These days, if a celebrity launches their own game, it is likely with Glu Mobile. Known for their free-to-play mobile games, the publicly traded company lists more than 100 games, including Sonic the Hedgehog, Transformers, Guitar Hero and Deer Hunter. But since late 2014, the team has moved away from building known gaming titles to new personalized star-focused franchises. After topping gaming charts with Kim Kardashian, Britney Spears and other celebrity rise-to-fame games, Glu Mobile has now partnered with chef Gordon Ramsay to add a celebrity spin to their already popular Dash series.
According to Ramsay, a self-proclaimed control freak, Glu understood that he wanted to have input into every aspect of the game. “This wasn’t a label slap or something they just put my name too. You’ll see the traits, the level of intuition, and competitiveness.” Ramsay serves as your chef mentor and, as you might expect, he isn’t always easy to please.
In the game, you start off flipping burgers at a cafe in San Francisco. You play through each level earning cash, which you can then use to upgrade your cooking station to make cooking faster and more efficient. Gordon is with you every step of the way, giving you praise or barking in your ear. Despite his often sour reputation, the gamified Ramsay is quite helpful, stopping the game to give you tips or clear out the line when you are in the weeds.
“It gives an insight into my life. I started at a neighborhood bistro. I started with cheap produce, with no customers and an empty restaurant. Three in the kitchen with two in the dining room,” said Ramsay. “The actual app is exactly the same. You go back to the basics and then you build. But it does get serious. If you get better, I get firmer. If you get super good, I get harder. And if you get too good, then I am going to take you down.”
As the game progresses, you play to expand your franchise, working your way up to nicer restaurants, better ingredients and hoping to get those coveted Wishelin stars, Ramsay’s take on Michelin. After playing for a few days, I had yet to earn the ability to play multiplayer chef battles. The competitive side of the game is something the Glu mobile team is proud of and thinks will keep people motivated to play the game.
Glu has owned the Dash franchise, a 15-year-old brand with over a half a billion installs across PC and mobile, for over two years. In that time, the team has made Diner Dash, Cooking Dash, Hotel Dash and Wedding Dash games. “This is the one and only Gordon Ramsay Dash game,” says Glu CEO, Niccolo de Masi. “Partnering with Gordon, we are hopefully prime to be the category kill for the culinary gaming genre.”
And it seems the game has the potential to be just that. Building a celebrity experience on top of an already beloved game can only lead to one thing: real-life cash money. With Kim Kardashian reportedly making millions off her Hollywood game, there is a proven path to riches in the celeb mobile gaming space. It will be interesting to see if Gordon Ramsay and all his competitiveness will give Kim a run for her money.