Chefs! Front and center! This kitchen is a mess and if you all want a spot in our prestigious academy, you'll need to work together to organize it!
We like to shape things up here, to keep you on toes, so be prepared to reorganize A LOT.
Well, come on, we don't have all day! Let's move!
What Is It?
A fast-paced cooperative game for 2 to 4 players all about organizing your cupcakes to the specifications of your instructor, on the given assignment cards. The number of assignments you need to fulfill in a game varies based on the number of players, but players always only have 7 minutes to complete them all for the ultimate win! If they don't, they lose for now, and will just have to try again to earn a place in the Cupcake Academy!
Who Is It For?
This one is great for kids and families because it is good to teach kids teamwork, but still some fast-paced fun for adults! I'd recommend it to ages 8+ but maybe a little older for the expert mode.
I would recommend it to fans of co-op games, for sure, but I think it's also good for people who aren't always big fans of co-op (like me). This is great because of the timed element which not only adds some pressure, but takes away the ability for alpha-playing because there just isn't enough time to just have 1 person trying to tell the others what to do, haha.
Contents + Quality
Cupcake Cups - They're pretty colors, and nice, sturdy plastic. They also stack together easily, no issues.
Plates - Average cardboard. Nice size to keep the cups on.
Cards - Average quality. Very clear which area is which and who needs to have which cups showing. Achievement cards is also very clear what each challenge is.
Timer - Basic sand timer. Mine is much longer than 7 minutes (it's about 12), so I ended up using a phone timer. They probably aren't always off, but it is worth checking before you play. An app timer would be awesome for this game in the future not only to keep the time, but to maybe add some fun and frantic music to the background too.
Rules - Simple and clear, easy to read and learn from.
Box/Insert - The cards sit a little above their slot in the insert, but it's not a big deal. Everything else has its place and fits well, and the box art is fun. The box also has a little window so you can see the cupcake cups while on display too, which is neat.
Variants and Extras
Expert Pastry Chefs - Normally, players just have to match which cups are shown on plates, but it doesn't matter which plate they are on. For expert pastry chefs, the game kicks it up a notch! This mode makes the position of the cups matter as well, which definitely adds a layer of challenge to the game especially within the same time constraint. It's a great variant once you're familiar with the game.
Achievement Checklist - This just lets players try to challenge themselves a bit more! You can earn medals for completing more assignments than normal within the 7 minute limit, challenge yourselves to complete assignments with your non-dominant hand, or play it risky and play without speaking to each other! It's a simple but fun addition to the game to keep it fresh once you've played a bunch.
I thought this was such a cute game, and I think it'll be great to introduce to my friends who are fans of co-op, but one that I will enjoy pulling out too! Even though the theme seems a little loose to me, it's still adorable which definitely gives it some points. So overall, I can definitely recommend this to families and co-op fans first and foremost, but think it's also worth giving a try if you just like fast-paced, timed games!
My Final Ratings:
Overall Game - 7/10
Aesthetics - 7/10
Difficulty - 4/10
Replayability - 7/10
Designer - Erwan Morin
Artist - Simon Douchy
Publisher - Blue Orange Games
MSRP - $19.99
*I was provided a copy of this game to do this review*
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