When Mtn Dew started using a variety of sweeteners to bring down the sugar levels in its newer limited edition flavors, I was fine with it. Instead of only high fructose corn syrup, the brand used a mixture of HFCS, sucralose, and acesulfame potassium.
As someone who enjoys diet soda, I didn’t mind the sweetener switch, but others shook their fists at Mtn Dew, and I just shook my head at them.
But now I’m wondering if I should shake my fists at Mtn Dew and shake my head at myself because I’m not sure I like Mtn Dew’s new Amp Game Fuel that uses the sweetener combo mentioned above.
According to its website, the new line was developed in partnership with pros and elite amateurs to create the first beverage designed just for gamers. It’s formulated with ingredients that have been shown to improve accuracy and alertness — caffeine (90 mg) and theanine. So I guess one could say it’s like the Gatorade for gamers.
The cans themselves features a tactile grip and resealable tab (more on that later). There are currently four flavors — Cherry Burst, Berry Blast, Tropical Strike, and Original Dew Destruction. Okay, actually, it’s just called “Original Dew,” but I felt bad it didn’t have a cool video game sounding name, so I gave it one.
While Amp Game Fuel’s name is a combination of other Mtn Dew lines, the actual beverage is more like another, Kickstart. They have similar consistencies. Both are not as syrupy and carbonated as the original soda, making them easier to drink.
As for how they taste, most of them remind me of other Dew flavors I’ve had, but diet versions of them because they have an artificial sweetener aftertaste. Drinking the Original Dew version is like chugging on a Diet Mountain Dew. The cherry one, which isn’t like a Diet Code Red, teeters on the line between medicine and beverage, which makes it my least favorite of the four. The yellow one has a nice tropical vibe that seems to be a combination of pineapple and lime. The blue one, while I know it’s berry flavored, at times reminds me of cotton candy. Because of that, it ended up being my favorite of the bunch, slightly ahead of Tropical Strike.
To be honest, when I first tried them, I didn’t care for them, and I was shaking my fist at Mtn Dew. But, because I bought a 12-can variety pack from Amazon and it doesn’t have a Costco-like return policy, I had to drink them again. Doing so made me like them a little more, even the cherry one. But they’re not good enough that I can guarantee I’ll repurchase them.
But what about my accuracy and alertness?
I’m not a gamer, but I am a writer, and accuracie and afertness are tools I need while writing and editing. Did Amp Game Fuel improve them? Sure, but I didn’t notice any difference from what I usually drink, which is coffee or whatever energy drink is on sale at 7-Eleven.
What I’m more impressed with is the resealable plastic tab. It’s simple to use and does an excellent job of preventing the carbonation from fading. It also makes me feel as if I’m flipping up the head of a Transformer with hydraulic sound effects. But the treehugger in me is wondering how recyclable the aluminum can is because the plastic tab doesn’t come off easily. The idea of these cans messing with recycling centers makes me worry.
If you’re a gamer and want to improve, this will not help you as much as in-game purchases will. If you’re a hardcore Dew fan who hates all the ace-k and sucralose going into your Dew, you will definitely shake your fist at Amp Game Fuel.
Purchased Price: $19.99
Size: 12-can variety pack
Purchased at: Amazon
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Original Dew)
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Cherry Burst)
Rating: 6 ouf ot 10 (Tropical Strike)
Rating: 6 out of 10 (Berry Blast)
Nutrition Facts: (1 can – all flavors) 90 calories, 0 grams of fat, 180 milligrams of sodium, 24 grams of carbohydrates, 23 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of protein.