I love games like this, they are my jam exact. Anything that is simulation and you just click around and micromanage brings me great joy. So knowing this I went into Cook, Serve, Delicious with high expectations and… was kind of let down.
First, let’s go over what the game actually is and what it does right. Cook, Serve, Delicious has you take over a no star restaurant and you complete days cooking food. You do so in expected ways by clicking on the food, clicking on the steps to make it, then getting it out. As you progress and make money, you can buy more foods, upgrade your restaurant, upgrade the food itself, and many other things.
In addition to that, there are also events thrown in, that essentially have you doing the same thing but in a challenge. So you have catering events where the menu is decided, and you just make the same things over and over but under much harsher time constraints and with only so many afforded fails. There is also Iron Chef events that kind of work the same way but are harder.
One thing I love that this game features above other games in the same vein is a menu you customize every day. You pick what’s on the menu, what your specials are, and that impacts the days overall. Too many fatty foods and you will lose buzz, if an item remains on your menu for too long it will experience rot and people won’t want to buy it. Find that perfect combo of items though, and you start the day with people already excited to come in and will have a busy and successful day.
So then what’s the problem? Sadly the controls. Cook, Serve, Delicious is meant to be played with both a mouse and keyboard and the controls are not intuitive at all. Replacing the mouse and keyboard and focusing on mostly just mouse can work, but since the game is not meant to be played that way you will notice the game not going quickly enough and failures happening more frequently. The game eventually starts to punish you because you should logically be able to go faster if you got the controls down, but again they aren’t intuitive. The game stops being fun about halfway through the experience because you are fighting the controls more than enjoying the game. In the end, it becomes a huge problem.
So bottom line? I would still mostly recommend it. While the 9.99 price tag might be too much, it is frequently on sale, and there is some fun to be had. A lot of the ideas put in the game are great, but the control scheme holds it back. I have still managed to have hours of fun with it, I just wish it played better.
If you like this type of game find it on sale and enjoy. If you don’t like these types of games, it’s not going to be the one that changes your mind.