There is something to be said about the start menu of a game, not settings or credits, those do matter, but instead the presentation as a package, the music, the visuals, it’s often a slice of what to expect when diving into a game. The start menu music alone is impressive and well done and fits the boisterous funny quirky good hearted nature that the game is ushered on, the menu displaying a disproportionate man walking around a small spherical planet with absurd carrots flying in the sky, gigantic dishes and ingredients and a world teeming with peculiarity and curiosity.
The game never takes itself seriously even in the height of seriousness, every line is a joke or leading to it. Every action and move in the game is hilarious and meant to make you laugh or even adore the absurdity, like Jesus being the town carpenter or the walking habits when carrying dishes. The game is light and requires little skill. This game isn’t offering a simulated cooking experience, instead you are making a dish just tossing and smooshing all the ingredients in the pan and visually it’s satisfying. This game is glowing with charm and you can feel it with each new interaction or discovery.
The game eases you into each new tool and their capabilities as well as the crafting and construction of buildings or dealing with people in town. The game has familiar ideas that have been implemented in many ways across other games, but this game takes the farm crafting story idea and throws in the heat of growing crops to cook with, in cooking battles! Cooking alone has mechanics that gives you freedom in your dishes but can get bonuses in numerous ways while cooking to attempt a higher score.
There’s not a lot of issues I have come across that are glaring, other than some text being overlapped by the toolbelt. Would be nice if the outfits were persistent with the dialog scenes. I also find it odd that you can’t jump, it feels like you should be able to. The game otherwise is a masterpiece both in gameplay experience and the entire goofy element always bursting at the seams of every scene.
I have enjoyed Epic Chef So far and I wholeheartedly recommend this game to anyone who gets into games like Portia or Stardew. There’s a lot of combinations and meals to be made. It scratches a couple itches and is easy enough to keep the game flowing and my focus on different tasks. A great part of games like this is you can drain a lot of time into them. But the absolute best part of Epic Chef! is you can make meals with a log of wood! Get out the recipe book!