Cake Bash Review: Cream of the Crop
Let’s be honest: Whether you’re the type to visit the local bakery frequently or you simply enjoy an odd biscuit with your cup of tea (or coffee), many of us can’t resist indulging in the occasional sweet treat.
Usually seen as comfort food, sweets aren't traditionally associated with competition, especially a four-player brawler. But that’s exactly what Cake Bash aims to dispel.
Developed by High Tea Frog, this party game is a frantic multiplayer experience both online and locally. Though you can play the game's campaign mode alone against the AI, Cake Bash's wider appeal lies within its multiplayer component and party options. Tastefully, it delivers a thoroughly enjoyable time.
Cake Bash Review: Cream of the Crop
It’s a lot of fun with friends
If you ever wanted to beat up a cupcake as an eclair or have ever fancied wailing on other baked goods as a donut, Cake Bash has you covered in more ways than one.
Get Tasty is Cake Bash’s campaign mode, which can be played alone or with friends. It offers several rounds of games where players vie to become the tastiest cake. There are seven playable sweets available, all of which are based on common cakes and pastries, and each has its own name and different skins, adding a gentle touch of personality to the mix.
Depending on your performance in the campaign mode, Get Tasty rewards you with chocolate coins, which are used to buy cake toppings between rounds. Those toppings give you points as well, awarding bonuses if you get a matching set of three. Whoever has the most points at the end wins.
The rest of the game's action is split into two categories, Bash and mini-games. There are five Bash modes in total, each awarding points for completing set tasks.
Sweet Victory sees you collecting toppings for your cake and punching other players to knock theirs off. Fruity Pie has you throwing fruit onto a pie. Cookie Bash tasks you with smashing as many fortune cookies as possible. Hundreds and Thousands has you competing to gather the most sprinkles. And Sprinkler sees you holding onto your sprinklers for as long as possible.
All this mayhem occurs within several creatively designed arenas, too, taking your cakes to five hazardous locations. From a patio table to the sunny beach, each stage has a series of hazards, such as pigeons or beach balls, that players must carefully navigate, keeping action quite lively.
Individually, there isn’t much to these games, but as a collective, they offer good variety in bitesize portions, and it’s a lot of fun with friends.
It doesn’t take too long to unlock the bulk of this extra content, which is a shame, but it strongly encourages replayability to keep players coming back.
Bash games generally share the same gameplay mechanics: a standard attack that allows for quick combos, which can also be charged up for a “megabash” to stun opponents, and a dash that keeps cakes from getting hit. Adding more strategy to each game, the dash can only be used three times before it needs to be recharged — and it has a long cool down.
Weapons also drop onto stages, letting you whack other cakes with lollipops or launch throwable items like saltshakers, temporarily stunning your opponents. Put together, it's a basic set of gameplay mechanics but one that’s rather easy to pick up, letting anyone join without difficulty.
Minigames, on the other hand, are considerably shorter affairs, but these also diverge from the standard campaign gameplay. There are eight mini-games altogether, and that includes the world’s first Gateau Royale, Fork Knife, where players avoid getting hit by cutlery on a gradually shrinking cake.
Fondue or Die lets you skewer chocolate covered fruit for points, whereas Campfire lets you roast the finest marshmallows. Though they make for an enjoyable alternative to bash modes, certain minigames require more precision than you might expect from a game like Cake Bash, leading to some mistakes and a little frustration.
Progressing through Get Tasty unlocks each game for individual play, too, and each can be selected via the Recipe Mode.
Finally, Cake Bash also has unlockable collectibles in the form of new skins. Nabbing them all involves hitting set criteria, like playing three matches on a particular stage. It doesn’t take too long to unlock the bulk of this extra content, which is a shame, but it strongly encourages replayability to keep players coming back.
Cake Bash Review — The Bottom Line
- Excellent fun in multiplayer
- Great variety of modes
- Plenty of replayability
- Cute visual aesthetic
- Can unlock all the content pretty quickly
- Minigames feel a little too precise at times
There’s a lot to love about Cake Bash, and High Tea Frog has made an excellent party game for their debut title.
With a variety of entertaining games, some lively stages, and good replayability, it’s a fun experience, especially with friends. We only wish there was more of it on offer. Though some minigames feel a little finicky, it’s otherwise a sweet treat all around.
[Note: Coatsink provided the copy of Cake Bash used for this review.]