Nintendo today released a game for its Nintendo DS system that proves just how much of a stranglehold the company has on the gaming public. The game, called Personal Trainer: Cooking, sounds similar to Majesco’s Cooking Mama games, but Nintendo bills it as a “personal training” game. If Majesco did the same, we’d all laugh them out of the building. So why don’t we do the same with Nintendo?
Well, because it really is somewhat different.
Personal Trainer: Cooking for Nintendo DS contains more than 240 dishes from dozens of countries around the world. The DS Chef, a friendly electronic cooking instructor, walks users through each step to make sure every dish comes out perfect and delicious.
Personal Trainer: Cooking also includes videos of various cooking techniques, such as how to properly julienne vegetables. The touch screen interface helps budding chefs check ingredients on an electronic shopping list they can take to the grocery store. It also lets them search recipes based on ingredients, number of calories or cooking time.
When a user’s hands are too covered in the business of cooking to use the touch screen, the voice-recognition feature comes in handy: Just tell the DS Chef to move on to the next step or repeat the last one.
Personal Trainer: Cooking builds on the social aspect of food, as well. Roommates can try out recipes together, or parents can involve their children in preparing dishes for the family. With a tap, users can even scale the quantity of their recipes based on the number of guests they expect.
Users can also customize their favorite recipes. For instance, if a user thinks a recipe tastes better with a pinch of oregano, he or she can jot that note directly onto the recipe using the Nintendo DS stylus and touch screen, and it’ll be saved for the next time the dish is prepared.
All of this begs the question, of course: why don’t you just do all this stuff for real in the kitchen, which would actually let you taste the end product?