Cooking Mama: World Kitchen

Kombo’s Review Policy: Our reviews are written for you. Our goal is to write honest, to-the-point reviews that don’t waste your time. This is why we’ve split our reviews into four sections: What the Game’s About, What’s Hot, What’s Not and Final Word, so that you can easily find the information you want from our reviews.

What the Game’s About
Cooking Mama: World Kitchen puts you back in the kitchen with the PETA outlaw, Mama. Breaking down recipes from cultures all over the world with mini-games is the key ingredient to serve world class cuisine. You don’t actually play as Mama this time around but a budding young assistant.

What’s Hot
Cooking Mama is a strange game with a strange premise. It doesn’t shy away from that but instead, embraces it with open arms. It starts with the mini-games to create meals. First you might have to mix some dough or chop some veggies then move on to adding spices and finally cooking, grilling or deep frying the finished dish. These scenarios are where using the Wii-mote actually enhances the fun with the mixing and chopping motions. If it weren’t for that quirky cartoon presentation, the game wouldn’t be as much fun because you know it doesn’t take itself seriously. It’s a charm that is hard to force in a game and World Kitchen nails it.

In terms of mini-game games, World Kitchen rises like a cake in the oven compared to some other games of similar genre aren’t much taller than pancakes. It’s fresh, it’s original and it makes you hungry for chocolate chip cookies. The Wii-mote movements are funny and will have a room full of people laughing as you leaf lettuce.

What’s Not
Don’t look to World Kitchen to spice up your life because the game’s temperature is more warm than hot. At the end of the day, you may have made a delicious virtual entrée but it isn’t very satisfying gameplay. You need to get into a different frame of mind for World Kitchen even compared to other mini-game titles. While some of the steps to make a meal are really rapid and frantic, there is an awful lot of downtime between steps. The slow as molasses pacing puts the largest dent World Kitchen’s pots.

For a mini-game title, there isn’t a strong multiplayer component. It is possible to play with others, just prepare to set aside more time to let all the chefs to get their fill. There isn’t a lot of meat on the multiplayer bone to really sink your teeth into. Combine that with a slight learning curve and you’ll be teaching others how to cook before anything else.

Final Word
World Kitchen starts the fun fires but it never hits a boiling point. The slow pace drags the game to a numbing grind of flipping burgers and adding salt. It appears that World Kitchen took a step back when it could have used some more time in cooker.