Hell's Kitchen Review
Hell's Kitchen box art
System: Wii, PC, DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: Ludia 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Ubisoft 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Sept. 9, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Teen 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Both the kitchen and the dining area are nicely detailed, but it's too bad the scenery doesn't change more throughout the game. Customers appear bland in contrast to the extremely lifelike Ramsay. Surprisingly, his voice work and likeness really make the experience a lot more enjoyable. Also, all the text in the game is very small and hard to read, but the inclusion of actual recipes, including ingredient lists and directions on how to make them, is a really cool touch.

Hell's Kitchen screenshot

Hell's Kitchen's lengthy main cooking campaign can be explored either solo or cooperatively. The latter lets two players wielding separate Wii Remotes work together through the kitchen portion of the game. This is a fun mode, though it requires you work together closely with your partner to avoid accidentally starting dishes at inopportune times. A head-to-head mode pits players against each other in hardcore kitchen matches. Aside from dropping you into the midst of a chaotic cooking scene full of pots and orders, the interesting trick here is only the player who prepared an ingredient can use it. Since only one of each ingredient is available for prep at a time, this creates an intensely cut-throat competitive cooking atmosphere.

Ramsay might get paid to be a total jerk, but his psychotic bravado lends a great deal of excitement to the culinary gaming genre. Admittedly, casual cooking games can be extremely addictive, but few turn up the heat as much as Hell's Kitchen. Getting cursed out because customers are getting $@%*# impatient or because you nearly set the $@%*# kitchen on fire is always worth a chuckle. Whether you follow the show religiously or not, this kitchen of malevolent design is definitely worth cooking in.

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

A lack of visual variety is noticeable in the restaurant design. Ramsay is highly detailed, yet the customers are not.
The Wii Remote controls are simple, fast, and smooth.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Background music is tolerable, but Ramsay's incessant bleeped-out swearing and constant berating is tirelessly entertaining.

Play Value
The intense cooking craziness is addictive, and five virtual weeks worth of increasingly challenging restaurant management is a recipe for fun.

Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Just like the contestants on the TV show, players must master all aspects of cooking: preparation, cooking, and service.
  • Chef Ramsay watches your every move and judges you as you progress - yelling, praising, or shutting down the kitchen if your skills don't meet his expectations.
  • As you progress, you'll gain access to authentic Gordon Ramsay recipes, including many that are exclusive to game owners.
  • In Career Mode, earn your stars to build your way up from a Single Star restaurant to a prestigious Five Star establishment. Then, continue to advance through seven more restaurant ranks. As your Star Rating advances, the recipes become more varied and intricate.
  • In Arcade Mode, concentrate your efforts solely on food preparation and cooking. The pressure builds as customers become increasingly more demanding. Can you keep up with the pressure before the time is up? Or will Chef Ramsay lose patience and close the kitchen?
  • Team up in Cooperative Multiplayer Mode with double cooking stations and shared ingredients. Play with a partner to advance through career mode.
  • Compete head to head in Competitive Multiplayer Mode to see who earns Chef Ramsay's praise and who goes home.

  • Screenshots / Images
    Hell's Kitchen screenshot - click to enlarge Hell's Kitchen screenshot - click to enlarge Hell's Kitchen screenshot - click to enlarge Hell's Kitchen screenshot - click to enlarge

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