SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake – Review
Follow Genre: Platformer
Developer: Purple Lamp
Publisher: THQ Nordic
Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S
Tested on: PC

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake – Review

Site Score
6.2
Good: Fun story, Cute visuals, Overall solid platforming mechanics
Bad: Combat feels a bit tedious, A bit too basic at times
User Score
4.0
(1 votes)
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Rating: 4.0/10 (1 vote cast)

During our lifetime, we ponder about the meaning of life and many other things. One of those big items is the question of who lives in a pineapple under the sea. Thanks to SpongeBob Squarepants we know the answer to this significant question, as it is in fact Spongebob Squarepants himself that lives in a pineapple under the sea. This important philosophy lesson aside, SpongeBob recently garnered a lot of attention again with the impending release of The Cosmic Shake, his latest videogame adventure. Once again, things go awry, and the yellow sentient sponge finds himself in a multiverse of sorts, making sure Bikini Bottom can be saved. We tried out the game, and while it does have a solid foundation, it also felt a bit basic at times.

Story

When SpongeBob and Patrick are given Mermaid’s Tears that grant wishes by a fortune-teller, the duo goes a bit overboard and decides to wish for so many things that the world as they know it gets messed up. It seems that Bikini Bottom has fallen apart, and many of the town’s iconic characters are now missing. The missing characters are now in so-called Wishworlds, which are somewhat similar to parallel universes. Unbeknownst to him, it seems that SpongeBob has opened the Multiverse, or Jellyverse in this scenario. The world is currently covered in Cosmic Jelly, and SpongeBob will have to collect enough Jelly to undo the damage that has been done.

Overall, the story is quite fun. You’ll get typical SpongeBob scenarios that you can play through, and the story progresses at a steady pace. Each of the Wishworlds also has its own theme and little stories you can plow through.

Graphics

Graphically the game is rather ‘cute’. The visuals remind us of games such as Crash Bandicoot or Banjo & Kazooie, albeit with a bit more polish. All character models are very nicely made and have quite a few details to them. The different biomes you’ll have to play through all look colorful and interesting enough to explore. Assets, however, get constantly reused and we found some of the environments to be a bit empty. We felt as if The Cosmic Shake was an upscaled Nintendo 64 or PlayStation 1 title. This is, of course, not a bad thing, but it would have been nice to have a bit more asset variety here and there.

Sound

The sound design is handled superbly. The voice acting is truly what steals the show here, and it’s fun that the game’s dialogues are all voiced. Thanks to this, it feels like you’re watching a very long episode of the show. The music is also decent and the upbeat music remains entertaining for the most part. If you decide to explore for lengthy periods of time during levels, you’ll start noticing the soundtrack is somewhat limited, however. A bit more track variety would have also been welcome here. The sound effects are good, and some of the effects actually made us think even more of retro platforming titles.

Gameplay

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake is a 3D platformer much in the same vein as Super Mario 64, Crash Bandicoot, or Yooka-Laylee. The game will have you play through several themed levels in the ‘Jellyverse’ in order to restore balance to Bikini Bottom. The offset is very simple, as you’ll have to jump, swing, punch, and kick your way through these stages in order to save some of the franchise’s beloved characters.

As a whole, The Cosmic Shake is a very simplistic game. As you progress through the game, you’ll slowly unlock new skills or power-ups, such as a gliding kick or a fish hook that allows you to swing from specific objects, and so on. Even though the game revolves around different costumes, they are basically cosmetic, as you can always use all unlocked skills with each of the suits. While it would have been fun to have some more costume-specific skills, we understand it would then become a bit too tedious to constantly swap outfits to be able to perform certain moves or skills.

Truth be told, there isn’t that much more to say when it comes to gameplay elements. You’ll gradually progress the story as you play through the seven Wishworlds. As the game unlocks new skills per world, you’ll also be able to revisit older levels in order to find more secrets and thus find more collectibles. The platforming mechanics themselves are quite solid even though the camera angles do detract a bit from the overall fun to be had. More than once we missed jumps due to poor camera placement and this sometimes also became rather frustrating. The combat is probably the least fun aspect of the game as this generally feels wonky and tedious, as hitboxes don’t feel precise and more than often we were hit by attacks we simply could not avoid. Once again, the awkward camera angles didn’t help that much here either. We also encountered a few bugs during combat where enemies would run outside of the boundaries of enclosed arenas. When this happened we had to wait until the enemy returned in order to open up the arena walls, allowing us to progress again.

Conclusion

SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake is a fun and simple platformer that feels a bit rough around the edges. As a whole, you’ll be treated to decent platforming action with fairly unsatisfying combat. We loved the overall visual presentation and the story was fun to play through. We would have loved to see a bit more content and the overall shtick with the different outfits didn’t exactly feel fully fleshed out. Nonetheless, this one might be fun to play together with your kids or simply if you’re dying for some more SpongeBob-related adventures.

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Rating: 4.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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SpongeBob SquarePants: The Cosmic Shake - Review, 4.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

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