notes: overcooked

05 April 2018

Played with a friend on a switch, only co-op mode so far.

If you haven’t played: watching videos of gameplay should show all the controls.

  • Casual players can focus on each individual task.
  • Tasks need to come together, food needs to not overcook.
  • Hardcore players can try planning which order of tasks can cook meals faster.
  • One of those nice "two problems, one solution" designs.
  • There is also a skill curve for picking-up/placing objects, and using the dash button.
  • The timer for one level is the right length, such that if you fail you don't feel like too much time was invested when you lose. It can't be short or else you won't be able to let the players make funny mistakes.

Continued ->

  • New mechanics are to mess with players, and are also fun. Beginner players might have to take time to learn, but fortunately the timer length is good.
  • Picking up and placing objects is typically done visually, which can get hard when the camera is zoomed out.
  • Some levels with moving platforms feel rather uncertain whether the player will stay on or not. I don't know how upset a player can get at colliding with the corner of a platform and falling. For another platform with a different shape, you might not collide with the corner and simply walk onto it.
  • The trees in stage select are asthetic.

The versus mode obviously would have the same gameplay. I’m not sure if there’s any comeback mechanic available, but to quickly brainstorm some rubberbanding:

When you’re behind: ingredients can be simpler

  • Only fish or chips, never fish AND chips
  • Soups might only need 2 chopped vegetables instead of 3
  • Burgers/pizzas don't require extras (often just cheese pizza or meat sandwich)

You could also have rats target the winning team’s ingredients, but rats were meant to be a gimmick for a certain stage archetype only.

I don’t think you should actually modify chopping/cleaning/cooking speed though. Enough parts of the game need to stay the same otherwise neither the winning or losing team will think it’s fair.

Other random additions could be choosing a single trait for versus mode (faster chopping, faster movement, super-fast dish washing) to just have a bonus make your character a little more unique. It’s also nicer for players who want to focus on a certain task, since now they’ve got obvious incentives.

With that a teammate could focus on the chopping board because they’re literally faster at chopping while another teammate is busy running around with ingredients with bonus movement speed.

I wouldn’t pin these buffs to chefs. Chefs should just be visually different. They are, right?


Need to sit down some friends and make them fight each other for more observations.