SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab
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Creature from the Krusty Krab
North American Wii cover art
|Developer(s)||Blitz Games (PS2, GC, Wii)
WayForward Technologies (GBA, DS)
|Release date(s)||GC, GBA, & PS2
|Genre(s)||Platformer, Action-Adventure Game, Racing Game, Rail Shooter|
SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab is a video game for the Nintendo GameCube, PlayStation 2, Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and Wii developed by Blitz Games and published by THQ. It stars SpongeBob SquarePants, his best friend Patrick Star, and their enemy Sheldon J. Plankton as they journey to nine different worlds, supposedly, inside the dreams of the characters. The Wii version was a North American launch title. It is also the first SpongeBob game released in Japan (PlayStation 2 and Wii versions), but was released under the title: "SpongeBob" (スポンジ・ボブ Suponjibobu), to mark it as the first video game in the SpongeBob series to have a Japanese release.
Players have access to three playable characters during the game, SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick Starfishman (Patrick Star in superhero form), and Sheldon J. Plankton, and must guide them through nine levels of play in a dreamworld. Four different types of gameplay have been incorporated into the game, known as flying, rampaging, racing, and platforming. During flying sections, the game sets obstacles, one in front of another, and the player must maneuver past them. In most cases, the game will tell the player which way to fly (up, down, left, and right). On the Wii, the player uses the controller like an actual plane control stick. The most common cases of this is when SpongeBob uses his plane to attack a giant-sized Plankton. In rampage levels, the player controls a giant sized Plankton and uses special powers and moves to destroy everything in their path. The player's laser power is indicated by a bar on the right side of the screen, which refills after use. The Wii version features controller movements that respectively activate moves. Racing gameplay is similar to most racing games; it is featured in both the air and the ground's gameplay, fuel must be collected in order to keep the player's vehicle running. The platforming gameplay is spread throughout the game, such as when Plankton must escape from a live Krabby Patty or when Patrick Starfishman saves Bikini Bottom from his evil form, Dreaded Patrick.
In a dream, SpongeBob's bed transforms into a hot rod and he drives it around a track. After several races, he accidentally drives into an unnoticed pit. In another dream, Patrick is a superhero named "Starfishman" in a comic book-like world where everyone resembles him. Starfishman pursues the villainous "Dreaded Patrick", who attempts to remake the town in his own image. Starfishman eventually beats Dreaded Patrick in a battle at his secret lair. However, Starfishman fails to see a surprise attack. He is tied to a rocket and launched into outer space, where he hits an asteroid, a piece of which falls to Earth and traps Dreaded Patrick.
In another dream, Plankton zaps a piece of Krabby Patty with his Enlargatron Ray. However, the ray's coordinates are inaccurate, causing the Krabby Patty to overgrow and mutate into a vicious living patty. Plankton decides to fight back with size but the inaccurate ray only makes him the height of an average citizen, not enough to dwarf the patty. Plankton, carrying only his freeze ray, is pursued by the patty throughout Bikini Bottom. The patty ultimately loses Plankton when he hides. However, Plankton gloats about his victory and is spotted. The patty leaps forward and crushes Plankton.
SpongeBob reaches the bottom of the pit he drove into and is eaten by an Alaskan Bull Worm. He encounters Old Man Jenkins, who is building an airplane to escape the bowels of the worm. Within the worm, SpongeBob locates spare parts for the airplane. In outer space, Starfishman manages to untie himself from the rocket.
Plankton awakes to find the giant Krabby Patty sleeping beside him. As he sneaks away, Karen's wake-up call awakens the patty. Plankton sets the accurate coordinates for his ray and makes himself monster-sized. The patty flees and Plankton gives chase, destroying Bikini Bottom in his wake. He finds the patty hiding in a skyscraper and destroys each floor to force it out. Meanwhile, SpongeBob and Jenkins exit the worm's mouth and find Plankton. The giant patty escapes Plankton's clutches and clings onto SpongeBob's plane. Enraged, Plankton pursues the plane.
SpongeBob tries to avoid Plankton while devising a plan to defeat him. After a long pursuit through the city, SpongeBob engages Plankton on a radio tower. SpongeBob destroys the support bolts to make the tower unstable, causing Plankton to fall on his rear. As Plankton aches in pain, SpongeBob feels sorry for him and decides to help him up. Plankton then captures SpongeBob. Starfishman arrives from outer space and teams up with Mermaid Man and the Bikini Bottom Army to battle giant Plankton and rescue SpongeBob. After the battle, Starfishman must locate a shrink ray to shrink Plankton.
