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Co-Op

    Overcooked 2 Review: Xbox One

    Push your friendships to the limit in this chaotic co-op cooking game
    Overcooked 2 Review The Mommy Gamers

    Overcooked 2, a much anticipated sequel to Overcooked released this month getting players off the couch and online for some epic co-op cooking challenges. In Overcooked 2 players return to the Onion Kingdom with all new dynamic kitchen locations, new recipes, and punishingly difficult obstacles. Overcooked 2claims “to become an instant classic, bringing family and friends together” but I feel like it could also tear apart some strong friendships. To test this theory I recruited a crew of Twitch streamers for a co-op game, and then asked their thoughts.

    The Mommy Gamers Review Overcooked 2

    Here is what our co-op crew had to say after playing:
    (Clicking on their names will take you to their Twitch pages if you’d like to check out their awesome streams)

    Link Flores

    Overcooked is a franchise that I am unfamiliar with, so I was excited to get a chance to play with Marcia of The Mommy Gamers and friends.  This was jokingly referred to as a game that will “ruin friendships” and on the surface it might appear that way. The chaotic gameplay left us more than a few times on the losing side of a challenge as we struggled to serve up meals, wash dishes, and save food and the kitchen from random fires.  

    I found, however, that the longer we played together the more naturally we all fell into a rhythm and selected roles that best complemented our play style and personalities. Someone would just ease into washing dishes and setting out clean plates while another would toss fresh ingredients from one station to the next.  In the next match, however, the roles would organically shift and change, with new players assuming different roles. The grunts and groans of frustration quickly became replaced with joking banter and howls of surprise as one disaster after another befell us, only to erupt into cheers and congratulatory laughter when we finally cracked through and managed to overcome the challenges presented.

    Overcooked 2 Teamwork

    Is Overcooked 2 perfect?  Well, no game ever is. There were some minor collision detection and control issues from time to time, which would occasionally result in a missed throw or step.  The difficulty is pretty steep from the start which could be frustrating to new players to the franchise. The fun I had, however, far overshadowed these “flaws”.

    In an era of gaming where multiplayer gaming seems to have encouraged solo players to “Rambo” their way past their team to victory, Overcooked 2 has encouraged cooperative play and given each player a reason and a solid opportunity to shine and be the MVP for the team.  I would like to thank Team 17 and Ghost Town Games for this delightful creation and also Marcia and The Mommy Gamers family for inviting me to partake in the fun!

    Lucas Fox

    I was not familiar with the Overcooked franchise going into this. Marcia, put a call out on Facebook looking for people to play with her, and I answered it.

    DO NOT go into this game thinking that you are going to be a silent player. There is NO WAY to progress beyond the first 3 levels without talking to your teammates. Sure, people told me this was the friendship ending, the relationship killer, the game that will destroy whatever bonds you have with the people playing it. Clear concise communication (look at that alliteration) is an absolute must in this game. After getting past some funnier moments and digging into it, I enjoyed playing with Marcia, Link and Mike. In fact we started to gel as we found roles we were comfortable in.

    Overcooked 2 challenging levels

    Okay, being honest, when Link couldn’t connect to discord, to talk with the rest of us, I got annoyed. Because having a clear line of communication is paramount. But as was mentioned, we fell into our roles, and starting having a blast doing those roles. I was the food thrower, and I was finding out that I could throw food across a room and into the pot or pan it needed to cook in.

    I did play beyond our group, with my wife, and we had a fantastic time. I think it was Mike that stated that 3 is the sweet spot in terms of players in the game at once, and I agree with him. Having all four of us play was fun as hell, but when it was just my wife and I, we felt a little more stressed for time, and what we could accomplish in each of the levels. Dividing all of the tasks between the two of us tended to stress us out a bit more. Though we had a lot of fun playing it.

    There are some minor control issues, and hit detection bugs, but it doesn’t take away from the fun. It actually makes the game feel more frenzied and challenging. It’s almost like they are put in there as another minor obstacle to overcome, and they don’t take away from the game. Overcooked 2 is definitely worth the price of admission!

