The Canon: Burger Time

Erin and I went by our favorite arcade this week and since it has been a while since I got to play some of my favorite childhood arcade game, Burger Time. I played this game all the time as a kid, although that was primarily on a MAME emulator. Burger Time is a kooky game that deserves a little more recognition than it gets.


What made it great then? The objective of Burger Time is to construct burgers while fleeing sentient fast food in a maze. Think Pac-Man with Burgers. What set Burger Time apart from Pac-Man and other maze/chase games is the function of constructing the burgers. Running over an ingredient knocks it down one level, but completing the burgers while avoiding multiple enemies makes the simple task difficult. You are not without defense: Peter Pepper has his pepper power which will stun enemies. However there are limited uses and should be saved for true emergencies. Overall, Burger Time was and is a solid arcade game and a fun cabinet to visit in the arcade.


What makes it great now? The wonderful thing about arcade games is their long term playability. The simple graphics and controls prevent the game from looking “aged”, and since it doesn’t rely on story, there is little to stop Burger Time from being just as fun as it was in 1982. I play Burger Time whenever I get the chance and consider it one of my arcade favorites.

Why should it be remembered? Considering Burger Time is 34 years and still a fun experience, I can’t think of much that would make Burger Time fade away. Preserving arcade cabinets is a concern, but the software is simple enough that the game is infinitely portable to new platforms.


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