The surgeon who stapled my stomach might not agree, but in my view, the best cakes are the biggest cakes.
What you want is layer upon layer of rich sponge, separated by the fruitiest jam and covered with enough icing to rot your teeth in one sitting. Well, let's face it, if you're going to disobey doctor's orders and risk blowing your stomach wide open, you might as well make it worth it.
It's the exact same attitude Anino Games has brought to Cake Mania: Main Street.
Rather than serving up just one take on its own particular brand of time management, the developer has piled several on top of one another, attempting to tie what are essentially four games together in one neat package.
Bread and butter
The idea is to revive a once great town – Bakersville – long left dormant thanks to the glitzy new supermarket down the road by opening up a series of stores along its high street. One is a bakers, one a sushi restaurant, one a flower store and one a burger joint.
As you might expect, managing each venue – unlocked as you go – opens up different games. Running the bakery, for instance, consists of playing a reskinned version of Cake Mania: Celebrity Chef, complete with new types of customers.
Fixing fast food, however, is a slightly different process, focusing on layering each burger with the right ingredients according to orders.
Each one, however, uses the same control set up: you move a cursor around with the number keys, moving from object to object by pressing the '5' key. It's also possible to build up a check-list by getting ahead of yourself and marking off future moves while you're still engaged in another – handy when the customers begin to mount.
As well as using the cash you earn to upgrade each venue, money can also be put towards buying predetermined fixtures and fittings for the town as a whole. It's a token gesture, in truth, but it does at least provide some motivation to play on.
Time after time
The end result is a time management explosion, of sorts, tapping into city building simulation at only a cursory level - certainly not enough to detract from or, depending on your point of view, enhance the main meal: plain old time management.
While those new to the genre might well be bowled over by Cake Mania: Main Street as a result – it's essentially four games in one – for anyone who has been here before, GameHouse's latest feels more like the result of a desperate attempt to keep the downloads rolling in long after the model began to feel a touch stale.
Any attempt to truly move the genre forward has been dropped in favour of packing in as much rehashed action as possible, the end result being a big slab of time management that, when tackled all at once, will leave you feeling somewhat sickly.