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Critic ReviewsMobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
WomenGamers.com (May 06, 2008)
There are a few places where the stylus doesn't seem to work very well and it's too bad. Otherwise the game is well made, and lots of effort went into pleasing the fans that loved the first game. Cooking Mama 2 and the Cooking Mama franchise in general could be considered to be the premier cooking games in the genre. This one is definitely a buy. I give Cooking Mama 2: Dinner With Friends a satisfied and sated 8.5.
GamingTrend (Apr, 2008)
Cooking Mama 2 isn't a bad game by any means. If you're a fan of the first one, or like minigames in general, this is really a very good game to pick up, and is also quite good for children and younger players. The addition of the "Let's Cook" mode can put a bit of emphasis on memorization, which can give fans of the Brain Age series a nice little mental workout. Even if you haven't played the original, this title is worth a look unless you are completely adverse to minigames and/or bright colors and cute graphics.
Worth Playing (Feb 23, 2008)
At any rate, quibbles with Cooking Mama 2: Dinner with Friends are fairly minor. You'll quickly shrug off the bad in favor of the good. Mama herself is a charming guide through the apparently one-room world of cooking, and each challenge she throws your way will have you poking and prodding until you're beside yourself with glee. Whether you play for five minutes or 50, you'll never be bored. At the very least, you should give CM2 a rental.
Game Chronicles (Feb 29, 2008)
My final thought on this game is that it is a great, fun, and family friendly game. I would have no reason not to let children of all ages play this game. The instructions are pretty simple and controlling the stylus is pretty easy throughout. Overall this game offers plenty of game time and is worth the thirty dollars to buy it. I would also suggest getting the Wii version of this game it adds a whole other level of difficulty. I really enjoyed creating all the different entrees the game has to offer. You will notice while playing that many of the dishes are Asian in origin. I guess you will be able to figure out where this game was created. I liked this game and would suggest it to anyone. It’s not an “A” game but it is super fun and I know you will enjoy it.
1UP (Nov 14, 2007)
Still, even with its quirks, I find it hard to put the game down -- it's so easy and fun to hop back in and whip up a couple quick, satisfying dishes. In its silly simplicity, Cooking Mama does what many can't: keep me heading back to the kitchen for one more snack.
Gamers' Temple, The (Dec 05, 2007)
Offering tons of variety and some nifty cooking controls, Mama is ready to challenge our stylus skills once again through her cooking mini games... and this time, she has brought along her friends to test us and see if her meal guidance is paying off.
Cheat Code Central (Nov 29, 2007)
Cooking Mama is an acquired taste. If you enjoyed the original, then you'll easily get a huge amount of play from Dinner with Friends. The new recipes alone are well worth the time, and throwing in many new steps and rewards freshens the gameplay. There aren't a lot of major changes to the original formula. At its core, it's essentially the same game only a bit better. If you missed Cooking Mama the first time around it's best to skip the appetizers and go right for the main course with Dinner with Friends. You won't regret it.
GameAlmighty.com (Nov 30, 2007)
When it comes right down to it this game is perfect for the newbies out there that have only heard of Cooking Mama and have wanted to try it out. But for those of you that invested time in the original game, it may be best to stay with that one, as this offers nothing new for you.
GameTrailers (Dec 09, 2007)
Cooking Mama 2 doesn’t really bring anything new to the dinner table, but that’s not really a bad thing. It just offers a heaping helping more of the gameplay fans of the original game fell in love with, and chances are, most will find that filling enough.
Nintendo-Online.de (Nov 29, 2008)
Mit über einem Jahr Verspätung erreicht „Cooking Mama 2: Alle zu Tisch“ endlich auch Deutschland und bereitet noch immer so viel Spaß wie die Fassungen auf DS und Wii. Das Rezept-Repertoire wurde durch viele neue Gerichte ergänzt, wodurch die nötige Abwechslung im Kochalltag geboten wird. Leider sind trotzdem viele der Rezepte schon totgespielt, gerade das Kochen auf dem Herd raubte mir beim Testen durch den immer gleichen Spielablauf den letzten Nerv. Wer dringend Minispiel-Nachschub auf seinem DS braucht, liegt mit „Cooking Mama 2: Alle zu Tisch“ aber auf jeden Fall richtig.
