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  • Writer's pictureStormieDae

Cuisineer Review - The Ultimate Roguelite Cooking Adventure?

Cuisineer review by Stormie Dae (Steam/PC)

Released 11/9/23

BattleBrew Productions, Marvelous Europe, XSEED Games

Cuisineer is a wholesome food-focused game where you play as Pom, a young adventurer turned restaurateur. The story sets with Pom returning to her hometown where she learns her parents have decided to retire and travel the world and it will be her responsibility to now take over the family restaurant- thanks a lot parents! This game is a great addition to the ever-growing selection of non-farming related cozy games.

The game offers two delectable sides, both equally vital: the restaurant simulation and the Roguelite dungeon crawling. To run your eatery successfully, you'll embark on culinary quests to various map locations, where you'll encounter adorable little monsters, which, in this world, are the ingredients that you need in order to run this restaurant.

shop owner selling bubble tea
Who doesn't love bubble tea?

In the restaurant simulation aspect, you'll juggle customer orders and cook up a storm, reminiscent of the chaotic charm of "Overcooked." Customers will saunter in, place their orders, and choose from an array of mouthwatering dishes on your menu. The money you make during the day will be your funding for restaurant upgrades. Customize your cozy corner with a selection of chairs, tables, wallpaper, and plants to make it your own.

To keep the stove fires burning, the lunch and dinner rushes are your golden opportunities to fill your coffers. As you continue to expand your restaurant, the challenges increase, but the game maintains a satisfying level of difficulty. With over 100 recipes to master, your culinary journey is far from bland.

There are different vendors throughout the little town that change every few days or so that will have specific people that sell different things. You can strategically save your hard-earned money for these specialty vendors, but don't forget to pay off your debt. Oh, did I forget to mention your parents also left you an insane amount of debt?

Yeah– your parents also left behind an overwhelming amount of debt. It seems this cozy town has its own version of a certain relentless debt collector who expects regular, exorbitant payments to advance the story. Clearly the mayor of this town has picked up some tips from Tom Nook. It appears even in this quaint setting; capitalism is here to stay.

fighting chickens in the grass
Cuisineer features a unique blend of combat and management

As you interact with the townsfolk, you'll discover various side quests, each requesting specific food items or materials in exchange for new recipes. The more recipes you acquire, the better your restaurant's reputation, and the more money you'll rake in.

The restaurant simulation side keeps you on your toes, ensuring there's always something cooking. Planning out your days becomes second nature, and boredom is nowhere on the menu. However, one potential drawback I can think of with this side of things is the abundance of eating noises during the restaurant's open hours. If slurping and munching become too much to chew on, you can easily turn down the SFX volume.

Now moving into the Roguelite side of the game, like I said before you need to dungeon crawl in order to get ingredients, there are different maps and the different areas all have specific ingredients so if you need tomatoes for example, you'll go to a different map than where you would get broccoli.

Your trusty weapon starts as a humble spatula, but as you progress, it transforms into culinary marvels such as a kitchen knife or meat tenderizer. However, don't be fooled by the game's cuteness – these dungeons do offer a challenge. Following the classic Roguelite rules, a single misstep can mean death, losing everything, transporting you back to your cozy bed at home. But fear not, for you can replenish your health with delightful boba tea which is adorable.

wolf cat creature
You'll meet lots of fun characters along the way

The town boasts vendors where you can upgrade your equipment, enhancing your combat abilities and weapon enchantments. While there's no complex skill tree, you'll find a range of options to customize your gameplay, including adding elemental effects like fire, ice, and poison.

The deeper you delve into the dungeon levels, the more challenging the encounters become, including formidable boss fights. Yet, you can pace yourself to your liking. Some days may call for resource gathering, while others are ideal for hunting ingredients or confronting a menacing boss. This flexibility ensures that the challenge level aligns with your preferences.

Playing Cuisineer is a delightful experience, finely balanced with a diverse range of activities. Whether you're refining your restaurant's decor or facing formidable bosses, the game keeps you engaged throughout. However, it's important to note that combat is an essential ingredient of the experience. If you seek a combat-free game, this dish may not satisfy your palate. The dungeon-crawling combat and restaurant management are two essential components for success in this charming world. The art is adorable, and the sound design is lovely minus all the slurping noises. As long as you're comfortable with a touch of combat and a side of chewing sounds, you're going to have a good time with this game.

With that being said I am awarding this game a silver genie lamp; the game feels really good, and I am excited to keep it in my library.


Two gaming experiences in one, Roguelite plus restaurant sim

Well balanced

Can be challenging when you want it to be


A LOT of eating noises

Can be slightly repetitive

Silver genie lamp

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