Archive for the 'Games' Category

Rock Band With Little Rockers

We had a fun-filled weekend with the kids. First up, on Friday night I dusted off the old Wii Rock Band controllers, put the game in no fail mode, and had a good old time with Trey on drums on Paige clapping along.

Little Rockers

Little Rockers

I spent many long nights playing Rock Band with friends in Denver, but I don’t think it has been out of the basement once since our move to Cincinnati. Fortunately most of my talent was retained and I picked up all instruments again with little difficulty.

Trey On Guitar

Trey On Guitar

I know that Trey enjoyed playing along for a few songs, and I even caught him playing around with one of the guitar controllers the next morning. Though the controllers did find their way back to the basement shelves later that morning, I’m sure it won’t be long before we get them back out again.

Giant Jenga

My crafty in-laws are always up to something. Yesterday they built three giant Jenga sets. Making one is really quite simple. You just have to cut 2×4’s into 10.5″ segments. Each game requires 72 pieces, so over 200 pieces when making three sets! Fortunately there were enough hands available to cut the pieces, sand each one, and then stack them up.

Playing A Game

Playing A Game

Once the work was complete we played a team game and my team came out victorious! The rules are just the same as the smaller version, but playing it is a lot more exciting. When the tower finally decides to come crashing to the ground it does so very slowly and makes a ton of noise. Building your own set shouldn’t cost very much, provided you have the necessary tools.

KanJam – The Ultimate Disc Game

It seems that nearly every year there is a new game I see being played on the west side of Cincinnati. This past Sunday I headed to my in-laws house for an Easter party and while there I discovered KanJam. Like many other backyard games this one features teams of two standing on opposites sides from each other. A Frisbee is thrown from one player toward the can on the opposite side where their teammate can attempt to deflect it to hit the side of the can or even into the can itself.

Points are scored in the following way: 1 point for a disc that is deflected into the side of the can. 2 points for a direct hit on the outside of the can, without a teammate deflection. 3 points for a disc that is deflect inside the can. And an automatic victory for a disc thrown through the slot in the front of the can, without a deflection. Those are the basic rules of the game, though there is a more lengthy rule list.

Sets are available online for $40, or as my brother-in-law did, you can easily make your own using two garbage cans for less than $30. I lost my first and only game of KanJam, but I hope to play again in the future.

Turkey Day

Happy belated Turkey Day. I spent most of the holiday weekend at Deer Creek State Park with my wife’s family. Originally we had planned on coming back Friday, but we were having such a nice and relaxing time that we decided to stay another night and drive home on Saturday. The first two nights we stayed in cottages, and the last night we slept in a room in the lodge. Our weekend was filled with hiking, biking, running, swimming, eating, drinking, campfires, and board games.


One of the many highlights of the trip was sitting down to play some Monopoly. I hadn’t played this game in years, and it took the four of us a few turns to get all the rules figured out again. I still think we made up some things as we went along. In the end I found myself as the sole survivor and winner of the game. My hotel complexes on the orange and red properties proved to be the deciding factor, though the runner-up nearly knocked me out with his hotels on Boardwalk and Park Place. I forgot how much fun (and how long) a game of Monopoly can be.

New Super Mario Bros.

With the break in TV shows, Kim and I have been playing the New Super Mario Bros. game on Wii.  We’ve probably only played two or three hours total, after all of our recent travels, but it’s definitely a fun game. So far I’m pretty impressed with the difficulty of the game-play. Even with all of the new power-ups and moves, the new enemies and bosses are pretty difficult to beat. Fortunately it seems as if players get unlimited continues, at least it seems that way as we approach ten continues.  We haven’t made it past the second world so far, even after spending all of last-night there.  It was pretty frustrating, but I hope we will give it a try again soon.

The Beatles: Rock Band

I finally bought The Beatles: Rock Band over the weekend.  After only playing it for a couple of hours so far, I must say that it is just as great as I originally thought it would be.  I’ve only unlocked about a dozen of the songs so far, but have already played most of them more than once.  The songs actually seem to be harder than other songs from past Rock Band games, perhaps it’s the lack of chords and quick switches between notes.  All I need now is to finally purchase another guitar controller, and possibly some additional microphones.  For the first time in Rock Band history, this game allows for background vocals and harmonies.  I think it would be pretty cool to sing along while rocking out the guitar or drums.  I don’t think this game will be leaving the Wii for awhile.

Geeks Take Over Rackhouse Pub

There’s a new bar in town!  The Rackhouse Pub opened about twenty days ago, adjacent to the Stranahan’s distillery. We decided to check it out last night, along with a bunch of other folks, as part of a monthly Denver Tweetup. Essentially a Tweetup is an announced location for users of Twitter to gather for socializing and such. True, it sounds pretty nerdy, but you have to remember that I’ve met many of my good friends online before ever meeting in person. Times are a-changin’.

Anyway, I was really impressed with the Rackhouse. They have a great selection of Colorado beers, all for a great price. It may have just been a special last night, but beers were just three and four dollars a piece, and this is for great beers, like Breckenridge, Odells, and New Belgium, just to name a few. We were also pleasantly surprised by the food. The white bean chicken chili that Kim ordered was excellent, as was the whiskey chicken sandwich I had. And though we didn’t try the pizza, all of those looked great as well.

We also stuck around to take part in our first ever Geeks Who Drink trivia night. I have to admit that I was a bit intimidated by the idea of bar trivia, as it can often be really difficult. However, we managed to make it all the way up to first place at one point in the game, and that was with very little cheating. In the end we finished way back in eleventh, but it was still a good time, and perhaps something we should try again. After all, I am a geek and I do like to drink.

The Rackhouse Pub on Urbanspoon

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Rock Band

I guess it was widely known that there was going to be a Beatles version of the Rock Band game, but I didn’t know it until today. Being a big fan of the Beatles music, I couldn’t be happier to hear this news. According to this new website, it will be released later this summer on 09-09-09. And they are supposedly going to have new instrument controllers modeled after those played by John, Paul, George and Ringo. All of this comes after I recently realized the Rock Band Music Store was finally available on the Wii and I’ve been doing my best to catch up on downloading the available tracks. It won’t be long before I have the entire hard drive full.

The Space Game

I just found this cool web based game called The Space Game. It reminds me of playing Dune 2000 with my brother back in high school. It took me some time to get passed mission 6 and I am just about to start on mission 9. Hopefully it helps kill any time that remains in your Friday workday.

Wii Wish You A Merry Christmas

It was definitely a Wii Christmas for us. My brother got us a Wii Fit, which was delivered last week and we’ve already started using. I love all of the balance games, which I really think should help strengthen my ankle even more. Also, shortly before we left Denver for Cincinnati, Kim gave me Rock Band special edition including the game, one guitar, a set of drums, and the vocal mic. We busted that out of the box for a few quick songs before leaving town. Kim’s family also got the same thing, and I definitely played my fair share of the game with our new band, The Three Wisemen. My family also got us some more Wii games, including Rock Band 2 and a Shaun White snowboarding game to play on the Wii Fit board. I haven’t played those yet, but you can be sure it won’t be long before I do.