Kombo.com (Jan 28, 2008)
Cooking Mama: Dinner with Friends is not a bad game; it just doesn't expand on the franchise as much as a new sequel should. The premise is the same as before, and new recipes aside, it is still the same kitchen with just new ingredients. Basically, if you enjoyed the first game and found it charming enough, than you'll have no problem adapting to Mama's newest kitchen craze and have fun creating new, delicious dishes. However, if you didn't enjoy Mama's previous culinary efforts, you'll be better off skipping dinner this time around.
Game Informer Magazine (Dec, 2007)
This Cooking Mama sequel comes out slightly overdone with some tasty new sauce on top. Most of the minigames are unchanged, with a few new ones (i.e. using a blender) sprinkled in. A new mode has players cooking for "friends" in a challenging non-stop barrage of preparation. New unlockables include kitchens and outfits for Mama --- nothing super awesome, but it's nice to have a reason to go for more gold ratings. Multiplayer is pretty bare bones, but at least you only need one cart. This is worth a look for Cooking Mama noobs, but veterans might find it a little stale.
Armchair Empire, The (Feb 08, 2008)
Cooking Mama 2: Dinner with Friends is one of those games that leave you scratching your head when it comes to placing it in a neat genre category, but it can safely be said that it's one of those games that's a non-game that is difficult to put down.
GamePro (US) (Nov 13, 2007)
The game isn't perfect--the game still has trouble picking up your commands on the touchscreen at times and some tasks require numerous tries before you can even figure out what to do--but Cooking Mama 2 is a winner without a shadow of a doubt. Every gamer, from the hardcore to the casual, should put in some time with this one. Just don't play it hungry or you will drool all over yourself.
IGN (Nov 21, 2007)
Cooking Mama 2 is just as fun as the previous game. In fact, it pretty much is the previous game. The new stuff in Dinner with Friends is so arbitrary that they don't warrant the purchase for people that already whipped up meals a year ago. But for those that came late to dinner, Cooking Mama 2 is a slightly more presentable version that is fun for the casual gaming crowd.
HonestGamers (Staff reviews only) (Dec 01, 2007)
If you’re looking for engaging plotlines, developing characters, or hard-fought victories, the Cooking Mama series is not for you. It thrives on overbearing adorability, quick accomplishments, and hopefully, the player’s drive to keep improving. At least the Let’s Cook mode pulled me through a second day of Dinner With Friends, which is twice the time I spent with the original.
GameZone (Dec 03, 2007)
It’s fun when a recipe is completed correctly and is rated high enough for a medal. This means that players can accessorize Mama or her kitchen. This adds an incentive to play, but even without this “store," the mini-games themselves are fun enough for short periods of time. The style of the game is cute, and Mama has a pretty funny accent. While I have to admit that I like Cake Mania and Diner Dash better, Cooking Mama 2 is good fun for short gaming sessions. A good casual game for the DS, best for players who don’t already have the first one.
GotNext (Dec 11, 2007)
It's probably unfair to harp on Cooking Mama 2's easygoing nature though. It's a cute and charming kids' game, after all, with a lot of variety centered around a worthwhile activity. The number of mini-games is impressive, and the DS's touch screen is consistently put to good use as you tap a sieve to sift flour, or draw lines to slice up items and turn handles on a variety of devices. Cooking Mama 2 won't teach you to cook any more than Guitar Hero teaches guitar, but it reproduces the activities in a fun and accessible style. It's cute and casual, Mama is voiced by someone who's obviously never spoken a word of English in her life, and there's even single-cart four-player available. All they need to do is throw in an Adult difficulty level requiring more speed and precision and it'd be as close to perfect as this kind of game can get. Until that happens, though, it's best to get Cooking Mama 2: Dinner With Friends for a younger relative, and then borrow it when they aren't looking.
