Category: Food and Drink

Sometimes video games like to tie in with food and drink for some reason. I review them, because I can!

Mountain Dew Game Fuel: Stand by for Mangofall edition.

I’ve come back from the dead… and what timing, as it’s that time again…

For those who just couldn’t wait.

Mountain Dew Game Fuel at this point is a standard flavor in the soda’s arsenal, alongside favorites like Code Red and Whiteout. What was once an exotic rarity that I had to hunt at stores left and right to try, is now fairly common. Despite that, I do actually anticipate these “special flavors” each year and see which big corporation threw enough of their weight (in dollars) around to get on the bottles this year.

It’s pretty much tradition on this site for me to cover these unique Game Fuel flavors. I first covered it when they did Halo 4 in 2012. I covered the special “purple drank” flavor to advertise the new Xbox One in 2013. I covered the “fizzy lemonade” special edition (which was my favorite) in 2014, and finally when they did back-to-back Call of Duty promotions with an unremarkable flavor last year.

So who’s on tap this year? Call of Duty for the third year in a row? Battlefield? An unexpected contender like Gears of War 4? Nope, It’s one I never thought I’d see.

20161029_235647

YO HE GOT THE MANGO SENTINEL

EA and Respawn’s Titanfall 2 is the candidate this year, and the special flavor is “a burst of Mango Heat.” Since Citrus Cherry is the de facto standard flavor that’s always available, I no longer need to cover it. But how about the special mango flavor? Does it hold up? Continue reading…

Super Mario 3D Fruit Gummies: Holiday Edition!

For regular readers of this blog, you may have noticed a drastic increase in posts about edible video game goodies over 2015. You’re not the only one. I’ve blogged more about fruit snacks and Red Bull tie-ins than actual game stuff, and that’s not counting my yearly Mountain Dew Game Fuel roundup. It’s actually interesting to see more of this stuff than before, this wasn’t much of a thing over the past ten years. Either that, or I wasn’t paying attention back then.

I didn’t think I’d be making another one of these to start 2016 off. But I thank my mom, my #1 fan, for finding these out of the blue. Or in this case, red:

Mario with the best kind of gift: CANDY!

Mario with the best kind of gift: CANDY!

It’s more of those Mario 3-Dees gummies. I wrote about these last year alongside Plants vs. Zombies 2 fruit snacks, and it seems they’ve taken a holiday theme this time around. I probably should’ve written about these before Christmas, but hey, better late than never, right? 😛

This is almost art. At least, to me.

This is art. At least, to me.

Like before, Mario, Yoshi, Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong all embrace the packaging, with three distinct flavors: strawberry, cherry and raspberry. Thank god there’s no watermelon gummies, just the good flavors in this one. It’s weird to see no green gummies, but they probably would’ve been less than pleasant flavors. Like watermelon.

When I wrote about these last time, I praised how impressive these looked for gummy candies. I lived in a world where younger me would be lucky to find candy that even remotely resembled the thing it’s based on, and not just be some amorphous blob that kinda resembled the product. But I gotta hand it to Au’some for making them look like the iconic Mario characters, like before.

As for the taste… they taste like the flavors advertised. It’s great, because when it comes to candy, those are three flavors I can always get behind. It’s even better when they’ve been sitting in room temperature for the past two weeks I’ve been putting this post off, as they’re nice and soft.. Though, I am baffled by the ingredients on the back mentioning pear juice as an ingredient.

My apologies for the fairly short post to start the new year proper. I’ll definitely have something a bit more meaty to post in the future. But for now, I’m going to enjoy 2016 the best that I can, and write about more interesting stuff, as I have been for the past four years. Here’s to a wonderful 2016!

Mountain Dew Game Fuel: CODBLOPS III Edition.

It’s that time of the year again…

You know it’s time when you see the ol’ kitchen stove…

Mountain Dew gets buddy-buddy with major game developers and makes a fancy Game Fuel dedicated to a major game. This year, Activision gets the choice for the second year in a row, this time for Carl on Duty: Black Cops III – Revenge of the Urkel- er, Call of Duty: Black Ops III.

