There’s a new simulation game on the way from the developers of Gas Station Simulator, and this one is even more fun and has more mechanics and customization. The demo for Food Truck Simulator is here, and while a little buggy in this early stage, the gameplay has proven to be a blast that might give Cooking Simulator some real competition. The mechanics of cooking and operating a food truck are fun on their own, but like Gas Station Simulator, this game goes beyond just the basics of running a business. There are things to do outside of the kitchen, and this game has its own comedic flair and story to tell.
Food Truck Simulator‘s demo gives a glimpse into not just the life of a food truck owner, but someone trying to keep the family business going. There is a lot to do in true simulator fashion, but Drago Entertainment likes to add a little extra to their simulator games to make them stand out. It goes beyond cooking perfectly, caring for the truck and upgrading things. There’s rivalry, racing and mayhem in between flipping burgers and making sure there’s enough cheese in both the onboard fridge and the player’s pocket to keep going.
Food Truck Simulator has a story to tell, although it’s less seedy than Gas Station Simulator‘s. It follows a character who decides to start up his dad’s old food truck business. His father was very proud of the truck and always took care of it himself and even entered contests. The vehicle is a little older now, but the game uses this to set up the tutorial by having the player restore it. Once it’s ready, the main character can take over the business and get things rolling.
There are a few different things going on here gameplay-wise, as there is more to running a food truck than just preparing the food. Players will have to purchase ingredients, which goes beyond just ordering it and food appearing in the truck. They will have to actually be picked up from the store. Plus, ingredients can go bad over time, and to counter this, they have to be properly stored. Gas or propane is also needed to run the grill and fryer and will need to be resupplied when it runs out. There are more layers to operating the truck than just cooking, and it fits perfectly with the simulator style.
Making the food itself is very reminiscent of Cooking Simulator‘s mechanics, but simplified, which fits perfectly with a food truck’s more limited menu. The demo currently only has burgers and fries, but there is likely more variety on the way to change things up when the full game releases. Making burgers involves cooking them on the grill, along with some toppings, depending on the order. Instead of just waiting until the patty is cooked however, players will have to make sure it’s grilled to the customer’s taste — rare, medium or well-done. Sometimes buns are requested to be toasted, sometimes they aren’t.
There are a number of order combinations to keep things interesting. Players will also have to slice certain foods and place requested toppings in order. Another similarity to Cooking Simulator is that orders have customer ratings which contribute to tips and leveling the food truck’s prestige, which can increase popularity and open up new areas of the city to serve.
Speaking of the city, it’s not just a map to click on to teleport from point A to point B. Players will actually get to drive the food truck, day and night, which was unexpected and is a great addition. The map isn’t large, but still a good size to drive around. There are closed roads, traffic and new areas for players to unlock. If the player is into Grand Theft Auto-type behavior, they can absolutely run over people, play chicken with other vehicles and generally cause destruction and mayhem around the city without penalties. There is also some great music on the in-game radio to enjoy while driving around town or working.
Driving feels a little clunky, but it should as the food truck is an awkward vehicle containing a kitchen. Players will need to make sure the truck is gassed up to get around. They’ll have to drive to popular spots to sell food. With supplies in particular, players will have to race against the clock to keep the food fresh and the business going. Supplies can be bought at a discount, but there is a time limit to get it, which means driving to the store quickly. Another reason to drive around town is to find collectables, which actually contribute to improving and customizing the truck.
Both the inside and outside of the food truck are customizable and upgradable. Players can purchase or find additional parts like tires and bumpers, as well as customize the truck’s look. These are limited in the demo, but there’s enough to hint at how deep it will be in the full game. The truck’s logo or side decals can be changed, it can be painted a few different colors and its lights can be swapped out. The interior has more gameplay-oriented upgrades like bigger and better grills, adding a deep-fryer, adding freezers and more. All of this is done from the game’s main hub, the garage, which can also be explored. It makes driving the truck and interacting with it fun and interesting because it goes beyond just what happens within it.
Food Truck Simulator is also a good-looking game. There are some issues at this stage of its creation, and while that’s to be expected early on, some bugs can mean having to reload a save. For example, hitting the “flip truck around” button while exiting the garage will cause the truck to become one with the wall. Generally, though, issues are minimal, and the game runs smoothly, has some great sound effects and music, and is fun to play. While short, Food Truck Simulator‘s demo is a blast, with many different elements contributing to the player’s experience. It bodes well for the final product, and it will be great to see what else is added and improved when it launches.
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