The Let's Play Archive

Restaurant Empire 2

by Enchanted Hat

Part 7: A sweet new restaurant

Episode 7: A sweet new restaurant

??? Aww, this is so cute! You guys look great together in this picture…

Yeah we do don't we? This was from our first vacation together in Bali. Armand 'officially' proposed to me that day…

??? Officially?

I've told you this before, don't you remember? Hmm… well, we talked about marriage for a while before we really decided to do it. And it took us a reaaally long time, or at least it took me a really long time to be sure.

Remember that time when Aunt Izzie wouldn't stop nagging me about Armand?

??? Oh sure, that was during Thanksgiving. She was soooo annoying everyone, asking everyone when you were getting married and having babies and everything. I guess you finally made her dreams come true.

Well not all of her dreams yet anyway… Actually I've been meaning to tell you something. I've got some big news…

??? What is it?

I'm home!

I included this second picture to show that for that entire conversation Armand was standing perfectly still in the doorway, listening in. You're a strange man, Armand.

Hey is that Julia I hear in there?

Okay shush! I'll tell you later.

Hey hon! How was work today?

Hi Armand!

It's been frustrating, we're not really progressing as well as I'd hoped. Hopefully, that'll change soon.

An apprentice heading up a whole restaurant by himself? Do you think that's such a good idea?

He is a little green on the business end of things. With some proper guidance I think he'll be okay though.

So how's my favorite sister-in-law doing?

Actually, Jules was just telling me about her graduation from CSCA. She topped her class and,

Del, stop that, you're embarrassing me!

Wow Jules, tops in the CSCA? You shouldn't be embarrassed by something like that. On the contrary, you should be proud of yourself. It's quite the achievement.

He's right, what are you being ashamed of? It's not like you didn't earn it.

Honey, I was thinking that maybe we could give Jules a little career push. She's an excellent pastry chef and…

… Del, c'mon stop that…

… and I thought maybe if we gave her a little support…

I'm a little unsure because of your inexperience Jules. But I do think it is worth the risk.

And besides, we still have that old property up at Via Palestro that we've put off renovating so…

Really you guys, you don't have to do this for me…

Oooh that's right, I forgot about that! That place is perfect to set up the new shop, what with the national library just around the corner, there'd be lots of customers there…

I don't really have much of a say in this do I?

I wish you did, Jules

Not really!

Not really!

Thanks you guys…

We now have a patisserie!

This is another type of specialised "restaurant" which similarly to the coffee shops serves a very particular niche. In traditional restaurants in this game, you have very different recipe types which vary a lot in quality and profitability. For example, mains and appetizers tend to be high quality and to have very high profit margins, whereas desserts and soups have very low profit margins. Recipes that Armand can cook in a pan can be pushed out very quickly, which massively boosts profitability, whereas recipes that have to be baked in the oven are very slow to cook, which results in very bad profitability.

Now we have a restaurant that only serves oven-baked desserts.

This is the interior. Now why would Armand and Delia have to renovate this place? I think the amoeba carpeting and hypnotic golden spiral wallpaper is rather fetching.

As usual, we have to get this place operational. Let's get to it!

Now, I'm on the record as being strongly against these bigger four-person tables, but they had pink leopard-patterned sofas, there was just nothing I could do.

By 12:00, exactly zero guests have showed up to eat at our new patisserie. Since I have to meet a revenue target to complete this mission, that's, uh, that's going to be a problem. I max out our advertising spend and deeply discount the entire menu.

You asked for the chef signora? How can I help you?

A little later, the game takes pity on us and sends a scripted guest to the patisserie. We still haven't had a single regular customer. Also, I don't know why Jules is calling people "signora". The restaurant is in Paris, and as far as I know she isn't Italian. Also that's a dude.

That's right Ms…

Julia. Just call me Julia signora. What seems to be the problem?

Oh no, nothing's the problem. Quite the contrary, I just wanted to give you my compliments on this excellent cake you made.

Oh you're very kind ma'am. It's great to hear that people are enjoying it.

Mmm… this is really very tasty…

There's no voice acting for conversations in this game, so I have nothing to inform this choice. I'm just going to imagine this guy has a cartoonishly strong Australian accent because that seems the funniest to me (by the way, sorry about this game's terrible lamingtons, Australia goons. I'm sure it's actually very nice!)

From your accent, I presume you're Australian?

Not at all. From Spain actually. Although I did live in the States for a while.

