Parents' Guide to

Too Many Cooks

By Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Abundant ads, similar rounds make gameplay feel half-baked.

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As in many other food prep games, players will perform tasks to prepare meals for restaurant customers, but this game has a more haphazard approach to culinary service. Players don't prepare orders for specific customers in Too Many Cooks -- they're just trying to compile elements they're told need to be served, such as a plate and cooked rice. Some items require additional steps, such as chopping up salmon before adding it to other ingredients, and dishes may need to be washed before they're used. There doesn't seem to be a clear sequence things should be done in, or which order needs to be served first, which makes figuring out the best strategy challenging.

Extremely long ads are shown frequently, which slows any momentum you've gained to a halt -- and even though you're working against the clock, the gameplay can start to feel a little boring, due to the repetitive motions that are involved. An option that lets you play with other users can be inconsistent -- you may be told you need to wait for the host to select a level, and then get bounced back to the starting screen and find they're unable to join a game. Players can choose to be the host, but will have to wait until two other players are found, and the experience isn't too thrilling once they are. It's essentially a slight variation on the solo player mode, with a faster, almost hectic pace, where you try to fill orders while asking the other people to supply them with ingredients -- and giving items to those players. Visually, the game has a consistent, well-integrated bubbly pastel look, and it's easy to see how many items you've added and still need for meals in rounds. But without clearer instruction or goals, aside from the next order or two you need to compile, though, it's hard to figure out how to improve your performance in either mode -- which makes Too Many Cooks a culinary experience players might want to skip.

App Details

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