BURGERTIME / Data East / Arcade

I'm partial to a giant burger special once or twice a year at the local Black Bear Diner, but even that colossal burger has nothing on the giant-sized sandwiches that chef Peter Pepper is serving up. Apparently he makes a good trade in serving burgers to King Kong and Godzilla, and has built an industrial contraption that apparently cooks everything up and drops it onto a system of rails and ladders for him, which he then uses to walk over each burger part with his dirty shoes and push down into a completed sandwich.

It's the perfect business scheme, except that three disgruntled anthromorphic food items apparently don't care for the competition and want to see Pepper dead. An angry hot dog, pickle and egg will chase you around each level as you try to build your burgers, and if they catch you it is lights out for our chef. So he has to dodge these foes while putting the burgers together. Fortunately, they can be killed by dropping burger parts on them from above (apparently the giant monsters who eat these things don't notice either the footprints or the smashed dead bodies in them). Unfortunately they re-spawn a few seconds later and begin the chase anew. Pepper also has a stash of five dashes of pepper, which can be used to freeze a foe temporarily and allow him to run by them. As the burgers pile up, the foes get more and more aggravated, and come at Peter faster and faster.

Burgertime hearkens back to a great period of gaming, where games were focused on gameplay and fun, so you could get away with having some sort of absurd and off-the-wall concept like this. Now it's all about "realistic" simulations and angsty epics starring androgyenous fashion boys and .... grumble grumble grumble .... back in my day .... grumble grumble .... well anyway. The slightly stiff control and slightly slow pace of Burgertime can be a bit off-putting but once you get used to the quirks of the game, this is really one of the best maze-chase games ever created.

Videos :

* Gameplay Video