Battle Chef Brigade is a game where you can kill a dragon with a magic kitchen knife, take its heart, cook it into a meal, and serve it to a judge. If that doesn’t immediately sell you on this game, I don’t know what will.
Battle Chef Brigade was developed by Trinket Studios and published by Adult Swim Games, and while that may sound like an unlikely duo, I can assure you the Trinket Studios has done a magnificent job at making it all come together.
You play as Mina Han, an aspiring chef who has spent her life working in her parents’ restaurant in the remote Windy Village. Bored of her repetitive day to day life, Mina runs away to participate in a cooking competition to join the Battle Chef Brigade. The Brigade is a world renowned organization made of the best chefs and warriors who protect people from monsters and served them up on a platter.
Battle Chef Brigade can be broken up into three major gameplay sections; conversation, cooking, and combat.
Cooking is done as a match-three game with three basic elements to combine, but more get added as you advance through the story. The elements can be combined up to a level three gem, but nothing higher than that. Combining the elements gives your dish more power. The higher a dish’s power, the more likely you are the win over the judges.
Each judge is different from one another. They each have their own preferences for what kind of food they want. This means that they will want more of a certain kind of element in their dish. So say a judge loves spice, you better put a lot of fire gems in their food.
But meeting the judges’ wants isn’t the only obstacle you’ll have to deal with, you’ll have to remember to include the special theme ingredient in each dish you cook. Forgetting to include either of these things will result in your dish losing power and may cost you the match.
Along with the three main element types, there are two others that come into play later in the story. Poison will lower a dish’s power when presented to a judge, but there are multiple ways to remove poison, so you can still use poison food if you’re smart about removing it. Then there is bone, which, when three are combined, will create a rainbow orb that can be combined with any other two element orbs.
Battle Chef Brigade’s combat is somewhat basic, but there is beauty in its simplicity. Through practice, you can find combos that will let you slash through monsters like they’re butter. With a mixture of basic directional attacks such as downward smashes and flying kicks, and magical spells like tornadoes and a rain of daggers, you’ll find a combat style you like and stick to it.
There are several different combat areas, each with different monsters that give different ingredients. There are areas such as a forest, a mine, and a cloud kingdom. Some enemies are more difficult than others, but they often provide amazing ingredients that will give you an advantage over your opponent.
The last main part of gameplay is the conversation. Mina can wander around town and talk to and challenge other chefs who can be found hanging out in the street. She can go to the shop and buy items that give her an advantage in cooking competitions, and she can take on jobs to earn cash to spend in said shop.
The jobs that Mina can accept are variations on cooking and combat that can net you around 25 to 30 gold each job. You can only do one of each job a day, up to three jobs a day. Jobs are completely optional for the most part, but are recommended considering there isn’t any other way to make money.
Each character is completely unique and has their own interesting personality. Granted, there are some that are somewhat flat characters, like the grumpy, stoic dwarf, but they all have their own intentions, goals, and small quirks that help them break out of their cliché mold.
The art style of this game is beautiful. It looks like a masterfully done anime. Especially in the cut-scenes. And when you add in the amazing voice acting by people like Erica Mendez and Amber Lee Connors, you’ll be drawn into the story and want to know what happens next.
I highly recommend Battle Chef Brigade if any of what I’ve said has interested you even in the slightest. I doubt you’ll regret any time you spend with this game.