pick it up.
Nintendo Land – This wasn’t played much in January, but I did play a bit of the Yoshi’s Fruit Cart mini-game and made some decent progress in it; the farthest I had made it yet. I still want to finish the Battle Quest and the Metroid Blast mini-games, but I think this will be a slow-burner game over the next several months.
Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed – I still haven’t played this one much, but what I have played of it, I have enjoyed. Early in January, Jeremy (from NintendoFuse.com) and I hopped online in the game to try out the online races. He beat me soundly in every race, but the game ran well. We even experimented with the Wii U Chat, but didn’t have much fortune getting a solid connection (we found out it apparently requires a higher speed broadband connection, than just the lower end speeds that some ISPs offer). This is a game I’m hoping to get through this month, and possibly provide some video coverage of as well.

Super Mario Bros. – We are still using our Wii. We use it almost daily for Netflix, and we still use it quite often so Bean 1 can play some Virtual Console games when he wants. Super Mario Bros. was one of those games in January. While he attempts different levels, if he gets stuck in a level by falling in a hole or hitting Goombas too many times, I’m quickly voluntold to beat the level. We didn’t finish the game in January, but I did notice something in one of the levels that reminded me of a scene from Finding Nemo
Super Mario Bros. 3 – This is another Virtual Console game I played randomly with Bean 1, or with him watching. I really hope that Nintendo figures out the Wii U Virtual Console quickly, and gets as many of the older Mario titles up on it sooner, rather than later. We didn’t beat Super Mario Bros. 3 in January, as our play sessions usually don’t last very long, but we make decent progress when we play…until Bean 1 resets the save file and we usually have to start over from the beginning. I’m still amazed that this game was released on the NES, and I think it is just one of the many games helps with the “game-play over graphics” debate.
Super Mario World – Another Virtual Console game, and another one Bean 1 would randomly select and I would end up being told I needed to play it. We beat a few levels at a time, like the other Virtual Console Mario games, and then usually move on to something else.
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past – This is another game that Bean 1 requests to play, or watch me play. He actually gets around the world pretty well, and can attack and kill enemies, and knows where the secret entrance to the dungeon is and how to get into it. We were making decent progress in the game, completing the first dungeon, but then Bean 1 figured out the magic disappearing file act, which he thought was absolutely hilarious. Basically he would delete every single file and say, “It makes it disappear!” This happens quite often, so we have started over from the beginning several times. I’m hoping his magic act will stop soon, and perhaps we can make good progress in the game, because I don’t ever remember beating this one when I was younger!
Mario Kart Wii – This is one Bean 1 requests to play occasionally, and it’s one he enjoys and can now even complete races; sometimes finishing 1st! I actually enjoy the music in some of the levels, A LOT. Moo Moo Meadows is probably one of my favorite levels because of the music in it, at least right now. Bean 1’s favorite level right now is probably Wario’s Gold Mine, because is has “train tracks” throughout the level, which are really the tracks for the mine carts.

Every good assassin needs coffee?

Assassin’s Creed III – What happens when you join GameFly trying to get one game, and they don’t have it? Well, they automatically send you the 2nd game in your queue. This is how Assassin’s Creed III ended up in our Wii U collection, and is still around. I haven’t played it much, just one night really, but I did enjoy what I played of it. There has even been a coffee reference already spotted in the game (seen in the image above), which of course makes this a GOTY contender already, because finishing games doesn’t matter around here, just how many (or any) coffee references are in the game.
Rabbids LAND – I started playing this in January, and so far have put a little over 5 hours into it. This is definitely a different Rabbids mini-game experience from the Wii titles, because of the board game setup. I haven’t had the chance to play it with Mrs. Coffee yet, or Bean 1, so I don’t know how the multiplayer adds to the craziness of it all, but I have enjoyed the ability to play it using just the GamePad with off-TV play.
Rayman Legends Demo – I downloaded this demo when it become available on the Wii U eShop, and have enjoyed it sporadically, as has Bean 1. He has almost completed one of the levels in the demo, twice now. He is close, soooo close, like one jump away from beating it close; but usually gets hit by an enemy right before making the jump.
ZombiU Demo – My neighbor has my copy of ZombiU right now, but I did download and completed the demo for the game. I was interested to see what Ubisoft used from the game for the demo, and I was a little surprised by their choice, but it definitely gives players a good overall feel for the game I think. If you are interested in ZombiU, but not sure about the game-play and style, the demo for the game will give you a good idea of what you can expect.

World of Goo – I decided to try and get Bean 1 interested in another PC game, other than Mutant Mudds. I have had World of Goo on my Steam account for a while now, but never really played it. I fired it up the last day of the month, and showed Bean 1 what it was about. Every time I would beat a level and the container would fill up with goo and the Goo Balls at the end, he would say, “It’s coffee!”; which the goo does have a dark coffee appearance, so I can’t blame him there. We have completed 3-4 levels so far, and if I install it on our PC like Mutant Mudds (I have the file from a Humble Bundle I think), then I think Bean 1 will start playing it more.

As for what my most played game in January was, that would be Black Ops 2 (or II) for the Wii U, as the image below shows!

1. and 2. were not games!

Caffeinated Thoughts & Questions
As always, if any of you have a Wii U feel free to add my Nintendo Network ID, Coffees, to your friend list. If you have any questions, or thoughts, about the games that I played during January feel free to share them below in the comments section, or even email them to me if you prefer.

Were there any coffees you consumed in January that were perhaps new for you, like the Café Bustelo Coffee Espresso blend was for me? Also, what games did you find yourself playing in January, and did any of them stick out to you particularly more than others?