Welcome to Restaurant Reviews, an all-new non-regular feature here on IYROOBTY. Today, I will be writing about the midscale Italian eatery and entertainment chain known as Chuck E. Cheese.
There is nothing like a kid's very first trip to Chuck E. Cheese. Why, I still remember mine like it was last week. And that's because it was.
Last Sunday, I ventured into one of Chuck E's 542 locations. My first impression? It was like Aladdin's Castle had started serving pizza!
Remember when you were a kid and your mom would come and get you out of the arcade and tell you it was time to go eat and that maybe you could come back later but there was never a later? Well, problem solved.
At Chuck E. Cheese, you can play and eat, then play some more. Kids of all ages can enjoy the fun. Well, except for the climby thingie, which apparently has an age limit even though there was none clearly marked. I really don't think there should be an age limit on fun.
Now on to the ratings:
Entertainment - 8.5 (out of 10)
Kudos for the number and variety of arcade games. There was also the climby thing and a giant slide. Plenty to keep you, er, your kids, occupied.
I deducted half a point here because the football toss game stopped giving me tickets. And I was dominating, too! Also, Mario Kart was NEVER open.
I took away another point for the animatronics stage show which is going on pretty much the entire time you're there. I mean, it was interesting enough. I just think if those kids ever figure out that's just a bunch of metal and wires and not a real person up there, you're gonna have some crying kids. It'll be like finding out there's no Milli Vanilli.
Can I be completely honest? Going into the whole thing, I thought Chuck E. was really gonna be there. It's a little disappointing, that's all.
Food - 5.5
Well, there's pizza. And I think I saw a salad bar on my way to the restroom. Honestly, you don't even really notice the food so much. You just wolf it down as quickly as possible so that you can get back to the games.
Ambience - 8
Fun. Noisy. Laid back. I deducted two points here for the rude six-year-old girl who kept climbing onto the ramp and stealing my skeeballs then throwing them down the wrong lane. I mean seriously, where was her legal guardian? What a dark day for parenting.
Also, if the thought of forty kids running around mostly unsupervised all over the place bothers you, then that'll take the ambience rating down a few notches to about a... negative twelve.
Value - 10
Where else can you do a half a million things, all at a quarter to three? Oh, wrong slogan.
All games cost one token. Granted, each game lasts an average of forty-two seconds. But still, high marks for making things simple. Most kids find the ticket counting machine pretty fun, so you can usually kill an extra ten minutes or so per kid on that.
Then there are the prizes. We cashed in our tickets for a cool glider airplane, an inflatable hammer, and some Pop Rocks. At what age will I stop being amused by Pop Rocks? You might think it would have already happened by now, but apparently not.
Overall, it was an enjoyable experience. However, I would like to make a couple of recommendations. As I do have my very own blog on which I sometimes write restaurant reviews, I think I've earned that right. Number one, be sure to come well-stocked with hand sanitizer. Also, if they could like maybe put kids who steal other kids' skeeballs in time out or something, that would be great.
"You can hear the cries from the carnival rides, the pinball bells and the skeeball slides..."