First released in September 2006, Cooking Mama on the Nintendo DS lets gamers virtually prepare recipes by using the stylus to do cooking tasks such as chopping vegetables, tenderising steak, and stirring soup. A Wii version, Cooking Mama: Cook Off, followed in May 2007 and added a multiplayer mode. Cooking Mama 2: Dinner With Friends is due to be released in early 2008.
Originally the game was not set for release outside of Japan, but since being launched in North America and Europe, it seems to be one of those quirky Japanese games that successfully make it overseas.
In August, the franchise scored 500,000 copies, and now--months later--505 Games has announced that it has sold over one million units in Europe alone. 505 Games marketing director Ian Howe comments, "Now we're all keen to see how quickly we can get Cooking Mama 2 to one million!"