Title: BurgerTime Party!
Publisher: Marvelous! (XSEED)
Genre: Adventure, Puzzle, Arcade
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Release Date: 8/10/19
Price: £17.99 – Rapid Reviews was very kindly provided with a review code for this title.
There is nothing quite like the excitement of Arcade gaming. Slurping Pepsi, scoffing candy, and plunging quarter after quarter into the cabinet, trying to conquer a frustratingly difficult game. Trying to impress your buddies and input your high score, with the most creative rude word you can create with just 3 letters – those were the days! Ok, maybe I’ve indulged a little here, and I certainly didn’t grow up on the set of Stranger Things, but there is something magical about 80’s nostalgia, and capturing the feeling of Arcade gaming in a – modern-day reimagining is a tough task. Read on to find out if this Developer spoiled the secret sauce for BurgerTime Party!, or if they created a real whopper….
Let me take you back to 1982 when Data East, a Japanese Developer, released BurgerTime to arcades around the world. The concept was a simple one, as experimental chef Peter Pepper, your task is to walk over hamburger ingredients across a series of platforms and ladders while avoiding some angry pursing ingredients. The end goal is to assemble complete hamburgers and progress to the next levels. The game was a real hit and eventually found a release on the NES also.
Fast forward to 2019, and let me introduce you to BurgerTime Party! A game G-Mode have seized as an opportunity to retell a modern-day narrative that truly harnesses all of the nostalgia and simple gameplay mechanics from 1982 while layering several enhancements to the experience that makes this one of the most addictive arcade games I’ve played all year.
The hilarious opening cut scene, shows our favourite chef Peter Pepper refining his latest recipe in the kitchen, and casting off the ingredients that have no place in his kitchen this time around, landing themselves in the trash. These 4 ingredients (Sausage, Fried Egg, Pickle, and a Donut) have other ideas and serve as the main antagonists in the game, keen to seek revenge, in a Sausage Party like vendetta (although I must stress this is safe for kids).
From a gameplay styling, the level layout has a Donkey Kong vibe (classic DK obviously) with ladders and platforms, but the game travels at a rapid pace, as each neglected ingredient have a different method to try to capture our chef and prevent his assembly of yummy burgers.
It’s this variety of approach that keeps the player hooked. The sausages follow a standard “follow the leader route”, whilst pickles speed along at a quicker pace and try to head you off from the front, Fried Eggs, jump up and down from platforms, and the Donuts perform a rhino charge from one end of the platform to the other (and are dazed for a moment afterwards).
The AI design is excellent, and although you can work out patterns, or delay your movements to let the ingredients make the first move, it does challenge you as you progress through the 100 or so levels across the game.
Our Protagonist Chef Peter Pepper can also fight back, and if you time your walk over burger ingredients well, and have one of the neglected on your tail, you can cause them to drop down to the next level with the ingredients themselves. This also scores a multiplier and point boost that helps you to earn bronze, silver or gold awards for the level itself but also some fun treats for our Chef also.
Our Chef can be rewarded with Fiery Chilli Breath (That disintegrates any ingredients his path), a refillable Pepper Spray to daze any foes ahead, Coffee which slows down time and tells you the path your enemies are following or Chicken Nuggets, which throw, well, chicken nuggets at them!
There are also some cool challenges thrown at the player as you progress through your quest. Icy platforms and ladders that make it harder to control your character, Conveyor belts that move your character at the speed of lightning and fiery floors that sizzle anyone touching to a crisp. Each time these challenges force you to strategise your approach and think differently.
Graphically the game is a stunner, with Peter Pepper himself looking just like a reimagining of Alex Kidd (complete with throbbing thumb) and our evil ingredients stylised almost identically to the art design of Cuphead, they look beautiful, evil, but beautiful.
Honestly, the only part that feels a little repetitive is the music, with a fun arcade-like soundtrack that doesn’t change throughout the game at all. This is, of course, par for the course with 80’s arcade gaming, but something I feel could have been modernised with this reimagining. Small changes in the audio (such as a tempo increase when you are down to one life remaining) would have just edged the immersion factor a little more.
Once you have navigated the 100 or so levels across the game itself, there is a fun addition to enable multiplayer gaming, allowing the player to quadruple the odds with up to four Peter Peppers or instead reversing roles and playing as the angry ingredients themselves, its smart and enjoyable and for me adds additional depth to the game, outside of just chasing for silver and gold medals for each level.
I’m sure you can tell at this stage, I love BurgerTime Party! It’s a lot of fun, mentally challenging, beautifully stylised and works perfectly playing handheld or docked as a family shared game on the big screen at home. Make no “minced-steak” the Developer has done a brilliant job on this one, and if they keep going at this rate, they’ll be “on a roll.”
Rapid Reviews Rating
You can buy BurgerTime Party! from the Nintendo eShop on the following link, https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/BurgerTime-Party–1646511.html
You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.