At this point, Mountain Dew has made the Citrus Cherry a standard flavor. No longer seasonal, you can get the stuff at any time anywhere. I noticed this as I found bottles of the normal Citrus Cherry at a Safeway, rather than the 7-Eleven like I usually do. Since this change, they’ve had various game-related promotions with Game Fuel this year, such as items for Batman: Arkham Knight and Warframe.

At first, I thought Mountain Dew retired the seasonal flavors, which would’ve meant an end to what has become a yearly tradition on my blog. But thankfully that wasn’t the case, as I found the new special flavor in the usual locations.

I’ve written about Citrus Cherry every single year since I started this. It hasn’t changed in taste whatsoever. It’s got a cherry taste with a citrus-y tinge that reminds me of Squirt or similar citrus-heavy sodas. At this point, I’m not even gonna bother talking about that flavor, and skip ahead to the new special flavor for BLOPSIII.

Continue reading…

Video game fruit snacks MK. III: Mario Kart fruit snacks!

Sometimes I can get into a groove and write stuff for weeks straight. Other times, especially during the summer, I get into long gaps where I write at most once a month. Maybe I’ll find some inspiration while grocery shopping…

In addition to buying a fair share of unhealthy things, I found two things I just had to have: One was New York Seltzer, a return of one of my childhood favorites. The other was this item that I couldn’t resist blogging about.

These fruit snacks are NEW! NEW! NEW!

These fruit snacks are NEW! NEW! NEW!

Mario Kart fruit snacks. 2015 is becoming quite a year for video game-related food and drink. First the Mario gummies and Plants vs. Zombies 2 fruit snacks I wrote about earlier this year, then the Destiny Red Bull, now this. Since these are branded by Kellogg’s rather than some off-brand company I’d never heard of, these can only be good.

The cover is taken straight from the recent Mario Kart 8, which makes sense considering its popularity. But unlike the game it’s based on, don’t expect anything not Mario-related in this set. Though maybe they could’ve save that for another series of fruit snacks.

The box I had opened had 3 packages with Mario and 7 with Luigi. THE YEAR OF LUIGI SOLDIERS ON

The box I had opened had 3 packages with Mario and 7 with Luigi. THE YEAR OF LUIGI SOLDIERS ON!

These fruit snacks feature Mario, Luigi, Yoshi, Toad, a Koopa Troopa shell, and the famous Star as our options. All good options, though them making the purple one a regular Koopa Troopa shell instead of the evil blue shell seems like a slight misstep, but this is a fine lineup. At least I can bite the head off Yoshi like the crazed maniac I am.

As for how they taste, they have the typical taste of fruit snacks. I can’t say each character has a discernible flavor, but they taste like your average fruit snacks. At least this time each character applies to a color, which made it easier to get a proper set.

Man, this would've been nice to have around when I was a kid....

Man, this would’ve been nice to have around when I was a kid….

Since these are made by Kellogg’s, on the back of the box has inspirational options for kids to get outside and have fun. I like this idea, but I find it somewhat strange. Like if this was on a box of Corn Flakes or Froot Loops, I could understand. But it’s on a box of somewhat unhealthy fruit snacks. The healthy choices here really don’t work.

Props to Kellogg’s for making fruit snacks based on a recent video game and having them taste good. Then again, it’s really hard to screw up fruit snacks, unless you do what the Angry Birds people did and label them “fruit gummies” in order to do a bait and switch on me. I still haven’t forgotten that one.

Since we’re slowly approaching autumn, it can mean many things, like pumpkin spice everything and the changing of colors. But hopefully I’ll be getting back in the groove of writing more “substantial” stuff in the future. At least, as substantial as it can get for a blog like this, anyway.

Red Bull featuring Destiny and eSports: One unexpected promotion.

I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ve had difficulty at times coming up with good, interesting stuff for this blog. Then I found out some video game is doing some cross promotion with a beverage company. To the 7-Eleven!

Well, that's one way to get people to buy your stuff.

Well, that’s one way to get people to buy your stuff.

Bungie’s Destiny teamed up with Red Bull to partially promote the upcoming Destiny: The Taken King expansion. Unlike the many years where I’ve covered Mountain Dew Game Fuel, this is merely just a rebranding of the existing product to tie in with an upcoming game. Oddly, this is only available at 7-Eleven. It’s weird how 7-Eleven is always the place where I find the dumb video game drink stuff…

I’ve covered video games doing promotions with energy drinks before, like Call of Duty: Ghostchasers III did with Monster Energy back in 2013. You can read about that here. But Destiny is a different beast. It’s as if Halo and Borderlands had mixed together into a soup that’s somewhat edible.