NintendoWorldReport (Dec 19, 2007)
Ultimately, Cooking Mama 2: Dinner With Friends is a pretty likeable game. The presentation and gameplay are both simple and charming, and the budget price makes the shallow premise and minor faults completely forgivable. It isn't particularly meaningful, but not every game needs to be. This one will briefly steal your attention and keep you begrudgingly coming back for one more session. That's more than I can say for many full-priced DS games.
GameSpy (Dec 04, 2007)
The bad multiplayer choices compromise a game that's otherwise very enjoyable: Dinner with Friends is fresh and well-made, with responsive controls and lots to do, but when it comes to sharing it with friends it lacks even the basics of fun. The best thing is to play it alone, trying to unlock all the available items -- and there are a ton of them -- or to earn a gold medal on every recipe. Graphics and music all contribute in delivering one of the cutest game experiences available outside of Japan, with peculiar characters and a gorgeous presentation of the completed recipes. It's simple fun, but players will probably go back to it every once in a while just to enjoy a relaxing game experience that feels different from everything else.
Game Freaks 365 (2007)
There really is not much more to say about Cooking Mama 2; essentially it is just an update of last year's game with new dishes and unlockable items. Single-card multiplayer is available for kids who want to cook with their friends or siblings, and the game only costs $20. Still, I'd have a tough time recommending it to anyone who had their fill with the first game.
The Review Busters (2007)
Cooking Mama 2: Dinner with Friends has this certain charm to it that makes it a real fun game. I played the hell out of the first game so it made sense to get the second. All I wish is the developers put more new aspects into the game. Earning new costumes is not enough to justify an extra $10.
FileFactory Games / Gameworld Network (Dec 07, 2007)
If you’re a die-hard Cooking Mama fan, or are looking for a DS game for your 7-year-old daughter/niece who likes cooking, then I would heartily recommend Cooking Mama 2. Anyone else though would be better advised to save your thirty bucks for one of the many other good games that have come out in November.
Eurogamer.net (UK) (Mar 05, 2008)
Given its similarity to the first, it's hardly an essential purchase, but if you haven't experienced it already then this is the one to get, or at least sneak a go on after buying it for a younger member of the family. It's simple, but has noodles of charm [that's it - Ed].
Jeuxvideo.com (Feb 12, 2008)
Quitte à disposer d'un Wario Ware-like sur DS, autant se tourner vers le plus édifiant. Cooking Mama 2 ne dispose plus de l'effet de surprise du premier volet, mais il parvient une fois de plus à nous séduire grâce à son gameplay accessible, amusant, et très sensoriel. Et bien que l'aspect pédagogique et expérimental souffre de l'abandon de certaines options, cette suite parvient à se justifier grâce à un nouveau mode de jeu qui en relance l'intérêt. Sur ce, je vous laisse : j'ai un émincé de porc sur le feu.
GameDaily (Nov 30, 2007)
In all other aspects, especially with the visuals and audio, Cooking Mama 2 pans out much like its predecessor. There have been no significant upgrades, but if you find the presentation to be as adorably cute as the developers intended, then you'll enjoy your stay in Mama's kitchen. For those that already own the first Cooking Mama, there is little to warrant purchasing this sequel unless you crave more recipes. For newcomers however, this game still possesses undeniable charm and some of the most unique uses of the DS stylus we've seen yet.
GameSpot (Dec 07, 2007)
Again, there's nothing decidedly wrong with Cooking Mama 2. It's a solid, if entirely predictable follow-up to its predecessor. Nothing that worked in the previous game is suddenly broken here, but by the same token, none of what was problematic or missing from the first game is adjusted or added. It's more Cooking Mama for people who just want more Cooking Mama. It'll be a decent enough time-waster for the people who went nuts for the first game because this one delivers just as much in the way of cutesey-wutsey charm and easy-to-pick-up minigames. But if you played last year's game and prefer a bit more forward progress from your sequels, you can safely leave this one alone.