The Nintendo Switch is apparently very hot right now – so hot it’s in the kitchen. Bon Appétit, the New York-based cooking magazine / website / business YouTube that faced criticism in 2020 after allegations of a toxic and racist environment, has slowly built its site after a ton of their talents Keys left in protest – and part of that apparently includes the expansion into video games. How dare they.
Writer Nico Avalle mainly covers food, with articles like “The 69 Best Thanksgiving Recipes” (cool) and “What is crab paste, anyway?” but a few days ago they published an article titled “4 Nintendo Switch Games For Food Lovers” – a list that included examples of games that “get it right” when it comes to portraying food. .
“Why is the food in video games almost always bad? “
Avalle isn’t wrong – the food in games is usually a means to an end, something that heals you or keeps you surviving a bit longer. “Almost universally,” Avalle says, “it feels like video game developers regard food as food and nothing more, dooming their characters to exist on pixelated meal replacement bars and nutritional shakes.” Even though we’re all game writers, not food writers, it’s hard to disagree.
But what are the four games?
Well, for “Cooperative Kitchen Chaos” the recommendation is sure to play any of the bright and stressful Overcooked games:
“After about 15 minutes you will find yourself using cooking jargon for the sake of convenience: ‘Behind the heat!’ I said as I walked past my friend with a saucepan. fucking ass? “she said, checking my knife skills. What a treat!”
If it’s more of a farm-to-table thing you’re looking for, look no further than Stardew Valley, says Avalle:
“Want to breed goats to produce award-winning goat? You can do it. Do you dream of owning a vineyard by the river? You can do it too. Gerald Stratford and get started growing massive pumpkins and other large veggies? You can and absolutely must do it. “
Avalle describes The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild as a “forager fantasy” with all of its mushrooms, fruits, and animals waiting to be turned into steak, but notes that BOTW’s greatest skill is to encourage curiosity. by food:
“Where BotW sets itself apart from other adventure games, culinary speaking, is that food is not only an essential tool for survival, but it is also an engine for more exploration. wild boar in the forest, you may come across a bushel of peppers spice.
Baked in a dish, these offer Link resistance to frostbite, allowing you to explore the frozen peaks without damage. There you might find an herb with a cooling effect, giving you access to scorching deserts, where another new ingredient might point you in another new direction. “
And finally, what every chef needs: a little zen. Unlike a real kitchen, however, Avalle finds peace in Cooking Simulator, which imagines a world in which people aren’t constantly shouting at you to make mashed potatoes:
“In a nutshell, Cooking Sim is my no-excuse brain softener where nothing matters, and that’s the point.
Even the things I don’t like – I feel like they were made for PC, so the controls on the Switch version are a bit clunky, and I still struggle to line things up when chopping and pouring, no matter how much I practice – are a constant reminder to step back and take stock. If I mess up a dish in the game, it doesn’t cost me anything and no one has to suffer from a burnt dinner. None of this is real I think, you do this to relax. And I do.”
Besides making us incredibly hungry, this article makes us think: if Bon Appétit can write on Nintendo Switch, does that mean we can write about food? We certainly have the qualifications – most of us eat at least three times a day!
Oh, and in case you were wondering, crab paste is “a mixture of fermented crab casings and roe” with vinegar. You use it to brush meats, apparently.
Which Switch games do you think are great examples of ‘getting it right’ when it comes to food? Let us know in the comments!
And Bon Appétit, if you are reading this: we love you very much, and you are welcome on our land, as long as you share what you have cooked.