Cooking Mama review

  • Making Mama happy
  • Combining dishes
  • Seeing the fruits of your labor
  • Can only take so much
  • Lots of repeating steps
  • Can't eat pretend, digital food

It's tough to hate on Cooking Mama. The cheery graphics and so-simple minigames make it ideal for casual gamers or anyone looking to kill a few minutes on a bus, but hang around long enough and the charm starts to wear thin. There may be more than 70 dishes to create, but after 15 minutes of cutting, stirring and blowing into the DS's microphone, we don't care how delicious octopus spaghetti might be.

The entire game revolves around preparing dishes. You start simple, with things like rice, then work up to elaborate combinations of meat, seasoning and anything else you want to toss on there. Preparation might be tapping the knife to cut a carrot, tracing arrows to mash bread around or obeying a series of rhythm-game-like commands to stew a pot of ingredients. Each step of creation is its own timed minigame, eventually giving you the finished product at the end.

Variations in the recipe can pop up, providing you with a choice to continue with the dish as-is or veer off and create something totally new. Either way, you'll unlock all the meals eventually. But if you're going to attempt such a flame-kissed feat, please, do it in moderation. Much like Tamagotchi Connection, the sugar-drenched cuteness goes away and all you're left with is a mountain of like-themed minigames. Fun, but only for so long.

More Info

Release date: Sep 12 2006 - DS (US)
Available Platforms: DS
Genre: Family
Published by: Majesco
Developed by: Taito
Franchise: Cooking Mama
ESRB Rating:
Everyone: Alcohol Reference


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