I played Destiny during the early beta days, back when all that was available was Earth and that one brief time where they had a mission on the Moon. I liked the idea because not only did it have standard linear missions, but it also had free-roaming exploration akin to most MMOs. But it didn’t seem like something I wanted to jump into immediately since a lot of people were pretty down on it not long after release. Though I figure the game still has a modest following if Bungie and Activision are throwing advertising dollars at Red Bull for this.

Continue reading…

More video game snacks, featuring Mario and Plants vs. Zombies 2!

A few years ago, I had found out there were gummy candies based off the then hot new property Angry Birds: Space, which I reviewed here. I decided to give them a try and was firmly disappointed how they tasted like gummy bears and not actual fruit snacks. Then I had found out thanks to a store called Rocket Fizz that there were several variants of this dumb candy.

Clearly I'm not gonna try them all, the first box I had was bad enough!

Clearly I’m not gonna try them all, the first box I had was bad enough!

Struggling with what I wanted to write about lately, I decided to hop into a nearby Dollar Tree in Portland. In addition to the rare sight of Pibb Xtra in bottles, I found these two gems:

Because video game candy can spur ideas more than anything else can.

Because video game candy can spur ideas more than anything else can.

Super Mario 3-Dees gummies and Plants vs. Zombies 2 fruit flavored snacks. Score! Because unhealthy things like candy and soda will always fuel my blog in some way.

I’m gonna review both of them today, in spite of them not having anything to do with one another except both of them are candy. This will be fun.

One of these things is not like the others...

One of these things is not like the others…

Super Mario 3-Dees have the distinction of being 3D shaped, which I guess means they look more like the real thing and not freaks of nature like most fruit snacks look like. The bag comes with four flavors: Strawberry, Watermelon, Orange and “mixed berries,” with four of the characters from the famed Mario franchise being featured: Mario, Yoshi, Donkey Kong and… Diddy Kong.

They still do the seal of quality?!

I wouldn’t put Diddy Kong as being part of the Mario franchise unless you wanna count his appearances in Super Smash Bros. or Mario Kart. Perhaps Luigi, Peach or even Bowser would’ve been better choices. Oh well, at least this is an official Nintendo licensed product, complete with the Nintendo not-quite-Seal of Quality on the back of the bag.

Continue reading…

Mountain Dew Game Fuel: Press X to Chug Edition.

Hey, it’s that time again. That time where a certain beverage advertises a certain video game. Just in time for it’s release…

Shamelessly stolen from a Mountain Dew Wiki. Because of course that exists.

Yep, Mountain Dew Game Fuel makes its return. I’ve written about these in years past (here are my reviews of the 2012 and 2013 flavors), and I had totally forgotten that they were doing it again until very recently. Reviewing Game Fuel has become a tradition on this site, and I would be remiss if I forgot to cover this year’s model.

This year, Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is our big sponsor, after Microsoft got dibs last year, forcing Activision to settle with Monster Energy cans with Call of Duty: Ghostbusters instead. You can read about that, and my virgin experience with Monster Energy here.

Something old, something new. It seems to be Mountain Dew's MO these days.

Something old, something new. It seems to be Mountain Dew’s MO these days.

So we have two flavors this time round: Citrus Cherry and Lemonade. I’ll make it quick on the Citrus Cherry, since it’s the same flavor as previous years: It tastes like Mountain Dew mixed in with a cherry tinge and gives an unexpected citrus aftertaste. I used to drink Squirt religiously, but I can barely tolerate drinking a glass of Citrus Cherry because of the excess citrus kick.

Continue reading…

Mountain Dew Game Fuel: DRM-free Xbox One Edition.

Guess what’s back? I’ll give you three guesses, first two don’t count.

This time we’re doubling up on the special promotions!