    Mike Robles

    “I will never play on Marcia’s team again.” – TheMikeRobles

    Marcia Morgan

    As someone who had played the original Overcooked I kind of knew what I was getting into. However, I didn’t have anyone to couch co-op the original with so I was wildly unprepared in the teamwork aspect. As everyone else (except Mike who just decided to make himself a quote) stated, communication is totally key in this game. Regardless of how well we team-worked we were still challenged on every level we played. But it was a fun challenge, pushing us to do better with each try in an attempt to get three stars.

    I very much look forward to playing more Overcooked 2, and we are all still friends after our first attempt. I definitely recommend this as a fun game to stream on Twitch or Mixer. It also seems like it would be a fun party game because it’s amusing to spectate as well.

    If you’re interested in checking out Overcooked 2 it is available now on Xbox, Nintendo Switch, PS4, and PC.

    *This article includes affiliate links. Using our links to buy stuff on Amazon helps The Mommy Gamers keep doing what we are doing.
    **Each reviewer was given a copy of Overcooked 2 for review purposes. But our opinions are our own. We absolutely enjoyed this game a lot!

    Pode – Nintendo Switch Review

    Catch This Falling Star and Keep it in Your Pocket
    Pode Game Nintendo Switch Review The Mommy Gamers

    In the long line of Nintendo Indie games (adorably named “Nindies”) there are a few really standout games that have been coming out. One such game, Pode, is that about a Star who has fallen out of the sky, and just wants to go back home.

    Our little hero, Glo, has crashed landed and met up with a rock named Bulder. Together the two make quite the pair as they solve puzzles, and embark on a (sometimes emotional) journey.

    Pode Nintendo Switch Game Review Mike Robles

    Pode is, at it’s core, a co-op game. While the game can be played in a single player mode, Pode really benefits from having a partner to play with. Glo and Bulder each have their own characteristics that make Pode unique. Since Glo is a star, they can glide across water no problem where as Bulder, the rock, will sink to the bottom. This is part of what makes Pode so unique as players will enjoy figuring out the right character to use in the right situation.

    Pode Game Screenshot The Mommy Gamers

    What makes Pode stand out is it’s unique presentation. It’s hard to describe without sounding contradictory. Dark, yet colorful. Dim, yet bright. Glo can use their light to shine areas and make the plant life grow. There are some wonderfully animated cutscenes that show the relationship between Glo and Bulder and it’s just.. it’s just the most precious.

    Pode Game Review Nintendo Switch co-op puzzle game

    Pode is a real treat for anyone with a Switch and a friend. I mean… having a friend is a treat anyway. But having a friend you can play Pode with, is the best treat.

    The author was given a retail code for Pode for review purposes

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    Kickstarter: Oniri Islands – Children of the River

    Oniri Islands children of the river The Mommy Gamers Kickstarter Review Hands On

    Oniri Islands:Children of the River is a co-op adventure from Tourmaline Studio coming to tablets in winter of 2017.  With only one day left the Oniri Islands Kickstarter project has surpassed their goal, meaning this beautiful adventure and exploration game will become a reality. You still have time to get in and help them reach their stretch goals, and collect fun rewards like having your name added to the game credits, stickers, digital art goodies and more!

    The Mommy Gamers Oniri Islands Children of the River Kickstarter Review Preview Hands On

    My daughter Hailey and I recieved acess to a demo of Oniri Islands as well as prototypes of the Mina and Tim figurines. Mina and Tim are “smart toys” that we moved around our tablet to explore the world of Oniri Islands. The cooperative play aspect of this game is such a fun feature. Hailey and I each took control of one of the figurines and worked together to travel through maze like sections, dodging quicksand, and working together to solve puzzles. In addition to using the toys to move around, they also were used to unearth items, and collect and carry quest items. We did not recieve the masks for the characters, but based on the demo they have secret powers tied to them that help players interact with the environment in fun and unique ways.

    Hailey just turned seven years old last week and she seems to be the perfect age for this app. She did get a little frustrated with a couple of the puzzles, as the demo version we played lacked a lot of guidance. However, I got the feeling that Oniri Islands is meant for exploration and creative thinking, and together we were able to put our heads together and figure out each challenge. While the demo we played was fairly short, I was very impressed with the way the story flowed. Between the lovely music, awesome visuals inspired by other games I love like Animal Crossing and Zelda Wind Waker, I look forward to adventuring through more of the Oniriverse.

