Warning!: Spoilers follow! I mean, as much as you can spoil a game about hamburger assembly.
Platform: Arcade (JAMMA)
Joystick: 4 way (UDLR), 2 button (Jump and Attack)
Players: 2 Simultaneous (1P: Red, 2P:Blue)
Super Burgertime is the conclusion to the Peter Pepper Trilogy (Burgertime, Peter Pepper's Ice Cream Factory and Super Burgertime). Taking the formula of the original Burgertime and jazzing it up with new graphics, weapons and burger sizes, it makes for a not so bad play.
While no story is given to player at the outset, the game seems to center around the quest to reach a castle in the top corner of the overworld map. Why? Can't say. Perhaps its the evil (and strikingly effeminate) king who convinced the food products to rebel. When the king is defeated, our protagonists participate in a parade where they ride in giant hamburgers.
Super Burgertime plays exactly like its predecessor. Climb the ladder, avoid the rampaging produce, stomp the bun, rinse and repeat. Once all the burgers are assembled the level ends. The burgers come in two sizes, large and small. The small burgers take one stomp a piece to fall a level whereas the large burgers take 4.
The most notable addition to the Burgertime franchise is a variety of weapons and items. Both players start with 30 seconds of Pepper power (Which can be used to stun and kill enemies). Framing the screen are two towers from which new weapons and items hang. Among the weapons: A gas can which fires gasoline at enemies, a long pole for jabbing, a spatula for smacking, a pan for whacking and boxing gloves which have no apparent effect. The items are fewer in number: A cape which does absolutely nothing (Though, when paired with the pole it makes for a badass look), sneakers which make you run obnoxiously fast (and right into Death's cold, clammy hands) and a purse, which also does nothing.
The game is split into 5 levels, which is further divided into 4 sub-levels. Each of the 5 levels has a distinct look to it, the first being a carnival, the second also a carnival, the third attempts a maritime feel, the fourth has a Mayan/Jungle motif and the last is the Castle of Evil itself.
Every 4th sub-level is a boss, which is no more less absurd than the premise the game is built on. The boss levels have you tossing whole hamburgers at beehives, angry birds, a birthing fish and poison gas balloons. This sounds weird until you consider the enemies: Eggs, Asparagus, Asparagus rockets, Eggs, Green Onions, Lighters and SOAP JARS. Yes, lighters and soap jars. Go ahead. Read it again.
Control and mechanics
Done? Good. The game itself is almost outlandishly difficult in the later levels. It floods you with enemies, provides you with minimal ammunition and gives you 4+ burgers to complete. Without MAME, I doubt I'd have made the 10+ dollar commitment to finish. Extra points can be achieved by smashing enemies between falling layers of the burger (At which point they become a coleslaw like substance).
Should I play it?
If you have a friend and Kaillera, Super Burgertime makes for a mercifully short and decent time killer. While other puzzle/platformers of the era far outperform it, the chance to revisit the world of Peter Pepper is just far too good to pass up. Three out of Five.