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Spongebob Squarepants: Battle For Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated

Posted by GG Goblin On June - 30 - 2020

Living in a pineapple under the sea has never looked so good.

 
In this time of remakes and re-releases, I must admit that a 3D action platformer starring everyone’s favourite undersea dwelling sponge was not something I was expecting. Given the overwhelming joy and fun to be found with Nickelodeon’s Spongebob Squarepants, I guess it should have come as no surprise. So, before we all drop on the deck and flop like a fish, let’s take a look at Blue Lamp Studios and THQ Nordic’s Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated.

 


 
Originally launching back in 2003, Battle for Bikini Bottom is back with a fresh coat of paint and even something a little extra thrown in. Given that the youthful target audience will likely not remember the game the first time around, or may not even know who Spongebob Squarepants is, the tale of a maniacal Plankton trying to steal the recipe for a burger from a crab may sound a little outlandish. However, the magic of Spongebob is that the silliness can be enjoyed by all ages, and the same can be said for this game, as long as the player enjoys 3D action platformers.

 
So, start at the beginning. Spongebob Squarepants is a sea sponge that lives in a pineapple in the town of Bikini Bottom, under the sea. His best friend is a starfish, he works as a fry cook, and his neighbour, a squid, really doesn’t like him. There is so much more to say about Spongebob, but that is a journey of discovery for newcomers that I won’t spoil. The story in Battle for Bikini Bottom is almost an everyday occurrence for Spongebob. Plankton, who owns an unsuccessful restaurant called The Chum Bucket, wants to steal the recipe for the Krabby Patty from Mr Krabs. In order to do this, Plankton has created an army of robots, but the robots won’t obey him. In order to stop the robots from trashing Bikini Bottom, Plankton asks Spongebob to help, but obviously doesn’t admit he was the source of the menace.

 


 
The players will begin by controlling Spongebob inside his own home, which is surprisingly large. Moving from room to room, this tutorial area will give the player the basics of how to proceed in the game. Signs are spotted around that will give the player instruction, guiding them to collect coloured “splats” in all different areas, using spinning and jumping moves to reach them or press buttons. Eventually, the player will be able to find the golden spatula and unlock the door to head out into the first area of Bikini Bottom.

 
The golden spatulas are the currency of progression the game, with each new area needing a higher number of spatulas to unlock. Sometimes, golden spatulas will simply be found out in the open, waiting to be picked up once the player can work out how to reach them. Other times the spatulas are locked behind activities that will need to be completed to gain the reward. It’s a pretty simple route to progression that in some ways shows the games age.

 
Spongebob is not alone in his quest to save Bikini Bottom. Aside from all of the well known characters that the player will meet as they visit the different locations, Spongebob’s friends Patrick Star and Sandy Cheeks join his quest. Patrick is a starfish and as such can throw watermelons and belly flop enemies, obviously. Sandy is a Texan squirrel in an astronaut suit, and so uses her lasso for various different actions. When combined with Spongebob’s bubble moves, between the three of them they can battle any threat they face and reach all parts of a level. While each of the characters control pretty much the same, the variety of different moves available to them keep things fresh and interesting, and players are able to swap between characters at bus stops in the level, to make use of their unique abilities.

 


 
Aside from collecting the splats, known as shiny things, and spatulas, the player will be fighting various enemies and platforming their way through the levels. There are some fun little mini games to be found, adding variety to the gameplay, and boss battles will come up to challenge the player to take on a massive robot in the form of one character or another. These battles ramp up the difficulty a little bit, but the overall difficulty of the game is never anything too challenging. Again, this may be ideal for the younger players, but it doesn’t take too much to work out the puzzles or defeat the enemies.

 
When it comes to being Rehydrated, this remake throws in an extra multiplayer mode that didn’t quite make it into the game the first time round. This mode is available both locally or online for multiplayer fun, with a larger selection of characters to play as, and involves fighting against wave after wave of enemies. It’s a bit of fun, but will not pull players away from the main game. Otherwise the rehydration comes down to the beautiful visuals. Battle for Bikini Bottom is a stunning looking game and Spongebob fans will be more than happy with how nice the underwater setting and quirky characters look. The soundtrack is also great, with most of the familiar voices returning to keep the game authentic. Realistically, it is only through the gameplay that the age of this game shows, with some slightly awkward movement that can make platforming a little tricky in places, and a few glitches where things don’t work how they should. The problems are small but noticeable.

 


 
Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated is the remake that platforming fans didn’t even know they wanted. With tons to collect through a joyously bright and colourful world with fun characters, there is very little not to enjoy here. While the age of the original game does come through, the visuals perfectly suit the current generation of consoles and younger players will enjoy getting to know the sponge that wears square pants. Platforming fans who yearn for something a little less hardcore, and those who just love Spongebob, will find loads of fun in Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated.

 

 ★★★★★★★★☆☆ 



 

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