Burger Time Party! is an arcade action game developed by G-MODE and published by XSEED Games. In this frantic action game, we find one to four players taking the role of chefs as they Cooperate to make burgers for their hungry guests. But there are angry foods about, trying to stop them from getting their meals out. Crazy action and puzzle-solving collide as the players must work out how to get their food out while wracking up as high a score as possible.
Remakes, re-imaginings, and reboots are not new things in modern media. Consumers are often beset by old concepts being dragged out again and again. However, this year has shown some hopeful signs for the video game industry where the handling of old properties is concerned. From this year’s opening mega-hit Resident Evil 2 Remake to the recent love letter to classic Nintendo that was The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, the video game industry has shown its coming to understand how to preserve what made a game great while modernizing it for new players. This trend has continued with Burger Time Party! with all the frantic fun I remember from the 1982 classic has been restored with lots of modern bells and whistles.
Burger Time Party! is a one-screen action game where players must navigate platforms and ladders while trying to knock the various ingredients scattered across the screen down to the bottom. Thus assembling the final product. But standing in their way is an array of angry food. From sausages to eggs and donuts these baddies pursue the players each in their own way. Sausages constantly chase the players, while pickles pick an area of the map and will patrol that section.
These various A.I. patterns keep the enemies from just being visual swaps. And new enemies are introduced fairly far into the game. Helping to keep the challenge up as new baddies must be adapted to. This adaptation isn’t just necessary to survive but also for earning big high scores.
The highest scores in Burger Time Party! aren’t earned by getting through the level the fastest, but by utilizing enemies to drop your food further. If a player can get food to drop while one or more enemies are standing on it the food will drop further. And score extra points. Also, extra points can be earned by dropping food on baddies from above. These scoring elements force players to really think about how they approach each map and enemy. At least if they are looking to get the highest score possible.
Burger Time Party! also introduces a whole slew of environmental hazards to keep maps feeling new and the challenges interesting. From classic conveyor belts ad crumbling platforms to ladders covered in grease that slow character movement there are so many twists this game uses it’s really impressive. The maps even do a great job of combining the various elements as you progress through the game. This allows the difficulty to continually ramp up without making any single element frustratingly difficult. And it is the overall approach to the difficulty that I truly love about Burger Time Party!.
As players progress through the game levels are opened up five at a time. Each level has up to three stars a player can earn. The thing I love though is that the only thing a player is required to accomplish to advance the game is to get one star on each map. This allows players to approach the game as they see fit. If you simply want to dash around avoiding enemies and making food you can. And you will get to see the whole game by doing so. However, if you want to go for the high scores and rack up big combos the game has plenty of depth in its levels to accommodate that style of play as well.
Perhaps the most instantly appealing aspect of Burger Time Party! is its gorgeous graphics. Burrowing an ascetic that harkens back to classic animation the visuals of this game overflows with charm. Idle animation show characters bouncing along to the rhythms of carefree music, with the classic curved limbs and big eyes that feel straight out of the early animated cinema. This lighthearted visual design became a reason in itself sometimes to boot up Burger Time Party! as it would help ease me out of a difficult day.
The only aspect of this package that feels like a misstep is in its achievement implementation. Occasionally players will get a pop-up after completing a map telling them they have been awarded an achievement. While this is cool in and of itself there doesn’t seem to be any way to view your achievements after the fact. Nor is there any way to find out what achievements still await to be unlocked. Without any way to really work toward these goals, they feel too random and tacked on for me.
While Burger Time Party! does a great job of getting as much variety out of its simple premise as it can, in the end, it did still come to be a bit tiresome for me. Now, I’m not a player that can really dig into puzzles and try to eke out the very best score. And I think those are the players that will get the most time out of this fun old-school romp. For others, the various enemy types and environmental effects keep the game feeling fresh longer. But even then it will only get so far.
In the end, Burger Time Party! is an excellent example of how to modernize a classic from over 30 years ago and make it relevant again. Even with its classic structure holding it back a little, there is still plenty of fun to be had with this delightful action puzzler.
Burger Time Party! releases on the Nintendo Switch on October 8th.
Burger Time Party!
- Rating - 8.5/108.5/10
In the end Burger Time Party! is an excellent example of how to modernize a classic from over 30 years ago and make it relevant again. Even with its classic structure holding it back a little, there is still plenty of fun to be had with this delightful action puzzler.