This is what exactly comes to mind when you hear about “pizza rising”. Because where else can pizza rise to other than your mouth? PHOTO/PIZZA HUT

It’s Friday. The week is ending and the month is ending too. Guess what ended the last time we had a weekend? English football. With the crowning of Manchester United at Wembley stadium as the Emirates FA Cup champions, the curtains finally fell on the 2015/2016 English football season. Still in the United Kingdom, the IRB World Series season which saw the Kenyan rugby team win the main cup for the first time ever, ended at London’s Twickenham stadium.

As such, there will be many of us with more time this weekend for the first time ever in a long while. Well, there’s still the hot Champions League final on Saturday night, the Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon and to crown it all, episode 6 of Game of Thrones on Sunday night/Monday morning but they are so spaced out. I have an idea what you can do with the new found extra time: try out a hot new game developed by a Kenyan, Tumtafune – Rise of The Pizza.

‘Tumtafune’ is the Swahili word for “let’s chew him/her up”, exactly what those pizzas have in mind when ganging up to attack their chef.

The game is relatively new. It’s only been around for a little over a week and the first time I played it, I was impressed. The same is the case for my colleagues who have been on it for much longer than they’ve been working [rolls eyes].

The key selling point of Tumtafune as you will find out after spending an hour trying to beat your low high score is its addictive nature.

Its storyline is simple. It’s set in a kitchen so you get the usual stuff that you can find in any modern pizzeria’s kitchen. The game is, after all, about pizza! As the chef, the pizza coming off the oven somehow turns against you. Before you even realize it, it’s biting you and your “life” is at risk. As the rogue pizza bites, you have options to defend yourself. At first, all you have is the rolling pin you used on the dough. So you use it (by tapping whichever side the prying pizza is on) to remind the readymade pizza who the boss is. Before long, though, you will need a better weapon or else you will be overwhelmed and the food you prepared will actually feast on you.


By dragging your finger across the screen, you can move to the right where a knife pops up as soon as you’ve dealt with a few pizzas. As you beat up more rogue pizzas, a sound alert will remind you that you can use something even better than an ordinary kitchen knife, a butcher’s knife. Depending on how long you have been playing the game, by this time you are almost running out of your in-game life and the end is nigh, something the declaration Umetafunwa (you’ve been chewed up) will confirm.


According to the game’s developer, Eugene Adeli of Game Central Station, an upcoming update will add even more weapons including the ability to just blow up the whole thing. The chef will have more weapons at his disposal including a frying pan (because what else is better to smash things in a kitchen than a pan?), a flame thrower and a gas cylinder. Just like in real life, throwing the gas cylinder will result in an explosion.

As a version 1.0, the game is really smooth and there are aren’t any noticeable bugs. I have played the game on three different devices with similar results. Other than more weapons, which will be introduced soon, players will appreciate a constant leaderboard they can view in the game or some sort of integration with Google Play Games for the same. I would like to know how I fair when compared to others who are also dirtying their kitchen floor with pizza crust, toppings and sauce. I hope this gets added in a future update.

Also, if there can be a way to pause the game. I’ve come close to beating my high score only to fail to do so since I had to attend to something else urgent and there was no way to momentarily pause the game. Or is there something I don’t know? One more thing, may be that chef can be made to show some emotion? Like look worried when his pizza comes to bite? He just can’t have an expressionless face all through.

Tumtafune – Rise of The Pizza is only available on the Google Play Store i.e. for Android devices only. The developer tells me that the game is coming to iOS and Windows Phone before the end of June.


Casual, addictive games have had a lot of success on all mobile platforms and Tumtafune – Rise of The Pizza, is a good play if you want to kill time on a weekend. I can’t talk about a work day because you will definitely end up missing some other schedules without even realizing you are doing so. That looks like what the current high scorer did. How do you even hit a score of 982,018? The best I’ve managed is somewhere north of 16,000. Madness!