Welcome welcome once again to your, mostly, monthly pairing of video games and craft beer. We missed a couple of months here at the end of the year for various reasons, but we’re back to regularly scheduled content now! Anyway, this month I wanted to focus on games I played over Xmas break way back in the way back. Some of my very favorite gaming memories were during that glorious period when school was out, the weather was cold, and I had nothing but time to hang out with my cousin and play whatever new, or old for that matter, games we had. I especially loved this time since I didn’t have a Sega Genesis and he did. As with every post this year, the focus is on locally brewed Jersey beer. The pairings might not be as in-depth as other posts, but it’s okay because it’s Xmas right? So, without further ado I humbly present five classic games paired with five New Jersey beers.
T&C Surf Designs and Kane Head High: Oh the hours spent just trying to figure out what the hell we were supposed to do in this game. Eventually, we got some of it and even managed to pull off some moves in the surfing section. It was frustrating but fun much the same way I feel about grapefruit. I don’t love grapefruit and am often frustrated by its presence in beer. Head High from Kane does display notes of grapefruit but the rest of what’s going on is so good that I don’t really mind. Plus, it’s relatively low alcohol so if you are making a night out of gaming, you can drink a bunch and still be able to play.
Streets of Rage 2 and Spellbound Palo Santo Porter: I’ve talked about my love of Beat ‘Em Ups before and SOR2 is one of my all-time favorites. Countless hours were dumped into this game over weekends and breaks from school. It’s the type of game that is at once action packed and rewarding of patience. You hit a zen-like level while playing. I feel the same way about Spellbound’s Palo Santo aged Porter. It’s a big, flavorful beer that rewards patient sipping with new depth and layers of flavor. Putting these two together would make for one hell of a night.
Dick Tracy and Magnify Low Visibility:Dick Tracy is one of my all-time favorite properties and the Genesis game let us play one of my very favorite ways, lives or levels. This method of gaming means that you play until you beat the level or lose a life. Dick Tracy was an arcade-style side scroller where you earned points for avoiding certain things, and battled all of Big Boy’s henchmen level by level until a final showdown with the big, well, boy himself. Low Vis is perfect for this since it’s only 4.8% ABV which means you can play your level, drink one down, and be ready to go for your next turn.
Tekken 3 and Cape May Brothel Madam: Cape May Brewing Company may be one of the more underrated breweries in New Jersey. They consistently put out tasty beers with many bordering on phenomenal. Tekken 3, while universally loved, may be a bit underrated in the pantheon of fighting games itself. Pairing a fighting game with a beer is a bit tricky as there isn’t usually a ton of downtime. A sour ale is perfect though as you can keep coming back to it between rounds to appreciate how it changes as it airs out.
Trojan and Nale House Leaf Peepin’: Alright, this is about as Jersey-focused as I can get. Nale House Brewing in Medford NJ is tiny. So tiny, in fact, that they haven’t started canning or bottling yet. However, their size does not indicate their quality. NHBC is putting out killer beers that are not to be overlooked. Leaf Peepin’ is their Brown Ale, a style that’s a bit under the radar but fantastic when done right. So too is Trojan, a game Kris and I talked about on the Stone Age Gamer Summer Series. Overlooked and often forgotten in Capcom’s long history, Trojan is a game you should play. And Brown Ale is a style you should drink, especially this one. (Expect more from Nale House in the coming year)
So there it is. A roundup of five New Jersey beers and five classic games to end our year. I truly love each of the examples presented here and hope you get a chance to check them out. The coming year will see a continued focus on Jersey beer seeing as how this state is cranking out some truly fantastic stuff. If you’ve made it this far please take a moment to like and share this post. And don’t forget to follow me on twitter and instagram, @geekadedan, for more beer and gaming nonsense. Here’s to another year of great beer, great games, and great times. Prost!