Kitchen Insanity

Overcooked is a 1-4 player(couch co-op only) cooking game, with crazy kitchen designs. You're tasked with cooking the dishes as they're ordered and getting them out of the kitchen.

Story

The game opens up by teaching you how to make salad. You need to do this in order to feed the Ever Peckish, who is currently destroying the world. As the level ends, you're pulled back in time, by a talking onion and a dog named Kevin, to learn to cook and save the world.

Mechanics

Kitchens

Each of the different chapters in the main campaign has a different theme to the kitchens you work in, such as ice or space, which comes with it's own set of mechanics. Each of these mechanics changes how you work with the kitchen and with your fellow players to complete your orders.

Recipes

There are different types of foods that can be ordered throughout the course of the game: soup, salad, pizza, etc. It starts out fairly simple and you only have one type at a time, but each type can be one of multiple different recipes, such as tomato or onion soup.

Orders

During each level you'll start getting orders for the different recipes. You have a certain amount of time to get the order out of the kitchen properly, otherwise you lose points. You gain points when completing an order, and while missing an order takes away points, you still have another opportunity to complete the order for some points.

Cooking and Cleaning

Once you have your order and you know the recipe being used, you'll have to actually cook the dish to be served. This mostly consists of chopping an ingredient, putting it in the correct type of pot or pan on a heat source. You'll then need a plate to put it on. In most kitchens you'll also be in charge of cleaning the plates. You'll have to take them from next to where you send out orders and dump them in the sink.

Scoring and Opening Levels

Each level has a set of scores to get 1, 2, or 3 stars that is displayed before the level begins. The game tracks how many stars in total you've earned. Each level also has a star requirement in order to unlock it. It starts out fairly low, but you'll quickly start running into levels where you'll have to go back if you're not 2-3 starring most levels.

Tips

  • The kitchen always moves. If you can remember this you'll do much better in the game.
  • Split up tasks as much as possible. Only having to focus on one task makes it easier in the long run to keep track of where orders are.

Final Thoughts

In a world where couch co-op is much more rare, it was awesome to see a game like this. There are plenty of ways to completely mess things up for your partner(s) in crime, but it feels really good when you get a good flow going and get the full 3 stars for a particular level.

4/5

Game Design Deep Dive with the Games Designer

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