After Plankton is shrunk, he accompanies Patrick and SpongeBob into a dream bubble, where they meet a doctor with a Krabby Patty for a head. The doctor explains that the reason for their bizarre dreams is because they all ate a Krabby Patty before falling asleep; the chemical composition of the patties affected their biorythms and caused a reaction that resulted in the dreams. SpongeBob then asks the doctor why he knows so much about Krabby Patties; the doctor strips his outfit off to reveal that he is a Krabby Patty. SpongeBob, Patrick, and Plankton chase after him and head into the final level where they race against one another for the Krabby Patty trophy in a bizarre, nightmare-like racetrack. The level's ending depends on which character the player wins with:
- SpongeBob celebrates his victory, and overlooks his dream bubble to discover that it was a dream. He pops out and brings the Krabby Patty to the Krusty Krab, chopping the patty into average-sized patties for the customers. SpongeBob then notices that he and the customers have Gary's shell on their backs. SpongeBob then meows, suggesting that he is turning into a snail.
- Patrick suddenly appears at the Krusty Krab where everyone is celebrating him. He attempts to eat the Krabby Patty in front of him, but it escapes and Patrick ends up ramming into a door, causing him to see multiple Garys.
- Plankton successfully takes over Bikini Bottom and destroys the Krusty Krab with his own Krabby Patty franchise. However, the talking patty from before warns him that, "what the patty gives, the patty can taketh away." Patties then begin raining down and crushing Plankton's empire, one of which has a familiar set of snail-eyes that crushes the Chum Bucket.
In the ultimate ending, SpongeBob, Patrick, and Plankton wake up in one another's dream and it is revealed that this was all Gary's dream, who was the one who ate the Krabby Patty. After waking up, he goes around town and sees SpongeBob, Patrick, and Plankton, who are acting just like in the dream. He then returns home to rest. SpongeBob brings back a Krabby Patty for Gary, who refuses to eat it because it will give him nightmares. Gary then watches as SpongeBob has a "conversation" with the patty. As SpongeBob prepares to eat the patty, he is eaten by the Alaskan Bull Worm, causing Gary to faint into slumber.
Developer Blitz Games had a meeting with staff from THQ during the 2005 E3 trade show, where they were asked to oversee and develop the SpongeBob SquarePants franchise. THQ staff revealed that they had an "intimate" business relationship with Nintendo, and that Nintendo had expressed an interest in having a SpongeBob game published on their new console, the Wii, which at that point was still known by its development name Revolution. Blitz came up with several styles of play during development, some of which did not become part of the finished product. In particular, shooting sections using the Wiimote had been considered, but license holders Nickelodeon were uncomfortable with them due to SpongeBob SquarePants being a cartoon. Due to Blitz developing their own middleware with a focus on providing cross-platform compatibility, the main sections of the game such as driving and platforming are the same for each console version of the game. The mini game controls work differently on the Wii version of the game, the Nintendo console was the main focus of development. Extra development time was spent configuring the control methods for the Wiimote and the standard controllers used on the other consoles.
The game was announced prior to the 2006 E3 show, and was first shown to journalists at that event.
The game was nominated for an Annie Award for best animated video game in 2006. It also won the award for favorite video game at the 2007 Kids' Choice Awards. The game received average reviews in addition to some more positive or negative ratings. Nintendo Power referred to the game as the "most ambitious and most successful SpongeBob game to date" in their December 2006 issue.
Several reviewers noted that the fictional world does not resemble Bikini Bottom or the cartoon itself, that the game does not "feel" like a SpongeBob SquarePants title.
Key points brought out in the above reviews include:
- The ease of navigating through each level.
- The play control is both "perfect" and "responsive".
And key flaws brought out in the reviews include:
- Bad graphics.
- A continuous racing and 2D levels.
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- "Legacy: 34th Annual Annie Award Nominees and Winners (2006)". Annie Awards. Retrieved 2008-01-14.
- Holland, Lila (2007-04-02). "Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards Winners!". TV.com. Retrieved 2008-01-16.