Foodtruck Arena – Review
Follow Genre: Arcade Game
Developer: Cat-astrophe Games
Publisher: Ultimate Games
Platform: Switch, PC
Tested on: Switch

Foodtruck Arena – Review

Site Score
Good: Decent character illustrations
Bad: Inferior to Rocket League in every way. No, really.
User Score
(2 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (2 votes cast)

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: a video game where players use vehicles to knock a ball into a goal. No, we’re not talking about Rocket League. The vehicles we’re talking about are foodtrucks and the game is Foodtruck Arena. That’s right, our friends over at Ultimate Games are teaming up with developer Cat-astrophe Games to bring you a completely original game *cough* with a unique concept *cough*. Jokes aside, even a ripoff can be good, so we decided to take a look at Foodtruck Arena to find out whether it’s a delicious serving of gameplay or if it’s a rotten dish.


Although each of the eight foodtrucks has a driver, and each of these drivers comes with a backstory, there isn’t a real narrative that ties Foodtruck Arena together. Even the campaign mode has very little to offer other than “foodtruck driver x is now traveling the world to take on opponents in battles”. There are some vague references to a worldwide tournament with the participants being chefs that are competing for a culinary title, but it’s never made clear how knocking a massive tomato into an opponent’s goal relates to one’s cooking skills. You do get short comic book-styled story segments upon stage completion but these don’t really stand out or feel engaging. As a result, it’s hard to relate to these characters, and subsequently, care about their interactions with the other chefs.


The visuals are a bit of a mixed bag, with the 3D models looking decent and the scenery surrounding the arenas adding a bit of atmosphere. It’s not enough, however, to make the game pop, partly due to the drab color scheme that is employed throughout the game. While we can appreciate pastel-colored visuals under the right circumstances, they feel inappropriate for a game that is supposed as action-focused as Food Truck Arena. This is one of the few instances where it would’ve been advisable to have gone for bright, garish colors, but the game fails to deliver on that front. On the other hand, and this is one of the game’s few redeeming features, the character illustrations are really good. In fact, they feel a bit wasted on the irredeemable crapfest that the rest of the game turned out to be.


Foodtruck Arena’s soundscape is adequate but bland overall, with nothing really standing out here. There is no voice acting present. The trucks make truck sounds of course, and the ambient environmental sounds, such as the tomato bouncing and the invisible crowd cheering when a point is scored are alright. The soundtrack is built around the same basic tune, albeit slightly changed to match the location of the arena you are playing at, by adding some local color with different instruments.


Let’s not beat around the bush here: Foodtruck Arena is a stripped-down version of Rocket League. Players take control of a foodtruck and have to try to maneuver a ball into their opponent’s goal, with the game being presented from a top-down perspective. The first player to score a set number of points or that makes the most goals within the time limit wins the game. It’s a very simple concept that should work in theory, but somehow Cat-astrophe Games (what’s in a name?) managed to suck all of the fun out of the on-screen action. Controlling the trucks feels tedious and unintuitive, and the game simply doesn’t offer enough content for the insultingly high price. Considering Rocket League is available as a free-to-play title, you’re much better off spending your hard-earned cash on premium content there rather than waste it on Foodtruck Arena.

Let’s break down what you’re getting here: when you start the game, there are four foodtrucks available, with another four that can be unlocked by progressing through the tournament mode. This mode sees you take on a series of opponents in 1 vs. 1 (and occasionally 2 vs. 2) bouts, where the aim is to -you guessed it- score three points before progressing on to the next round. Unlike what you’d expect, however, only the bare minimum is done to shake things up during the campaign, and every round plays out pretty much exactly the same. The scenery around the arena may change, and there are small environmental changes, such as speed bumps or snow, but the impact of these is only very minor. The only real gameplay difference is that your opponents have access to a different special move. Speaking of special moves, each food truck has one, but the game doesn’t explain to you what these do or how to use them. There isn’t a tutorial here either, and you’re left to your own devices to figure out how things work.

Not that it’s difficult to figure things out, as the game doesn’t have overly complicated controls or even a wide variety of options. The shoulder buttons allow you to accelerate either backwards or forwards, and once your special ability has charged up -something that is indicated by the circle around your character avatar- you can use it by simply pressing A. These abilities are admittedly quite varied, whether it’s the ice cream truck’s freeze ray or the sushi truck’s ability to speed up for a few seconds but they aren’t enough to break up the repetitive and monotonous gameplay.

Apart from the aforementioned tournament mode, there is also a free mode, which allows you to take on your friends in multiplayer matches. These can be played in either 1 vs. 1 or 2 vs. 2 mode, if you manage to convince enough poor saps to actually bother to participate in this snoozefest. If you don’t, you can always substitute your friends with computer-controlled opponents, although the AI present here is simply terrible. It all adds up to a game that continuously reminds us just how superior Rocket League is. (Un)fortunately, Food Truck Arena doesn’t support online play either, probably because the developers knew that the number of players they’d attract with this crapfest wouldn’t cough up enough revenue to keep servers running. The baffling thing here is that if you want to unlock new characters or arenas to shake things up in multiplayer mode, you’re going to have to first unlock everything in tournament mode, which means that unless you dedicate yourself to several hours of playing the game solo, you don’t even have access to the tools to shake things up in multiplayer.

In terms of controls, you have the option to choose between “worldwide” or “standard” controls. The “worldwide” option is far superior, as it allows you to navigate your truck simply with your control stick, whereas the “standard” controls let you move your car in the same way as a real-life remote-controlled model car, forcing you to constantly adjust the direction you are going in. No matter which option has your preference, it will require some time to familiarize yourself with the game’s controls as they feel grossly inaccurate, almost as if there is a delay between your input and the response of your truck.


If it wasn’t clear by now: Foodtruck Arena is a title that you should avoid at all costs. It functions at a basic level, but the gameplay is tedious and boring, and there is a far superior alternative available if you’re looking to play a car-soccer hybrid game. (We’re not going to repeat the title again, but we may have mentioned it a few times throughout this article.) We’d have a hard time recommending Foodtruck Arena even if it was a unique concept, as there simply isn’t enough present here to be worth your time and money, and what is offered simply isn’t fun.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 6.0/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Foodtruck Arena - Review, 6.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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