Challenging multiplayer, and single player, puzzle style games have made a real comeback during the last generation of gaming, and that seems to be continuing on the Xbox Series X|S and the PlayStation 5. Titles like Overcooked have challenged players for almost half a decade. With next generation consoles launching, Team 17 saw the perfect opportunity to remaster their entire Overcooked library and launch Overcooked! All You Can Eat, a new collection on the Xbox Series X|S and the PlayStation 5.
Overcooked exists in the realm of games meant to challenge friendships, relationships, and more. Few games can be overly frustrating and yet still exhilarating and fun. Overcooked does a fantastic job of balancing the two, but after a few years and multiple releases, is there a place and need for Overcooked! All You Can Eat?
Overcooked! All You Can Eat Details
Platform(s): PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S
Reviewed on: PlayStation 5
Developer(s): Ghost Town Games
Publisher: Team 17
Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
Time to conquer the kitchen yet again
The Onion Kingdom has been overtaken by an ancient edible evil, and it is up to the players to help the Onion King take back his kingdom and defeat this evil for good. You embark on a culinary journey that might be tougher than what Gordon Ramsey can even throw at you. Through hundreds of levels spread across two games, you’ll get to save the kingdom, twice!
While the story behind both titles is silly, and definitely not the reason you buy the game, it does serve the right purpose. Each story offers a purpose to what you are doing, and an over world to explore. As someone who has played puzzle style games in the past that just use endless menus to navigate you through the game, this method of delivery is vastly superior, cliché story and all.
Addictive, at times frustrating, gameplay
In Overcooked, you must master unique kitchens in an effort to earn one, two, or three stars. Every kitchen requires a different food that needs to be prepared, whether that is a pot of soup, burgers with lettuce and tomatoes, or other meals. Every aspect of the plate will require some attention. Meat needs to be chopped before being grilled, and lettuce and tomatoes need to be sliced before being placed on sandwiches.
The concept seems simple enough, and it really is. But the varying kitchen designs and frequently introduced obstacles make maneuvering the kitchen very difficult. Whether working in an area oddly shaped, or on the back of moving trucks, every kitchen has an environmental component you’ll need to overcome, on top of the complexity of the various dishes.
Overcooked! All You Can Eat has some of the toughest game play mechanics of any game. Sure, getting 1 out of 3 stars on a level is pretty easy, but if you are aiming for 2, and even 3 stars, you’ll need to fine-tune your strategy, and that takes work. Frustratingly long, detailed analysis is required to make sure you are maximizing every second in each kitchen. When playing with friends, this is decidedly harder to manage, but ultimately easier to execute. Defining roles in the kitchen will not only keep things organized, it might ultimately lead to a 3 star performance!
Beautifully remastered with outstanding performance
This version of Overcooked is only available on the next generation of consoles, which means Team 17 and Ghost Town Games were able to maximize the hardware to create a stunning title. Overcooked 1 has been totally overhauled to fit into the updated formula used in Overcooked 2. Further to that, the entire collection has been given a 4K 60 frames per second overhaul, which is very noticeable when scurrying around kitchens.
I went back to play some of the original Overcooked on the Xbox One, and it is a night and day difference between the two versions. In the case of the original Overcooked, it was probably the update that brought it up to the Overcooked 2 standards that matters the most, but the 4K resolution looks fantastic. Playing with a solid 60 frames per second is also important, especially when literally every second counts.
While Overcooked! All You Can Eat can be played alone, I found the most fun is when playing with friends, either locally or online. For the first time ever, both Overcooked titles and all their DLC is not only playable online, but has cross platform support as well. That means your friends can be cooking up dishes on their Xbox Series X|S, while you perfect your side of the kitchen on the PlayStation 5. That is pretty impressive.
There really is no shortage of levels to play either. The All You Can Eat collection has both Overcooked 1 and Overcooked 2, along with all previously released DLC and some brand new content. On top of what is already available, friends can work through playing with three brand new chefs, across 7 new kitchens. These are all bundled nicely together in the new story dialogue, “The Ever Peckish Rises.”
This brings the games totals to astronomical levels, considering the price. In total, you’ll have over 200 kitchens to explore, using 1 of over 120 chefs. That’s a pretty good content haul for the price.
Overcooked! All You Can Eat is great fun with family and friends
If you’ve never played Overcooked and have access to a group of friends or family to enjoy the puzzling experience with, Overcooked! All You Can Eat is an easy recommendation. On the other hand, if you have played through some, or all, of the previous titles, reliving the experience in 4K 60 is phenomenal and definitely worth dipping your toes in the Overcooked soup once again!
+ Fantastic 4K resolution with 60 frames per second
+ Additional Content on top of all previously released DLC
+ Ability to quickly restart levels without any wait
– new content is a little bit lacking
OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF OVERCOOKED! ALL YOU CAN EAT
Lasting Appeal/Replayability: 4.5/5