A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Strong themes of teamwork, with players finding creative ways to work together to overcome obstacles, follow directions, and complete objectives in the most efficient way possible.
Positive Role Models
Sure, the Onion King is kind-hearted, although somewhat clueless, and his canine companion Kevin is heroic. But the real positive characters here are the chefs, who band together to save the Onion Kingdom by working as a team.
Ease of Play
While the controls are very easy to pick up and play, the game is challenging. Things get difficult quickly as players frantically run around each stage trying to coordinate steps to create complex recipes.
Violence & Scariness
Silly cartoonish slapstick violence pops up occasionally. Plus, this time around, players can throw food around, including at their fellow chefs.
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Although there's online play, communication is handled through pre-programmed emotes and not online chat, reducing the possibility of being exposed to any offensive content. It’s still possible for kids to run into such behavior through online party chat separate from the actual game.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Overcooked! 2 is a strategic arcade-style party game available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and Windows. The game, a sequel to the original Overcooked!, challenges players to work together in various crazy kitchens to prepare and deliver recipes to hungry patrons. The game is easy to learn in terms of controls, but communicating with other players and completing increasingly complex recipes ramps up the difficulty pretty quick. There's very little violence, though players can toss food at one another, and there's some minor slapstick humor in the cutscenes. The game is appropriate for all ages, with no offensive content or language, though it's still possible for players to engage in online voice chat outside of the in-game communication options.
Is It Any Good?
When the original game was first released, it served up a heaping helping of party game-style fun, but also left fans hungry for more. For Overcooked! 2, the classic recipe has been updated with new ingredients to add extra spice, while still retaining the familiar taste of the first game. Some of these additions are little more than cosmetic garnish, such as the slew of new chefs for players to unlock. Other additions add a little extra meat to the gameplay, such as the new ability to throw items around. It may not seem like much at first, but being able to toss that tomato to a fellow chef or workstation from across the screen can make a large impact. In a game where efficiency is everything, every second shaved off the clock can mean the difference between serving up a fresh meal or tossing out scraps.
The biggest change in Overcooked! 2 is the addition of online play. While you can play the game solo, Overcooked! has always been a dish best shared with others. With Overcooked! 2's online multiplayer, now you don't have to try to fill your couch with line cooks. Instead, you can jump into the kitchen with your favorite chefs from around the globe. Both online and couch co-op play are equally fun, though you do lose a little of the camaraderie that comes with having everyone together in one room shouting and laughing together. Unless you set up a party chat on whichever platform you're playing on, Overcooked! 2's built-in communication is limited to just a series of easily accessible emotes. No matter how you choose to play, though, expect a challenge. The game ramps up the difficulty fairly quickly, but thankfully, it never rises to the point of feeling impossible ... especially if you've got a good team together. Even playing solo, while much more difficult, still manages to stay entertaining without getting too frustrating. If the first Overcooked! was the party game entrée, then Overcooked! 2 is a fully stocked buffet of fun.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.