Saturday, January 30, 2010

Video Game number twenty three: SpongeBob: Truth or Square

Game review number twenty three in my 365 Games in 365 Days project is "SpongeBob: Truth or Square".

With my Saturday "chimp" marathon out of the way, I decided to stick with the kid's games and play something I've secretly wanted to try for a long time. The SpongeBob game.

Yeah, I said it.

Keep in mind, I just got done playing Space Chimps, so I was already on a platformer kick. Perhaps that experience helped contrast this one, but either way....this game is SO much better. I enjoy the SpongeBob cartoons. When my nieces and nephews were younger, they would always ask me to turn the channel from whatever I was watching to Nickelodeon or the cartoon network. When SpongeBob was on, they'd be happy...and I didn't mind watching the cartoons. It's a good, funny show.

The game is voiced by all the same actors. The controls are great. The camera is easy to control. The difficulty is dumbed down quite a bit from the game I just played, but that doesn't make it lame. In fact, when I was thinking about which game I wanted to play next....I was wondering if I shouldn't just keep playing SpongeBob for awhile.

The story isn't what I'd call "deep", but it's funny. SpongeBob needs to find the secret Krabby Patty recipe that he's been entrusted with, only he can't remember where he left it because he's sad. The only way to jog his memory is to make him happy. He starts out at a party, and the levels you take him through are his "happy memories".

SpongeBob chatters throughout the game, with lots of silly one-liners and throwaway jokes. "I'm going to knock you into next week!" he shouts at an enemy. "Or at least a half an hour from now".

You collect coins and power-ups to enhance the adventure. There are tons of secret items to find if you're into the whole completionist thing. There's an achievement for making SpongeBob grow old, which you do by putting down your controller and watching the character animation while he waits for you to pick it back up. This reminded me of the first time I played Sonic the Hedgehog and he would tap his foot when you stopped in one place too long. In Mario 64, Mario would eventually fall asleep and start snoring. SpongeBob has some great idle animations, and they're worth watching even without the achievement.

Overall rating so far: 7.9 out of 10. Great little game.

Kid factor: This one is easier than Space Chimps was, and I can see kids being able to figure it out and make progress. There are plenty of things for the older generation of gamers to do, including collecting all the "Happiness items" and what-not.

I dig it.

I need to play about 7 more this weekend in order to be on track for January, so I'm going to have to keep moving...but I think I'll be back to this one sooner, rather than later.

Here are the first few achievements I unlocked.


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