Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

Where are the food fantasy games?

Most games are about fulfilling fantasies. You want to kill people and destroy stuff? Of course you do, its called testosterone. Here! have a gun and a flamethrower and grenades, or even a space-cruiser with big scary laser guns. RAWWWRRRR! Want to be rich and powerful? Here, have a kingdom to rule and a vast business to run. Want to have sex with attractive people? Errr…well we cant quite manage that, but here! Look at this Elf maiden in suspiciously scanty armor/lingerie.

Want to eat an enormous amount of incredibly unhealthy food? Err….. Diner Dash? maybe? Err… I dunno, there is a game about fishing I think?

It seems unusual to me that EAT as a verb is not really catered to in the subconscious mind of the gamer. In a time where game designers use MRI scanners to identify what makes gamers come back for more, it seems a big part of our conscious/subconscious desires are being ignored. Sure, people want to kill/hunt and people want to be be the best/biggest/fastest, but where is the FEED ME urge being satisfied in games. I don’t mean desire in general. Desire for conquest, whether it be military, personal or sexual, is being addressed in multiple ways, in multiple games. Why are there not games that prey on our most immediate need, the need for food?


An advert with a busty elf in it will get more clicks than an advert without one, but surely an advert with a picture of donuts in also triggers the same sort of effect. Doubtless some game designers think a game where you stare at Lara Crofts buttocks all the time is a great way to appeal to people, but where is the game that has me staring at bacon sandwiches all the time? or listening to food sizzling.

I’ve been playing some ‘diner’ game on steam, and its ok, but it just scratches my time management/casual simulation game urge. The pop-ups that let me select a donut machine are just a simulation draw, they don’t really revel in the LOOK DONUTS side of things.  think its a missed opportunity.

Gratuitous Donut Battles. You know it makes sense.

9 thoughts on Where are the food fantasy games?

  1. Maybe you can make it work. And depending on your definition there may already be a few games out there. I remember a pizzeria chain simulation from the DOS-era called “Pizza Connection”, where you could design your own pizza toppings.
    I think the reason why it’s not common to see this type of game is, that to really appeal to the basic urge related to food, you need smell and taste. I think only the visuals won’t really cut it.

  2. This game is called “Don’t starve” and it’s awesome. OK, it’s not only about food, maybe even not mostly about food. But it does satisfy the desire to eat lots of fancy things.

  3. I think the primary issue with this idea is the ease of fantasy fulfillment. The fantasies around aggression and violence can’t be fulfilled without serious side effects. Similarly the lust based ones are difficult / impossible for most people to fulfill. Finally the dominance / success style ones are completely out of reach.
    They are all things that you need to simulate to experience. Eating unhealthy things however is easy. If you live in the western world it is simple to satisfy almost any food craving. There is no obstacle or challenge to it.
    That’s why I think that type of games has less traction

    1. This is the answer right here. As a nobody with not much money living in first world, I have a huge range of things that I can actually eat in real life very easily. It’s been done. It’s what makes everything else possible. It’s the foundation of every other appetite for unsatisfying soul-destroying junk that we have. It’s the number one reason why we are all spiritually dead, dead, stone cold dead and going to hell. But that’s another story.

      There are games about food, but they are either crafting games about making it or business/world domination games about selling it.

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