Yes, returning for the fifth time, Mountain Dew and Doritos collaborate with a video game company for a limited edition soda. This time around, Microsoft comes back to the well for the third time, advertising the forthcoming Xbox One with Mountain Dew Game Fuel. This time, we’re given not one, but two flavors of the wonderful special edition drink. This is the third year in a row that the specialty drink has been available, which quashes my previous theory that they’d only push this out every other year, as they did in the past. Looks like this might be a yearly thing now.

While I was at PAX, Mountain Dew was fairly prominent at the show. Spread around the convention hall were QR codes that you could scan in to redeem points, either for small prizes like Game Fuel or to win a chance to get an Xbox One early. Alas, while I did scan codes like a goof, I did not redeem a single point, which probably screwed me out of getting Game Fuel three months early. So I got this stuff at a 7-Eleven like an ordinary person who buys promotional drinks advertising video games.

The two flavors are both infused with Dew, one with a burst of Citrus Cherry, the other with a charge of Electrifying Berry. These nicknames are so extreme that I wonder if I’ve jumped back into the ’90s. On each bottle is a promotion for a forthcoming Xbox One game (Forza Motorsport 5 on the Citrus Cherry, Kinect Sports Rivals on the Electrifying Berry), and have codes to enter at every2minutes.com for a chance to win various Mountain Dew and Xbox One prizes. Including a tacky-looking Mountain Dew-branded One.

Citrus Cherry is a repeat of last year’s flavor, so I didn’t do a taste test this time. For those who are curious how I thought about it, here’s the link to last year’s entry. The short version is that it tasted like Mountain Dew with a tinge of cherry and a punchy citrus aftertaste that I wasn’t expecting. So this time around we’re just gonna try the new Electrifying Berry flavor.

This looks like the kind of stuff you would mix cough syrup in to make purple drank.

Continue reading…

Trying Monster Energy: featuring Call of Duty: Ghosts!

Lately I’ve noticed how much video games are penetrating our food and drink. Last year I had covered Mountain Dew Game Fuel, which made its triumphant return. While I haven’t found this year’s model of Game Fuel yet, I found something just as interesting:

Until recently I didn’t realize those are meant to be claw marks in their logo and not giant spikes.

Monster Energy has decided to team up with Infinity Ward and Activision to advertise Call of Duty: Ghosts on cans of Monster. Ah yes, Call of Duty: Ghost Dad, the tenth major installment in the Call of Duty franchise. Unfortunately my interest in Call of Duty waned years ago, mostly in part due to how over-the-top Modern Warfare 2 got, along with releasing a new game every year just made me fall behind. As of this writing, I still haven’t played Black Ops II. Thus, I am not at all hyped for Call of Duty: Ghosts of Sparta.

Continue reading…

Mountain Dew Game Fuel, Halo 4 Edition.

Yeah, you read that right. I’m going to review a soda on this blog. Why, you may ask? Well, because I can. But also because Halo 4 fever is slowly dying and being replaced by Call of Duty: Black Ops II fever, so I gotta squeeze this in now while it’s still relevant. No one’s gonna care about this in a month’s time.

I like to exaggerate the name of this stuff. Imagine if it was said by some obnoxious 90s announcer.

So, this is the fourth time that Mountain Dew has done the limited “Game Fuel” thing to advertise whatever hot new video game was on the market. The first time Game Fuel was introduced was in 2007 for Halo 3, then re-released in 2009 for a World of Warcraft: Cataclysm and most recently, last year for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. I honestly expected them to skip this year, judging by the “every other year” cycle, but since Halo started the unique limited flavor/marketing tie-in for Mountain Dew, they might as well do it again for the newest installment involving a Master Chief and some Halos.

I was never a big Halo guy. I played a leaked prototype of Gearbox Software’s PC port back in 2003, and eventually bought the game the following year. I thought it was interesting and kinda fun, but hardly the mind-blowing revelation that gamers were making it out to be. Halo 2 was a dull, monotonous corridor shooter I’d rather forget, and all I remember of Halo 3 was me and and a friend co-oping it in two long sessions one time. I even got the Anniversary edition of Halo: CE and only finished a level or two before moving on.

Still, I can’t say I hate Halo, it just never really grabbed me outside of the soundtrack and occasionally its multiplayer. Maybe it’s because I was anti-Xbox ’til about 2006. Forgive me, I was still an oblivious teenager.

Continue reading…