Published on June 22nd, 2012 | by Shawn Long, Features Editor
Order Up!! Review
Platform: Nintendo 3DS eShop
Publisher: Ignition Games
Release Date: June 21st, 2012
Review Notes: GAMINGtruth received a game token for review purposes.
Cooking games have become an interesting category ever since the Cooking Mama series started on the Nintendo DS. The inclusion of a touch screen allowed for a more interactive experience, and it created a whole new plethora of games that would be somewhat boring if played by a conventional controller. Order Up!! was originally released in 2008 of the Nintendo Wii, and is now available on the Nintendo 3DS via the eShop. But is this a cooking game still worth experiencing?
Order Up!! is a fast-paced cooking experience. You start by choosing a male or female chef and then are then thrust into a fast food restaurant taking orders for waiting patrons. This is mostly a tutorial to help you get acclimated with the controls, which consist of doing gestures on the touch screen. You “lower” the fries into the grease but sliding down, “flip” your burgers by doing a half circle, and so forth.
For the most part the gestures work well, although I did notice that things such as “grating” cheese, which is a diagonal motion, did sometimes seem to fail me. It seems that you have to do some of the motions slowly, which in the fastpaced world of cooking, seemed to not quite fit in. For the most part however, the controls were working well, and you will be cooking double orders in no time as you progress through the game and take on different restaurants.
One of the things I really enjoyed about this game was the pacing. Almost RPG-like at times, once you are done with the tutorial you are placed in a struggling resturant that is now yours, and you must bring it to prominence. You have a main menu hub that allows you to read the newspaper to hire staff to help, buy new equipment, or have your restaurant cleaned. A map screen allows you to visit places to get secret recipes or spices to add to your food. Customers have a spice preference, such as salt or pepper, and choosing the right one will lead to bigger tips. The more money you have, the more things you can do, so it all leads to a very engaging experience.
You don’t simply just let the food sit while cooking either, you have to watch a meter that shows you how well the food is coming along. Wait too long, and you will have a kitchen fire on your hands. I know all of this sounds very silly in practice, but it actually is a lot of fun. Way more fun then it probably should be. I am in practice a terrible chef, but in this game I feel like a culinary master who cannot be stopped. Customers are at my mercy and I must cook them the greatest meal they have ever had so they come back and give me more money so I can restock my restaurant.
Graphically the game is serviceable, but nothing to write home about. The character models do get recycled quite often for the customers, yet every one has a bit of personality to them. I specifically enjoyed your typical 50-year-old red-haired female waitress that works for you at the first resturant, as she was something straight out of a movie. The sounds and sizzles are all acceptable, but I did notice that the game in general was very quiet, even with the sound turned all the way up. This is a bit annoying as I couldn’t hear some dialouge without using headphones.
Order Up!! is a game that is a lot of fun even though it shouldn’t be. After long sessions of it, I would find myself wanting to play again to further myself as a master chef. The balance between realism and fun was very well done, and as stated before, the RPG-style pacing makes for a perfect game to keep wanting to come back to. It stays fresh longer then most cooking games due to the constant growth of you as a cook and the restaurant you work in, and it just leads to a very fun experience. Minor gripes aside, this is a fantastic addition to the Nintendo eShop and worth a play for anyone interested in cooking games, fun games or RPG games.
+ Engaging gameplay
+ Excellent pacing
– A few motion gestures don’t work well enough
– Sound is a bit too low.