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Gourmet Squad
  opened by paleface at 21:01:02 03/18/23  
  last modified by paleface at 21:09:35 03/18/23  
  paleface [sys=SNES; cat=Beat_em_up; loc=NA]

Playing through "Gourmet Squad"--aka "Gourmet Warriors" (Steam, etc) / "Gourmet Sentai Bara Yarou" (GameFAQs, etc) / "Bishoku Sentai Barayarō" (Wikipedia) / ""Rose Rascals: Gourmet Squadron" (Wikipedia) / "Gourmet Sentai Bara Bastard" (Google Translate) from Steam, in my own installation of emulator Mesen: I copied the "game" file from the "res" folder where Steam installed it, renamed it to .sfc file, since it's a Super Famicom game ROM, zipped it, and ran it with Mesen. Default "Medium" difficulty.
Two of the three main developers for the Super Famicom game at Japanese studio Winds--one of whom would go on to do Astro Boy: Omega Factor (GBA) at Treasure (see entry 661)--had worked on Choaniki, and there are direct Choaniki vibes here in various beefy fleshpots and general weirdness.
The "Gourmet" part refers to food items that pop out of defeated enemies and which you take back to your giant robot chef between levels, who dices and fries two specific ingredients you choose into a meal that restores a certain amount of your health, depending on what it was and maybe your character? Of which there are three regular playable characters--the girl character being knock-kneed fan-servicey ; P--and various of the enemy character you can play using input codes--or rather, try to play, as most of them aren't actually very good.
They mostly aren't very dangerous when controlled by the CPU, either, and really the minor health regain you may get from the whole cooking side of things is fairly pointless for the short stages and their unlimited continues, and the wimpy AI; at best it's kind of a funky rhythm game where you go for two punch combos to heavy-stun-state them so you can use a heavy grab finisher, which is kind of fun.
There's a mechanic by which hitting an AI with a certain move will put them in a "spiked" state with their head embedded in the ground and you can jump on their upraised feet and do special attack moves on them, but it seems pretty pointless given the easier grabs. Several special hit-inflicting versions of the pose you can do (with the Pose button) also seem pretty pointless.
A nice touch for single player is the powerup that spawns a CPU-controlled ally character who fights alongside you and eh well you learn not to hit accidentally TOO often maybe.
Really gorgeous pixel art at times and pretty decent music doesn't hurt. Probably not much replay value single-player though given the not-so-challenging difficulty--okay I haven't played it on the hard ("Spicy") difficulty level, but given that switching to easy ("Mild") for a bit just reduced the number of enemies, Spicy will probably just be more of the rather lightweight enemies. Even the bosses (on regular difficulty) are a breeze once you know their gimmick, if they have one.

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