These past few weeks, I’ve been playing a really fun video game called ‘Overcooked’. It’s a local co-op game (which means you can play two players on one keyboard) where we are chefs and we serve food to the customers… It’s a pretty simple game, kinda like Diner Dash or Hotel Mania where you need to have super fast reflex in order to serve the crazy amount of customers you’re serving. But the standout of this particular game is its cooperative nature.
This game requires you to play 2 to 4 players. Well you can play alone but in the game, you still have to switch between 2 chefs, so yea, more than 1 player recommended. All players are given the same abilities. There is no cooperation if you’re given the exact same abilities, right? Well, the secret of its cooperative nature is actually in the level design.
Every level is designed very nastily, having cabinets divide the kitchens into two parts, or having the pathway too narrow for two players to move from one part of the kitchen to another at the same time. This forces the players to not do everything by themselves but rely on their partners to help them cook and serve the food faster.
Adding to that, the platforms of each level also change. It changes in many different ways according each level, such as having freaking earthquake or the cabinets in the kitchen just slide from one side to another. It’s really crazy in the kitchen! The platform changes in each level forces the players to communicate with their partners because without communicating, you just don’t know what role you’re supposed to be playing after the platform shift.
The platform shift disrupts the dynamic of the all the roles in the kitchen and most importantly, disturbs your established rhythm. Take it like this, just when you’re used to chopping meats and vegetables, the platforms suddenly change forcing you to do other stuff that doesn’t involve chopping things and build up your rhythm all over again. This happens multiple times in the level until the time limit ends. This means that you won’t ever be used to do just one thing over the course of the level. You’ll do pretty much everything based on what the level design of the level decides.
The level design encourages players to actually talk with one another. Giving and receiving orders from your partner, giving suggestions on who should do what and having conversations like “I’ll do the chopping” or “serve this burger and I’ll wash the dishes” are common throughout the experience of playing this game. It might even lead to a fight if no one is giving any cooperation. To me personally, this is what makes the game so good. You actually interact with the people you are playing with. Most other local co-op games don’t really have this feature. The only reason they’re called co-op is because two players are in the same screen or two players play with one keyboard. This game, however actually encourages you to talk with the people who are playing with you and that to me makes the game all the more fun.
What’s more fun is the fact that this game is universal. It can be enjoyed by almost everyone so you can ask your siblings, your friends, or even your parents who don’t play games much and they’ll most probably enjoy playing this. If not, then… I’m so sorry.
In conclusion, I think this game is a really great co-op game. The video below is some snips of me and my little brother playing and freaking nailing it!!! (At least most of the time). We just beat the boss battle which is pretty tough, honestly. And now, my little brother is begging me to buy its sequel game, Overcooked 2. I didn’t know he likes the game so much haha. But he’ll have to wait until the game is on sale before I buy it. So yea, be patient, my little brother.
I hope anyone who decided to buy this game after reading this would find this game enjoyable too. Lastly, yea I’m most probably gonna talk about games (casual games in particular because those are the games that I play) more than I thought I would. See you next time, goodbye for now ~