Looking to cook up a storm in VR? We’ve got you covered — here’s our list of the best VR cooking and food games on Quest, PC VR and PSVR.
The gaming industry, and more recently the VR industry, has a bit of a love affair with the cooking genre. There’s just something about chopping, frying and assembling food in virtual reality that is so attractive to developers and players alike.
Luckily, we’re now at the stage where we have enough games to assemble a list of the top five cooking and food games across all VR platforms. We’ve ranked them from worst to best, but realistically each game brings something different to the genre — any of these are good options, depending on what you’re looking for.
5. Job Simulator – Quest, PSVR, PC VR
This is one of the oldest VR games on this list, dating all the way back to a release on the original Vive headset in 2016. It’s also not technically a full cooking game in and of itself. Job Simulator sees you take on menial tasks across a few different levels set in different work environments – a car repair shop, a convenience store, a boring office cubicle and, most importantly, behind the grill at a restaurant.
It’s that last level that gets Job Simulator a spot on this list — it’s basically the original cooking game for VR, one of the first to grace us with its presence. Since its beginnings on the Vive, Job Simulator has released on loads more platforms, including Quest 2 with enhancements, and received new modes and levels. It consistently features on the PSVR top seller charts each month and, as of January 2020, it reached 1 million units sold across all platforms.
4. Clash of Chefs VR – Quest, PC VR
Clash of Chefs VR takes the age-old premise of many cooking games – prepare food with increasingly complex ingredients and methods, for an increasingly impatient and growing customer base. There’s four kitchens with different cuisines – American, Italian, Japanese, and Mexican – but regardless of which you find yourself in, the name of the game is time management under pressure.
There’s a fair amount of content for each kitchen and there’s also a competitive multiplayer mode as well, where you are pitted against others and can throw knives or plates at your opponent chefs to disrupt them.
Clash of Chefs is a solid entry in the list, but it doesn’t bring anything particularly new to the genre. Still, if you want something simple and tested, this might be your go-to.
3. Cooking Simulator VR – PC VR
Despite the ‘simulator’ tag, this is really a part-authentic, part-slapstick mixture of cooking interactions featuring hundreds of dishes and a wide range of ingredients. As expected though, it’s all about time management and steady hands here. There’s a big focus on precision — the game will ask you to season food a specific amount, or cut items into perfectly equal pieces, which isn’t always easy with VR controllers.
There’s a career mode and a sandbox mode. Career mode will see you open a restaurant and gradually move through a selection of dishes, earning money to buy new items and upgrade your setup. The sandbox mode focuses more on fun and silliness — throw food, start fires, do whatever you want.
2. Lost Recipes – Quest
Lost Recipes is perhaps the most markedly different title on this list – where most cooking games focus on precision, pressure and time management, Lost Recipes strips this away entirely. It falls somewhere between a game, simulator and educational tool — instead of working to a clock, you simply follow the recipe at your own pace with almost no external pressure. It’s all about learning and taking your time, accurately reproducing authentic recipes from three ancient cultures.
It’s a short experience, because it’s essentially about learning how to cook these dishes and understanding the meaning behind them. It’s a slow, meditative and really special VR experience. The most amazing part is that its structured in a way that will let you take what you’ve learnt and apply it to your own cooking. I managed to cook the steamed fish in real life after playing through the level in Lost Recipes — it’s quite an amazing achievement from Schell Games.
If you want something more laid back that will focus on teaching you about the recipes and how to cook them, then Lost Recipes is your best bet.
1. Cook-Out: A Sandwich Tale – Quest, PC VR
On the opposite end of the spectrum, if you want VR’s closest experience to frantic console and PC game Overcooked, then Cook-Out: A Sandwich Tale is the game for you. This is a multiplayer-focused title that will require you and your friends to cooperate under increasingly stressful conditions to make sandwiches for impatient customers.
It’s all about the balance between hectic action and overwhelming chaos — as orders come in, you’ll need to work together to make sure each sandwich gets the right ingredients, in the right order. Some players will only have select ingredients in their fridge, requiring you to communicate with the other players to make sure everyone has what they need. It can be hectic and difficult, but it nails converting that chaotic and stressful Overcooked style of gameplay to a VR headset.
What’s your favorite cooking game on VR platforms? Let us know in the comments below.