What's Cooking? With Jamie Oliver

Jamie Oliver can **** off. I didn't mind him so much back in the nineties, when all he did was ponce about saying "wicked" while cooking tofu burgers for Jamiroquai. Now he can't stop swearing all over the television for no good ****ing reason, which everyone knows is my job, yes? And he's going round telling people to eat more cabbage and bananas, when I'm trying to get them to eat more veal and horses.

Now he's even done a ****ing videogame, just like me. I suppose he thinks he's ****ing clever, putting 100 recipes in his - that's nearly three times the number in Hell's Kitchen. What's more, they're properly interactive. Jamie takes you through each recipe step-by-step, and so you don't get **** all over the DS you can progress through them by saying "next" into the microphone. However, saying "Hurry the **** up, what's your ****ing problem you stupid ****ing ****," doesn't work, so two points off for that.

I have to admit there's an excellent range of recipes to choose from, and most of them aren't ****. They're also pretty easy to follow, though it would have been good to have some instructional videos like in Cooking Guide: Can't Decide What to Eat. Come on Jamie, if Nintendo can manage it I'm sure it wouldn't ****ing kill you, yes? At least it's Jamie's actual voice talking you through the recipes - though it appears to have been digitised by the people who worked on my game, using the same cheese-grater-and-bucket-of-gravel technique. ****s.

There's an extensive selection of filters to help you choose recipes. You can search by ingredients, prep time, meal type and all of that *******s. You can add ingredients to a digital shopping list, if you're the type of person who doesn't feel like a **** walking round Sainsbury's holding a ****ing videogames machine. It's probably fine if you're the type of person who doesn't feel like a **** walking round Sainsbury's followed by a ****ing video camera, saying things like, "Why not try putting some jam on some bread?" in exchange for 90 million pounds a day. Yes? ****.

At least he got rid of that stupid ****ing scooter.

Anyway, the recipe book bit in What's Cooking? is good, I suppose. The game bit, however, is ****ing ****. There are three modes to choose from, and they all involve ****ing about in your virtual kitchen. Here you'll find ingredients, utensils, serving dishes, saucepans and all the usual old ****, along with a working sink, stove and oven.

In Test Kitchen mode, there are lessons to teach you about cooking virtual food; how to wash, chop, boil, bake, plate up and all that *******s. These are overly-complicated and tedious, and there's no points, reward or penalty system. Let's say you decide to ignore Jamie's instructions for making pancakes completely, and instead whisk the prawns up with some orange juice and serve on a bed of Marmite. Jamie will still announce you've done a "Great job!" instead of calling you a stupid ****ing **** like a proper chef, yes?

The Get Stuck In mode lets you play around with the ingredients and equipment so you can try out your own recipes. You can't taste the finished results though, obviously, so there's no ****ing point.

The most game-like mode is Time Attack, where you have to complete specific challenges such as "Fry an egg in one minute". Sounds easy but there are usually a ridiculous amount of steps to go through, and no hints as to what they all are. So if you don't realise you need the spatula instead of the wooden spoon, yes, you're ****ed. I couldn't even work out how to fry a ****ing egg, to be honest, and I've got 13 Michelin ****ing stars.

Basically What's Cooking? With Jamie ****ing Oliver is great if you're after an interactive cookbook. There's an extensive selection of excellent recipes, the instructions are easy to follow, the step-by-step system works well and the shopping list feature is useful. If you're after an actual ****ing game, though, **** this ****. Jamie should have put his *******s on and ripped off an existing classic, like me. Stupid ****ing ****-faced ***** **** ***** ********* *** ** ***** ****. Yes?


About the author

Ellie Gibson

Ellie Gibson


Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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