Diner Dash to bring thrill of service industry to portable systems

Finally, a game that lets aspiring restauranteurs get the customer interaction experience they'll need to succeed without all those pesky actual people. Diner Dash, recently announced for the DS and PSP, puts you in the comfortable, supportive shoes of Flo, waitress extraordinaire. As Flo, you are charged with serving food, cleaning up messes, and keeping your customers happy. After all, they are always right.

From the looks of things, you'll be running a one-woman show on the floor of your establishment. From seating guests to clearing their tables and everything in between, you'll be the only server/hostess/busser your customers will ever need. Leave the cooking up toMama, you've got a restaurant to run. Crying babies and loud cell-phone talkers will need to be dealt with politely, but firmly, if you want to keep your patrons - and the all-powerful critic - happy. Manage it well, and you just might make it in this crazy world.

Judging by the cutesy appeal of Diner Dash, we reckon you won't be driving off rats before the Health Inspector comes, or bribing mob-connected suppliers for prime cuts of meat. Still, this sugary service game could provide some unique entertainment. If you're actually a waiter, then it might feel like a bit of a busman's holiday, unless you look at it as a chance to vent some frustration. Go ahead, seat that young couple next to the crying baby. You know those cheapskates aren't tipping more than 10%.

Miserly bastards.

February 1, 2007