Game: Head Chef
Publisher: CStar Games
Designer: Peter Cricchiola
Duration: 5-30 minutes
Time to Learn: 5-10 minutes
Head Chef Board Game Review
The Mayor of Eatsville is looking for a delicious restaurant. It’s your job to step up and fight to be the most successful place in town! Create foods off a menu to gain fame and popularity as you move up the ladder of success.
Players begin by choosing a character from fifteen different cards. Each character has a unique special ability. Players also get a set of power cards. These allow players various actions to use throughout the games. In a solo game, a certain number of power cards are stacked. When playing with two or more players, each player gets one of each power card that can be used one time per game. Players are given five wooden cubes: one marks the amount of earned fame on their player board while the other four are used as action markers.
The starting player is dealt one card, the second player two cards, and so on. These cards are referred to as your fridge. Each player uses their cubes to mark their actions by moving the cube across their character card. An action consists of three options: A player can pick a card from the deck and add it to their fridge, play an existing food from the fridge or play a power card and turn it face down on the table.
Fame is earned by playing foods from your fridge and moving up the path from a food truck, to a café, and finally a restaurant. A player may not exceed four cards in their fridge. They discard their leftovers, then other players, in clockwise order, can buy them using a single action cube. As players move up the ladder of success, the must discard one action cube to pass the café after earning ten fame. After reaching 20 fame, players also must discard two actions cubes to open their restaurant. The first player to earn 20 fame by using their power cards and creating foods from the menu is the winner.
Play differs slightly when playing solo. There is a set pile of power cards, one being played each turn. A player is also allowed to have five cards in their fridge. A player is racing the deck to reach their restaurant with 20 fame and discarding 2 action cubes.
This is a great family fun gateway game! The game play is different enough from other games that you feel like you’re trying something fresh and new. Power cards allow players to have a bit of strategy and friendly combat toward other players.
I love the option of solo play, which did seem a bit easy, but really, who doesn't like to win? Now I can win by myself when friends and family have plans.
The large number of character cards allows for lot of replayability. I would definitely recommend keeping this game close to whip up a great evening with friends and family.
Gateway Game Score: 9/10
Overall Rating: 9/10
- You get to cook…without cooking!
- No cooking mess to clean up!
- Cute art work
- Easy to learn
- Lots of character replayability!
- Individual player boards are all identical
Board Game Review by Head Chef Annamous