    To learn more about Oniri Islands visit their Kickstarter page here, and if you decide to back this wonderful game make sure to tell them The Mommy Gamers sent you!

    *The Mommy Gamers recieved a demo of Oniri Islands and prototypes of the figurines for review purposes.

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    The Co-Op Experience

    Imagine playing your favorite solo campaign. You’re getting hit from all sides and it really looks at times to be damn near impossible to make it through. You’re struggling to work through a tough part and you think “Man it would sure be nice to have a little help here.” Of course you have the option of a co-op experience, but at the moment you’re all alone.

    Then all of a sudden a recently added person on your friends list pops up… “Ker-plink”

    You know of them, you have played multi-player with them before with your other friends, met them in a random lobby, or they were with you at a midnight launch event. You had a great time joking around and thought they were awesome in one way or another.

    You send them a game request and boom…to your surprise they accept. You and your partner link up and “poof” you’re not alone anymore.

    At first everything seems great. You both think this is going to be easy. You’re going have the same amount of obstacles and enemies. It will be be a cake walk. But then the system throws a monkey wrench in the cogs… you realize it’s not going to get any easier. It is going to be just as tough as the lone experience except this time you have a friend along for the ride.

    The system takes into account that there are two people playing and ramps up the amount of difficulty. Instead of the single player experience that your used to you both realize that each of you still have the same issues it’s just doubled. Now things look even more impossible. Wave after wave of enemies bombard your little encampment. Communication begins to break down. Both of you start focusing on different objectives.  You’re thinking that separating for a little while will get you through this game. You both are completely mistaken…. Soon you see the dreaded “Game Over” screen. Each of you blames the other for the fail. Then with both of you angry and bitter, you log off.

    Game-over

    Games can be tough but there is no need to get all defensive and huffy about it. You both made mistakes. Now is the time to move on or apologize to each other and jump back in.

    Here is my advice on having a great co-op experience.

    #1 Communicate.

    Communication is and has always been the most important strategy to any successful game. Without that one key component you both are dead in the water. You must be honest, clear, specific and and in agreement with each other on how to proceed in the game. Communication becomes even more important and critical when you’re several hundreds of miles or even a  continent away.

    #2 Take your time.

    In all cases slow and steady wins the game. Enjoy the level and take time to look around. Be in awe of all that is there to offer. When enemies pop up take them on together. I mean this is the reason you both are here together. You both have decided to put in an investment of ones time, skills and resources. Why try to rush though something that has such a high cost in today’s society?

    #3 Understand each others strengths and weaknesses.

    Find a way to help each other out with individual flaws. Give encouragement when needed and above all else, never point those flaws out in a cruel and hurtful way. Remember you’re in this together. Observe these flaws, take them into account. Understand that your skill set is different from theirs. Use these to your advantage and find a way to make those skill sets compliment each other in a cohesive unstoppable force to be reckoned with.

    #4 Be ready to upgrade.

    There will be the possibilities of add-ons in most games. Understand that if your Co-Op partner wants an add-on or four  you will be expected to take them on as well. You might be hesitant at first but remember this can only enhance your experience together. If you’re not willing to get the add-ons then don’t waste the others time. Remember tip number one…communicate.

    #5 There is always a continue.

    Sure games get difficult. No game is easy… especially the good ones.  There are always a few bugs that pop up now again. Sometimes there are objectives and achievements that you both were striving for in single player mode. But in almost every case  you have the opportunity to get those together.

    SONY DSCNow if you read this and didn’t “get it”… replace the word “game” with “relationship”.

    Funny how gaming and life can imitate each other huh?

    I hope these five tips that my wife and I have learned help you with your “Game”. But there is one last tip that really can’t be put into the above hidden message…

    Neither of you can ever say  “I love you.” too much to each other. We are never promised another day. Take advantage of each and every opportunity to say those three words.

    All games become retro but I’d rather have a classic that I will continue to play for the rest of my life than a flashy game that loses it’s luster in three months.

    This month my wife and I will be celebrating our seventh wedding anniversary. This is the best, most rewarding and addictive game I will ever want to play. She always has my six and I keep giving her the encouragement to keep going and achieving the next level.

     

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