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OCTOBER 19, 2015 - VERSION 1.06

Fall (or autumn, whatever you call it) is here! Boo-hoo! But on a positive note, Pizza Express latest update is also here! After a few months of development, I'm happy to release version 1.06! Here is the changelog:

  • Added Challenge Mode. This is an online mode where players can compete for the best score in two different game modes: Arcade and Endurance!
  • Added 40 new achievements related to Challenge Mode.
  • Added the option to remove pizzas from the menu.
  • Added the option to remove ingredients from the kitchen. Doing so will consequently affect the menu, so be careful!
  • Added further descriptions in the Edit menu screen when editing the pizzas.
  • Added a sound to further notify the player when pizzas share the same name or recipe in the Edit menu screen.
  • Added a new sound to notify the arrival of a new order when the restaurant is already full.
  • Added a sound effect when clicking on cells in the Edit kitchen screen.
  • Added new tips.
  • Fixed sliders not saving the correct volume when switching between fullscreen and windowed mode.
  • Fixed wrong pizzas being rarely considered correct.
  • Fixed a rare bug that occurred when the player would try to toss away a pizza immediately after clicking on it to serve it.
  • Fixed the splash screen failing to skip in certain instances.
  • Fixed music not looping in the Evaluation screen.
  • Updated the appearance of coins in the Evaluation screen.
  • Updated the tutorials to reflect the most recent changes.
  • Updated the file steam_api.dll to allow online play.
  • Updated the game manual.
  • Updated localisation files.
  • Possiblty lots of other things I forgot to mention!

As you can see, many much requested features have been implemented, such as the ability to remove ingredients from the kitchen and pizzas from the menu. Some bugs have also been addressed and a brand-new online game mode, Challenge Mode, has been added. So let's check it out!

Challenge Mode is all (or mostly, at least) about pure skill and, as such, it rewards the most competitive players. Work in a difficult kitchen, offer a huge menu and your score will (or might) skyrocket - the harder you make your game, the larger your reward will be! But be careful: although it is easy to overcomplicate everything in your restaurant, is not so easy to manage the lot afterwards. For this very reason, your friend Lucky (and I) suggest caution: find a compromise between the game difficulty and your skill, and start building your fame from here. Test yourself in either Arcade or Endurance mode and beat demolish your friends! After all, this is what really counts, right?

Arcade mode takes inspiration from the coin-ops of the 80s and it wants to be challenging yet rewarding to play. It wouldn't be a true Arcade mode if it didn't have a combo system, and that's why I decided to implement one. You'll find two different counters to increase: a pizza combo and an order combo. The larger the combo, the larger the increase in score. You'll be racing against the clock, as you'll have 5 minutes to rack up as many points as possible. You'll be able to extend your playtime by completing orders (the quicker the service, the larger the time bonus), but you'll also have to fight against an ever-increasing game difficulty, penalties for wasting food, vanishing tables...

Endurance mode borrows many elements from Arcade mode (such as the combo system), but presents an entirely different objective. As the name implies, in Endurance mode you'll have to run your restaurant for as long as you possibly can. You won't have to worry about scoring points or extending your playtime (you won't be racing against the clock), but you'll have to worry about not running out of Reputation Points (or RPs, in short). Starting with 1000 RPs, you'll have to carefully manage them in order to last as long as possible, but it won't be easy. Making customers wait, mistakes, wasting food and such will cause the RPs to drop. They just don't want to stick around with you! But don't fret, you'll have a valid ally to assist you: the Prowess bar. This bar can be filled by serving pizzas and completing orders and once full, it can be activated to freeze your RPs for a short period of time. Ten seconds mightn't be much, but they can make a huge difference! Once your RPs hit zero, it's game over.

So, it's time to get flour everywhere and climb the ladders! So what are you waiting for?... You still don't have Pizza Express?!? Well, no problem! Instead of ordering your Friday night pizza from your favorite chain/shop, make it yourself, save $3,49/€3,49/£2.49 and get Pizza Express: now 50% off until October 26th! A lot less than your standard pepperoni pizza!

With this update out, I can finally be happy with the progress made on Pizza Express: now it really has all the game modes I always wanted! I hope the new additions will give you as much fun as I had making them. I don't know if there'll ever be other updates as massive as this one (university has started and this gives me a lot less time than before...!), but I'll definitely keep doing my best in order to improve the game where needed and to fix eventual (certain) bugs and problems.

Talking about bugs, if you find one, make sure to report it on the game forums! That being said, I'm letting you go, but I'd like to publicly thank Jonathan "Bidds" Biddle for his assistance (I would have never been able to implement Challenge Mode if it wasn't for him!) and all of you for sticking around so long. You're amazing!