What brings you to Paris Mr…

Rodriguez. It's Cecil Rodriguez. I'm an interior designer traveling here to consult on a client's office interiors. It's a shame that I'm too busy dealing with that though, as I haven't experienced any of the sights just yet. I hear they're fantastic.

It's a bit of luck on my part to come across your little shop.

Here's my card.

Cecil Rodriguez. Concept Furniture.

I'm currently based in Paris. If you ever have the time or feel the urge to perk up your shop's ambiance, just come by and visit us. We can talk more about it there.

Visit an interior designer? Sure, why not. Seeing as we have literally no customers, we might as well!

Hallo Monsieur!

Oh, it's just this place again.

Hello Madame, my name is Clayton Howell. How may we serve you t'day?

I'm looking for Mr. Cecil Rodiguez, Mr. Howell.

I see. Please wait right here. I'll get him for you.

Julia! Hello, how nice of you to come.

I was intrigued by what you said to me earlier, Cecille. I'd love to hear your ideas on how we can improve the look of my pastry shop.

At this point, I'm not sure whether Jules is genuinely supposed to have some sort of inability to tell people's genders, or if the people who made this game just never did any QA on their dialogue whatsoever.

Have a look at this then… I thought of this concept pretty much right after we saw each other. The idea is to bring out the sweet quality of your dessert to the exteriors of your store. And I think this would do greatly in that regard. What do you think?

This looks great. How soon can we start construction on this?

As soon as you want it Julia.

Great. I'll have a quick talk with my investors and I'll get right back to you.

I'm not buying you a castle for your terrible, unprofitable patisserie, Jules.

A guest at Delia's First Coffee Shops has an intriguing proposition for us.

Woah! The legendary Restaurant Empire simulation software?? That's like the world's greatest cookbook! This is the ultimate, most powerful item in the game for improving a chef's skill. Buying this will let us significantly boost a chef's skill with every single recipe in every cuisine! $100,000 is a small price to pay for such an unparalleled piece of software! I buy it immediately.

Unfortunately, paying $100,000 for Restaurant Empire put a big dent in our cash pile. I don't like being below $100,000 in cash in this game since someone might come and offer us an amazing recipe or something, so I'll have to go a bit further into debt. Another $100,000 should do for now, we're still well below our credit limit.

It's 3 PM, and we're at least getting a couple of guests at the new patisserie. Probably not enough to reach our revenue target, but I'm hoping that if I keep throwing good advertising money after bad, I'll eventually turn this place around.

I forgot to check this out until now, but at the end of the last mission we unlocked a new French dessert from our recipe research. I don't know why our French dessert research is more advanced than the other research topics, somehow it got out of sync. It's a nice recipe with a good quality rating. Unfortunately, our recipe for fruit gratin with almonds, another French dessert, is just way better at a 77% quality rating, so we don't really need this.

I also buy this recipe for hot chocolate from a customer at Delia's First Coffee Shop. Delia, please don't make hot chocolate with chocolate syrup, that's just terrible .

Shortly after, a guest sells us this breakfast recipe for $76,545. But the joke's on her, we paid $102,060 for this crappy recipe back in Restaurant Empire 1! Our guests are getting soft on us.

Unfortunately, that depletes most of our cash again, so I have to borrow another $100,000. Not too many more recipes, guys! Please?

As if to taunt me, another guest immediately sells me this recipe for another $18,000 or so.

Another recipe, another $43,740. Armand's going to have to take out some more credit cards if this keeps up.

To save some money, I swap the violinist at Treize à Table for a country singer named "Keith Rural" who will perform for beer and spare change. It's not like our guests will notice.

It's a good thing I saved that money, because a guest then sells us the recipe for our dear old friend, the seafood quiche! Once you discover the optional ingredients, this is one of the best desserts in the game. Why is the seafood quiche a dessert?

At the end of the month, our goal report shows that we didn't come close to meeting our targets for the new Patisserie. Not only was our revenue too low, but the game simply does not give you anywhere near enough customers to meet the goal!

In order to make it at least a little fair, the game does give you a long time to try to meet the goal. Let's keep at it!

It's month two, and we seem to be getting a few more customers, but our performance took a big hit because I had to close the restaurant down and expand the kitchen. The kitchen porter was blocking the way to the oven and was refusing to move, which meant that no food could be served all morning and early afternoon. Kitchen logistics is a big problem in this game. This is very unfortunate, because I love to optimise layouts for maximum efficiency, but that tends to increase the risk of situations like that. If I could put the kitchen porter in a separate building, I would.

