Spongebob: Battle for Volcano Island

YER MAWGU!

“Save me Jebus!” was what I thought when I was told I had to play a Spongebob game, especially since I'm in the middle of FF12 at the moment. Nevertheless, I was quite excited about the “And Friends” thing going on in the title. A chance to play as all my little heroes! A wise old crab on a magical island who has summoned you there to save them from the evil Mawgu greets you at the beginning. I was actually very surprised by how good the graphics are, and there’s a lot of detail in the characters like blinking during gameplay. Everything is very cartoon style. However, the backgrounds fail to deliver. In fact, every level looks similar the same until near the end.


 

Spongebob and friends

The game starts with a simple tutorial where you learn about fighting, powerups and how to switch characters. The character switching is really fast and smooth, but all the characters have the exact same moves. It’s like having 6 skins for the one character. So much for the “and friends” idea. The only good thing about it is if you go as Timmy, instead of punching, you get to use a big hammer!

The music is also disappointing. In fact, it makes you want to rip your ears off, grind them into dust, fuse it into glass and then shatter them all over again. Its just feels like they couldn’t be bothered. In fact there is a lot of things in this game that make it seem like they couldn’t be bothered. The health bar for example. Or lack of more like. You get three pictures in the corner of the screen, happy face, angry face and sad face. Each one meaning a different level of health. The gameplay is pretty simple, run jump punch repeat. Occasionally there are some prince of Persia-esque climbing parts, but they’re pretty simple too. The fighting is basic too, you just have to button bash O and it’ll auto target the bad guys and kill them. The auto target can be annoying sometimes but the bad guys are so lame it doesn’t really matter. My final peeve with this game is after 4 hours of playing when I tried to pause the game I skipped the whole final cut scene and was greeted by the credits. Joy…

However, let’s think who this game is for. Little kids who love Spongebob. And I think it fits its little money-grabbing niche quite nicely. It’s easy for kids, simple gameplay and if you fall off the edge, you respawn where you last fell off. The voices are original, the jokes are Spongebob style funny. AND! You can beat up your team mates! There’s nothing like watching Spongebob falling off a cliff edge with a big grin on his face. The whole game, although simplistic was in fact a great laugh. The comic style will appeal to little kids, the gameplay is simple enough to get into and challenging enough on the last level to make them feel like they have made a (small) achievement. Ok, it’s not a great game, but for what it is, a small brand named platform, it does it well. There was not one moment during this game where I felt like killing myself. I had fun throughout the whole thing, just because of the sheer comic stupidity which it does oh so well. I mean, how can a game with Squidward in it not be funny? This may leave the seasoned gamer feeling slightly perplexed as to why they wasted their money and time, but if you’re getting it for your kid its perfect. And hey, you could sit and watch them play! The whole game is like watching an episode of Spongebob – random, obscure, and utterly pointless. You still watch it but you never tell your friends.

 

By The Fat

First Impressions

7

And friends!! And friends!!

Gameplay

5

Simple. No other word for it

Graphics

6

Nice comic style, but not polished

Sound

4

Woeful music

Story

4

Loose and random, very spongebob-esque

RATING

5.2

POOR