I need to make one thing patently clear right from the very beginning here. Lunch A Palooza isn’t going to be a game for the typical gamer out there. At best, it’s a game a Gaming parent might buy to have some mindless fun with their young children, or for their young child/children. This is definitely a game best suited to the Roblox generation of gamers coming through.
It’s a bit of a shame too, because the premise is sound. This is basically…food based Power Stone. An arena brawler where you pick a different favourite dish character like a burger, or jelly, or corn on the cob and duke it out in various restaurant locales. Sounds like fun, right?
The issue is, it’s not very fun. Mostly because not much of what’s implemented here works very well. The combat is simple on paper, as it only comprises 3 buttons, attack, jump and grab. But the combat just doesn’t really work. It all feels too random and like you’re never really in control of what’s happening. There’s no real way of getting good at this game, because the fighting is mostly button mashing and hoping for the best. Word of advice, choose the corn on the cob, it was the only character where I found I had some semblance of control over the matches I was taking part in.
I sometimes found my character fall into a small gap in the table and then land on the chair, seemingly like I wasn’t meant to and just remaining stuck there until I jumped off the chair to my death in order to respawn.
But there isn’t really much to the game. There’s a few modes to try out, one of which seems completely pointless given the fighting system has no defensive option. That mode being King of the Hill. It seems counter productive to have a mode so heavily reliant on defense, but provide the player no defensive options. It makes something that was already not overly fun to play even less fun.
A treat for…anything?
One of the reason I mentioned Roblox at the start of the review is because, well Roblox is one of the biggest games on the planet and it both looks terrible and plays horribly. But kids absolutely can’t get enough of it. I couldn’t help but draw a lot of comparisons to Roblox in that way. The game doesn’t look great, even for something so simplistic and it doesn’t play very well as I mentioned earlier, but I can totally envision kids having a blast with it.
It’s just mayhem effectively, a literal and figurative food fight. The young’uns would have a blast playing 4 player multiplayer just mashing away and watching as they randomly tumble off the table and die because one of them happened to press the right button at the right time.
It’s unfortunate because with some polish and a working combat system, this game could have really found a nice little audience in the streaming arena.
Worth a taste?
There’s a fair amount to unlock here, but mustering up the effort to play enough to unlock everything might prove difficult for most. But even after everything I’ve said in this review, maybe the saving grace could be the price? “Hey, it’s only a few bucks, why not give it a go?”. No, it’s a $30AU game, which is pretty steep for a game so light on for both content and polish.
It’s honestly hard to recommend this title outside potentially as an option to keep the kids busy due to the 4 player local multiplayer. As I said earlier, the potential for something genuinely good is buried there somewhere, but there’s just too much lacking in just about every area to recommend forking over $30 to play this.