The first month of 2023 is officially ending and high-quality games have been released in the past two weeks. Although they are all from different genres, none of these releases is a platformer. In fact, it feels that this genre has sadly not been receiving the amount of love it used to. However, there are still games that manage to shine in this present market that is dominated by action games. A few years ago, SpongeBob Square Pants: Battle for Bikini Bottom – Rehydrated was released, a remastering that arrived thanks to THQ Nordic acquiring the rights to the game. And after a good reception from fans, The Cosmic Shake, an original sequel has arrived.
AT A GLANCE
GENRE: Platformer, Action, Adventure
DEVELOPER: Purple Lamp
PUBLISHER: THQ Nordic
RELEASE DATE: 31 Jan 2023
FINAL SCORE: 8/10
The story of SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake starts off with a normal day in Bikini Bottom, where SpongeBob is planning a trip to the iconic Glove World. Fans of the TV series will recall this is a theme park where the theme is, well, gloves. SpongeBob is joined by his ever-charming friend Patrick.
On their visit, our two favorite characters carry out their usual sort of fun and harmless shenanigans. SpongeBob ends up acquiring a vial of soap that he uses to blow out bubbles hoping that they will grant his wishes. However, what started as a simple visit ends up turning into a cosmic disaster when a portal opens up and plunges the town into chaos. Turns out the bottle belonged to King Neptune and wasn’t supposed to be used like free candy.
To correct their mistake, they get in touch with Madame Kassandra, the gypsy who sold them the bottle in the first place, who advises them to go looking for their missing friends across the multiversal worlds that can be accessed via the portals. The story tends to get sidetracked a bit here and there, but the trademark SpongeBob humor is still present.
As the main character, players will have to face a series of challenges and puzzles, using their wits and abilities, to save Bikini Bottom and restore order to the land. The game’s level design is well-done, with a variety of environments that are inspired by different locations from the show. Players can explore different environments, such as the downtown area, the amusement park, the beach, the underwater caves, and other iconic locations from the series, with different challenges and obstacles to overcome in each. Each environment is filled with its own unique set of obstacles, enemies, and collectibles.
The game’s gameplay is fast-paced and action-packed, with a variety of challenges and obstacles that players must overcome. Players must navigate through different levels, using SpongeBob’s unique abilities to defeat enemies and collect power-ups. The game also features a variety of mini-games and puzzles that offer a nice break from the action and add an extra layer of challenge to the gameplay. The game’s boss battles are also well-designed, with challenging and entertaining encounters that require players to strategize and use their abilities to defeat.
Keeping in line with the tone of the SpongeBob franchise and making sure the playable element can complement the visual, is no easy task but Cosmic Shakedown manages to do it with ease. We can move our character, jump, and feel the ease of control, we can also shoot bubbles or attack by hitting our enemies with our net. Additionally, we will have specific movements or abilities that will help us in the progression of the levels, which are combined with the themes of these levels.
The game’s graphics and animation are top-notch, with colorful and detailed environments and characters that look just like their counterparts from the show. The show’s original cheerful character is reflected in the vibrant world, thanks to the exceptional art design that accurately captures the essence of the source material. It is a triumph of creativity and design, allowing us to quickly connect with the characters and world, almost like love at first sight. The appealing scenarios as you progress make the experience even more enjoyable.
The game’s sound design is also well-done, with catchy and upbeat music that sets the tone for the game’s action-packed gameplay. They have managed to keep most of the original cast as well, and even translated it into a crazy number of languages, including our very own Hindi.
Overall, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake is a great game for fans of the popular cartoon series. The game’s story, graphics, and animation are top-notch, and the game’s gameplay is fast-paced and action-packed. The game’s level design and boss battles are well-done, and the wide variety of locations to visit means that you never get bored.