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Hands-on: Cooking Mama 3 (DS)


When we arrived at Majesco's booth, it was little surprise that the rep wanted to show us Cooking Mamm 3 first. It's a franchise that literally saved Majesco from bankruptcy, and it's no wonder why the company is so proud of it. So, with one new recipe to try, we dove right in.

The only recipe available to try was roasting marshmallows, which, oddly enough, is a bit more complex. We had to create the marshmallows from scratch, and, in true Mama form, this was accomplished through a series of minigames.

One thing we should mention about Cooking Mama 3 is that the game implements a nice addition from World Kitchen: saves. When you make a mistake during one of the recipe's steps, you're given a second chance through a brief minigame. For example, during the process of whipping eggs and cream and whatever else you use to make marshmallows, we went a bit too crazy and caused the whisk to go flying out of the bowl. Once it was airborn, we then tapped it and it went back into the bowl, allowing us to continue our whipping activities. It's a small addition, but something that helps to keep the flow of the game intact, and allows players to keep progressing in a recipe without going through a bunch of menus.

Aside from that, it's traditional Mama stuff. We had to flip powdered marshmallows onto a moving plate, and caught falling marshmallows on sticks. There was also the act of cooking these delicacies, where we had to poke them into the dirt around a huge fire, and turn them as they begun to brown. Clearly, the Japanese have a different idea about roasting marshmallows than those of us in the west.

Cooking Mama 3 looks like another hit for Majesco, with more recipes and minigames for anxious fans. It's kind of a tired statement, but Cooking Mama 3 is very much like the previous titles. And that's on purpose, because Majesco knows they have a hit franchise on its hands, and doesn't want to alienate the core fans of the franchise by mixing it up too much.

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