But enough griping, we've researched some new coffee shop recipes! This is our new tea, basic iced black tea with lemon. It's got nice quality, so I'll definitely add it.

This is our new mixed drink.

And this is the new coffee shop food recipe. It's just cheese, lettuce and tomato drowned in mayonnaise.

Back at I Heart Cake, we are very slowly climbing our way towards the goal. This is despite closing the restaurant for a significant part of the day, so I'm optimistic about this.

We also researched this new American dessert. This would normally be useless since we don't have any American restaurants, but this one can also be served in patisseries! However, I can't add it to the menu just yet, because it would compete with a much more profitable recipe. I'll probably add it later once we get more customers and I Heart Cake is more sustainable.

After a few more months of very expensive advertising, we've almost reached our goals. We surpassed the goal of $28,000 in revenue, and we had 37 customers per day, just shy of the 40 customer target. I expect we'll reach that in the next month or the one after that.

To celebrate, let's go on another date with Michele!

…I can't believe you really did that Armand. I bet they're probably very mad at you for pulling a prank like that…

No, we're all good. George was a little upset for a few hours, but he mellowed down after a while, he hee…

…with all the hijinx you pull on that show, I'm surprised you guys actually get any work done. But seriously Armand, how has the show been doing?

Things are looking good for us right now. The second show received even better ratings than the pilot. George is optimistic so I'm confident we'll do well in the next few weeks…

Hey want to know a secret?

You know how much I love secrets!

We got Tim Brumann to guest spot on our next show.

Ooh, I loved him in the Seven Kingdoms. I saw it on a test screening in Los Angeles during my business trip. I thought he was great in that. How did George get him?

Well George told me the other networks were eagerly trying to land him on their talk shows on the same timeslot. But Tim, apparently, was somewhat of a regular in one of my restaurants before he hit it big. I'm told he's a big fan of my cooking. So I guess that's what clinched it for us.

Well, I'm happy for you… Hey, what do you say we get out of here, hmm?


… you've read my mind exactly.

Good evening everyone. As you all probably know, our show has been gaining a consistent audience since we first started streaming on the airwaves. And with that audience comes heaps and heaps of mail, housing all your comments, suggestions and feedback.

Today we are going to address one of your main concerns, and that is the lack guests on the show. We have a very big surprise for you today. Everyone, I'd like you to meet Hollywood's currently most talked about star. Please welcome Mr. Tim Brumann!

Well Tim, you seem to be getting quite the reception from the audience…

In case you were wondering: no, there is no sound effect to represent the audience, nor any audience for that matter.

Haha… yeah, it's really wild man… I've experienced some pretty good ovations from before. But the audience here, man, they're awesome!

So the first thing that Tim is going to help us with today is my recipe for the Lobster Thermidor…

Ooh… I like lobster…

Oh I know you do Tim, which is why I selected this dish especially for you… Did you know that Lobster Thermidor actually got its name from Napoleon? That's right. He named the dish after the month on which he first tasted it…

And Tim fucks off to let Armand do all the cooking matching.

Our second dish for today is what I would call a sprinkle-and-bake dish. Basically you prepare herbs and spices that will give character to your dish, sprinkle the mixture on your main ingredient, in this case, the fish, bake in an oven, and wala: a perfect meal served.

So Tim, are you ready for this?

I'm good to go Armand!

Luckily, although they keep switching up the layouts, these Bejeweled stages aren't really getting harder.

I would like to thank our very special guest tonight: Mr. Tim Brumann

Thanks for having me Armand!

Remember to catch him this week on your local Cineplex. The movie is Seven Kingdoms. I've seen it and I'll vouch for it. It's as good as all the critics say it is!

Again for our final thought, just remember: a dash of creativity and a pinch of variety is the wonderful blend to a satisfied stomach! See you everyone!

A couple of months later, we barely scrape by on our revenue and customer goals! It's almost as if the patisserie isn’t awful now.

Okay, now for the important part, let's jazz up this place!

These are the wall, floor and table options for the patisserie.

These are the wall- and floor-mounted decorations. Those giant bright shapes are supposed to be shaped flan, which is kind of cute.

Since we don't have any customers anyway, we could also place some of the larger tables. These are the unique large tables. There are also larger versions of the regular two-person tables.

Thread poll: what décor should we have in I Heart Cake?

Vote on wall, floor and table design. For example, to vote for wall type C, floor type D and table type B, vote "CDB". The winning combination will be whatever has the most votes when I play the next mission. Also, let me know if you want me to add any of the floor or wall decorations.