Stand O’ Food 3 is the latest of the Stand O’ Food time management games. By far, it is the best out of the lineup. Frenetic and colorful, Stand O’ Food is a must-have for time management game fans. The review is based on the version for Android (it’s available in iTunes, too).The game is free, but you can unlock it completely for a scant $1.99. The free version gives plenty of great gameplay, though. Stand O’ Food 3 is developed by G5 Entertainment.
Backstory and Object
You play the game as Ronnie, the cook and manager of the Stand O’ Food franchise of restaurants. In this latest game, he tries launching a series of successful cafes in Hollywood. Success in this game, means making as much money as possible and leveling up by serving orders quickly and correctly, and mastering challenges that are thrown in between game rounds. The game is not just about how fast you are—strategy is needed, too. Ingredients are served up on a conveyor belt, you must put ingredients in the correct order before giving a dish to a customer. As customer volume increases it becomes tricky to get to the ingredients you need on the conveyor belts in a timely manner. This makes the game really fun.
You also can upgrade and expand the cafes by purchasing sauces to make dishes more expensive and drive up profit, for example. Or, you can purchase items such as heating plates to keep food warm, air conditioners to keep customers cool, or jukeboxes to keep them entertained. These investments all help to make customers more patient as the gameplay gets more challenging.
Customers walk into one of a series of cafes that you play in at various levels. One café serves burgers and breakfast sandwiches, a second serves different types of lasagna, and a third serves cakes. The customers place their orders which you see in thought bubbles that hover over a character’s head. You have to assemble ingredients off the belt to fill the customers’ orders and then serve the dish in a timely fashion.
At first, recipes are quite simple. For example, in the burger café, you start off by serving open-faced sandwiches—a bottom bun with some bacon on it. As the game progresses, the recipes become more complex. At one point as I was nearing the end of the game, I was building sandwiches with more than ten layers!
This increasing complexity works well in all cafes except the bakery. It gets very difficult to make out the different layers and toppings on a multi-tiered cake in order to build it properly. Fortunately, you can click on the food order within the customer’s thought bubble and get a larger image of the order. However, that slows down gameplay and time is of the essence in Stand O’ Food.
The game offers three levels: Easy, Normal, and a challenging level for time management game fans. A pet peeve: When I opted for the hardest level, I couldn’t skip the initial tutorial! That should be an option, at least for the more advanced level.
I enjoy the challenges in between the main gameplay of serving customers. These challenges are like mini-games. One challenge happens when you are about four levels into the game. You have to quickly serve burgers off of four small conveyor belts to customers as they line up at the belts and then you have to quickly catch the empty plates patrons place back on the belts, before they fall off and shatter. Playing these mini-games well quickly adds to your revenue.
The graphics are sharp. They aren’t as high-resolution and artistic as in one of my other favorite foodie time management games, Streetfood Tycoon: World Tour but the game is very vibrant in color. The music is not at all irritating—it wavers between jaunty country music, to violins, to Italian operetta music (when you are in the lasagna café). However, it’s not quite as sophisticated as the music in Streetfood Tycoon.
Still, Stand O’ Food 3 is a fun game. It challenges you throughout the game and actually gets quite hard. It’s playful, colorful, and always puts me in a good mood after a few minutes of gameplay—it’s just a happy, frenetic app and a four out of five star earner for Android apps.
Copyright © 2012 Ziff Davis, Inc